Words by John Streit. Photos by Heather Bautista, Colin Breland & Ethan Micele.

I humbly submit to you, the reader, “An Ode to Virginia Beach.”

Time and time again, our hometown is listed online as “One of the best places to insert lifestyle activity here,” but you’re not likely to find “surf” as the subject of any of those lists. A certain local surf shop of world fame even claims that Virginia has no waves; and while that’s definitely an exaggeration, we all know what they mean. That’s why “going down South” has been as integral a part of Virginia Beach surf culture as paddle-battling for a First Street peak. Let’s face it: North Carolina has the better waves, and that’s just science ala Ron Burgundy. No debate. Case closed.

And I’m not here to debate this. What I would like to do is present an ode to my hometown, however wave-deprived and swell-sapping our shores may be.

Sure, it might be waist- to chest-high with a little something weird going on here while the Outer Banks sits on the beachbreak throne, but they are our waves to enjoy. It’s just that much more special to catch your home break firing as its forecast to in the coming days. Enjoy every moment Virginia Beach yields fun surf, because those days can be few and far between. Enjoy those windy-but-fun days that offer up chunky slingshots and ripable sections while points south are victory-at-sea. Just enjoy surfing!

So for all of those surfers that can’t make the pilgrimage to the hallowed sands of the Outer Banks for Hurricane Gonzalo’s swell, remember…

Virginia DOES have waves, and its about to get really FUN! To celebrate, here are a few photos from recent sessions from the North End down to Croatan Beach.

Heather Bautista captures a magical moment at 42nd Street on Saturday, Oct. 4; the same day that yielded most of the images in the "October's Opener" feature. Sure, this one is smaller than its OBX counterparts, but no less enticing. Photo: Bautista.
Evan Micele is right at home against the rocks at First Street Jetty. Photo: Micele. Edit: Montgomery.
Evan is constantly working on his competitive skills at First Street, which has served as a proving ground for several generations of Va. Beach rippers. Photo: Micele. Edit: Montgomery.
Evan Micele with style that outshines the early morning glare. Photo: Micele. Edit: Montgomery.
It's awesome to see Evan develop such a strong rail surfing game at age 16. Photo: Micele. Edit: Montgomery.
Evan negotiates the crowded lineup at the jetty. Photo: Micele. Edit: Montgomery.
Croatan Jetty in classic form: plenty of peaks and angles. Photo: Breland.
Bryce Humphrey blasts off of this Croatan launch pad. Photo: Breland.
Joshua Carolino cuts it back by the rocks. Photo: Breland.
Backside rock-n-roll from yours truly, John Streit. Photo: Breland.
This wave demonstrates why you need a high-volume board in your quiver. I went to my trusty Valaric rocket fish to power through this day's shifting faces and flat section, and had some fun! Photo: Breland.
A small windswell preview of the weekend ahead. First Street, Thursday, Oct. 16. Photo: Breland.
A masterfully ridden wave by S&A team rider Ricky Judalena capture in a masterfully composed image by Colin Breland.
There's a good left at First Street, too, and Joshua Carolino knows all about it. Photo: Breland.
Joshua fades in as we sign off. Photo: Breland.

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