News From Ocean Beach and Point Loma — Mid-February 2023

by on February 17, 2023 · 10 comments

in Ocean Beach

Rep. Peters Leads Partial San Diego Congressional Delegation Calling for Affordable Housing in Navy’s NAVWAR Redevelopment

On Thursday, February 16, Rep. Scott Peters’ office released a statement that he has urged Navy leaders to prioritize affordable housing in the redevelopment of the Navy’s NAVWAR site, also known as Naval Base Point Loma’s Old Town Campus (OTC). In a letter led by Rep. Peters CA-50) and signed by Reps. Sara Jacobs (CA-51), Juan Vargas (CA-52) and Mike Levin (CA-49), Peters states:

“My colleagues and I know that high housing costs throughout San Diego County hurt our constituents and hinder their life prospects,” said Rep. Peters. “We wouldn’t be doing our jobs if we didn’t recognize this opportunity within the OTC redevelopment and voice our support for housing plans that are embraced by the local community. We stand ready to partner with the Navy to maximize this land’s potential in a way that best achieves the Navy’s needs and serves San Diego.” Click here to read the full letter.

OB Town Council Election Results

OBTC election results are in, and the following board members were re-elected: Corey Bruins, Tracy Dezenzo, Gary Gartner, Stephanie Kane, and Aaron Null. New members elected include: Nate Freischlag, Mandy Havlik, and Shelly Parks.

Weekend Crime Spree in OB

KUSI reported that over the weekend of Feb. 11 in Ocean Beach, one man’s crime spree did a lot of damage. Hotel windows were broken and car windows were smashed by what witnesses claimed was one man on a mission to vandalize. The suspect was taken into custody earlier in the day for allegedly attempting to steal things from a local OB business. Later that night, the suspect allegedly took a metal baseball bat to the business and several other things in the area, including cars and the OB pier gate.

OB Man’s Car Held Hostage in Mexico

Ethan Johnson likes to work under the hood of a car. More than a year ago, he found a 1993 Honda Prelude in a junkyard and made that his next project. “Kind of a rare old car,” he said. Johnson says it took thousands of hours to get it up and running, and he documented the process on Instagram. “A lot of junkyard runs going to find and pick and choose the parts I wanted,” he said. Last Monday, Johnson says he woke up to find his car stolen. He has been contacted by a guy in Mexico and was told he could get his car back for $1,000. For more.

OB Second Most Expensive Community in Terms of Median Sale Prices of Homes Per Square Foot

The median price per square foot for a home in La Jolla, based on sales registered the week of Jan. 30, was $955, the highest in San Diego County. It was $259 more than the county median. Ocean Beach was the next most expensive community, with a median price per square foot of $919. See this.

OB’s Template Makes Top 5 List of “Best San Diego Coffeehouses for Studying”

From at Point Loma Nazarene: “Coming in with an almost perfect 4.9/5 stars on Google, The Template is a fun and quirky spot to crank out some work. You definitely will not miss finding it on the streets of Ocean Beach, with its vibrant yellow and blue building and large red lettering. The inside is just as intriguing with a mix of black and white patterns on the floors and walls, thick greenery and colorful lighting. You can take a brain break with their yoga sessions every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, or Sunday and open mic nights on Thursdays. There is even a vintage arcade game under an enormous 3-D dinosaur art piece. This place is so unique that it almost doesn’t seem real. Go check out this coffee shop for a change of pace, but make sure not to get too distracted with all its fun features.”

Sailor Ordered to Stand Trial for DUI-Caused Death at Entrance to OB

A judge on Feb. 10 ordered a sailor to stand trial for second-degree murder and vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated in the death of an Ocean Beach woman who was driving home from work in 2021. Sarah Lombardi, 54, had worked for Kansas City Barbecue for 26 years when she was killed on Dec. 20, 2021, on Interstate 8 just east of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard at 11:30 p.m. when she was hit head-on by a wrong-way driver. Attorney Onell Soto, who represents Eric Ramos Cortez, 25, made an impassioned plea to San Diego Superior Court Judge Aaron Katz not to order his client to stand trial for murder at the end of the preliminary hearing. For more.

It Was ‘Bitchin’ ‘ Growing Up in OB and Pt Loma — New Book

“Cradle of Bitchin’ explains how growing up on Point Loma, in the village of OB, instilled a sense of awe, joy, and self-confidence, emotions that served as beacons throughout life,” concludes Lee Brown on his website, “It is a story chock full of humor, successes, and blunders, not to mention quirky characters whose attire, music, and values created an infectious way of life influencing the rest of America beyond Southern California.” See more.

