News of Ocean Beach and Point Loma – Early Dec 2014

by on December 8, 2014 · 23 comments

in Culture, Economy, Environment, History, Ocean Beach

OB Xmas Tree 12-6-14 pj ed

The OB Christmas Tree, right after the Holiday Parade, by Patty Jones.

Point Loma Naval Engineers Build Driverless Vehicle

Recently at a test facility at Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego, a team of engineers successfully demonstrated a Reconnaissance and Detection Expendable Rover (RaDER), an autonomous – driverless – vehicle designed to keep Marines out of danger.  No  human needed.

Pt Loma Naval AutonoVehLocals Donate Christmas Tree to OB

A local couple Sal and Nancy DeMaria, donated their 1931 Star Pine to OB for its annual Christmas Tree, propped up every year at the foot of Newport. See Mercy Baron’s report from SD Reader.

OB Town Gets Shout-Out From Calif Planners for Naming OB Community Plan “Grand Marshall” of Parade

Here’s what the Calif Planning & Development Report had to say – in a back-handed way:

“Land use obsessives may or may not find it heartwarming that the Ocean Beach Town Council in San Diego County voted to designate the Ocean Beach Community Plan as grand marshal of the OB Holiday Parade.”

Support the OB Friends of the Library at the Bookstar Bookfair, Dec. 8th and 9th. 

OB Friends of the Library get a share of the proceeds from a bookfair at Bookstar on Rosecrans in Point Loma, which is still on for Dec 8th and 9th. This is ID#11401791. In the store at the cashier, or online at BN.COM/bookfairs, just give this number, and the Friends will receive a share of the proceeds. They get a larger share as the total amount increases.

Scientists Studying Ocean Storm Water from OB

Scientists from UC Berkeley, the SoCal Coastal Waters Research Project, and the Surfrider Foundation are studying water quality and potentially associated adverse health impacts like stomach flu at Tourmaline and Ocean Beach in San Diego. The researchers were able to measure water quality before, during, and after the first major rain, and numerous surfers who braved the nasty conditions to catch a few good waves and were exposed to polluted stormwater runoff agreed to participate in the study. The study will continue through this winter, which hopefully will bring more storms. LA Observer

Zapf Criticizes Harris’ Monetary Awards

In-coming District 2 councilwoman Lorie Zafp is dissing out-going Ed Harris for his spending, which includes discretionary awarding of monies to local organizations, like the OB Veterans’ Plaza.  U-T SD

OB’s Dog Beach Named As One of Top Ten Spots of Urban Run-Off

Dog Beach in Ocean Beach has been named by San Diego Coastkeeper as one of the top places for that post-storm urban run-off.  The San Diego River brings pollution from as far away as Julian.

Point Loma’s Nazarene College to Offer 4 Year Nursing Degree Via Grossmont

Nursing students at Grossmont College will be able to take classes at the El Cajon campus for four years and graduate with a degree from Point Loma Nazarene University under a deal the schools just announced. Under the terms of the four-year agreement, students who earn their associates degree at Grossmont will be able to complete their bachelor’s requirements with an additional 15 months of classes. San Diego 6

 OB Antique Mall Has Table in SD Magazine

A “Carrera marble side table from Ocean Beach Antique Mall” is a mention in the latest San Diego Magazine post  on interior design.

Local Boy – David Wells – Selling Off Rancho Santa Fe Properties

David Wells, the former Major League Baseball southpaw pitcher who grew up in Ocean Beach and who has donated land for a baseball diamond and field near Dana Jr High, is now selling off two Rancho Fe area mansions for a cool $16 million.

The listings include an approximately 9,670-square-foot Tuscan-style house on 3.8 acres overlooking the South San Diego coastline with 6 bedrooms,7 bathrooms, a home theater, billiards room, workshop and a detached guesthouse, listed in October for $7.699 million; the second home for sale, an over 12,400-square-foot Mediterranean-style house currently used as the couple’s primary home, was put on the market in May for roughly $8 million. He bought the 7 bedroom, 10 bath homet while playing for the Padres. It also has a Hard Rock Café-themed “man cave” with Mr. Wells’s guitar and music memorabilia collection – not for sale.

