Rarick, Bertlemann, Van Hamersveld, O’Donnell, Haley & Moorhouse in
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 31 July, 2014 - In the shadow of the US Open of Surfing, Surf City USA’s Main Street was blocked off to honor the newest class of inductees to the Surfing Walk of Fame on Thursday morning.
Through a selection ballot, a host of respected surf industry veterans, former professionals and surf journalists narrowed down a field of hundreds of candidates to name the six 2014 Surfing Walk of Fame’s honorees in their respective categories – Larry Bertlemann (Surf Champion), Randy Rarick (Surf Pioneer), John Van Hamersveld (Surf Culture), Phyliss O’Donnell (Women of the Year), Mike Haley (Local Hero) and Vince Moorhouse (Honor Roll).
“It’s amazing to think that we started this 21 years ago and now have over 150 stones in the cement on Main Street,” emcee, former World Champion and past inductee Peter Townend said. “I never undervalue the honor of getting up here and recognizing legends of our sport. This is their moment in the sun. That’s what’s so special about the Surfing Walk of Fame -- it brings us all together.”
Long time Triple Crown of Surfing Executive Director Randy Rarick garnered the Surf Pioneer induction this year. Rarick’s achievements span the spectrum from his days as a former professional surfer to Hawaii contest organizer, as well as a master surfboard craftsman and global surf adventurer.
Peter Townend & Larry Bertlemann © Mike Cianciulli
“I came to Huntington Beach 50 years ago as a young haole kid from Hawaii and thought, ‘Wow, this is what surfing is all about’,” Rarick said. “We decided pro surfing had a place in this world and we started the pro tour which eventually became the ASP. Now pro surfing is what’s happening out there, thanks to the ASP.”
‘70s surfing icon Larry Bertlemann earned the Surf Champion plaque. A former US Champion, Bertlemann is widely known as one of the main riders to push progressive surfing forward during the evolution from long- to shortboards -- spinning 360s and wildly spontaneous cutbacks and carves ahead of his peers.
“Surfing was this neat little thing we did,” Bertlemann said. “Our core group just wanted to have fun but back then people said we didn’t have a prayer.”
Bertlemann then proceeded to recite a surfer’s version of the Our Father prayer, much to the delight of the shoulder-to-shoulder crowd on Main Street.
The Surf Culture went to John Van Hamersveld, widely known as the artist behind the iconic Endless Summer movie poster. But Van Hamersveld’s work has made a mark on modern pop culture with the design of countless psychedelic album covers for bandslike The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Grateful Dead and more.
Phyllis O'Donnell with Fernando Aguerre © Mike Cianciulli
International Surfing Association President Fernando Aguerre presented the Woman of the Year honor to the first-ever Women’s World Surfing Champion, Phyliss O’Donnell. She received a standing ovation from the Huntington crowd.
“I first came to Huntington Beach 45 years ago,” O’Donnell remembered. “When I found out I was getting inducted, I couldn’t believe it. I want to thank everyone who helped get me here.”
Also honored in this year’s ceremony, former US Champ and Huntington mainstay Mike Haley was recognized as the Local Hero. And formerHuntington Beach Chief Lifeguard Vince Moorhouse earned the Honor Roll spot.
The Surfing Walk of Fame is the only tribunal in surfing to award specific categories as well as require a 10-year margin since the commemorating achievement. This year’s recipients will be cemented alongside past inductees, earning their immortal place in the pavement on the corner of PCH and Main Street, directly across from the famous pier in Surf City USA -- HuntingtonBeach, California.
Past recipients of the Surfing Walk of Fame honors include Duke Kahanamoku, Kelly Slater, Lisa Anderson, Tom Curren, Bruce Brown, Eddie Aikau and more.