Two on Trial for Murder of Point Loma Man

Attorneys for two men accused of killing a Point Loma man after using a Snapchat app to sell a ghost gun have told jurors a friend of the man displayed a BB gun first, causing one of them to fire first. The murder trial opened on Feb. 6 concerning the 2020 death of Eduardo Salguero, 18, who was shot to death in his car at 6 p.m. behind the Vons supermarket at 3645 Midway Drive. Salguero answered an advertisement on Snapchat on Nov. 25, 2020, that was placed by Angel Garcia, 20, and Armando Silvestre Alvarado, 21, both of San Diego. “Angel Garcia and Armando Alvarado chose greed and violence over human life,” said Deputy District Attorney Miriam Hemming in her opening statement. Hemming said the firearm was “a bait gun which (Angel) was never going to sell” as it was “a planned robbery” to steal the money for it. The agreed-upon price was $750, she said. … The trial is expected to last several weeks. Both Garcia and Alvarado have pleaded not guilty and remain in jail on $3 million and $2 million respectively. For more.

Local Peninsula Schools Designated as Purple Star Schools

Three local public schools were within more than two dozen San Diego County schools designated as Purple Star Schools for 2023 by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond. The California Purple Star Program, in its second year, recognizes schools that are committed and equipped to support the special needs of students and families who are connected to the military. Fifty-nine schools were recognized statewide. The 3 local ones: Correia Middle School, Loma Portal Elementary School, Point Loma High School.

Homecoming and 50th Anniversary of School’s Move Celebrated This Weekend at Pt Loma Nazarene University

This weekend at Point Loma Nazarene University is Homecoming weekend, an annual event beloved by current students, alumni and faculty, and an estimated 1,000 guests will return to their alma mater for the festivities. This year will celebrate the 50-year anniversary of PLNU’s move from Pasadena College to its current location. A photo display will appear in Friday’s chapel as well as outside of the cafeteria, giving students and alumni the opportunity to reflect on the school’s history. PLNU is also celebrating the class of 1973’s 50th reunion. White said that the university is also celebrating past classes’ 45-year, 30-year and 10-year reunions. Over the course of three days, the alumni association will host an average of 24 events on campus. For more

Car Hit Apartment on Santa Monica While Driver Had Medical Issue

A car hit an apartment complex in Ocean Beach Sunday while the driver was having a medical issue, police said. The driver pulled into a parking space in the 4900 block of Santa Monica Avenue at 6:32 a.m. Sunday and hit the building, breaking several windows, stucco and wooden beams, according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department and the San Diego Police Department. The driver was hospitalized.

American Robins Making Rare Appearance in Point Loma – and Many Other Local Areas

American robins, seldom seen in San Diego, now seem to be everywhere, including Point Loma, Lemon Grove and sites out to the desert. Yes, it is the American robin. And its uncharacteristic appearance here in such huge numbers has local ornithologists stumped. “The robin glut has been going on since December,” reports Lesley Handa, an ornithologist on the board of the San Diego Audubon Society. “Some birders in the county have seen 1,750 in certain places. This is very unusual for this species.”

On one recent morning, Paul Lehman, who was longtime editor of Birding magazine and created bird range maps for field guides, counted about 1,500 taking flight at dawn from trees at the San Diego Zoo where they had roosted overnight. He says friends have spotted other massive flocks in the Lake Hodges area near Escondido and in the Poway/Rancho Bernardo area. The robin population is exploding in San Diego and has increased in other areas of Southern California and Southern Arizona, as well.

Has it ever happened before? Not in recent history. Philip Unitt, editor of “Western Birds” and curator of birds at the S.D. Natural History Museum, says it’s the largest robin incursion on record in 50 years. The last time such giant robin flocks were sighted locally was in 1972-73 and, in even greater numbers, in 1961-’62 and 1957-’58, according to the annual Christmas one-day bird count here.

The experts don’t know the exact origin of these robins, who winter in large numbers in the Pacific Northwest and northern states, or why they came. Is it stormy weather? Cold temperatures and snow? Scarce food and water supplies? [Climate crisis?] It’s anyone’s guess. It could be all these things, and more — a perfect storm. …The explosion of these birds actually has a name. “The term for this phenomenon is ‘irruption,’ ” adds Jen Hajj, San Diego Audubon Society event coordinator. An irruption is a sudden change in population density. It tends to be a migratory event when northern birds go somewhere they’re not usually expected — often in search of food. See here for more.

