Continuing his status as surf legend/rock star/international man of mystery as of late, Kelly Slater jammed out with Tom Curren Friday night at the Waimea Valley fundraiser benefiting the North Shore Lifeguard Association. Last seen onstage playing rhythm guitar for Eddie Vedder (who recently returned the favor by acting as Kelly's board caddie at Sunset Beach), Slater serenaded the enthusiastic crowd, singing several verses on his own.
The event, officially the Rip Curl Pipe Masters party, included a Rip Curl Fashion show and a surfboard auction where a Dick Brewer gun, shaped for Roger Erickson, fetched over $6,000. A Polynesian performance with fire twirling and traditional dancing provided entertainment to a crowd happily swilling the Foster's beer on tap. Local band Makana performed as well, keeping the party moving late into the night.
Rip Curl can only be pleased after the success of the recent Pipeline Masters with Andy Irons, Kelly Slater, Cory Lopez and Rob Machado competing in an all-star final—a final that has some pundits calling it possibly the best single heat in ASP history. This party was the culmination of a Pipe Masters that saw Kelly and Andy trading perfect barrels, with Andy's competitive instinct coming into play after Kelly had put him in a precarious combo situation early in the heat. Even with all eyes on the dueling rivals, Machado and Lopez surfed like madmen as well, making for one of the most exciting ASP finals. With the ASP circus wrapping up for 2006, the Waimea party was certainly a nice way to wind down the year and step back from it all…hopefully without waking up too fuzzy after numerous Foster's.