Around Avoca: Avoca Beach Surf Club
When you are in Avoca Beach, you are most likely going to hear about the Avoca Beach Surf Club, which is the premier surf club in the area. Starting from the desire to keep Avoca Beach safe for everyone the community decided to form the Avoca Beach Surf Life Saving Club, as a way to keep people informed and trained regarding safety in the water.
The Club itself was founded on January 6, 1929, just a week after two people drowned in Avoca Beach. Vowing to keep the waters safe for everyone, the community came together and decided to form the said Avoca Surf Club. And while it beginnings were humble, the Avoca Beach Surf Club was quick to make its presence known and its drive felt.
In just four months, the Club already had a dozen Foundation Bronze Holders. This was no easy task as the feat was accomplished even before the Club had its own reel! A year later, the Club gained its first surfboat and with that another half a dozen Bronze Medallion holders.
This growth of the Avoca Beach Surf Club was not only seen in the awards and honors that the Avoca Surf Club took home but in the continuous growth of its clubhouse and its activities. During the first years of its existence, the clubhouse, before being relocated to its current position, was built by Club members and volunteers. However, with the continued growth that the Club was experiencing, almost three decades later, new plans for the Clubhouse were drawn up. By 1964, the building was done, followed by another major extension at the back.
Another testament to the community’s part in making the Avoca Beach Surf Club grow, in 2006 the Clubhouse was rebuilt and refurbished, also with the help of the community through the “Buy a Brick” program.
The women also played a prominent role in the Avoca Surf Club. In 1946, the Avoca Surf Club’s Ladies Auxiliary was formed, giving women a strong voice and part in keeping the waters of the Avoca Beach safe. These women have worked tirelessly and selflessly for the Club in the past decades and since the Avoca Beach Nippers were started in 1965, they have regularly placed as one of the top ten clubs at the State Championships every year.
But the Avoca Surf Club isn’t all about awards; they are also about giving back to the community and celebrating life with the community. Through the many programs that the Club has held, the community was able to come together and celebrate and have fun. One of the most famous activities that the Club started was the Surf Carnival on New Year’s Day. Started in 1930, it became an annual event for the next half a century. It showcased surfing events, as well as wood-chopping and horse racing.