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    City selects Anaheim Arena Management to operate Pechanga Arena
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 20, 2019 | 1083 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Pechanga Arena is home to four sports franchises including the Gulls, the sixth professional hockey team there, as well as the San Diego Sockers, San Diego Seals, and San Diego Strike Force.  / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Pechanga Arena is home to four sports franchises including the Gulls, the sixth professional hockey team there, as well as the San Diego Sockers, San Diego Seals, and San Diego Strike Force. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    The group that owns the San Diego Gulls minor hockey league team, Anaheim Arena Management (AAM), has been selected by the City of San Diego to replace Pechanga Arena’s current operator, Arena Group 2000, as arena manager following a request for proposals (RFP) process. “From the outset of this process, our goal was to improve the experience for the arena’s users and guests, enhance the volume and quality of programming and increase revenue for San Diego taxpayers,” said Tim Ryan, president/CEO of AAM. “We are excited that the review panel agreed with this vision and selected our bid. We look forward to working collaboratively with the city staff to finalize an agreement that will achieve all of this plus deliver more value for the City of San Diego and its residents,” Ryan said. Spokesperson Craig Benedetto noted AAM is a subsidiary of H&S Ventures, which is the family office of Henry Samueli of Orange County, who owns the NHL Anaheim Ducks and the Gulls. “This kicks off negotiation of a contract with the City, and that contract will be brought back to the City Council for approval,” Benedetto said. “The lease still needs to be approved by council committee and the full council, which could happen toward the end of the year,” said Arian Collins, supervising City spokesperson.  Arena Group 2000 said it intends to challenge the proposed arena management change. “With only three years left to the building’s life as defined through the RFP process, we are the operator that has invested over $30 million into this building making our 53-year-old arena a top 10 arena in the world with 10,000 to 15,000 seating capacity,” said Rick Schloss, Arena 2000 spokesman. “We plan to defend our position to be the arena operator as we have for the last 28 years, as this lease still needs to be negotiated with the City and ratified through the City Council. Through this RFP process, over 450 local groups and businesses have supported us. Our team is extremely proud of our accomplishments,” Schloss said.  The Gulls are owned by Henry and Susan Samueli. Henry Samueli is a businessman, engineer and philanthropist who co-founded Broadcom Corp. and is its board chairman. He is a professor on leave of absence in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at UCLA. He is a named inventor in 75 U.S. patents. Pechanga Arena is home to four sports franchises including the Gulls, the sixth professional hockey team there, as well as the San Diego Sockers, San Diego Seals, and San Diego Strike Force. The arena holds 125 events welcoming 750,000 visitors annually.  The original Sports Arena was built in 1966 by Robert Breitbard, a local football hero who played for Hoover High School and San Diego State, for $6.4 million. In November 2016, Sports Arena celebrated 50 years of bringing live entertainment to San Diego.  Over the years, the venue hosted a heavyweight boxing championship fight between Muhammed Ali and Ken Norton, as well as numerous concerts by high-profile musicians and bands. Valley View Casino's naming rights expired Nov. 30, 2018, leaving the arena without an official name. The City Council announced on Dec. 4, 2018, that the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians, owners of the Pechanga Resort & Casino win Temecula in Riverside County, had acquired for $400,000 per year the naming rights to the arena, officially renaming it Pechanga Arena. The agreement runs through May 2020.
