If you want to be happier, pet more dogs. If you want to completely overdose on happiness to the point of exploding, make your way to one of southern California’s triannual Corgi Beach Days!
My wife’s corgi obsession is a relatively recent development, but an understandable one. When she found out that over a thousand corgis would be meeting in Long Beach for a costume contest, a limbo contest, and a chance to chase bacon-flavored soap bubbles the date was immediately inked on our calendar…and the anticipation heightened with each passing hour.
When the day arrived and we pulled into the parking area, there were immediate corgi sightings left and right. We walked to the beach and petted our first corgis as their owners waited in line to buy commemorative T-shirts, stickers, towels, and flags. That’s when we spotted our first costumed corgi, dressed as some sort of unicorn princess. We were convinced she would be winning the costume contest later, but, as cute as she was, we hadn’t seen nothin’ yet…
We walked through a line of vendor tents specializing in doggie apparel, toys, corgi-related artwork, doggie caricatures, and even some fancy corgi jewelry. At first we were a little hesitant about petting random people’s dogs, but over the course of the day the “free love” vibe had us petting adorable corgis of all shapes, sizes, ages, and mixes.
By the ocean, dozens of corgis were splashing around and chasing each other. One corgi in particular was winning over the hearts of a growing crowd of Instagrammers due to a little shark fin strapped to her back and the way she tenaciously dug a hole in the sand and then plopped herself into it.
Simply wandering around the beach and petting a few dogs would’ve been rewarding enough, but then came the contests.
First up was the talent competition, which had corgis jumping through hoops and catching Frisbees. The costume contest kicked the cuteness up a notch with corgis dressed like the Statue of Liberty, a bald eagle, and Alexander Hamilton for the “patriotic” portion, and dressed like Mardi Gras kings, tacos, and jazz-era flappers for the “anything goes” round.
We were stuck in a food truck line during most of the corgi limbo competition, and we were busy having lunch during the corgi pie-eating contest, but we made plenty of corgi friends (notably one wearing a little lion costume) just sitting on our beach towels.
We made sure to get an official #corgibeachday photo and to stop by the Queen’s Best Stumpy Dog Rescue booth. Queen’s Best specializes in rescuing special needs corgis, and we wanted to meet Dixie, an 11-year-old corgi with back problems that had charmed us on the internet, as well as Panda Bear, a double back leg amputee who can’t control her bowels. It’s a testament to the irresistibility of the corgi breed that we still pondered taking them both home with us.
A “momo” is corgi-lover slang for a corgi’s butt (derived from the Japanese word for “peach,” which corgi butts are said to resemble), and of course there was a “best momo” competition. As with the other competitions, the best momo was decided via the crowd’s applause level. I don’t know what the their momo criteria was, but the crowd picked a favorite butt and soon it was bubble time.
The grand finale of the afternoon was a shower of allegedly bacon-flavored soap bubbles for the dogs to chase. Only a few seemed to catch on and truly go nuts for the bubbles, others just stared at the bubbles with their distinctive corgi smiles.
With the event officially over we made a final lap around the beach, enjoyed a few more moments of corgis playing in the ocean, and got in some last pettings. On the way to the car, we still took time to coo over a few final corgi puppies romping in the grass. It’s clear that no matter how much time you spend with these dogs it’s never quite enough. When the next Corgi Beach Day rolls around, there’s no question that we’ll be in attendance.