Ocean Beach Planners Agenda for Wed., April 1 – New Officers, a South OB Crosswalk and the One Paseo Project

March 31, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The OB Planning Board will hold its monthly meeting Wednesday night, April 1st, over at the OB Rec Center. The Center is located at 4726 Santa Monica Avenue and the meeting starts sharply at 6pm.

The Board needs to certify its recent election, elect new officers and review an update on the “Crosswalk Project”. And there will be a “forum” on the very controversial One Paseo Project.

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Friends of OB Library Dedicate Their Bench

March 30, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The bench in front of the OB Library is now “officially” open to be used. It was dedicated Saturday, March 28 by the Friends of the OB Library in the midst of their book sale.

A crowd formed as Judy Collier, the president of the Friends, called people to gather at the bench. She made some remarks and introduced a few of the people that have helped the bench become a reality.

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Hundreds Turn Out for Mike Hardin Memorial in Petco Park

March 30, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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It was a hot Saturday, but hundreds of Mike Hardin well-wishers turned out for his memorial at Petco’s Park in a Park in downtown San Diego. Music was played and videos and stills from Mike “Bossman”‘s life were on the big screen in front of the crowd.

Many OBceans were there but so were many others, people whom Mike had touched over the years with his iconic hamburger joint, Hodad’s – strangers, friends and their families, other chefs. There must have 350 in the chairs and sitting on the grass at the small park next to the Padres baseball stadium.

Guy Fieri of Food Network – the man who made Mike famous – and his hamburger one of the nation’s top 5 – was very eloquent in describing probably the most famous OBcean in modern history.

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March 28, 1971 – The Most Violent Day in Ocean Beach History

March 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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44th Anniversary of Collier Park Riot Spurs Comparisons

The hour was getting late at the meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council Board of Directors. It was January 21st in the year 1971 – 44 years ago. The hour was getting late but the meeting was lively as the topic was hot.

The subject was whether the City of San Diego would sell off to developers a large portion of land in northeast Ocean Beach called “Collier West” – so named because it was the western section of a much larger piece of property donated to the public by David C Collier – the “Father of Ocean Beach”.

A older male member of the Board was getting agitated – he started to shake as he half stood up to speak. It was Ray Perine, a slightly balding middle-aged and well-known grassroots activist. Not a radical by any means, Ray cleared his throat.

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OB Town Council Pushed to Join Climate Action Campaign

March 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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All eyes were on Nicole Capretz last night at the monthly Ocean Beach Town Council meeting. She was proposing that the Council join the Climate Action Campaign that she helped found and ensure that the City of San Diego lives up to its commitments under the Mayor’s new climate action plan.

Capretz addressed the Board and the audience of near 60 people on the topic of climate change, the City’s plan, and her group’s efforts to hold local government to be responsive, in terms of creating a viable, legally-binding roadmap for San Diego to follow.

“There is no greater risk to the human race,” she said, “than climate change.” Capretz has been a veteran of City Hall. She years ago, worked for Councilwoman Donna Frye, and more recently for interim Mayor Todd Gloria. She added:

The quality of life will be okay for current generations, but not for the next generations.

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Talk About a Crack in the Sidewalk – Sunset Cliffs’ Walkways Are A-Buckling

March 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Enough of us have finally taken notice to mention it. Talk about a crack in your local sidewalk – you ain’t got nothing compared to this.

Check it out.

The concrete walkway at the bottom of Sunset Cliffs just north of Orchard Street has taken a beating from Mother Nature and the sidewalk is ‘a-buckling’.

This was all very predictable.

That is, it is predictable that attempts by government and private property owners along the famous and beautiful Sunset Cliffs to corral nature, prevent erosion and stop the gravitational, tidal and wind forces from doing their thing are bound to fail – eventually.

Also, we the citizens of a City like ours with its dismal history of maintaining of public access-ways shouldn’t be too surprised when nature and the lack of City attention take their toll.

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Midway Area Gets a “Legal” Pot Dispensary

March 25, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Point Loma Peninsula has a pot shop! The San Diego Planning Commission on March 19th voted 4 to 2 to approve a medical marijuana dispensary in the Midway area of the Point.

