It all started when longtime Pismo Beach surfer Dana McGregor would leave his pet goat, Goatee, at home when he would go surfing and she would cry all the time he was gone, much to the annoyance of his neighbors. So, he took her to the beach with him and taught her to surf and quickly became a tourist favorite.
McGregor jokes that he is “The Goatfather” now and has turned his surfing goat hobby into a mission. He said he loves surfing, working with kids and his goats. His surfing goats are incorporated in his surfing camps, soccer camps, outdoor adventure trips and his Beautifully Abled Surf Camp, which helps special-needs kids.
McGregor has been traveling across California and recently took Cohen Schuller, 9, of Costa Mesa, who is recovering from a brain malformation and has slight cerebral palsy and epilepsy, on his first surfing experience as part of his Beautifully Abled Surf Camp, run by McGregor and the Surfing Goats of Pismo Beach, at the San Clemente Pier. After riding a wave with McGregor and a group of volunteers, it was the goat Pismo the Kid’s turn, and a crowd gathered on the beach and the pier to watch, hooting and taking video and photos. His goat Grover hasn’t taken to surfing as much as Pismo, so he mostly watches from the beach, where he gets lots of attention.
McGregor also has written children’s books, “Surfing Goat Goatee” and “Pismo’s Party Wave.” He says donations he receives go toward the production of the books, special-needs and homeless surf camps, and missions in Mexico. Surfing lessons and activities can be booked online at surfinggoats.com.
“We are just trying to bring hope and healing to people’s hearts through surfing”
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