I have noted a trend over the last few years -- on social media in particular -- that beachcombing is less about the beachcomb experience and more about the “stuff” people find. People argue over stuff. Hoard stuff. Are obsessed by it. Spend hours devising new ways to sell it or show it off.

Granted, beach treasures – especially shells, fossils and sea glass - are ‘siren songs,’ luring us back outside and onto a beach again. But beachcombing is a multi-dimensional activity. One that offers us many valuable treasures. Like patience, perspective and peace. Adventure and intrigue. Joy. Hope. Friendships. And better health. Beachcombing can rekindle within us a desire to play outside in the wilds, like children which often reawakens our child-like awe and love for Mother Nature. This, in turn, fires within some of us a determination to take better care of her. It is no surprise that many consummate beachcombers are also committed eco-stewards, who learned well the lessons offered up by the beach.

My walk with cancer a few years ago reaffirmed the critical importance
of having joyful, uplifting moments in my daily life. And certain
activities - like beachcombing – give me those tenfold. Nowadays, I
focus even more on embracing all that life has to offer. I intentionally seek out people of good intentions, resourcefulness and generosity; and who savor new experiences and learning opportunities.  Such concepts provide the foundation upon which the International Beachcombing Conferences rest.

And IBC '20 will be no different. It is open to all who love to learn; love exploring; get a kick out of ‘foraging;’ and share a spirit of goodwill. I can guarantee you will find no other conference like this in the world. For IBC is timed around the tides and the seasons. It is geared toward people who relish wild weather, rough surf and strong winds. Who like to laugh, keep things simple, are happy to share, and often arrive laden with gifts and beach treasures for the raffle, the swap tables and each other, ( a beachcomber-style potlatch).
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Web Design by Deacon Ritterbush - Executed and Maintained by Julia Fairchild - Global Web Connexions - (808) 557-0363
"Dr. Beachcomb" 
 Photos by Riley Herendeen
So come, slough off the weight of the world. Come to one of my favorite spaces on the planet: the shores of Chesapeake Bay and the mid-Atlantic region. Use your time at IBC to relax, laugh, learn, explore, create, collect beach treasures, make new friends and catch up with the old. Come be a kid again in the best sense of the word.

Happy Combing!

Deacon Ritterbush, Ph.D.
(aka Dr. Beachcomb)​
Listen to Hawaii Public Radio Interview with Deacon Ritterbush
CONFERENCE DETAILS
IBC ARCHIVES

Listen to Hawaii Public Radio Interview with Deacon Ritterbush
ANNAPOLIS,  MD