Ridin’ Waves in Corona Del Mar, 1950s

CORONA DEL MAR—Surfing started to become a popular sport in Southern California during the early half of the 20th century. By the 1950s surfing was a fairly common activity, as seen by this group of surfers riding the waves near Corona Del Mar.

Duke Kahanamoku, who is immortalized in statue form on Huntington Beach’s Main Street, is largely considered the first surfer who brought the sport to the West Coast. “The Big Kahuna,” as he was called by some, was born in Honolulu Hawai’i in 1890 and was a descendant of royalty – at one time surfing was said to be a sport that only royal family members could participate.

Today it’s nearly impossible to visit a California beach without passing a surfer or two (or more). Visit dukeswaikiki.com for more information about Duke Kahanamoku.


Photo courtesy of Orange County Archives

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