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Men, Women, Dogs Set To SUP This Australia Day

By Madeleine Gray on January 8, 2016 in News

Photo: Terry McDermott

Photo: Terry McDermott

Depending on your previous experiences, the words ‘Australia Day’ can rouse up polar emotions. You might recall the time you got maggot at your cousin’s barbecue and ended up chundering whilst hanging off the Hills Hoist. Or you might think of mateship, the outdoors, and celebrating all that makes you proud to be Australian – things like community, multiculturalism and damn good meat pies. On Tuesday, January 26, we strongly encourage that you embrace the latter by heading down to Watsons Bay for WATSSUP Watsons Bay Stand Up Paddling’s third annual ‘Every Man and His Dog’ stand up paddling event.

The day is a sun-soaked celebration of all things Aussie, as participants ranging from kidlets to dads to professional athletes compete in a range of stand up paddling events.

Most iconic are the ‘Man and Dog’ events, where you (whether you be man or woman!) must navigate the sparkling waters of Sydney Harbour whilst keeping your favourite canine companion upright on your board.

There are a range of courses to suit a wide cross-section of physical prowess and ability, and the stunning location means that even those who are not athletically inclined can still enjoy a picturesque day overlooking the harbour.
WATSSUP is an ASI accredited Stand Up Paddle school based in Watsons Bay, owned by Mermaid Joanna Kyriazakos and Bondi Rescue lifeguard Terry McDermott.

Kyriazakos pretty much summed it up when she explained that what she loves about this event on Australia Day is “that it encompasses so much of what makes up a modern day Aussie.” It is about community, physical activity, and our love of dogs, all set in a classic Aussie setting.

McDermott echoed this sentiment, explaining that his love for the day is intertwined with its celebration of the relationship between man and man’s best friend.

“Add the man and dog into a mixture of social and serious SUP races and you have an event for all to enjoy on our national holiday,” he said.

Race registration can be done online at the event website,, until 8pm on Sunday, January 24.