Yesterday was the Winter Solstice, the official start of the countdown to summer. So what better time to report on the Endless Summer Boogie, held at Skydive San Diego November 21-22. It’s not possibly because this story has been sitting in my inbox for that long. No, that wouldn’t make any sense at all.
Endless Summer Boogie
Nearly 44 years have passed since Director Bruce Brown and his ragtag crew tailed budding young pros Mike Hynson and Robert August across the globe with the ambitions of “following summer around the world”. The Endless Summer has since given birth to a way of life, a vibe, a longing to find what makes you happy and to simply go for it. Southern California’s crystal blue skies and wave-battered beaches no doubt evoke the very spirit that spawned the influential documentary. It’s this very same search for freedom, fun and family that lures skydivers all across the Golden State and beyond to Skydive San Diego’s Endless Summer Boogie. With world class load organizing, food, raffles, music, schwag, bungee-runs and beautiful weather, the Endless Summer Boogie has once again delivered and lived up to its lofty title.
Flyers at the Endless Summer Boogie are much like the diverse crowds of long and short boarders you’ll find scattered along the San Diego shoreline: a hodgepodge of young and old, new and well-weathered. Those that made their way to sunny Skydive San Diego were treated to load organizing from a broad array of talent and disciplines. Boogie-fevered freeflyers of all skill sets were rounded up by organizers Moo, David Gershfeld, Matt Lewis and Chad Ross. From three-way horny-gorillas to the Taft crew throwing down eight-way sequentials, anybody and everybody had an opportunity to get a little vertical. Not to be outdone, Gary McDonald, Julie Richter, and Padu Merloti led the horizontal front. Newbies and groms had a unique opportunity to partake in quality three-ways while the more seasoned boogie-goers were treated to multipoint big-way relative work. The end result: two full, safe and dynamic days of nonstop prop-turning fun.
Photos by Matt Lewis & Nick Boyd
And what would a boogie be without nightlife? As a heavy marine layer sleepily rolled in over head, the mood shifted from dirt diving and packing to rehashing the day’s shenanigans. During dinner, boogie organizer Matt Lewis raffled off Performance Design and Apex swag along with apparel from Gravity Gear, not to mention the handful of lucky ticket holders scoring killer deals from Cookie Composites, Velocity Sports Equipment, Precision Aerodynamics, UPT and Liquid Sky. As an added bonus, a bungee-run competition was held for anyone up for the challenge. Winners from both a men’s and women’s heat collected a handful of free jump tickets. A margarita slushy machine not only illuminated the course but aided in “rehydrating” the whiplashed racers.
Under a crisp San Diego night sky, DJ Moo set the vibe for the remainder of the evening with an imaginative compilation of music spanning generational genres. If one was lucky enough to catch it, even Terry (the drop zone’s veteran pilot) was doing a little twist and shout. In retrospect, the boogie-goers were doing what they do best: boogieing. Aided by an early southwest sunset, the party waltzed its way through the night in truly Endless Summer fashion.
The same year Brown was in the midst of filming his now epic documentary, a kite builder by the name of Domina Jalbert was in the process of designing what would later become the first of the ram-air canopies. The wonder and excitement of those days has fueled a growth in both sports. Brown’s was the sea, and ours is the sky. One thing will never change, however. And that is the spirit and passion to find and capture what makes you happy. Skydive San Diego’s Endless Summer Boogie is just that; a tide pool of people looking to find what makes them happy and, in turn, happily finding what makes this particular boogie so unique.