Author Archives: Low Key Surfboards

Surfer Filipe Toledo’s Double Alley Oop Perfect 10 at Corona Open J-Bay 2017

Surfer Filipe Toledo’s Double Alley Oop Perfect 10 at Corona Open J-Bay 2017

Surfer Filipe Toledo’s Double Alley Oop Perfect 10 at Corona Open J-Bay 2017.

Holy Toledo!!!  If you haven’t been following the 2017 World Surf League’s Corona Open J-Bay competition, you missed an historic ride by Brazilian surfer Filipe Toledo. Fans, fellow competitors and announcers were dumbfounded by this historic moment. Aerial surfing reached new heights with Toledo’s not one, but TWO huge back to back alley-oops!

What’s a surfing alley-oop?  It’s a counterclockwise air 360 above the wave, a very bold trick for surfers.  It was inspired by moves performed by skateboarders in half-pipes.  Pulling off a high alley-oop requires a lot of speed and a perfect off-the-lip take off. It’s a transitional maneuver and a surfer needs a clean landing to resume surfing.  And that is exactly what Filipe Toledo did at J-Bay! TWICE!!!


Click on this WSL article to watch the full amazing, flawless, unbelievable video performance.

“The tides of history are shockingly predictable from a distance. Innovation is often the spark for revolutions, and in the wake of the turmoil they create, long after new powers take hold, the pace of progress slows as they look to tighten their grip. But change can never be stopped. Eventually something new always comes along to disrupt the existing order, and Filipe Toledo‘s jaw-dropping 10-point ride at the Corona Open J-Bay was that moment. Toledo simply shattered the judges’ scale with his remarkable ride. Under current rules, there was no way to award him what he truly deserved for his back-to-back alley-oops. Nothing like that has ever been seen in competition, and nearly a week later the impact is still radiating.”









Filipe Toledo’s going to need a few more fingers if he keeps things up. WSL / Steve Sherman


If you’re looking for a new board, give us a call at Low Key Surfboards, we can set you up! Artistically designed EPS/Epoxy boards are hand shaped at Low Key Surfboards from start to finish.

All Low Key Surfboards, Stand Up Paddle Boards & Paddles are made in the USA! Yep, right here in the Melbourne, FL area in Brevard County.

Godfather of East Coast Surfing Dick Catri Passed Away

Godfather of East Coast Surfing Dick Catri Passed Away

Dick Catri was 79 years old.  Sadly, he died on Monday due to complications of recent strokes. He impacted the surf world in a major way and will be sorely missed by so many.

Here’s a cool video from the old days posted on YouTube by Balsa Bill.

The following Florida Today article is a nice tribute to the man.

Surfer Dick Catri (Florida Today)


Affectionately known as the true “Old Man and the Sea,” world-class surfer, fisherman and charter boat captain Dick Catri once joked that he didn’t actually invent surfing. But he was close.

A pioneer in the sport, an original inductee into the East Coast Surfing Hall of Fame and a 1966 inductee into the International Hall of Fame, the Melbourne Beach resident passed away Monday morning from complications of several recent strokes.
“He had been fighting a lot of things,” said Cocoa Beach’s Sean Slater. “I think it was a matter of when. It’s a shame. A lot of things to be thankful for.”

Catri had previously battled skin cancer, had lupus and had an angioplasty.

Born in 1938 in Carteret, New Jersey, Catri not only was the first East Coast surfer to prove he could surf the giant waves in Hawaii (he placed second in the 1967 Duke Kahanamoku Classic at Sunset Beach), but he also put together one of the finest surf teams in the country and brought international stars to his pro events at Sebastian Inlet. For more than three decades, he and partner John Griffin also operated the Easter Surf Fest in Cocoa Beach.

“He was just someone to look up to, he took his time with the kids and he taught me to be competitive,” said Cocoa Beach’s Sean O’Hare, who has helped curate what is now the Florida Surf Museum.

