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Return to 1908

Surf Clubs

Renewed interest in surfing and other ocean sports spawned several clubs at the start of the 20th century. In 1908, Alexander Hume Ford founded the Outrigger Canoe and Surfboard Club. The group negotiated a land lease from the Queen Emma Estate to acquire an acre of beachfront property at Waikiki. Members used club dressing rooms and stored their boards in a grass hut on the beach. The first Outrigger Club captain was George "Dad" Center, one of Waikiki's best known watermen. In 1915 Outrigger Club had 1,200 members and hundreds on a waiting list. By 2000 the Outrigger Club had 4,465 members.

While the Outrigger Club served primarily the haole (white) surfer crowd, an alternate group including W.A. (Knute) Cottrell, Duke Kahanamoku, and Kenneth Winter split off and established the Hui Nalu Club in 1911 to promote surfing among Hawaiians. Hui Nalu began as a loose group in 1905; in 1911, they established a locker room in the Moana Hotel and formally elected officers.

By the 1940s, both Hui Nalu and the Outrigger Club had focused their attention on canoe paddling and/or social activities. After World War II, the Waikiki Surf Club came into being and led by John Lind, the group concentrated on promoting surfing.




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