The Surf Channel caught up with Steve Van Doren early on Day 3 of the Vans US Open of Surfing, as he was doing his daily set up at the Vans food court. Mr. Van Doren has always been seen grilling hot dogs for the event attendees with a smile. The man responsible for the greatest party of the summer took us on a tour of his home this week on Huntington Beach.
“I want everyone to come and have a good time, I love grilling hot dogs and we’re also giving away a lot of free merchandise to everyone. We’re really happy to support surfing and skating and we want to continue doing it for many years to come.” -Steve Van Doren, Vice President Events and Promotions at Vans.
With all due respect to all the big executives from other companies involved, The Surf Channel paid Mr. Van Doren a big compliment for being so humble and approachable. Not many people roll up their sleeves, show up and spend countless hours in the sun cooking for thousands of people. Steve is committed to doing just that. He takes pride in sharing the VANS story.
“I really miss the music this year, I love listening to music, so for now I will play it from my booth and listen to it all I want. We will work on bringing it back next year,” Steve Van Doren shared with us.
We also had a chance to spend a few minutes today with event announcer, Chris Cote, always cheerful and always crackin’ jokes. He’s also got a busy week ahead of him.
“Last two days of the event, I just chill out with my two boys and pretty much stay away from crowds, since I will be fully immersed in the event,” Chris shared with the surf channel as we asked how he prepares himself for this upcoming finals weekend.
Chris recently wrapped up the ASP Los Cabos Open of Surf as Communications Director and locked down his second year working the event. You can also catch him on Cote’s Cube which are short, casual and humorous webisodes.
“I really enjoy learning new things about the up and coming guys and getting to know them,” Chris added. Catch Chris Cote down at the beach or at the podium doing interviews with the athletes, you can’t miss him – specs, dapper shirts and colorful socks!
As far as competition news, it was confirmed that Kelly Slater (USA) has withdrawn from the Vans US Open of Surfing due to a recurring shoulder injury. The 11-timeASP World Champion was scheduled to compete in the Men’s Qualification Series (QS) today. So anyone hoping to catch the 11 time world champion may just have to wait until the Hurley Pro later this year.