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    9 things to do while in Ocean Beach
    by LAINIE FRASER
    Jun 23, 2016 | 6324 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Ocean Beach sunset as seen from the intersection of Newport Avenue and Guizot Street. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Ocean Beach sunset as seen from the intersection of Newport Avenue and Guizot Street. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Visiting Ocean Beach this weekend for the annual Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off? If this is your annual trip to the eclectic beach community (or if you rarely make it out here), there are many unique things to do before, during and after the Street Fair. We decided to give you a glimpse of some fun experiences available in Ocean Beach. Pier fishing The Walking on Water Cafe is located on the longest concrete structure of its kind on the West Coast, Ocean Beach Pier, and is serving up delicious and fresh snacks daily. Next to the restaurant is a fully stocked bait and tackle shop where customers can rent or buy all of their fishing needs. The pier itself is lined with benches, lights and fish-cleaning stations making it easy and simple to fish throughout the day and then watch the sun set. Retro glam styles Temptress is a rock ’n’ roll inspired clothing boutique located on Bacon Street. The small store is lined with clothes that allow customers to find and embrace their inner Hollywood-inspired glamorous looks. Temptress offers pin-up-style clothing for women and what can only be described as retro looks for men. Everything about Temptress is wild and fun from the people working there to the clothing sold. Retro cocktails Pacific Shores opened in 1941 and is one of the oldest bars in San Diego. The bar opened the day before Pearl Harbor and has remained a landmark of Newport Avenue serving strong and cheap drinks ever since. With an under the sea theme, traditional cocktails, an authentic jukebox and an overall dimly lit room, Pacific Shores will take you back in time. Bird watch Next to Dog Beach is the San Diego River estuary where all types of birds gather to eat, mate and nest. It’s a birder’s paradise. The San Diego Audubon Society offers classes of varying skill level that allow people to enjoy and interact with the birds in the area, learn about their habitats and current conditions and also learn what they can do to help them. More information and how to register for a birdwatching class may be found at sandiegoaudubon.org. Beer tasting - The rustic open-air design of the Culture Brewery tasting room in Ocean Beach is made to mimic the style of the flagship location in Solana Beach. This is the second satellite tasting room for the company, it opened nearly two years ago on Newport Avenue. The Culture tasting room has 18 beers on tap and hopes to tie the community into their success by displaying local artwork and talent. The tasting room offers tastings, full pours and growler fills. - Helm’s Brewery has recently joined the collection of craft beer tasting rooms in OB on Newport Avenue. Helm’s hopes to be able to offer a large variety of beer and continue their community-first philosophy. The company has a promise to service and the tasting room staff will participate in numerous local community safety events. The tasting room has 16 beers on tap and has designed the space in line with their original nautical theme. - The Mike Hess tasting room in Ocean Beach prides itself on serving great beer and being pet and family friendly. Each Mike Hess location is uniquely different providing a different experience and representing a different part of the brewery’s story. With more than 20 beers on tap, and a vibrant fun environment, Mike Hess on Voltaire Street is both a social scene and tasting room. Unique gifts The Black Bead on Newport Avenue is a boutique filled with a wide selection of materials for jewelry making from an array of beads down to the necessary tools to complete any crafting project. The store is fully stocked with charms, beads and pendants that can add a special touch to any piece or serve as stand-alone gifts. It is easy to get lost in the rows and rows of beautifully unique gems hidden away at The Black Bead. The staff is prepared to help customers learn the basics, solve any problem and find the perfect one-of-a-kind gift. Walk the cliffs The cliffs south of Ocean Beach Pier are the perfect spot to walk, check out tide pools, and watch the waves splash against the rocks. There are a couple hidden beaches and plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. Others looking for something more calm may lay out blankets to enjoy the view and watch the sky change as the daylight fades away. Change perspectives A different way to take in the scope of the Street Fair, Ocean Beach and the pier is from above. Walk up the hill to the intersections of Newport Avenue and Guizot Street or Niagara Avenue and Guizot Street to check out the view of OB, the pier and the ocean. Go there for sunset and get a whole new perspective on the horizon. Jump off the Pier Six years ago the San Diego Junior Lifeguard Foundation started the Pier Jump. The event involves jumping off the side of the Ocean Beach Pier 35 feet into the ocean below. Initially the jump was only open to the children who were members of the Junior Lifeguard Foundation, but today it is open to the public. Find the Junior Lifeguard Foundation’s booth at the Street Fair and for $75 sign up to jump. The money helps the San Diego Junior Lifeguard Foundation fund educational programs for kids. There are two jumps this year – in July and in August. More information can be found at www.sdjgfoundation.org.
