The fun doesn't end on the Fourth

The morning after the Fourth of July is a time for people to get rest from the celebrations and libations enjoyed the night before.

In the Huntington Beach Pier Plaza parking lot Friday morning, however, there was no rest for the dozens of vendors setting up their booths in preparation for the second day of the holiday's Pier Plaza Festival.

The event, now in its eighth year, was put together by the Fourth of July Board and closely resembles the weekly Surf City Nights.

Around 70 vendors made the pier their temporary home as they set up shop for four days, offering all kinds of goods and entertainment for residents and tourists during the holiday weekend.

The beachfront near downtown Huntington Beach was calm at around 11 a.m. Friday, as various food smells started to fill the air. One could easily move from booth to booth without running into heavy foot traffic.

"The day after will be a little quiet because it's a work day for some people," Fourth of July Board member Chris Young said. "The weirdness of the Thursday holiday is that some take [Friday] off and some don't."

The Pier Plaza Festival had the staples, kettle corn, fried foods and jewelry booths, and also a few people selling pillows and pushing custom golf cart rentals. And if you looked carefully, you could even find Lucha Libre masks for sale.

"Two vendors came with pillows and sheets and you'd think that was more of a home show-type of thing, but they [sell well] here," board member Linda Vircks said.

Vendors John Naccarato traveled the 40 miles from his home in Alhambra to Huntington Beach to sell his Papa Nacca's Jerky.

It was his first time participating in the Huntington Beach event, but the 66-year-old had been visiting the city since the 1950s.

"My wife grew up in Gardena and I grew up in Azusa, which is at the end of Highway 39, so we would come down here during high school," Naccarato said. "It's nice to be back and we've enjoyed our time."

Naccarato wasn't the only one with a long commute. Adrian Marchis and his family from Agoura Hills spent two days in Huntington Beach to watch the fireworks and enjoy the beach. He said he always wanted to celebrate the Fourth this way but isn't sure he wants to make the hour and a half drive an annual tradition.

Foot traffic began to pick up after noon, with more people flocking to the booths and the beach.

Nina Sullivan, 35, of Mission Viejo, said her father saw the event in a local paper and decided it would be something fun for the family.

"It's all about the food, hanging out with people, partying and drinking," she said.

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