Some Things are Worth Saying Twice

by: Joe Fortney

I honestly can’t remember how many years we have been coming to WRSC, or how many times we have been there… It’s an annual event for us, and during one year we visited twice within the space of a few months. However, frequency is not important, there’s no award for number of trips, or amount of years attended… I see it as the quality of the experiences. So, as I ponder what to write for my Talk Story, how to express our experiences with WRSC, I choose to reflect on our favorite trip there – April 2014 – the year of the ultimate sunset beach party!

NJ invaded WRSC in April of 2014, over 25 of our family and friends took off for Tamarindo, Costa Rica over Spring Break for sun, surf and fun — and to help us celebrate 20 years of marriage with a beach vow renewal ceremony! WRSC had become our favorite spot for our family vacations. We made annual trips, each year bringing more friends to experience pura vida!

Our group of friends was diverse in age and experience, from 5-years old to 55-years old, true beginner-to-true/expert waterman! We promised the trip would fit each of us perfectly, and it did! Each day, a new surf spot, a new adventure! Tamarindo waves right out front, the river mouth, Playa Grande, Marbella, Nosara, Avellanas and secret spots along the coast… so many great spots to access by van, boat or by foot. We all caught our best waves and made great memories.  

We had our vow renewal ceremony on the beach at sunset at El Vaquero. Witch’s Rock did an amazing job with everything. From flowers to cupcakes, to a great romantic, surf-inspired setting, everything was perfect. To my knowledge, this was the first of its kind at WRSC, and it was absolutely perfect! Our sons were part of the ceremony, dressed in board shorts and bare feet, of course. We all exchanged custom bracelets to symbolize our family bond with the inscription “in low tide and high tide, I’ll be by your side.”

We used the same cake topper from our first wedding, updated a bit to reflect the surroundings and theme. We had coozies made with a new design that perfectly described what our life had become.  DJ Matos did an amazing job with music and we danced all night long. Joe Walsh, owner of WRSC, officiated the ceremony and many of the instructors and staff came to help us celebrate.

We were treated to delicious food, great drinks and an awesome bonfire – one that only El Vaquero can deliver. It was a night we will remember forever! It was a perfect way to celebrate 20 years of marriage proving that “some things are worth saying twice.” I DO!

Although this amazing beach party was the highlight of this particular trip and continues to be an enduring memory at the front of our recollections from the many years at WRSC, our group also enjoyed meeting and hanging out with Robert August and snagging an autograph on our Endless Summer memorabilia. His talk story and shaping session is something not to miss.  

Our guests who traveled with us each had some extra space in our suitcases to bring things for the local kids at the Playa Grande Kids Club, Playa Grande School and La Paz Community School. Many in our group decided to “pack for a purpose” and give back to the local community. This was a fantastic feeling to bring so many smiles to the local kids. We were even granted a tour to meet the kids and see the school… simply amazing!

We have visited many times since and will continue our trips – yearly may not be always an option now with college in the picture for our boys, but the memories will live on forever, and continue to provide endless stories among our friends of our travels!

Here’s the YouTube link to a little video slide show of the event!


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