It might not seem like a surfer’s paradise, but alongside the East River a swell is brewing. Mollusk NYC, a new surfboard shop on the corner of River Street and Metropolitan in Williamsburg, is now the only store in the city that sells hand-shaped surfboards exclusively. And they’re celebrating their opening with a “mega-ultra” party Saturday evening.
“It’s a very underserved community in Brooklyn, even though there are thousands of surfers in New York City,” says Chris Gentile, the store’s manager. A photographer and surfer who lives in Williamsburg, Gentile decided to open the store with the support of his friend, John McCambridge, who owns Mollusk Surf Shop in San Francisco.
Mollusk NYC doesn’t sell brand-name boards like Quiksilver. Instead, they carry hand-crafted boards by well known shapers like Chris Christenson and Manuel Caro from the West Coast, and Mark Petrocelli, a young craftsman from Long Island.
“They’re all extremely good surfers, which is a big part of being a good shaper, knowing how each board works in the ocean,” says Gentile, who frequents Long Beach for NY waves.
Caro — whose signature board is the Quad Fish (mandalacustomshapes.com), with a fishtail back — will be at the opening party on Saturday. Music and the outdoor projection of “Thread” (threadthefilm.com), a new surf film by Patrick Trefz, will also be part of the festivities, along with an art exhibition next door at Secret Project Robot, featuring work about the ocean. Afterward, you can order a Red Stripe and dip your toes in the sand at Surf Bar (139 N. 6th), and pretend that Brooklyn really has become the new Santa Cruz.
8:30pm, Saturday July 7, River St. and Metropolitan, mollusknyc.com
Text by Sara.