OB Town Council: Ocean Beach Community Plan Is the Grand Marshall for the Holiday Parade

by on November 12, 2014 · 2 comments

in California, Civil Rights, Economy, Environment, History, Ocean Beach, Organizing

OB City Council 7-29-14 mercy crowd

OBceans react to unanimous vote by City Council to approve the OB Community Plan Update on July 26, 2014. Thanks to Mercy Baron for this great photo.

Organizers Set to Mobilize Plan Supporters for an OB Community Plan “Float”

The Ocean Beach Town Council has announced that its selection of the “Grand Marshall” for the OB Holiday Parade is the Ocean Beach Community Plan.  Every year, someone or something is awarded the exalted title. Usually it goes to a deserving community member or celebrity.

Meanwhile, organizers and supporters of the OB Community Plan are moving on plans to create a “float” in the OB Holiday Parade – set for December 6th.  Organizers met last Monday night and set the stage for their entry – which will not be an actual “float” but more like a “flotilla” of OBceans carrying one-word signs.

We don’t recall anytime in previous holiday celebrations where a non-human received the title of Grand Marshall, but with this garnishment to the document that brought the community together last summer, the OBTC is showing itself to being a real and imaginative community – and team – player.

The Community Plan just went through a vigorous and challenging update process, culminating in a petition drive with thousands of signatures against a negative ruling by the San Diego Planning Commission and a unanimous vote by the City Council in late July in support of the Plan.

The OB Community Plan has some historic restrictions on over-development, restrictions that have helped OB maintain its small town community character and allowed it not to turn into Mission Beach.

The Plan Update is not finished yet. It still must be approved by the California Coastal Commission, which is reportedly scheduled to review it at its meeting in January 2015.  Their meeting site is unknown, but it is hoped that it will be somewhere in Southern California.

By making the Community Plan – a document – and obviously not a person or celebrity – the Grand Marshall of the annual parade they sponsor, OB Town Council is doing its part in keeping the issue of the Plan alive and in front of the community. Organizers were weary that OBceans’ interest and enthusiasm for the Plan Update – illustrated by the huge turnout by residents at the City Council meeting – would wane in the intervening months between the Council action and the Coastal Commission hearing – a five month period.

Other folks are also bent on keeping the Plan issue alive. They met Monday night, Nov. 10th,  and are planning to  have a large contingent of OBceans wearing the now iconic blue T-shirt as the entry in the Parade for the Community Plan.  There won’t be a float per se but the idea is to have one hundred people with most holding a sign with one word – that describes their feelings about Ocean Beach, such as “dog-friendly” or “feisty”. (The words will be appropriate for the family-oriented parade event.)

The flotilla of sign holders will be at the very front of the Parade, after the car carrying “OB Citizen of the Year” – which is Mindy Pellissier -. It will be in the “A” section.  Supporters and friends are asked to come down to the Dog Beach Dog Wash in the days before the Parade and make signs, from 12/1 through 12/4. All sign equipment will be provided. And the night before the Parade, there will be a BYOB sign-making party at the Dog Wash, located at 4933 Voltaire.  The sign-making will be all day, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. (The OB Rag will post another announcement closer to the event itself.)

The iconic T-shirt with the expression “Keep the OBcean Attitude” is emblazoned on the front, and they are available for $5 for parade participants at the Dog Beach Dog Wash.


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Gretchen Newsom November 12, 2014 at 1:50 pm

It is indeed a bit eccentric to have the OB Community Plan – a “thing” – be the Parade Grand Marshall. But this Plan is a solid community collaboration – an OB Movement – and the OB Town Council honors the Plan and the Plan’s supporters as the Grand Marshall of the 35th Annual OB Holiday Parade…an honor that is very in tune with how wonderful, creative, and unique OB is. Congrats to all the community members that organized support for the unanimous City Council approval of our OB Community Plan – we’re looking forward to seeing you in the Parade as a sea of blue-shirted OBceans!
~Gretchen Newsom
Chair, 35th Annual OB Holiday Parade
President, OB Town Council

P.S. If you’re interested in volunteering for the Parade and getting an official Parade Volunteer T-Shirt – please sign up ASAP: http://obtowncouncil.org/ob-for-the-holidays/volunteers/


Old Hermit Dave November 17, 2014 at 7:15 pm

Nice Parade, of course it would be great to have a Parade in January 2015 for the 99th anniversary of the 1916 flood. Call it the Thank the Rainmakers Day Parade. Kept OB a laid back hippie town, NOT the the San Diego version of Anaheim.


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