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Lillian Boyd, Dana Point Times

Have you noticed the mysterious surfboards relaying messages of hope around Dana Point?

Mary Hartmann, owner of Girl in the Curl, says something compelled her to go to her shop on Tuesday, despite its closure amid the coronavirus pandemic. She didn’t expect to see an art installation of a surfboard with a special message.

“I was in a low vibration,” Hartmann said. “I hadn’t gone to the shop in a couple weeks; I was in my pajamas, hadn’t brushed my hair.”

Hartmann closed Girl in the Curl in early March, ahead of the state of California’s directives to close what had been deemed “nonessential” businesses in order to maintain social distancing practices. The shop has been a longtime staple in the Dana Point surf community for women and girls.

Hartmann arrived to check on the shop and check the mail when she noticed that a surfboard mural had been installed near the entrance of Girl in the Curl. “Spread hope, not fear,” the surfboard said.

Photo: Lillian Boyd

“It’s so heartwarming and touching,” Hartmann said. “I feel better; I know lots of people feel better. Now there’s this movement . . .  being ‘Dana Point strong.’ I feel so honored that someone chose Girl in the Curl to be part of that platform.”

She says the boards are popping up all over Dana Point and Laguna Beach. So far, there have been sightings in Dana Point Harbor near Coffee Importers, at the intersection of Golden Lantern and Stonehill Drive near Dana Hills High School, Strands Beach and near Mission Hospital in Laguna Beach.

Photo: Lillian Boyd
Photo: Lillian Boyd

Dana Point Times reached out to the offices of Dana Point City Hall, Dana Point Harbor and Dana Hills High School, and it is unclear at this time who is behind the art installations.

“That’s what’s rad . . . will they ever step forward?” Hartmann said. “Who knows?”

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