Craft beer-themed wave pool gets greenlight

Last week elected officials in Yakima County Washington heard residents speak out on the proposed Barreled Surf Park. Some pro, some con. In the end, local officials will allow Joey Lawrence and Mike Roy to develop land near East Norman and St. Hilaire roads in Moxie.

The result will be Barreled, a $30 million surf park with lodging units, a campground, and a restaurant featuring Yakima Valley craft food and beverages.

Residents had complained that additional traffic and water use would ruin their quality of life. Despite those concerns, on Friday the plans were approved – as long as conditions are met. The developers will have to ensure that the roads are sufficient and that light and noise pollution is limited. They must also apply for a well permit and dig the facility upon approval.

Barreled Surf Park will be located two hours from Seattle and three hours from Portland. The rural farming community is known as the Hop Capital of the U.S.A., with three-quarters of America’s crop produced there. Hops of course, those small bulbs that resemble tiny green pinecones, produce beer.

“The name of our park, Barreled, is as much an ode to the local craft beverage industry as it is to the surfing maneuver we all dream to achieve,” said project partner Joey Lawrence. “The main reason for our site selection is evidenced by Yakima’s less popular nickname among locals, “The Palm Springs of Washington”. 

The valley claims 300 days of sunshine per year and a high desert climate that hits the 80s and 90s (25-30 Celsius) in the off-winter months. Lows in February hover around freezing.

Lawrence said their goal was to create an environment where people from all over the Pacific Northwest will be able to surf in boardshorts during summer and light wetsuits in the transition seasons of late spring and early fall.

Once completed (estimated Spring 2024) Barreled would be open April through October.