On a recent trip to California, I made sure to stop in to the California Surf Museum in Oceanside. With a knowledgeable, well-connected staff (Jane Schmauss holds the title of “Historian” for crying out loud) and roots firmly planted in the California surf scene, the museum is one of the best portals to the sport’s history available. But this is no dusty warehouse. Residing at the heart of surf Mecca, exhibits bounce from our rich past to our ever-evolving present and all are offered in an approachable, friendly atmosphere that seamlessly connects the dots. Whether you’re Slater or a hack like the rest of us, you’ll find your place amidst the characters presented and, believe me, there are some characters among us.
If you’re not getting out to California anytime soon, you can still become a member and sign-up for their newsletter. It’s rich in perspective and brings a fresh look at the sport that you won’t get from most of the surf mags out there.
Whatever the reason you join, the museum’s a rad little oasis with worker bees that do it for the love and they deserve your attention.
We’re going to stay connected to the museum on this site, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled here for the latest and greatest. Right now, they’ve got an exhibit titled, Bodysurfing: Pure, Simple, and Fun! that’s running through September. Curated by bodysurfing historians Hal Handley and Bill Schildge, and arranged by CSM’s creative director, Tara Lee Torburn, the exhibit features dozens of photographs and heaps of stories by many of the world’s renowned bodysurfers (including the incomparable Mark Cunningham, whom we’ve profiled).
312 Pier View Way || Oceanside, California 92054 || 760-721-6876