Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Keeping it Real. Santa Cruz style!

steiny from swaylocks posted this on a thread I started over there. LOOK at all those D fins off to the left!! what must have been out there that day? his description is below:
"otto's board rental/surf shop across from cowell's. after otto passed away jeanie sold all the boards- check how many d-fins! i think that is bob pearson and ward coffey on the far left checking boards."

tsimpson from swaylocks said the following after checking this picture out:
"I hate to admit it, but I think I might have rented a board or two from Otto in 1961-62 or so when I was learning to surf. Some of the worst boards you could imagine. You would get cut up from the unsanded glass threads hanging off the boards which were made by local kids that Otto hired."

steiny also posted the picture below. here are the descriptions:
"from a board swap in santa cruz 2001. clockwise from the top left a yount (santa cruz), pop out, g&s, homemade kid sized pig, unknown, chuck dent, surfboards hawaii, owl and ????"



  1. Hey, I have a 10'10" Otto from the early days of Santa Cruz, its so true what you were saying about the laps! Not even sanded, I had to re-hot coat the rails and sand the rails again, but it was worth it to ride a piece of history. The board is about 80lbs and the D fin has no foil. All the old school guys laughed when I brought this thing into the shop I even had my boss try to throw it away even though I work at an old school glass shop in Santa Cruz!

    This board has a classic wide hipped pig template. I'll make sure to post some pics soon, it's actually up on Craigslist right now but am not sure about selling it...? If you are in santa cruz and would really like to ride a piece of junk/history(beauty is in the eye of the beholder) let me know. Thanks for the great article!


  2. Hi! I sadly wasn't alive at the time of Otto's era but I was just searching around about him because he was married to my great-great-great aunt Jean! I've heard some stories about him from my grandma and great uncles and him taking naps on a bench out front and his monkey. Nice article!

    1. Lily, I remember Otto and his Surf Shop. In fact, I have a couple of old 28" felt pennant banners from the time him and Jean owned the Meyers Texaco Service Station in I believe 1959, before they closed it and turned it into Otto's Surf Spot, in the very early 1960's. They had the monkey, who's name was Sam BTW,

      The Banner says: "On the Beach" Meyers Texaco, Santa Cruz, Calif

      Would you happen to have any other pictures of the station when they had the cage mounted to the top of the old metal service station Texaco sign? Thanks.

  3. They have some of his boards at the light-house museum in Santa Cruz too btw.

  4. Just stumbled on this site while looking for an original Oneil surf decal. I too remember Ottos well. Probably the best rental prices around. Does anyone recall the barrel of 2nd quality apples he frequently had for the customers? I remember we used to get free rentals even if we just organized the boards for him. Fond memories for old guy of 68. I think I was a freshman in high school then...halcyon days. BTW anyone remember Black's Lagoon?

  5. Sorry actually was Black's Cove...just down the dead end street from the Surf Motel.

  6. A lot of nostalgia came over me on seeing the photo above. I bought my first surfboard from Otto in 1962. It was an old 9'6" Velzy with a beautiful wood skeg. I later traded it for a new Scofield. When I attended the sale after Otto passed away, I purchased an Australian Longboard.