The July 1991 issue of Orange Coast ran a feature called “Cash a Wave,” which chronicled booming surf-related businesses in Orange County. Surfer magazine publisher Steve Pezman said there were more surf companies here than in all of Australia. Corky Carroll, who won the U.S. Surfing Championships three times in the ’60s, was quoted as saying, “If Hawaii is the heart of surfing, Huntington Beach is the brain.” Orange Coast appeared to be alone in that assessment as some published reports in 1991 said the surf scene was disappearing, and the U.S. Open of Surfing, then known as the OP Pro, took a two-year leave of absence in 1992 and ’93.
Today, more than 500,000 people attend the U.S. Open of Surfing, which starts July 23. Surf City fosters businesses such as Jack’s Surfboards and Sakal Surfboards, and youngsters still can learn from Corky Carroll, at his surf school.