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    Local legends inducted into San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 20, 2019 | 4803 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Surfing legends John Holly, Skip Frye, and Mike Hynson were inducted into San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame. / Photo by Roy Porello
    Surfing legends John Holly, Skip Frye, and Mike Hynson were inducted into San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame. / Photo by Roy Porello
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    Several local surfers and shapers were among legends of the sport who were inducted Aug. 13 into San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame at a ceremony at Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach. The event was hailed by its organizers as “the greatest gathering of surf legends San Diego has ever seen.” Among the inaugural list of surfing hall of famers: • Skip Frye (from Pacific Beach known for his pro surf career and iconic boards.) • Mike Hynson (from Pacific Beach who costarred in the 1966 hit "The Endless Summer" and surfboard design guru.) • Butch Van Artsdalen (from La Jolla, a pioneering surfer who took on 25-foot waves in Hawaii to garner the title "Mr. Pipeline.") • Tom Ortner (La Jolla resident and an icon in the Windansea beach community.) • Carl Ekstrom (from La Jolla, developed the first asymmetrical boards in the late 1960s.) • Larry Gordon (a fixture in the board making community from the 1960s until his death in 2016.) • John Holly (veteran Ocean Beach surfer and board shaper.) • Chuck Hasley (founder of the Windansea Surf Club of La Jolla.) • Windansea Surf Club (legendary surf club known for boasting some of the best-known surfing names.) Surfboard craftsman Hank Warner, a legend in his own right, was the event’s master of ceremonies. “It was a big event, Belly Up was packed,” said Warner adding, “Ninety-nine percent of surfers grew up idolizing these inductees in the San Diego Surfing Hall of Fame.” Attendees enjoyed live music from Jimmy Lewis, live art from Wade Koniakowsky, and a special collaboration between Warner and surf filmmaker Ira Opper.  "These innovators and pioneers have emerged everywhere that waves break. In this regard, San Diego has been particularly blessed," organizers wrote. "Our 70 miles of coastline have produced some of the most innovative shapers and wave stylists in the sport. And as everyone paddling out to the lineup knows, you have to honor those who have come before us." Warner discussed his long-term goals for the San Diego Hall of Fame. “We’re going to be doing this yearly,” he said. “We have a list of about 100 people we’ll be choosing from.” Warner pointed out the inaugural list of legends are “influential surfers so it was pretty much bulletproof (selecting) for the first year.” Warner said the objective is for the San Diego Hall of Fame to be nonprofit and truly representative of the surfing community. “It’s an amazing group,” he noted. “It’s not just surfers. It’s shapers. It’s artists. It’s photographers, the whole gamut. It’s really honoring all the elite surfers who have come before us.” Discussing the policy of a future brick-and-mortar San Diego Hall of Fame site, Warner envisions inductees “donating boards, photos, wetsuits, etc., priceless heirlooms to the museum/hall of fame.”
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    La Jolla Cove’s famous caves still an attraction, especially Sunny Jim
    by JILL DIAMOND
    Aug 18, 2019 | 15349 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    The Sunny Jim cave silhouette. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    The Sunny Jim cave silhouette. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    In addition to its breathtaking scenery La Jolla has something a lot of beachside communities don’t – sea caves. The seven La Jolla sea caves – The White Lady, Shopping Cart, Little Sister, Sea Surprize, Arch Cave, Sunny Jim and Clam Cave – can be identified from east to west. It is said the caves were formed from a 75-million-year-old sandstone cliff, and according to an LA Times article, they were originally used as a hideout for drug smugglers and some pirates. In addition, all but the Sunny Jim and The White Lady were named in the 1900s and 1800s by lifeguards to help identify landmarks during search and rescue missions, according to the same article. Speaking of Sunny Jim, it is the only La Jolla cave accessible by land; visitors can walk down 145 steps into a hand-dug tunnel after buying a ticket at the Cave Store. As the story goes, and according to La Jolla Historical Society archives, the Sunny Jim cave has a long history dating back to 1902. “The Sunny Jim Cave was one of seven La Jolla caves originally exploited as a tourist attraction in the early 1900s by Gustav Schultz, a German immigrant, artist, and engineer. Schulz, a self-proclaimed professor, artist, photographer and civil engineer, who dug a tunnel into it and provided public access from land, first by rope and then stairs, collected a modest sum from anyone wishing to enter,” said La Jolla Historical Society historian Carol Olten. “The same idea has continued into the present day with people paying a fee to make the descent  from inside the Cave Store into Sunny Jim, eponymously named after a historic cartoon character whose profile is vaguely suggested by the silhouette seen from looking oceanward through it,” Olten said. She added that for many years the store operated mainly as a shell shop for exotic and not-so-exotic-finds, but the merchandise today is more generalized with “beachy things, postcards, a few antiques and memorabilia.” Early Days In the beginning, visitors had to enter through the original Schulz’s Cave Store and lowered themselves down into the tunnel by a rope. Years later the steps were added and continue today, according to current Cave Store shop owner Shannon Smith. Smith said she has owned the shop for a few years now located at 1325 Coast Blvd. and it has become more of a souvenir store for those looking to take a bit of the nostalgia back home. “The store and cave continue to be popular attractions all these decades later we have thousands who visit yearly and probably hundreds daily,” she said. “We are the oldest continuously running business – we’ve been open more than 100 years. “When people go down the steps it takes about 10-15 minutes through a long tunnel and they end up on a platform inside the cave where they can take in the scene,” she said. There’s no swimming or jumping into the water and because it’s a sea cave the water comes in and out of the cave. “The water is underneath you, so you don’t get wet. People love it,” she