Summer Beach Party Trumpets Arrival Of Sandy Public Oasis

July 22, 2014

The pop up beach awaits.

The pop up beach awaits.

by James J. Jefferies

The odds are if you’re reading this, you live here year-round and you’ve endured an incredible stretch of hundred-degree days, but have been enjoying our robust monsoon season rife with powerful storms, and are excited about the official arrival of the SunLink streetcar on July 25th. Yes, we are finally on the cusp of this long-awaited day, when the streetcars will finally take their first public passengers, ushering in a brand-new era of prosperity and public transportation for not just Downtown, but each of the four districts the car will initially serve. The city of Tucson will be tied together in a way previously unknown, making our urban core a much more compelling place to work, live, and play.

So you might be thinking that such a large local milestone demands some serious celebration, and by jove, you’re absolutely right! The Downtown Tucson Partnership is excited to throw a massive Summer Beach Party to break in the Summer In The City event, The Beach, which will remain in full sandy effect through August 31st on the MLK lot opposite the patio at the Hotel Congress at Toole and 5th Avenue.

We’re literally talking about 170+ tons of trucked-in gritty fun. You can build a castle, play volleyball, whatever you like (within reason and/or obvious legal limits). For the big streetcar launch day, there will also be a beer garden serving up ice cold brew. The Summer Beach Party jumps off at 4pm on July 25th, and will run through the night, which leaves you in a perfect position to continue the party at any number of fantastic nearby watering holes and nightspots.

We said massive, and we meant it! The space will remain available for public use through August 31st.

We said massive, and we meant it! The space will remain available for public use through August 31st.

“There’s a movement across the country to activate public spaces,” said Downtown Tucson Partnership CEO Michael Keith. As seen in places like New York City, San Francisco, and Philadelphia, the idea of a specifically defined open-use public space in an urban environment is that it will remain free and open for the public to use for an endless variety of potential events, which gives members of a community not just a viable and valuable resource, but also a profound sense of co-ownership over those spaces.

The beach space being erected on the MLK lot will not just have a series of predetermined programmed events (though there will be some spectacular and fun weekend parties brought to you by neighboring Hotel Congress/Maynards and Playground), but there will also be PLENTY of available calendar space for the public to utilize the sandy spot in any way they see fit. Wanna have an afternoon game of ultimate frisbee on the sand? A large-scale beach picnic for you and your company? Just book it. DTP’s The Beach calendar here, and reservations can be made here.

The pop up beach is made possible by the support of Cox Communications, Staker Parson, Friends of the Tucson Streetcar, Don Bourn, Madden Media, Crest Ins., One East Broadway, Jan Cervelli, Michael Keith and the Tucson community. The beach will be available from July 25th through Labor Day weekend.

Again, this is really just the tip of the iceberg, as Downtown Tucson embraces an entirely new mindset for what our community is capable of when it comes out to work, live, and play. Stay tuned for more!