Ocean Beach

The History of Trolley Service to Ocean Beach

January 18, 2019 by Source

OB Historical Society Hosts “Trolley To The Beach” Program

by Bob Edwards

On Thursday, January 17th, the Ocean Beach Historical Society presented a program on the history of electric streetcar service in the beach areas of San Diego. Eric DuVall, local history enthusiast and president of the Historical Society narrated an enlightening and humorous hour long slide and video presentation before a near-capacity crowd at Water’s Edge Faith Community church on Sunset Cliffs Boulevard.

Mr. DuVall’s lecture included photos, maps, and documents taken from the Historical Society’s archives and other sources such as the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum in Campo. It also included numerous photos taken by Mr. DuVall as well as a video he filmed that took viewers on a speeded up, time lapse journey along the route of the first electric street car service to Ocean Beach.

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OB Pier – Like the US Gov’t – Damaged and Shut-Down

January 18, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The Ocean Beach Pier could be a metaphor for our current state. It was significantly damaged by waves and high surf and is closed and shut-down.

Debris and timber from the pier washed up at the foot of Newport Avenue and pieces were collected and carted off by locals and tourists as souvenirs.

Significant damage to the railing and the wood paneling of the pier was caused by mother ocean. 7SanDiego

Also the Pacific surge caused flooding and lifeguards closed the area surrounding Newport Avenue and Abbott Street.

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News from Ocean Beach and Point Loma – Mid-January 2019

January 17, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Scooters Are Getting Everywhere

Those damn scooters can be found everywhere. Check this photo of a recent Sunset Cliffs rescue. It is time for controls on them. According to Councilwoman Jen Campbell’s office, no date for a hearing on scooters has been set. (Hat tip to Kathy Blavatt)

It looks like Bravos Mexican Food – at the corner of Newport and Bacon – is changing ownership. The notice on the window tells us applicant Zuzola-Sutphin, Inc. is going for an ownership change.

Mural Going Up on AppleTree Market – Jan. 19

A mural is going up on the side of AppleTree Market, at 4976 Newport Ave – and it will be installed on Saturday, January 19 at 1:30 pm. The 4ft X 16ft mural has a simple message: “You Are Beautiful”.

Point Loma High Revamp to Begin This Summer

Mission Bay Park Committee Approves SeaWorld’s Second Roller Coaster

San Diego Estuary Clean-up Saturday – Jan.19 from 8 – 11 am

Dog-Friendly Option Chosen for Fiesta Island

Point Loma Curb Artist Returns

City Agrees to Fix Flooding at Ramp on Jennings

Water Main Break Causes Flow Down Narragansett’s Hill

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OB Town Council Board Has 8 Seats Up for Election, Candidate Statements Due Jan. 21, 2019

January 17, 2019 by Staff

The annual election for the Ocean Beach Town Council Board of Directors is coming right up. Voting will take place from Monday, January 28th to Friday, February 8th.

Anyone member considering running as a candidate for one of the 8 seats open must submit their Candidate Statement by Monday, January 21st.

A Candidate Statement is a Letter of Intent stating one’s reasons for wanting to join the OBTC Board and describing any relevant experience or skills

Here is the statement from the OBTC website:

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Faulconer By-Passed Midway District Planning Group in Proposal to Redevelop SPAWAR Property

January 17, 2019 by Source

By Geoff Page

You just have to wonder if city leaders are just plain stupid or just too accustomed to being devious. That certainly occurred to this reporter sitting in the Midway Pacific Community Planning Board’s regular monthly meeting, Wednesday, January 16.

Last week we all learned that the mayor and SANDAG have a proposal to redevelop the property where the big SPAWAR facility sits on Pacific Highway. They want to make it a transit hub with a rail connection to the airport. In fact, they are so far down the line that they visited Elon Musk’s Boring Company because the plan includes a tunnel.

Now, this reporter has been attending the Midway meetings for a long time. This Faluconer/ SANDAG idea had never come up.

