On June 10th the entire surfing community came together at Sebastian Inlet State Park to honor our good friend and mentor Dick Catri. Dick had passed away recently due to complications after a series of strokes. Dick was known as the Godfather of surfing on the East Coast, being the first to bring surfing to the east coast, the first to bring surf contests to the East Coast and known for developing top pro surfers in our area. Kelly Slater comes to mind. Remember that picture of young Kelly in front of Shagg’s Surf Shop, posing with the other Team Catri riders? In that photo all of those surfboards were airbrushed by ArtLabs owner Steve McElwee, and the sign over the doorway to Shagg’s Surf Shop too. Steve started his career working for Dick at his surfboard factory airbrushing the graphics on surfboards. Steve said, Dick used to tell me “make them look fast!”
Thousands of people have paid tribute to Dick and the Memorial PaddleOut at the Inlet was epic and will live on in history. To commemorate the event we wanted to do something special. Since ArtLab does T-Shirts and Signs the answer was obvious. We decided we would do a memorial T-Shirt. Roger Sinigoi owner of Stone Mosaics in Palm Bay and longtime surf friend wanted to help too and he donated some funds toward the project. Steve called on Phil Roberts, who is a first rate illustrator from Melbourne, who now lives in Newport Beach, California. You may have seen his work at the movies or on a magazine cover, his works are too numerous to name so here is a link to his website philroberts.com
When Steve called, Phil offered to do a commemorative piece for the PaddleOut. After all Dick Catri was the first to recognize and promote Phil’s talent too. The resulting art was so awesome! We decided to also do posters and banners for the Memorial too. With the help of Roger and Phil we donated all of the shirts and posters in Dick’s memory. Donations were accepted at the Inlet and all proceeds were given to the Catri family to offset the considerable expense to put on the Memorial that day. After the event the banners were donated to the East Coast Surf Museum and to the Catri Family. We understand one of them is on it’s way to Hawaii for a Memorial PaddleOut to be held there on the North Shore!
Over two hundred tees and one hundred posters were gobbled up on Saturday morning. Many people who arrived a little later did not get one. We have been asked to make more and we have done so. The shirts are now available at our office, Catalyst Surf Shop in Melbourne Beach and the MTB Surf Emporium in Melbourne. Posters are still available through our office only. Proceeds from the sale of these items will be donated to Surfers for Autism at the request of the Catri Family and Phil Roberts.
Rest In Peace our dear friend Dick Catri 1938 -2017
ArtLab T Shirts and Signs