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Tuesday, August 30, 2011
The show will go on

By Jon Coen
ESPN.com

Despite Hurricane Irene cleanup efforts on Long Island, the Quik Pro is slated to go on.
While the Association of Surfing Professionals World Tour was finishing off a historic week at the Billabong Pro Tahiti on Monday, rumors began to spread that the Quiksilver Pro New York, slated for Sept. 4-15 at Long Beach, N.Y., was canceled.

But on Tuesday, Quiksilver officials said the event will run minus certain planned festivities.

On Monday, Long Beach city manager Charles Theofan had told local reporters, "It looks like that portion of the event [a music and action sports festival] that was planned for Quiksilver City is going to be canceled, but the surfing tournament is going to proceed starting Labor Day."

The ASP event is still on. But sources say that at one point in the past two days the City of Long Beach debated pulling the plug on the whole event.

On Monday night, former ASP Tour surfer turned analyst Shea Lopez tweeted, "100% confirmed. #QuikProNY cancelled."
The City of Long Beach cleans up after Hurricane Irene hit on Sunday.
As of late Monday night, one-third of Long Island residents were still without power, according to a report by Newsday, and the city is still cleaning up after Hurricane Irene blasted through Long Island on Sunday.

But residents of Long Beach were adamant that the event must go on, some even planning via Facebook to protest Tuesday morning at City Hall. Many of the sentiments expressed on social media outlets were that of the business sector, which hoped the influx of visitors would make up for a weak tourist season and revenue lost to Hurricane Irene. Sources in Long Beach say the city reversed its decision in the face of public pressure.

"City officials canceled the event as of [Monday night]," Lopez told ESPN. "They gave my friends in Long Beach word that it wasn't happening, but I guess when they figured out that the surf contest infrastructure wasn't as big a production as the whole festival, they knew it was a lot easier that what had been planned. They weren't sure if they could handle all that. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed."

On Tuesday, dates of the trials and the main event were moved back. The trials will now run on Sunday and the main event from Sept. 5-15 -- still much time for an ASP World Tour contest.
Shea Lopez, enjoying the nicer side of Hurricane Irene in Florida.
Quiksilver had planned a village of skateboard and motocross events, and several national headliner bands were slated to play. The trimmed-back schedule could mean the potential for significant financial loss for Quik, although the contest is what mattered to surf fans.

"We're ecstatic that the city and Quiksilver worked out the details to keep the event on, especially with what the city is going through in clean up right now," said Mike Nelson, co-owner of Unsound Surf in Long Beach, the presenting sponsor of the trials.

After Irene, the Atlantic is just warming up. Early Tuesday, Tropical Depression No. 12 became Tropical Storm Katia. This storm could have the ideal path to deliver the kind of hurricane swell Quiksilver is banking on but certainly will be a very powerful storm in the western Atlantic. Early models do not show it making landfall, however.