Beach Concessions Open This Friday — Just Keep Your Plastics At Bay

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Locals — Why wait for Memorial weekend? This Friday, May 18, jumpstart your summer — Rockaway-style, as all three Rockaway Beach Club (RBC) boardwalk concessions will be open, getting the ultimate beach party started with great food and of course, live music.

As the fun kicks off at the concessions this weekend, some may notice some environmentally-friendly changes. As part of RBC’s new Ocean Awareness Campaign, a plastic ban will be enforced, so if you’re expecting to get your much-desired beverage in a plastic cup with a plastic straw and just toss it, think twice.

Beach 106th Concession’s Caracas Arepa Bar owner, Maribel Araujo, says she is excited about RBC’s campaign to ban plastics. “I know it’s going to be hard at first for people to get acclimated to the idea, but it’s so important for us as a beachside community. The amount of plastic materials that is littered on our beaches and ends up in the ocean is daunting. However, as a united front, we are all going to do our best to push the plastic ban,” she said. Araujo said all of the concessions will be selling reusable cups and straws, and as an incentive, one dollar will be taken off drinks when you bring your own cup at any of the concession bars.

As for what’s new and poppin’ at the Beach 106th concession, for foodie and beverage gourmands, in addition to its popular arepas and to-die-for sangria, Caracas will be dishing up some vegan options, and debuting a new drink, Hard Kombucha. According to Araujo, with 3.2 percent alcohol, this Hard Kombucha drink is said to be good for your digestive system, accentuated with a little buzz. On the entertainment front, though lively music will be pumping this weekend, next Friday, May 25, get ready for Rockaway and Rincón, PR, favorite, Big Squid to turn up the heat at Caracas with their high energy R&B, blues, funk and NOLA sound, starting at 6 p.m. On Saturday, May 26, the “let loose” Latin party begins as Venezuelan DJs and artists, DJ MPeach and DJ Darelectric’s combined high energy, Latin-influenced Afro-Caribbean dance beats will have you sweating and lusting for more. And keep your dancing shoes on, the party continues at Caracas the rest of the weekend with more eclectic music summer soul.

Next up is the well-trafficked and largest beach concession of the RBC group on Beach 97th. Grab your chance to indulge in returning food and drink vendors, Low Tide Bar, Breezy BBQ, Uma’s At The Beach, Lobster Joint, City Sticks, La Cevicheria, Super Burrito, and La Fruteria. Sadly, Bolivian Llama Party won’t be returning, but the foodies behind Rockaway Raw Bar are bringing something new for seafood lovers. The new High 97 will be debuting as the ultimate fish joint for those craving a good fish n’ chips, fried fish sandwich and their ultimate Fried 97. Jordan Woolf, founder behind Rockaway Raw Bar and Hot 97, is excited about premiering the new fish joint at the concession. “We are only going to be serving high quality and sustainable fish, and are using the company, Sea To Table, as a source for our catch,” Woolf said. As for Low Tide Bar manager, Danny Kent, he is just stoked about finally opening for summer. “Besides the new Hot 97, I’m so ready to finally be able to grab a coffee in the morning at La Fruteria on the boardwalk. Really happy to see the boardwalk wake up finally for summer, and continue to be the lifeline of the community,” Kent said.

On the entertainment front, get your dancing shoes on as Rattrap Bumpkin jams out with their pirate rock at the Beach 97th concession on Friday, May 18. Though Rattrap doesn’t come on stage until 7:30 p.m., from 6 p.m., Ecstatic Mermen will entertain you with their seafaring rock. As for next weekend, you will be already warmed up for Wine With Sue on Saturday, May 26, Solshyne on Sunday, May 27, and Ska Boom on Monday, May 28. The music kicks off starting at 6 p.m., all three days.

Next is none other than Rippers at the Beach 86th Street concession. According to Rippers’ manager, Domenic Boero, it will be business as usual. “We are hitting the ground running, dishing up what we are known and loved for, like our irresistible Rippers’ cheeseburgers, great drinks and cool vibe.” Dance the night away this weekend at Rippers with world famous DJ Diva as she pumps her infectious 70s/80s/90s music. Also next Saturday, May 26 at 6 p.m., don’t miss the chance to ride the waves with the Supertones at Rippers.

On the east end is DredSufer Grill on Beach 17th. Though they won’t be opening until Memorial Day Weekend, they have quite a new bevy of experiences to explore. According to DredSurfer owner, Charles Jacobs, get ready for the ultimate beachside Caribbean-infused trip. “Starting Memorial Day Weekend, every Saturday this summer, we are going to have live reggae with several popular artists. Also we are debuting our ‘Fish Night Fridays,’ and of course, our popular jerk chicken, oxtail, and fried green plantains with guacamole, plus more! I just want people to come down, and see how beautiful the east end is, and I promise that this summer will be magical for all seaside lovers,” Jacobs said.

Riis Beach Park Bazaar won’t officially open until Memorial Day Weekend either, but whether you get there by car, bike, bus — it will totally be worth the trip — as you will be indulged with fantastic beachside entertainment. On Saturday, May 26 at 1 p.m., come out and be blessed reggae-style by Jahstix as he rolls out his reggae riddims’. On Sunday, May 27, also at 1 p.m., gear up for more roots reggae with Top Shotta Band featuring Screechy Dan, and on Sunday, May 28, 1 p.m., if you’re a Jonny Cash fan, change up the vibe with Johnny Kinnaird and the Outlaw Country Tribute.

Though the beaches won’t officially open until Saturday, May 26 — from this Friday, grab your chance to dive into what makes Rockaway special  — our signature boardwalk experience.

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