Aikau family: ‘Eddie’ won’t go this season

By AUDREY McAVOY

The Associated Press

HONOLULU — The family of surfing legend Eddie Aikau said Wednesday the big wave contest named in his honor won’t be held this season.

The withdrawal of the contest’s sponsor, Quiksilver, and problems quickly getting a permit forced the move, said Cynthia Scrima, a family spokeswoman.

The Aikaus eventually obtained a permit for the event from Honolulu’s Department of Parks and Recreation, but Scrima said they don’t have sufficient time and resources to plan and hold the event this winter.

“It really is the most prestigious surf contest in the world. And we did not want to compromise that because it ultimately would be compromising Eddie’s integrity to not do something proper,” Scrima said.

The family hopes to hold “The Eddie” during the 2018-2019 season. Scrima said the Aikaus have already applied for a permit for next season and have been searching for a new lead sponsor.

Scrima said it took longer for the organizers to get up to speed with permitting because Quiksilver wasn’t involved. She said Quiksilver handled the permit application process in previous years. Scrima said the city has “been fantastic” since the permit paperwork got to the right people.

The event, held at Waimea Bay on Oahu’s North Shore only when waves hit 20 feet or higher, has been run nine times since 1985. Oahu’s John John Florence won the last “Eddie,” held in February 2016.