Huntington Beach

$10,000 gift may help lure Olympics

THE U.S. OPEN of Surfing is one of the events which makes the Huntington Beach Pier area “the Carnegie Hall” of the sport (US Open photo).

By Jim Tortolano

With an eye on the 2024 Summer Olympic Games, the Huntington Beach City Council approved a contribution of $10,000 to the city’s International Surfing Museum for its “Surfing Circle of Honor” event set for June 20.

The “Circle” will seek to draw 500 surfers of all ages to the beach near the city pier in an attempt to break the world record for “world’s largest paddle out” and to show that Huntington Beach would be a good place to site the surfing village for a future Olympics – if Los Angeles is successful in landing the games. It’s one of two finalists, with Paris being the other.

Tokyo will host the 2020 summer Olympics, and that’s the first year that surfing will be a medal sport.

“It’s truly an investment in our city,” said Mayor Barbara Delgleize. “Think of the beneficiaries,” she said, citing not only downtown businesses but also hotels and other enterprises throughout the city. “Tourism is our number one growth industry today.”

Over a dozen speakers at the meeting spoke up in favor of the move, including one who called the HB pier area “the Carnegie Hall of surfing.”

A motion for the city staff to draw up a contract conveying the contribution was approved on a 6-0 vote, will Councilman William O’Connell recusing himself.

Also on Monday night, the council approved on a 7-0 vote a resolution declaring an end to a water shortage and returning the city to “permanent water conservation requirements.”

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