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Great events on the beach


Kristy Alpert
Published November 06, 2013

Courtesy Visit Huntington Beach

US Open of Surfing
Huntington Beach, California
Known as the definitive competition for serious surfers, the 55-year-old US Open of Surfing has recently grown from a surfing competition into a festival the whole group can enjoy. Running a total of eight days, the festival kicks off quietly at first with qualifying contests and chilled-out events like movie nights on the beach and autograph signings. As the surfing competition progresses, things pick up with live music, local art shows and contests.

“There’s nothing quite like it,” said Kelly Miller, president and CEO of Visit Huntington Beach. “One thing I’ve been blown away with is that the surf culture is certainly something that permeates everything about Huntington Beach. Some cities say they are a community that has a beach, but we are definitely a beach community, and there’s a big difference.”

The surfers are celebrities in Huntington Beach, and this festival brings them out in droves for groups looking to score a few autographs. From hanging out in the sand while watching the pros in action to exploring this beach community after a day spent taking a group surf lesson, there’s so much for the whole group to dive into at this free festival.

The 2014 US Open of Surfing will take place in late July and early August.

Maine Lobster Festival
Rockland, Maine
Located in the official “Lobster Capital of the World,” the Maine Lobster Festival in Rockland, Maine, is a great chance for groups to let loose with friends and family while cracking into some great local fun near the shore. The event features more than 20,000 pounds of lobster waiting to be dipped, dunked and devoured by adoring crustacean aficionados hanging out amongst a sea of events and entertainment.

“Not only do we have the world’s largest lobster cooker, but we also offer group discounts,” said Tim Carroll, president of the Rockland Festival Corporation for the Maine Lobster Festival. “We have many bus tours stop and take advantage of the group discounts and meal combinations.”

Celebrating its 66th year, the Lobster Festival will again feature a Lobster Crate Race, arts and crafts, a parade, cooking contests, local food vendors, live entertainment and more. Along with marina tours of the U.S. Coast Guard Station and the U.S. Navy ships, groups seeking seaside fun need look no further than the coronation of the annual Maine Sea Goddess after the judges make their final decision from this iconic beauty contest.

Next year’s Maine Lobster Festival will be held July 30-August 3.

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