Editor’s Note: This feature is presented by our partners at Visit Huntington Beach.
If you’ve spent any amount of time in Huntington Beach, California, there’s a good chance you’ve crossed paths with Rocky McKinnon. He’s a tanned, gregarious, six-foot-plus figure that can be found posted up under his McKinnon Surf & SUP Lessons tent on the north side of the HB pier, shouting “hello’s” and spreading Aloha to anyone within earshot.
After years of competing as one of the top 10 professional longboarders in the country, Rocky made it his mission to give back to the surfing community. He founded McKinnon Surf & SUP Lessons and started offering surf & SUP programs as well as an adaptive surf program for individuals with physical and mental disabilities. The adaptive surf program is a joint effort between Rocky and the city of Huntington Beach to make surfing more accessible and inclusive.
We spent a day with Rocky in Surf City USA, watched him snag a few waves on his self-shaped 9’2″ quad, and spoke with him about his adaptive surf program.
“I think the key to happiness is living your purpose,” Rocky says. “Because doing what you love and sharing it with others will be something that will ultimately enrich your life.”