Duke’s Day: honouring Duke Kahanamoku

(January 8-10 2015)


And a BIG thankyou and Aloha to all out fantastic Sponsors:


See below for some great photos and videos taken during the event:

The Gala Dinner:


The Lei Draping:

On the Beach 

In the Park:

Salute to the Sun

100yr Board Display

Talk Stories

Duke and Isabel (Duane and Lilly):


Click on this link for the beautiful video clip of the Re-enactment made by Craig Baird from the Australian National Surfing Museum in Torquay.



The photo above (curtesy Darryl Bullock) shows the Re-Enactment Crew in their Period Clothing (Cast includes -Duane de Soto as Duke; Tom Myers as Claude west, Lilly McDonald as Isabel Letham and Eric Middledorp as Don McIntyre as they were back in the summer of 1914/15!

The Centenary re-enactment aimed at  covering some of the many surfing demonstrations, undertaken by Duke during his visit.  But not all occurred during his 10 January 1915 exhibition at Freshwater.  In fact, newspaper reports of the time state that the Tandem surfing with Isabel actually occured on 6 February 1915 at Dee Why beach.  You may wish to refer to the very informative SurfResearch website for full description of Duke's 1914/15 visit to Australia.

Celebrating our community’s love and respect for the ocean and the environment, the 100th year anniversary of Duke Kahanamoku's surfing demonstration!  

Igniting Australia’s Surf Culture and the spirit of Aloha!



It is the morning of 10 January 1915. A crowd of people, representative of a young Australian nation, at Freshwater beach witness the spark that ignites a passion for the surf and a beach culture that has identified this nation to this day.


 Duke walking up the beach to the original Surf Club.

Duke's Day is a day to honour & revere the father of surfing in Australia - Duke Kahanamoku. It is a day to raise awareness, kindness and living in harmony with the coastal environment much in the way of Duke's philosophy.

The Duke's Days have been planned as a fabulous event on the anniversary of Duke’s first Australian surfing demonstration (or nearest Saturday), and has been organised by the Surf Nomes with support from Freshwater SLSC, Eco Divers and the Freshwater Boardriding Clubs on behalf of the wider Surfing Community. The inaugural Duke's Day was held on Saturday 15th January 2011 and we are looking forward to the Duke's Day Celebrations 8-10 January  2015

Duke's Day 2015 Celebration Activities

It is in this spirit the Freshwater Surfing Community invite all to attend the celebration of this one in 100 Years' weekend of ‘surf-riding’, surf and beach culture with two days of events and exhibitions at Freshwater Beach.
January 9 and 10, 2015 will provide anyone who enjoys the Ocean and the Beach, swimmers, surfers and non-surfers, and the entire family with something to share and enjoy including surf-riding exhibitions by male and female surfers and champions on all kinds of surf craft and bodysurfing representative of this 100 year journey.
On the beach non-competitive exhibitions of all forms of surf-riding including Ancient Hawaiian Olo’s, the 16 ft. boards weighing 150 lbs. ridden by Hawaiian Kings, Alai’a’s and Paipo’s that were ridden by the common man and woman back in the day; today’s male and female long and short board, tandem, Stand Up Paddling, bodysurfing, canoe riding and celebrity tag team fun. And a salute to our future with a boys and girls grommet exhibition. One of the main beach highlights will be the re-enactment of that mid-morning event 100 years ago by surfers from Hawaii. And if that was not enough, surfing lessons for those who have been keen to try by pros both Friday and Saturday.

In the club house and in the park, Australia’s most unique collection of 100 years of surfboards on display, a visual history of our surfing history and the men and women who shaped it. Ocean and Environmentally sustainable workshops, art and photography exhibits, presentations, history, swap and collectable memorabilia market, fashion and surfboard shaping and classic Kombi’s galore.

Hawaiian and Australian events that showcase our cultures, and culminating on Saturday night with live music and an outdoor screening of the film ‘A Deeper Shade of Blue’, fresh from a critically acclaimed global tour. The award winning film called the “Greatest Surfing Story Ever Told” is about Hawaiian Surf Culture, the Evolution of the Surfboard, and the spirit of Aloha.

Many of events and attractions are FREE to the Public!

Click here for location MAP showing accommodation, transport and venue details!!

Win a new Panasonic HD camera for Duke Shorts Video Exhibition. Click here for more information:    CALLING ALL VIDEO ARTISTS

Click here for the proposed DUKE’S DAY Schedule of Events.

