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Heart and Soul:  The Story Behind Downunder

Hi, I'm Kim Hawkins (formerly Beaumont), owner of Downunder…

. . . a business dedicated to fun on the water for people of all ages, abilities and walks of life!

Raised in New Zealand, I LOVE the water and having a good time.  When my kids were young teens and I was newly divorced, I got the opportunity to take over a small boutique with a few kayaks in Rowayton, Below Deck.  It's grown to two stores, one year round in neighboring Westport.  We laugh that these surf shops are successful in an area with no surf!  Yet they are, and I think the secret is the passion – the love for being outdoors, the 'surfer' mindset and lifestyle.  The experience you get when you visit Downunder is much of that of a surf shop – laid back, easy going, no worries, let's have some fun.  And of course you can buy everything you'd expect in a surf shop – we have lots of surfers in our community. 

My kids have all been involved in the business (and continue to float in when they need a job or we need help).  My husband now works alongside me on weekends (he's an awesome instructor).  For me it's all about family, and having fun – and in true 'kiwi' fashion, everyone is considered family!  It's such a joy to share the water with all walks of life, to make it easy, safe and fun.  That's my passion – and putting a smile on your face 🙂

Both of Downunder's locations are on flat-water rivers that lead out to the protected Long Island Sound – gorgeous tidal waterways, estuaries, islands – this area is truly magical!  Be as daring as you want – learn tricks, try yoga, take a fitness class, train to race!  Or simply relax and paddle leisurely, take a tour, meditate, have fun with your mates.

Come in and say 'g'day' – enjoy a warm Downunder welcome, and we'll have you feeling like you’re on vacation and totally spoiled right away.  Relax into it and go with the flow!

The Downunder Mission Is To Have a Good Time!

It's all about having fun and feeling good about yourself – getting out on the water does that!  We provide the tools, make sure you're safe and prepared so your experience is easy and successful, leaving you with a huge grin!  Kids from 3yrs to 80+ are totally capable and welcome.  Downunder promises a healthy and positive experience that will enrich, enliven, refresh, and rejuvenate. An experience that will have you feeling like you're on vacation and make you want to come back for more.

Downunder is committed to the environment and its caretakers and to a way of life that reflects our passions and beliefs, our concerns and convictions. We want to make the water accessible for everyone, particularly those with disabilities or special needs. We are here to make a difference.

Give It a Go! We look forward to seeing you this season, in both Rowayton and Westport. If you have any questions, give us a call or shoot an email. Kim

Join The Downunder Team!

We currently have the following positions available, email your resume to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you are interested.

  • Full-Time Store Manager, Westport
  • Seasonal Store Manager, Rowayton (Mother's Day through Labor Day)
  • Seasonal Dock Manager, Westport (ideally March through October)
  • Seasonal Sales Assistants both locations
  • Seasonal Dock Hand
  • Seasonal Guides/Camp Counselors/SUP & Kayaking Instructors

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