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Smith Mountain Lake Circumnavigation

July 2012

Located in the Roanoke region of Virginia, beautiful Smith Mountain Lake is one of America’s largest man-made lakes with more than 500 miles of shoreline. This coming July, Tom Jones will circumnavigate the lake on a standup paddleboard to benefit the Safe Surfin’ Foundation which works to protect children from Internet predators, and also to raise funds for next year’s paddle across the Pacific. This month-long event will include concerts, celebrity and sports stars meet-and-greets, and many great family activities both on and off the water. More details to follow…



ORCA Expedition

Ocean Research Crossing Adventure
April - August 2013

For a cause important to every living thing, extreme athlete Tom Jones will standup paddle a surfboard across the open Pacific (CA to HI) accompanied by scientists from the world-leading marine research centers.

The Mission

  • Complete the single greatest ultra-endurance challenge ever attempted. Conquer the Pacific on a surfboard.
  • Collect, discover and analyze the global threats of new microbes that are adapting, evolving and breeding in the “Plastisphere” – the huge, unnatural environment that has been created by plastic waste in the world’s oceans and tidal zones.

By consuming plastic concentrated in the millions of square miles of ocean gyres and tidal zones, newly discovered microbes and the organisms that prey upon them are increasing and accelerating the bioaccumulation of toxins, carcinogens and endocrine-disrupting compounds into the global food chain all the way up to man. Estrogen-like compounds from plastic may be reducing reproduction rates at the bottom of the marine food chain – the world’s single largest food source. And, like the plot for a sci-fi thriller, some of these microbes may be aggressive pathogens that could attack fish, other marine creatures and even man.

Next year, join Tom Jones and the ORCA Research Team online…
…Experience the thrills, chills, spills and adventures as Tom Jones braves the open ocean and all its creatures with nothing more than a paddle and a slender fiberglass board
… See and hear first-hand accounts of daily scientific discoveries from the largest sampling and collection of open-ocean biota and marine plastic waste ever performed
…Participate via satellite broadcasts and social media networks in the unpredictable interactions of a diverse group of athletes, scientists and seafarers enduring more than four continuous months at sea



Tom Jones Paddle 2010

May 12th to Aug 28th
A New World Record for a Plastic Free Ocean

Arduous journey on a tight schedule

Similar to his record-breaking, ultra-endurance run across America (120 consecutive daily marathon-distance runs regardless of terrain or climate), Tom must maintain a grueling schedule every day to cover the distance along the Eastern coastline.

To accomplish this feat, the land mass between Key West and New York City is broken down into daily “legs” of paddling. Because of the continual unpredictability of weather and especially high winds, Tom has the option to paddle each daily leg either North or South depending on what he has to face on the water that day. Every day, starting and ending GPS points are precisely logged so that the distance paddled creates a continuous line that will cover the entire coast from the starting point at the Southernmost Buoy in Key West, Florida, to the world-record finish in Battery Park, New York.

Far bigger than the paddling distance record is Tom’s commitment to raise awareness and funding for the mission of Plastic Free Ocean. Perhaps more than any other cause to which you could contribute, your donation here will help protect both wildlife and human health.

Your comments and suggestions are also welcome. Email us at info@plasticfreeocean.org.