Bill Wise,Hobie Alter,Phil Edwards,Miki Dora,Eddie Aikau,Duke Kahanamoku
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 Hobie Surfboards

Early in 1962 George & Bill first read of John Severson's Surfer Magazine. This was after buying three popout surfboards from a California hustler who had captured Dale Velzy's name in a bankruptcy settlement. The inside cover ad of Hobie's immediately  enlightened the new surfboard entrepreneurs. Bill wrote to Hobie and then made a phone call. When Hobie and Jim Gilloon, Hobie's shop manager, heard the words, "we will pay cash in advance for our orders," The Eastern Surfer was awarded the Delaware& Maryland dealership.  This was the beginning of a long-lasting relationship.  

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     Hobie & Bruce Brown brought the Endless Summer to 18th St. - July 4, 1964 

Early on Hobie intuitively understood the vast business potential of the East Coast. However he had not priced his boards at retail with sufficient margin to give much discount to his dealers. This was universally true of all California surfboard manufacturers.  Volume sales seemed to be the answer. Hobie enthusiastically set about promoting his boards for his dealers on the surfboard hungry East Coast. A collaboration between Dana Point surf filmmaker Bruce Brown and Hobie brought The Endless Summer tour east to stir up the natives. In Ocean City Maryland a surfing demonstration the morning of Fourth of July 1964 brought thousands of spectators to the beach to watch surf legends and stars perform at 18th St. in front of The Eastern Surfer Shop beneath the Sandyhill motel.  At the local high school that evening Bruce narrated in person his film that would go down in the annals of surfing history as the greatest surf movie ever.  Bill has middle-aged men from that long ago, hooting, stoked crowd tell him, "That day and evening changed my life forever. Because of it I became a surfer."    

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Bill & Hobie with balsa board ( left) shaped by Phil Edwards in 1988. Grubby Clark supplied the balsa  
and Hobie "orchestrated" presenting it to Bill. Hobie, Phil, and the glasser, Danny Brawner signed it.
the board arrived by Flying Tigers Air Freight. When Bill answered the door in a wheelchair their driver asked,   "I'm looking for Bill Wise.  I have surfboard for him." He seemed surprised that Bill was the
guy he was looking for. The board hangs from the ceiling at the foot of Bill's bed. It's the last thing
Bill sees before he closes his eyes at night and the first thing that greets him next morning. This treasured balsa board has accompanied Bill through nights that he would have dreaded without it.

Flying high is Bill with the stars and stripes on the "Katie Sue" with Susan & Hobie steadying lines.






Sombrero party in Capistrano Beach - Marge Calhoun, Hobie, Susan, Mickey, Dick Metz, Phil & Mary
with Bill down in front next to PegMuñoz & Rosalie.

The Hobie Bill Knows

The name Hobie Alter is internationally recognizable. His engineering and design brilliance made the
evolution of surfboards take a quantum leap nearly 50 years ago. Hobie's imagination created sailing
radio c
ontrolled sailplanes, boats, skateboards, and a business legacy that will be with us for

In spite of his fame in the surfing and business world which has necessitated high profile to the media,
Hobie is content to be alone in his workshop concentrating on a project. He is always thinking that there
must be a better way to design this or that. A private person, perhaps Hobie is most  creative  when he is
alone. Whether it is a golf club to improve his game, a model sailboat to whip his buddies in informal
competition or a specialized tool that will make his work around the shop easier, Hobie invariably comes up
with a better mousetrap. "You have to have something to get out of bed for in the morning," is his oft
repeated philosophy.  Some of his thinking rubbed off on Bill.

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If it  were not for Hobie, Bill would not have met Jim Gilloon,  John Severson, Phil Edwards, Mickey Munoz,
Dick Metz, Duke Kahanamoku, Greg Noll, Miki Dora, Butch Van Artsdalen, Corky Carroll, Leroy Grannis 
Marge Calhoun, Bruce Brown, Hevs McClelland, Walter & Flippy Hoffman and more surfing folks on the East & 
West coasts, Hawaii and around the world than Bill can count.  How fortunate can one dude be?  To that Bill
answers in a whisper (just so he won't embarrass anyone), "Thanks, all, for being my friend!"

Hobie Web Site -


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