Ocean Beach

Ocean Beach: All Out to the City Council Hearing Today – July 29th

July 29, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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4,000 Signatures Collected in Support of OB Plan

This is the day that Ocean Beach has been waiting for – for months, and for some, they’ve been waiting for years for this day. This is the day that the San Diego City Council does a final review for approval of the OB Community Plan – recently updated.

The Council takes up the OB plan at 2 pm. Every OBcean who can is urged to attend the hearing to show support for the Plan – and everyone who attends is asked to wear blue. (Blue OB “attitude” T-shirts are available at Dog Beach Dog Wash for $10 – 4933 Voltaire.)

Over a 100 OB supporters are expected to gather – as 40 were present last month just for a continuance. Already 85 have signed up on the online facebook page.

The City Council meets at City Hall, 202 “C” Street in downtown San Diego, 92101, on the 12th floor in Council Chambers. OB

Organizers are, in addition, asking OBceans to attend a 1:30 pm “rally” downstairs at City Hall on the bottom floor outside.

Plus, organizers expect to submit approximately 4,000 signatures in support of the Ocean Beach Community Plan –

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Ocean Beach Mobilizes for City Council Show-Down on Tuesday, July 29th

July 28, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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You can tell something is happening in Ocean Beach by the number of emails fluttering around OB’s cyberspace.

For instance, the OB Town Council is sending out their email announcements calling on members of their group and supporters of their “Respect OB” campaign to attend tomorrow’s City Council hearing on the Community Plan.

The OBTC says:

Do you love Ocean Beach? Do you want to protect our small-scale character? Do you want to prevent bulky over-development?

Then heed this call to action!

Step 1: Sign the online petition to protect the small-scale character of Ocean Beach

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OB Town Council: ‘Happiness is within your reach when you live in Ocean Beach’

July 25, 2014 by Source
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By Lois Lane

Everybody was happy. The determined OB Town Council had formulated a plan that routed the forces of anarchy at the marshmallow wars on the Fourth of July. It was also awards night, where 10 lucky and deserving recipients got grants from the Town Council for their projects.

The Town Council meeting on July 23 began with congratulations all the way around for the success of their “Mallow Out” campaign. The doom-sayers who predicted riots were proved to be wrong. Reported later by the Surfrider Foundation, the trash pickup the next day was dramatically reduced from 1802 pounds of trash in 2013 to 621 this year, not all of it marshmallows, of course.

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OB Property Owner Who Swore If Granted Variances He Would Live in House – Now Advertises It as “Vacation Rental” for $2500 to $3600 per Week

July 24, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Back in 2011, a property owner on West Point Loma Avenue who while pleading for variances to build his 3-story McMansion, swore both to the OB Planning Board and to the Coastal Commission that if the variances were granted, he would live in the house as his home.

Alvin Cox swore it. So, he was granted the variances, and he built his mansion.

And now, Alvin Cox rents it out as a “vacation rental” for between $2,450 to $3,675 a week ($350 – $525 a day).

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SeaWorld Demonstration at Ski Beach – Saturday, July 26

July 24, 2014 by Staff
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Launch of Corky 2 Freedom Journey

Organizers want help to display the historic Corky Freedom Banner within view of SeaWorld San Diego, where she is the longest-captive orca, to Launch the Corky 2 Freedom Journey, a renewal of the Corky Freedom bus tour up the West Coast with Corky’s Freedom banner in 1999.

Christine Caruso, a kindergarten teacher from Seattle, has secured the huge banner handcrafted of panels contributed worldwide for the original Corky’s Journey for display along this 2014 Corky 2 Freedom Journey.

The banner will be displayed on the large grassy area between Ingraham Street and Ski Beach Boat Launch, just north of the Entrance to SeaWorld on Vacation Isle, NOT South Shores Boat Launch as originally planned, from 8am to 6pm.

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Dead Man Found at the Beach in OB

July 24, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

UPDATE: Police have confirmed a deceased man was found at the beach. There was nothing suspicious, no evidence of foul play, and the case has been referred to the Medical Examiner’s Office.

