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27 Jun  

5th Annual Fourth of July Parade

Summer is almost upon us which means soon it will be time for  Santa Monica’s 5th Annual Fourth of July Parade on Main Street, presented by the Ocean Park Association.

This year parade’s theme is “Fourth of July at the Beach” and the Grand Marshals are the Santa Monica Ocean Lifeguards, led by Captain Angus Alexander, a 31 year veteran of our local lifeguards. Captain Alexander has a United States Coast Guard Masters License and skippered the “Baywatch” Lifeguard Rescue Boats for years. In addition, he served on the Swiftwater River Rescue Team and Under Water Rescue and Recovery Unit as well as the Lifeguard open water competition teams. After dedicating three decades to saving lives on the beach in Santa Monica he is now assigned as the Operations Captain at Santa Monica Lifeguard Headquarters, next to the Santa Monica Pier. Captain Alexander is a founding member of Heal the Bay, the Governing Board of the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission and the Bay Watershed Council and serves on numerous committees to safeguard the ocean and beach environment.

The Ocean Park Association is pleased to be honoring the women and men who keep our local ocean waters safe and secure.

The parade starts at 9:30 am on Monday, July 4th in front of the Civic Center and proceeds down Main Street to the Venice border. Please mark your calendars and plan to join in as a marcher or spectator for this festive celebration of our nation’s independence.

Sponsors underwriting the costs of staging the parade thus far include RAND, Brian Maser of Abbot Kinney Real Estate, Santa Monica Place, The Santa Monica Convention and Visitors Bureau, Pacific Park, the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, Santa Monica College, and County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky. The parade still needs help with expenses: please contact if  interested in sponsorship in return for inclusion on all parade promotional materials.

Volunteers are also vital to the success of the parade. If you can lend a hand, please send an email to And of course, no parade can succeed without marchers: applications, guidelines and waivers for parade participants will be available starting June 1st at

General parade inquiries should be directed to

24 Jun  

July 4th In & Around Santa Monica

4th of July is right around the corner, time to plan your celebration! Whether your looking for fireworks, good food or live entertainment, we’ve got you covered. Here are a list of 4th of July events in and around Santa Monica.

(Please note: Due to critical budget shortages in LA County this year, there will be no firework display at Marina del Rey on July 4th. For more information, click here)

Santa Monica College – Celebrate America
1900 Pico Blvd, Corsair Field
Saturday, June 25th, 2011
Gates open 5pm, Entertainment 7pm, Fireworks 9pm
Entertainment, special exhibits and star-spangled firework salute
Admission: Free

Pacific Palisades
15777 Bowdoin Street
Monday, July 4, 2011
Gates open 6pm, Entertainment 6:30 pm, Fireworks 9pm. Admission: $2 per person.

Hollywood Bowl
2301 North Highland Ave.
July 2nd, 3rd & 4th, 2011 7:30pm
Fireworks Spectacular with special guests Daryl Hall and John Oates. Tickets available online.

Culver City
Culver City High School, 4401 Elenda Street
Monday, July 4th, 2011
Gates open 5pm, Entertainment 6:30pm, Fireworks at 9pm. Suggested donation of $2 per person (children under 5 are free).

El Segundo
401 E. Sheldon Street
Monday, July 4th, 2011
Entertainment 10am, Fireworks 9pm. Stevenson Field seating is $3 in advance, $5 at gate.

Huntington Beach
Huntington Beach Pier, Main St. & Pacific Coast Hwy
Monday, July 4th, 2011
Fireworks Extravaganza 9:00pm to 9:30pm. Pier tickets: $10/ea.

Redondo Beach
Seaside Lagoon, 200 Portofino Way
Monday, July 4th, 2011
Gates open 2pm, Kids 4th Annual Freedom Parade 7pm, Fireworks at 9pm followed by jam session featuring John Brown Band and Couchois Brothers Band. Tickets available online.

For a full list of 2011 fireworks shows in the Los Angeles County area, visit For additional Santa Monica summer events and entertainment, visit

23 Jun  

Santa Monica Summer Weekend of Fun!

Summer is in full effect this weekend in Santa Monica! Check out some of the exciting events worth checking out.

Brand X Santa Monica Drive-In at the Pier – Friday, June 24, 2011
Catch the final showing of the Brand X Santa Monica Drive-In at the Pier Friday, June 24th featuring “Surf’s Up”. All screenings take place on the Pier Parking Deck at 8:30 p.m. with booths, giveaways and fun starting at 7:30 p.m. We welcome beach chairs and blankets. Chairs will also be available for rent.  No alcohol is permitted.