Growing up in Miami, Catri was an all-city defensive end for Miami Jackson High’s football team and was a state high jump contender before sustaining a broken ankle.

To earn money, he went to work at a pool on Miami Beach, fetching towels for the rich and famous at a hotel where promoter and world champion high diver Bert Williams staged water shows for tourists. One of the show’s stars was Jack “Murph the Surf” Murphy, a surfer from Carlsbad, Calif., who later gained international notoriety by stealing the Star of India sapphire from the Museum of Natural History in New York.

They soon became friends and together they became the main event for the Petersen Aquacade Water Show. Catri practiced four hours a day, learning to dive from as high as 100 feet. Murphy was the stunt-diving comedian, while Catri was his straight man. Their acts often consisted of fire and alligators.

In the winter of ’57, Murphy opened Catri’s eyes to surfing.

“He was the first person I ever saw stand up and ride a wave,” Catri once told FLORIDA TODAY. “I went bonkers.”

As luck would have it, two FBI agents from California were investigating the motel where Catri worked. It was owned by mob boss Meyer Lansky. Catri and Murphy talked the agents into sending them two boards when they got home, and the rest is history.

The next year, they decided to take a trip to Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, where the surf was usually pumping. But they never made it. They hopped over to Palm Beach, then Vero Beach. All they saw was flat waves.

Then, a stop in Indialantic. Wow! Six-foot waves with offshore winds. Paradise.

“We surfed for hours,” Catri said.

They attracted a crowd, too, and even made money by renting their boards.

Catri said they spent 27 days in Brevard that summer and never saw another surfer.

That winter in Miami was cold and miserable. So he decided to visit his sister, Florence Gordon, arriving on Hawaii’s Big Island with $15 in his pocket.

The 20-year-old Catri, lean and handsome, learned how to ride the great peaks at Waimea, and even landed a job at Dick Brewer’s surfboard factory.

In 1963, Hollywood arrived on the North Shore to complete its soon-to-be surf classic, “Ride the Wild Surf,” with Barbara Eden, Tab Hunter and Fabian.

Catri was asked if he’d like a job. They gave him the title of “aquatics adviser'” in which he positioned the surfers properly and showed film crews which angles were best. He also was an extra in the movie.

When he received his $1,500 check for a week’s work, he hopped in Fabian’s brand new Buick Rivera Coupe and headed to the bank. He began to smell the car’s rich interior upholstery and said to himself, “So this is what people work for.”

He realized he had to get in business for himself.

He spent the following winter surfing the North Shore, falling in love with Sharon (Shagg), a California gal whom he later married.

Six months later, feeling more comfortable “being a little fish in a little pond,” Catri moved back to Brevard County, and with $500 started the Satellite Beach Surf Shop in 1964 (in the back of the old 60-Minute Cleaners). Brewer would ship his Surfboard Hawaii-model boards to him and Catri would sell them for $125. His commission was $3.50 for each sale. He sold nearly 5,000 boards.

Matt Kechele, a former touring pro on the world circuit, and owner of Matt Kechele surfboards in Melbourne, remembers sweeping floors in Catri’s Primo Surf Shop in Cocoa Beach.
“When he opened his Hobie Surf Shop at Canaveral Pier, he had surfers like Mike Tabeling and Gary Propper on his team, and set a precedent for board building in this area,” Kechele said. “He employed a lot of craftsmen, like Greg Loehr and Larry Pope, and it was a great business model.”

With Propper, Tabeling, Mimi Munro, Joe Twombly, Sam Gornto, Bruce Valuzzi and Fletcher Sharpe on his team, Catri quickly became a surfing icon. Then, when Propper stunned California’s Dewey Weber to win the 1966 East Coast Championships, East Coast surfers suddenly were on the map.

“It always takes somebody to guide the way,” Propper once said.

Catri later opened Shagg’s Surf Shop off Fifth Avenue in Indialantic, putting together a dynamic group of surfers that included Kelly and Sean Slater, O’Hare, Todd Holland, David Spier and Troy Propper (Gary’s nephew).

