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Inaugural members of San Diego Surfing Hall of Fame to be inducted

Posted: 3:10 PM, Aug 13, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-13 18:10:50-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — In what's being hailed by organizers as the greatest gathering of surf legends San Diego has ever seen, the first members of San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame will be inducted Tuesday night.

The ceremony set for Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach will celebrate 14 individuals who have made pioneering contributions to San Diego's surfing culture.

"These innovators and pioneers have emerged everywhere that waves break. In this regard, San Diego has been particularly blessed," organizers write. "Our 70 miles of coastline have produced some of the most innovative shapers and wave stylists in the sport. And as everyone paddling out to the lineup knows, you have to honor those who have come before us."

Surfboard craftsman Hank Warner, a legend in his own right, will play the Master of Ceremonies as the hall of fame kicks off with the inductions of:

  • Phil Edwards (Oceanside native credited with being the first to surf the Banzai Pipeline in Hawaii and the first pro surfer.)
  • Skip Frye (San Diegan known for his pro surf career and iconic boards.)
  • Mike Hynson (San Diegan who costarred in the 1966 hit "The Endless Summer" and surfboard design guru.)
  • Linda Benson (From Encinitas, a legendary pro surfer called the "Godmother of female surfing," she was the first woman to ride Waimea Bay and is an International Surfing Hall of Famer.)
  • Tom Keck (From Coronado, an accomplished surf photographer for has documented the sport since the late 1950s and an International Surfing Hall of Fame member.)
  • Butch Van Artsdalen (From La Jolla, a pioneering surfer who took on 25-foot waves in Hawaii to garner the title "Mr. Pipeline.")
  • Bill Caster (A San Diego surfboard shaping icon known for Caster surfboards.)
  • Tom Ortner (La Jolla resident and an icon in the Windansea beach community.)
  • Ron Church (San Diegan who was a pioneering surf photographer of the California and Hawaii surf scene through the 1960s.)
  • Carl Ekstrom (Developed the first asymmetrical boards in the late 1960s.)
  • Larry Gordon (San Diegan who was a fixture in the boardmaking community since the 1960s.)
  • LJ Richards (Oceanside native and pro surf legend who won the 1963 West Coast Surfing Championship, surf film actor, and International Surfing Hall of Fame member.)
  • John Holly (Veteran Ocean Beach surfer and board shaper.)
  • Chuck Hasley (Founder of the Windansea Surf Club of La Jolla.)
  • Windansea Surf Club (Legendary surf club known for boasting some of the best-known surfing names.)

Attendees will also enjoy live music from Jimmy Lewis, live art from Wade Koniakowsky, and a special collaboration between Warner and surf filmmaker Ira Opper. A "top-secret" list of special guest presenters is also due.

Doors open at 6 p.m. and the ceremony starts at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $32, with reserved loft seating for $53.