Beer Garden A Top Weekend Destination For South Bay Singles
WHAT: Old Hometown Fair, a traditional event featuring arts and crafts booths, food vendors, kiddie rides, a band and – most importantly for most people who go to the fair – a beer garden. The event beings on Saturday morning with the annual 10K run.
WHEN: First Saturday and Sunday in October (Oct, 7-8 in 2023). 10 a.m.-6 p.m. The last beer garden ticket sales are at 5 p.m.
WHERE: Live Oak Park and along Valley-Ardmore from the post office (15th Street to approximately 25th Street).
THE SCENE: Lively, especially in the beer garden. This is a party scene in which a few hundred locals gather, mingle and drink until officials declare the beer garden closed. There’s a band in the distance but the conversation drowns out the music. Nearly every single person in the South Bay goes to the beer garden and quite a few who once lived in the South Bay come back into town for Hometown Fair.
THE PEOPLE: Mostly South Bay locals, past and present. Dress is casual – shorts, t-shirt and sandals are fine.
THE BEER GARDEN: For many, Old Hometown Fair means only one thing: the beer garden. Saturday is the big day and it’s packed. There are a half-dozen beers. Beers are bought with tickets purchased at a booth in the beer garden. If you are not in the beer garden by 2 p.m., there’s often a line to get inside. And nobody ever leaves the beer garden so you are not likely to get into it after 2. Sunday, its long-time MB party veterans day, and they are joined by the younger crowd, whom are just recovering from the previous day at at around 3.
BANDS: There are bands at Hometown Fair. One is adjacent – but not in – the beer garden. In other words, you can’t have a beer in your hand and be by the band. You can kind of hear it from the beer garden entrance but live music is really a non-factor here. That would be a nice “value added” but the real value of the beer garden is the conversations with the people in the beer garden.
PARKING: Little to none in Manhattan Beach. There is a public lot at the south entrance to the fair, small lots scattered around downtown and some residential parking (be sure and check signs for parking restrictions). You don’t want to drive anyway; hey, you’re in a beer garden! A good alternative transportation is the Beach Cities Transit (white bus), which PubClub.com dubs “the dollar taxi” because it’s only a buck. Get off a the Manhattan Beach library at 14th and Highland. And when you stumble out of Shellback’s or Ercoles later, pick it up at 8th and Manhattan Ave.
THE WEATHER: Most likely sunny but have a light sweatshirt tied around your waist.