The name of the deceased: Bobbie James Stinnett.
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Was a man found dead the other day at the beach in OB? Police have confirmed it.

There was nothing in the news about it.

CAUTION: Inside photo of deceased.

On or about the 15th of this month, a man was found stretched out on the sand near the seawall at the end of Newport Avenue next to the Pier Parking lot appearing not to have any life in him. A wheel chair is near by.

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Semi-Breaking News: Mayor Faulconer Endorses Current OB Community Plan – Rejects Planning Commission’s Recommendations

July 22, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

In a “semi-breaking” news flash, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has come out and publicly endorsed the current OB Community Plan – the Plan that is being supported by every group in the community and thousands of its residents.

The U-T reported today – July 22 – that “Faulconer er said through a spokesman this week that he prefers reverting back to the previous version of the plan, which strongly discourages city officials from allowing exceptions to the community’s strict density limits.”

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Special Meeting of OB Planning Board – Wed., July 23

July 22, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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There will be a Special Meeting of the Ocean Beach Planning Board this Wednesday, July 23rd. The meeting is called to have the Board formally take up the issue of the recommendations made by the staff of the California Coastal Commission to the OB Community Plan, being considered by the City Council on July 29th. … As per usual, the Board meets at the OB Rec Center, 4726 Santa Monica Avenue at 6pm sharp.

Reps from the Update committee and city planning staff will present the Board with the Coastal Commission’s proposed revisions, staff response, and how the update committee views them.

Also on deck is a proposed residential project at 2143 Bacon Street. The owner has requested that the Board give him feedback to his proposal.

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News and Goings On Around OB and the Peninsula

July 22, 2014 by Staff
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* Mariscos Wagon Returns to OB From the looks of it, the Mariscos Wagon truck has returned to OB, and was seen in the parking lot of ….

* Disturbing Story About Locals Vandalizing Visitors’ Cars Local writer Dave Rice published a disturbing story recently …

* OB Town Council to Award $6,000 in Grants – Meets Wednesday July 23

* Ed Decker Warns SeaWorld: Stop exploding fireworks over the animals

* Point Loma Democrats Sponsor “Rockin’ the Boat: The Women Activists Who Made it Happen”- July 24th

* Mercy Baron Introduces San Diego to Steampunk

* “Sound of Music” at Presbyterian Church in Point Loma

* OB Town Council Looking for a Few Good Candidates

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Momentum Continues as OB Readies for City Council Showdown on July 29th

July 21, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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The momentum in support for the Ocean Beach Community Plan continues as the showdown at the City Council hearing nears. The OB Plan is scheduled to be before the Council on Tuesday, July 29th.

It’s estimated that activists now have close to 3,500 signatures on the petitions, with at least 60% from OB or the 92107 zip code, with the remainders being residents of the city of San Diego.

This is the last full week that OBceans can sign the Petition in support of the Community Plan – and it will be available for signing during Wednesday’s Farmers Market, as well as in certain businesses. Organizers have close to 3500 signatures at this point.

This is what’s going on:

Meeting tonight – Monday, July 21 – of Sub-committee on Draft Plan, 6pm, at Dog Beach Dog Wash, located at 4933 Voltaire Street. ….

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Friends of OB Library On a Roll – Raised Nearly $1,000 Last Week

July 21, 2014 by Staff

The OB Friends of the Library are certainly on a roll! The all-volunteer group raised nearly $1,000 last week – including a $500 grant from the OB Town Council.

The Friends made $428 at their book sale last Saturday. This amount will be used to purchase books, materials, and equipment for our library.

The big news of last week was that the group will receive a $500 grant from the Ocean Beach Town Council to purchase a metal bench for the front of the library. The grant will be awarded at the next meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council on Wednesday, July 23, at 7:00 pm. at the Masonic Lodge facility, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.

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Summer gardens coming on strong in San Diego!