said. However, some recent construction in the area has caused a bit of a wrinkle for the shop. “It has slowed down slightly but people are still allowed to drive down here but they can’t drive all the way down Coast Boulevard,” she said. “We still have a lot of visitors, but parking is limited. “The city is doing some repair work on Cove Cave, which is not accessible to locals or tourists.” According to Anthony Santacroce, senior spokesperson for City of San Diego, the city has taken safety precautions for the repairs. Crews began the emergency construction project to stabilize one cliff area on Aug. 8, and the roadway in La Jolla following an analysis by geology experts. He said experts discovered a zone of weakness where "Koch's Cave," (pronounced as "cook" and named after lifeguard Jeff Koch who made a daring rescue there in 1977) is located underneath Coast Boulevard and recommended action be taken. “We immediately shut down the street and initiated an emergency contract to reinforce the cave,” Santacroce said. As part of the stabilization project, sections of Cave Street and Coast Boulevard will be closed temporarily to all traffic for about six weeks or longer depending on what is found by the crews, he said. “People can still get around and this cave will essentially be closed off permanently, we’re just not sure how it will appear when the project is completed,” he said. “People however can still get around and see the beautiful La Jolla caves.” Other Sunny Jim Folklore According to more folklore, some stories suggest the cave was initially called “Sunny Jim” by Frank Baum, the author of “The Wizard of Oz.” Why? Because looking outward from the inside of the cave, the opening profile resembles the cartoon mascot for British Force Wheat Cereal (named Sunny Jim) created by W.W. Denslow in the 1920s. There are other rumors and tales suggesting the cavern was named after former California Gov. “Sunny Jim” Rolph. A third tales says it is named so because its opening resembles a smiling (sunny) man (named Jim for an unknown reason) facing leftward.Like Sunny Jim the other six caves have their own story and history, which will be explored in upcoming articles.
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    Family and friends remember Mike White at Sunset Cliffs ceremony
    Aug 15, 2019 | 10395 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Melinda White (left) embraces an emotional Eva King during the memorial at Sunset Cliffs for Mike White, a well-known angler and surfboard shaper who grew up on Ladera Street. Melinda, Mike’s sister, helped organize the memorial and paddle out where dozens of friends and family, including King, who was a life-long friend and former girlfriend, came out to celebrate Mike’s life on Sunday, Aug. 11. ‘Sunset Cliffs was his world and his playground,’ said Melinda. ‘He loved it here.’ 	         THOMAS MELVILLE / PENINSULA BEACON
    Melinda White (left) embraces an emotional Eva King during the memorial at Sunset Cliffs for Mike White, a well-known angler and surfboard shaper who grew up on Ladera Street. Melinda, Mike’s sister, helped organize the memorial and paddle out where dozens of friends and family, including King, who was a life-long friend and former girlfriend, came out to celebrate Mike’s life on Sunday, Aug. 11. ‘Sunset Cliffs was his world and his playground,’ said Melinda. ‘He loved it here.’ THOMAS MELVILLE / PENINSULA BEACON
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    Melinda White speaks during the memorial for Mike White.  / THOMAS MELVILLE / PENINSULA BEACON
    Melinda White speaks during the memorial for Mike White. / THOMAS MELVILLE / PENINSULA BEACON
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    Friends and family participate in the paddle out at Sunset Cliffs. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Friends and family participate in the paddle out at Sunset Cliffs. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Friends and family held a memorial and paddle out at Sunset Cliffs on Sunday, Aug. 11 for Point Loma native Mike White, a well-known angler, free diver, and surfboard shaper. Long time friend and former girlfriend Amy "Oklahoma" Steiner, who helped organize the memorial, shared her eulogy for her close friend Mike: “Mike was a great guy, not a dude or a bro, as he would correct you. We all knew he was a true waterman, a surfer, windsurfer, skateboarder, free diver, fisherman and whatever else he could do in his backyard, literally. “His family bought a piece of land on Ladera Street in 1964 two years prior to Mike being born. It would be the third home at Sunset Cliffs and an incredible dream for Charles and Sheris White’s unborn son to discover. “Mike was forever a cliff dweller, it ‘shaped’ his life (pun intended). Mike was so wise about the ocean and fearless. He originally was a fisherman sitting on a longboard way out in the kelp beds. His mother was strong and knew he was a smart boy. At a young age he would bring home dinner. “Then his sights were set on building himself a board, and the story explodes there. Mike was always curious, his brain didn't rest. He learned how to glass and became the go-to-guy laminating boards for Skip Frye and others. (In fact, the people who paddled out for his memorial almost all had boards he laminated with the ‘Great White’ shark logo.) “Mike was a humble guy. He was kind and extremely sensitive, his friendliness was his kindness. A true optimist, he threw himself into life. But Mike's life turned around when Clark Foam closed it's doors in 2005. The entire surfboard shaping industry dropped their collective heads. This industry was what Mike knew, and he became lost without it. “He became deeply depressed and eventually lost almost everything. He turned to alcohol. It broke everyone's heart. He eventually worked in construction, did landscaping and handy work around Point Loma, but stopped going in the water. “I dated Mike for nearly eight years, he was one of my greatest loves. There were good years when he got sober, but eventually, his heart broke and he crumbled. He had so many who admired him and when he grew ill, he suffered nearly alone. He and I spoke often and I saw him almost weekly with his friend Mike O'Brien. Mike did everything with passion and that’s why he had such admiration from his many friends. His positive spirit affected everyone he knew. “He was an amazing man and I was lucky enough to have had his friendship for 28 years. When we first met at the Cliffs in 1991, I told him I was from Oklahoma. After that, when I strolled the Cliffs I would hear his voice beckon ‘Oklahoma’ and he would greet me with his wide smile and reach out for a hug. I will forever be grateful and never forget him.”
