COCOA BEACH, Fla. – Christmas in Florida wouldn’t be the same without Surfing Santas, a holiday tradition where hundreds of surfers in cherry-red Santa suits and other holiday costumes paddle out and catch some waves to entertain crowds at Cocoa Beach every Christmas Eve.
This year though, a major winter storm that was forecast to drop Brevard County’s temperatures into the 40s was right on time, moving in overnight Friday and raising questions over whether Surfing Santas would still occur. George Trosset, the event’s founder, erased all doubt.
“A little bit of cold can’t stop a surfing Santa,” Trosset said.
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Trosset said he began the Surfing Santas event at Cocoa Beach in 2009, from humble beginnings.
“We went from one spectator — my 3-year-old grandson — and today we have 8-10,000 people here,” Trosset said.
Since then, he said the event’s best year welcomed 837 surfers, yet he acknowledged expectations that fewer would show up this time due to the cold.
“This year, if we got 100 people in the water, I’d be surprised,” Trosset said. “I don’t blame them, it’s cold.”
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Many of the surfing Santas we spoke with said that those cold temperatures weren’t going to stop them from enjoying the annual tradition. One, who goes by “Bubba,” even said that the weather made things more festive.
Zack Spurlock, another Santa, said that he just layered up.
“Under this, I’ve got on a 3/2 full suit,” Spurlock said, referring to his wetsuit. “You can see smiling faces and high fives everywhere. That’s what brings us out.”
Learn more about Surfing Santas by clicking here.
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