SACRED CRAFT in VENTURA Photos and Article by Paul Tralka

SACRED CRAFT in VENTURA Photos and Article by Paul Tralka

Ventura, CA- April 2010 Sacred Craft- There is a tradeshow for everything these days. I’ve been to a few strange ones, I admit.  Whether it was a pet trade show, garden supply trade show, or even watching trade shows on TV about fancy cars or tattoos.  I’ve been to quite a few surfing industry trade shows too, and Sacred Craft takes the cake.  The unique thing about the Sacred Craft Surfboard Expo is it brings together passionate craftsman/woman, surfers, designers, and even collectors to talk surfboards….not energy drinks, stretchy boardshorts, or bikini’s (well, ok bikini’s may have been discussed).   It allows conversation between the shaper and the surfer.  It provides the opportunity to speak with shapers, guys like Gerry Lopez and Robert August.  One of the best parts of the surfing world is that our heroes, legends, and superstars are accessibleWe often forget the core of the whole surf world is right under our feet, literally.  In a world where craftsman can be replaced by computers and machines, or products can be produced oversees to increase revenue, it is here, at Sacred Craft, where you can see surfing still has strong roots.  It gives attendants the opportunity to “talk story” and technique with peers, but also with the Masters. 

This year the Sacred Craft honored master shaper, Renny Yater, a perfect fit for the region.  Yater worked with names like Noll and Velzy, but one thing stuck out on the point breaks of Santa Barbara, the Yater Spoon.  The concept here is to have a handful of today’s shapers copy a classic Yater Spoon and see who comes out with the best shape.  Throughout the event, planers and compressors roar as consumers peruse the shaping bays.  Noses pressed up on the shaping bay observing every pass of the planer.  Bleachers with focused fans attentive to the detail that gives the board its magic.  This year the six shapers were Todd Proctor, Nick Pallandrini, Dennis Ryder, Michel Junod, Matt Moore, and Wayne Rich.  Wayne came away with the win, but similar to going surfing together, everyone had fun. 

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