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    Junior Lifeguards learn the ropes in Mission Beach
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 22, 2019 | 2026 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Junior Lifeguards train during a session on Mission Beach.
    Junior Lifeguards train during a session on Mission Beach.
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    Student intern Ava Smith, coordinator Doug Smith, and intern coordinator Kylie Vogel.
    Student intern Ava Smith, coordinator Doug Smith, and intern coordinator Kylie Vogel.
    slideshow
    On Aug. 15, aspiring teen lifeguards learned what it’s like to actually work in the field, being schooled by Junior Lifeguard interns at Mission Beach on first-aid and water-rescue techniques.  That day, lifeguard hopefuls, in a bootcamp-style setting, got the chance to shadow Junior Lifeguard interns for a day of mentorship and learning. The Junior Lifeguard Program teaches youth ages 7 to 17 important life and safety skills, including water-rescue techniques, first aid and CPR.  It was a dress rehearsal for Junior Lifeguard Internship Program participants, many of whom will go on to become seasonal and professional lifeguards with San Diego Fire Department or other agencies. Starting out at Santa Clara Recreation Center, the day combined fun, camaraderie and hard work for 26 teen junior lifeguard interns. This year’s intern field, for the first time, was more female than male, 19 women and seven men. “We like to empower these females and give them the confidence that they really can do this job,” said San Diego Junior Lifeguard intern coordinator Lauren Leisk.   “We give them individualized lifeguard training on rescue swimming and first aid, the things they’re going to need when they try out to become lifeguards.” Added Leisk, “We go over to the beach and train them on how to rescue someone with their fins and rescue boards, train them on water observation, and on how to properly package someone on a backboard, how to splint someone off with a broken arm.” Interns are hired and paid to support City lifeguard staff during the program’s two, four-week summer aquatic education sessions. Aug. 15 was especially significant for at least one of this year’s female interns, Ava Smith from Northern California. She failed on her first attempt at becoming a Junior Lifeguard intern, but returned for a second try and succeeded. “It’s my dream job,” said Smith, adding she was “absolutely devastated,” after falling short the first time. Asked why she wants to be a lifeguard, Smith answered: “Being able to make a difference and save people’s lives. Being an intern is kind of a sneak peak at that.” Smith ran 12 miles and swam four miles that day. Other program interns had run six miles and swam two. “It’s not fun in the moment when you’re doing push ups or running a mile, but when you look back at it, you have such fond memories,” Smith said. During the day, lifeguard interns ran relay races on the beach. They also swam out in pairs to marked ocean buoys, with one swimmer “rescuing” the other and bringing them ashore. “The Junior Lifeguard Program is a unique learning opportunity for young men and women in San Diego, and our interns are an expression of that,” said Lifeguard chief James Gartland. “Junior lifeguards look up to interns and find inspiration in knowing that hard work and dedication will often yield personal growth and leadership roles.” The Junior Lifeguard Program is funded by the City of San Diego with support from the Prevent Drowning Foundation of San Diego.
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    Mission Beach woman cleans and crusades against littering at beach
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 21, 2019 | 7704 views | 7 7 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Just some of the trash Cathy Ives picks up daily at Mission Beach. / Courtesy photo
    Just some of the trash Cathy Ives picks up daily at Mission Beach. / Courtesy photo
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    Cathy Ives is mad as hell and she’s not going to take it anymore. What she’s upset about is trash and irresponsible behavior at Mission Beach. “I am done with the amount of drinking on the beach,” said Ives, who cleans up beach trash daily from the jetty to Belmont Park oceanfront. “Friday morning I picked up more than 100 glass beer bottles. Sunday I picked up more than 50 glass beer bottles at Belmont Park. And there were five to seven illegal fires still burning, strewn with liquor bottles, glass, aluminum and plastic. It is too much.” Noting glass bottles of any kind are forbidden everywhere on the beach any time, Ives added bottles and trash from fires are just a part of overall beach pollution. Ives tried reporting beach clean-up issues on the City’s Get It Done App, but was not satisfied with the response.“They (city) said it needs to go to the police,” she said. “But there’s no place to put it, I reported it under illegal dumping, and they (police) said it needs to go someplace else.” Ives was told at a Mission Beach Town Council meeting by a police representative that SDPD does not have the resources to do beach cleanup. Ives has been complaining to various government agencies about beach cleanup problems for the past 18 months and continues to document the issues providing photos. “I have a whole Facebook album just devoted to this,” she said. Ives is requesting that the City enforce its laws requiring: • No drinking on the beach; • No smoking on the beach; • No glass bottles on the beach; • No fires directly on sand on the beach; • Enforcement of littering laws. “Public safety is our top priority,” said José Ysea, supervising public information officer for City of San Diego. “During the summer months, the City of San Diego beefs up police and lifeguard presence in our beach areas. With 17 miles of coastline our personnel work diligently to enforce all laws and rules along our beaches and bays. “As in any of our other communities, we not only encourage, but rely on the public to be our eyes and ears when they see or hear something wrong. If they witness anyone in distress or see a dangerous situation, we ask that they call 9-1-1 immediately,” Ysea said. “If they have non-emergency issues, we ask that they use our Get-it-Done app available on Android and Apple devices, as well as at sandiego.gov/getitdone,” Ysea said. “As part of Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s CleanSD initiative, we now have clean-up crews working 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This has sped up our response time for reports relating to trash and debris.” Ives has some recommendations for how beach enforcement should be improved.  “The number one thing is better signage,” Ives said. “I am advocating they enforce the ordinances and put up big signs saying, ‘No drinking, no glass. no styrofoam.’” Ives also cautioned that Mission Beach is not being patrolled at the right times. “The police need to start patrolling on the sand from the jetty to north Mission Beach from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m., not 6 a.m.,” she argued. “That is ‘not’ when the action is happening. They should be giving tickets, fines. Pointing out styrofoam is now banned because it’s not biodegradable, Ives noted the material is winding up in boogie boards nonetheless. “There is no enforcement,” she said. “Stores should have stopped selling those, as well as styrofoam ice chests.” Concerning plastic straws, which state law is gradually phasing out requiring them to be requested in restaurants, Ives noted, “There are more straws on the beach now than ever.” Concerning fires, Ives said: “It’s illegal to put them directly in the sand. They need to be in a portable device or in a fire pit. Due to the still-warm fires, I have had to ‘encircle' the fires with bottles or toys.There is nobody to put out the illegal still-burning fires.” Ives noted the jetty has 10 illegal fire pits strewn with trash. “I can't even tell you how bad Bonita Point is,” she said. “Between the people sleeping in cars, the drunks sleeping on the beach … it is awful.” Ives added the Mission Beach jetty has become especially troublesome. “Rats are out in full force at the jetty,” she warned. “You got rid of the cats that killed the rats. Do you know that hepatitis A can be spread this way?” Worst of all, said Ives: “There is broken glass everywhere – on the beach, in the parking lots, in the picnic areas, on the boardwalk. Another resident in less than a week picked up more than 200 pounds of glass, mainly beer bottles in less than a mile. He has been living here for years and states it is the worst he has ever seen.” Added Ives: “The trashcans are filled with glass bottles. The tide line is strewn with glass bottles and cigarettes, food wrappers, and clothing. I’ve washed more than 900 beach towels, some from hotels, and blankets left on the beach and donated them, as well as 115 beach toys, all left behind.” Responding to clean-up complaints from Mission Beach residents, District 2 Councilmember Dr. Jen Campbell said: “Keeping our beaches clean is a prime concern for my office. We’ve been in contact with Environmental Services to ensure that the additional Clean SD money that was approved this year in the city’s budget is focused on our beaches and boardwalks.”
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    Lee Silber
    |
    5 Hours Ago
    Thank you Cathy for all you are doing. It's appreciated.
    Roberto787
    |
    8 Hours Ago
    SD used to be a beautiful city, America's finest city. What happened? Though I miss it sometimes, I'm very happy to have moved to another city/state. I do not see any improvement in the near future. Every time I visit, it seems it's getting worse. From the trash, homeless population, ridiculous parking fees. It reminds me of Waikiki, HI where it's populated by tourists, not the locals. Sad really.
    Hector Sanchez
    |
    2 Hours Ago
    That's fine...stay wherever you are at and we'll gladly stay here.
    GNK1096
    |
    2 Hours Ago
    Having grown up in MB from 63-77, MB is FAR cleaner now then it was back then. Still needs work, and good on Cathy Ives for trying to make it even better.
    Jimena Canasavi
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    10 Hours Ago
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    14 Hours Ago
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    Petals by the Beach uses donation to spread kindness through flowers
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 20, 2019 | 2897 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Some of the recipients of free flowers at Petals by the Beach.
    Some of the recipients of free flowers at Petals by the Beach.
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    Some of the recipients of free flowers at Petals by the Beach.
    Some of the recipients of free flowers at Petals by the Beach.
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    A beach florist got an unusual contribution and request recently: $500 from a Pacific Beach woman to pass out flowers to random passers-by. “We have never seen such generosity and kindness,” enthused Melissa Cummings, co-owner, along with her mom, of Petals by the Beach at 1470 Garnet Ave. “She wanted to spread kindness to the people of her community, to show that there are still kind people out there despite our world problems. It was enough to pay for flowers every day for two weeks. That was pretty cool.” The donation came from Pacific Beach resident Thera Storm, who is a grief counselor. Storm said the recent back-to-back mass shootings in Texas and Ohio, that left at least 31 people dead, prompted her to do something extraordinary. “After those two shootings within 13 hours of each other, I noticed the reaction on Facebook was just so scary and negative,” said Storm. “The next morning I sat down and thought, ‘What could I do that’s positive?’ Then I had the idea of donating money to a local flower shop.” Storm was almost afraid of the reaction she’d get from Cummings, whom she didn’t know, when she approached her with her unorthodox plan.  But Storm shouldn’t have worried. “She donated a generous amount at our shop for us to pass out flowers to complete strangers,” said Cummings. “She wasn’t paying it forward. In her words, ‘She wanted to spread kindness to the masses.’” Cummings took Storm’s money and honored her request. “For two weeks I’ve been passing out flowers every day to random people walking by of all different ages,” Cummings said, adding she wasn’t embarrassed about it.  “I just said, ‘We had a customer recently donate a significant amount of money, and we’re spreading kindness and happiness.’” The reaction to Storm’s flower donation has been uplifting. “People said that is so nice, we need more of that,” said Cummings, adding, “A few people even cried. I began taking pictures (of recipients) and putting them on our Facebook and Instagram pages.” “I feel like I had a very small, passive role,” said Storm of her gesture. “All of the work has been done by Melissa.” It’s Storm's practice to take 10 percent of every paycheck and stash it away to do something special at a later date.  Asked if being a grief counselor factors into her humanitarianism, Storm said, “I’m just very aware that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. And to have that moment of randomly being blessed with some flowers, that just helps folks who are sad. “I love helping people and watching them feel like I removed a backpack of bricks from them. I love flowers. Flowers was a nice gesture. I just hope they have a positive impact on people.”
