LIFE’S A BEACH

And Ed­mon­ton busi­nesses are cash­ing in on the Ac­ci­den­tal trend

Metro Canada (Edmonton) - - Front Page - Kevin Maimann

The “Ac­ci­den­tal Beach” has be­come an ac­ci­den­tal mar­ket­ing suc­cess for an Ed­mon­ton print­ing busi­ness.

When Whyte Av­enue shop Vivid Print cre­ated a tank top with a colour­ful retro logo bear­ing the nick­name of the beach that ap­peared on the North Saskatchewan River as a side ef­fect of LRT con­struc­tion, there was no in­ten­tion to sell them to the masses.

“We did it as kind of an in­ter­nal joke, re­ally. We just made a re­ally small run,” said Vivid busi­ness part­ner Mark Wilson. “But then peo­ple saw them and said, ‘Oh, can we get one?’ ”

Vivid owner Bee Wae­land de­signed the logo, and the shop sold out the first run of men’s and women’s tanks. On Tues­day, it was near­ing the end of its sec­ond run.

Wilson said the shop’s staff are all fans of the beach and the sense of com­mu­nity and re­spon­si­bil­ity that has de­vel­oped around it.

“It’s cel­e­brat­ing some­thing that I think has be­come close to the hearts of many Ed­mon­to­ni­ans,” he said.

Wilson said ev­ery time he’s been to the beach, he’s seen a broad cross-sec­tion of Ed­mon­to­ni­ans en­joy­ing it re­spect­fully.

Wilson feels peo­ple have been proud of tak­ing own­er­ship of the sandy spot be­cause it hasn’t been of­fi­cially sanc­tioned. “They’re not wav­ing beer bot­tles around, they’re not get­ting out of con­trol. Peo­ple are play­ing mu­sic but it’s not blar­ing,” Wilson said.

“I think they’re try­ing to avoid what hap­pened with the End of the World, where it’s be­come a nui­sance for the neigh­bour­hood.”

One res­i­dent carved a set of stairs into the steep path lead­ing down to the beach from a dirt trail, and oth­ers or­ga­nized a trash mob to keep the area clean.

Alex Lakusta made a wooden sign read­ing “Ac­ci­den­tal Beach” last Fri­day, and it re­mains hang­ing from a tree at the en­trance, to the joy of many so­cial me­dia users.

“I just want it to be called Ac­ci­den­tal Beach. I wanted to do my part to make that stick as much as pos­si­ble,” Lakusta told Metro Tues­day.

Lakusta is a hobby wood­worker in his spare time, and didn’t in­tend to tell any­one he did made the sign un­til some­one “sleuthed” him out on Twit­ter.

He said he ap­pre­ci­ates the beach for its lo­ca­tion and vis­i­bil­ity, and the com­mu­nal ef­forts to main­tain it.

“It’s kind of brought the com­mu­nity to­gether,” Lakusta said.

City coun­cil hasn’t de­cided whether to main­tain the beach next sum­mer and has not given it an of­fi­cial name.

We did it as kind of an in­ter­nal joke, re­ally. We just made a re­ally small run. Mark Wilson

KEvin Tuong/METro

mark Wilson, part­ner at Vivid print cre­ated the ac­ci­den­tal beach tank­top’s — which are sell­ing like hot­cakes.

KEVIN TUONG FOR METRO; IN­SET: CON­TRIB­UTED

Mark Wilson, part­ner at Vivid Print cre­ated the Ac­ci­den­tal Beach Tank­top’s which are sell­ing like hot­cakes. In­set: Fish Gri­wkowsky and Amber Byrne en­joy Ed­mon­ton’s “Ac­ci­den­tal Beach” wear­ing tank tops from Vivid Print.

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