Historical Photo of Canaveral Pier with the pier extending into the distance. At the top, a large red and white sign reads: Canaveral Pier. On the left, a smaller black and white sign reads: COCOA GOOD VIBRATIONS BEACH. On the right is a Ron Jon Surfing Shop sign.

Canaveral Pier (Cocoa Beach Pier)

The Canaveral Pier is likely the most iconic surf spot in Florida along with Sebastian Inlet. Built in 1962, right when the surfing craze hit Florida, it immediately became a focal point for east coast surfing. The structure concentrated sand around it which amplified and groomed the often meager swell, contributing to Cocoa Beach’s reputation as the “Small Wave Capital of the World”.

In 1962 Ron Dimenna opened RonJon Surf Shop, then a few years later Dick Catri replaced it with Shagg’s Surf Shop. The pier hosted the Easter Surf Festival for fifty years and many national and international surf stars have performed there.

Now known as the Cocoa Beach pier, the waves at the pier continue to attract a daily crew of regulars, surf schools, tourists and colorful characters. They provide entertainment for spectators watching the action while sipping a beer or eating a burger at one of the eateries on the pier.

Canaveral Pier in the 70’s


  • I worked at the Canaveral Pier in 1970 as a wee lad of 17. Jeff was the manager and Shirley ran the grill. I painted, cleaned, scrubbed, took out the trash, flipped burgers, did whatever they told me to do. Learned how to surf that summer as well. My first time away from home and what a great summer it was.

    Mike Field12 May, 2017
  • I went to a school,called Hydrospace Technical Institute(it was part of F.I.T.) in 1970 located just across Atlantic Blvd across from the pier. When the surf was up there was no one in class.

    Dave21 March, 2019

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