July 24, 2002
Not being a surfer myself,I was rather unfamiliar with some of the significance of certain surfing firsts until I saw the useful explanations provided for the(egads!) non-surfer,translations of the language,the surfer lingo in which exhibits are captionedthat helped me understand what I was seeing. This is a place for surfing enthusiasts,a rare place where an attempt has been made to document the origins and evolution of the sport from one confined to Hawaiians only to one vastly popular in many corners of the world today.
There's a mass of new and old,but especially old,surfing boards and other equipment here,all compiled in a way that makes sense to surfer and non-surfer alike. Of all the surfing personalities here,in my opinion,Duke Kahanamoku,the two-time Olympic medalist, and the "Father of Surfing," was the most astouding and the tribute to him here is most moving. With limited,donated funds and much cooperation from afficionados who have donated most of the exhibit material,this unique,small museum,aptly located on Highway 101 in downtown Oceanside,is to be appreciated for its uniqueness and its relection of deication to the sport. Currently on exhibit is "Doc Ball & Early California Surfriders," dedicated to the surfing pioneers of the 1940's, with several,previously non-published photos provided by John Ball himself. What is fascinating is the kinds of boards yhat early surfers experimented with, some of which are on display, as well as accounts of how early surfers tried to develop new techniques and surfing strategies. It's open Thursdays through Mondays from 10 a.m. till 4p.m.,and well worth a look-see into another world.
From journal Overlooked Oceanside -North of San Diego