SANTA ANA, Calif. – For the next three months, a new exhibit is being featured in John Wayne Airport’s (JWA) Vi Smith Concourse Gallery. Entitled “California’s Orange Coast: 42 Miles of Tradition and Lore,” and sponsored by the Surfing Heritage Foundation, the exhibit will feature a visual history of the role surfing has played in Orange County spanning nearly 100 years. On display through October 27, 2008, the exhibit is open only to the traveling public and can be seen across from gates 1 through 4 and 11 through 14 in the Thomas F. Riley Terminal.
“We are excited to feature this exhibit as part of the Airport Arts Program,” said Airport Director Alan Murphy. “Surfing and Orange County go hand in hand, and we are pleased to be able to share this unique exhibit with our passengers.”
“Surf culture has become a hallmark of the Southern California lifestyle,” said Casey Caston, Director of Development for the Surfing Heritage Foundation. “The airport provides a high exposure venue to share some of the incredible content that we have archived.”
Illustrating the development and role of surfing in each beach town along the Orange County coast, the exhibit features aerial maps and photographs highlighting historical sketches, surfing landmarks, significant personalities and objects of interest.
“Although surfing is thought to have originated with the ancient Polynesians, it was through its introduction to Southern California by Hawaiians such as Duke Kahanamoku in the early 1900s when surfing experienced its first boom,” said Barry Haun, Curator and Creative Director for the Surfing Heritage Foundation. “Today the surf industry based in Orange County has become a $6 billion-plus market, with its influence reaching a worldwide audience. We’ve captured its roots and progress with this exhibit.”
Founded in 2001, the Surfing Heritage Foundation is a non-profit organization located in a world-class cultural heritage facility in San Clemente, CA. Their focus is the collection and preservation of historical surf craft, photography, books, periodicals and papers, and many other items of cultural importance, much of which originated in Orange County. For more information about JWA’s Art Program, visit www.ocair.com and for more information about Surfing Heritage Foundation, visit www.surfingheritage.com.