Olathe Man Dreams of Making Some Big Surf
OLATHE, Kan. — There is a Midwest Surfing Association. Really. Google it.
No beach? No problem for Keith Kos, who founded the association and is now dreaming big. And why not? The Florida native has been riding the waves for a long time.
“Without adult supervision or anything like that we just, at 8-years-old, were were like, let’s go for it,” said Kos.
That was on a smaller board. By 10, Kos was up on the big board and surfing all the time. In fact he admits with a sly grin, to skipping school when the waves were big.
“Especially after a hurricane,” he fondly recalls.
As he got older, his surfing and acting dreams pulled him toward California. But along the way, something crazy happened. On a stopover in Kansas City, he met a beautiful young woman named Racquel. He stayed a bit, then left for California, then turned around and came back. He knew Racquel was his partner for life.
“I was on my way to Califronia, uhm, and just, I think God had a different plan for me. No matter what I tried or what I did I was always meant to stay here.”
So he did. Ten years, a wife and two kids later, Keith is still here, working as a network technician for ATT U-verse, and dreaming of, yes, waves. Keith Kos believes if you can’t have waves where you are, you build them.
He’s literally dreamed of a wave park, and actually had a dream of how to build waves big enough to surf. He woke up, and drew out the design. He sent it to a wave maker in California he’d befriended, and got an amazing reply:
“That’s when he called me immediatly and said ‘Keith, it’s unbelievable you sent this to me. This is the exact same project I’m working on right now.”
So that wave builder named Doc gave Keith the rights to use his technology in Kansas, and sent him a mini wave kit to demonstrate to potential investors how waves can be built, even in landlocked Kansas. That includes portable wave technology that could be used on lakes like the Lake of the Ozarks.
He is working on lining up investors, and would like to start by building waves in a small man made pond first. He was shooting for waves this summer, but knows it will take time.
And that girl who stopped his road trip to California about ten years ago? Racquel Kos is now a firm believer:
“You know he’s just meant to be here now, and he’s going to bring it here so I’m able to surve, whereas before I would never have met him I might never have gotten a chance to,” she says with a big smile.
Keith’s grand plan is a massive wave park, with wave pools that allow for actual ocean style surfing on man made waves. And he hopes it’s a place he can share his Christian values with young surfers, with a dream of building character, and more.
“And when they win the ASP World Tour or something, they’re going to ask them, where did you learn how to surf”, he smiles. “And they’re going to say Kansas and that’s just going to blow everyone’s mind!”
Click here for more information about the Midwest Surfing Association.