Where Were You During the ‘Summer of Love’ in Ocean Beach in 1967?

by on July 11, 2017 · 8 comments

in Ocean Beach

Hey, you boomers! Where were you during the “Summer of Love” in Ocean Beach in 1967?

The OB Rag wants to know.

We’re complying a bunch of memories from those who remember the old days of 1967 when the counter-culture blew up and all of a sudden, young people were becoming hippies across the nation.  And we’ll print up those responses that will explain it all. Or at least those that describe what happened.

About 3 weeks ago, we asked a similar question of our readers – and we received a bag of responses.  Here’s part of what we said then:

Were you in or near OB during the “Summer of Love” in 1967?

If so, we’re looking for you and we’d like to hear your stories of those days. The OB Rag is looking for folks who were in OB – or San Diego – during the famous summer 50 years ago and can share what they experienced during that fabled summer.

The summer of 1967 certainly changed OB. Music, clothing, fads, drugs and a new rebelliousness among the young were the hallmarks of the emerging counter-culture which burst upon the national – and international – scene when the fabled Summer hit. And OB was right there – it became the hippie capital of San Diego, while San Francisco became the hippie capital of the nation. …

But what happened in OB? And San Diego? We’d like to find people who remember those days. We’ll be reaching out to people who potentially were in town. We’ve already contacted a few and over the next couple of weeks, expect to be sharing what they tell us about the Summer of 1967.

If you were there – or know someone who was – contact us via our email  :  obragblog@gmail.com or leave a  message in the comments section below.

OB certainly had its share of hippies. [See my] earlier post about “Hippie Life in OB“.

Here’s some of the responses (we’ll be posting more over the next couple of weeks):

Doug Blackwood remembers the summer of ’67. He told us:

Oh yeah I was commuting from PB to OB for better waves: Avalanche, middles, jetty & the pier. Many great house parties, real honest people & cheep cheep rent. My 2 bedroom OB house (still standing) with a front & back yard, driveway and garage for $125.00 a month. Greed was frowned upon!

Judy Dibble was living in OB that summer:

I was 20 years old, living in OB and going to State. We tie-dyed various garments in a tub that my grandmother had used for washing cloths. And yes we smoked a couple of doobies while grooving to the music of the day. Sing-alongs on the beach accompanied by guitars and bongos.

KT Robinson remembers:

I was seven living in La Mesa. Because my parents convinced me Ocean Beach was so sketchy, it took my hip daughter coming since 2006 to tell me it’s where I belonged. Moved here 4 years ago. Looong over due. ;)
Happy to have found my spot here.

One reader sent us his thoughts:

In this time of distress we need something that can offer hope, galvanize progressives and gather the tribes. Despite how bleak 2017 looks right now, we do have a bright light on the horizon in the Summer of Love 50th Anniversary.

 As an artist/writer/producer/ activist let me ask you this: What if we teamed up on a new blog/report commemorating the occasion as a way to get perspective on our current situation? And, what if we drive home the point by staging newsworthy “happenings” to coincide with key historical dates?

OB was, after all, known as San Diego’s Haight. While the city of San Francisco attempts to cash in on the nostalgia, why don’t we in OB herald a real Second Coming? If there ever was a time to reignite the late ’60’s Love Revolution fire, it’s now. If there ever was a place to do it, it’s no doubt OB.


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris July 11, 2017 at 3:05 pm

Being at the very end of the boomer period I was in kindergarten at Fuerte Elementary school in El Cajon.


rick callejon July 11, 2017 at 3:16 pm

I was about to enter high school in the suburban SF Bay Area. My mother, a San Francisco native, drove us through the Haight. We laughed when we saw a long-haired mail carrier. Phil Lesh of the Grateful Dead had carried mail years earlier for USPS in SF. He got fired when he declined to cut his hair.


Bruce Coons July 11, 2017 at 8:21 pm

I was in OB on the beach most of the summer except when we went to the Love-in in Balboa Park, concerts at Balboa Stadium and the big peace march downtown. There were war protests in OB then and I remember one where the police started at the North end of the beach and cleared us all off the beach all the way to Newport in the best storm trooper style. I still remember their black boots glistening in the Summer Sun.


stu July 12, 2017 at 7:47 am

I wasn’t near the west coast and thought San Diego was just a Navy town but I knew SF was the hippie capital.
I did spend the summer of love in Provincetown on the tip of Cape Cod. P-town was the center of the east coast beatnik scene. It was a very hip place or so I was told There was also much time spent in Cambridge and Boston.


Geoff Page July 12, 2017 at 9:56 am

My dad was in the Navy and we moved to Coronado in the winter of 1965. Sadly, we left CA in June of 1966 and were stationed back on the East coast as my dad was assigned to the Pentagon. I have forever regretted that we left when we did. I went to a good public high school in Arlington, VA where they did educate us on the Vietnam War but I really didn’t know anything about 1967 and what I missed until years later. I would have loved to have been in OB at that time, it would have fit me to a “T.” I envy anyone who was able to experience those times. It was 11 years before I was able to get back to San Diego in 1977 and three more before I found OB. Better late than never. I now envy my children whom I have managed to raise as OB natives. Cheers to anyone who was actually here in 1967!


Frank Gormlie July 12, 2017 at 10:13 am

Any comments or descriptions or memories can be anonymous. Just send them to our email and request anonymity, obragblog@gmail.com


Jeaninne(truax) Holly December 17, 2017 at 11:14 am

My husband Bill Holly was one of the hoodlum surfer guys who had the water balloon launcher on the bluff overlooking the o b parking lot. The people coming around the curve from Abbott to Newport had a wet surprise!! Still sounds fun!

I remember the first Black shop. It was in the building where the Calypso bar was. Simple times.


Ol OB Hippie December 18, 2017 at 7:38 pm

That is sooo cool. Did your hoodlum surfer dude use medical rubber hose like we used to?


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