Blessed with wall to wall sunshine and rising air temperatures, the Shore Watersports demo weekend was a complete runaway success.

Featuring kit from Perception Kayaks Europe, Islander Kayaks, Wilderness Systems, Ocean Kayak, Tiki Surf, NSP SUP, Nah Skwell SUP and O’Neill Wetsuits – all the toys were in constant rotation with a steady throng of punters all lining up to have bash at dabbling with a paddle.

The team were also present – doing their bit and helping to spread some paddle stoke.

(Video courtesy of Callis Makes Films, music courtesy of local Portsmouth artist Shipton).


Outdoor events in the UK are completely at the mercy of the inclement weather – even more so if you’re gathering happens to focus on watersports.

During the run up to this year’s Shore Watersports demo weekend the forecast was changeable to say the least. It’s no secret that, so far, 2013 has failed to deliver in terms of classic BBQ conditions – which is exactly what was needed for this particular event.

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And yet, with just days to go, the planets aligned and those magic star ratings began registering 5 plus – could we be that lucky?

After the wash out of 2012 every member of Shore’s staff must have made sacrifices to the Gods, danced weather dances and crossed everything they could. Whatever rituals went down, it worked – Saturday dawned with glorious sunshine and the Shore Watersports demo weekend was officially on!

Toys galore

Beach demos can sometimes be a frustratingly ad hoc affair where a bunch of unenthusiastic staff reluctantly hand over kit to a frothing general public. A hint of disorganisation usually permeates across these get togethers but not so with the Shore Watersports demo weekend.

Even though the event was of a modest scale compared to some, the guys from Shore had done an exemplary job with enticing brands and their representatives down for the weekend. Along with the crew helping with on water marshalling many key brands were on hand to field inquires.

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Perception Kayaks Europe, Islander Kayaks, Wilderness Systems Kayaks, Ocean Kayak, Tiki Surf, Nah Skwell SUP, NSP SUP, Indo Board and not forgetting O’Neill Wetsuits all put in a good showing with reps from each company answering a plethora of questions and dishing out much sought after advice.

All through the weekend demo kit was in constant rotation and with smiles beaming the Shore Watersports demo weekend will go down as a resounding success.

The experience

For the Shore Watersports demo weekend was a way to get involved with a proactive local company (Shore) and help out with one of their events. Having the opportunity to try a whole heap of kit, make some new friends and generally have a good time were all added bonuses.

Chatting to the many visitors proved to be an invaluable exercise in learning about what the sit on kayaking audience wants, needs and opinions are. This kind of banter will only help to strengthen its already solid foundations and position as site THE go to area for all things sit on kayak.

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Feedback and comments only serve in helping to make the brand stronger.

Back to the weather

The conditions on the water for the Shore Watersports demo weekend were varied to say the least. As mentioned, Saturday was a scorcher with a slight NW breeze puffing across the East Wittering shoreline.

This increased slightly through the day and helped to pump up a bit of chop that saw a few surfy rides being had all the way up to high tide.

Sunday dawned with a squiffy sea mist rolling in that dispersed around 11am at which point the sun put his hat back on and once again began blazing down. The breeze during Sunday afternoon increased and made for some fun onshore waves and foam to play in.

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Many visitors out paddling got a great understanding of which boats were stable and which weren’t!

A resounding success

The Shore Watersports demo weekend was a resounding success. Loads of stoked, happy punters left the beach with bundles of kayaking good vibes swirling in their heads.

Based on numbers that turned out for the weekend, sit on kayaking is certainly on the up and looks set to be this way for a good while yet.

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Special thanks goes out to Henry, Adam and the whole Shore Watersports staff, Andre and Tom from Perception, Tim and John from Palm Equipment, Stuart from Tiki, John and Rich from Nah Skwell and Joey T from O’Neill Wetsuits Europe.

Here’s to next year!