‘Friends of OB’ campaign raising funds for a safe and clean community
Published - 09/25/20 - 01:15 PM | 2251 views | 0 0 comments | 42 42 recommendations | email to a friend | print
An empty Newport Avenue earlier this year after the shutdown from COVID-19. / Photo by Jim Grant
An empty Newport Avenue earlier this year after the shutdown from COVID-19. / Photo by Jim Grant

A collaboration of the Ocean Beach MainStreet Association and The Peninsula Alliance, the new “Friends of OB” campaign rolled out on Sept. 25 to encourage donations to continue to enhance the eclectic beach community. The initial goal is to raise $10,000 by the end of this year. Donations will fund efforts for a cleaner, safer, and beautified Ocean Beach. 

“This campaign will serve as a catalyst to continue to revitalize our already vibrant community of Ocean Beach,” said Dave Martin, Ocean Beach MainStreet Association and The Peninsula Alliance board member. “The new project will support beautification efforts in the area, and we hope many will contribute and become a ‘Friend of OB.’” 

As a nonprofit, the Ocean Beach MainStreet Association (OBMA) relies heavily on special events such as the Street Fair & Chili Cook-Off, Oktoberfest, and numerous smaller events and fundraisers to provide funds to enhance its programs. Due to COVID-19, OBMA has been unable to provide the additional funding needed to enhance its community programs.

The new Friends of OB campaign encourages individuals and businesses alike for help in enhancing the Clean & Safe Program by becoming a Friend of OB with a tax-deductible donation online. Those who donate will have the option to be highlighted on OBMA’s monthly newsletter as well as on FriendsofOB.org.  

In 2019, OB’s Clean & Safe Program provided more than 20,000 dog waste bags, removed 415 stickers, maintained 22 murals, removed 505 pieces of graffiti, and cleaned up more than 33,800 cigarette butts. The new Friends of OB campaign aims to continue these actions. 

“We are excited to gear up for a new opportunity to generate funds and continue our efforts to better our community,” said Denny Knox, executive director of the OBMA. “Our beach town is open. We look to our community of Ocean Beach and to those who love this unique neighborhood to help us by contributing to our Friends of OB program efforts.” 

The campaign focuses on three main pillars: clean, safe, and beautification. 

- Donations to the “clean” program funds trash removal along Newport Avenue each morning; maintaining and cleaning the trash receptacles as needed; power-washing Newport Avenue; the MAD schedules and pays for one block of Newport Avenue per month. OBMA enhances these cleaning services when possible through special event income (which is limited due to COVID) and through private donations. The OBMA also helps coordinate the removal of graffiti around town and is putting together a graffiti removal task force. 

- The “safe” program’s goal is to complement San Diego Police Department’s efforts. The security team acts as an extra set of “eyes and ears” for law enforcement and property owners and responds to service calls in a timely fashion when they are in the business districts. The security team helps to deter aggressive panhandling and other nuisance behavior; utilize the letter of agency to remove trespassers from private property; assist with directions and information; maintain open communications with police to report ongoing issues, and add a presence in business districts to prevent undesirable behavior.   

- Donations to the “beautification” program will fund a list of projects to keep Ocean Beach vibrant. Some of those projects include mural projects; artist utility box project; maintaining banners throughout the Newport Avenue and Sunset Cliffs banner district; holiday banners throughout the Newport Avenue and Sunset Cliffs banner district; holiday decorations throughout the downtown area; and continuous maintenance of the landscaping along Newport Avenue. In addition to the day-to-day elements, OBMA continuously works with the City on projects such as trimming palm trees, curb and light post repairs, and much more. 

For those looking to get more involved, the Clean & Safe Committee Meetings are held the 3rd Tuesdays of each month at 8:30 am. 

To learn more about the new program and donate, visit FriendsofOB.org. More information will also be available at the OB Farmers Market, which takes place every Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. on the 4900 block of Newport Avenue between Cable and Bacon streets. 

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