The East Coast of the United States – specifically North Carolina – is known for its beautiful beaches, but it’s not really on the map for world-class, surf-able waves. Nonetheless, the Cape Fear region is growing a surprisingly robust surf culture.
The beaches of North Carolina have landed on all kinds of lists – including on Dr. Beach’s 2019 list of the best beaches in America. Okracoke Lifeguarded Beach in the Outer Banks won second place in 2019 – just after a beach in Hawaii. But it’s not just beachcombers, sun worshipers, and swimmers who enjoy area beaches. Surfers are a major part of the beach community.
On this edition of CoastLine, we explore the culture and community with three of the area’s long-time surfing enthusiasts – who also happen to be experts:
Jo Pickett has raised her kids on the waves off North Carolina’s coast. She’s a former U.S. Womens Surfing Champion, and for more than two decades she’s owned and operated the Crystal South Surf Camp.
Mike Barden has been a part of Surf City Surf Shop in Wrightsville Beach for nearly 28 years. In 2003, he decided to buy the business – which he owns today.
Sheldon Goodwin has served as Manager of Sweetwater Surf Surf Shop, also in Wrightsville Beach, for the last six years.