July 21, 2014 by Source

By Susan Taylor

artichoke flower

Hello fellow gardeners. How does your garden grow? Here in San Diego it is mid-summer with temperatures in the mid 90s, five miles in from the beach and further east. Watering enough? Perhaps you have over watered your tomato vines as I have, resulting in way more vine than fruit. Might be time to fertilize your beds with an organic fertilizer or fish emulsion. If you have garden veggies that are looking stressed from the heat and are not productive, do pull them out—there’s time to re-plant beans, squash, basil and other herbs.

In San Diego it is still too early for fall planting, let’s hang back a bit. If you have stone fruits they should be ripening nicely and good luck with keeping the birds from getting their fair share! This wasn’t a good year in my garden for …

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3 Unit Apartment on 4900 Block of West Point Loma Sold for Close to $1 Million

July 18, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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The Daily Transcript (subscription) / July 16, 2014

A 3-unit apartment on West Point Loma Avenue has just been sold for close to a million bucks. Buyer Robb A Murphy just spent $950,000 for the 2-story structure and yard at 4960-4962 W. Point Loma Blvd.

The building has 2,016 square feet total and is on a 5,624-square-foot lot (assessor’s parcel 448-230-02). Within the 3 units, there’s only four bedrooms and three bathrooms. It was built in 1953.

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The Story of How Community Planning Came to O.B.

July 17, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Staff: This is the second part of a 2-part series published this week. The series is loosely based on a talk by Frank Gormlie at the February 21, 2013 OB Historical Society monthly meeting. Here is Part 1

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The Twists and Turns of the Community Plan for OB

By Frank Gormlie

Last we left off was the Spring of 1972, when the City Planning Department canceled or postponed all its meetings or workshops on the Pen. Inc sponsored Precise Plan. This was due to the establishment of a substantial opposition to the plan, which was in the form of a damning survey of resident attitudes toward development, high-rise and density increases, and a petition calling for a building moratorium signed by thousands.

So, in the spring and summer months of 1972, the crisis was over – at least temporarily as Ocean Beach had awoken, and its residents had successfully halted the threatened onslaught of massive development.

There appeared to be a lull … for about 6 or 7 months.

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The Story of How Community Planning Came to Be in Ocean Beach – How Ocean Beach Was “Saved”

July 16, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Part 1
By Frank Gormlie

I have a story, and it’s a story about urban planning in Ocean Beach during the mid-1970′s – and how community planning came to be here in OB. It is a story about how a crisis of over-development encrusted the village of OB – and then it’s a story about how OBceans responded to that crisis – a crisis that affected much of coastal of San Diego and of the rest of the Southern California.

It’s a story how the small village blocked a plan that would have literally paved the way for the community to be redeveloped into a San Diego version of Miami Beach.

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OB’s Apple Tree Market to Re-Open in Old Bank of America Building

July 15, 2014 by Staff

He promised for quite a long time. Saad Hirmez kept telling people who asked that he planned to re-open his old Apple Tree Market in the former Bank of America building on Newport Avenue.

But people kept looking into the vacant cavern of a building at 4978 Newport but they didn’t see any signs of a market coming in.

Yet, it’s all true. Hirmez has announced that the Apple Tree will be moving into the old bank – which has had several apparitions since being a bank – a boxing ring, the Rock Scissors Paper store.

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Encinitas Bluff Owners Battle Coastal Commission Over Sea Wall Requirements

July 15, 2014 by Staff

A battle over how long a private property seawall can remain along the California coast without being re-approved by the California Coastal Commission hit the Court of Appeal – sitting in San Diego – on Monday, July 14. The case could set a huge precedent for property owners up and down the state’s fragile coast.

It all started when heavy rains in 2010 resulted in a bluff collapse up in Encinitas. The collapse also destroyed a 100-foot seawall and damaged a staircase to the beach.

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Man Falls to His Death Near Ladera Street at Sunset Cliffs

July 15, 2014 by Staff
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Another tragedy along beautiful Sunset Cliffs.

