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First Friday Long Beach

First Friday Long Beach

Located in Bixby Knolls, on the famous Atlantic Corridor, between Bixby and San Antonio road, Long Beach First Friday is without a doubt, Bixby Knolls’ most famous event. On the first Friday of every month, local stores, restaurants and businesses open their doors and offer some entertainment, whether it’s live bands, DJs, face paintings, performances, free foods or drinks. You can stroll along Atlantic or hop on a British bus, which will pick you up and drop you off along the way. The event is a lot of fun for families and younger ones while the adult crowd can use it as an opportunity to go out for food, drinks and live music. First Fridays always have a theme, from Day of the Dead to Folk or Art night but, to be frank, it is sometimes hard to notice it, except for some special presentation at the Expo hall. Of course, it’s during summer that First Friday is the more lively, both the crowd and entertainment slowing down from October to April. While there is a lot going on at First Friday, a few highlights include: Having diner or a drink at Nino’s: you can sit at that long communal table for food or just have a drink at the bar they only open for special occasions – the best part about the bar is that there usually is a DJ or live band and that you can bring your kids with you! Plus the staff is very friendly. The Expo Hall features art exhibits, performances, DJs, vendors and a bar. It’s always a good idea to get in, even though the level of activity varies from one month to another. The Historical society usually has a fun gypsy jazz band playing in the front and some exhibit about Long Beach – I personally enjoys all those old pictures of Long Beach. Getting free books and other freebies at Castle of Books – kids love that! There’s also a goofy Bixby Knolls ranger – in a Lone Rangers-style costume – walking around, which might appeal to your younger boys. My only regret is that they don’t bring food trucks every month – it is a pretty rare occurrence, which I find pretty surprising as food trucks are very popular at these kinds of events. Please follow and like...

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Bixby Knolls Filming and TV Locations

Bixby Knolls Filming and TV Locations

Bixby Knolls has been a prime filming location for quite a few movies and TV shows, which isn’t surprising: first there are a wide variety of historic houses, especially in the California Heights area, from Spanish to Tudor styles. With its old lampposts, the neighborhood can easily look like it was in the early to mid-20th century. There are also some big houses on the other side of Atlantic, near the Country club, which can be used to represent a rich neighborhood – just like Beverly Hills, Pasadena or Illinois’ Lake Forest. Finally it is a driving distance from Hollywood while being far enough to preserve some kind of secrecy. Here are some of the most popular movies and TV shows shot in Bixby Knolls: Live by Night, directed by and starring Ben Affleck was shot in Bixby Knolls in January 2016, by the Bixby Knolls plaza. Set in the Prohibition era, it also features Zoe Saldana, Sienna Miller, Scott Eastwood, Elle Fanning, Brendan Gleeson. Another recent film shoot was the excellent Inherent Vice, a film by the acclaimed Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood, The Master) starring Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon. Donny Darko’s house is located on Virginia Country Club Drive and you can watch Jake Gyllenhaal riding his bike in the neighborhood during the opening, while a song by Echo & the Bunnymen is accompanying him. Other noticeable films shot on location include Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and American Pie and you can find an interesting trend here, as the area seems to be serving as a shooting location for popular teenage movies. When it comes to TV, the infamous Dexter is without a doubt the most famous “passenger”. He can be seen swimming at the Petroleum club pool or dropping off his step kids on a local parking lot (there’s even a picture of him at the Mirage Café on Bixby/Atlantic). As a side note, I used to literally be Dexter’s neighbor before I moved here, when he used to live with his wife on First Street and somebody even asked me once if I was Dexter – but that’s another story … With location scouts often driving down the neighborhood, I’m sure there will be more movies and TV shows coming our way, and we’ll make sure to update this page as it goes. Please follow and like...

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