Scott Fitzpatrick made somewhat of a name for himself in the late '90s after discovering kiteboarding, a sport that uses a large kite, almost like a sail, to propel a rider across the water on a small surfboard.

He used Waveny Park as his training ground for nearly 10 years to get the hang of his sport in different conditions. Whether it was on a random sunny day or in 10 inches of snow, Fitzpatrick said everyone in town remembered him as that "crazy kid with the kite." He has been competitive in the sport on the water for the past four years.

No longer a young boy, Fitzpatrick is using his passion for the sport, which is gaining populatirty all over the country, to help people afflicted with cancer.

"It's great to take something I love doing and use it to benefit a great cause," said Fitzpatrick, who graduated from New Canaan High School in 2005. "I'm looking forward to the event."

Fitzpatrick will stay in Hood River, Ore., July 13 through 15 for a six-hour kiteboarding marathon called Kiteboarding 4 Cancer. The marathon is part of the Tenacity Games, a yearlong series of action events that raises funds for Athletes for Cancer's Adventure-based Survivorship Program.

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"The goal of Kiteboarding 4 Cancer is to raise funds for the Athletes for Cancer Survivorship Program that helps cancer fighters and survivors ages 18 to 40 rebuild their lives after cancer," Athletes for Cancer said in a press release. "The mantra of the event is to take on a unique challenge and endure to the point of exhaustion, testing both mental and physical tenacity, embodying the struggle someone going through cancer faces every day."

Fitzpatrick said that while he hasn't lost anyone close to cancer, the stories he heard and the cause inspired him to get involved.

"I'm lucky that no one super close to me has died from cancer, even though skin cancer does run in my family " Fitzpatrick said. "But I do understand the importance of the cause and I wanted to be proactive."

Fitzpatrick's family will be with him at the event. His sister Caroline, a NCHS student, just started kiteboarding, but will not be racing in the marathon.

"She just got started, so she's not going to be on the water for the challenge," he said. "But she and my parents will be coming out to volunteer and do their part for the cause."

"Bringing awareness to the sport is always great. It's getting bigger and we're always doing great stuff out there," he said. "Using the sport to help raise money for cancer research makes that much better."

For details or to donate. visit seescottkite.stayclassy.org.

pjha@bcnnew.com; 203-872-4413; www.twitter.com/pjhancnews