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Tiki Bar Welcome

East Anaheim Street is saying aloha to a yet-to-be-named tiki-themed bar, with a grand opening tomorrow (Friday) night.

The name of the bar will be revealed at the event, set to take place at 7 p.m. with performances by The Thingz and Hula Girls at 3522 E. Anaheim St., according to co-owners Jim Ritson, Brett Gallo and Erick Verduzco-Vega.

“This is a full-on Polynesian tiki bar,” Ritson said, noting that the place was designed by renowned Huntington Beach-based tropical décor expert Ben Bassham, aka “Bamboo Ben.”

Gallo and Vega, who also own The Stache Bar on Fourth Street near Alamitos Avenue, and Ritson, the proprietor of 4th Street Vine on Retro Row, said Long Beach needed a tiki bar — especially since Don the Beachcomber’s closing last year.

The tiki business is taking over a large venue — long serving as a neighborhood watering hole; it was formerly occupied by Tidal Bay bar and, before that, Liquid Lounge. Ritson said there would be multiple rooms “or huts” within the bar, plus an outdoor patio. Ritson said the spot on East Anaheim Street was appealing to the three friends and businessmen because of the available parking and “great bones” of the building.

Following the grand opening, Long Beach’s one-and-only tiki bar will be serving mai tais seven days a week, with regular entertainment. And, Ritson noted, the kitchen is still being worked on for future food service.

“We are still getting it together,” Ritson said as the final touches were coming together this week.

Port Provides Jobs

One in five jobs in the city of Long Beach are connected to the Port of Long Beach, according to an Economic Impact Study presented last week to the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners.

Activity at the seaport supports 51,090 jobs in Long Beach, based on the study by EDR Group Inc. The report also showed that across Southern California, the port supports 576,350 jobs, providing $30.8 billion in income; statewide, 705,430 jobs are supported by the port, providing $38.7 billion in income; and the port supports about 2.6 million jobs in the United States, providing $126.8 billion in income.

“The Port of Long Beach is an economic engine that generates one in five jobs for the hardworking people living in our community, as well as one in 20 good-paying jobs across a five-county region in Southern California,” said Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners President Tracy Egoscue. “For every job supported in the city of Long Beach, there are 50 jobs supported throughout the United States, which demonstrates that trade moving through this port positively impacts the national economy in many different ways.”

Port-related jobs in Long Beach increased 70% since the previous economic impact study, completed in 2004. The earlier study showed that the port was connected to 30,000 jobs, or about one in eight.

For a copy of the report, visit the Port of Long Beach’s website.

New Reading

The Long Beach Public Library this week launched some fresh reading material: its newly designed website, designed to better provide the community with free digital resources.

Visit LongBeach.gov/library to sign up for mailing lists, explore a revamped digital library, stream material, see an events calendar, submit feedback and more.

“In planning for this new website, we focused on offering a contemporary, clean layout with improved navigation to better connect site visitors with the essential services, programs, information and community resources available,” Director of Library Services Glenda Williams said.

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