Ocean Beach Planners to Hold Virtual Meeting – Wed., April 1

March 31, 2020 by Staff

In an historic first, the Ocean Beach Planning Board will meet this Wednesday via Zoom, which means they’ll have a virtual meeting over the internet. And anyone who wishes can observe and participate – see the information about how to be included either on the official agenda, posted below, or just before the agenda. But this is a first – created by the COVID-19 crisis (and unless the Board has practiced this method, it could be a tad bumpy – but fun! Check it out!)

The meeting will begin at 6 pm Wednesday, April 1 (… and no, this is not an April First joke). Usually the Board meets in the community room at the OB Rec Center.

Most of the agenda has to with the Board’s recent election, appointments to the Board and the election of the new Executive Board. The volunteer panel of community planners will certify the March election results, consider appointing veteran Jane Gawronski to the vacant District 2 seat, and likewise, the same with Derek Dudek who is seeking appointment to the vacant District 1 seat. Finally, the Board will elect their Executive Board, which includes the Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer.

Info on How to Connect to the Meeting Via Zoom

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The Changing Tides of Ocean Beach – Electric Chair Gets a Make-Over

March 30, 2020 by Staff

The Electric Chair on Newport Ave gets a make-over. … And now, it’s gone.

Thanks to Steve O from Kilowatt to keep us up to date. Here’s what it used to look like:

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OB Walkabout: The Plague Year

March 26, 2020 by Staff

by Joaquin Antique

In years past, the OB Rag‘s Walkabout series has tried to provide humorous and enlightening photo essays that capture the beauty and weirdness of Ocean Beach. On occasion it’s even been successful.

During the past week this reporter has walked the mean streets of Ocean Beach in search of elusive necessities such as hand sanitizer, rice, and prescription meds. In the process, a few photos have been taken that show some of our town’s varied responses to this horrible situation that has impacted every aspect of life in our community.

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‘Die for the DOW’

March 25, 2020 by Staff

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First Day of Spring 2020 in Ocean Beach

March 19, 2020 by Staff

It’s the very first day of Spring 2020 in Ocean Beach.

One would never know it. Empty streets. Plenty of parking on Newport. Shops closed. No one on the beach under “blue” skies. The Pier Parking lot looking nearly empty.

This is our new reality.

Luckily for us, some OB Ragsters ventured out to record what they saw – and didn’t see.

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Ocean Beach During the Coronavirus Shut-Down

March 17, 2020 by Staff

Folks line up at OB People’s Food. Only 20 customers allowed in the store at a time, one goes out another one goes in.

Others went surfing or visited the tide pools. (All photos by Bob Edwards unless otherwise noted. )

Here are more photos taken today, St. Patrick’s Day – Tuesday, March 17-, in Ocean Beach.

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OB Library Book Sale Postponed Due to Rain

March 12, 2020 by Staff

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Cancelled: ‘Remarkable Women’ – 100th Anniversary of 19th Amendment – 2 Day Conference

March 9, 2020 by Staff


2020 Conference CANCELED!
CANCELED Mar.13 & 15: 1920-2020 Remarkable Women Conference

A message from Congress of History President Christopher Milnes:

Based upon the Governor’s proclamation that all nonessential gatherings be postponed due to the state of emergency regarding this fast-spreading virus, the Congress of History is sad to announce that we must CANCEL the “Remarkable Women” conference schedule for March 13 and 14, 2020.

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New and Re-Elected Ocean Beach Town Council Board Members Take Their Seats

March 6, 2020 by Staff

At the last Ocean Beach Town Council meeting, the newly-elected and re-elected board members took their seats. Re-elected was Mark Winkie, President, Jon Carr – now Vice President, Cameron Reid – now Corresponding Secretary, and Grace Quigley – now Events Chair.

Also just elected to the Board are Christie Romano and Arlene Fink (not pictured above). The rest of the community certainly congratulates and welcomes these dedicated volunteers.

The next public meeting is Wednesday, March 25, 7:00 pm at the Masonic Lodge

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The Green Calendar for March 2020

March 6, 2020 by Staff

Provided by the Ocean Beach Green Center

Events at the Ocean Beach Green Center

Every Tuesday at 10 am – noon (or longer) March 10th, 17th, 24th, 31st. Ma’heonehoo estas, Northern Cheyenne oil painter + musician.
Every Saturday at 10:30 a.m. Climate Mobilization Coalition Meeting.

March 8th Sunday 7 pm Open mic at the Ocean Beach Green Center.

