STILL GOING STRONG: Barney Miller on his way to a heat win in La Jolla last year. The 20th annual Barney Miller Classic is being held next week.
STILL GOING STRONG: Barney Miller on his way to a heat win in La Jolla last year. The 20th annual Barney Miller Classic is being held next week. Chris Grant / JettyGirl.com

Surf's up for 20th year

SURFING: Surfers from across the eastern seaboard will pack their bags and hit the road next week to compete in the annual Barney Miller Classic at Sawtell.

The event is in its 20th year and a large contingent of boardriders are expected to take part in the milestone event across all age categories in both the male and female divisions.

Like previous years, all proceeds from the Barney Miller Classic will be given to a chosen spinal injury recipient.

"I had no idea it would still be going after 20 years back when it started,” Barney Miller said.

"My mate did it for me back in '99 and it's helped someone new every year since. It's an amazing feeling to be able to help people who are going through what I went through.

"It's turned into one of the biggest events on the Coffs Coast or even NSW, it's massive.”

This year the recipient is 24-year-old Jessica Collins, who injured her spine in a surfing accident on the Gold Coast last year.

"Jess is an ironwoman and she was surfing at Snapper Rocks,” Miller said.

"She came off and hit a sand bank and broke her neck on impact.”

Collins suffered a C4 injury as a result of the incident.

"She's a really bubbly person and has a lot of drive,” Miller said.

"It's amazing to be able to get a recipient like that.”

The event has raised more than $130,000 to date for those who have suffered similar injuries.

In addition to the surfing, a movie night will be held on the Thursday night, a black tie gala dinner on the Friday night and a street party featuring live bands on the Saturday night.

Tickets for the gala dinner include a three-course meal and are $75.

They can be purchased at sawtellrsl.com.au.

The Barney Miller Classic is being held from March 29-31.



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