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Stabbings in Ocean Beach This Week

January 17, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The week isn’t even over and there’s been two stabbings reported in Ocean Beach so far.

The most recent one was last night about 10 minutes past midnight outside Winstons. And the first one was Monday night on Newport Avenue near Bacon. Both appeared to be instances where someone tried to intervene in an argument or altercation.

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Does Ocean Beach Have a Sinkhole?

January 16, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Water is coming from underneath the asphalt and concrete of the street along Froude near Narragansett Avenue. And a number of local agencies have responded to what is reported to be a water main break.

But is it also a sinkhole? A city of San Diego spokesperson said they had a report of a sinkhole.

7SanDiego reports that police and fire units are at the scene – and they are telling the media water is coming from beneath the street and there are real concerns the street could buckle, causing potholes and even a sinkhole.

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High Surf Collapses Deck at The Inn at Sunset Cliffs

January 16, 2019 by Source

Neighbors are reporting that the deck at The Inn at Sunset Cliffs collapsed a few days ago due to high surf eroding the cliffs below it.

10News reported:

Chris DuCharme, an Ocean Beach resident of 30 years, said a deck overlooking the beach collapsed at The Inn at Sunset Cliffs a few days ago, after the cliffs below crumbled.

“That entire patio behind me was all one patio about two to three weeks ago,” he said. He said it’s something he has seen plenty of times at Sunset Cliffs. “You get something like that,” he said. “Where you get a super high tide, and a big wave will come and double up on itself right at that patio and that wall.”

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The Top Ten Medical Cannabis Developments of 2018

January 15, 2019 by Source

By Sean Khalepari / Americans for Safe Access

It has been an exciting year in the world of cannabis reform. From studies that underscore the therapeutic potential of cannabis to political changes that bode well for patients and consumers, there is much to celebrate. Before we close the books on 2018, let’s take a look back at ten of the most significant developments over the past year from ASA’s perspective and consider their impact.

1. The DEA Removes Misinformation about Cannabis from its Website

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Federal ADA Lawsuit Targets San Diego Scooters

January 15, 2019 by Source

By Greg Moran / Los Angeles Times

SAN DIEGO — The city of San Diego and electric scooter brands Lime and Bird are the targets of a lawsuit filed in federal court alleging the ubiquitous motorized vehicles are violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by impeding and blocking access to city streets and sidewalks.

The suit filed by the group Disability Rights California and three disabled San Diego residents is seeking class-action status for people with mobility or sight disabilities who navigate sidewalks, curb ramps and public spaces also occupied by scooter riders.

“Without full use of the sidewalk and curb ramps at street intersections, persons with mobility and/or visual impairments have significant barriers ”

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Surfing Dangerously in Ocean Beach

January 15, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

A lone surfer glides right on a wave off the jetty.

Meanwhile the County has posted “Danger” signs at the beach. And Joe Ewing was there Monday and caught the drama.

What drama, you ask.

This surfer – and others who ignore the signs – are surfing dangerously. There’s a County water quality advisory out and humans and dogs are asked to stay of coastal waters and bays for at least 72 hours after it rains. Especially in OB where the San Diego River empties.

Here is the County’s advisory:

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Review of Springboard West Festival in Ocean Beach

January 14, 2019 by Source

By Bob Edwards

This past week, Ocean Beach hosted Springboard West, a music festival and conference for aspiring artists. Organized by an LA-based company, the festival featured two days of panels and workshops attended by 50 artists from around the world and culminated on Saturday with a “Band and Brew crawl” at five OB venues.

Hundreds of music fans from San Diego and elsewhere were entertained at the OB Playhouse, Mothers, the Harp, Winstons, and Te Mana by an eclectic mix of artists. The acts that performed work in a variety of genres such as singer/songwriter, pop, and country-, punk-, and soul-influenced rock acts.

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OB Historical Society: ‘Trolley to the Beach’ – Thursday, Jan. 17

January 14, 2019 by Source

“Trolley to the Beach”

Everyone is invited to a presentation of “Trolley to the Beach” by Eric DuVall – president of the OB Historical Society – this Thursday, January 17.