March 12th Thursday 7 pm. Film Night. “Edible City”

March 28th Saturday noon to ? Come visit Ocean Beach Green Center to ignite our collaboration with Eden art garden.

Events not at the Ocean Beach Green Center

March 7th Saturday 9 am – 11 am March’s Ocean Beach Cleanup at OB Pier Ocean

March 7th Saturday 4 pm – 6:30 pm Protest Safari Club International

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Ocean Beach Planning Board Meets Wednesday, March 4

March 2, 2020 by Staff

The OB Planning Board meets this week on Wednesday, March 4. The main agenda items appear to be the permit to demolish and build on the 4700 block of Orchard, a presentation by the city’s Planning Department on utilities franchise fee contracts, as well as another presentation by SDG&E on their franchise fee contracts.

The Board is employing a new technique – the consent agenda – which is commonly used in larger legislative jurisdictions – like the city council. Unless a Board member “pulls” the item off the consent agenda, it could be part of a simple vote up or down without discussion on all consent agenda items. (Perhaps a member of the public can also pull an item off.) This is essentially an efficiency thing.

For Wednesday’s agenda, it is being used for the only project the Board has to review – a project that was approved by the Project Review Committee on a vote of 5 to 0 at their meeting on Feb. 19. – the demolition and construction planned for 4719 Orchard Ave. (See agenda.)

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Factionalism on Peninsula Planning Board Is Simply Amazing

February 25, 2020 by Staff

By Geoff Page

Some of the show that was predicted for the February 20 regular monthly meeting of the Peninsula Community Planning Board played out as expected.  The best description of it came from an audience member who walked by and soundlessly pantomimed the word “Wow” accompanied by an expression of amazement.

The gist of it was this.  The first vice-chair of the PCPB is Scott Deschenes who has resigned after one year of the turmoil.  According to the by-laws, the first vice-chair heads up the yearly election subcommittee.  Despite his desire to leave, Scott is willing to fulfill his duties until the end of the election on March 19.  That was not enough for board members “Lucky” Morrison, Don Sevrens, Margaret Virrissimo, and Mandy Havlik.

This group wanted Deschenes removed from chairing the election subcommittee. 

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Midway Planners and Councilwoman Campbell Disconnect Over ‘Grand Central Station’

February 24, 2020 by Staff

By Geoff Page

The highlight of the Midway-Pacific Community Planning Group’s monthly meeting February 19 was an appearance by District 2 City Council member Dr. Jennifer Campbell. But, there appeared to be a serious disconnect between Campbell and the Midway group on the topic of the old SPAWARS site on Pacific Highway. The Navy has renamed it NAVFAC.

Campbell was asked about the site and talked about the “Grand Central Station” transit center idea that SANDAG and the lame duck mayor are pushing. The Navy and SANDAG and the mayor have signed some exploratory documents in this direction. Campbell seemed upbeat about the project and called it a win-win for the Navy and San Diego. This was where the disconnect was apparent.

The Midway group has expressed its displeasure, repeatedly, with how the city has handled everything

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The People, Place, and Spirit of the Wisteria Cottage of Ocean Beach

February 24, 2020 by Staff

by Kathy Blavatt

Under a canopy of flowering fragrant, Wisteria vines in Ocean Beach is an extraordinary place that carries the spirit and history that make our community so very special.

The Wisteria Cottage at 4761 Niagara Avenue, built-in 1907, was owned by Mr. & Mrs. John Clarke. The property has the cottage, a small barn, and shack on the back of the large lot. There was also once a brackish well on the property.

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Peninsula Community Planning Board Struggles With Its Own Implosion – Thurs., Feb.20

February 20, 2020 by Staff

By Geoff Page

Tonight’s meeting of the Peninsula Community Planning Board promises to be as good as any soap opera on TV. The PCPB is in the process of imploding for a variety of reasons but what has happened in recent weeks borders on the theater of the absurd.

Board chair Robert Goldyn and vice chair Scott Deschenes both tendered their resignations January 21 because they were fed up with a faction on the PCPB that has done nothing but disrupt and attack. Both board members, while wishing to be done with the board, graciously stated their resignations would be effective immediately after the after the yearly election on March 19. They explained:

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Ocean Beach’s Livingston’s Mexican Grill Has Closed

February 5, 2020 by Staff

Livingston’s Mexican Grill & Chicken Kitchen on Newport Ave in Ocean Beach has closed.

