Hundreds of witches and warlocks glided through the waters of Morro Bay Harbor on canoes, kayaks and paddleboards Sunday during the 10th annual Witches and Warlocks Paddle.
The celebration is a fusion of Central Coast surf culture and the Halloween holiday, according to spectator Linda Lind.
Lind drove down from North County to support her two daughters Hilary and Romona, who were participating in their first Witches Paddle.
“It’s a trek to get out here, but, whoo, was it wonderful!” Lind said. “It was definitely worth it.”
Gayle and Tom Montes of Ventura County, came out in support of their son, Eddy, who broke tradition and chose to dress up as a skeleton as opposed to a sorcerer.
Their son, whose birthday falls on Halloween, has turned the Witches Paddle into a celebration of his own, his parents said.
The Witches and Warlocks Paddle has grown since a group of friends launched the event 10 years ago. Now, scores of people come from across San Luis Obispo County and the country to participate in the paddle or cheer on friends and family members.
Debbi Ramirez and Paula Hunter drove all the way from Arizona to watch the event, although they plan to paddle out next year. They were bubbling with excitement as they watched the event dressed in witches’ robes.
“It’s been a fun trip,” Ramirez said. “We’ve just been excited to see all the costumes and the energy here is great.”
During the event, new groups of participants continually launched into the waters of the bay.
Natalie Penney celebrated her first paddle on Sunday after a few friends inspired her to finally join them in the yearly tradition.
“I’ve seen all the pictures but never been out here in person,” Penney said. “It’s a totally different experience … I’m so glad (I did it.)”