Maroochydore SLSC 1958


Maroochydore Surf Life Saving Club Back Then, 1958

The Maroochydore Surf Life Saving Club has a long and proud history. The club was formed by 12 patrolling members on New Year's Day 1916, after a wave of drownings in the previous years. Maroochydore Beach has been continuously patrolled since then. Remarkably, to date, not one life has been lost since in the patrolled area. Even during the war years, with barbed wire right across the beach to repel any invasion, the beaches were patrolled at Maroochydore. The club house evolved and changed over the decades, this painting depicts it as it was in 1958.

The American Life Guard Teams visit to Australia in conjunction with the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne was a milestone in Australian wave riding technology. Their balsa wood surf craft and the skills they displayed in the surf was an amazing awakening for us all. Without the availability of balsa wood in Australia for several years, our innovative surfboard builders managed to create similar craft from plywood timber, nails and glue. The result was the plywood, hollow, rounded wood rail surfboard with a deep single tail fin. Seen here is a lucky surfer waxing up his transitional board locally called an Okinuee. Another surfer proudly shows off his new balsawood Malibu board to two inquisitive bystanders.

From its humble beginnings in 1916 the Club has grown to become one of Australia's largest and most successful Clubs with 200 patrolling members and over 11,000 general members.