Gidget is back to surfing

How many Gidgets does it take to premiere a new Gidget movie? Maybe not as many as you’d find Elvises at an Elvis convention, but expect quite a few when Accidental Icon: The Real Gidget Story makes its Australian debut at the Global Surf Industries Noosa Festival of Surfing, presented by Golden Breed.

Gidgets on stage for the premiere will include the original Gidget, Kathy Kohner Zuckerman, diminutive Californian surf legend Mickey Munoz who doubled for star Sandra Dee in the surf scenes in the 1959 movie, and Australian Gidget Layne Beachley, seven-times world surfing champion. Gidgets in the audience are expected to number in the hundreds, with everyone invited to get into the 1950s Malibu groove and dig out those pedal pushers, frilly blouses and bad Hawaiian shirts.

Gidget’s Girls Night Out, presented by Noosa Longboards, is a night of fun for guys and gals, with live music by Canadian singer/songwriter Kym Campbell, a spectacular 1950s retro swimsuit parade presented by the Karen Neilsen Collection, a chat session with the Gidgets, plenty of laughs guaranteed, plus ‘50s-style burgers and other great dishes available from Parque @ Surf City, the festival’s own licensed bar/café.

The show, hosted by surfing world champions Layne Beachley and Peter Townend, kicks off with the first Australian showing of Greg Huglin’s short feature Surfing Dolphins, followed by the swimsuit parade. After intermission, Accidental Icon makes its debut, followed by an on-stage chat session with director Brian Gillogly and the stars of the movie. (Expect some surprises!) Then it’s dance the night away with Kym Campbell live and the Parque bar rockin’.

Accidental Icon tells the story behind the famous book and film franchise that brought surfing to the masses more than half a century ago. Los Angeles teenager Kathy Kohner discovered Malibu, boys and surfing in the fabulous summer of ’56.

She had such a ball with Kahuna, Tubesteak and the crew, that she wrote it all down in her diary and showed it to her dad, screenwriter Frederick Kohner. The rest is history, with the book becoming a bestseller and spawning a run of movies and TV series that spanned more than 30 years.

The story that Brian Gillogly tells in his excellent documentary is how this pretty girl from Brentwood almost inadvertently opened the door for women into a previously male domain, and became surfing’s first feminist, inspiring future champions like Layne Beachley, who was known exclusively as “Gidget” until she became a household name in her own right.

Fun, food, film, fashion…Gidget’s Girls Night Out will be an evening to remember, with an underlining message of female empowerment. Don’t leave the old man at home. Bring him along, he might learn something!

Icah Wilmot: always there when you talk about surfing in Jamaica

Jamaica continues to garner top positions in regional surfing as local and regional surf star Icah Wilmot was victorious at the Pan American Surfing Association Event in Cuba over the weekend where he finished in the top spot.

The event was sanctioned by the Pan American Surfing Association and was attended by surfers from Barbados, Cuba, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic.

The surfers competed in Open Surf and Body Board. Icah represented Jamaica in the Open Surf division where he dominated the day’s proceedings with quick radical maneuvers.

The waves were small but Icah who was a crowd favorite, displayed superior wave selection and surf technique to better his opponents and won the first place medal much to the joy of the spectators in attendance.

Icah is currently in Trinidad where he is in training for his 2010 season and will return to Jamaica this month.

The Laureus World Action Sports award would suit Greg Long very well

Mick Fanning, Greg Long, Stephanie Gilmore and Antoine Albeau are nominated for the 2010 Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year.

There are only surfers and windsurfers nominated for this category (no kitesurfers or bodyboarders) and none makes it to the World Sportsman/Sportswoman of the Year category.

In the past three Laureus editions, nine-time surfing world champion Kelly Slater took home two Action Sportsperson of the Year trophies.

