We had the good fortune of connecting with Kristy Murphy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kristy, is there something you can share with us that those outside of the industry might not be aware of?
The one thing that most people are super unaware of is how hard it is to do what we do. Taking care of others logistically, guaranteeing that our guests have a great vacation and ultimately teaching them what it is to be a surfer is a lot of work. Surfing is hard. One of the hardest activities that exists and can take a lifetime to master. One of our great mentors Linda Benson explains that “surfing is a million dollar experience earned one nickel at a time.”
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
First of all I love what I do. I couldn’t see myself doing anything else. Growing up on the ocean in Florida, I’ve always known that I was going to have a job of the sea. I didn’t start surfing until I was older though but once I started I couldn’t stop. I dedicated everything I had to become a better surfer and still do. Surfing isn’t a career for everyone, and is barely a career for those who have the passion to do it. After I won the Women’s World Longboard Championship in 2005, I thought to myself “Wow! I’m doing this!” Surfing at that time, and maybe still is, wasn’t super supportive of long boarding or of women surfers in general. Male dominance of surfing is a real deal and no one is going to roll over and let you have their spot out in the lineup, nor in business. You have to work hard, have thick skin, and persevere to survive in the surf industry. That is how you create your brand in today’s world of business. If you are a fake people will eventually figure that out and you’ll be done.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
It’s funny. When our guests arrive, they want a schedule for the week. They need to know what the plan is and at Kristy Murphy’s Siren Surf Adventures we take the “Adventure” part seriously. First thing we tell them is that time does not exist with us. All you need to know is we are going to surf our brains out, eat amazing food that is local, organic, and sometimes grown on our farm which we have incorporated into our surf adventures, drink delicious cocktails, and get a good night’s rest. Everyday is different. Every week we have guests is different. As former professional surfers we have a distinguished list of friends who include legends like Corky Carroll, Linda Benson, Pinoi Makalena, Megan Abubo, Jen Smith, and the list just goes on and on. The best part is though, you just never know which one is going to show up to surf with us, or cook for us i.e. Jen Smith…yuuuummmmmm. Or maybe we will hang at the farm with all of our donkey’s, piggy, chickens, cats, dog, bulls. It’s all so classic. Most importantly it’s a guaranteed great vacation!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Surfing is a lineage that is passed down from those who came before you. We teach that to all the surfers and new surfers who come surf with us on our retreats. My shoutout recognizes these people and many others. My partner Cat and her experiences growing up in Hawaii, with her mentors pertaining to etiquette, style, and technique which is a huge part of surfing and especially when learning how to surf. Jammah Kekai, Lori Saxman, Gabby Makalena, Des Desoto, Megan Abubo, Ken “Woozer” Goring, and Ian Akahi Masterson. I’d also like to recognize Corky Carroll, Linda Benson, and Robert “Wingnut” Weaver as an ambassador of fun.
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Tanya Boggs Cat Slatinsky