The 10’x10’ glass mosaic depicting the lady of Guadalupe on a surfboard riding a monster Teahupoo wave with the message “Save the Ocean” down the side has evolved into a nonprofit, Surfing Madonna Oceans Project, that has brought a tidal wave of positivity to the North County communities.
In the last two years, over $140,000 has been donated back for ocean conservation projects, special needs ocean swim and surf programs, scholarships, and marine mammal rescue equipment. This small, local nonprofit is making a huge difference.
The organization raises the funds through their annual Surfing Madonna 5K/10K/15K Beach Run and by selling commemorative bricks and concrete pavers that are permanently placed at the foot of the mosaic. People from all over Southern California have had their messages inscribed on the bricks, one even reads “Will you marry me, Rosa?” Some of the bricks honor loved ones, while others have humorous or inspirational messages, such as “A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.”
Surfing Madonna Oceans Project asks for a $150 donation for the engraved brick and $500 for the 16”x16” concrete paver. All of the proceeds will benefit the 2016 Surf Camp for Special Needs Children and the Ocean Swim and Surf Program for special needs adults. Both programs are held at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas and are free for families to participate.
The Engraved Brick & Paver Project will be ongoing until all 1,000 bricks are sold. For information and to purchase a brick, you can visit www.surfingmadonna.org