We asked our Kennedy Space Center guide the best place to view the next rocket launch (for free) and he recommended Port Canaveral. The port started out as a small fishing port, but burgeoned when the space center was built. Many of the materials that sent men to the moon and supported them in this effort came through the port. When this building frenzy was over, the facilities were turned into a cruise terminal. The Disney ships make their home here and are joined by some from other cruise lines.
Two ships were in port and the place looked busy. We saw the area from the causeway and decided that the views of the launch would not be any better than the one we had last week near the campground. But we were already here and the famous Cocoa Beach where so many of the first astronauts lived, was nearby. We stopped at the fishing pier and watched enthusiastic surfers dressed in full body wet suits looking for a wave. A few managed a ride for less than a minute. We're not on the north shore of Oahu.
But the Ron Jon Surf Shop that boasts of being the largest surfing retailer in the world is based in Cocoa Beach, so there must be some better surfing here than we saw today. The Ron Jon store began on the New Jersey shore in the late 1950's; Ron quickly realized he could go a lot farther selling beach paraphenalia in Florida. Today there are Ron Jon stores in beach places all over the world. The store here is open 24/7 in case you have a 3am surf board emergency. We wandered around as if we were in a museum, but ended up spending a few bucks on the best beach umbrella ever. It even came with a screw in the base so it can stay erect in the sand even in a stiff breeze. In a few days it should be warm enough to head to the beach and give the umbrella a try out.