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    Ocean Beach mom-preneur leads Sexy Mama Movement
    by VICTORIA DAVIS
    Aug 14, 2019 | 4522 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Luci Lampe with Sexy Mama Movement members at Elka Yoga & Wellness Center.
    Luci Lampe with Sexy Mama Movement members at Elka Yoga & Wellness Center.
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    Luci Lampe (right) and Angela Quisumbing at a Sexy Mama Movement outing.
    Luci Lampe (right) and Angela Quisumbing at a Sexy Mama Movement outing.
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    What started out as a one-on-one personal training business took only two years to become a nation-wide movement. “I couldn’t keep showing up to my clients as just this fitness person when so much other stuff was happening in my life,” said Luci Lampe, entrepreneur and founder of the Sexy Mama Movement. “So, I started to let people in on my journey. What I’ve been focusing on is building an event experience where, when women show up, they don’t just throw out business cards, but they can be personal and share real stuff about what’s going on in their lives. Lampe is a singer, actor, model, author, fitness coach, wife, and mother of four. While Lampe had been a long-time “mom-preneur” with her own personal training business — helping new moms wanting to get fit again — Lampe’s business took on a new focus in 2015 after her husband Ryan injured his back and was diagnosed with a genetic nerve disease. “I felt like I was drowning under everything,” said Lampe, who at the time was expecting her and Ryan’s fourth baby and had just moved the family to Ocean Beach. “I would take walks along Sunset Cliffs and think, ‘I don’t know what I’m doing anymore with my business.’ I just wasn’t motivated to do fitness training. But I had to make a decision – am I going to be miserable until this is better, or am I going to find a way to enjoy and live my life?” In 2017, Lampe changed her business focus from body building to community building with the Sexy Mama Movement, providing support for entrepreneurial moms through accountability groups, informal meetings, luncheons and group events and retreats. “I started looking at the type of women who were coming to me for fitness help and it was all these visionary women doing the juggling act of being a mom and owning a business,” said Lampe. “So, I created a networking structure where women could walk away feeling seen, supported and actually connected to other moms.” In addition to business-focused lunches, as well as group Yoga, Zumba and belly dance outings for the moms, Lampe created an intensive 12-week program called, “Self Mastery for Mom Entrepreneurs.” focusing on being a mom, being a partner, being a business owner and how to balance it all. “It wasn’t just about fitness, it wasn’t just about business, it wasn’t just about being a mom, but it was about pulling all of those things together,” said Angela Quisumbing, founder of Angela Grace Events and a Sexy Mama Movement member. “I used to think that business and family were not to be mixed. I feel like we’re all raised to not mix business and pleasure. But the more I kept things separate, the more I struggled.” Quisumbing added: “Working with Luci and this large caliber of women, it taught me how to bring everything together in a comfortable way. I credit a lot of my growth to this program of accountability.” Lampe has published three books — “The Sexy Mama Manifesto,” “The Sexy Mama Morning,” and “Achieving Sexy” —and has accumulated 20 Sexy Mama Movement members from not just San Diego, but all over the U.S. Lampe is now looking to pass the Sexy Mama torch. “All this deserves a lot more attention than what I alone am able to do,” said Lampe. It needs a larger team of women to be the driving force. I don’t know who I’ll hand the movement off to yet, but when I know, I’ll know.” sexymamamovement.com.
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