The Point Loma Patients Cooperative is the 4th such dispensary to be allowed under San Diego’s stringent requirements. It’s located at 3452 Hancock Street.

The other dispensaries allowed include an Otay Mesa storefront that just opened last week, and 2 more – one in San Ysidro and the other in Kearny Mesa. Both are are expected to open this spring. Allegedly, the City is supposed to allow a total of 36 dispensaries within city boundaries.

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Public Memorial Celebration at Petco Park for Hodad’s Mike Hardin

March 24, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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This Saturday, March 28th, a public memorial and celebration of Mike Hardin’s life will be held at Petco’s “Park in the Park”. Hardin is mostly associated with his infamous Hodad’s OB burger joint.

His eatery was showcased on national television foodie shows, such as the features on the popular TV show, “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” hosted by Guy Fieri.

Hardin died of a heart attack in early February.

The “Celebration of Life” event at Petco Park’s Park in the Park in downtown San Diego runs from 11:11 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.

Saturday’s tribute is being organized by Hardin’s family, employees and friends. The pubic is invited – it’s free to attend and, according to organizers, “open to everyone who ever knew Mike or knew his burgers.”

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Witnesses and Photos Sought of Ocean Beach’s ‘Most Violent Day’ in History

March 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

OB Collier-Pk-riot-2-edIt’s coming up on the 44th anniversary of the most violent day in the history of Ocean Beach – the March 28, 1971 Collier Park Riot. After San Diego police charged a peaceful gathering of hundreds of OBceans, young people and students, street fighting between cops and civilians broke out – and for hours a riot raged in north OB, from what today is Collier Park, all the way to the beach, about a mile.

It was the day that Ocean Beach was – in a real sense – like Ferguson, Missouri.

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“OB Gothic” Photo Contest Extended to ‘OB Exposed’ May 22nd

March 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Due to its interest, the OB Rag’s “OB Gothic” photo contest has been extended all the way to May, to the OB Historical Society’s annual photo shindig and contest, “OB EXPOSED! – Photographic Impressions of OB and PL” – held this year on May 22nd.

You may recall that inspired by the OB Historical Society’s presentation on OB’s cottages back in February, the OB Rag began a photo contest of the best “OB Gothic” image earlier this month.

The only rule is that the photo be taken in Ocean Beach.

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Climate Action – or Inaction – at Point Loma Democratic Club Meeting – March 22

March 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The March meeting meeting of the Pt Loma Democratic Club is about climate action (or inaction) on the San Diego region generally and the beach areas in particular. The PL Dems will be hosting the Climate Action Campaign organizers.

The meeting is on Sunday, March 22nd from 4:00PM – 5:30PM and will be held at the Point Loma Assembly, 3035 Talbot St, San Diego, CA 92106.

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San Diego Finally Allows 1st “Legal” Pot Shop 19 Years After California Voters Passed Measure

March 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The City of San Diego has finally allowed the opening of the City’s very first medical marijuana dispensary. (NBC7 )

This opening of the first “legal” pot shop in San Diego comes 19 years after California voters passed Prop 215, making medical marijuana legal.

And the County of San Diego has only allowed one dispensary to open to date – a storefront opened last summer in an unincorporated area outside El Cajon.

The shameful history of nearly 2 decades for both the City and County of San Diego that viewed together initiated delays, stalls, and outright resistance to the spirit of Prop 215, stands in deep contrast to the wishes of the state’s voters.

On this issue at least, the implementation of the medical marijuana law, our local governments have been very undemocratic as they have quite openly stymied what the voters, the people, wanted.

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Around the Village of Ocean Beach

March 19, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

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New and Gone Businesses and Other Observations Around Town

Occasionally, with camera in hand, we take a casual jaunt around the Village of OB, and make note of new businesses that have opened up recently, as well as businesses that are gone, and other pertinent or impertinent observations.

There’s has been some movement – although not much – at the corner of Sunset Cliffs Blvd and Voltaire Street where the new Sunset Plaza is being built. The sidewalk has been closed off, some gravel has been pored and a new mobile office is now on site. And when we paid a visit, digging and moving equipment was being delivered. Want to see where it’s all going? See this.
COME INSIDE FOR MUCH MORE ….

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The Ocean Beach Entryway Park and Robb Field Are Finally Connected

March 19, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFinally, the parks are connected!

