Swimwear designer and professional kiteboarder Sensi Graves is putting her great talents towards a good cause this summer hosting a fashion show for Athletes for Cancer. The event will take place at REAL watersports in Hatteras, NC, June 7th, 2012. If you are as passionate about kiteboarding as Sensi, here are all the details of the event. It is a great cause and a great crew!


PhotobucketThe Sunset Swim charity fashion show, aims to entertain as well as garner attention

for cancer prevention and awareness. Featuring local designers and boutiques, the
event seeks to wow with local models in loads of stylish swimwear, colorful suits
and skimpy tops and beautiful jewelry and accessories. Additionally, this attractive
event also provides a quality dining experience with sexy entertainment and lots of
prizes and all funds directly benefiting Athletes 4 Cancer.

Mojo’s Sunset Cafe is happy to welcome the 2nd annual Sunset Swim charity runway
event. The night will begin with drinks and auction items while enjoying the sounds
of Mojo Collins. A gourmet, specialty dinner prepared by local chef Steve Meyers will
be available for ticket holders and for purchase throughout the evening. Steve is the
owner of Mojo’s Sunset Café and is known for his abundance of flavor, use of fresh
seafood and Cajun- inspired meals.

While the events fun and flirty atmosphere is in the foreground, we must not forget
the true reason for gathering. The charity fashion show raises money to fund
Athletes for Cancer’s Survivorship Programs for young adults with cancer. All the
money raised directly benefits individuals affected by cancer.


Overall, an evening of fine food, fabulous fashion, fun beats, and loads of giveaways
and auction items. Yet, most importantly, an evening directing attention towards
cancer awareness as well as raising support for an organization that has such a
powerful impact on an individual’s life.

Taking place at REAL Watersports in Waves on June 7th, the doors will open at
6:30 for drinks and socializing. Dinner will commence at 7:00. The fashion show
will begin at 8:30 with dancing and raffle to follow. The cost for the entire evening,
including dinner and raffle ticket is $40. Tickets may be bought in advance and at
the door. Please note, advance purchase tickets ensure VIP seating for the event, a
coveted possession. Raffle ticket only tickets will be sold for $5 each or 5 for $20 at
the door. Tickets are on sale at the following locations: Spa Koru, REAL Watersports.


To learn more about Athletes 4 Cancer, visit their website at

For more information about Sunset Swim, to volunteer or other, please contact Sensi
Graves at info@sensibikinis.com or 805 679-3810


I don’t want to scare all you fellow paddle boarders, but I found this Discovery snippet from Shark Week through my close friend at Red Bull, Pat Stahl. It sure adds another element to stand up paddle boarding…

- Jenna


If you have hung out with me in the past few months, you have undoubtably heard me talking about Nitro City Resort in Panama. From the Nitro Circus umbrella, Travis Pastrana and Red Bull North America’s, Hayes Wheeless bring you an action sports resort beyond our wildest dreams.

“Picture a resort on a peninsula that’s an hour away from everything, quiet, with good food and normal girlfriend or wife stuff to do,” Pastrana says. “But if you want to skydive or ride motocross or use the cable park, you can do that, too.”*

Kite, wake, motocross, surf, windsurf, resort massage, 5 star dinner, some r&r in your chosen action sport themed room, repeat. Just heavenly.


I originally heard about the resort from my partner in Blowme Clothing, who runs Sirlin Enterprises as he has done all the graphics for the resort, from the boat decals to the tees. Josh has already booked his stay for September and it is clear I should probably follow in his footsteps. According to Josh, “you drop your girlfriend off at the pool and go play!”

The resort is described by the website as being the ‘closest white, sandy beach to Panama City.’* Equipped with luxurious beachfront rooms, two restaurants and a bar, a waterfront pool with waterslide, a motocross track, an extreme water sports center and a cable park it is clearly a resort for both worlds. It is Club Med, for adrenaline addicts. When can we get our fix?

According to Hayes Wheeless’s Twitter (Red Bull America and co-founder of the resort), the resort is almost done construction and on the brink of being public ready. I can hear the excitement building just among the kiteboarding pro community as I cover the Rosham Throwdown this week in Hood River.