“We used to pile in my dad’s brown VW van every Sunday and head down there to practice,” Sean Slater said. “We’d do exercises on the beach … he was a good guy, taking us in, teaching.”

Catri brought international pros to Sebastian Inlet, pros such as world champion Peter Townend and fellow Aussie Rabbit Bartholomew, for an event called the Florida Pro.

Later, Catri added the Stubbies pro contest, an event Kechele used as a launching pad to the circuit.

“I think we’re all grateful for his contributions that he made for surfing, for his friendship, for his moral support,” Kechele said. “We all looked up to him.”

Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards!

Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards!

Hey surfers – be sure to thank your Mom this Mothers Day! Tell her you appreciate her love and support for your surfing lifestyle. Here are a few Happy Mother’s Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards even if she’s not a surfer girl herself.

#1 The ULTIMATE Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards.

Matching Low Key Surfboards


Buy Mom her very own Low Key Surfboard. Hand shaped by local dude Neil Hamilton.

Matching designs are available so Mom & grom can be ultra cool riding waves together.




#2 Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas From Low Key Surfboards.

Surf Lessons. Give Mom a gift certificate for surf lessons and support a local community business as well. Call John down at Sebastian Inlet Surf and Sport. If you’re up in the Cocoa Beach area, give Jake a call at Flohana.

#3 Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards.

Surf Art. There is such artistic talent in our beachside community. Take the opportunity to support a local business. Check out Damien Share’s work if you want to be wowed and score points with Mom.

#4 Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards.

Subscription to a Surf Magazine. A great way to keep up with the surf world. Consider SurferToday, Surfer Magazine, Eastern Surf Magazine.   You can find Eastern Surf Magazine for free at local establishments like the BeachSide Cafe on 5th Ave next to Longboard House in Indialantic, FL.

#5 Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards.

My Mommy Taught Me How to Surf

Children’s Book. My Mommy Taught Me How to Surf by Joseph Tomarchio. Reading a surf book is a great way Moms and groms can spend quiet time together. Stop by and see Elva at Patrick Paperbacks. She’ll discount new books 20%, sells used or take trades for credit. If you’re hooked on Amazon of course you can get it there as well.




So there you have it – the top 5 Happy Mothers Day Gift Ideas from Low Key Surfboards. If you’d like to give Mom a custom board – call Neil Hamilton at Low Key Surfboards (239) 699-6568. Located at 131 Tomahawk Drive# 10C, Indian Harbor Beach, FL.

Gift certificates available.



Low Key Surfboards at Intracoastal Brewing Company’s Festival Saturday

Low Key Surfboards at Intracoastal Brewing Company’s Festival Saturday

Low Key Surfboards at Intracoastal Brewing Company Bands, Boards, Brew Festival 2017. Saturday, April 29, 2017. Noon - 10pm. Low Key Surfboards at Intracoastal Brewing Company Saturday, April 29th. Bands, Boards and Brew Festival 2017. Ricky Carroll, Chris Birch, Another Ride, Paddling Paradise, Villon Clothing, Sebastion Inlet Surf and Sport.

Low Key Surfboards at Intracoastal Brewing Company Bands, Boards, Brew Festival 2017. Saturday, April 29, 2017. Noon – 10pm.
Low Key Surfboards will have a booth at the Intercoastal Brewing Company Bands, Boards & Brews Festival.

Stop on by for the brewery located at 652 West Eau Gallie Boulevard, Melbourne, FL 32935. The Intercoastal Brewing Company has paired up with Surfrider Foundation – Sebastian Inlet Chapter and Clean Surf for this year’s festival.

The event is featuring some of the best local bands Central Florida has to offer. Oranga Tanga will be performing and Low Key Surfboards will be cheering on Anthony Darmana, as he plays the djembe, all sorts of percussion and other instruments. There will be food trucks, vendors, and the best local surfboard shapers in Brevard County.

