by Mike Purpus The parking lot behind Bank of America in downtown Hermosa Beach was buzzing with stoked surfers from all over Southern California on Saturday morning. International Surf Festival contest director John Joseph said, “I have surfers from  Santa Barbara to San Diego, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Brazill, Costa Rica and Japan.”  Their enthusiasm waned…

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by Mike Purpus Mike Eaton went with fellow shaper and Palos Verdes childhood friend Phil Becker to Hawaii’s North Shore in the mid ‘70s to make big wave boards for pro surfers like Palos Verdes native like Jeff Hackman and Peter “PT” Towend and his fellow Bronzed Aussies. I borrowed a few of their big…

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by Mike Purpus In the early ‘70s, I surfed for W.A.V.E. Hollow Surfboards, run by Carl Pope. The surfboards were made from aluminium honeycomb and were impossible to ding. The surfboards were like today’s Firewire Surfboards only stronger. But the aesthetics were not as nice as other boards, so sales slumped. To boost sales, Carl…

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    Mike Doyle was as smooth on land as he was surfing Editor’s note: Hermosa Surfing Walk of Fame inductee Mike Doyle was a champion longboarder and tandem surfer, an author and painter and co-inventor of the soft top surfboard and surf wax. Doyle passed away from ALS on April 28, at his home…

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The Fourth Annual Subaru Pacific Hotdogger Surfing Championships drew 50 of the top-rated longboard surfers from around the world to the south side of the Hermosa Beach Pier on Saturday. The sun was out and so were plenty of fast, glassy, 3-foot tubes to ride.

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Neither the surf nor the surfing at the Hermosa Beach pier on Saturday matched that of the Van US Open, taking place the same day in Huntington Beach. But the stoke was just as high. “I love this contest,” Christian Steutzman said of the International Surf Festival surf contest. He had reason to be happy.…

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At 71, Corky Carroll is still the coolest surfer around. The three-time International Surfing Champion, his lovely wife Raquel, Blue Mango Surfboards founder Joel Saltzman, and old friends John Joseph, Joey Lombardo and I had lunch at the HT Grill in Redondo Beach last month. I hadn’t seen Corky for 19 years, but as soon…

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Every Saturday before Christmas, Nick Weber presents the Ratopia Surf Classic at Torrance Beach. The contest was founded in 2005 to raise funds for 22-year-old local surfer Denny Bales, who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Since the contest’s ounding, it has raised $150,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Every year Santa rewarded the contestants…

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During a recent big storm swell, the south side of the Hermosa Beach pier had the best ridable waves in the South Bay. Photos taken confirmed it. But surfers had such a difficult time paddling out that some were rumored to have jumped off the pier If true, it wouldn’t have been the first time.…

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Ryan Hughes started boogie boarding before he could walk, then skim boarded and at 11 got his first surfboard. The fair-haired, freckle-faced, 5-foot-11-inch Redondo High senior learned to surf from his father Daren on an 8-foot-4 Becker at Torrance Beach. “The board was really old. I think it was made in the ‘80s. But it…

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From rescued to rescuer In 1977, Kip Jerger was awarded the Los Angeles County Lifeguard Medal of Valor for rescuing a fisherman off the rocks at White Point in San Pedro. Jerger was stationed at the Lifeguard tower overlooking the rocky point. “Lifeguard Recurrent” magazine printed Jerger’s account of the rescue: “There was a hurricane…

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