“Tell me when it is open and I will book my trip tomorrow,” Slingshot pro rider and South east rep for wake and kite, Matthew Sexton replies excitedly to hearing about the resort for the time yesterday. He turns to the line of pros beside him, “who is in?” I spread the word to Jason Slezak and Sam Bell of Real Kiteboarding (on Liquid Force and Naish pro team consecutively), ‘you in boys?’ Nothing but thumbs from the kiteboarding front lines.

As I peruse through the Nitro City Facebook I see nothing but upcoming events in all the action sport disciplines. Wake dayz, Kite-cross, and notably past: Travis Pastrama skydiving in to announce the upcoming opening (http://www.youtube.com/v/7ZqToVVpqVQ?version=3). My gosh, the excitement is so high I can barely type this. And the room rates, all very affordable:

Preparing to get my adrenaline fix in Panama City as we speak…


Tunes for this post: Benny Benassi


Story and interview by Jenna Hannon
The Real crew is Real. It’s not just punny. These are some of the best kiteboarder’s in the world gathering together at one of the best spots in the United States, Hatteras NC, willing to teach what they know for peanuts just to live, breath, and kite daily. Did I mention some of the best surfing on the East coast about 500 yards away from one of the best kite spots. Daaaaaammmnnn son.

The geography.

Cape Hatteras is on the coast of North Carolina. Two major Atlantic currents of differing temperatures collide just off Cape Hatteras, the Labrador Current and the Florida current(Gulf Stream), creating large expanse of shallow sandbars extending up to 14 miles offshore (great for beginning kiters). The island combines waves on one side with flat water in the sound about 500 feet away on the other side. The way the island is shaped makes for ideal kiting and surfing of all levels and distinguished expertise. All glory but warning, there is no liquor license anywhere on the island so if you plan on being the town drunk bring your own supply.

The Crew.

Real kiteboarding is one of the most respected names in kiteboarding instruction and retail. Local pro riders and the Real team include Jason Slezak, Sam Bell, Brendan Scheid, Claire Lutz, and Lulu Vroman.
I must admit there is a great crew out here. With pro rider’s Jason Slezak, Sam Bell, and great female riders Laura Vroman and Claire Lutz there is no shortage of inspiring talent on the water. I had the pleasure of meeting the crew (photographer Brian Elkus and rider Chris Stuckey) included over some drunken freestyle bowling. A game so intense that I split my pants down the middle! No matter what the level is on the water, off the water the crew mingles and jokes around like an after school program. Great kiting and great people.

The instruction.

So I sat down with one this fall’s Real kiteboard coach and a close friend from the summer in the Columbia Gorge, Hood River, Oregon, Brian Thomas to get the peanut butter vanilla cream scoop.

Jenna: Let’s start with the general. Why Real Kiteboarding Hatteras, NC?

Brian: The conditions and the wind. You are able to kite in the shallow sound or walk five minutes and kite the ocean. Pretty epic.

Jenna: Walk me through the lesson options. Beginner to advanced.

Brian: First lesson. Ground control (an hour and a half total). One hour trainer and a half hour(ish) of learning the anatomy of an LEI (leading edge inflatable) kite depending on the learner of course. Safety features explanation included. $100.
Next lesson. Water time. We take the student out in waste deep water and show them how o fly the kite, body dragging, and power stroking. And more safety features of course. Two hour lesson. $250.
Next. The Double Down. Just getting up on the board. Both ways. $250.
From there we have lessons from transitioning, to boosting, to starter tricks. (from $150- $250)
We also offer camps and light wind activities.

Jenna: Camps for kids or adults?

Brian: Both. We have kites of all sizes, even as small as three meters, so it doesn’t matter the size of the rider.

Jenna: Can you give me a price range for camps?

Brian: Depending on activity. It’s an investment into the future and that is priceless.
Jenna: I hit the net. Here we are: From $1195 to $1295 for 3 full day camps.

Jenna: Tell me about the zero to hero camp?

Brian: A three day camp where you can get 6 lessons in one. It can take you from not knowing how to fly a kite to a complete self-sufficient rider.

Jenna: What does the camp encompass?

Brian: It covers ground control, water time, double down, board riding, and life of a kiter (how to repair and etiquette. Stuff you don’t ask but should know). Self launch and landing is more advanced and is not included in this one.

Jenna: How is renting gear for kiting? How about surfboards at Real?

Brian: Real is a lot different than other places in the country where you can’t rent kites straight up, period. Depending on the student we can find something that can fit your needs without having to jump through hoops to get it.

Jenna: What happens if you have a kitemare?

