Bikini contest ‘too hot for Hermosa’
A local radio station says its bikini contest is too hot for Hermosa Beach to handle after city officials urged a local restaurant owner to cancel the event.
The KLOS 95.5 FM bikini contest was supposed to be held at Hennessey’s Tavern on Pier Plaza on Saturday, but owner Paul Hennessy canceled it Thursday at city officials’ request. Officials said in a letter to the station they were concerned about the venue’s ability to handle the crowds that KLOS 95.5 would bring in.
The restaurant has a capacity of 155 people for its indoor areas, officials said, citing concerns that the remaining people who weren’t allowed in would create congestion in the downtown area.
The radio station had a different interpretation of the decision.
“It looks like ‘The Heidi and Frank Show’ is just too hot for Hermosa,” KLOS posted on its website.
KLOS 95.5 morning show hosts Heidi Hamilton and Frank Kramer expressed surprise at the decision during their program Friday morning.
“There’s no reason to have us kicked out of a beach town because we’re having a bikini contest,” Kramer said. “It’s not like there’s not bikinis walking around there all the time anyway.”
The radio hosts called for a boycott of Hermosa Beach. Hamilton started a social media hashtag, “#boycott #hermosa” as well as “#toohotforhermosa.”
City spokeswoman Katie Casey said the type of event wasn’t a factor in asking for it to be canceled.
Casey said Hennessey canceled the contest after the city asked for a $5,000 deposit for extra public safety staff that might be needed during the event. The money would have been refundable if additional staff had not been used to protect public safety outside the bar, she said.
Hennessey said that he bowed to the city’s wishes after receiving phone calls from a council member, the city manager and the chief of police.
Council member Carolyn Petty, who said she called Hennessy about the event, said for her the issue was about more than the crowd.
While the number of people the event would have brought in was a concern, a bikini contest isn’t a good fit for Hermosa Beach, she said Monday.
“Having an event like that is not what the residents want,” Petty said. “I’m of the opinion that people want downtown to be more family friendly, and the event was the opposite of that.”
Hennessey said that he has done past events with KLOS 95.5 and hopes to do more in the future.
“They [KLOS 95.5] bring in a nice crowd, but it’s not a large or unruly crowd,” Hennessey said.
The station said on its website that the event will still go on at another location and is asking for its listeners to help choose.
KLOS 95.5 listeners can nominate their favorite Southern California city to host the bikini competition at 955klos.com.