Evelyn O’Doherty from Standup Journal put this article together about Jason at Little Bay Boards…
“It hasn’t always been rainbows and butterflies. But then, nothing worth chasing ever is.” These are words spoken by Little Bay Boards owner/artist & board builder, Jason Thelen. Jason prides himself in creating a product as individualized for his customers as the way they ride.
Little Bay Boards are handcrafted in Petoskey, Michigan. That’s right, Michigan. It’s about as far from the seacoast as one can get, but owner/creator Jason Thelen has a ‘passion that runs deep across these tables’.
It’s only natural Jason Thelen feels a deep rooted connection to nature. He lives near Lake Michigan and its heavily wooded areas to the north in Michigan state. He is also the great-great-great grandson of Chief Petoskey, a legendary figure among the native Odawas and the namesake of the town he lives in.
It started with a simple request from Jason’s then nine-year old daughter. She wanted a paddle board, but she didn’t want one bought from the store. As a master carpenter, Jason knew he could create something as special and as one-of-a-kind as his daughter. In the spring of 2012 production began on his first custom Stand Up Paddle Board.
Handcrafted with the future in mind
Today, Jason creates in order to fulfill his need to give back. He offers custom and off-the-rack hollow core stand up paddle and surfboards made completely out of wood. He is as dedicated to preserving the environment as he is to selling his product. And the product is an eco-friendly paddle board that will be in one’s family … forever. They are lightweight due to its hollow core design and Little Bay Boards now ships worldwide.
“TO KNOW IN MY SOUL THAT LITTLE BAY BOARDS DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE, NOT ONLY TO THE RIDERS OF THESE BOARDS, BUT TO THE FUTURE GENERATIONS SUCH AS MY CHILDREN.” – JASON THELEN
Little Bay Boards uses reclaimed wood and locally-sourced materials when building a paddle board. There are no chemical processes or polyurethane foam used in production. Strips of wood are meticulously chosen for their beauty and pieced together by hand, in a hollow board design glassed together with low VOC resin. Simple by design, but virtually indestructible.
It’s about “changing the look, the feel and the ride”.
“I’m not a granola. I haven’t been known to hug a tree but if anything can bring a person closer to nature it’s riding a wood board while gazing at the wildlife beneath you, feeling the wind around your whole body, and listening to water lap against the hollow of the board. I now understand what people mean when they say Hawaii calls them because that’s what my board does to me.”
– Happy Customer
Little Bay Boards, crafted on the shores of Lake Michigan, are now available to be shipped worldwide. Individual orders for 2018 are being taken now!