Annenberg Community Beach House Summer Opening Day – Saturday, June 25, 2011
Annenberg Community Beach House presents SUMMER’S HERE! At 10am, the Aqualillies kick off the day with a performance at the Pool. From 10 am – 2 pm, create chalk art in the courtyard, go on a Beach House treasure hunt, make and personalize a hula hoop or assemble large-scale and small hand puppets for Santa Monica Rep’s August production of The Tempest. For guests 16 and up, check out the Sand & Sea Fitness Room.  The Marion Davies Guest House and Gallery will be open 10 am – 4 pm, and the Pool will be open 10am-6pm.

Celebrate America Fireworks Show – Saturday, June 25, 2011
SMC’s Independence Day Celebration—the biggest, most sensational patriotic community event on the Westside! Bring your family and friends to SMC for a star-spangled salute to our nation’s independence. Come early, picnic on the lawn, enjoy continuous entertainment and special exhibits (with plenty of refreshments available for purchase), and cap off the evening with a spectacular fireworks salute to America. Starts at 5pm.

Fisherman Appreciation Day – Saturday, June 25, 2011
You are invited to join local fisherman, families and communities to learn more about local water and fishing practices on Saturday, June 25 from 11AM to 2PM. This is a FREE event including interactive displays and games, face painting, raffles and more!  Plus, get a chance to talk one-on-one with fishing experts. All activity takes place at the west end of the Pier (near Mariasol Restaurant).

11th Annual Summer Soulstice – Sunday, June 26, 2011
Party like it’s 2011! Main Street’s 11th Annual Summer Soulstice Sunday, June 26th 11am-7pm. Enjoy live bands all day. Sidewalk sale Saturday and Sunday, June 25th and 26th. Produced by the Main Street Business Improvement Association.

For more events and information, visit the Santa Monica Events Calendar at

14 Jun  

Scorpacciata At Drago Santa Monica

Celestino Drago

Celestino Drago

In Italy, Scorpacciata is defined as consuming large amounts of local ingredients while in season. Drago is pleased to be teaming up with Inner Gardens for One Night Only special event, hosting a unique dinner menu using only the finest local meats and produce. Renowned guest Chef Jeremy Strubel and Inner Gardens Founder Brandon D’Imperio, join Drago on Monday, June 27th, 2011 in showcasing the rich flavors of Italy while supporting local farming.

For this exceptional event, cocktail pairings will be designed using the same local ingredients as the menu, complimenting each other in only the finest and freshest fashion. Seating will be offered from 6pm – 10pm. Space is limited. For reservations, please call 310-828-1585.

Scorpacciata Menu
Tuna Crudo
Lemon misto oil, pickled
sultanas, toasted pine nuts, caramelized shallots

Beet Caramelle
beets and greens, smoked raw milk ricotta, toasted hazelnuts and aged

Pan Seared Branzino
Young fennel puree, crispy baby artichokes,
preserved orange and taggiasca olive gremolata

Chai Spiced Duck
breast and red wine braised leg, baby parsnips, apricot mustarda, vin

Cherry Dolce
Rainier and Bing cherries, almonds, olive oil mousse,
black pepper ice cream

Five courses – $65
Cocktail pairings – $25

Chef Owner: Celestino Drago
Executive Chef: Evan Gotanda
Ticket Info: $65

08 Jun  

Selena Gomez Live at Santa Monica Place!

Join actor and singing sensation Selena Gomez as she launches a ten-city mall tour on Friday, June 10th at Santa Monica Place. Themed to her new film Monte Carlo, which opens in theaters everywhere July 1, Selena will meet with her legions of fans at Q&A sessions, and only at the Santa Monica Place appearance, perform three specially-selected songs including the smash hit “Who Says” from the film and her upcoming album When The Sun Goes Down.

In addition, fans get to experience various activities throughout the day including royal makeovers, special photo stations and Selena’s Q&A with fans all in celebration of the launch of her new movie, Monte Carlo.

Festivities begin at 2 pm with a live musical performance at 4 pm. This is a free event.

Please note: Unfortunately, Santa Monica Place will not be able to allow guests to camp onsite overnight. Please do not bring in chairs, coolers, blankets, etc. to camp out, this will not be permitted at any time.  There will be no line at any time for this performance. The entire property is handicap accessible, there will be no reserved seating for the handicap.

For more information, visit

Santa Monica Place
395 Santa Monica Place
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 260-8333

06 Jun  

Santa Monica Pier Paddleboard Race & Ocean Festival

The world famous Santa Monica Pier and the Honolua Surf Co. will kick off the summer of 2011 with the Santa Monica Pier Paddleboard Race and Ocean Festival, featuring paddleboard races, dory competitions, outrigger canoes, live music and a surfing, lifeguard and paddleboard “museum for the day.”

The all day event takes place Saturday, June 11, 2011 and is a benefit for Santa Monica-based Heal the Bay and its public marine education facility, the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. Heal the Bay will receive a portion of net proceeds from the event.

