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The Montauk Surf Museum will present ocean science, as well as the art and history of surfing to visitors and schools in creative ways.
128 backers pledged $29,939 to help bring this project to life.

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$29,939

128

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The museum will tackle the science behind the waves. The above video is a dramatic animation of the winds generated by Hurricane Eduarde in the Mid-Atlantic on Sept. 17, 2014. Each storm has a story. Such animations will be paired with videos and photos to help visitors appreciate the natural forces responsible for waves, currents, and storm surge. Dalton Portella's photos, below, show Hurricane Eduarde's waves wrapping onto Montauk's rock reefs. A swell to remember.

The mission of the Montauk Surf Museum, formally known as the Oceans Institute of the Montauk Historical Society, is to tell the story of how Montauk, N.Y. came to be one of the foremost surfing destinations on the East Coast. Surfing, yes, but we aim to reach beneath the waves and along the coast to explain how sea-level rise and erosion are shaping our future.

Photography taken by Car Pelleteri for her book, "Montauk: Surf + Turf"
Photography taken by Car Pelleteri for her book, "Montauk: Surf + Turf"

The story will be told within the context of the sport’s Polynesian roots, but will focus on the way in which natural features, weather, and societal change combined to bring the Hawaiian Sport of Kings to a once-isolated fishing village at the eastern end of Long Island. The science of surfing, which includes coastal dynamics, topics like sea-level rise, as well as our local marine species and ecosystems, will be a natural extension of the existing installations at the adjacent Montauk Lighthouse Museum. 

The Museum’s location is perhaps its prominent feature. It overlooks three of Montauk’s (and the East Coast’s) best surf breaks. The Museum space will include electronic displays that portray the science of waves; how they are generated, and what is it that gives Montauk’s waves their singular attraction. 

The “Swells to Remember” section will feature photos and video of outstanding waves with an accompanying display of satellite imagery of the weather responsible for creating the memorable swells. And, we intend to collect an oral history -- surfers talking story -- of waves and wave-riding on Long Island.

We view the Surf Museum/Oceans Institute as a community resource. Suggestions and contributions are welcome.

The Museum will include a section that tells how 18th and 19th Century explorers, as well as whalers from East Coast ports including nearby Sag Harbor, brought word of the strange sport/ritual from the South Pacific to the western world. Installations will include a display of surfboards to show the evolution of surfboard design. Long Island-based surfboard designers and shapers will be featured, as well as Montauk’s surfing pioneers.

The Museum will include an archive of interviews with surfers, as well as photographs, and will feature special events to highlight artists, musicians, and filmmakers inspired by surfing and the sea. A virtual aquarium will introduce the sea creatures -- some with big teeth – with whom we share with sea. The museum’s installations will be ever-changing, and we plan to make visits to the facility a regular part of school curriculums. For instance, the musem will sponsor the catch and release of sharks fitted with satellite tags that will enable them to be tracked on their migrations. 

Our Web site will present a virtual tour of the Museum, and we plan to create a museum app that will allow visitors to use their cell phones and/or tablets we provide to enjoy a self-guided tour.

The Surf Museum/Oceans Institute is located in the building next to the Montauk Lighthouse constructed in 1896. We will restore the building’s windows, doors, and sky-light cupola with the help of Architect Stephen Alesch.
The Surf Museum/Oceans Institute is located in the building next to the Montauk Lighthouse constructed in 1896. We will restore the building’s windows, doors, and sky-light cupola with the help of Architect Stephen Alesch.
Projected displays will address an ever-changing variety of subjects.
Projected displays will address an ever-changing variety of subjects.

Kickstarter funds will go toward the completion of the ocean blue flooring and the restoration of our building's doors and windows.

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  We at the Montauk Surf Museum are stoked. Hope you are too.

Follow our journey at: @mtksurfmuseum

Risks and challenges

There are always issues that arise in the completion of projects like this. We as a team will continue to collect support throughout the next few months in order to make sure everyone's generous donations are put to good use.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    A limited edition surf pin! Put it on your jacket, put it on your beach tote, pin it to your surfboard bag!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    A first edition Montauk Surf Museum Notebook

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    A 16 x 24 Justin Burkle (Montauk photographer and Founder of 41 Degrees North) photograph print

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    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    Custom designed large-size Fred Stelle Architects canvas tote bag

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Limited edition Montauk Surf Museum T-Shirt

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Custom Shaped 6 10" Murphy Wintersquash Surfboard ... to ride your next winter swell!

    Specs:
    Lengths: 6' 10"
    Nose: 10¾"
    Mid: 18
    Tail: 13½"
    Thickness: 2 1/8"
    Fins: Tri-fin
    Includes a leash

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    Pledge $1,800 or more About $1,800

    a Tony Caramanico custom surfboard. It is of highest quality and has Tony’s art across the deck . It is a design he made when he was a competitive surfer. In the past it was introduced with Phoenix surfboards in 1989. Then with Greg Noll 1991-2001 , Channin surfboards and Surftech until 2013. Now currently with Joel Tudor surfboards.

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    A guaranteed boating trip to participate in the annual Montauk no-kill, tag-and-release shark tournament with Rusty Drumm during the summer of 2015

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    Pledge $4,900 or more About $4,900

    A large canvas art piece by local famed artist and native Montauk surfer, Tony Caramanico

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    A surf lesson with Pro Surfer Quincy Davis followed by lunch at The Ranch

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Funding period

- (30 days)