WELCOME TO SEAL BEACH!
The Seal Beach Chamber of Commerce said it best, Seal Beach has a small town California feel, and is a big time destination. With over two-thirds of its landmass inhabited by the Naval Weapons Station, Seal Beach is comprised of neighborhoods, businesses and gorgeous beach front views. Home of Leisure World, the first planned retirement community, over one-third of its residents are retirees in that region. The quaint “Old Town,” Surfside and the Hill regions are close to the beach and have many shops and residences, which make Seal Beach feel like “Mayberry by the Sea.” College Park West is located just north of 7th Street in Long Beach and West of the 605 freeway and is close to the facilities at California State University and the Veterans Hospital. With a large park & plenty of shopping nearby, College Park East, near the Joint Forces Training Base and Old Ranch Country Club are the final two communities that complete this lovely town. Explore what Seal Beach has to offer from annual events to beaches and amenities. Seal Beach has something for residents and visitors alike all year long.
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Annual events include a holiday parade, Fourth of July Fireworks Show & Trick-or-Treating for children along Main Street. There are many community activities during all times of the year, especially in the summer months. Enjoy the weekly Farmers market in Alamitos Bay, the Summer Concert Series at the Pier, annual classic car show and kite festival . If you visit during the spring and summer you’ll experience the famous GRUNION RUN …it’s an amazing thrill to fish by hand by the Seal Beach Pier.[/expand]
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The major highways in Seal Beach are Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1) on the coast connecting the beach cities, the San Diego Freeway (I-405) connecting with all other major freeways in Southern California, and the Garden Grove Freeway (SR22). Pacific Coast Highway is a national scenic byway stretching from San Diego to San Francisco.
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Seal Beach is currently under the Los Alamitos School District. Younger students (K-5) go to McGaugh Elementary School, Hopkinson Elementary School, Rossmoor Elementary, Lee Elementary, or Weaver Elementary. Students in grades 6–8 attend either Oak Middle School or McAuliffe Middle School. High school students go to Los Alamitos High School. Families find Seal Beach an especially easy and comfortable place to raise children with its family oriented nature and focus.
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With many smaller locations to serve the immediate needs of health and wellness in Seal Beach, including The Seal Beach Family Medical Group, The Los Alamitos Medical Center serves as a primary hospital and full service medical facility to this area.
With Commitment to quality and excellence, the Los Alamitos Medical Center is a popular full-service medical facility that has been a part of the community for more than 40 years. Offering a complete array of medical programs and patient services, it’s no surprise that residents from nearly every surrounding community to Los Al flock to it for medical, preventative and maternity care services.
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It goes without saying that Main Street in Seal Beach is a must see for visitors and residents alike. An old classic movie theater, plenty of bars and restaurants line an old fashioned street that ends at the picturesque Seal Beach Pier.
In addition to the main drag, here are two more attractions that trill and intrigue our locals and the company they keep:
Seal Beach National Wildlife Refuge
Home to such species as the snowy egret and the great blue heron, this wetlands area is one of the last undeveloped coastal areas in Southern California. Designated by President Nixon in 1972 for the preservation of the environment.
Naval Weapons Station. Main entrance
800 Seal Beach Blvd.
Red Car Museum
On the old Pacific Electric Right of Way. Car No. 1734 is a rare Pacific Electric tower car built in 1925 which serves as the museum headquarters. It was once a roving machine shop sent out to troubleshoot problems along the 40-mile Pacific Electric LA-Newport Line. It operated for almost 50 years until 1950. The museum displays photographs of early Seal Beach, sea shells and Indian artifacts collected locally.
Main and Electric Avenue
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The roller coaster and gambling parlors of Seal Beach’s rough and tumble 1920s have given way to sand castles and the charm of an old-fashioned downtown today.
Incorporated as Bay City, the town made its official debut with a population of 250 on October 25, 1915, during a night full of music, food and fireworks. The festivities seemed appropriate for a town with beaches covered with picnic tables, plenty of surf, and amusement zone crowned with a scream-generating roller coaster and the longest pier south of San Francisco.
Soon, the town was rechristened Seal Beach after the seals that used to frequent the coast there. Its good times and Henry Huntington’s Pacific Electric Railway brought it more year-round residents.
The tents of the earliest settlers were replaced with bungalows and by the twilight of the 1920s, Seal Beach’s roads sported permanent homes, according to “A Story of Seal Beach,” by Jean B. Door.
The Depression years brought a change of pace. Low-cost amusements were the order of the day. Some of the town’s 2,000 residents started the Seal Beach Civic Choir while others enjoyed the little Seal Beach Airport on the corner of Bay Boulevard (now Seal Beach Boulevard) and Highway 101, where they could watch biplanes take off. During World War II, homes at Anaheim Landing in the city gave way to a US Navy ammunition and submarine net depot.
The loss of Anaheim Landing marked a big change in Seal Beach. Already gone or about to disappear were the roller coaster, which burned in the late ’20s; the Jewel Cafe, site of the town’s inaugural celebration; and the dance pavilion next to the pier.
But the loss of Anaheim Landing also marked the beginning of the city’s expansion, as the population grew after World War II.
Beach erosion, oil drilling, a new subdivision, professional gambling and other issues were debated. At least one gambling parlor had been around before, but by the end of the decade professional gambling was banned.
At the same time, the old electric railroad tracks were ripped up, public recreation facilities were expanded, and the city arranged to get a small share of royalties from a newly built, privately owned offshore oil rig.
By 1960, Seal Beach had a population of 6,994. But new subdivisions and annexations soon added to the population.
Building of the walled retirement community, Leisure World, began in 1962 with enough apartments for almost 10,000 new residents. Surfside, originally a summertime beach community, joined the city in 1968.
Today, Seal Beach is becoming a haven for those in search of a quiet, hometown atmosphere. With its old buildings, the downtown Old Town beach is filled with small reminders of Bay City and its lively little colony by the beach.