DUKE’S DAY Sponsorship Opportunities

We are hoping that you and your company will see the value of supporting and being associated with this non-profit, one time only, Duke’s Day 100 year Celebration.

You may wish to provide sponsorship for a specific event, or choose to support the whole broader Program.

It is expected that the weekend attendance may reach over 5,000 visitors which will provide great exposure for your company and products.  Your company brand/logo can also appear on our web sites prior to the event also providing you with additional exposure to the local and global audience!. 
Thanking you in advance for your time and consideration, always with Aloha.
The Duke’s Day Committee
For further information please contact:
Stephen Bennett
sbennett@wynnbennett.com.au ph 0413747576

Donations: -if you are simply wishing to give a donation to Freshwater SLSC to assist in the running of the Duke's Day, please click on this Donation Form.  Thank you!

Duke board replica off to Hawaii

One of the main Events of the Centenary Celebrations will be to stage a re-enactment of the legendary surfing exhibition which Duke Kahanamoku undertook at Australia’s Freshwater Beach on the 10th January 1915.

To ensure authenticity of the re-enactment, an exact  Replica of Duke’s 100 year old board has been painstakingly made by master craftsmen, Glenn, and his apprentice son Tom Myers. Click here for video footage of Glenn and Tom crafting the Duke Replica.  The Original Duke Board is too precious a world surfing icon to ever again be exposed to any possibility of danger or damage. 

This true Replica has recently been taken to Hawaii to be part of the annual Waikiki “Duke OceanFest”.  Hardworking members of the Centenary Organising group, including Steve and Judy Bennett, Naomi Wilson, Tim Hatton (President of the Freshwater Boardriders), Eric Middledorp (Replica –Kahu) along with our photographer Gemma Pigott, volunteered for the daunting task of approaching appropriate Hawaiian Surfers to play the role of the Duke during the re-enactment.

With the help of legendary Hawaiian Surfers such as Brian Keaulana, several Hawaiian surfers were contacted to trial the Board.  All indicated that riding the Board was no easy task and were in awe of the abilities of the Duke, who was able to ride that style of board with consummate ease.


Naomi, Eric, Judy, Tim and Steve at Wakiki Duke OceanFest Aug 2014

Alika Willis (3rd Generation Beach Boy Lifeguard) -first Hawaiian to sucessfully ride Replica.


Hawaiian World Champ surfer, Duane De Soto, showing how Duke did it 100 yrs ago (bottom photo courtsey Outrigger Beach Hotel lifeguard - (click here for Richard David Desautel II footage).  Click here to see Richie's footage of Duane riding the Australian Replica Duke Surfboard (tandem with his daughter) at Waikiki during 2014 Duke OceanFest.  The Hawaiian surfer who will be taking part in the re-enactment will be unveiled closer to the event. Click here for Duke OceanFest Interview.

Thanks again to Hawaiian Air for their support in transporting the Replica Duke Surfboard to Duke OceanFest at Waikiki August 2014.  Also thanks to all in Hawaii especially the Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Foundation for  all their support and hospitality whist our group was visiting the Duke OceanFest. 



We would like to thank our generous sponsors for their great support (we are in the process of including additional Sponsor's details on the wesite):

Our local Bendigo Bank continue to be a Sponsor of Duke's Day
since 2011.






- Thanks to Panasonic for their
generous sponsorship.  
This also includes a fabulous
Panasonic Still/Video camera
valued at $2000 to the winner
of the 'Duke' Short Film Festival!

Click here for details on the
Panasonic HD Camera 



Duke's Day is proudly supported by:



Sponsor of -Celebrity Surf Tag


"ClearCost is a software business
with roots in Freshwater and
now a proud sponsor of the
Duke’s 100
th anniversary."



Thanks to our Gala Dinner Sponsor


Welcome on board to our 'brand' new sponsor:





Royal Wolf custom made containers
to meet every requirement.



Thanks again to our long term
sponsor Harbord Diggers Club
who are sponsoring the
Duke re-enactment



Thanks to Nikki and Trevor at
SOLID RACKS for providing their Display Racks



Our long term sponsor continues to provide support:



Thanks to Dan and Ian at DJBee
Surfboards and Surf Decals for the
great Mini Mal!


Aloha Hawaiian Air -
sponsors of our
Gala Dinner






And thanks to SNP Security for making
it a safe Event:





Thanks to Ava Party Hire




For more information please email us at: info@dukesday or check the Duke's Day website: www.dukesday

Or join us on Duke's Day Facebook.