Of course the Intracoastal Brewing Company will be offering your favorite spring time brews: Lemongrass Ginger Saison, The Rupert Holmes (Pina Colada Hefe), Jasmine Green Tea Pale Ale, Peanut Butter Jelly Time, and the Blueberry Florida Wiesse!

Neil Hamilton, the shaper at Low Key Surfboards, has designed a method of creating beautiful works of art – and yes, they are meant to be surfed. Surfboards are available in Modern Foam and Old School Hollow Cedar.  All Low Key Surfboards foam boards are 100% epoxy making them strong, light and responsive. Construction for wood boards start with each cedar strip being sorted by color & texture, then matched to create unique patterns. Some boards have separate inlay designs which are set into the surface of the board. Other boards have a decor wood burned in place on the surface.

Stop by the Low Key Surfboards booth and check out our latest boards. If you’re looking for a custom board come visit us at the shop located at 131 Tomahawk Dr, Unit 10C, Indian Harbour Beach, FL. We’ll help you create your dream board.

Be sure to add this event to your weekend schedule. Brevard County has so much to offer so get out there, soak up the sun and have some fun!






Low Key Surfboards Recognizes American Sign Language Day

Low Key Surfboards Recognizes American Sign Language Day

Low Key Surfboards Recognizes American Sign Language Day.

Today is American Sign Language (ASL) Day. This language used by deaf communities emerged back in 1817 at the American School for the Deaf in Hartford, Connecticut. Since then, ASL has spread widely across America and other countries. It is known to many people and even offered as a second language course in colleges.


Why Low Key Surfboards Incorporates Sign Language in Company Logo.

Low Key Surfboards incorporates sign language into our logo by utilizing the hand signs which signify the letters “L” and “K” for the “Low Key” in Low Key Surfboards. The story behind the hand signs goes back a few years. In the 70’s, Low Key Surfboards shaper Neil Hamilton was surfing on Long Beach Island (LBI) in New Jersey. Yep, the location of the original Ron Jon Surf Shop.

Neil’s love for surfing and the beach lead him to his first summer job as a lifeguard at the Jersey Shore. Of course, teenagers on LBI were always hanging out at the beach soaking up the sun and riding waves. One kid in particular always seemed to hold back from the rest. As it turns out, he was deaf. He wasn’t able to verbally communicate, but he did know sign language. Soon the lifeguards and other guys on the beach were learning sign language that summer. It was great to see this kid become one of the gang as they all learned to communicate with each other.

No one knows what ever happened to that happy boy interested in rescue boats with dreams of being a lifeguard some day. However,the fond memories have always stayed with Neil. He decided to incorporate the hand signs into his Low Key Surfboards logo.

How can you celebrate American Sign Language Day?

Well, here’s a suggestion.  As you’re passing people along your way today, flash the Low Key Surfboards sign language hand sign.

Motorcycling + Surfing = Motorcycle Surfing.

Robbie Maddison: surfing Killers, in Todos Santos, Mexico | Photo: Vice Sports

“I don’t know what it is about me that draws me to risk my life. We’ve come so far in the development of the bike, so I wanted to push the boundaries ever further.”

Robbie Maddison has been up and riding for 30 years but, lately, he is making a career for himself in motorcycle surfing. After taking his bike to Teahupoo, the Australian embarked on a dangerous Mexican challenge.

We learned from his previous stunt that Maddison designed the skis himself. A lot of people said it couldn’t be done, but he made it a reality. And now here he is – ready for another impossible mission on the island of Todos Santos.  (Surfer Today, April 13, 2017).

Original Pipe Dream Video

Watch this unbelieveable YouTube video of the original pipe dream event. It is absolutely unbelieveable!!!


Surfers New Years Resolutions 2017

Surfers New Year’s Resolutions 2017

Surfers New Year’s Resolutions 2017.

