Santa Monica Pier’s second annual celebration of beach sports will double in size and feature new activities like an obstacle course from American Ninja Warrior and soccer games from the Los Angeles Galaxy.
The pier will host Pier 360 this Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. The free event will bring together more than 500 athletes competing for cash prizes in dory boat and paddleboard races, ocean swims and volleyball. Spectators can cheer on the competition on the sand or watch live coverage from a new 17-foot screen on the pier deck.
Pier 360 may be centered on sports, but the event will offer plenty of activities for people who aren’t athletes, said Pier executive director Negin Singh. The festival launched last year as an extension of the Pier Paddle, a paddleboard racing competition created in 2010.
“We wanted to turn everyone into a participant in some way,” she said. “Last year is when we changed the focus from just an athletic event into something more broad for folks who wanted a summer kickoff celebration.”
On the pier deck, attendees can go to a beer & spirits garden or a coffee lounge, listen to EDM, Latin and children’s music, bring their pets to a pool party and watch hula dancers perform to a live Polynesian band. There will also be free food samples, art and photo installations and a skate ramp.
Pride Month will be woven into the event for the first time, Singh said. The festival will make a donation to Athlete Allies, which works with large sports organizations to ensure LGBTQ+ equality in sports, and honor individual athletes.
“There are just so many new activities that we didn’t have last year,” she said. “Last year, we were setting the stage. This year feels like the coming out party.”
On the pier deck:
- Red Bull skate ramp
- Ninja Nation obstacle rig
- Beer & spirits garden by Kona Brewing Co., Our/Vodka and White Claw
- Lavazza coffee lounge
- Eats from Tate’s Bake Shop, Caulipower, Red Rock Deli and Clif
- Beverages from KeVita, Hubert’s Lemonade, Harmless Harvest, Vital Proteins and Boxed Water
- Pet pool party with Healthy Spot
- Live Polynesian band and hula dancing
- Music performances by Boogaloo Assassins and The Beat Buds
- Beats by Brownies & Lemonade
- Photo moments by Tinto Amorio and Think Tank Gallery
Sports on the beach:
- AAU girls beach volleyball
- Legends beach volleyball tournament 4-man
- National Beach Volleyball Organization (NBVO) coed doubles
- Kids’ races and activities
- LA Galaxy sunset soccer games
Competitions in the water:
- Stand up and prone paddleboard (SUP) surf competition
- Paddle cross race
- Lifeguard competitions including 3-lap dory
- 1.2 mile ocean swim
- Splash n’ dash
- Junior races (swim and paddleboard)