Sunday, October 11, 2009

Long Beach Port Festival

Last weekend the Long Beach Port had an open house. There were going to be train rides, boat rides, seeing the giant cranes up close, heavy machinery and lots of things that little boys love.
So we went.
So did a lot of other people.

It was pretty crowded. We had to wait in a lot of lines. Thankfully, our buddies, Noah and Natalie were there, and that made the waiting so much easier.

Our trip into the port started with a bus ride on a Long Beach city bus. The kids thought that was great!

Once we got in, their attitudes changed a little. The train rides were all booked by the time we got there, only a half hour after the festival opened. The line for boat ride tickets was so long we weren't sure if we'd be able to do that either. So Jana and I tried to find something fun to redeem the day while Uncle Greg waited in line to score boat tickets for us all.

We found a giant forklift for them to climb on and check out. They weren't too impressed.
I liked this guy.
I also liked the mural they had on the front of one of the port buildings.

From the first explorers to modern times, this mural told the whole story.
The kids enjoyed looking at it too. Especially since we had finally scored them some of the free popcorn they were offering.

After a lunch of free pizza, which only Lilly and I ate, we headed over to see the rescue vehicles. That brought some smiles to their faces. They climbed aboard a police boat and this coast guard boat.

The best part of the day though, was when we climbed aboard a real boat for a tour of the harbor. (Thanks for waiting in line Greg!) We stood out front and got wet from the spray and the waves. They all loved being out there in the wind. We saw sea lions resting on a buoy, which was a thrill for William.

We also saw a fire boat spraying all its cannons for us. It was pretty exciting.

I think it was William's favorite part of the day.

So, if you go to the Port Festival next year, here is what I recommend: go early. It starts at 10. Line up to ride the bus at 9. Otherwise you will not get on that train or the boat.
It is definitely worth going to, at least once. just plan ahead for many, many more people than you expected! (Maybe next year the port will too.)

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