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    Local legends inducted into San Diego's Surfing Hall of Fame
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 20, 2019 | 14639 views | 1 1 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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    Big tom
    |
    August 21, 2019
    Hi, I never see Mike Doyles name, why?
    Scooter fury hits fever pitch in Pacific Beach
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Aug 09, 2019 | 21207 views | 4 4 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Scooter riders in Pacific Beach. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Scooter riders in Pacific Beach. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Momentum continues to build against scooters, as District 1 Councilmember Barbara Bry has called for a moratorium on them, while a Pacific Beach resident has initiated an online petition drive to ban them, which netted more than 300 signatures in 48 hours. “San Diegans deserve a safe, unobstructed and accessible public right-of-way,” said Bry. “Electric scooters have posed challenge after challenge on our City sidewalks, boardwalks and pedestrian walking areas. “In May, the City Council approved a permitting and regulatory program that went into effect July 1. We believed these rules could help reestablish order on our sidewalks,” Bry said. “Instead, we are left with companies willfully ignoring staging restrictions and geofencing requirements.” Meanwhile, PB resident Bill Zent has launched scooterban.com, with its petition drive to “neuter” scooters. States Zent’s website: “Restore sanity to our streets and sidewalks. Support Barbara Bry's proposed ordinance to ban scooters. Scooters are injuring the riders, pedestrians and pose a real hazard to everyone trying to have a casual walk at the beach or downtown or anywhere.” As of Aug. 5, Zent was more than halfway toward his goal of presenting 1,000 signatures in favor of banning scooters to the City Council. Zent gave a laundry list of reasons for his neuter scooter crusade. “They are being leased to underage minors and are a hazard to motorists and pedestrians,” he said. “There are so many of them you can’t even walk down the sidewalk without having to pick them up and move them… I saw a guy on a scooter the other day tandem riding with his baby on his chest. Enough is enough. “Personally, I think they need to go,” he said. “Even the corrals aren’t working. They’re full with all different kinds of scooters and bikes. Scooters are supposed to be for last-mile transportation. If people want to own a scooter, they can buy one for $200.” Excerpts from comments on Zent’s website: “This is not the transportation solution we need at the beach … It’s time for us to force these irresponsible companies to abide by laws and common sense … Ban this nuisance … I have neighbors who woke up to scooter corals directly in front of their front doors. I would love to have one of these painted in front of our councilpersons’ homes, see how fast they act on the issue … They are dangerous and an eyesore … Scooters are a menace to society and an absolute blight.” Ed Gallagher, a member of Pacific Beach Planning Group, speaking for himself, claimed to have been Zent’s first anti-scooter petition signer. “The idea of a ban/moratorium is clearly tapping into a great deal of local frustration on this issue from PB residents and businesses,” Gallagher said. “Not a permanent ban. It’s a moratorium until we work out how to do it safely and responsibly. In my personal opinion, the City should draft an RFP (request for proposals) and solicit bids to operate as we do with other public utilities.” Added Gallagher: “The City drafts a contract with terms that fit our needs and companies agree to those terms and, if they fail to comply, they lose the contract. What’s so hard about that?” In response to Bry’s call for a scooter “moratorium,” and some residents wanting them banned, City press secretary Christina Di Leva Chadwick said, “We believe the new scooter regulations allow the industry to evolve responsibly and gives the City the power to hold operators accountable by revoking permits for those that don’t follow the rules. “Given these regulations have been in place for only several weeks, additional time is necessary to determine if the laws in place are having the desired effect,” Di Leva Chadwick said. “The City continues to stress the need for maximum regulatory compliance, including geofencing, speed limits and staging.” Concerning alleged non-compliance of permit conditions by some scooter companies, Di Leva Chadwick said: “The City is actively monitoring operators to ensure maximum compliance of the law. While several operators have taken proactive steps to get into compliance following receipt of a notice of violation, the City has found, through field testing and evaluation, that one or more operators are still not in compliance. The City is now moving forward with a permit revocation process for one operator, and a notice of violation has been levied on a fifth operator.” Concerning problems/complaints the mayor’s office is getting about scooters these days, Di Leva Chadwick replied, “Geofencing, corral staging and user-compliance issues such as speed limits, double riding and other existing street laws." Regarding the Pacific Beach resident who has started an online petition drive calling for scooters to be banned all together, Di Leva Chadwick said: “Mayor Faulconer has previously supported, and continues to support, a scooter ban on the boardwalk. Unfortunately, the City Council did not see the need for such a measure and voted it down more than a year ago. The mayor welcomes the City Council’s reconsideration of a boardwalk ban at any time.”
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    Saarstol
    |
    August 10, 2019
    People are so stubborn and resistant to change. It’s like the automobile got invented and 20% of the people are pissed because the cars are scaring their horses and just go “too fast”.

