37th Annual OB Holiday Parade – Sat., Dec. 3rd – “The Year of the Pier”

November 29, 2016 by Staff


The 37th Annual OB Holiday Parade will take place on Saturday, December 3rd, 2016 at 5:05pm (OB time), and it will feature over 100 entries celebrating Ocean Beach’s unique vibe.

This year’s theme is “The Year of the Pier with Holiday Cheer – Celebrating 50 Years!”

The OB Town Council is one of the principle sponsors of the parade. Here is what they say on their website:

For over 30 years, our quaint little surfing village of Ocean Beach has hosted one of the best Holiday Parades in SoCal. On Saturday, December 3rd, Newport Avenue is lined with colorful OBceans and visitors all eagerly awaiting the big event to commence at 5:05pm.

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Justice Can’t Wait – Rally and March Downtown San Diego – Tues. Nov. 29th

November 28, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


The Nov.29th Justice Can’t Wait rally and march in downtown San Diego is on for Tuesday, November 29th, from 5 pm to 7:30pm.

From one of several facebook pages on the event, we find:

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How We Can Defend the Ocean now that Trump Will Be at the Helm of the Ship of State

November 22, 2016 by Source

By David Helvarg / Blue Frontier

Like a rogue wave the Election Day victory of Donald Trump for President has left about half the nation stunned and the other half giddy. Among those most worried – environmentalists who are girding for a long series of battles around climate and expecting attacks on keystone agencies, executive orders and legislation including pollution emission standards, the Clean Water Act and the EPA.

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Willie’s Shoe Shine Shack to Be Moved Wed Morning – GoFundMe Set Up

November 22, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Willie’s Shoe Shine Shack to Be Moved Wed Morning – GoFundMe Set Up

It looks like Willie’s Shoe Shine Shack will be moving one way or the other Wednesday morning – the 23rd. Probably early.

The folks who have stepped up to help Willie, who is 78, deal with the move and changes are trying to get free help in the move – otherwise they’ll pay.

Here’s the Gofundme page set up for Willie – as of today, it’s raised $2,275.

There’s been some talk about boycotting the new landlord’s other OB businesses in response to his efforts to get Willie to remove the building.

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Map of Ocean Beach’s New Heritage Torrey Pines

November 22, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


Yesterday, Kris Schlech wrote a short post about how Ocean Beach just gained 8 new Heritage Trees – all Torrey Pines.

This was due to the sustained efforts of Friends of Peninsula Trees – the group that formed to fight the removal of a huge Torrey Pine on Saratoga Avenue last summer.

Torrey pines – and other trees for that matter – that have gained Heritage Tree designation have special protections and if the city or its contractor deem a Heritage Tree must be removed, they must exercise other mitigation efforts before chopping.

So, here is a map of OB’s new Torrey Pine Heritage Trees.

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San Diego DA’s Unjust Asset Forfeiture Fight Over Family’s Savings Continues

November 22, 2016 by Source

James Slatic. asset Forfeiture victim Photo via Americans for Safe Access

By Terrie BestSan Diego Americans for Safe Access

The James Slatic family sat in San Diego Civil court Monday, November 15th, along with an impressive group of supporters, to listen to testimony on just why The San Diego District Attorney confiscated each of the family of four’s checking and savings accounts and has refused to give the funds back in the absence of criminal behavior.

It was tough to understand government seizing money from two young girls and their parents and as the testimony unfolded it became clear no financial investigation was conducted either. Still, anti-cannabis Judge Jay Bloom ruled against the family and the case will now be moving up to a higher court.

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It Really Is the End of the World as We Know It

November 21, 2016 by Jim Miller

End of the World

Physics Doesn’t Care About Politics or Whether Anyone Believes in Science

By Jim Miller

A little less than two weeks before the election, the Guardian was one of the only media outlets to note the release of a devastating report by the Living Planet Index that outlines how, “The number of wild animals living on Earth is set to fall by two-thirds by 2020, according to a new report, part of a mass extinction that is destroying the natural world upon which humanity depends.”

One might think that such stark news would have trickled into the Presidential race, but, given the debased nature of the contest and the pathetic state of the national corporate media, it was nowhere to be seen in the slime fest that was the 2016 election.