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    New condo height causes controversy in Roseville neighborhood
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Jun 23, 2016 | 2095 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Emerson Street Duplexes, currently under construction at the corner of Emerson and Evergreen streets, calls for two, three-story duplexes with garages beneath a total of four dwelling units.
    Emerson Street Duplexes, currently under construction at the corner of Emerson and Evergreen streets, calls for two, three-story duplexes with garages beneath a total of four dwelling units.
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    Some Roseville neighbors fear a new condo development that recently passed ministerial review with the city, bypassing the local planning group, will exceed the 30-foot coastal height limit. Emerson Street Duplexes, currently under construction at the corner of Emerson and Evergreen streets, calls for two, three-story duplexes with garages beneath a total of four dwelling units. Zoning on the property allows up to 19 dwelling units on a single, or consolidated lot, noted Mark Krencik, an architect and board member on the Peninsula Community Planning Board (PCPB). Krencik said a building permit was issued by the city for the Point Loma project on March 21. Not everyone, neighbors or community planners alike, are entirely happy with the project – or how it's being processed through the city's development pipeline. “We live directly across the street from this project on 1360 Evergreen St. and cannot believe what they are building there,” said neighbor Italo J. Cileu, a fourth-generation Point Loman who's family has owned their property for more than 60 years. Claiming the development resembles a “four-story building,” Cileu asked, “How did they ever get permits to build such a project? Is there no law to control the height limit?” “This is not a good fit for the community,” claimed Cileu, adding, “That area is a small, quiet community and has been for a long time. I am so afraid that once they start, they will never finish until the whole community looks like downtown San Diego.” Proposition D, a citizen initiative approved by more than 60 percent of voters in 1972, restricts the height of all buildings west of I-5 to 30 feet. Jon Linney, newly elected PCPB chair, said the duplexes may be yet another incidence of developer's pushing the envelope with coastal height restrictions. “The fine neighborhoods we have known all our lives on the Point Loma Peninsula are slipping away – silently,” said Linney. “Silently, because the 30-foot height limit is being violated frequently.” Linney claims developers are getting creative in finding ways to get around the 30-foot height restriction. “An unknown city body adopted loopholes to the Proposition D height limit in what is called 'Technical Bulletin BLDG-5-4,'” said Linney adding, “It was done without fanfare and out of public view.” Linney insists “lax zoning rules allow many projects to go up without any public hearing or community review.” Because of this, Linney noted that Roseville, one of the city’s oldest neighborhoods, “is disappearing one teardown at a time.” Noting some Point Loma zoning “allows 1,814 square-foot McMansions to be built on tiny 25-foot lots,” Linney pointed out that was the case recently at 2257 Froude St. (redevelopment recently approved by the city Planning Commission) even though the Ocean Beach Planning Board was never consulted. “Enough,” said Linney. “The public is fed up with forced density and planning by loophole. Citizens are pushing back and showing signs of being silent no more.” Pointing out the Ocean Beach Planning Board “spent a dozen years on a new community plan only to see it about to be gutted when the Planning Department decided to allow unlimited exceptions,” Linney said OBPB is now pushing back. “Thousands of citizens signed petitions and the City Council unanimously decided against unlimited exceptions,” he said. “A four-condo project known as the Carleton Four went up without any public hearing or review. When the PCPB learned of a rule violation and successfully protested, the half-built condominiums suddenly became half-built apartments. The builder will not be allowed to sell the units as condos.” Referencing the current condominium project at 3144 Emerson St. also being done without a public hearing, Linney noted the three-story project above an underground garage is “four stories, the way the public sees it” adding “the sound of silence is being replaced by a public clamor.” Linney blames density and soaring land values for “pushing buildings out to the sides of the lots and up above the height limit via loopholes. This is a Peninsula problem and the solution will require a unified Peninsula response.” Duplex developers, identified as permit holder Matthew Bartz from Pacific Enterprise Builders and property owner William Bartz, could not be reached for comment by The Beacon.