Wells played for 9  Major League teams, including the Toronto Blue Jays and New York Yankees, with whom he pitched a perfect game in 1998. He played his last season with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2007.  The Wall St Journal

 Local Dock Catch Totals

The San Diego Reader has a summary of dock catch totals for Dec 6th, including:

Point Loma Sportfishing 21 Anglers, 1 Boat, 2 Whitefish, 1 Sheephead, 71 Rockfish, 4 Bonito, 2 Sand Bass

Seaforth Sportfishing 85 Anglers, 4 Boats, 2 Whitefish, 5 Sheephead, 192 Rockfish, 6 Lingcod, 1 Yellowtail, 1 Vermilion Rockfish, 3 Bluefin Tuna, 263 Yellowfin Tuna, 150 Skipjack Tuna

 Thanksgiving Fire on 4700 Niagara

Just before 3am on Thanksgiving day, a car in 4700 block of Niagara caught fire and then spread to his house. Ch6News

 Sac Bee Disses OB Over Mission

In a review of the waves and culture of Mission Beach, an online column at the Sacremento Bee disses OB in the process, calling it a place with “crunchy-granola, spare-a-dollar-for-me-to-read-your-aura stuff”. Nice, sure.

The Re-alignment of North Harbor Drive

A $3.9 million project to realign North Harbor Drive near Scott Street in Point Loma got its opening groundbreaking ceremony on Dec. 3rd. The work, scheduled for completion in October, will include the addition of 130 parking spaces, a bike lane, and median and landscape improvements. A traffic-light-controlled pedestrian crossing is planned for the middle of the block. The road is near America’s Cup Harbor, a couple of hotels and Fisherman’s Landing. Times of San Diego

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Geoff Page December 8, 2014 at 1:13 pm

When are we going to stop killing magnificent trees for this purpose? That was a big, healthy tree that had no good reason to be sacrificed. I think this practice is ridiculous.


cc December 8, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Generally they need to be removed for a purpose, not this year apparently.


Geoff Page December 8, 2014 at 3:17 pm

I’ve heard this before and it is the best answer to give in the face of this criticism.


cc December 9, 2014 at 7:12 am

I must admit I only followed starting last year when the tree was going to be removed no matter what. But yea it does feel a bit strange to me that they cut down a perfectly healthy tree for this.


OB Mercy December 8, 2014 at 5:25 pm

Apparently the latest owners of the house that the tree came from, didn’t know the tree was planted in 1960, not 1931. If you go to my story in the Reader which the Rag linked to above, you will see the post of the guy who grew up in that house and even though he wasn’t thrilled the tree was cut down that his grandfather planted, he was glad to see it go for the cause it did, to the town of OB.


Geoff Page December 8, 2014 at 5:53 pm

I guess I just don’t agree that killing a big, beautiful tree went for a good cause. I don’t think OB would want to be thought of as a place where we kill 54-year-old trees for a short holiday.


OB Mercy December 8, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Geoff, I have to admit I think the same way. They call us tree huggers. I’m ok with that. In fact, it is a big reason that where the tree comes from is a big secret. They don’t want people knocking on their doors asking them to please not cut it down.

But I thought your second sentence was kinda funny because, obviously, OB doesn’t think of it like that. They do it for the joy that most of the locals and visitors feel when they see the tree. It’s been going on for 35 years, it ain’t gonna stop now.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 8:36 am

I’m fine with being called a tree hugger as well, OB Mercy. Trees are living things, we kill enough living things because we have to, killing them for holiday sport is just wrong.

As for your observation that OB doesn’t think of it like that, I would tend to disagree as we can see by some of these posts.


bodysurferbob December 8, 2014 at 8:24 pm

if this is what you landlubbers want – no real tree killed for ob newport – then you have to start now and get people behind the idea, work with the obtc, find an alterntive. the town council found an alternative to the marshmellow wars, they can find something to replace the killing of a live tree just for a couple of weeks. i dont care if the couple just wanted to donate it – why kill a tree that is over 80 years old just for a community that is upposed to be eco-friendly?


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 8:46 am

Not sure who the landlubber comment was directed at but that isn’t me.

The alternative? How about no tree and just enjoy the decorations? Why do we, why does anyone, need a tree?


Jon December 8, 2014 at 8:47 pm

Same misguided frustrations every year. Nobody is out looking for 80- year old trees to kill in order to place them in the sand. Stop saying that. It isn’t true. I don’t wanna see old trees cut down just as much as the next guy, but saying the purpose for cutting the tree down is to put it in the sand by the pier is just false.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 8:49 am

Well. Jon, maybe you should read the article. The tree owners said there was nothing wrong with it, they just wanted to donate it. To put in the sand. By the pier. For a few weeks before it goes to Miramar.

One person’s misguided frustration is another person’s real concern. Every time we cut down a tree in Pt. Loma or OB, we lose something precious.


Rufus December 9, 2014 at 5:35 am

LMAO at people who complain about cutting down a tree yet they live in a wooden houses.

And as far as the SacBee dissing OB, fine with me. We don’t need the world singing our praises otherwise we’ll be overrun with kooks looking to gentrify our laid back neighborhood.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 8:52 am

Rufus, it seems you have missed the point. I have nothing against wood. Trees raised on a Christmas tree farm and cut down for the holiday are not the problem. Harvesting trees responsibly for our use is not the problem. Cutting down a big, beautiful tree that has graced the Peninsula for 54-years for the sole purpose of a short holiday celebration, that is another matter.


