The Eddie Aikau Surf Contest is a Go for Wednesday

Thousands tuned in 2016—the last time the competition was held. Here’s how you can watch it this year.
Eddie Aikau Invitational 2023
Photo: Getty Images

Today, the Eddie Aikau Foundation announced on Facebook, “The Eddie is a Go,” for Wed. Jan. 11, 2023, at Waimea Bay on Oʻahu’s North Shore. 

The Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational is an entertaining spectacle, drawing massive crowds to watch as the world’s top athletes not only compete, but soar down monstrous waves. And it’s a rare occurrence.  

Named after the late, big-wave legend and lifeguard, Eddie Aikau, the competition has only been held nine times since its inception in 1984. The contest only takes place if waves consistently reach heights of 20 feet, between Dec. 14 to March 23. The Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational was canceled in February 2022 due to inadequate conditions.  

Forecasters at the National Weather Service predict a giant northwest swell will arrive Tuesday night. The winter months already bring ginormous waves to Oʻahu’s North Shore, but forecasters predict the swell to build and peak Wednesday, producing waves reaching as high as 40-50 feet. 

The last Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational took place on Feb. 25, 2016. More than 1.2 million viewers from more than 200 countries tuned in to the event’s live stream. Hawaiʻi’s own John John Florence won the contest, which at the time was called the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau. 

This year, more than 30 surfers have been invited to compete, including Kelly Slater, Billy Kemper, John John Florence, Kai Lenny, Makua Rothman and Paige Alms.  

The competition can be watched live on the foundation’s website,  

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