This was a big deal at HB. Preparations started weeks before and people 'reserved' their spots along the way. Too bad that I was in San Diego during 4th July. But it was a blast there too.
Independence Day parade west of the Mississippi River features more than 300 entries including bands, floats, film and television celebrities, local dignitaries, equestrians and community groups. The parade heads south to Main Street, proceeds up Main Street through the downtown, ending at Yorktown and Main.
They describe themselves as shopping, dining and entertainment center which isn't so special, but it's built in the style of a Bavarian village with murals depicting landscapes of some European countries.
Is it August & there are huge bleachers & tens of thousands of people? Then you're in my hometown of HB during our biggest surf contest of the year. Elite pro surfers from around the globe are here to prove theemselves. It is really amazing.
Many Saturdays & Sundays you will see small tents & flags, & hear an airhorn. Lucky you! A local surf contest, boys & girls ages 10-17. They paddle fiercley. effortlessly stand up. Cut across the face of the wave, jerk their bodies. Vigourous but graceful.
No surf contest? There are still 20 -100 guys near the pier every single day of the year. Watch them lay on those boards & wait. Hear them hoot and holler as someone finally sees the next set roll in. See them jockey for a position.
I also like the pier very much on stormy winter days. The smell of salftwater & sting & power & sound of the wind is intense. I was standing right at the edge of a barricaded section at the end of our pier yrs ago, when the next day it all fell in the sea-- right where I had been standing, a restaurant & all. It took years, but our city rebuildt. Vendors sell photos & paintings of the day the pier fell.
Check out the happy families going for walks. Check out the minor, but distinctive, fishing culture (not for eating). See pelicans & seagulls.
Hear the lifeguard from his tower scold someone who trying to ride a bike on the pier.
Wake up early, get to the pier by 6:00am, watch the "dawn patrol" surfers as the sun comes up. It's so peaceful. The light is golden. They stand right on PCH, shimmy out of their street clothes and into a wetsuit, bare-naked for a few moments, with only a well placed towel. Then they get in a whole few hours before going to work. These aren't just kids. They're dads, business owners...you'd be surprised.
Walk down to the boardwalk & hit the stucco snack building. Order nachos. Eat, & savoy the grit in your teeth, the sand that gets in everything around here. Nice gritty nachos, that's how we ate 'em every summer of my childhood.
Try to go when the OP Surfing champipnships are there. There are lots of young ladies laying around sun-bathing in their thongs and tons of young eligible pro-surfers running around looking for a betty. Did I mention that these guys have great tans and sun-bleached hair?
There's also lots of entertainment and live announcing for the competition. And it doesn't cost anything to watch.
Just sit on the Pier...soak up the sunshine...read a book and watch the seals play around the Pier....no de-stress theory and books required
There are always waves, maybe not always the best waves but there is something out there to have a paddle on.