Annual Celebration A Perfect Mix Of Party Revelers And Families
Getting in the holiday spirit can be difficult at Southern California’s beaches. The weather is warm and instead of going to malls and shopping people do what they do at all times of the year, and that is go surfing, running, rollerblading and then partying at night.
But there’s one event that brings in the holiday spirit and yes, it involves holiday spirits. It’s the Manhattan Beach Holiday Fireworks (Sunday, Dec. 9 in 2012), a spectacular show of fireworks to holiday music that brings about 10,000 people to the Pier.
There are people on the beach, in beach chairs and blankets sitting on the street and on the Strand. Just about every house on the Strand has a party, be it a small gathering or a big bash.
Restaurants are full and the bars are packed. It’s up there with Hometown Fair as the top social/party event of the year. It is to Manhattan Beach what the boat parade is to Newport Beach.
What I like to do is gather a few friends at PubClub.com’s World Headquarters in North Manhattan Beach, have a few drinks and take a casual mile-plus walk to the Pier. Along the way, we stop and listen to live music at some people’s private house parties, sometimes get invited to private house parties, and get to the Pier as the band is playing Christmas music.
A friend has a fairly substantial house party right by the Pier, and we pop into there, but watch the show from the Strand. We try and get into Shellback Tavern; – sometimes I’ll see Shellback owner Bob Beverly and he’ll fast-track us in – or failing that go around the corner ot Ercoles. Of course, the elegant Strand House is happening and some savvy (and well-heeled) people make early dinner reservations which gives them a prime seat for the show.
And in 2012, there are not one but two fireworks shows. The first is at 7 and the second at 8;30 to celebrate the city’s 100th birthday.
Frankly, the whole event is a huge celebration.
For a complete review, schedule and photos, click here.