Cowell Beach, Santa Cruz
November 23, 2019
By today's standards 1936 Santa Cruz was a different place and surfing was more of a novelty than a sport like it is today. But a handful of young men who valued surfing formed the Santa Cruz Surfing Club and rented an abandoned hamburger stand near Cowell Beach to be used as their clubhouse.
More than eight decades later the clubhouse is gone but the waves continue to roll into Cowell Beach and another group of young men, realizing the importance of their surfing forefathers, organized the Santa Cruz Surfing Club Preservation Society to honor their predecessors' history. With the help of donors they contacted sculptor Sean Monaghan and local concrete artist Tom Ralston to collaborate on a bronze plaque monument.
Master of Ceremonies Kim Stoner and Bob Pearson joined by Polynesian dancer Lorraine Kinnamon and two of the original club members, Harry Mayo and Bob Rittenhouse Sr., welcomed more than 100 supporters to the unveiling ceremony. Nine current and former Santa Cruz City officials, Martine Watkins, David Terrazas, Cynthia Matthews, Hilary Bryant, Lynn Robinson, Don Lane, Ryan Coonerty, Justin Cummings, and Donna Meyers, jointly read a proclamation celebrating the event.
Following the dedication the Dream Inn provided an open house/buffet for all who attended.
Contributors: Santa Cruz Preservation Society, Joe Collins, Al & Christine Ramadan, David & Carol O'Brien, Randall Gray, Burleigh & Helen Cooper, and Dream Inn.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2020 edition of Santa Cruz Style magazine.
Photographs by Mickey Carroll.