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Frank Gormlie February 20, 2023 at 10:49 am

The Robins are still around. At least 2 dozen were hanging out in my neighbor’s giant pepper tree gobbling up its red berries yesterday.


Frank Gormlie February 22, 2023 at 3:25 pm

OB Planning board voting starts today, Wed., Feb 23. You can either go online here, print and drop off your ballot at the business center, or print and mail in your ballot.

If you want to run applications are still accepted until March 1st. Although you will be considered a write in.


Jenifer L Jordan February 24, 2023 at 7:04 pm

Robins are 160+ strong in Famosa for berries there too.


Jenifer L Jordan February 24, 2023 at 7:11 pm

Has anyone heard if the rumours are true that a guy was found dead in Cleator Park storm tunnel and seven people were overdosed on the Rocks potentially fatally.? Thank you


Richard Brady February 25, 2023 at 1:57 pm

If true about the storm tunnel death, this wouldn’t have happened if the OB Troll Patrol hadnt run me and other unhoused who tried to help the local “homeless pains in our butts but still people” out of town for “helping” organize resistance to the 2k member FB group’s psychological warfare. A few of us would go down there before every storm and check for any late leavers or sleepers. So sad. “Another one down!” they can scrawl on the Troll Corner wall as is their savage custom. :(


Jenifer L Jordan February 24, 2023 at 7:13 pm

My dog friend Pico is fifteen this year and I find it comforting that in his old age all these Robins are here to see him to a happier day!


sealintheSelkirks February 27, 2023 at 12:50 am

I lost nearly all the adult migratory robins that have been born on this property over the last two decades in that NW Heat Dome event of June 2021. It was so abnormally hot that all the ground bugs died or went too deep for the robin couples to feed themselves.

Some died by the end of June, the rest abandoned their nests after the eggs cooked in them or at the moment the babies were pecking their way out and died of the heat. Two of the three eggs in the under the front porch roof corner bracing nest had a hole pecked from inside while the third never got that far.

I’ve probably averaged 20-25 nests every Spring before this. Unfortunately summer ’22 I had maybe a half dozen adult robins show up to try again but there were nearly no available ground insects and worms so they disappeared within two weeks. No nests last year at all of any species except hummingbirds. The birdhouses, trees, and crossbeam spots were completely empty or with abandoned partially-built nests.

I’m just completing a Pre-K level 14-picture and story book about a nest in my woodshed that I took photos of more than ten years ago. From blue eggs to babies with feathers, and then started over with the new eggs that were laid within days of the first batch of babies leaving. And the second time I caught the first to leap off the edge as it leaned forward to jump…and it’s flight and the dance it did upon landing on my log tops firewood pile. And now they are mostly gone. It is heartbreaking.

I really miss the robins and juncos and mountain finches and swallows and mountain bluebirds and and and… What’s happening is awful up here in these mountains. The biologists have been warning us about impacts and why…and I read a biologist report a year ago that 3-5 BILLION birds have disappeared in the US since 2000.

The raptors seem to be doing okay including Bald and Golden Eagles, different kinds of hawks, Ravens and crows. The record heat didn’t get them at least.

Cherish them while you can. I really missed hearing the birdsong in this forest last year.



Jan Michael Sauer February 27, 2023 at 10:08 pm

And this morning on NPR it was reported that the temperatures in The Gulf of Mexico have risen at twice the rate of the world’s oceans. This means more and stronger hurricanes and loss of more ocean species. More people-more destruction.


sealintheSelkirks February 28, 2023 at 12:50 am

And the Arctic has risen 4x the rate of the rest of the world. Antarctica is melting from the bottom up and the most scary landlocked glaciers are destabilizing at a rate that are…ummmm…completely unexpected. With the Jet Stream so messed up the science community is calling it ‘deranged’ which can’t be a good thing.

But seems like tornado season is now year round in the central/southeast part of this continent because all that Gulf heat has got it cooking while the extreme cold drops from my corner of the country. What, 7 yesterday through Oklahoma? There’s been tornadoes every month since…last Spring…

It’s after midnight here, snowing out the window again under a Winter Storm Advisory. The deranged jet stream is expected to send this your way before making the turn at the lower dip and throwing it east towards…tornado country.

Isn’t this roller coaster ride fun?



sealintheSelkirks February 28, 2023 at 12:52 am

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