By Suzie Price, Third District Councilwoman
I can’t overstate how excited I am for this summer. With COVID-19 restrictions lifted, it has been nice to see communities coming back to life: Businesses, restaurants, and bars open, people returning to work, parks, beaches, and playgrounds full of kids. Friends, family, and neighbors are back spending time together, reconnecting and rebuilding a sense of friendship and community.
Our City staff has worked hard to get residents vaccinated. To date, over 265,000 Long Beach residents have been vaccinated (70.1% of our 18 year and older residents and 56.9% of our total population.) These numbers provide reason for optimism as we move through the pandemic.
For me, there is no better representation of summer than the annual summer concerts in the park. Join me for our first concert on August 1st at 5:00 PM at Marine Stadium Park. As always, it will be a great community evening enjoying music, food, and fun. I hope to see you there.
For fans of the Muni Band I want to mention my efforts to recognize the late Muni Band Conductor, Larry Curtis. Larry was the band’s summer concert conductor for 27 years, until his death in June 2020. The band is an important part of our City’s history and also an integral part of our summers. Because of Larry’s long-lasting impacts on our City, and with significant support from residents, I have proposed that his name be added to Marine Stadium Park, a place where tens of thousands of residents enjoy summer concerts. A proposal to name a section of the park “Conductor Larry Curtis Concert Park” will be presented to the Parks Commission for approval.
Improvements to our City infrastructure continue: sidewalk and road repairs as well as new speed humps added to Ximeno in order to reduce traffic speeds and improve safety. Those who know me know how flashing pedestrian beacons, crosswalks, or new stop signs bring a smile to my face as I work to prioritize safety.
I’ve also created a youth learn-to-row program for underserved Long Beach high school students, teaching them competitive rowing. It’s a sport that is difficult and expensive thereby limiting participation. Creating this program is meant to expose students to a new sport with new experiences and skills, while building confidence and friendships. It may also provide opportunities for future athletics-based scholarships.
Also, head down to the beach and check out the newly renovated beach concession stands. We have new food vendors at Mothers Beach, Bayshore, Granada, and Junipero. Stop by and check out the fare. And kids can enjoy the new playground at Junipero and water play area at Granada.
Lastly, an update on the Colorado Lagoon’s open channel project. The channel will connect the lagoon with Marine Stadium and create long-term water quality improvements for the lagoon. If you haven’t heard about this project, I encourage you to contact my office and we’ll fill you in on the details. Recent improvements to the Colorado Lagoon water quality will be sustained by this open channel. The project will also create new native wetlands habitat in the channel that will run through Marina Vista Park. As City staff work through the design and bids for the project, I will be sure to keep residents updated.
These are a few of the important projects my office is working on to make our community its best. Feel free to reach out to my office at email@example.com or by phone at (562)570- 6300. And please sign up for my monthly email newsletter to stay informed on everything going on at the City Council and in the community.