In September of 2016, local surfer, fitness trainer and owner/operator of Jax rehab and performance training studio Endless Training, Devan Kennedy died surfing in Nicaragua. The local surf community was heartbroken, as Kennedy left in his wake countless friends, a laundry list of clients indebted to his training regiments and rehabilitative services, as well as his mother Dinah and girlfriend Corey who’d found out the day after Devan died that she was pregnant with the couple’s daughter, Airlie.
On Saturday, August 11, the folks at the Dragon Factory will celebrate the life and spirit of Kennedy by releasing a gorgeous new single fin model, The Dev. Prior to leaving for Nicaragua in 2016, Kennedy had shaped a similar board. And though he never had a chance to test drive it, friends and family alike have given it a go (or ten), discovering that the board possessed all the qualities worthy of that ever-elusive “Magic board” moniker.
The Dragon Factory’s Tyler Kirshenbaum, who helped spearhead the release of The Dev Model and has committed to donating half of all profits from sales of the board to support Kennedy’s daughter Airlie, also has a special connection to Kennedy. After Kirshenbaum’s son, the ever-talented Kaleb was injured surfing the pier in 2015, Kennedy, through countless hours of training, was instrumental in KK’s returning to form.
The release party kicks off at 6PM at the factory, with boards, bands, art and brews. The DEV model will be on display and available for pre-order at a special discounted rate (for one night only). Jake McCain + Wes Cobb and The Firewater Tent Revival will perform while artist Caitlin Baiata paints live in the factory. Jacksonville Surf and Paddle is sponsoring Corn hole competition. There’ll also be beer and wine tasting sponsored by Salt Life Lager and Royal Palm Village Wine & Tapas and Mr. Potato food truck will be serving up delicious eats.
For more info on the party check the Facebook event page here. And check out KK’s comeback story below.