The Byron Bay Surf Fest With The Roxy Team
What do you get when you mix a group of athletic, energetic young women, a coastal beach town and an incoming cyclone?
The Answer: A whole lotta fun!
Things may not have gone exactly as planned for this year’s Annual Byron Bay Surf Festival but it sure didn’t stop the Roxy Crew from having their fair share of laughs and good times. It’s all about what you make of a situation, however gloomy or un expected it becomes.
Between a movie premiere (Lisa Andersen’s bio flick “Trouble), a Panel discussion, a material recycling workshop and a Mental Health Awareness morning, we had quite the busy schedule. Unfortunately for us the rest of the weekend and events had to be canceled due to severe weather and the surf forecast being a tad unmanageable (10-15ft. Swells will do that)
Nevertheless, we made the most of it! Taking on long hikes, tasty cafes, cool yoga studios and a plethora of other activities. The magic of Byron Bay is that there’s always something to do.
Our first day started bright and early, on a morning with One Wave and the community it has fostered around mental health awareness. One Wave meet up all around the world, every Friday of every month and provide a space for people to safely come and share what’s on their mind. Breaking the stigma of anxiety and depression, I was taken by how some of these individuals were so willing to be vulnerable within a circle of perfect strangers. Challenge, acceptance, random acts of kindness, the open-heartedness of this crew and the team behind it was inspiring. Not to mention the final words of one of our Roxy girls, Junior World Champ Vahine Fierro, who reminded us all of the power of gratitude.
“No matter how hard life gets, be grateful. Every morning, I wake up and write 5 things I am grateful for in my journal. Everyday there is something to give thanks to”.
We Got Inspired
As part of the festivities, a women’s panel was put in place to talk about the progress made in the women’s surf industry. In the lead up to Lisa Andersen’s “Trouble”, TV presenter and full-time-funny-girl Liv Phyland sat down with Lisa, Kelia Moniz, Vahine Fierro and Cait Miers. The discussion was one of inspiration, motivation, and never backing down for your dreams. These ladies, as talented as one another, found their passion and followed it, wholeheartedly, until they provided a space for themselves to thrive. It wasn’t about beating the boys, looking better then your peers or having the latest, coolest gear. The particularity with the Roxy girls, and the community that Lisa nurtured right from the start of her career, is that they embrace the ideals of sisterhood, supporting one another, and working hard for what you aspire towards.
We Surfed (sort of)
The large swell didn’t really allow for us girl to paddle out for a few log waves, but we kept our hopes and spirits high as the stormed passed! Just our luck, on the last day, we surfed The Pass and laughed our way through the waves. It felt good to get some surf stoke!
Anita Ghise is a dressmaker and designer based in Byron. As well as being an absolute legend of a human, this talented lady showed us a thing or two about reusing old material to make scrunchies and bags. In line with Roxy’s new POP Surf collection, made from recycled fabrics using minimal water and cutting out any toxic solvents. It was also great to talk sustainability tips with the girls, like bringing your own keep cup for coffees and limiting your time in the shower!