The 12th annual May Day Memorial Surf Classic, a surf competition created to raise awareness of heart disease, was held Saturday, May 7th at the Flagler Beach Municipal Pier. The surfing tournament is held annually in memory of Dollie Sue Watson, who was an intensive care unit nurse for Halifax Health. The event’s organizer, Haley Watson Stephens, lost her 46 year old mother, Dollie Sue Watson, to heart disease on December 29, 2006. This year, the event raised $17,670, the most money raised thus far from the event. Money raised from the surf classic go to Halifax Health – Foundation’s Center for Cardiology fund which provides new equipment and technology for the hospital’s cardiovascular unit.
The event is held every Saturday before Mother’s Day, and includes a ‘Surf Mom’ session and a ‘Minnow’ session for the little ones. The official competition sessions include different age groups of men’s and women’s longboard and short board competition. This year, the event was brought back to Flagler Beach, the hometown of the Watson family. Mayor of Flagler Beach, Suzie Johnson, joined in on the competition as a first time competitive surfer.
Haley Watson Stephens stated, “We didn’t just set a new record…we shattered it! My heart is simply overflowing with gratitude and I can’t thank everyone involved enough for the success. I feel so fortunate for the continued support from Halifax Health, and think it is simply incredible that we as a community have access to world-class healthcare right here in our town. The fact that the funds raised will stay right here in our community, to help those in need, means the most to me.”
To learn more about the event, please visit maydaymemorialsurfclassic.com.