The OB Entryway Park and Robb Field finally have no fence between them. The last obstacle – an orange plastic web fencing that had been installed where a chain-link fence once stood – has fallen apart and pedestrians and bicyclists are now moving through one park to the other.

On Wednesday, March 18, the OB Rag checked and could see that the web fencing had mostly fallen off the short metal posts. Bicycle tracks and foot prints could clearly be seen in the dirt leading from the OB Entryway into the grass in Robb Field.

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Federal Report on San Diego Police: Mediocre on Criticism – Light on Sanctions

March 18, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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DOJ Report Fails to Address Racial Profiling by San Diego Cops

A Federal report on the San Diego Police Department was just released Tuesday, March 17th, taking the Department to task on a lack of accountability for officer misconduct and a lack of adequate supervision of officers, while making 40 recommendations for improvement.

But significantly, the Department of Justice report does not address the serious claims that other recent reports have made about how the San Diego Police Department in fact practices racial profiling in its stops and searches of motorists, as well as in its shootings of civilians.

Overall, then, the Federal report is mediocre in its criticisms of the Department and light on its sanctions. No one person or officer is brought to account. No one is punished. No heads are rolling. The officer misconduct is not much more than a few bad apples tarring the reputation of a great, even “progressive” police department.

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News From Around the Ocean Beach Empire

March 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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*Man Bitten By Rattler Near Dog Beach A rattle snake bit a 30-year-old man on his right hand in Ocean Beach on Saturday afternoon, March 14th.
*Local “Boomer” Wells As Coach at Pt Loma High School Discovered by the Press

*Man Wins $450K From Settlement of Robb Field Gopher Hole Injury
A San Diego man won a $450,000 settlement this month after injuring his knee on a gopher-infested soccer field in Ocean Beach.

*Midway Area Hit and Run

*Canoe Flips in Mission Bay and Man Drowns
A 52-year-old man died Friday after the canoe he was in flipped in Mission Bay

THIS WEEK’S MEETINGS

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San Diegans Mobilize for Government Action on Climate Change

March 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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On a hot afternoon last Sunday, March 15th, 250 San Diegans rallied and marched – and called on the US government to act on the climate change crisis.

About 150 demonstrators had gathered by 2 pm at the San Diego Civic Center Plaza, as the band the Swamp Critters encouraged them through song to come out and protest. Organized by a loose coalition that involved OB’s People’s Food Store Cooperative and the OB Green Store, as well as the Sierra Club, 350.org, and a couple of Democratic clubs – from Pt Loma and La Jolla, the protest was part of a series the coalition plans leading up to next November.

After a few speakers, the group pushed out of the Plaza, down 3rd Avenue and Broadway, taking the short walk in the streets to the Federal Building. A few police cars escorted the peaceful march the few blocks that then gathered for a second rally. Once in the shade of the massive Federal Building, another band welcomed the crowd. A dozen people got up and danced to the music of Captain Viejo before a few more speakers thanked and exhorted those present to continue the struggle.

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Ben-Moshe Family Purchases ‘Newport Avenue Antiques’ Building – to Be Replaced by Wine Testing Room

March 13, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ben-Moshe family has bought yet another Newport Avenue property to add to their generous collection of downtown OB storefronts – this time, it’s the ‘Newport Avenue Antiques’ building, located at 4836 Newport. The Ben-Moshes – through their IAC Management, LLC – purchased the 7,500 square foot parcel for $1.3 million in cash.

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Excuse us as the OB Rag staff returns from our Borrego R and R

March 12, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

The OB Rag staff is just returning from a wonderful R & R out in Borrego Springs. We have to apologize to our readers as we didn’t warn anyone that we would not be publishing for several days. Okay, we’re back and we’ll share some of our pics of the desert flowers and the “Sky […]

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Ocean Beach: Support Your Community Plan – Go Vote on Tuesday, March 10

March 6, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Early next week, OBceans have a chance to show their support for the Ocean Beach Community Plan, a document that represents the blueprint for development and public facilities in OB, a plan that has been in existence for nearly 40 years, recently updated – and that has weathered an attack by the influential San Diego Planning Commission.

