Encinitas-based and Grammy-award winning rockers Switchfoot will host their eight annual Bro-Am charity surf contest and concert on June 16 at Moonlight Beach. The free event, which raises money for local chapters of a nationwide charity aimed at helping homeless and at-risk teens, is part celebrity surf contest, part rock concert, and part street fair with dozens of vendor booths.
The Bro-Am is also a day that Switchfoot’s lead singer and Encinitas resident, Jon Foreman, circles on his calendar every year.
“The Bro-Am has been my favorite day of the year ever since we started it back in ’05,” Foreman said. "To see our hometown come together to help out a deserving group of kids is an incredible experience — surfing, music, and the San Diego scene at its best. We feel truly honored to again partner with StandUp For Kids, an incredible organization serving at-risk youth here in San Diego and across the country. Last year was our biggest year ever, and we hope to top it again this year."
StandUp For Kids is a national nonprofit volunteer outreach organization founded in San Diego that is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of at-risk, homeless, and street kids.
Since its founding in 2005, the Bro-Am has raised more than $515,000 for San Diego-based children's charities, according to organizers. An estimated 10,000 people are expected at this year’s event.
Stuff to Do
The surf contest, held just south of at the foot of the E Street, is a highlight of the day. The surfing begins at 7 a.m., ends at 3:30 p.m. and features heats of four surfers competing at a time.
Members of Switchfoot—Foreman, his brother/bassist Tim Foreman and drummer Chad Butler—are expected to surf, along with and other big names from the surfing world.
For the first time, this year’s Bro-Am will feature the Rob Machado Bro Junior. The event is open to youngsters ages 16 and under who must sign up to enter at the Solana Beach Surf Ride location, 325 North Coast Highway 101. Young surfers will compete on one of Rob Machado's boards and rather than paying an entrance fee, entrants should bring a piece of gently used surf clothing to the beach on competition day.
“I'm super stoked to be a part of the Bro-Am," said Machado. “I've surfed in the event, jumped on stage, and jammed with the Switchfoots. Now I'm honored to be directly involved with the event. It's gonna be fun watching the kids riding all kinds of different boards—including some of my own. Can't wait.”
Beach vendors who will have booths at the event include title sponsor Hurley, Ultimate Ears, official retail partner Surf Ride, Slurpee, Wahoo's, Harney Sushi, Jedidiah, INT, Clif Bar, Honest Tea, Bull Taco, East Coast Pizza, Pizza Port, Daphne's, Alaska Airlines, HOC, Inc., Natural High, Surfrider Foundation, Keep A Breast, To Write Love On Her Arms, and The Ecology Center, organizers said.
This year's beach event will again be a “single-use plastic water bottle-free event,” so attendees are encouraged to bring a re-usable water bottle and fill up at the water station for free.
The music goes on from noon to 5 pm on a stage set up on the sand at Moonlight Beach. The concert is headlined by Jon Foreman and Friends (hint: it’s actually Switchfoot, but the band must play under another name due to contractual obligations with the nearby San Diego County Fair, where the band plays the night before.)
Other bands set to take the stage at the Bro-Am are: Dead Feather Moon, Le Blorr, Brandon and Leah, and Makua Rothman
How to Get There
You could always drive and park in downtown Encinitas, but if you do so, plan on getting there early, as the free street parking tends to fill up fast. The City Hall parking lot at 505 S. Vulcan Ave. may be an option.
There is a free shuttle from , 800 Santa Fe Drive, where both Foreman brothers attended. That shuttle will run between 10:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. For those coming from outside the local area, the Coaster commuter train stops in Encinitas, just a few blocks from the Bro-Am.