It’s a story of how dependable electric streetcar service allowed people to live at the beach— specifically Ocean Beach, Point Loma, Pacific Beach and La Jolla — and still be able to work downtown. It will be this Thursday

It is the story of the Point Loma Railroad and the San Diego Electric Railway and how they helped our city to grow. As such, it is also the story of D. C. Collier and John D. Spreckels.

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Two Seals Players Did Just ‘Dive In’ and Had to Be Rescued at Sunset Cliffs

January 13, 2019 by Staff

Hey the Pro lacrosse Seals players rescued from heavy surf at Sunset Cliffs who just living their team’s billboard. This billboard appeared recently on Sunset Cliffs Blvd near Voltaire – and OB Rag photographer Bob Edwards snapped this shot.

Here’s the news:

Two members of the San Diego Seals professional lacrosse team were rescued from heavy surf Thursday morning at Sunset Cliffs. Both suffered only minor injuries. The Seals players — identified as Garrett Epple and Nick Ossello — asked a bystander to film them jumping off the cliffs and into the Pacific Ocean at a well-known spot called “The Arches”.

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Humboldt Sheriffs Critical of Netflix, ‘Highly Sensationalized’ Murder Mountain; Director Responds

January 11, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has blasted Netflix over its docu-series “Murder Mountain” as a”highly sensationalized” and incomplete show that portrays law enforcement in a negative light.

The 6-part series now streaming on Netflix follows the case of an Ocean Beach surfer, Garrett Rodriquez, who traveled up to Humboldt County to make money in the cannabis industry, who disappeared and was murdered, and whose body was eventually found in a shallow grave.

But the local Sheriff’s Office put out a statement saying when they were approached by the series producers, the producers claimed their documentary was going to be about the changes in the County from the legalization of marijuana. Instead, the Sheriffs say, the show became “highly sensationalized” and focused only on the death of one man, Rodriguez.

The show is about Garrett from OB and his dad, but it’s also about the history of marijuana cultivation in Humboldt – which today accounts for 60% of all cannabis grown in the U.S. – and the difficulties of once “outlaw” growers are having becoming “legal”; many are facing the prospect of having to end their farming livelihoods.

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A Threat at the Back Door Scared Away by Judi’s Hero Dog

January 11, 2019 by Judi Curry

By Judi Curry

Something happened this morning that I have feared for years. I am so disappointed how I handled it, and I am so grateful to the San Diego Police Department. This is what happened:

At approximately 6:25am I heard a noise but thought that it was one of my students. I live on a corner, and there is construction happening across the alley from my house and I thought they were starting work on the house early – again – and got angry. But then Shadow began barking – loudly – and in a tone that I have never heard him use before. I continued to get ready for the day, and still Shadow barked.

I finally walked to the kitchen and saw what Shadow was barking about. Standing at my back door was a young man – 21 or so; wearing a hoodie; and knocking at the door. Fortunately I have a metal screen security door and even if he had been successful in breaking into the back door, he could not have had access to the house.

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San Diego Is the Largest City in California to Ban Styrofoam

January 11, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The City of San Diego became the largest city in California to ban Styrofoam when the City Council voted 6 to 3 Tuesday, January 8 to approve a law that restricts the use of products made with polystyrene and plastic foam, like take-out containers, coolers and egg cartons.

Imperial Beach and Encinitas join San Diego within the County that also have adopted similar rules. Over 100 other California cities have such bans or restrictions. …

The new ordinance – due to go into effect probably in April 2019 – prevents restaurants and grocery stores from using plastic-foam food containers (often called “Styrofoam” – which is a brand name – referring actually to polystyrene). In addition, it bans anyone from bringing polystyrene products to the beaches or city parks, and it prohibits restaurants from giving out any plastic straws or utensils, unless customers ask for them.