Brian: Like all other things in life, you break it you buy it a.k.a. you just got yourself a new kite… Jenna: And an airtime repair ticket!

Jenna: Surferboards?

Brian: A big selection. Also stand up paddle boards, skim boards, and boogie boards.

Jenna: When is the best time to hit Real to learn to go pro?

Brian: When it’s windy! It is usually less crowded on shoulder seasons but much warmer in the summer. Depends on how committed you are and your luxury standards.

Jenna: It is also much busier in the summer, right?

Brian: In the summer it can get intense! In the shoulder season’s it is mainly just kiter’s. I like to avoid crowds and you are in good company in the shoulder seasons.

Jenna: What makes Real one of the best places to learn?

Brian: The jet ski assisted instruction is a pretty awesome option. Did I mention the 10 miles of waist deep water. Oh and optimal instruction with fine tuned methods of working with new students and experienced students.

Jenna: Emotional question…you have taught for Hood River Water Sports in Oregon and for Real in Hatteras. Where would be the more ideal place to learn and (like the exam question which makes us squirm) why?

Brian: The more ideal place to learn or more ideal place to shred?
Jenna: Both.
Brian: Strictly for kiting purposes then Hatteras. Smoother, stabbler and safer. For all action sports Hood River. You can go mountain biking, kiting and snowboarding all in the same day.

Jenna: As far as instruction?

Brian: Each there own perks. It is great to mix up places. Real is great for people who have no kite experience because you are able to spread out in shallow water. Hood is a little more restricted so as far as safety there is that benefit in avoiding the kite challenged.
Jenna: I had many problems finding a place to body drag in Hood. You end up at the end of the sandbar doing the walk of shame.
Brian: Real has great resources as well. From knowledge to every size kite imaginable. Everyone at Real kiteboards so no matter who you talk to you are going to get great advice.

Jenna: Last question matey, who are the most inspiring and fun rider’s to watch at Real?

Brian: When rider’s Brandon and Nick throw down mega loops its pretty insane. Although, I don’t watch many people I kite! It’s my own little zone but there is lot’s of great talent out there.
Jenna: Cool beans.
Brian: And remember dvds aren’t substitute for lessons so no matter where you go make sure you learn the proper safety and get proper instruction.

Jenna: On that note, can you give u a personal kitemare story?

Brian: The first time I tried to go kiting in Hood River after watching all the older dvds (well current when I bought them I guess) and buying a kite off ebay I had a complete disaster. I had a lot of experience wakeboarding and I went down to the sand bar in front of the “spit” all cocky. Although, I watched all the older dvds and in those times the kites were two line or did not have the ability to depower (where as I was flying a four line) and designed to be unhooked, so that is exactly what I did.
I unhooked immediately after launching and I was dragged fifty feet downwind along the gravel only to have my chicken loop eventually grabbed by someone who was able to hook back in to land the kite. Needless to say, I went back up to the beach and watched. I was a trainwreck. This is exactly why dvds are not a sustitute!
Jenna: We appreciate the embarrassing tales and advice Brian and don’t worry we have all had our fair share of kitemares. They don’t call me kitemare Barbie in Hood River for nothing!

The roundabout.

After riding head height barrels at S Spin and kite looping consistent wind in the sound you may be able to roll over to pro rider Jason Slezak’s digs for a hillbilly skatesesh on his mini ramp/bowl/somewhat skatble structure. I must warn you though, it has locally proclaimed “Jason Slezak coping” meaning if you are not Jason Slezak this is the gnarliest large metal piping atop a mini ramp you have ever seen. The extension into a bowl on the left side of the ramp also requires fisher price Tonka truck wheels to get back on to the main mini pipe. On a good note, after a sesh following a surf and kite you have officially outdone god in godliness and we will all bow down to the fact that you probably exceeded more fun units than a normal person can handle (don’t explode keep calm).
On a travel guide note, if you are a foodie, Cape Hatteras is not the destination for you. I ate from Liberty gas station all trip so I can’t give you the 5 star food guide. Although, by the looks of it there is not much around. One grocery store about a twenty minute drive away and about 5 cafes. Nothing fancy or probably worth paying for. You can’t even get a cheese burger around here. Although it does have the potential to test your grilling skills.

Kitesurfing in Cape Hatteras, NC Fall 2009 from Real Watersports on Vimeo.




Snow Report 


Stoke of the past 



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