Designate Malibu as California's first State Marine Cultural Preservation Area

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Let's make surfing history again. Join us to designate the iconic Malibu surfing area (Los Angeles County, CA) as California's first State Marine Cultural Preservation Area; recognizing its worldwide contributions to the history and culture of the sport.

ABOUT MALIBU // From 1945 through 1959, Malibu played an integral role in the development of surfboard design and production, in addition to surfing style. The long rides offered by Malibu’s smaller, well–shaped waves (one of the world's “original perfect waves”) placed it as a center of the evolution of surfing style and technology, as well as a cultural evolution of what surfers looked like –– in and out of the water. Malibu surfers perfected a relaxed, but aggressive, “cool” style of surfing and many of the era’s best came from, or regularly surfed at, Malibu. Their accomplishments helped bring surfing into a modern age, and earned Malibu an international reputation as a destination for high–performance surfing.

Although new ideas of surfing were developing worldwide, Malibu served as a cultural, technological, and intellectual arena for its expert surfers and surfboard shapers. It was a focusing point for surfboard design theory, the deconstruction of surfing style, and the development of a lifestyle that defined its era of surfing while serving as a template for the next. Malibu, then, is associated with the broader history of surfing; it is an important California locale which represents an evolution of modern surfing both in the minds of surfers and the general public.

ABOUT THE MALIBU HISTORIC DISTRICT // The Malibu Historic District (2018) is the first listing in the National Register of Historic Places based on surfing history, recognizing the iconic surfing area's worldwide contributions to the history and culture of the sport. The 160-acre district is entirely composed of public property and includes: the First Point, Second Point, and Third Point surf breaks, the Malibu Pier, and portions of both Surfrider and Malibu Lagoon State Beaches. The listing is site-specific and secures protections in state and federal coastal project planning explicitly from the point of view of the area's significance, in this case surfing.

In addition to the coastal planning protections secured through the National Register listing, the Malibu Historic District makes no changes to public access, public safety, nearby private property rights, public property ownership, or the area's current uses, such as: pier fishing, summer camps, special events and, of course, surfing.

ABOUT STATE MARINE CULTURAL PRESERVATION AREAS // The second phase of the Malibu project advances the National Register listing as a qualifying step for other protections based on historical or cultural importance. The CA Marine Managed Areas Improvement Act (2000) establishes State Marine Cultural Preservation Areas as, "nonterrestrial marine or estuarine area[s] designated so the managing agency may preserve cultural objects or sites of historical, archaeological, or scientific interest in marine areas." (CA Pub Res Code § 36700 (2013)).

LET'S MAKE HISTORY AGAIN // State and national recognition of these exceptional surfing areas is important to understanding the patterns of our history and promoting a richer interpretation of our coastal environment.

Please use the COMMENTS section to express your support and share your personal and family stories of Malibu. Over 450 people endorsed the Malibu Historic District and were part of the official nomination. Join us in making surfing history again. Your signature counts!

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