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Southern California celebrates Labor Day

September 1, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
All across Southern California, residents celebrated Labor Day Monday.Southern California residents spent the holiday at the beach, along a parade route, and even making a statement.

In Orange County, lots of folks hit the beach, making the most of the long holiday weekend.

At Huntington Beach Pier, people were enjoying the day.

"I love it. It's beautiful," said beach visitor Mellisa Jones.

"I love the waves. I'd jump off the cliffs though, into the water," says Ian Thomas, who is visiting the beach.

A cool mist and cloudy skies didn't seem to keep people from trying to catch some rays.

"I like it. I mean, it's a big change. We live up in the High Desert, and it's just dry heat. It doesn't bother me," said Mitchell Thomas, who was enjoying the beach.

Some families also camped out at Bolsa Chica State Beach, trying to get in some quality time before school starts.

"Relaxing. You know, just having a good time ... everyone getting together," said Marc Rosales, who was among the many enjoying the day.

"We're just enjoying the beach and the weather and the gorgeousness of being out in God's beauty," said Pam Plumb, another beach-goer.

For those who weren't a part of the beach scene, the Great Labor Day Cruise in Costa Mesa was just as exciting.

"It's out of sight. Like, this the number one to me. It's just the ultimate. You know, dropped down, lower to the ground, air bag ... it's beautiful. It's really nice," said Doc Stewart, a car enthusiast.

Custom and classic cars from 1972 and earlier were featured. They were all domestic vehicles from Southern California and across the West.

Thousands of people took advantage of the day at both Downtown Disney and Wild Rivers Water Park. It seemed as though just about everyone was trying to let loose as Labor Day weekend winded down.

(Disney is the parent company of ABC7.)

In the Inland Empire, it seemed a parade was the most traditional way to spend the holiday. Just about everyone wanted to get out for the last free summer day of the year.

The Norco Labor Day parade began at 10 a.m. Monday.

Marching bands, horses and local politicians were along the route.

"It's been really busy ... tremendously successful this year. Of course the weather has been with us too. It hasn't been as hot. The last couple of years it's been triple digits. And this year, it was only in the 90s. People were able to enjoy the fair much more," said Mayor of Norco Frank Hall.

Labor Day is known as a day off for citizens. However, with lots of candy thrown from the floats, the kids were hard at work collecting as many treats as they could carry.

"Just coming out and enjoying a little bit of time off from work," said Angela Abeyte, Norco resident.

"We're just enjoying the parades, spending time with family and hanging out ... trying to stay cool," said another parade-goer.

Parks all across the Inland Empire were sizzling with barbecues. Lake Perris was a popular spot.

For those on the picnic scene, spending some time in the water, playing a game or simply relaxing complimented some great food.

"A day of relaxation, celebration of people who work ... the troops," said Kristy Wilson, Riverside resident.

Meanwhile, several thousand were recognizing the true roots of the holiday.

The Los Angeles labor movement marked Labor Day with a march and rally in Wilmington.

The march began at about 10:00 a.m. along Avalon Boulevard and ended at Banning Park.

Organizers say due to tough economic times, these demonstrations are more important than ever. In addition, California state budget woes are hitting many state union workers hard.

"We've seen it, these economic times, as bad as they are now. But, we seem to pull through. And, again, that's why laborers are out here in force to show that we are still alive ? that we're out here to support the middle class," said parade organizer Louie Diaz.

Those taking part in the day's march were the Teamsters Union, the Ironworkers, and IBEW.

The day was filled with other organized labor events. There was a Labor Day mass at a local cathedral and a big rally in Banning Park.

 

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