Press Releases

Kokatat Outfits SUP Crossing From Cuba to Florida

ARCATA, CALIFORNIA, (July 25, 2013)— In a show of dedication to the world’s most progressive paddle powered expeditions, Kokatat is proud to announce the brand’s sponsorship of Ben Friberg’s upcoming attempt to paddle a stand-up paddleboard (SUP) from Cuba to Florida.

On July 25, 2013, Friberg will depart from Port Hemmingway, Cuba and attempt to paddle the 90-mile channel to Key West, Florida in under 24 hours. Friberg will be paddling a custom SUP shaped by SUP Godfather and veteran Joe Bark. Following Friberg by boat and providing nutrition and route guidance along the expedition will be a team including a navigator, cook, medic, weatherman, and his father.

Friberg, a native of Chattanooga, Tennessee, is no stranger to long distance paddles. In 2012, he set the record for the longest distance travelled by SUP in a 24-hour period when he paddled 238 miles on the Yukon River.

To help achieve his goal, Friberg is heading out with a kit that minimizes weight while maximizing speed. Kokatat supplied Friberg will a full kit for his winter season training, but for the warmer waters of the Straits of Florida he will be using Kokatat’s sun protection apparel and minimal gear while ensuring safety.

Friberg’s expedition will benefit the Jordan Thomas Foundation (, an organization that provides children affected by limb loss with the prostheses they need.

About Kokatat Inc.
Kokatat has been manufacturing paddling gear in Arcata, California for more than 40 years. At a time when many technical apparel brands were moving manufacturing offshore, Kokatat continued to invest in infrastructure in the United States. Kokatat founder Steve O’Meara was committed to the development of the finest and driest paddling apparel in the world and recognized the need to control and continually evolve the development of our dry wear. In the early days, Kokatat worked closely with W.L. Gore & Associates, makers of GORE-TEX®, to refine the sewing and sealing techniques required for full immersion suits and tops. Today, our hands-on approach to manufacturing continues to set the standard in paddling apparel. Into the water with Kokatat! Please visit
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