Named for Surf City’s original lifeguards, Bud & Gene’s opens at Huntington Beach Pier
Huntington Beach is a lot different than it was nearly a century ago, when Delbert “Bud” Higgins and Gene Belshe roamed the sand.
But Surf City’s first full-time paid lifeguards, hired in 1927, play a key role in a new destination at the end of the Huntington Beach Pier.
They are the namesakes for Bud & Gene’s, a casual seafood restaurant located there which held a ribbon-cutting grand-opening ceremony Tuesday.
Mayor Barbara Delgleize, restaurant owner Alex Leff and Chamber of Commerce president-elect John Villa were among the officials present, along with Huntington Beach City Council members and state Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen.
Menu items range from $10 to $36 at the restaurant. It is located at the iconic location formerly held by Ruby’s, which ended a 25-year run when it closed due to bankruptcy in early 2021.
Guests Tuesday dined on items like oysters in the half shell and a shrimp and melon aguachile. Takeout food will be available at the restaurant seven days a week from 11 a.m. until closing time, while the dining room is open from 2 to 9 p.m.
Descendents of Belshe, including Dana Belshe and his, daughters Roxy and Chloe, were present for the occasion.
The 6,905-square-foot restaurant also was previously the Sun Parlor and the End Cafe. The End Cafe was operated by the local Gustafson family until 1988, when the pier closed for four years following the “Great Storm of ’88.”
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