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    Sea Gods come back to bless Ocean Beach
    by MARK-ELLIOTT LUGO
    Jun 22, 2016 | 3321 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Thomas Marine employees Jody Lofton and Marcos Biard apply finishing touches to the Sea Gods sculpture on Newport Avenue. / PHOTO BY MARK-ELLIOTT LUGO
    Thomas Marine employees Jody Lofton and Marcos Biard apply finishing touches to the Sea Gods sculpture on Newport Avenue. / PHOTO BY MARK-ELLIOTT LUGO
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    Sea Gods, a colorful-but-aging sculpture that vanished months ago from its site at the foot of Newport Avenue in Ocean Beach, returned home this week after receiving a major facelift. Conceived in the mid-1990s by San Diego-based artists Matthew Welsh and the late Jill Moon as part of the San Diego’s effort to enhance neighborhoods with original art, Sea Gods depicted a colorful and whimsical array of mythical sea creatures. The 28-foot-long painted steel sculpture became an instant landmark when it was installed on a landscaping strip bordering the OB Pier parking lot. Over the years, the stylized figures representing King Neptune and Queen Mermaid, surrounded by their court of imaginative beings, offered beach visitors a light-hearted visual distraction from the drabness of the parking lot and provided a backdrop for countless snapshots and selfies. Children, especially, were attracted to the sculpture’s bright colors and Seuss-like forms. Climbing it (not recommended) was irresistible. While gods may be immortal, the sculpture was not. As time passed, the corrosive effects of salt air, harsh sunlight, vandalism, and everyday wear and tear devastated the art. Rust was literally eating away parts of Sea Gods and its vibrant, inventive color scheme was fading badly, as well. To the distress of locals, the sculpture was becoming an eyesore. Restoring Sea Gods was no easy task, requiring five months of labor by specialists from several local companies, including Thomas Marine, a custom metal fabricator based in Point Loma, and RW Little, noted for its expertise in epoxy and urethane coatings. Coincidentally, Brian Thomas, owner of Thomas Marine, and Jody Lofton, a foreman with the firm, were members of the original crew that manufactured the sculpture in 1995. “Giving Sea Gods life again is an amazing feeling,” Thomas said. Lofton, who recreated several of the sculpture’s disintegrating steel components, expects the restoration to last another generation. “Paint, anti-graffiti coatings, and welding technologies have improved substantially since the 1990s,” he explained. “The restored art should be much more durable than the original.” The $39,000 cost of the project was funded by the City of San Diego’s Commission for Arts and Culture, the same agency that commissioned Sea Gods two decades ago. According to senior public art manager Christine Jones, the commission’s responsibilities include maintaining public works of art that, like Sea Gods, are part of San Diego’s vast Civic Art Collection. Locals agree that the restoration was masterfully done and improves the neighborhood. Michael Amaya, an amateur photographer, praises the sculpture as he views it at various angles through his lens. “It’s representative of OB and the merging of the land and the water. It reflects the quirkiness of Ocean Beach,” Amaya said. Art Raya, seated on the sea wall and accompanied by his sunglasses-wearing Chihuahua, echoes Amaya’s sentiments. Sea Gods “embodies the goofy, serendipitous nature of OB,” he says. “It’s great that the sculpture has lasted as long as it has.”
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    New sign for cafe on Ocean Beach Pier
    by LAINIE FRASER
    Jun 22, 2016 | 762 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Walking on Water Cafe operator Chuck Fisher next to the new sign. / Photo by Jim Grant
    Walking on Water Cafe operator Chuck Fisher next to the new sign. / Photo by Jim Grant
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    The Walking on Water Cafe on the Ocean Beach Pier has a brand new sign thanks to the local community. The original completely blue sign on the cafe was installed in 1993. The plan was to put the sign up and have it changed not long after. That never happened. “The old cafe sign was installed ‘temporarily’ and was in much need of replacement,” said Walking on Water Cafe operator Chuck Fisher. Twenty-three years later, Johnny Fisher, a server at the Walking on Water Cafe, designed the new sign to be red, white and blue in time for the Fourth of July. There are plans to return the sign to the original blue letters at some point. Pastor Carter Moss with the Newbreak Church in Ocean Beach helped bring the volunteers together who built and painted the sign in one day. Fisher and his crew then used a plank hung off the side of the pier to hang the sign in time for the 50th anniversary of the pier. “Everyone just absolutely loves the new sign,” Fisher said.