If you’ve followed the the twists and turns of the Community Plan Update process of last year, then you know of what I speak.

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OB Rag Sponsors “OB Gothic” Contest

March 6, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Contest Runs Until April 1st – Winner Gets Dinner for Two at Nico’s – (just kidding – it will be at one of OB’s named dinner restaurants.)

Tom and Jane Gawronski started it all. When we saw their version of the “OB Gothic” recently in a photo as part of PR for their recent presentation on OB’s historic cottages with Kathy Blavatt, a idea struck.

The Gawronskis were posing in front of one of their OB cottages with its pointed roof top in the background, with Tom holding a pitchfork and Jane in an old school apron in a simulated version of the original and totally iconic “American Gothic” by Grant Wood.

We asked ourselves – what a great pic! So, why not have the OB Rag sponsor a contest of everybody’s different versions of the original – but for Ocean Beach, – the “OB Gothic”.

The contest is on – starting today –

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OB Planners: Pipeline from Pacific Beach and Candidate Forum

March 5, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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At last night’s Ocean Beach Planning Board meeting, Wed., March 4th, the planners got an earful about a new pipeline project coming from Pacific Beach. Plus candidates running in the upcoming election on March 10th got to give a mouthful about why they’re running.

The monthly meeting got off to a slow start, with Board chair Pete Ruscitti wondering out loud whether there would even be a quorum. But the members dribbled in, the meeting began, and more slipped in during the course of the meeting until there was only one absence.

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The Origins of Institutionalized Racism – a System to Control Blacks … and Whites

February 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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100 Years Before Lexington and Concord, Bacon’s Armed Rebellion of Whites and Blacks Forced Plantation Elite to Create System of Racial Slavery

By Frank Gormlie

Since the turmoil last year in Ferguson, Missouri, swept in a new civil rights movement, once again America is faced with the reality of its system of institutionalized racism. For Americans with conscience, understanding this system is key to changing it, and it cannot be understood without understanding its origins which trail back, of course, to colonial America.

Confronting a system that predates the very formation of the Republic itself necessitates understanding its raison d’etre – its reason for being. Why is there such a system that has a solid foundation and that has existed all this time, and is so deeply ingrained? Why is there institutionalized racism? If one accepts such a premise, that there is such a thing, then the most obvious answer is that it exists to control blacks, African-Americans. And to control other minorities, Mexican-Americans, Native Americans.

Yet this system is not meant to only control blacks – and other peoples of color – but it also is meant to control white people.

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News and Notices for Ocean Beach and the Peninsula

February 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Mission Beach to Get New Lifeguard Station and Ocean Beach Doesn’t

South Mission Beach is about to get a new lifeguard station. And meanwhile, Ocean Beach continues with its own aging lifeguard tower and deteriorating restrooms. The Mission Beach Precise Planning Board was briefed on the new development at their meeting on Feb. 17. City engineer Jihad Sleiman told the group:

“The lifeguard tower was constructed in 1974 as a temporary facility. It is deteriorated, small, old and no longer serves the needs of the city lifeguards and the beach going public on this mile-long section of beach.”

He explained that the new station will have a rescue vehicle facility to store rescue craft, trucks and first-aid kits, and will also have separate men’s and women’s restrooms and a main observation tower on the third level. He called the new tower “an orientation landmark on the beach.” The total lifeguard tower replacement cost: $4.9 million. Construction is expected to start within the next few weeks and be completed by summer 2016.

The main lifeguard tower in OB is from the 1980s but is in very bad condition. The restrooms are an embarrassment. Various groups have been lobbying for its replacement for a while now. Perhaps with a new city councilperson, the efforts can be rejoined.

Robb Field Skate Park Now Is 15 years Old

The OB Robb Field Skate Park turned 15 a week ago on Thursday, Feb. 19. On Feb. 19, 2000, the park opened with a celebration with more than $25,000 in prize giveaways. And it was a dedicated group of volunteers who did the fundraising and development of the iconic skate park.They worked with then-Councilman Byron Wear and his staff. Some of the key volunteers were

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Vacation Rentals Roil Beach Neighbors – Issue to Be Taken Up by City Council

February 24, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Councilwoman Zapf to Hold Hearings in April

Neighbors of some housing units that are used as vacation rentals in the beach areas are upset. And the new city councilwoman for the district is getting an earful from residents in Pacific Beach and Mission Beach. Her office has received multiple complaints from constituents about beach homeowners who have made their homes into full-time rentals and their unruly visitors.

