Redondo Beach

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Decem-brrrr in the South Bay

Last night a meteorologist (or two) on my Twitter feed mentioned that today west facing beaches would have some high surf advisories. I immediately noted on my calendar that I would need to head over to said beaches to see what kind of photos I could get. I have to admit, I really did not expect temperatures to hit the low 80’s; I guess that is why they call it Decem-brrrr.

The main obstacle I was to encounter is that high tide was going to happen around 1:00 AM and, truth be told, I have never photographed surf in the middle of the night. I decided to see how lucky I was by heading out a little before noon, with my first stop being the breakwater in Redondo Beach. Sometimes when we get big surf, the waves crashing on the rocks can be pretty dramatic. It may have been dramatic at 1:00 AM, but it was not that impressive when I arrived. There were several surfers to photograph and I could see the swells were getting bigger so I moved up the coast a mile to the Hermosa Beach Pier to see what I might find there. The surf was no bigger and there was a lone surfer that looked like he was a beginner, so I left and headed off to Manhattan Beach.

The Manhattan Beach Pier is photogenic no matter what the weather is like and there were several surfers and boogie boarders enjoying the active surf. All in all, it was a great winter day in the South Bay; it is feeling a lot like Christmas. Continue reading

Redondo Beach Pier & International Boardwalk

As the summer tourist season is approaching, I thought I might spend a little time wandering around the South Bay to photograph popular tourist destinations for those that might be coming to visit the Torrance and Redondo Beach area. Since the Redondo Beach Pier has been in the news lately due to it being the 25th anniversary of when the Redondo Beach Pier had a major fire that destroyed half of the Redondo Pier horseshoe, I decided I would start off with a walk around the Redondo Beach Pier and the International Boardwalk.

The Redondo Beach Pier is a really fun place to bring the family; in fact, even though I have lived here since the mid-1960’s it was a place that I took my kids when they were still in strollers and continued to bring them as they got older and could appreciate things like the Tilt-A-Whirl at the Redondo Fun Factory. Besides the games and rides at the Fun Factory there are a couple very nice restaurants, with my favorite being Tony’s on the Pier; also known as Old Tony’s because there was a Tony’s Fish Market Restaurant which, as I recall, was one of the restaurants that was destroyed in the fire of 1988. They have very good food at a fair price, but are probably best known for their Mai Tais. They are very tasty, even if you do not drink.

If you are planning a visit to the Redondo Beach area, I highly recommend you make a stop at the Redondo Pier and plan on making a day of it. The arcade games, various food stands as well as the great seafood offerings make it fun for the entire family. Even the locals come to spend time there, so that should tell you something. Continue reading

Carl Palmer Plays Saint Rocke

A couple weeks ago the good people at Saint Rocke, a concert venue in Hermosa Beach, CA gave me a couple passes for an upcoming show. When I heard Carl Palmer would be performing there, I knew what concert I wanted to see. I have been to many concerts since the late 1960’s, and the best show I have ever seen was Emerson, Lake & Palmer at the Hollywood Bowl in 1971; they were that good. So last night we decided to go to Hudson House in Redondo Beach for dinner, and then headed down the street to Saint Rocke for some rock and roll.

The concert started with a set by Fertitta and McClintock, a duet of acoustic balladeers. They were entertaining, but we were there for Carl Palmer and when he got on stage we were immediately sent back to the 1970’s with electric guitars and great drum solos. That is something we don’t really see much of anymore, a good drum solo, but Carl Palmer reminded us of the good ol’ days. It was a great time. I have to admit, when I saw the two guys accompanying Palmer I had to wonder if they had any idea who he was prior to joining his band; they were pretty young. Continue reading

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