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By Jake Howard

Last week, Dana Point’s Kai Thompson rolled into the NSSA Nationals in Huntington Beach and finished in second place in the Explorer Boys Super Groms Division. The 11-year-old was on a tear—and he isn’t hard to miss given his penchant for colorful wetsuits and surfboards.

Already a master of modern media, Thompson has more than 18,000 followers on Instagram and knows full well how to harness the power of social media. Whether he’s stand-up surfing, hammering the shore break on his skimboard or pulling into closeouts at Salt Creek—all while wearing his multicolored florescent wetsuits—Thompson has dialed in his act and enjoys the support of a number of reputable brands.

Kai Thompson. Photo: Courtesy of @kaithompson_1morewave

Taking a page out of the book of area skimboard freak Blair Conklin, whose Instagram reach extends well past a quarter-million followers, Thompson’s videos are highly entertaining. And because he’s so stoked, so is his audience.

Whether he’s doing work in a jersey and posting big contest results or having the time of his life cutting his next video, Thompson knows what having a good time in the ocean is all about.

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