Floating Around Pt. Dume

Last year marked the 18th annual Point Dume Fourth of July Parade and the crowd was bigger, brighter and more patriotic than ever, as seen above. The longstanding community tradition includes hundreds of Point Dume residents, their friends and family as well as attendees from across Malibu. 

The Point Dume Fourth of July Parade is a fixture for residents as a way to celebrate the country with fun, food and floats of all shapes and sizes. 

Now in its 19th year, the parade typically makes its way around the neighborhood, from Birdview Drive to Fernhill Drive before finally arriving at Pt. Dume Marine Science School. This year, due to school construction in preparation for next year’s school realignment, the parade will be more like a slow-moving block party instead of stopping at the school, according to organizer Doug Randall.

“We are still doing the parade on the same exact route [with a] full-road closure,” he said in a phone call with The Malibu Times.

Randall emphasized that he wants to “make the spectators part of the overall experience and event.” 

Cindy O’Shea, a nearly 50-year resident in the Pt. Dume community, says everyone has a float—from children with toy wagons to adults with decked-out golf carts.

“[The parade] was just adorable,” O’Shea recalled, speaking of the first Pt. Dume Fourth of July Parade. “In the first two years, we were looking at it and realizing it was a real parade.

“And the third year, there were joggers … in the parade and we started handing out lemonade.”

That was more than 17 years ago. O’Shea continues to hand out lemonade annually with her husband, Tim, and daughter, Natalie (who travels from out of town to join the festivities).  

The trio have a whole set-up going on, complete with a table and a few chairs. The family gets “big buckets of ice, mini waters and mini boxes of lemonade”; they then make the lemonade in cups to pass out.

As the years went on, more and more neighbors brought their own chairs to sit and enjoy a cool glass of lemonade.

O’Shea refers to the event as the “Norman Rockwell Point Dume Parade”—after the late artist and author—for its “adorable” and “hokey-pokey” qualities.

She recalled seeing vintage cars, horses and even members from the fire department in parades past.

Cormac O’Herlihy, another Pt. Dume resident, even brings out his bubble machine to the lemonade stand. Each year, he adds another bubble machine to the bunch. (O’Shea guessed O’Herlihy has around seven to nine bubble machines.)

The effect? 

“The whole street is a sea of bubbles,” O’Shea said. “It’s beautiful. It’s kind of like Disneyland.”

She added that the “fun, community” event is what Los Angeles is missing and what is so special about Malibu. 

Last year, Randall reintroduced “old-school Fourth of July activities” that local kids were unaware of, such as three-legged races and tug of war. 

This year, residents can expect a full-fledged block party at the end of the parade (between Grayfox Street and Bison Court), complete with a band, free watermelon and even a hot dog on a stick (courtesy of the Santa Monica-founded fast food chain with the same name). 

Note: This story was written prior to this year’s parade, as the newspaper went to print on Tuesday evening, July 3. Check back next week for photos from this year’s parade and block party.