When I was a kid, there used to be people who would come up here and sing to the ocean," he added. "And I remember as a child, the Nassau Hotel was a five star hotel and we had people dress formally in suits. It was like a fashion show. We had restuarants and activities up and down the boardwalk."
Councilwoman Fran Adelson noted the numerous 5K races, fundraisers, memorials and events that take place on the boardwalk throughout the year.
"It's an extension of the community in that we have the fireworks, and the arts and crafts festivals, and all the people that do all their benefit walks ..." Adelson said. "The boardwalk is used by so many people. The Michelle O'neill Volleyball [Tournament], the Polar Bears, all the concerts in the summer, it's just a focal point. The boardwalk symbolizes our representation to the world."
Resident Ivy Garbowitz, a 20-year resident and captain of a local volleyball team, likened the boardwalk to the TV show "Cheers."
"I needed to be a part of this," she said of the ceremony. "You're always looking up on the boardwalk to see who you know, who's passing by, who's going to wave to you. [You] always felt special when you came down here, it was like a celebrity trail. And the celebrities were the common folk of Long Beach. I think a lot of people are hoping that whatever they build, we get the same sensory experience. And there has to be some sort of [space] under the boardwalk."