The waterman “museum for the day” on the pier deck will feature antique surfboards, paddleboards, lifeguard equipment, including a fully restored Pete Peterson-crafted dory, as well as exhibits about the history of skateboarding and the historic pier. Paddleboard racing was a popular Santa Monica sport in the 1940s with two paddleboard clubs headquartered on the pier.

All races start and finish on the sand immediately south of the pier. The standup paddle and traditional or prone paddleboard races feature a 5.5 mile long course and 2 mile “fun paddle,” both of which take paddlers around the historic Santa Monica Pier.

For more information about the event, please visit

01 Jun  

2011 Official Santa Monica Visitors Guide Now Available!

2011 Santa Monica Visitor Guide

Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau (SMCVB) has unveiled the 2011 Official Santa Monica Visitors Guide – a comprehensive almanac of the quintessential California beach city’s award-winning restaurants, hotels, shops and activities to suit virtually any interest.

The Santa Monica Visitors’ Guide, which is published by SMCVB’s longtime partner and publisher Striker Media, serves as an ideal resource for travelers planning itineraries, with suggestions for those visiting for the day or staying for the summer. Anyone can request a free copy by calling (800) 544-5319 or visiting The guide is also viewable in page-turner format at

Recently named one of the “Top 10 Beach Cities in the World” by National Geographic, Santa Monica continues to be a mecca for beach lovers from around the globe.  The city’s hotels restaurants and attractions were recognized by top publications such as Travel + Leisure, Condé Nast Traveler, GQ and Zagat, all within the last year.

“We’re blessed with year-round spectacular weather that creates a perfect backdrop for the outdoor beach lifestyle in Santa Monica and, as such, many of the most popular activities and attractions are centered around the beach,” says Misti Kerns, president and CEO at the Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau.

In the spirit of the city’s vibrant outdoor life and beach culture, here are the top 10 activities travelers and local visitors can enjoy along the Santa Monica coastline:

  1. Get Moving – Santa Monica thrives on a healthy, active lifestyle.  Hop on a bike and ride the South Bay Bicycle Trail that runs for miles along the beach, the longest beach path of its kind. Bikes, rollerblades and other gear are available for rent at several spots along the beach.
  2. Family Fun – Kids rule the Annenberg Beach House! The recently restored landmark created a interactive and fun environment for kids by offering a public pool that features a splash pad and water playground and a cafe where kids and parents can relax with their feet in the sand.
  3. Ride the Waves – With the Pacific Ocean as a backyard, it’s no surprise that Santa Monica knows surfing! And, with the number of great surfing instructors and surf camps, who call the city their home, by the end of your visit, so will you.
  4. Volleyball – Santa Monica is the birthplace of beach volleyball and the city continues to be a go-to destination for those seeking the sand and the net.  Hundreds of courts pepper the beaches and are always available to the public first come, first served and free of charge.
  5. Pampering with a Personal Beach Butler – For a luxurious beach experience without the fuss of carrying your gear and food, Perry’s Café’s Beach Butler service will set up beach chairs, table and umbrella at a designated time and location, deliver sunning products, chilled beverages and food. The best part: they handle the clean up, so you don’t have to!
  6. Listen to Live Music Under the Stars – The famous Santa Monica Pier hosts the Twilight Dance Series every summer, a free open-air concert series featuring top performers every Thursday night, starting late June to the Labor Day weekend. The concerts draw families, couples and friends, who gather both on the pier and on the beach below to enjoy the live music.
  7. Yoga – Following the belief that everything is better at the beach, take your mat to the sand and flow through your asanas there. In addition to a number of private Santa Monica studios that trade four walls for an ocean breeze, Shutters On The Beach, a popular beachfront hotel, offers beach yoga classes every Thursday morning at no cost to its guests.
  8. Explore the Ocean Culture – The Heal The Bay Santa Monica Pier Aquarium offers an enlightening peek into the Santa Monica’s ocean world. The family-friendly facility is home to more than 100 species of marine animals and plants – all found in the Santa Monica Bay.
  9. Learn to Fly – Also located on the Santa Monica Pier, the Trapeze School New York provides acrobatic classes for those who are fearless or are facing fears, including flying trapeze, swinging trapeze and trampoline for various levels.  Imagine the ocean view from up there!
  10. Coastal Coasters – The West Coast’s only amusement park located on a pier, Pacific Park provides top-notch year-round entertainment for kids of any age.  From arcade games to fast flying roller coasters, with a side of sweet treats, everyone will find something to love. The park is also home to the worlds only solar powered Ferris wheel that offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean from more than 130 feet above the pier.

For more information, click here.


The opinions of this blog are that of the contributors and do not necessarily depict the position of Santa Monica Convention &
Visitors Bureau. Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau reserves the right to edit or refuse any submitted information.

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