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Midway District Man Gravely Wounded by Police Is ‘Up-and-Coming Rapper’

January 10, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Ryan Bowers was on hard times, apparently. On New Year’s Eve he posted on Facebook, “My life is so stupid.” The 23-year old lived in the Midway District with family. Yet his life got even worse.

On Thursday night, January 3, he allegedly cut his own throat; family members called police; police arrived – confronted him as he refused to drop a knife, and he was then shot multiple times. He now has life-threatening wounds and may not survive.

Yet it turns out Ryan Bowers is described as “an up-and-coming rapper” and is signed to Nick Cannon’s label. Cannon has know him for years.

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Point Loma Brewer: Gov’t Shutdown Could Adversely Affect San Diego Craft Beer Industry

January 10, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The head brewer at Bay City Brewing Company in Point Loma, Austin Pinder, complains that the Federal government shut-down could adversely affect the entire craft beer industry in San Diego.

Pinder told 7SanDiego the Federal agency’s offices that handle new beer labels are closed as part of the shutdown. Yet, every new beer label requires federal approval. Pinder said:

“The Tax and Trade Bureau requires government mandated things on beer labels like alcohol content. It also requires that the content on the packaging is unoffensive.”

Pinder claimed Bay City Brewing Company comes out with up to 30 new beers a year. Plus, other new craft breweries trying to open in San Diego’s heavy bud market could be hurt by the closing of the government.

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Man Dies After Saving Dogs at Jetty in Ocean Beach

January 10, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

The man rescued off the OB Jetty by lifeguards Wednesday has died, reports the San Diego Fire Rescue-Department and County Medical Examiner’s Office today, Thursday, Jan. 10.

Identified as Gregg Owens, the man was rushed to UCSD Medical Center intensive care unit but was later pronounced dead.

Reports have Owens – visiting from Nevada – entering the rough ocean around 2pm to retrieve his dogs.

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High Surf and Ocean Hazards – OB Pier Remains Closed

January 10, 2019 by Source


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The Old Broad: Follow-Up to My COX Complaint

January 10, 2019 by Judi Curry

The Cox technician came out today to perform the necessary changes to fix my land line. [Editordude: please see Judi’s earlier complaints about COX.]

I had several things I wanted to have done:

(1) the modem needed to be changed;

(2) whenever someone called me with an unlisted phone number they had to dial “*82” in order to reach me. That meant that they were dialing 13 numbers to ask me a question.

(3) Somehow Cox has their own “answering machine” and it had circumvented my own answering machine. It frequently told people that I was too busy to talk to them; that the phone was disconnected; their number was blocked, etc.

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Here’s How to Surf at Lunchtime in Ocean Beach

January 10, 2019 by Source

OB photographer Joe Ewing captured Jeff Timons surfing at lunchtime on Wednesday, Jan. 9.

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Around Town in Ocean Beach

January 9, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Here’s a few updates and photos of various businesses and projects around town in Ocean Beach.

Green Center to Open in New Location by End of January

The OB Green Center has moved into Jim Bell’s building, and according to Kip Kruegar, will reopen by the end of this month – January. Bell’s building is directly across Voltaire from the store’s former location. There’s a bunch of interior dry-walling to be done, Kip said – and many boxes to be emptied and items to be re-organized in the front space of the one-story site. The ‘end-of-the-month’ seemed optimistic.

Ebers and Greene Monstrosity Exposed to the Elements

Black tarps covering parts of the infamous Ebers and Greene building have been shredded and dislodged by the wind and are now exposing the interior to the elements – which is not easy on unprotected wood structures.

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There Is Hope Yet for the OB Hardware Store

January 9, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Carl Weidetz – the owner of the OB Hardware store on Newport Avenue – gave this reporter hope that there may yet be a positive end result in the current saga of the future of the store.

On Tuesday, the 8th, as I entered one of the most popular storefronts on OB’s main commercial drag – one that is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year as a business, Carl had a friendly smile and outstretched hand for this reporter.

