Amazingly I'm just approaching my 4 year anniversary of living in NYC, and just took my first trip to the beach! I met up with my friends in the Rockaways on Saturday, which I had previously avoided because I thought it was too far away -- in that regard, I was sort of right because I had terrible train luck and it wound up taking me an hour and 40 minutes to get there. However, I am always a fan of when the subway goes above ground, and in this case it gives you an incredible view across the channel. It hardly feels like you're in the city at all.
The boardwalk has lots of great food, though we mostly camped out by the 106th St beach and the Caracas arepas stand. There was frozen sangria and $3 Brooklyn Summer Ales because it was a Brooklyn Based/ Brooklyn Brewery sponsored day of fun (see photobooth evidence above). This beach trip coincidentally comes directly before I head off to LA for the first time, where I'm sure I will have even more sand & sun-filled tales to tell.