Last weekend I took a trip to the beach, which surprisingly doesn’t happen as much as you think despite the fact that I live in California. Specifically, Steven and I reunited with our fellow blogger Olga to visit Manhattan Beach for the annual Hometown Fair. Although it was the beginning of October, it was a clear and temperate day: perfect for visiting a coastal part of Los Angeles. If you’ve never been to Manhattan Beach I would definitely recommend visiting as it is a much nicer beach than Venice or even Santa Monica with fewer tourists and more of a small town feel.
As for the Hometown Fair, it was basically a smaller version of the LA County Fair, with arts & crafts vendors, lots of food, live music by a Beatles tribute band and much more. There was also an “adopt a dog” zone by the Fire Station with some very adorable pups. There was also a “Free Speech area” where people could freely express their views. On the field next to the street, many inflatables were set up along with a petting zoo and a pony ride for the kids.
There was a large beer and wine garden in the back of Dorsey Field for those who wanted to enjoy libations.I channeled the Avengers and ate some very good shwarma for $8. Steven decided to try the signature “pepperbellies,” which turned out to be simply Fritos with toppings such as onions, sour cream, cheese and chili. It was quite delicious and only $4. We also splurged on an “The Works” funnel cake with ice cream, strawberries, bananas, powered sugar and hot fudge…boy, was it delicious. You can see it pictured on the left.
We discovered my favorite part of the fair on accident. After walking through the children’s area, we came across a mini-stage where volunteers from the Wildlife Learning Center in Sylmar brought out unique and familiar animals to educate the kids about wildlife. We saw everything from snakes to monitors to a parrot and a porcupine. The volunteers were extremely knowledgeable and answered questions about the creatures. Afterwards there was a small pirate sing-along and battle.
Overall, if you don’t want to drive all the way to Pomona to experience some of the best parts of the LA County Fair, the Manhattan Beach Hometown Fair is a great event to attend for similar experiences. It is free to attend and who can turn down a trip to the beach? A small warning, parking in the area is a bit tricky as many of the residential homes do not have sidewalks. You can check out more photos from this event on our Facebook page. If you haven’t already, be sure to follow @SurvivingLA on Twitter for all the latest Los Angeles events. Stay tuned for Steven’s post coming up on the ever popular Oktoberfest!