Capturing the world through photography, video and multimedia

Muscle beach

Muscle beach

Sept. 6, 1954: DeForrest “Moe” Most, 37, bottom, Art Kidder, 37, and Sandra Hollabaugh, 14, draw a crowd with their stunts at Santa Monica’s Muscle Beach on Labor Day weekend.

In this 2006 DeForrest “Moe” Most obituary, Los Angeles Times writer Valerie Nelson reported:

“The unofficial ringmaster of the impromptu shows at Santa Monica’s Muscle Beach from the 1930s through the 1950s was Deforrest ‘Moe’ Most, a gymnast who had a talent for persuading teenagers and tourists — and the occasional celebrity — that they too could join in.”

In the obituary, Jack LaLanne was quoted as saying, “Moe was one of the greatest athletes I’ve ever known. We did tricks that nobody else had ever done.”

Muscle Beach started in the 1930s just south of the Santa Monica Pier. Crowds became very large in the 1950s, leading to the closure of Muscle Beach in 1959.

In nearby Venice, a small bodybuilding location run by the city of Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department became the new Muscle Beach.

Today there are two Muscle Beaches. In 1987, the city of Los Angeles dedicated Muscle Beach Venice.  In 1989, the city of Santa Monica rededicated the original Muscle Beach.


  1. September 3, 2010, 8:36 am

    […] Fifty-six years ago this weekend. Learn more about the photo here. […]

  2. September 7, 2010, 11:02 am

    "aagrhhpphh…dammit Jack stop with the burritos before the show, I'm choking over here."

    By: citizen-xyz

Add a comment or a question.

If you are under 13 years of age you may read this message board, but you may not participate. Here are the full legal terms you agree to by using this comment form.

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they've been approved.


Required, will not be published

Browse All Photos »