WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - Since 1997, the Wahine Classic has played host to some of the best amateur and professional surfing talent in the country. In 2018, it's no different.
If you're wondering where the term "Wahine" comes from, it's the Hawaiian word for female surfers.
The all-female surfing competition kicked off this weekend at Wrightsville Beach.
It promotes physical and mental wellness for women of all ages.
The event is headed up by Jo Pickett, a competitive surfer and Wilmington resident. This is her 6th year heading up the competition, and one of the many directors, judges and staffers who is working to make this year's event run smoothly.
Contestants were greeted Friday evening with a welcome party at the South End Surf Shop.
Competition began bright and early Saturday with preliminary events in the morning and afternoon.
The classic concludes Sunday with semi-finals, finals, a Teeny Wahine surfer competition and awards ceremony.
"Well, because this is a family atmosphere, families look forward to this. The girls tell me that they enjoy this the most out of anything they do in the summer which is why I do it," Pickett says.
Money raised will benefit the Southern North Carolina District of the Easter Surfing Association.