The 54’th Easter Pro / Am In Cocoa Beach Marches On!

April 6, 2018 • Competition, East Coast Contests

The long running Easter Pro / Am Surf Contest was held for the 54th year in Cocoa Beach, Florida. This year the event was dedicated to Dick Catri who had run the event for over 30 years with his partner John Griffin. Sadly, after a storied, legendary career pioneering and leading east coast surfing, Dick passed away in 2016.

The lady who brought you the 54th Easter Pro/Am Crystal Cooper standing proud next to a personally enscribed ESM cover of Dick Catri as illustrated by the great East Coast Surfing Hall Of Fame artist, Phil Roberts. This year the event was run in his memory as he was at the helm of the event for over 30 years along with partner John Griffin.  Dick had signed the photo before he passed with a simple : ‘To ESM, Aloha P.S., Thank You.” and is a treasured artifact of the magazine. Dick Catri was missed but his spirit certainly permeated the vibe on the bachn and out in the water. Photo: Duce

This year Crystal Cooper, owner of Salty Sweet Clothing stepped up and took the event by the horns and ran with it in a way that would have made Catri proud. She pooled together numerous sponsors and $5000.00 in prize money to be distributed to winners in different divisions. The event started out Saturday with overcast skies and small bumpy waves in the three foot range. Heat after heat was run in the small but contestable surf.

The standout surfers were the ones advancing through out the day and eventually surfed Sunday which was almost all made up of finals. Easter Sunday had much better waves with very little wind most of the day giving the three foot waves a glassy face and plenty of length for multiple maneuvers. Not to be outdone the longboard heats are like a blast from the past. Nose rides,fin first takeoffs and five and ten toes over the nose got the beach jazzed. As always, the show stealing surfing dogs event was the crowd pleaser of the day with thousands in attendance to watch and cheer the tail wagging canines on with every ride and wipeout.

Easter Sunday in Cocoa Beach was the place to be if you’re a surfing fan. Thousands turned out to watch the 54th Easter Pro /Am and enjoy the beautiful weather. Photo: Dugan

After the surfin’ pooches, the final rounds of the biped board riders ramped up to see who would be the top dogs in those divisions and the day ended with the women’s’ and mens’ pro finals. Winners included past champion Corey Howell taking home the Steve Casanova Men’s Pro , Rachel Presti in the Ron Jons Women’s Pro, Steve McLean in the Fat Donkey Dessert Shop Men’s Longboard Pro, and Jazmine Dean winning the Salty Sweet Women’s Longboard Pro. Each one of these winners took home a trophy and a $500.00 check. With the sun starting to set and the holiday weekend coming to an end, the 54th Easter Surf Contest was in the books. Next year will be the 55th year of the contest and it should be a “not to miss” on everyone’s calendar for their Easter Spring break.

4,3,2,1….. the Steve Casanova Men’s Pro Winners: Connor Deputy, Joey Putnall, Logan Hayes, and Corey Howell. Photo: Duce


Another win for Rachel Presti who grabbed a 1st in the Women’s Pro. Photo: Dugan

Results for the 2018 Easter Pro / Am In Memory Of Dick Catri:

Steve Casanova Men’s Pro

1.  Corey Howell
2.  Logan Hayes
3.  Joey Putnall
4.  Connor Deputy

Repeat winner Corey Howell surfed with style and power to a 1st place finish in the Steve Casanova Men’s Pro. Photo: Duce

Ron Jon Women’s Pro
1.  Rachel Presti
2.  Kayla Durden
3.  Zoey Benedetto
4.  Audrey Presti
Fat Donkey Dessert Shop LB Pro
1.  Steve McLean
2.  Patrick Nichols
3.  Saxon Wilson
4.  Fisher Grant

The traditional board of choice has always been a longboard and this year the tradition stood with the Fat Donkey Dessert Shop LB Pro and event winner Steve McLean styling with a clean five over the nose. Classic. Photo: Dugan

Salty Sweet Women’s LB Pro
1.  Jazmine Dean
2.  Shawna Wetzel
3.  Erica Peek
4.  Maddy Malizia

Salty Sweet Women’s Pro winner Jazmine Dean snaps one off the top on her backhand. Photo:Dugan

13-18 Junior Men’s
1.  Carl Burger
2.  William Hedleston
3.  Darian Pitcher
3.  Chase Hankins

Carl Burger stepped up his game taking a 1st place win in the 13 to 18 Jr. Men’s. Photo: Duce

13-18 Junior Women’s
1.  Morgan Morris
2.  Emma Binder
3.  Maddie Franz
4.  Alexie Kellum
Boys’ U12
1.  Ethan Harbinson
2.  Shea Edwards
3.  Alex Hacker
4.  Kollin Boyet
Girls’ U12
1.  Kylie Pulcino
2.  Abbie Yates
3.  Kora Passarelli
4.  Sophia Kolantzis

The surfing needs to be judged and the judges need to do it. Heat after heat, hour after hour for two days they worked from eight to five both days. A big shout out for their stamina and professionalism. Photo: Dugan


Now living in the Sunshine State Dean McManus from the Outer Banks is winning everything he enters. April Fools day was no joking matter for Dean as he posted a 1st in 40 & Up Men’s Shortboard. Photo: Dugan


Sunday saw beautiful weather with huge crowds and the all time spectator favorite Dog Surfing. Here’s a little mutt getting his GoPro shot with another getting ready for the next set. Photo: Dugan


Under 12 Girls 3rd place finisher Kora Passarelli surfed every wave with style after just getting back from a few weeks with her family in Costa Rica. Her Dad Anthony managed to grab himself a second in the Men’s 40 & Up Short Board. Photo:Dugan


Sebastian Baker styling on the tip. Photo: Dugan