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    Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off set for June 25
    Jun 17, 2016 | 35704 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Thousands will flock to Ocean Beach to enjoy food, drinks, chili, live music, art and great people watching at the 37th annual Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off Festival on Saturday, June 25. / Photo by Jim Grant
    Thousands will flock to Ocean Beach to enjoy food, drinks, chili, live music, art and great people watching at the 37th annual Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off Festival on Saturday, June 25. / Photo by Jim Grant
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    Thousands will flock to Ocean Beach to enjoy food, drinks, chili, live music, art and great people watching at the 37th annual Ocean Beach Street Fair and Chili Cook-Off Festival on Saturday, June 25. The free festival will include an oceanfront chili cook-off, vendor and food booths, Artists Alley, a beachside beer garden, live music and entertainment, family friendly activities, carnival rides and games, art, the Community Mural Project and more. The street fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the 4800 to 5000 blocks of Newport Avenue, along the waterfront and in the pier parking lot, and along the cross streets of Newport Avenue at Bacon Street and Cable Street. Free trolley services will run for people parking near Robb Field (every 30 minutes) and on Sea World Drive at Pacific Coast Highway (every hour) from 9:30 a.m.to 9 p.m. There will also be a free bike valet at the intersection of Bacon Street and Newport Avenue, courtesy of the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition. The highlight of this year's fest will be the 50th anniversary celebration of the OB Pier, which opened on July 2, 1966. Ocean Beach MainStreet Association will commemorate the pier with photos dating back to its inception in 1966, and information about the OB Pier’s rich history in partnership with the Ocean Beach Historical Society. Other pier activities will include a kids fishing game, photo kiosk with a lifesize photo backdrop of the pier’s opening celebration in 1966, Living Coast Discovery Center’s interactive crab display and the opportunity to sign up for the San Diego Junior Lifeguard Foundation’s annual pier jump. The Kiss tribute band will be back to rally the crowd. This time they'll support the Year of the Pier by donning their ’60s surfer best and rocking out to the Beach Boys. Attendees can stop by Rock and Roll San Diego’s booth to get a free 15-minute music lesson alongside the wild and zany Kiss tribute band, as they’re dressed in full face painting with long hair and Hawaiian shirts. The booth will also have drawings, giveaways and loads of cool stuff. The chili competition will feature more than 20 tastings from amateur entrants competing for the titles of Hottest Chili, Judges’ Award and the grand prize winner: People’s Choice Award. Chili tastings will begin at 11 a.m. and will end when contestants run out of samples. Tastings can be purchased for $2 per chili entry, or attendees can buy a master ticket for $20 to try every recipe and vote for the best. The Hodad’s Burger-Eating Competition is back by popular demand offering contestants a chance to be featured on the Hodad’s Wall of Fame at its Ocean Beach site. The Bloody Mary competition will also make a return with 15 local restaurants and bars competing for the title of Best Bloody Mary in Ocean Beach. Tickets can be purchased for $20 to sample each entry and vote for your favorites. Children and adults of all ages are welcome to purchase a $10 square to contribute to this year’s Community Mural Project. Visit the mural area on Bacon Street just south of Newport to reserve and then paint your square. After the Street Fair, the murals are sealed and installed in the community. On Cable Street, Artists Alley will feature accomplished artists and their handcrafted items. Family-friendly attractions include the Wonderland Fun Zone in the parking lot adjacent to US Bank near Sunset Cliffs Boulevard and Newport Avenue. The Zone will have a 20-foot slide, OB Express Train Ride for the little ones, Zip Line, Zorb balls, Hop ’n’ Rock, laser tag, kids games and more. There will be five stages of nonstop music throughout the day. Music genres include acoustic, rock, blues, alternative, Americana and more. For more information, visit www.oceanbeachsandiego.com.
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    News
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    Jun 09, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend
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    Arts & Entertainment
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    Jun 24, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend
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    Business
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    Obituaries
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    Jun 24, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend
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    Ocean Beach Street Fair & Chili Cook-Off Guide 2016
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