Our Washington chapters had a comprehensive year in 2018. From baseline Surfrider activities such as beach cleanups, which every chapter hosted, to uniting and organizing opposition including rallies and press conferences opposing drilling off our coast, it was a year of the convergence of the strength of our chapters in Washington. With 2018 and the lessons learned now in the rear view mirror, chapters have begun annual planning efforts to layout a road map of what they’d like to achieve in 2019 and where they would like to be in January of 2020.

2019 annual planning kicked off with the Northwest Straits Chapter taking part in their first retreat with their current executive committee. The team spent the weekend at Fort Warden, outside Port Townsend, taking in the scenery with beach walks followed by some socializing out on the town Saturday night after a long planning session. They also managed to get creative for some team pictures. Key takeaways and objectives for the chapter in 2019 are:

  • Host Quarterly Membership Drives
  • Continue the long-running Blue Water Task Force program
  • Host another International Surfing Day event with Aslan Brewing
  • Include More Speakers at Bi-Monthly Chapter Meetings
  • Work on Plastic’s Reduction Policy with the City of Bellingham
  • Continue to Coordinate with the Western WA Surfrider Club on Cleanups

The Olympia Chapter kept it local and was hosted by Batdorf and Bronson, a locally registered Ocean Friendly Restaurant. The chapter was very active in Olympia in 2018 from hosting cleanups, running a Blue Water Task Force program, registering OFRs, and much more. For 2019, the chapter discussed:

  • Continue their BWTF Program and Take Down Water Quality Warning Signs at Priest Point that Deter Recreation.
  • Host More Guest Speakers at Chapter Meetings
  • Continue to Register OFRs
  • Get Active in Olympia on Statewide Policies during Session
  • Host 2 Olympia Cleanups and 2 on the Coast

The Seattle Chapter took to White Pass for a winter style weekend and a cabin setting to map out their 2019. The team was having too much fun while focusing too hard that a group shot was forgotten but still established several opportunities in 2019 such as:

  • Develop Citizen Science Umbrella Program Featuring Smartfin, Nanoos, and Other Surf-Tech Programs
  • Increased Communication and Partnerships in the Seattle Area
  • Engagement in State and Federal Ocean Conservation Policies
  • Continue Micro-Beach Cleanups
  • Host International Surfing Day Celebration and Cleanup

The South Sound and Olympic Peninsula Chapters have yet to take on annual planning in 2019 but will shortly and this article will be updated once they do. In the meantime, join your local chapter in 2019, bring your new ideas, and help Surfrider make a positive impact in your community. For any questions on chapter activity, please contact WA Field Manager Brice Boland