Surf’s up! And if you don’t own a surfboard (or know how to ride the waves), that’s okay. We can still indulge in outta-this-world arepas and drinks at Caracas while soaking in the ocean views at the beach. Join us at Rockaway Beach for an all-day picnic.
Rockaway Beach has beautiful water and endless views of the Atlantic Ocean. You can get some delicious items at Caracas Arepa Bar, where there will be vegetarian/vegan arepas available and drinks. Or, just bring your own food. Sorry - BYO alcohol isn't allowed on the beach, but we can still get a little ‘something-something’ at Caracas and enjoy the party on the patio.
We’ll be gathering at Beach 108th Street and the Atlantic Ocean Beach. This area is easy to get to by bus, subway, ferry or car. Look for Deanna’s green, blue and yellow striped beach umbrella to help you find the group. We’ll be on the beach just to the left of the Beach 108th Street entrance (between Beach 108 and 106 - Caracas is between Beach 105 and Beach 106). Please note that since Hurricane Sandy, there is no actual boardwalk on the beach. Additionally, entrance points and swimming areas are somewhat limited, which is why we selected this particular spot. It does get pretty crowded on sunny days so please look out for us on the beach.
What to bring:
-- Food and drinks (especially water) for yourself or plan to visit one of the food options listed below. If you wish to share food, just remember that not everyone has the same dietary restrictions or preferences, but please bring only vegetarian or vegan options.
-- Beach towel (especially if you plan to go swimming) and/or a sheet or blanket to sit on (sheets do better than blankets on the sand - the sand easily wipes off while you have to shake a blanket)
**There’s a beach shop at 116th street if you forget to bring a towel or other items for the beach. They also sell boogie boards and a lot of other beach stuff.**
-- Games (cards, frisbee, etc -- anything you wish but if the beach is really crowded, you might be playing in the surf; please keep in mind that not everyone will wish to play games)
-- Magazines, music, etc - all make for a nice, relaxing day at the beach
*Please keep in mind that anything you bring will likely get covered in sand, including your electronics. A good tip is to put them into a ziplock bag to keep the sand out (yes, including your cell phone).
Facilities: there are bathrooms right next door to Caracas and outdoor showers to rinse off the sand.
Caracas Arepa Bar:
Right down the beach from where we’ll be is the Caracas Arepa Bar. They have some vegetarian and a Super V vegan arepa option plus a great selection of smoothies, juices, popsicles, beer (and micheladas! a spicy, lemon beer cocktail) and frozen sangria. Usually, there is a DJ on the weekends.
One of the founders, Maribel Araujo, is a vegan and said she can bring out tofu related options. This way, any arepa can be made vegan with the addition of tofu (and subtraction of all meat related items).
Further down the beach is Rockaway Taco. This taco shack attracts long lines for their legendary tacos. They do have tofu tacos available and a lovely watermelon fresca but be prepared to wait about 20-30 minutes in line. Note: Rockaway Taco is just off of the beach at 95-19 Rockaway Beach Boulevard -- the line starts on 96th Street and two blocks off the beach.
There is a Rite Aid at 108th Street near the beach where you can get water and other items. (Note: Deanna has never entered the store and is unclear if they have prepared vegan food options, but they will definitely have water, sunscreen and the like).
Subway: A train + S train (transfer at Broad Channel stop, after Howard Beach/JFK) and exit at the Beach 105 Street stop.
Ferry: Picks up at Pier 11 on Wall Street Landing starting at 9am until 5:25pm, last pick up from Beach 108th Street Landing is 6:55pm. $20 one-way/ $30 round-trip (and they serve brunch-friendly cocktails on the trip out for an additional charge) http://www.newyorkbeachferry.com/rockaway_beach_ferry_schedule_from_Pier_11_NYC.htm
Bus: Q53 Limited Bus in Queens - travels down Broadway (from Roosevelt Ave) and Woodhaven Blvd to Cross Bay Blvd and drops off a block from the beach.
What’s the weather going to be like? Since a rainy day at the beach is just no fun (and there is really no shelter nearby), we’ll only hold the Meetup if the weather is good (i.e. no rain) and set a raindate if needed.
In the evening, Caracas usually has a DJ and other activities to keep the party going (weather permitted of course). There are also usually parties at night at Playland, which is down the block from Caracas heading toward Rockaway Taco.
So come early, come late and enjoy the local flavor beach in the Rockaways. As a group, we'll be there until 6 but people are welcome to stay and celebrate on their own or in small groups too.
See you on the beach!