Circa Mid 1990s
Originally from southern Maine, my family relocated to San Diego in the early 1960’s. It was there I surfed for the first time. In the summer of 1968, at the age of 11, my neighbor Pattie Miner invited me to tag along to the beach with her. I had the time of my life, and 46 years later still do.
While in High school, several of the older guys in the neighborhood were shaping and building boards on their own. Intrigued by the lamination process of board building, one day in 1973 I decided to try doing one for myself. I ordered a shaped blank from local shaper Bill Minard, and got a friend to hold my hand through the laminating process. That very first attempt went reasonably well. However, my dad was not at all impressed by what had taken place in his garage. After the 2nd or 3rd board I was hooked, but my dad kicked my butt right out of his garage. In need of a space, I rented a small garage in Mission Beach, and set up a mini back yard glassing business. I spent the next few years laminating (and sometimes butchering) boards for friends and neighbors, until eventually moving north for school.
I returned to San Diego a few years later, and was given the opportunity to work at the Channin Surfboard factory (currently the Bing factory), thanks to Bill Minard, who was shaping there at the time. While not actually working on surfboards that first year, I was doing wet work and working side by side with Tony Channin on his then pet project, Hull line Boats. I eventually got hired on in the surfboard side of the building, and had the opportunity to really learn how to build surfboards from the ground up. I had the privilege of being taught by some of the best craftsmen of the day. Randy Wong took me under his wing and taught me much of what I know today. Some of the amazing and talented individuals who worked in that building at the time included Donald Takayama, Mike Diffenderfer, Rick Hammond, Bill Minard Wayne Hoshizaki, Lou Forder, Brian Johnson, and Tom Cervantes. In the mid-eighties another opportunity would present itself at the Gordon and Smith factory in San Diego. The fin and hot coat guy had broken his arm, and again I had the opportunity to learn and work around another group of very talented and gifted surfboard builders. Some of the board builders working at the G & S factory at that time included Skip Frye, Larry Mabile, Sam Cody, Hoy Runnels Paul Bodary, Mike Matso, TSG, Tom Curtis, and Mike Anderson.
After decades of manufacturing, Gordon and Smith had decided to relocate. They shut down the laminating side of their company, and began contracting out the messy part of their business to Fiber Tec Laminating (the glassing division of Nectar Surfboards). It was there that I found myself once again working on G& S’s, as well as other board labels, until the loss of the buildings lease in 1987.
For the first time since that rented garage in Mission Beach, I ventured out on my own again opening Pacific Surf Glass, in July of 1987. At PSG we were laminating and building surfboards for a number of different labels over the course of the next nearly 20 years such as Rusty, G&S, Skip Frye, Bill Minard, DHD, C I, Kane Garden, South Coast, Aloha, Maurice Cole, Third World Exotic, Dennis Murphy, Mike Hynson, and Pat Rawson to name a few. In early 2000’s, seeking a major change in our life, my wife and I relocated to Nova Scotia. I put PSG, and KG for sale, and would sell most of the business in 2002, becoming a minority and absentee owner. In 2006, I left the business altogether, due to the extremely long commute an unsatisfactory business relationship with the new owners. Fast-forward to today and a new chapter in life begins at Just Stand.
In the late ‘70’s, after hearing from a reliable source that there were fun point break waves in Nova Scotia, a good friend and surfing mate invited me on a adventure northeast to check out the place for our selves. Finding fun surf and meeting the then small surf community was a wonderful experience that stuck in my head for years to come. Over the next 20 years or so I would return for many visits, getting to know and making new friends in the slowly expanding surf community. Good surfing gear in the Lawrencetown area wasn’t always available during the eighties and nineties, so I helped out many of my new friends by lining up shapers in factories that I was working with at the time. At some point I began feeling more comfortable here in Nova Scotia then back home in California so I convinced my wife to pack up our bags, and we relocated to the Canadian northeast. Over this past decade I have continued helping old and new friends out by connecting them with a variety of different shapers and board builders, in an effort to help fulfill their surfing needs here in Nova Scotia. I have a long-standing history here in Nova Scotia and in the surfing industry, and feel comfortable with my new role as a surf shop owner. I enjoy helping both surfers and paddlers alike choose the right equipment for our local conditions, and hope to do so for many years to come.
(Left to right) Brian Vileneuve and Justin Huston. Both outstanding guys in and out of the water spreading the Aloha Spirit.
Maritime Surf Company Formally JUST STAND
6344 Hwy 207
Seaforth NS B0J 1N0
Inside the Seaforth general store upstairs
Store hours; winter hours beginning October 1st
Friday 11 to 5
Sunday 11 to 5
By appointment 7 days per week