New Year’s 2017 is upon us. Geeze, where did 2016 go?!! The good thing is that we have an opportunity for a fresh start. A chance to create change, grow, improve ourselves. Looking for some ideas for your resolution? Here’s a list of suggestions from Low Key Surfboards

1. Surf More
Well, this is a no brainer! Easier said than done though. So why not surf with friends? This way a commitment is made and it’s more likely that you’ll actually GO surfing. Don’t have any friends? Still no excuse. Check out a Meetup and go catch some waves!

2. Develop Surf Skills
Challenge yourself to learn a new skill. Book a lesson and then practice with patience and perseverance. Low Key Surfboards recommends giving a holler to John at Sebastian Inlet Surf & Sport in Melbourne Beach or Jake at Flohana in Cocoa Beach for a lesson.

3. Stretch
Don’t underestimate the importance of stretching before hitting the waves. Avoid injury, maximize performance & prepare mentally by taking a few minutes to stretch before surfing.  Check out this short video for tips…

4. Go on a Surf Vacation
What better way to put some excitement into your life’s journey and work on surfing skills! Maybe taking the plunge and heading to Australia isn’t in your cards. Well then, consider a short get away to Costa Rica or Nicaragua.

5. Show More Respect to Mother Nature
The ocean is Mother Nature’s gift to surfers. Grab that litter floating around out there. Pick up the beaches. Hey, maybe even organize a beach clean up day in your community. Every little bit helps.

6. Switch Up Boards
Variety is the spice of life! Maybe you’re a shortboarder, check out longboarding. You don’t know what you might be missing unless you give it a try. Try out a friend’s board or rent one from a local shop. If you discover a new love and need a new board contact us at Low Key Surfboards. Neil Hamilton can shape up your dream board at an affordable price.

So there ya have it. Make your 2017 resolution and keep moving it forward.

Happy New Year fellow surfers!

Ocean Reef Beach Festival 2016 – The Thing To Do This Weekend!

Ocean Reef Beach Festival 2016 – The Thing To Do This Weekend!

Ocean Reef Beach Festival 2016 – The Thing To Do This Weekend!

Where?  Pelican Beach in Satellite Beach, FL

When?  Saturday, December 3rd from 10am-5pm.

Why?  To check out these cool things going on as told by the Ocean Reef Beach Festival folks……



December 3rd, 2016, is the date for the 5th Annual Ocean-Reef-Beach Festival to return to Pelican Beach Park! Celebrate the ocean lifestyle with us!

Continuing our annual tradition, the Ocean-Reef-Beach Festival returns to Pelican Beach Park on Saturday, December 3rd, 2016. Join us in celebrating the ocean lifestyle in a family atmosphere with fun activities for all ages. From educational programs in the clubhouse to a sea turtle maze for the kids, there will be something for the whole beach community. Don’t miss out on the Brevard Hawaiian Dancers performing a Live Hawaiian Ceremonial Dance through the Festival around noon time.

The “Slow-Down, Chow-Down Chowder Cook-Off” and our other food vendors will tempt your taste buds while live music entertains. The very best of our local ocean arts community, local surfboard shapers, and other vendors help you take care of all your Christmas shopping. Come to have fun; leave with more knowledge and a renewed appreciation of our ocean, our reef, and our beach!

Clubhouse Speakers will present Educational Presentations at this year’s Ocean-Reef-Beach Festival throughout the day in the Pelican Beach Park Clubhouse between 10 am – 4 pm, Saturday, December 3rd.

One More Thing.

Be sure to look for Low Key Surfboards‘ friend and artist, Debbie Tweedie. She will be displaying her photography at the Ocean Reef Beach Festival 2016.  You can also see her work at the Studios of Cocoa Beach, a newly opened art cooperative in Cocoa Beach.

If you catch up with Debbie at the festival this weekend, ask how her grandson likes his Low Key Surfboards Toddler Board.  No child is ever too young to start surfing!