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8 Ocean Beach Torrey Pines Designated as Heritage Trees

November 21, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for 8 Ocean Beach Torrey Pines Designated as Heritage Trees

Update on the OB Torrey Pine Trees for November

By Kris Schlech

Save Peninsula Trees has been active this past month! We received our (official) letter from the City and eight OB Torrey pine trees have been designated as Heritage Trees. They will forevermore be identified as such on the City’s Master Tree Inventory.

There are other trees in OB we’d like to identify and nominate, but this is a wonderful start and OBceans should feel proud to be the keepers of such national treasures! We also created a flyer with loads of useful info about Torrey pines, the Green Store has copies, or ask for one digitally through

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Willie’s Shoe Shine in Ocean Beach Has to Either Be Sold or Moved Now – And Why

November 21, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Willie’s Shoe Shine in Ocean Beach Has to Either Be Sold or Moved Now – And Why

Willie’s Shoe Shine building along Newport Avenue in Ocean Beach has been forced out of its location by the new landlord. He must either sell the building or have it moved by this Wednesday, November 23rd – the day before Thanksgiving. Reportedly, he wants to sell it for $1,000. (As to why he has to move, see below for some background.)

Willie – the only African-American businessperson on Newport – has been doing business on OB’s main commercial street for nearly 50 years – first as an employee of a shoe repair shop on Newport and then later as the proprietor of his own “shop” at the corner of Newport and Cable.

Everybody knows Willie. And so, OB’s social media blew up this weekend with news that he was being forced out.

Many saw this coming. As the OB Rag reported last August:

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Police Use Water Cannons in Freezing Weather on Protesters at Standing Rock

November 21, 2016 by Source

Photo Credit: MagicZoetrope / Flickr Standing Rock

By Alexandra Rosemann / Alternet

Police used water cannons and tear gas against hundreds of Dakota Access Pipeline protesters in Cannon Ball, North Dakota, late Sunday, Nov. 20. At least one person was arrested and dozens injured.

The confrontation began at 6pm, near the encampment were the protests against the $3.8 billion pipeline have been ongoing for months. According to the Morton County Sheriff’s Department, 400 protesters attempted to cross Blackwater Bridge on state Highway 1806 after removing a burned-out truck.

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Plans and Notes on the 2 Units at Ebers and Greene Streets Project

November 18, 2016 by Source


Here are some notes on the controversial construction project at Ebers and Greene Streets, sent to us by a local observer, who also handed them to the OB Planning Board.

  • Original home for sale “2 on 1” – here’s proof that it was all listed for two units.
  • Remodel complete, new kitchen and laundry. Records show a 1200 sf home but this actually measures about 1600 sf so someone must have done an unpermitted add on. It still complies with FAR though.
  • Demo and drawings of single story home. 3 bedrooms becomes 2 plus an office. The recent connecting hallway to the other house (not shown) goes off the end of the office on the top right, and leads into the “storage” area in the garage of the 3 story unit.
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Gregory Canyon Landfill Plan Trashed – Pala Tribe Buys Land to Protect Sacred Sites and Habitat

November 18, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Gregory Canyon Landfill Plan Trashed – Pala Tribe Buys Land to Protect Sacred Sites and Habitat

By Miriam Raftery / East County Magazine

A decades-long battle over the proposed Gregory landfill has ended. Yesterday – Nov. 17- , the Pala Band of Mission Indians announced the tribe has complete purchase of more than 700 acres of the property—including most of Gregory Canyon and Gregory Mountain, a sacred site known as Chokla.

Shasta Gaughen with the Pala Indians called the news “amazing,” adding in an e-mail, ”This means that a dump in Gregory Canyon will never happen. Chokla, Medicine Rock, and other spiritual and cultural sites on the property will now be protected forever. Critical wildlife habitat, endangered species, and the San Luis Rey River will be spared the threat posed by millions of tons of polluting garbage.”

GCL, LLC retained ownership of a portion of the property but has agreed to pursue construction of residential and commercial development instead of a landfill on other portions of the property outside of the mountain and canyon.