The hole in the wall Mexican eatery at 5026 Newport Avenue in Ocean Beach has been next to Sunshine Company Saloon for more than two decades. Sunshine customers could also order from a separate counter inside.

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OB Bike Path Closed Between Pacific Highway and Morena Blvd.

February 5, 2020 by Staff

The Ocean Beach bike path between Pacific Highway and Morena Boulevard is now closed temporarily. It is expected to re-open on Friday, February 28th.

The closure began Feb. 3. Bicyclists, joggers and pedestrians are urged to look out for detour routes and to be especially careful while traveling in the area where construction is going on.

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To Those Armed Trump Loyalists: ‘Take Me First’

February 4, 2020 by Staff

By Joni Halpern

Maybe we should start listening to our fellow Americans who have been stockpiling guns for a battle they foresee if Mr. Trump is not re-elected in 2020.

Several of these folks have warned they will take arms against Mr. Trump’s enemies, which now comprise about 60 percent of the American voting public.

These armed Trump loyalists are said to believe that white America is under attack by people of color who are reaching majority status, immigrants who are using excuses of violence and fear to enter America and steal our jobs, and radical liberals (Democrats) who are conspiring to engage in morally despicable behavior.

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Ocean Beach Town Council: Holiday Parade Winners and Business of the Village

January 27, 2020 by Staff

By Geoff Page

The parking lot was full, people had parked in the alley, there was no street parking, and there was a good-sized crowd inside the Masonic Lodge for the first meeting of 2020 for the Ocean Beach Town Council on Wednesday, January 22. The reason was quickly apparent as the council was giving out its annual awards for floats in the Ocean Beach Christmas Parade.

Holiday Parade Winners

Before the awards were announced, the council explained that there were 112 entries in the parade. That number was surprising; the parade has grown a lot over the years. When the judging was over, they handed out the following awards for the best floats:

Use of LightsOB Elementary

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Peninsula Planners Review North Chapel Changes

January 22, 2020 by Staff

“Factionalism” on Planning Board Has Led Chair to Resign in March

By Geoff Page

The subject of what was happening to a revered building at Liberty Station was the main item of interest at the first monthly Peninsula Community Planning Board meeting of 2020 – held on January 16 at the Point Loma Library. The changes coming to the North Chapel are better known now and the only people in the room in favor of the changes were the new operators.

The North Chapel has been in the news for the past two years at least. When McMillin divested itself of Liberty Station ownership, operation of the chapel changed hands. A company named 828 Venue Management Company has control of the old building now. They came to the meeting to explain their plans.

On the 828 Venue Management Company website, the opening banner reads “Unique Wedding & Event Venues Across the Nation.”

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Midway Planners Reject Dixieline’s Request for a New, Reasonable Lease

January 20, 2020 by Staff

By Geoff Page

The Dixieline Lumber and Home Center store on Sports Arena Blvd. came before the Midway-Pacific Planning Group on Wednesday, January 15, asking for help. They did not receive the help they were looking for.

The subject that garnered the most discussion at the planning group’s first regular monthly meeting of 2020 was the expiration of Dixieline’s lease on May 31. The company has been at that location since 1967, leasing the land from the city of San Diego. The city owns the land east and west of the Sports Arena, including the arena and the huge parking lot. The city has plans for redeveloping all of that property and the fate of all the current tenants will depend on those plans.

The city’s land east of the Sports Arena includes the dilapidated shopping center immediately east, Dixieline, and the old Pier One Imports property now a Salvation Army store. On the west side is the Sports Arena Village shopping center bordered by Hancock Street.

Dixieline wants a new lease from the city and they want a realistic term for that lease.

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Custodian at Silver Gate Elementary Injured in Hit and Run in Midway District – Suspect Arrested

January 13, 2020 by Staff

A custodian at Silver Gate Elementary in Point Loma, Sharon Wood, was seriously injured in a hit-and-run incident as she and two others were crossing Sports Arena Boulevard after a Gulls game at Pechanga Arena on January 3. A short time later, a suspect was arrested.

Wood was attending the game with friends and once it was over, they were crossing the 3500 block, reportedly outside the crosswalk. The driver of a silver 2000 Ford Mustang had exited the Home Depot parking lot on the south side of the street, turned right and struck the pedestrians in the No. 2 lane. Ms. Wood suffered a fractured pelvis and left ankle. The others were also injured.

The driver did not stop but continued eastbound on Sports Arena Boulevard.