And in a few minutes of discussion, Carl – who is definitely retiring very soon – told me that there are two possible groups of buyers who want his store. But there’s been a hang-up, he said, in talks between “the lawyers”.

“There’s no sense in buying my business,” he said, “if you can’t get the lease too.”

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Willie Is Back! OB Legend Returns to His Corner

January 9, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

One of the most famous personages in Ocean Beach has returned to his corner at Newport and Cable – Willie is back. An absolute OB legend, Willie is back in front of his Shoe Shine shack behind the coffee kiosk at the corner.

Having been hospitalized for a year, he appeared to this reporter in good spirits and ready to chat with anyone who stops by to say hello. He told me he was 85 years old. He’s a former Marine and was in Korea in the early -50s. But Willie has been a mainstay on Newport Avenue for decades.

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‘Murder Mountain’, Garret Rodriguez and Ocean Beach

January 8, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Ocean Beach is in the very first scene of Murder Mountain – a new docuseries in 6 parts now streaming on Netflix – and we immediately view the iconic image of OB: the Ocean Beach Pier and surfers.

Yet apart from the beauty of the opening, the series is a tragic one – as it follows what happened to Garret Rodriguez, a 29-year old OB surfer – his trip up to northern California to cash in on the marijuana industry, his subsequent disappearance into Humboldt County and murder.

The OB Rag had been following Garret’s disappearance since July 2013 when we reposted an article from Lost Coast Outpost by Kym Kemp. A number of OBceans responded in comments that they recall seeing him around OB. That December we published an update by Kemp – one year after his disappearance. Even then it looked like he had been murdered.

Then the bad news came around mid-December 2013:

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‘Why I Stopped Shopping at Vons and Why COX Is Screwed Up’

January 7, 2019 by Judi Curry

The Old Broad Has Her Say

I Just Remembered Why I Stopped Shopping at Vons

The calls regarding the closing of ACE Hardware, Trader Joes, Vons, Ralphs, have been burning up the wires the past few days. At the request of one of my loyal readers, I decided to do an investigation as to what really was happening.

The first call I made was to ACE Hardware, where they confirmed that the store in Liberty Station will be closing by the end of February. There are all sorts of rumors as to why they are closing, but I was more concerned with the actually closing and did not go further with my questioning.

Then I called Trader Joe’s to find out if it was true that (1) they were closing at Liberty Station and (2) they were going to be moving to the Ralph’s store on Rosecrans. I was assured that neither of the rumors were true. They are staying where there are, and they are not moving to Ralphs.

Then I called Ralphs to see if they were moving. I was told that they were not going anywhere; that the store would be remaining as Ralphs.

Then I called Vons.

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Please Don’t Go in Ocean or Bay Waters Until Wed., Jan. 9th – General Rain Advisory Still In Effect at Ocean Beach, Both Bays and Coastal Waters of County

January 7, 2019 by Staff

General Rain Advisory In Effect

The County’s Department of Environmental Health has issued a General Rain Advisory for the coastal waters of San Diego County – which includes Ocean Beach – due to contamination by urban runoff following the most rains. This is particularly important for Ocean Beach, as the San Diego River empties at Dog Beach – as it’s a significant outlet for urban runoff.

Swimmers, surfers, and other ocean users are warned that levels of bacteria can rise significantly in ocean waters, especially near storm drains, creeks, rivers, and lagoon outlets that discharge urban runoff.

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New Year’s News from Ocean Beach and Point Loma in 2019

January 4, 2019 by Frank Gormlie

Cabrillo National Monument is closed to all visitors including pedestrians and bicyclists.

Due to the government shut-down, Cabrillo National Monument is closed to all visitors including pedestrians and bicyclists.

Ocean Beach Appears in Netflix’s “Murder Mountain”

Murder Mountain, a six-part Fusion docuseries now streaming on Netflix, follows the disappearance and murder of 29-year-old Garret Rodriguez, a friendly surfer-boy from San Diego who ventured north to cash in on California’s green rush.

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