SOLANA BEACH — Little did the Solana Beach Parks and Recreation Commission know that “Kokua,” the title of its first Beach Blanket Movie Night film and Hawaiian word for cooperation, would come to define the annual event that will celebrate its fifth anniversary this year from 6 to 10 p.m. Aug. 22 at Fletcher Cove Park.
“We all work together on planning, setup and cleanup,” said Gerri Retman, an event coordinator and Parks and Recreation commissioner whose husband, Ira Opper, produced “Kokua.”
“There’s a real sense of pride and everyone can reap the benefits of a fun, free, family-friendly event,” she said. “One of the most rewarding things was how many people called me this year to volunteer. They want to come out and help. That’s the sign of a positive, successful community event.”
Movie night actually begins that morning with the second annual Grom-o-Rama surf contest. The evening portion will kick off with musical entertainment by Kevin Misajon, followed by a welcome message from Mayor Mike Nichols and the presentation of awards from the surf contest. “Dear & Yonder” and “A Fly in the Champagne” will begin at sundown, with a raffle drawing taking place in between the two surf films.
Raffle prizes include a Firewire surfboard, BZ soft surfboard, beach cruiser donated by B&L Bike and Sports, Billabong wetsuit and Surf Ride skateboard.
For the fifth consecutive year, Baskin-Robbins has donated 500 scoops of ice cream that will be available for $1 each. Raffle tickets are also $1 apiece or less if purchased in bulk.
Residents are encouraged to bring picnics, low-back beach chairs and blankets. Pets and alcohol are prohibited.
Movie night, which nets about $4,500 each year, is the only fundraiser for the Parks and Recreation Commission, which also hosts Paws in the Park and the holiday tree lighting ceremony. About 1,200 to 1,500 residents attend annually.
“This is a community building event,” Retman said.