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Nude Man Rescued While Clinging to Side of Sunset Cliffs Sunday Morning

January 13, 2020 by Staff

A nude man was rescued by first responders clinging to the side of Sunset Cliffs Sunday morning, Jan. 12.

Around 10:40 am, San Diego Lifeguards received calls of a naked man clinging to the very sheer cliff near Sunset Cliffs Boulevard and Guizot Street. A small crowd, as one can imagine, had gathered to observe the potentially dangerous situation. The man, unidentified as of yet, was gripping the cliff – where there isn’t much to hold on to – about 20 feet from the bottom.

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Run for a Seat on the OB Town Council – Election Mixer at Wonderland, Thurs. Jan.9

January 7, 2020 by Staff

Candidate Statements Due January 20

If you’ve mulled over the idea already – or even if you haven’t – now is the time to get somewhat serious about running for a seat on the Ocean Beach Town Council. You know, the folks who put up OB’s Holiday Tree and who run the annual Holiday Parade and who raise thousands of dollars for seniors and needy families.

Well, every year, half their Board is up for grabs – that’s 7 seats. And, there’s an Election Mixer coming up this Thursday night, Jan. 9 at Wonderland. It’s a chance to meet the current Board members.

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GoFundMe Set Up for Genie Zucchini Phillips’ Celebration of Life – Jan. 25

January 7, 2020 by Staff

Friends of Genie Zucchini Phillips have set up a GoFundMe page to raise money to pay for her Celebration of Life. She passed away on December 31 of 2019. (Genie also went by Sapienza.)

Genie’s Celebration of Life has been set for Saturday, January 25, 2020 at the Masonic Center in Ocean Beach.

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A Tale of Two Generals

January 6, 2020 by Staff

By Joni Halpern

Once upon a time there were two generals. One was a fit-looking guy with gray hair, a handsome older face with a square jaw, wearing a nice-looking uniform trimmed in gold braid, decorated with medals and campaign ribbons. The other general was a guy with – well, pretty much the same appearance.

One general worked for Country No. 1, a big, brash, rich, well-armed and -equipped place with millions of patriotic people. The other general worked for Country No. 27 (depending on which Gross Domestic Product (GDP) list you consult). Country No. 27 was not rich; it had some notable armaments and trained soldiers, but it was brash, and its people were very patriotic.

Both countries were involved militarily in countries outside their borders.

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The Many Shades of Red

December 24, 2019 by Staff

All Photographs by Kathy Blavatt

by Kathy Blavatt

In nature, color red is as vital as it’s complementary color green. Red makes the greens pop. What would the Christmas holidays be without the brilliant red poinsettias and berries?

Valentines’ gift of crimson roses is the traditional flower representing love and passion.

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A Christmas Gift to Those Who Struggle With Low Income

December 23, 2019 by Staff

By Joni Halpern

Picture it. Decorations everywhere. A beautiful tree twinkling in the background. A bright and cheerful tablecloth. Sparkling silverware. Shiny plates. Candlelight winking off crystal. And best of all, a table groaning with your favorite holiday foods and all the trimmings.

Oh, wait. That’s someone else’s Christmas. The one America is preparing for low-income people is different.

For people of inadequate means, we have a gift that keeps on giving. It is a gift that will take them far and help them realize the American Dream they have desired for so long. The American People writ large generously give them this gift so they can finally rise from the ranks of inadequacy and join those of us gathered around a Christmas table like the one described above.

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Impeach Trump Rally in San Diego Turns Out Hundreds

December 16, 2019 by Staff

An impeach Trump rally was held in San Diego, Sunday, December 15, in front of the San Diego County Admin Building off Harbor Drive. Reportedly, at least 400 San Diegans joined in the event – to send a message to Congress and the Senate.

The rally was part of the nationwide “Nobody Is Above the Law” protests.

This national mobilization is part of a massive, grassroots effort to ensure Congress holds Donald Trump accountable for using military aid to pressure Ukraine to interfere in our 2020 elections.

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OB Subway Closed But Thai Restaurant to Open in Same Location

December 11, 2019 by Staff

By OB Rag Staff

The OB Subway shop on Cable Street is indeed closed. In fact the former owner, Maziar Boushehry, wrote a good-bye of sorts on social media, re-posted below. What is coming in to take its place?

Our intrepid reporter walked into the location and saw 4 people reading blueprints. They told him a Thai restaurant was coming in – and they hope to open in February 2020. The owner of the new Thai eatery owns another shop in North Park, called Soi 30th.

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