If you need a new surfboard, contact Low Key Surfboards.  Pick out your favorite artistically designed EPS/Epoxy board. All are hand shaped locally at Low Key Surfboards from start to finish. Stop by the shop at 131 Unit 10C Tomahawk Dr, Indian Harbour Beach, FL.


Surf life meets STAY AT HOME BECAUSE YOU’RE WELL holiday.

Surf life meets “STAY AT HOME BECAUSE YOU’RE WELL” Holiday.

This is what celebrating Stay At Home Because You’re Well Holiday looks like…


Photo: Sloane/WSL.

Yes, this is an official annual holiday every November 30th.  What’s the point?  Well… to STOP!  Step away from the cell phone!  Forget about texts, emails, voicemails, snailmails!  Call out “well” from work for a day!  Take time to slow down, breathe.  Enjoy this thing called life for heaven’s sake!

Surfing is the best way to do just that!  In fact, maybe the definition of “holiday” should be considered through the eyes of our friends over the big pond.  Holiday = vacation.  Make it longer than just a day.

This article by Wandrful sums up pretty well how surfing is a great way to stay well in life.

Why surfing is good for the mind, body and soul

Surfing is definitely good for the mind, body and soul….here’s why!


Beautiful surfer woman surfing during summer vacation

Like any new skill or activity, you need to dedicate time to learn it. For most that aren’t born to surf, it does take that little bit longer. But the key is patience. Not only to learn how to surf a wave, but the patience to wait for that perfect wave to surf. Through surfing you will quickly learn the lesson of perseverance and the reward it can give.


surfer silhouette during sunset

To put it simply, surfing is a full body workout. Now it’s not your everyday full body workout you get at the local gym from your ripped and visually appealing Personal Trainer J. This is a unique workout using muscle fibers you never knew existed. From paddling out past the wave break to the quick snap onto the board and balance, surfing is an all-round perfect blend of strength and cardio training.


Surfer sunset

Sometimes life’s burdens can dump on you like the crashing waves on a sandy beach. Well, surfing can help you improve your mental health and give you a great outlet to relive stress and tension. Trust me, you will feel happier, more energetic, and more refreshed and composed. Why? Surfing brings you closer to nature…well right in it to be exact. There is nothing like floating in the ocean, feeling every little movement of the water while pondering about life’s sensational mysteries. It really does bring you closer to the earth and makes you think about what you can do to keep it a beautiful place for all.


Torquay beach - Australie

If you think about it…surfing is a great way to get traveling and visit some of the best places in the world. Surfing gets you exploring new surroundings, meeting fellow surfers and making more holiday moments you will cherish for years to come.



Surfing Florida History 3 Minute Video

Surfing Florida History 3 Minute Video.

Surfing Florida History 3 Minute Video.
Here’s a history lesson you’ll enjoy, check out this YouTube Surfing Florida History 3 Minute Video.

Surfing in Florida was happening way back in 1930’s. It was the surfing movies & magazines of the 60’s that brought this scene to the masses for America. By 1965, Florida had it’s own surfing magazine. Shortly thereafter, surf teams and clubs began to pop up. Bill Feinberg opened Oceanside Surfshop in Cocoa Beach, FL and the Florida surf world was off and making history.

Short boards hit the scene next. Surfers began stripping down their longboards which created the beginning of a shaping boom. To this day, our Space Coast area of Florida is known for their amazingly skillful shapers.

Among these current day shapers is Neil Hamilton at Low Key Surfboards located right off Tomahawk in Indian Harbor Beach, FL.  If you’re looking for a new board, give us a call, we can set you up! Artistically designed EPS/Epoxy boards are hand shaped at Low Key Surfboards from start to finish right here in the USA!

In case you didn’t know, we are fortunate enough to have a local surf museum right in our back yard!  Yep, the Florida Surf Museum, located in Cocoa Beach, FL preserves and documents the unique history and culture of East Coast surfing. Check out their events, exhibits and programs about the history and traditions of the local surfing community.


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