The 2010 nominees are:

Laureus World Sportsman of the Year

Kenenisa Bekele (Ethiopia) Athletics - first 5,000 & 10,000m double in World Championships
Usain Bolt (Jamaica) Athletics - won 100m, 200m & 4x100m relay World Championship gold medals
Alberto Contador (Spain) Cycling - won his second Tour de France in three years
Roger Federer (Switzerland) Tennis - broke Pete Sampras record for most Grand Slam singles titles won
Lionel Messi (Argentina) Football - FIFA World Player of the Year, a star in Barcelona's brilliant year
Valentino Rossi (Italy) Motor Cycling - won his seventh senior MotoGP world title

Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year

Shelly-Ann Fraser (Jamaica) Athletics - added World Championship 100 metres gold to Olympic gold
Federica Pellegrini (Italy) Swimming - broke the four minute barrier in 400m freestyle
Sanya Richards (US) Athletics - won first individual 400m gold medal in a global championship
Britta Steffen (Germany) Swimming - won World Championship 50m & 100m gold in world record times
Lindsey Vonn (US) Skiing - won World Cup for second year and two gold medals at World Championships
Serena Williams (US) Tennis - won Australian Open and Wimbledon and regained world No 1 ranking

Laureus World Team of the Year

FC Barcelona (Spain) Football - won Champions League, Spanish League and Spanish Cup in 2008/09
Brawn Formula One Team (UK) - won Drivers and Constructors World Championships in debut year
Germany Women's Football Team - won their fifth straight European Championship
Los Angeles Lakers (US) Basketball - won 15th NBA title in their record 30th play-off appearance
New York Yankees (US) Baseball - won their 27th - and record - World Series
South Africa Rugby Team - international rugby team of the year, won Lions and Tri-Nations series

Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year

Jenson Button (UK) Motor Racing - won Formula One World Championship after 169 Grand Prix
Mark Cavendish (UK) Cycling - won six stages of the Tour de France, a record for a British cyclist
Tom Daley (UK) Diving - won 10m platform gold medal in World Championship, at age 15
Juan Martin del Potro (Argentina) Tennis - beat Roger Federer in final to win US Open, at age 21
Ji Yai Shin (South Korea) Golf - rookie of the year on the US LPGA Tour, winning three events
VFL Wolfsburg (Germany) Football - small club from Lower Saxony, won their first Bundesliga title

Laureus World Comeback of the Year

Lance Armstrong (US) Cycling - returned to Tour de France at 37 after four year gap, finished third
Kim Clijsters (Belgium) Tennis - won US Open in her third tournament back after two year absence
Jessica Ennis (UK) Athletics - won World Championship heptathlon after missing Olympics with injury
Brett Favre (US) American Football - came out of retirement and created record for consecutive starts
Blanka Vlasic (Croatia) Athletics - won World Championship high jump after disappointment at Olympics
Tom Watson (US) Golf - came within a putt of winning the British Open at age 59

Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability

Justin Eveson (Australia) Wheelchair Basketball - winner of every tournament in which he took part
Kurt Fearnley (Australia) Wheelchair Racing - won all five marathons in which he competed in 2009
Gizen Girismen (Turkey) Para-Archery - No 1 archer in the world in her category since 2007
Shingo Kunieda (Japan) Wheelchair Tennis - unbeaten in 77 matches dating back to 2007
Michael Teuber (Germany) Cycling - won three gold and one silver medal in World Championships
Natalie du Toit (S.Africa) Swimming - continued to dominate able-bodied and disabled events in 2009

Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year

Antoine Albeau (France) Windsurfing - won the 2009 PWA Slalom World Championship
Chris Cole (US) Skateboarding - won the Dew Cup and was named Skater of the Year
Mick Fanning (Australia) Surfing - won his second World Surfing Championship in three years
Stephanie Gilmore (Australia) Surfing - won her third straight World Surfing Championship, at just 21
Greg Long (US) Surfing - won big wave event at Waimea Bay, Hawaii, in front of 50,000 spectators
Danny MacAskill (UK) Trials Bikes - spectacular stunt video seen by 350,000 on You Tube in 40 hours