For the last 3 weeks we have been living the life of a Venice and Santa Monica Beach resident and let me tell you, these people are living the good life. This is how we get down, beachstyle:
First we rented bikes for the day at Venice Bike and Skate on Washington. The staff there are really nice and the rentals are cheaper than on the pier or boardwalk. With a bike lock and a basket, we were equipped to stay out all day. Then we biked to the Santa Monica Farmers Market on Main Street. Gourmet food, a live band, pony rides and local farmers make this market a Sunday must-do with Venice and Santa Monica residents. We parked our bikes at the bike valet and spread a blanket on the grass to listen to the music while we ate crepes, pancakes, gourmet chicken sausage, bagels and organic strawberries from Oxnard. And because it’s California and not Georgia, there were compost and recycling bins everywhere.
The California Heritage Museum is right next to the farmer’s market and we saw a very cool exhibit, Skateboard: Evolution and Art in California. The docent led exhibit traces the history of skateboarding from the very first skateboard up until present day, including the artwork that is such a big part of skateboard culture.
Leaving the museum, we hopped back on the bikes and continued riding along the coast for several miles. In total we rode about 18 miles that day. That’s a long way on a beach cruiser!
After resting up a bit, we rode back to Venice Boardwalk for a Hoop Jam. Awhile ago I started hooping, but had only hooped by myself in my living room. I took a class at the Hoopnotica studio while we were staying in LA and learned about the Hoop Jam happening right down the beach from us. Unlike Atlanta, LA has a hooping community and once a month hoopers congregate at a beach or park to hoop together. Extra hoops are available for anyone passing by to give hooping a try. I had my own hoop, a Hoopnotica Travel Hoop, and I bought Girly a kid’s hoop at the farmer’s market. My boys opted to watch instead of hoop, but there were male hoopers present. Someone was DJing, someone else was playing the drums and it was all very hippie and groovy. I loved it!
Hungry after all that hooping (it’s really quite a workout), we returned our bikes and ate dinner next door at C & O Trattoria. A Venice neighborhood favorite, C & O has delicious Northern Italian food and huge portions; my lobster linguine was just as good for lunch the next day as it was for dinner that night.
It was a perfect Sunday by the beach. And the next week, we did it again. Yeah, we could definitely get used to this!