Mike Purpus

ET Surf celebrates 45 years of stoking So. Bay surfers, skaters

ET Surf celebrates 45 years of  stoking So. Bay surfers, skaters

by Mike PurpusEddie Talbot is celebrating the 45th anniversary of ET Surfboards and Surf Shop, arguably the most successful surf shop in the South Bay since the late 1960s. In the mid-Sixties, Eddie and his best friend, Pat “Gumby” Ryan, were groms on the Greg Noll Surf Team. Even then, Eddie had a pretty good […]

 Mike Purpus

Champion skateboarder, surfer Ty Page invented pop shove-it

Champion skateboarder, surfer Ty Page invented pop shove-it

    by Mike Purpus Former professional skateboarder and surfer Ty Page passed away last Thursday, just two days before the memorial paddleout for Redondo Beach surfboard shaper Don Swift. Page passed away, at age 59, at his home in Park City, Utah. Both he and Swift succumbed to inoperable brain tumors. Page was a […]

 Mike Purpus

Cash in the barrell: Cash Cherry gave up his Rubik’s Cube for a surfboard

Cash in the barrell: Cash Cherry gave up his Rubik’s Cube for a surfboard

  Cash in the barrell   Cash Cherry gave up his Rubik’s Cube for a surfboard. Now he’s applying his problem solving skills to competitive surfing and shaping boards   by Mike Purpus   Cash Cherry may sound like a nickname. It’s not. “We named him Cash because we always pay in cash,” said his […]

 Mike Purpus

Hermosa Surfers Walk of Fame to induct Pipeline finalist Chris Frohoff

Hermosa Surfers Walk of Fame to induct Pipeline finalist Chris Frohoff

Chris Frohoff credits his volleyball playing older brother Brent for starting him surfing, in a sibling rivalry sort of way.
One day, Brent was surfing between volleyball games and lost his board. Chris grabbed it and never gave it back.

 Mike Purpus

Redondo Beach’s Don Swift plans swift return to surfing, with help from friends

Redondo Beach’s Don Swift plans swift return to surfing, with  help from  friends

Everyday, Don Swift sat in his spot, 40 yards southwest of the end of the Topaz jetty waiting for the next set wave. He had been out there for as long as I could remember, at least 30 years. He always got the wave of the day, facing into the bowl and coming off the bottom with a smooth turn into the top part of the curl with style and grace. But Don has been missing in the lineup since October 14 when he was diagnosed with a malignant tumor attached to his brain.

 Mike Purpus

Surfer Walk of Fame inductee Leininger was surfing stalwart

Surfer Walk of Fame inductee Leininger was surfing stalwart

by Mike Purpus John Leininger almost certainly has sold more surfboards than anyone else in the South Bay’s storied surf industry. Shortly after graduating from Bishop Montgomery High School in the mid-’60s, Leininger went to work for Walt Slike and Jim Wells at Skeg Surf Shop at 1st Street and Hermosa Avenue, in Hermosa Beach. […]

 Mike Purpus

Hermosa Beach surfer Pete Briggs ‘rode the nose’ ’til the end

Hermosa Beach surfer Pete Briggs ‘rode the nose’ ’til the end

Pete Briggs had a smooth, Kemp Auberg style with a beautiful drop knee cutback while Ronnie and I went after the Dewey Weber hotdogger look. Last summer, at 68, Pete was still walking the nose at San Onofre.

 Mike Purpus

A Purpus Endless Summer: 60s and 70s surf star Mike Purpus is inspired by Bruce Brown’s “The Endless Summer”

by Mike Purpus In the early 1960s, surf movie posters were hung in the windows of all the hangouts. Hermosa Beach’s Foster’s Freeze, Winchell’s Donuts, (both long gone) and Mickey’s Deli (still kicking) and Stan’s Liquor Store in Manhattan Beach (also long gone) were just a few of the establishments with posters in the window. […]

 Mike Purpus

Poznik loved spearing white sea bass, riding white sharks

Poznik loved spearing white sea bass, riding white sharks

I first met Taras Poznik about 10 years ago when my next door neighbor Bob Carlson

 Mike Purpus

Fog, big surf add drama to ET/South Bay Boardriders contest

Fog, big surf add drama to ET/South Bay Boardriders contest

The December South Bay Boardriders’ contest was canceled because the waves were too small. The January and February contests were canceled because the waves were too big. Then Saturday morning, the fourth contest date in the six contest series looked like it might have to be aborted because, as SBBC president Mike Balzer said, “Hey, we have waves. You just can’t see them, yet.”

 Mike Purpus

Ratopia Surf Contest: South’s Browning rips at Torrance Beach

Ratopia Surf Contest: South’s Browning rips at Torrance Beach

By Mike Purpus and Ed Solt The 11th Annual Ratopia Surf Contest got underway in 1 to 3 foot frozen zippers last Saturday morning at Torrance Beach. It was so cold judging the first heat that the judges thought we were up in Big Bear waiting for the chair lift to open. “The water is […]

 Mike Purpus

Hermosa Hotdoggers Championships Longboard Surf Contest Presented by Subaru Pacific

Hermosa Hotdoggers Championships Longboard Surf Contest Presented by Subaru Pacific

In the ‘60s Hoppy Swartz with the help of Leroy Grannis and the Kerwin brothers put on The Hermosa Beach Surfing Championships for The United States Surfing Association as part of The International Surfing Festival. It was one of the biggest surfing contests of the year. Eddie Solt wanted to bring it all back and did just that last Saturday on the South side of the Hermosa Beach Pier.

 Mike Purpus

Pipeline: West and Beck Adler [PHOTOS]

Pipeline: West and Beck Adler [PHOTOS]

In this year’s South Bay Boardriders Surf Contest  season,  Beck Adler had total control over the Grom Division and was a consistent finalist in the Boy’s Division. Beck’s older brother West was in every Longboard Division Final. I met the Adler brother’s dad, Gary, at the SBBC “King of the South Bay” contest and told […]

 Mike Purpus

Surf community mourns for Bay Cities Surf founder ‘Griff’ Houston

Surf community mourns for Bay  Cities Surf founder ‘Griff’ Houston

Bay Cities Surf Club founding member and former Jacobs Surf Team rider Tommy “Griff” Houston passed away from an apparent heart attack at his Hermosa Beach apartment last Saturday night. He was discovered by his landlord Bob Reinhart, collapsed inside his apartment. He was 67. In the early ‘60s, Houston was a smooth, but radical […]

 Mike Purpus

Pipeline: Nathaniel Harris

Pipeline: Nathaniel Harris

Mike Purpus interviews up and coming grom Nathaniel Harris

  Five years ago my cousins, Rick and Paula Bickford, came up for one of their bi-monthly photo shoots. The Perfect Day Surf Camp was in session right next to our photo shoot. I noticed a skinny, nine year old that looked like the late Buttons Kaluhiokalani learning how to surf trying to catch a […]

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