"The Emperor of Dog Town" Jeff Ho-, along with Skip Engblom & Craig Stecyk opened the Santa Monica surf/skate shop "Jeff Ho Surfboards and Zephyr Productions" in 1971. The Z-Boys represented the shop in surf competitions, with the first member being fourteen-year-old Nathan Pratt.
In 1974, Allen Sarlo, Jay Adams, Tony Alva, Chris Cahill and Stacy Peralta, joined the surf team. The place that the team spent most of their time surfing was at Pacific Ocean Park, a once thriving amusement park atop a pier. Now abandoned and run down and nicknamed by the locals as "Dogtown". With large tilted, wood pilings jutting from the water, and not enough room for all of the surfers, Pacific Ocean Park Pier was an incredibly dangerous place to surf. Despite these dangers, the Z-Boys surfed it anyway. They would surf in the mornings, when the waves were the highest. When the pier waves died down after the early-morning hours, they would hang out at the Zephyr shop, running errands, doing homework, skating and flirting with passing girls. At that time, the Z-Boys saw skating as a hobby, something to do after surfing, but it quickly grew from a hobby into a new way to express themselves.