Santa Cruz, California, 30 years ago...
My father Rick Noe was making the rules and calling the shots out at the Lane, while shaping surfboards for the best surfers in town. My mother Laura Powers was a former U.S. women's surfing champion (1973) and a well-known surfboard artisan by the time she moved to Santa Cruz in '76. The SC surfing community already knew she was coming, her reputation preceding her as a beautiful accomplished talent in the board industry. Ricky being king of the Westside arranged a date and the deal was soon sealed.
Needless to say, I spent my childhood in a surf factory, many factories
in fact, watching my parents work. I was the son of two surfers gifted
in their ability to make the toys that we base our lives around. I had a
permanently sunburned nose and would go to bed with sand in my hair.
These surroundings made it inevitable that in the future I would build
and ride my own surfboards, just like Pops did.
Tragically, my dad broke his neck when I was 10 years old. Our time
surfing together was cut painfully short. I had to learn early to take care
of my father and myself. Imagine a single parent trying to get me to
school on time, a halo around his head and 4 screws secured into his skull
to hold his neck in place. Ricky's shaping career was over in a flash by a
freak accident. Life is fragile. NOE Surfboards fell off the map and out of the limelight.
In 2001, pops and I went in together and set up a shaping bay at 2111 Deleware. This is the same building where he shaped and sanded his and Doug Haut's boards. The same building my mom did thousands of flawless resin pin lines in. The same building that has been a part of me from my conception to this very day.
For the past 10 years I've been learning and having fun shaping myself boards that I have taken around the world, speaking different languages and surfing ridiculously good waves. I've spent countless hours around very talented craftsmen, honing my shaping skills and gaining knowledge from the very best. I have gained knowledge from and worked with the biggest names in the Santa Cruz surf industry.
Now I am writing my own history. The second generation of NOE surfboards has emerged literally and figuratively and I am determined to regain the throne. I have taken over where my father left off, with new boards, new ideas and new riders. NOE Surfboards looks into the future, while never forgetting the past.
RIP Rick Noe.