Rufus December 9, 2014 at 3:22 pm

Geoff…OB of 100+ years ago was a dusty peninsula covered with sage brush and other bushes that stood no more than 6′ tall. I think we’re doing OK in the tree department. Just sayin’.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 3:34 pm

And people planted trees over that 100-year period and turned the dusty peninsula covered with sage brush into a beautiful place with many tall gorgeous trees. So do you want to undo all of that and return to a dusty peninsula all in the name of a short holiday? I don’t. Following that reasoning then, why don’t we cut down the mighty Torrey Pine at the end of my street and use that next, it’s quite a bit over 6′ tall.

My point is that many trees have to come down at times, usually because they are causing problems in some way. We lose enough like that and those losses are unfortunate and inevitable. Why do we have to reduce our valuable tree population for something so transitory as a brief holiday? If there has to be a tree, why not put a live one in place and celebrate its life and the holidays every year? Take a good look at that tree, it was a healthy, living thing that is now a corpse.


Jon December 9, 2014 at 9:53 am

Yeah geoff, I read the article. Thanks. The homeowners considered it a nuisance and wanted it removed and donated to the community. You can argue that the homeowners should just deal with it and not remove the tree, and I’ll even agree with you. But you shouldn’t imply the sole reason trees get removed is to stick them in the sand for the holiday. I don’t believe that’s accurate. You’re overall tone regarding this tells me you’ll continue to disagree. Whatever. That’s your right. Good luck.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 10:07 am


Here is the quote from the homeowners from OB Mercy’s referenced article in the Reader:

Usually, homeowners donate a tree because the roots are undermining their house, but Sal told me, “Nope, no problem with the roots. We just wanted to donate the tree to the community.”

I rest my case.


Jon December 9, 2014 at 10:50 am

Oh yeah, you’re right. OB just looks for old trees to cut cut down to piss you off. Or are you leaving out their complaints about it getting toilet papered, etc… I’m sure there’s more to that brief Reader story. All I’m saying is I think you’re misguided by implying the sole reason trees are cut down is for that purpose. I am Not saying that toilet papering a tree is a valid reason to cut it down.

Just for giggles lets play out that conversation with the property owner:

Property owner: “this tree gets toilet papered and it’s too big. We want to cut it down and donate it to the OB tree fest.”
OB: “that’s a terrible reason to cut down a tree! We won’t take it!”
Property owner: “ok, then it’s coming down and going to the mill.”
OB: “Well alright then. At least we kept Geoff happy.”

Anyway, if it’s gonna make you feel better dude… You’re right, I’m wrong. Glad to hear your case is rested. You’re exhausting.


Geoff Page December 9, 2014 at 11:16 am

It is always interesting to see how people react when they realize they made a mistake. Some people are gracious and admit the mistake. Other people believe a good defense is to go on the offensive as if that will erase the error.

“I’m sure there’s more to that brief Reader story.” What makes you sure? Do you have other information you haven’t provided? I doubt it.

“All I’m saying is I think you’re misguided by implying the sole reason trees are cut down is for that purpose. ” I’m not implying anything. I read the Reader story and that was what it said. Period.

Your bit of fantasy conversation isn’t based on any facts, the owners did not say they were going to cut it down anyway.

It doesn’t make me feel better that I was correct, I was just pointing out that you were in error in what you wrote.

And, if I am too “exhausting” for you, why don’t you take a rest. You don’t agree with my opinion, I get it, that’s your right. Perhaps you are expending too much energy in a personal attack on someone who simply disagrees with you.


Jon December 9, 2014 at 11:36 am

Can you hear my eyes rolling geoff? Not sure why I even decided to reply on this thread. I knew it was a bad idea because you win every argument. Even when the person you’re arguing with tries to agree with you in some way. I’m Done. Glad I interested you. I’m sure there’s much more important things I should be doing with my time. Keep fighting the good fight bud.


OB Dude December 9, 2014 at 12:03 pm

It’s their tree and they can do what they like with it. IMO

Thank you for DeMaria’s for donating your tree to Ocean Beach. I bet you have your reasons for letting it go after enjoying it for all the years,. Now, there are many people who visit the end of Newport who gaze upon that tree and it brings them job. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Enjoy the season of giving and goodwill.

There are plenty of places to plant trees in OB. How about a whole field of star pines on Robb Field which is suppose to be a passive park? OB could grow the Holiday tree for years to come.


OB Dude December 9, 2014 at 12:04 pm

oops JOY not JOB :-)


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