3.8 min readBy Published On: May 24th, 2024Categories: Features5 Comments on Beach Etiquette 2024

Just a few short years ago (ok, fine, more like a few short decades ago, but when you get old, you round down), I would head down to M St Beach with a Jackie Collins novel and be one of three people at the beach…the other two might be a couple on crutches engaged in sensual massage.  I didn’t really have to worry about anyone else and could do pretty much as I pleased because a couple navigating sensual massage with crutches had bigger fish to fry than little old me.  Oh, how times have changed.  The beaches in Southie have gone from underused oases to some of the best and cleanest in the country and hence some of the most crowded.  Now, for the record, I am not complaining.  I’m glad our beaches are being used and that people of all ages are enjoying them, BUT when beaches are more crowded, your etiquette game needs to be on point, and some of ya’ll need help.  And since I am nothing if not a servant of the people, I am here to help…so here are my beach etiquette tips!

Location is everything.  As the beaches get more crowded, there’s less space for each of us; it’s just science.  But you really shouldn’t just plop down right on top of a stranger.  Give people room to breathe, please.

Watch the blowback.  You’re at the beach, there’s sand, I get it, but watch where you kick that stuff up.  Is there anything worse than when someone shakes the sand off their towel and into your face?  No, no, there isn’t.

Don’t feed the birds.  Feeding the birds should be punishable by firing squad, and I’ll fight anyone who disagrees.

Come get your children please.  Newsflash – no one sitting near your group wants to play with your kid.  Actually no one even in your group wants to play with your kid, so don’t let your kiddo strong-arm strangers into building a sandcastle or letting them play cornhole.  Nobody wants to be the jerk who tell a kid they don’t want to play with them, so control your rug rat before it gets there.  Also maybe keep an eye on the wee ones in the water because they’re giving everyone anxiety.  Ok maybe not everyone but little kids playing unsupervised by the water will be what eventually gives me a heart attack.

Watch your god damn mouth.  I say this as someone with a slight salty vocabulary, but watch your mother-f*cking mouth.  There are people of all ages and language tolerance levels at the beach, so be conscious of those around you.

Your music is terrible.  Taste in beach music is very personal and subjective, no one wants someone else’s music blaring in their ear.  Keep your tunes below a dull roar please.  If you promise not to blast your country Sunday funday playlist I’ll promise not to blast my Barry Manilow deep cuts (#fanilow).

Pick up your trash.  Is this common sense?  Yes, of course.  Is common sense all that common?  Alas, it is not.  I am absolutely horrified by how some of you leave the beach.  You know better, shame on you!  Pick up your garbage, you garbage person!  I’ll give you that the city of Boston (or the state, I have no idea who’s in charge) needs to do a better job with the barrels, but do us all a solid and start packing a trash bag with your beach gear.

It’s not all fun and games.  The beach is fun!  You want to eat fun food, drink fun drinks, tell fun stories, and play fun games!  But if you need to jump over a random stranger to play ultimate Frisbee or have hit the same person three times with a football, maybe don’t with the games this time.  Just a suggestion.

I’m a little worried I’m coming off as a giant grump when really I’m more of a lovable curmudgeon.  I swear I’m a good time!  I just think when we share a common space we need to be aware, and dare I say respectful of the people around us.  The beach is no different.  People just want to relax and have a good time, and that can be hard to do when the people two feet away are being jackasses.  So I guess just don’t be a jackass, happy beaching!


  1. Dennis Mahoney May 27, 2024 at 7:30 am - Reply

    Who is this? She speaks about how NOBODY (!) wants to play with, splash around , build sandcastles, feed the birds, this one does have merit or supervise kids.
    Before I go on let me say that every kid has at least 2 or 3 sets of eyes on them constantly .Now M St. Beach is a gathering for younger residents so be it. So they don’t want to be around kids but by the same token we don’t want our kids around a huge crowd of people swearing, drinking or smoking pot. By the way I noticed nothing said about alcohol being delivered in front of the State Police, but I digress. Families now mostly go to the Lagoon anyway. There are some single people, no children, there as well. However 9 times out of 10 those singles approach the kids and ask them if they want to play, build a sandcastle or splash in the water. I guarantee you that a parent, babysitter, guardian whatever has never approached a group of single and asked them to watch/play with their kids.
    I guess all in all I’m saying is Miss Clownshoe should stop acting like a spokesperson for hundreds of people and stick to writing about what she actually knows about……Jackie Collin’s maybe ?

  2. Kenny May 27, 2024 at 3:21 pm - Reply

    Maureen please remember Cecilia as a Mst. beach bum

    • Brendan May 30, 2024 at 5:31 pm - Reply

      You are an idiot-Heather hits it right and survivor from Southie, so dontvsctvlikrvdhrchss no basis for her opinion. It sounds like you are a clown who wouldn’t pay for a babysitter snd think that if someone did new to Southie, they fhouldnt be allowed. I grew up in Southie xbd think it’s 1000 time better with the newer arrivals. Watch your kids-jerk.

  3. Karen Morris May 30, 2024 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    There is a nice beach at the community center and great for children . Please Pick up the Glass on the beach .

  4. Michael June 1, 2024 at 12:44 pm - Reply

    Perhaps you could add other etiquettes.

    Last summer a man was wearing a pink thong , separate piece for his penis;with a perpetual heart on. He then layed down next to his boyfriend on full display. He also had while going to and from the ocean.

    Thank God there were no children close bye.

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