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A Time for Resistance – Upcoming Trump Protests in San Diego and Across America

November 18, 2016 by Doug Porter

A Calendar for Those Who Are Fired Up and Ready to Go – Includes Other Local Actions

time-to-resistBy Doug Porter

While mainstream politicians and institutions may be playing ‘wait and see,’ we at the OB Rag and the San Diego Free Press believe the rest of us have but one choice: resist.

On Fridays from now on, I’ll be dedicating this space to promoting activism in the Time of Trump. My sources will be social media listings, press releases, and you.

A bit of confusion in the coming months is to be expected. Lots of people feel motivated to make their voices heard. In cases where there are competing but similar events or campaigns of the progressive persuasion, I’ll do my best to list everything.

No one event, demonstration, or political action will accomplish the task at hand, which is to resist the forces of reaction unleashed with the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States. Only a cacophony of protest about issues, not personalities will succeed.

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Tripping Down Newport Ave in Ocean Beach – What’s New?

November 17, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


By Frank Gormlie

Every so often, the OB Rag publishes an update on what’s been happening on Newport Avenue, the main commercial street in Ocean Beach. What new businesses have opened up – and what places have closed down. The following is what we found, tripping down the Ave on Wednesday, November 16th.

New Velvet Hair Lounge

Barely 2 months since it’s been open, the Velvet Hair Lounge offers a bright, very clean-looking hair-cutting shop, sandwiched next to Stuff to Puff and the tire business on the corner of Newport and Cable Street. …

Not Much Happening at OBBean

Not too far away, the future OBBean store is still closed up, and no progress apparently can be seen from its outward front.

New Acupuncture and Massage Place Soon to Open

On the bright side, there is a new acupuncture and massage storefront which looks about to open its doors, where the old videogame store was.

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Advancing Legal Medical Marijuana

November 17, 2016 by Source

Americans For Safe Access

Legal Medical MarijuanaCalifornia voters approved Proposition 64, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, by a vote of 56% to 44%. Voters in Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada also approved legalization measures. Medical cannabis had a big night, too. Voters approved or expanded medical cannabis laws in Florida, North Dakota, Arkansas and Montana.

Proposition 64 legalizes the adult use, possession and cultivation of cannabis for non-medical purposes in California. It also creates a process for licensing and regulating adult use businesses, including cultivators, product manufacturers and retailers by 2018.

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“OB Sez No to Trump” Rally Planned for End of Newport – Sat., Nov. 19th

November 16, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


OB Sez No to Trump Rally in OB

Sat., Nov. 19th – Noon
Foot of Newport

An anti-Trump rally is being planned for this Saturday, November 19th, in Ocean Beach at noon.

Folks from the Green Store and the OB Rag met and mapped out the event that will be held at the foot of Newport Avenue.

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OB Historical Society Presents: A Great Point Loma Preservationist – Lyman J. Gage

November 15, 2016 by Staff


Ocean Beach Historical Society Presents:

Lyman J. Gage… A Great Man, By John Noble

Thurs. Nov. 17, 7 pm
P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B.

Local landscape designer, John Noble, will present his program about Lyman J. Gage, the 42nd United States Secretary of the Treasury, who was an active preservationist in Point Loma – and namesake for a local street.

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Are Higher Water Bills in Ocean Beach and Point Loma Due to Loss of Water in Pipe Repairs?

November 15, 2016 by Judi Curry
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Is It All Just a Coincidence?

By Judi Curry

You can’t live in Ocean Beach/Pt Loma and not notice the continual work being done on the water pipes throughout the entire neighborhood. You can’t live in Ocean Beach/Pt. Loma and expect not to find detours where just yesterday you were able to drive right through.

You can’t live in Ocean Beach/Pt. Loma without noticing sand bags in front of drainage ditches on many of the residential streets of the area. And you can’t live in Ocean Beach/Pt Loma without noticing the huge amount of water cascading down the streets.

So is it a coincidence that many of us received water bills this week that were higher than any previous month? Is it any coincidence that those of us that have taken measures to reduce our water usage are appalled at the amount of our water bills for the months of September-November?