Early Tuesday morning, July 15th, a man fell to his death from falling at Sunset Cliffs. He is as yet not been identified.

CNS and SanDiego6 reported that just around 4 a.m. a friend of the victim called 911 to report the fall.

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OB Historical Society: “World War II Comes to OB” – July 17th

July 15, 2014 by Source

Ocean Beach Historical Society Presents

“WWII Comes to O.B.”

Featuring Dedi Ridenour
Thursday, July 17, 7PM
at P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B.

Be transported back to the frightening start of WWII in O.B. by hearing an Ocean Beach native Dedi Ridenour tell of hearing “WAR IS DECLARED!”,

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Reader Rant: Surf School Takes Too Much Space on Beach and in Water

July 14, 2014 by Source
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By Albert Elliott

This involves an incident I had on July 11th with Pacific Surf Schools in Ocean Beach.

I have heard people complaining about the amount of space both ON THE BEACH and IN THE WATER the surf school (Pacificsurf.org) has been taking down at the beach. On the 11th, someone had gone to the lifeguards and asked how much space the school was allowed and can they rope off the area to save it.

The lifeguards told the surf school to remove their rope.

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OB Rag and San Diego Free Press Bring Home Four Awards in Society of Professional Journalists Competition

July 14, 2014 by Staff

Writers Frank Gormlie, Doug Porter, Anna Daniels, and John Lawrence Recognized

SDFP_table_sign_2014

By Staff

On July 10 the the San Diego Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) held its annual journalism awards banquet at Bali Hai on Shelter Island. The names of all of the winners of the competition had been released in June. The list included Frank Gormlie, editor of the OB Rag, plus San Diego Free Press editors Doug Porter, Anna Daniels and weekly contributor John Lawrence. First, second and third place winners would be announced at the banquet as well as the Journalist of the Year award.

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Anger and Compassion Shown at Point Loma Library Meeting on Homeless Issues (Without the Homeless)

July 11, 2014 by Staff
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In what was billed as Councilman Ed Harris‘ “Homeless Issues Meeting”, at the Point Loma library last night, July 10, at a standing-room only crowd, angry OB and Pt Loma residents and a few businesspeople met up with folks who serve the homeless. And apparently, there were no homeless people present.

The meeting generated different accounts (the OB Rag did not have a reporter present).

OB Jess reported the following:

When I went to the forum on the homeless last night I wasn’t sure what I was getting into,

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OB Elementary Principal Reflects on His First Year

July 11, 2014 by Matthew Wood
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By Matthew Wood

It’s the middle of summer and the halls of Ocean Beach Elementary School are desolate.

The kids are long gone, having hit the beach or camp or family vacation and otherwise soaking in the three-month summer break. Teachers have been dismissed to recharge for a few student-less months.

Yet here’s principal Marco Drapeau, sitting at his desk, sifting diligently through paperwork as the rest of the world around him goofs off.

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No One Ever Charged in Attack in OB on Homeless One Year Ago

July 10, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

One year ago almost exactly, reportedly a “gang” from OB attacked several homeless men, causing serious injuries, and then also attacked some local residents. This happened on the 4900 block of Newport Avenue around 2 a.m. on July 14, 2013.

One year later, no one has ever been charged with these crimes or brought to justice. It had been alleged that an OB gang, the “OB Rats” were responsible. Here is what the OB Rag reported on July 17, 2013:

The OB Rag has heard from two independent sources that an Ocean Beach gang attacked several homeless men Sunday night, July 14th, causing at least one serious injury, and then also attacked some locals. This occurred at approximately 2 a.m. on OB’s main street, Newport Avenue.

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Sunset Cliffs Park – Is It a Park or a Parking Lot?

July 10, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Report on Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council, July 7, 2014

By Lois Lane

At the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council meeting, it was déjà vu all over again, as they say.

