The Long Beach Love Festival is back for its second consecutive year of providing top notch fun in the sun for all residents and visitors alike. On July 18th and 19th, the dog, artist, kid, musician, yogi and athlete-friendly event will bring to Granada Beach a little something for everyone, whether you're interested in stand-up paddle boarding or simply spending an afternoon by the shore, beer in hand.
Fred Khammar, a Long Beach resident of 27 years and owner of Alfredo's Beach Club, the locally-focused company that organizes Moonlight Movies on the Beach, Pirate Invasion at the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier and the annual Tiki Festival, among many other events, could not be more excited to see this event grow.
Last year, Love Long Beach attracted nearly 10,000 attendees over its two-day period, this year, Khammar expects to see at least 15,000. But the beauty of the festival is not necessarily in the numbers, but in getting the Long Beach community outdoors and excited to be participating.
"We have a dog area, we have a kid zone, there's really something for everyone," he said. "And that was the whole object of this thing, was to sprinkle a little bit of Long Beach out here on the beach, where everyone could come and find something that they enjoy doing."
He said he's found that many people who had never participated in yoga before took part in yoga on the beach, and that they "had never really grooved to DJs dancing on the beach or doing things that really weren't happening anywhere else."
This year, aside from an absence of the running and swimming events, Khammar said everything has stayed the same or gotten better. A corn hole tournament, a stand-up paddle event, the artist village, a yoga and meditation area and two different stages, including a live band stage and a stage for DJs, will make for a lively, hot day.
Vendors and artists from all over Long Beach will present their wares and show off what creative craftsmen and dreamers reside within the city. Meanwhile, all-day festival goers need not fear—they will not go hungry. A natural and novelty food court, as well as a beer garden, will ensure all attendees are fed well beyond expectation.
Khammar has big plans for the festival and referenced Santa Monica's 24-hour "Glow" event, in which attendees are welcome to stay at the beach all night long. He said he'd like it to one day cover all of Long Beach, and include art installations and musical events all day and all night.
"I hope that this Love Long Beach festival turns into something that annually grows and grows and grows," he said. "I just love the fact that I can do this work and see so many people come and enjoy it."
He said the event's financial success isn't the only determining factor in replicating it the next year. "[...] because something didn't make money this year I don't throw it off the table, I just think, 'Well, that's an investment toward next year,'" he said.
The Love Long Beach Festival is free and open to the public. For the musical lineup and the most updated information, be sure to visit the Facebook event page here.