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Standing Rock Solidarity Action at San Diego Army Corps of Engineers – Tues., Nov. 15th

November 14, 2016 by Staff
Thumbnail image for Standing Rock Solidarity Action at San Diego Army Corps of Engineers – Tues., Nov. 15th

On Tuesday, November 15th, Native Americans, environmentalists, and nurses will stage a protest at the San Diego Army Corps of Engineers office as part of a national day of action calling on the Army Corps and President Obama to revoke permits for the Dakota Access Pipeline.

There will be speakers – including local Native American leaders who’ve traveled to Standing Rock – and music. Organizers will sign and deliver individual postcards to the Army Corps.

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Long Approval Process for New Muni Code “Correction” on Point Loma Construction Will Allow Projects that Exceed Height Limits

November 14, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Long Approval Process for New Muni Code “Correction” on Point Loma Construction Will Allow Projects that Exceed Height Limits

By Geoff Page

Well, it appears what I suspected about the City’s eagerness to add language to the Municipal Code (MC), after the debacle on Emerson and Evergreen Streets in Roseville, is true. I objected to the new MC language that the City told everyone would “correct” the deficiency in the MC that allowed a 40-foot tall building.

My objection was that this was just a maneuver on the City’s part to avoid further litigation from other projects, that the language was redundant of what the MC already says. By adding this language, the City was able to set a future date, before which any affected projects would be exempt and that is exactly what the City has done.

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Groundbreaking for People’s New Organic Cafe and Juice Bar

November 14, 2016 by Staff
Thumbnail image for Groundbreaking for People’s New Organic Cafe and Juice Bar

There was a groundbreaking event for People’s Organic Food store’s new organic cafe and juice bar on Saturday, November 12th. It will be located just east of the market, where Tiny’s bar used to stand.

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Battle Over Plaza de Panama Heats Up – Report Claimed to Reveal Naming Rights Agreement for Irwin Jacobs

November 14, 2016 by Staff


The battle over Balboa Park, the new design for the Panama bridge and the controversy over the Plaza de Panama project, is going on today, Monday, November 14th down at City Hall.

Preservationists have mobilized their forces this morning to the City Council Chambers.

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San Diego 2016 Progressive Voter Guide

November 7, 2016 by Staff


The editors of the OB Rag and the San Diego Free Press are pleased to present our 2016 General Election Progressive Voter Guide.

We believe this is a historic election, one that will set the course of the United States for decades to come. If there ever was an election where voting was important — this is it.

The candidacy of Donald Trump is no accident. It is a consequence of decades of building a constituency for a market-driven political economy by capitalizing on fear, bias, and ignorance.

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West Point Loma Apartments Sell for $2.15 Million

November 7, 2016 by Staff


Lou Hirsh at the San Diego Business Journal reported that an 8-unit apartment complex at 4774 West Point Loma Blvd just sold for $2.15 million. The large building sits on a busy street, right next to a gas station at arguably OB’s busiest intersection.

The complex was sold by Marsha Swanson of San Diego, who reportedly is its original owner, and who recently did some exterior renovations. The buyers were Neel Pujara of Carlsbad and Green Storm LLC of La Palma.

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Coastal Commission Approves SeaWorld’s New Decorations for Old Orca Tanks

November 5, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


By Frank Gormlie

On Friday, November 4th, the California Coastal Commission finally gave SeaWorld what it wanted. In what veteran San Diego Union-Tribune writer, Lori Weisberg, called an “easy approval“, the Commission okayed new decorations for its old Orca tanks.

Call them a new backdrop for the set, call them a new stage for a new Orca encounter, call them whatever – the new decor – which will include a “Northwestern” motif, complete with fake fir trees, fake waterfalls, and a fake rock fiberglass facade – will be for the patrons, the visitors – to make them feel better – it won’t be for the Orcas. They’ll still be in the same old tanks.

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OB Planners Frustrated With Lack of City Response on Ebers Project

November 4, 2016 by Frank Gormlie


Tis a sad state of affairs when citizens have to resort to legal options to force their government to enforce its own laws.

But that is what the frustrated leadership of the Ocean Beach Planning Board is advising the community to do in light of the roadblocks that are being thrown up regarding the controversial project at Ebers and Greene Streets.

At one point near the end of the Wednesday night meeting of the Board during the discussion about the project, Board member and veteran planner Craig Klein – himself a lawyer – asked:

“What is the process for citizens to compel the city to enforce its own laws?”

