With Jonty Rhodes, leading indie musicians and yoga experts at the third edition of the Covelong Point Classic Surf & Music Festival today, are you there yet?
LOOKING for an excuse to catch the swell at Kovalam? For those who missed the recently concluded India Surf Festival, the third edition of the Covelong Point Classic Surf & Music Festival promises lots of surfing, some music, yoga and food stalls to keep you lingering along the coast this weekend. Together with organisers Arun Vasu of TT Group and Yotam Agam of EarthSync, fisherman-turned-surfer Murthy Megavan presents the three-day festival that has expanded to host the first ever Asian Surfing Championship from September 19-20.
This is besides the national surfing competition held on September 17-18. “This year will be big — it’s the first time India is hosting the Asian Surfing Championship which is very exciting for the sport in India. We have Jonty Rhodes joining us at the festival as the surf ambassador, as well as actor Arya and so many incredible artistes and musicians,” says Agam. With over 130 surfers participating this time, including about 25 international participants (from countries like Australia, Spain and Hong Kong) and the top 16 Indian surfers taking part in the Asian surfing circuit, Vasu says, “It is a great opportunity for Indian surfers to keep raising their levels of excellence. In fact, we’ve seen the level of surfing increase each year, which is a fantastic development for the sport in India.”
Though registrations are closed now, the national surf competition is free for Indian surfers to register and compete at, while the ASC international surf competition charges a $35 registration fee. And Megavan quickly adds, “It is exciting to see that we have managed to get the government’s attention by conducting surfing competitions and by training children in our school. With surf tourism evolving in Covelong, it can influence a positive change.” Also expect a catamaran race for fishermen on Sunday at 3 pm.
From today, till September 20, 7 am to 9 pm. Details: covelongpoint.com
On the go
So what if you don’t surf? Get set to participate in a series of recreational activities with friends and family — kayak race, water gun fights, beach volleyball tournaments, and a rangoli competition for women are some of the activities. IndiEarth On Screen will also host outdoor screenings in the village, featuring a blend of Indian and international cinema.
Introducing music to children from the fishing village, the Rhapsody Music Foundation, led by Anil Srinivasan, has been conducting A Cappella vocal classes every weekend. “This time we have chosen 20 children between seven and 14, giving them an opportunity to perform at the IndiEarth Open Stage. They are trained by our faculty member, Srinivasan,” says Anil, adding that the children are thrilled to be taking part.
Yoga Shala Besides yoga, unwind with meditation, dance and art workshops open to the public on the Yoga Stage. This section will be led by DoGood services (Sandra Schultze and Agam), that includes yoga by Divya Rolla, Mansi Gandhi and Joshna Ramakrishna. For the Yoga Shala workshops — a three-day pass is Rs 2,000, day pass is Rs 1,000, and single entry to one of the workshops is Rs 350.
Catch of the day
As at any festival, food stalls are a highlight. “We have Tryst Cafe and Subway setting up stalls, Anglo Aunties offering traditional pork curry and rice, and Amadora ice cream too. People from the fishing community will have stalls offering tea, fish fry and fish curry, while Out of the Blue will put up a special surfing-inspired menu offering crumbed pork chops with mash to beef burgers,” says Vasu. There will also be crafts stalls like Avec Moi (paper handicrafts) and Wellpaper (Auroville handicrafts), tarot card readings, surf board and equipment stalls like SAE and scuba dive shacks like Barefoot Scuba.
3 stages, 32 bands
Amping the party by introducing three stages this year — they have The Beach Stage (right next to the ocean), the IndiEarth Open Stage (an experimental stage for all artistes interested in performing at the festival) and the Yoga Stage. “Focus is on alternative, world and roots music,” says Agam. Besides the much anticipated folk/rock band Swarathma, this year also has Mounawar from Reunion Island, a Sufi devotional act by The Nagore Boys and garage rock acts like Skrat. The Yoga Stage focuses on soulful, classical and spiritual music with artistes like TM Krishna and violinist Padma Shankar performing. Founder of Oikyotaan, Bonnie Chakraborty, who loves adventure sports, says, “Expect raw Indian folk music with a contemporary twist. Performing by the sea is beautiful and peaceful and since this is our first time, we are really looking forward to our time here.”
From 5 pm to 9 pm. Entry is free.
Mayuri J Ravi