Snapper’s half century

50 years is a great achievement for anyone, let alone a boardriders club. Right across the worldwide surfing community, the official call is going out to locate members of the famous and proud, Snapper Rocks Surfriders. On the weekend of the Friday 29 and Saturday 30 August, members and supporters of the great Gold Coast surfing club from eras past and present will gather for an almighty reunion.

One of the most decorated board riding clubs in Australian surfing history, Snapper Rocks Surfriders Club, will be celebrating its 50th nniversary.

Snapper has had more world champions than any club could hope for.

Starting with the first ever Women’s World Champion, Phyllis O’Donnell in their formation year of 1964, to dual Women’s and Men’s World Champions in 2012 with Stephanie Gilmore and Joel Parkinson (pictured above,courtesy ASP). In between this: 1976 World Champion Peter Townend, 1978 World Champion Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew, plus multiple junior, amateur, and grommet World Champions.

Graeme Merrin was the first President from 1964-1973, and the first year the club had 209 pounds, 15 shillings and 9 pence in the bank. To list all the legendary members of this club I would need an encyclopedia, legendary presidents include Terry “Ween” Baker, Wayne Deane, Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew, Bruce Lee, and today’s Jay Phillips.

The club has an enormous history and much lauded participation in the sport of surfing, and have three members still on the World Tour to this day. Snapper Rocks Surfriders truly set the bar of achievement for all boardriding clubs to follow, and boy are they going to celebrate this for their 50th birthday!

To mark the mammoth occasion the club has a wave (see what we did there) of events planned across a weekend of revelry and reunion. These include a sportsperson’s lunch and auction called the Snapper 50 Rocks Luncheon, with all proceeds to Snapper’s junior surf development program. The three course luncheon will be held on Friday 29 August at Rainbow Bay Surf Club, and all are welcome to attend.

There will also be a past and present members beach fun day for Snapper’s extended family on Saturday 30 August: a great get together for those young and old.

Then that night, Saturday 30 August will be the big party. It will be a retro-themed night of celebration at the 50th Reunion and Anniversary from 4.00pm at Rainbow Bay Surf Club.

Snapper Rocks Surfriders Club is also on the hunt for archival images or video footage from Snapper club events or competitions to compile a slideshow that will be screened over the weekend’s festivities, and is calling on past members and the wider community to send in any contributions.

It is looking like a massive weekend of surfing, fun and memories, with all wishing the Snapper Rocks Surfriders well.

Happy 50th birthday Snapper, from all of us at Blank.

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Tickets for Friday’s luncheon and auction are $100 and include a three course luncheon and drink package. Special guests include world champion surfers including Snapper’s own Joel Parkinson and members of the Gold Coast Titans. Corporate tables are available, for bookings contact Rainbow Bay Surf Club on 07 5536 6390.

Tickets for the Saturday evening 50th Reunion and Anniversary are just $50 plus booking fees and include a limited edition cap, t-shirt, retro buffet and refreshments. Tickets can be purchased at Cafe D’Bar, Rainbow Bay Surf Club, Volcom Surf Shop as well as online at

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