Not coincidentally, PB and Mission Beach are the 2 neighborhoods with the highest concentrations of Airbnb rentals. Zapf told the Voice of San Diego that she heard the concerns of residents at a recent PB town council meeting almost “near tears” in accounts of the “constant rotation of people coming and going”.

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OB Town Council Meeting on Public Safety – Wed., Feb. 25

February 24, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The February public meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council will focus on public safety with a number of community groups set to address issues such as watching out for another and creating a neighborhood watch group.

The meeting – as usual – will be held this Wednesday, February 25, in the Masonic Center- 1711 Sunset Cliffs Boulevard.

President Gretchen Newsom will gavel the meeting to order at 7 pm.

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Historic Cottages of Ocean Beach on Display – Photo Gallery

February 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Historian Kathy Blavatt and cottage-renovators Jane and Tom Gawronski gave their presentation on the historic cottages of Ocean Beach last night at the OB Historical Society’s standing-room-only monthly event.

With a great slideshow riveting the audience, Kathy led the crowd through a visual display of the wonderful cottages of the village. Many of them have taken advantage of the Mills Act – (and there is more info on it at the OB Historical Society’s website). The Mills Act gives tax advantages to home owners who are able to quality their houses as historic. The historic nature involves the exterior of the house.

Here, what follows, is a photo gallery of the slideshow

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It Was Syrian Kurd Leftists Who Kicked Islamic State Out of Kobani

February 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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In international news, the recent liberation of the Syrian city of Kobani from the control of Islamic State (ISIS) fighters by Syrian Kurd rebels was a little reported story which popped up briefly for its 15 minutes on the mainstream media roulette wheel of fame. Then it disappeared. But the under-reported little story – a story with a huge irony – deserves retelling.

The story – which can be pieced together from a number of media reports – involves the identity of the major fighting force that kicked ISIS out of Kobani, a city of 200,000 mainly ethnic Kurds in north Syria, a stone’s throw from the Turkish border.

It turns out it was a group of Syrian Kurd leftists who kicked ISIS’ ass, if you forgive the vernacular, after 4 months of intense house-to-house fighting, at times room-to-room, and pushed them out of the city entirely. It was the People’s Protection Units, a local leftist organization, and its affiliate, the Women’s Protection Units, that have collective command structures and believe in the equality of women, and – in fact – have numerous women commanders in the fighting units. (These are new wave Sixties leftists, not from the old school like China, Russia, North Korea.)

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Well-Known OB Local, Jimmy Marudas, Arrested by Police for Point Loma Stabbing

February 15, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

NEW UPDATE: Witness: Marudas out and back home by 1:30 pm

A neighbor of Jimmy Maroutes Marudas has reported that he saw Marudas out of police custody and back at his home in Ocean Beach by 1:30 pm. No more details are available, other than to say this neighbor saw Jimmy “cleaning up his garage and side walk area”.

UPDATE: See below

OCEAN BEACH – In a breaking news development, a well-known Ocean Beach local has just been arrested for the stabbing of a woman in Point Loma on Saturday.

Jimmy Marudas Maroutes, who has lived on Voltaire Street for decades, was taken away by San Diego police this morning, Sunday, Feb. 15, at approximately 10 a.m.

We spoke to Marudas’ conservator, Dan Zolezzi, by phone, and he told the OB Rag that he believed that Marudas, who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia, was arrested by police for the stabbing.

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Ocean Beach Sunday Sunset Clean-Up – Feb. 15

February 13, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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From CIS- OB – Sunday Sunset

Every Sunday locals meet up for a trash clean up. After most weekends, there have been extra guests in town and additional trash left behind. Sunday at 4:40pm – 5:30pm

The objectives are:

  • 1) Making a consistent group effort to clean up our town
  • 2) Catching an awesome sunset that you wish you got out to enjoy more often

The time of the event will be a little different each week so that we can start about 45 minutes before the sunsets.

We will meet up each week at the pier entrance at the end of Niagara Ave.

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