Surf Riot At US Open Of Surfing (Videos & Pics)

Earnest-Pettie by Earnest-Pettie on Jul. 30, 2013

Alejo Muniz and Carissa Moore won titles Sunday night at the US Open Of Surfing in Huntington Beach, but the roar of the crowd they heard probably wasn’t from people showing their appreciation. Instead, it was probably from people showing Huntington Beach the ugly side of surf culture as they rioted in the streets, fighting, ruining property, and looting stores.

The annual event draws large crowds to Huntington Beach, and not everyone is content to enjoy the surfing, chill out and have a good time. People have been complaining about unruly tourists attending the event for years. In fact, of the eight people the police are looking to arrest, only one is actually from Huntington Beach.

As is always the case, these days, social media quickly began to fill with video, pictures, and tweets about the disturbance that carried on into the night. In addition to documenting the action, these images are likely going to be used to find the people involved in the ruckus to try to bring them to justice.

Looking at a wide angle of the video, it appears that the unrest was caused by a small portion of the fans in attendance.

You could say that this is a case of a few bad apples, but the fact is violence is endemic to surf culture. Surfers hang out together, they are protective of their territory, and they will rough up anyone who transgresses their unwritten code of the beach. While the violence and rioting was unexpected, it should also have been unsurprising.

There are actually surf gangs that exist. They don't get the same level of scrutiny as the crips and bloods or various motorcycle "clubs," but they exist. The "Bird Rock Bandits" were responsible for a murder in 2007, and the prosecution in the case for the murder of Brandon McInerney argued that Oxnard's surf group, the Silver Strand Locals were a gang. We have a perception of surfers as being these laid-back, happy-go-lucky types, but like the koala, they are deceptively aggressive... as these paparazzi who dared enter a beach to grab photos of Matthew McConaughey can attest.

No one would suggest that all surfers are jerks just because a small part of the community of surfers are rambunctious idiots, but it bothers me that the rambunctious idiots get a pass.

The real question is was this riot the result of the increasingly unruly behavior of surfers, especially at the US Open Of Surfing, or was the riot an outlier, unlikely to be repeated? Do any of you guys surf? Have you ever seen a surfer fight? What do you think about surfers and violence?

Seriously, the guys who did this were a bunch of jerks

- Earnest (on Twitter @earnestp)


I'd of punched that girl

so much for the english being all polite and civilised FUCK YOU WOMAN! *deck* I aint sexist, ill punch you all in the face

Nathan-Rhodes-669 User

Surfers? All I see is a bunch of lemming douche-bags looking to ruin a good time. I'm pretty sure the surfers where partying somewhere else. 

PlunderBeast User

That was CRAZY!  

That guy in the first vid threw newspapers everywhere and they almost got two wheels off the ground of that pickup.

LoKo2k User

Primitive monkey planet we live on.

jobzombi User

The beauty of video editing software...frame by frame white guy, the dude that comes in at the end of the car shaking...the rest brown to black.  Just pointing out facts.

Winchel Yu
Winchel Yu

there was a lack of weed obviously... c'mon it doesn't take a genius to figure that out. ;)

WastedCrit User

Jaytown1212 is totally right. I would be willing to beat that it was a bunch of drunk "bros" from Riverside aka the 909 lol.

pixiesprimecut User

damn soccer hooligans !!!...oh wait a minute...

jaytown1212 User

That main strip is always full of drunk  D-bags who come down to "party"- add the surf comp. to it and i cant say im surprised. I would bet most of the violence was initiated by people not from that local spot by the pier, but all the people who flock there for the party. The sad part is they will just head home, the locals now have to deal with it. simply put, why would local dudes trash their spot-you dont shit where you eat. 

Nicktheman User

No it was the 909 kids who come down and trash it

LostKeys User

Nothing colder than flipping a porto onto its door while someone is taking a shit.. Well I guess it'd be pretty warm.. But... so wrong. 

llga01 User

Most surfers are poor, unemployed, white trash, drug-addicted idiots that voted for comrade obamas!

Wad97 User

Like brah, he called me a doo doo head.

ViralSurvivor User

Surfers protect the store and stop fights. Punks and thugs start shit and run.

Bantham User

So stupid! SO glad I don't live there!

mykylc User

such a calm riot

Buttrocket-McGee User

Totally tubular brah!   And get off my wave, ahole.

justhefacts UserTop Commenter

Looks like its time to go down to the OC and crack some skulls. 

TopGunTrophey User

haha, tough girl yelling at a guy to hit her.


What was the point of the riot? People are stupid. And for this happening at a surf contest. I makes surfing look bad.

budspots User

@TopGunTrophey I hate bitches like that. Acting tough because they think they are untouchable. I don't advocate violence against women but if some bitch was like that to me i'd have no problem shoving her to the ground. I'd never punch a woman or anything like that but these bitches can't just lay into people for no good reason and expect them to just take it.

TopGunTrophey User

@mk3_ftw I disagree.  It wasn't at the beach but a block or so away from the actual contest.