When you are driving into Laguna Beach on PCH you may notice a statue of a man where Park Avenue and Forest Avenue intersect with PCH. Another statue welcomes you at The Old Pottery Place on PCH. Locals know him as ‘The Greeter’ and you may be surprised to learn that there is a real man and a story behind the statue.
The man is Eiler Larsen born March 27, 1890, in Denmark. In the mid thirties Eiler migrated from the East coast to San Francisco. It was there that he heard about Laguna Beach’s Pageant of the Masters. His friends thought he would be a perfect fit for the production, and he was. He was cast for ‘The Last Supper’ scene, by Leonardo da Vinci. After, Larsen made Laguna Beach his permanent home.
Although, Larsen didn’t make much money, he found pleasure in buying gifts for his friends and candy for children. He also took to welcoming weary travelers into the city with a wave and a big shout, “h-e-l-l-o!” It was in 1963, the City of Laguna Beach made Larsen’s gratitude a manner of public record and he was ceremoniously proclaimed the Official Greeter of Laguna Beach.
When you are downtown in Laguna Beach be sure to take a minute and grab a picture with The Greeter, Eiler Larsen. Then pop over to C’est La Vie Restaurant for French cuisine. Laguna Beach has nearly every cuisine from around the world, and who can pass up crepes, quiche or champagne? Not me!
If it’s a warm summer day, be sure to ask to be seated on their patio and you’ll be able to take in views of Main Beach. What C’est La Vie is known for, aretheir baked goods and desserts. You can choose from what seems like an endless array of delicate and scrumptious creations…Layer cake, tiramisu, cheesecake, fruit tarts, cream Brule, and éclairs. On your way out stop by the bakery counter and take some cookies to-go to enjoy while you stroll through the downtown shops.
By Anne-Marie S.