This came minutes after Board chair John Ambert had declared:

“The community needs to take legal action at this point. Our words seem to fall on deaf ears …”

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Hope on Wheels

November 4, 2016 by Source


By Linda Hutchison / head wind journal

A few years ago, in between jobs, I started hanging out at nearby Mission Bay during the day when I needed a break from my computer.

I’d take a beach chair or blanket, a sandwich, a notepad and pen and sit under a tree for an hour or two. Peaceful, balmy, fewer distractions than at the oceanfront beach (also nearby).

If people came along, they kept a respectful distance, cycling or strolling by on the path, arranging a lunch picnic at one of the many tables. Kayakers glided by on the glistening water.

I began to notice that several large RVs ringed the outer edges of the parking lot. How cool, I thought. What a great idea. Roll on down for the day. Bring kids or grandkids and your own kitchen. Play ball, fix whatever you want to eat whenever. Memories of my in-laws parking their RV at Disneyland so we could duck in out of the heat and then head back into the maddening crowds.

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News from Ocean Beach and Point Loma – Early November 2016

November 3, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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OB Dog Barked Every Time Trump Came on TV – Gives Owner Idea to Market Trump Dog-Chews

EPA Approves San Diego’s Recycle Plan – Pt Loma Treatment Plant Avoids Upgrade – Again

OB Man Dies in Motorcycle Crash

OB Lab Owner Concerned about Pesticides on Marijuana Products

News Blog for Point Loma Nazarene
Clean-Up on Voltaire Street – Nov. 5th

Audubon Urges Wetlands Conservation in De Anza Cove Restoration November 7th
How tall is too tall in Point Loma?

Point Loma Girl, 10, Competes on TV Cooking Show – Viewing Party Held at Raglan
Animal Rights Activists Call Navy’s Treatment of Dolphins Worse than SeaWorld

Point Loma Residents Still Upset Over FAA Changes in Airplane Departures
Homeless Serial Killer Suspect Incompetent to Stand Trial

Mission Beach Parents Receive Anon. Letter Criticizing Them for Raising Kids in “Tiny House”
Local Commercial Realty Firm Swinging Its Weight Around OB, Point Loma and Other Beaches

New Point Loma History Book Available
OB Restaurants Tapped as the “Third Space”

World Beach Games Coming to Mission Beach in 2019
$23B defense spending in San Diego County last year, report says

“Tellabration” Coming to Ocean Beach – Nov. 12th

An Appeal to Our Point Loma Friends

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The Dakota Access Pipe Line: The Latest Last Ditch Stand

November 3, 2016 by John Lawrence

Oil Corporation Tramps on Indigenous Peoples’ Rights

By John Lawrence

Dakota Access Pipe LineFinally, there is an alliance of a major group — U.S. Indians — and environmentalists who are taking a stand to prevent the furtherance of fossil fuel interests.

Bill McKibben of 350.org says we must stop now insofar as building more fossil fuel infrastructure, which is what a pipeline represents, if we are to have a hope and a prayer of saving the planet from the effects of global warming.

The Native Americans have those interests and more — they rely on clean water from the Missouri River for their lives and livelihoods. This pipeline would probably result in the pollution of the water they rely on because pipelines aren’t foolproof. They break and spew their pollution. In addition, the pipeline construction is desecrating Indian burial sites.

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Opponents of Short Term Vacation Rentals Pledge to Fight On as City Council Votes Against Clarifications to Muni Code

November 2, 2016 by Source


Statement by Save San Diego Neighborhoods

“We fight on!”

Yesterday, in a 7-2 vote the San Diego City Council declined to make edits as suggested by sitting City Attorney Goldsmith in his December, 2015 memo to the “Visitor Accommodations” ordinance (SDMC section 131.0112(a)(6)(K)).

The proposed edits were to delete the word “primarily” and to insert a definition for “visitors and tourists” to conform to the definition of “transient” used by the City Treasurer when levying Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT). TOT is presently levied on all hotels, motels and bed and breakfasts, as well as short-term rentals (STRs). Council President Lightner and Councilmember Zapf presented these edits as minor amendments which would clarify the Visitor Accommodations ordinance and facilitate enforcement.

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