successful as always (although I did learn from the police this year
that the 300,000 spectators number is bogus.) The largest parade west
of the Mississippi (boy, I hope that's true) boasted celebrities such
as actor Mickey Rooney, Nickelodeon star Lisa Foiles and Animal
Planet host Matt Gallant, and athletes such as three-time Olympian
and 10-time record holder Dwight Stones and the SCATS gymnastics
team, whose members did aerials on the hot asphalt and 20-second
handstands and swung like chimpanzees from a bar on their float.
I injured my knee and couldn't make the hike Downtown, but I heard
it was great. Sadly, I enjoyed fireworks out of town.
Just weeks later the Philips Fusion came to town with the U.S.
Open of Surfing, the Soul Bowl and all the music, entertainment and
excitement a person could stand.
It drew record numbers to Surf City's beaches. Even I made it down
to this event! In fact, I had a sweet spot on the pier just above the
action as first Kekoa Bacalso of Hawaii took the win in the Lost Pro
Juniors final and then as Cory Lopez schooled several other great
surfers like Andy Irons, whom I was directly above when he pulled off
a sick drop.
No sooner had the Philips Fusion left town when surfing made its
debut in the ESPN X Games right here in Huntington Beach. I,
naturally, had a previous engagement, but I heard it was amazing -- a
first-rate event all the way and a milestone in surf competitions
with its team format.
Without a breather in sight for sports fans, the AVP Nissan Series
Huntington Beach Open hit town the week after the X Games. When I
trudged Downtown sick as a dog, I just missed the finals but saw the
evidence of an amazing time, and a rancorous crowd of bikini- and
board-short-clad fans with yellow thunder sticks flooded by me.
A reportedly intense women's final saw the No. 1 seeded duo of
Kerri Walsh and Misty May take the win. Volleyball legend Karch
Kiraly teamed with Brent Doble to claim the men's crown.
The summer passed in a whirlwind of huge events Downtown that I
experienced mostly through stories I edited. But with record crowds
at most of them, it seems I was the only one missing out.
I hope I am the only one wondering where the summer went.
So, as the days again get shorter, traffic congestion begins to
ease and back to school press releases flood the office, I now gear
up for a vacation led by my friend Cap'n Lang. Enjoy the weather
while it lasts and watch out for dorsal fins.
* DANETTE GOULET is the city editor. She can be reached at (714)
965-7170 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.