The public comment period of the meeting lasted over an hour, as Point Loma neighbors on Amiford, Stafford, and Cornish voiced their impatience with park graffiti, under-age drinking, any-age drug use, all accompanied by cars, noise and general disruption by the people involved (not all homeless in this case), most of it at night, with the park a regular hangout.Not to mention the off-leash dogs.

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Manhattan Beach Shark Attack Caught on Video

July 9, 2014 by Source

Here is the video of the July 6 shark attack up at Manhattan Beach.

The following is a summary from post by Jim Hoft / Gateway Pundit / July 7, 2014

A 10 foot long great white shark, hooked by a fisherman and fighting for its life, took a bite on a distance swimmer in the waters off the Manhattan Beach Pier today.

The men in the video on the Manhattan Beach Pier were fishing. Some allege that they were illegally fishing for shark and threw bloody chum in the water knowing it would attract sharks.

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Tell SeaWorld: Stop the Nightly Fireworks

July 9, 2014 by Source
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Sign the Online Petition

There’s now an online petition to get SeaWorld to put a halt to their nightly fireworks explosions. As of Wednesday morning (July 9), it had 1,754 signatures.

Here is what the website states:

STOP the Nightly Fireworks at SeaWorld

SeaWorld is damaging the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of San Diegans on a nightly basis, 90 days straight during the summer season alone. They are causing hearing damage and overall the physical well-being of the citizens of San Diego who live within a 20 mile radius or larger.

The fireworks at SeaWorld constitute animal cruelty. Dogs, cats, and other companion animals don’t understand that the terrifying loud bangs are a celebration.

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Torrey Pine on West Point Loma Coming Down

July 9, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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A Torrey Pine on private property at 5035 West Point Loma Blvd is coming down today – Wed., July 9th.

Even though Torrey Pines are a protected species, the San Diego Municipal Code does not protect them if they are on private property. Public property is another matter, as it is illegal to cut them down. Here’s what the SD Muni Code say:

§63.07 Destruction, Injury of Torrey Pines Trees — Prohibited

That it shall be unlawful for any person or persons to cut, injure or destroy any trees known as the “Pinus Torreyana” growing upon Pueblo Lots Nos. 1332, 1337 and 1338 or any other public lots or lands, belonging to and within the corporate limits of the City of San Diego.

Of course, OBceans have been planting and saving Torrey Pines for a century.

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News From Around the Surf and Sand of Ocean Beach

July 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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* No Injuries a Miracle as SUV Plows into OB Episcopal Church

A Honda Pilot SUV plowed into OB’s Episcopal Diocese

* No Arrests at July 4th BBQ for Homeless

There were no arrests of anyone at the July 4th BBQ for homeless people in Saratoga Park.

* Volunteers Needed at Farmers Market to Circulate OB Plan Petition

Volunteers are needed as OB organizers gear up for the final showdown at the City Council. They’re needed to help circulate the Petition in support of the OB Community Plan.

* Councilman Ed Harris to Hold Forum on Homelessness – Thursday July 10

Councilman Harris will host a forum at the Point Loma library Thursday evening – July 10 – at seven

… AND MORE – COME INSIDE ….

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San Diego Media Discovering the Battle Over OB’s Community Plan

July 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

Local Press Playing Catch-Up

Finally, some of San Diego’s mainstream media have discovered the battle over the Ocean Beach Community Plan. The U-T San Diego ran two versions basically of the same article by reported David Garrick on June 28 and 29, quoting Pete Ruscitti, the OB planning chair, and Gretchen Newsom, the head of the OB Town Council. Here is the lede:

O.B. RESIDENTS FIGHT SOFTER BUILDING RULES

OCEAN BEACH — Worried that a new community plan for Ocean Beach could destroy the area’s small-scale charm, more than 2,000 residents have signed petitions this month asking the city to maintain building restrictions that date back four decades.

The residents say loosening the rules would transform their community into Mission Beach or Pacific Beach, where three-story vacation rentals have replaced small cottages and other less intense housing in many areas.

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