Freelance writer with a BA double majoring in Literature and Australian History who loves finding random places of social or historical treasure whilst travelling around visiting festivals, markets and quaint cafes with my husband and baby
Does a day watching sun-drenched bodies surfing sound good?
Over the Easter long weekend the Windandsea Surf Club at Moffatt Beach, Caloundra, will again host the Pa and Ma Bendall Memorial Surfing Contest.
If you're stuck for ideas to fill the leisurely hours over Easter, then consider a day trip to Moffatt Beach, just an hour's drive from Brisbane to watch the 40th anniversary of this surfing classic competition. Let's face it, Caloundra is a destination in itself, and throw in the Queensland sun and beautiful beach, and you've got a wonderful day out. Did I mention the sun-bleached and tanned guys and girls surfing up a storm in this historic annual competition?
The facilities at Moffatt Beach are more than adequate, although picnic tables and chairs are a little scant. There is plenty of grass and beach though to bring a blanket or towel along and watch the festivities. For the more adventurous, the Moffatt Beach cliffs provide a good vantage point to see all of the action.
Moffatt Beach has a lot of restaurants and cafes which make for a lovely breakfast, brunch or lunch, and of course Caloundra, Kings Beach and Shelley Beach are only a couple of minutes drive away and provide lovely places to stop and have a bite to eat or coffee.
Now in it's 40th year, the Pa and Ma Bendall Surfing Contest, is a tribute to the father and mother of Queensland surfing. This year promises to be bigger than ever with organisers reportedly pulling out all of the stops!
During the 1950's Charles Ben (Pa) Bendall and his wife Marjorie (Ma) Bendall moved to Caloundra and quickly became the centre of surfing on the Sunshine Coast, being amongst only a handful of local regular surfers at the time. After establishing the "Moffatteers" in 1966 Pa Bendall encouraged local youths to take up surfing by offering them free membership to the surfing club and assisting them with training to enter local and state competitions.
Pa Bendall passed away in 1973 and the first Pa Bendall Memorial Surfing Competition was held in 1974 offering what was then record breaking prize money of $1500. Nowadays the prize money offered for the Pa and Ma Bendall Memorial contest doesn't even compare to that offered on the surfing circuit by the big clubs and promotions but the tradition lives on.
The contest draws surfers from everywhere and is well respected.
Whether you're a good surfer or have never even held a board, sitting beachside at Moffatt Beach to watch the competition makes a lovely day out. There are a few markets to be found here as well as food vendors, and numerous surfing related stalls.
Couple your day out with breakfast on the beach or lunch at one of the many cafes and restaurants in the area.
For more information on competition start times and results see the Windandsea Surf Club website.
What a lovely couple they must have been and such a fitting memorial. I did some further reading and found Ma's motto to life:
1. You can do anything if you really want to.
2. Never miss an opportunity for the good.
3. They say? What say they? Let them say!