When we Southern Californians stroll the store aisles in September, pausing to smile at calendars full of fall leaves and ads depicting people in cozy sweaters, we know our local truth: It is really hot outside, still.
September can be a scorcher, and has, in the past, delivered some of our region's hottest days on record. It's a fact that prompted the people behind the Port of Los Angeles Lobster Festival to up and change the longtime date of the eat-music party from the middle of September to late July.
So find your hat with the crustacean claws, and tell your butter-dipping buds not to circle September this year: The founded-in-1999 fest is going full mid-summer, in the search for a cooler date.
The 2016 party, which will happen next to the USS Iowa in San Pedro, is on from Friday, July 22 through Sunday, July 24.
Some new developments, along with the new date? Guests told fest organizers they want to go the full double lobster with their meals, so that will happen (look for "two 1.25 lb. fresh steamed Maine lobsters," along with the traditional trimmings of cole slaw, spiced potatoes, and such).
Also? If you are active military, retired military, or a veteran your admission to the festival is free (and you'll be able to visit the USS Iowa for free, too).
Also? Seating will be increased, and improvements will be made in the parking end of things, say organizers.
If straight-up steamed lobster is not exactly your thing, but a zingy lobster roll, or creamy lobster mac and cheese is, you're in luck: Both will be served at the festival. And you can enjoy them, or whatever you happen to nosh, while listening to the live tunes that have become a hallmark of the three-day lark.
A lark that, fingers crossed, may not be quite as toasty in 2016, thanks to a schedule change-up. It's hard to believe that some of Southern California's hottest days happen just ahead of fall, but believe it we do.
Perhaps some cooling ocean breezes, breezes that are closer to June Gloom than the warm winds of fall, will be the ideal complement to a festival devoted to a crustacean-based cuisine that's associated with fog, ocean water, and chillier climes.