    On demand, Any point to any point transportation, is revolutionary. The same way Uber opened up commerce as people could safely and inexpensively venture out and also cut down drunk driving, the scooters in their original form got people out of cars (and Uber’s), which cuts traffic and parking and gets people walking instead of driving everywhere (which is the butt of jokes about Californians).

    Point blank, the “quality of life” of living at the beach skyrocketed for 80% of the population & for tourists (which greatly support the economy and business) with the introduction of scooters. But a vocal minority of curmudgeons cry “I hate change” and take efforts to kill it. So they reduce the speed to 8mph (which is stupidly slow - why not like a more reasonable 12mph) and then destroy the any point to any point part of it with corals and no parking areas with no way to know where they are or aren’t (and in essence kill the entire convenience of the concept). So scooters are dead already with these moronic regulations, so they’ll disappear on their own because they are unusable now anyways. So the whining 20% or maybe 5% kill the future, and kill progress in transportation. Because bumper to bumper traffic and no parking and pollution and auto deaths provide such a great quality of life already. What a shortsighted joke.

    A progressive, forward looking city, one that will thrive in the coming future, not languish as the world changes around it and leaves it behind, would have done something more like this...

    Set a sensible speed geofence like 12mph. Ban all scooters except for one company that wins a bid with the city - any other scooter found gets immediately pulled and thrown away like garbage on the street. Then the select scooter company has to brand with the city in mind and price to allow for job creation of local “repositioners” to clear scooters left in irresponsible places. So users pay $.20/ minute instead of $.15 and the “trash” problem of scooters thrown everywhere is addressed. And the city heavily taxes the scooter activity, maybe $.05/minute to create a fund to add bike lanes everywhere to prepared for the coming change of transportation to electric scooters and bikes, which will greatly alleviate car congestion, parking problems, and pollution.
    Dave Fontaine
    |
    August 12, 2019
    How does a nuicence like these scooters help the environment? Many people just use them for "fun" at the beach. At least 50% under 16 and unlicensed. 0% wearing helmets.

    I've seen at least 1 to 3 accidents a day. Several involving head trauma and ambulances. The high-speeds, (and dangerous at low too)The upright posture of the rider, position of the hands, electric torque and small wheels on irregular surfaces. Do the Physics or as a ER Doctor.

    They are made in China and have batteries. Not very environmental The average life of one these I've been told is under 2 month. I believe that. People are actively destroying them to regain our sidewalks, driveways and everywhere they are littered.

    They have motors. The sidewalks and boardwalks are not where they belong. The Laws are written as "engines" not motors. It was an oversight that I hope is remedied soon.

    Add to many riding are overweight. They should be looking for solutions to their problem, not an easy ride. Buy a Bike.
    Elfi Segal
    |
    August 09, 2019
    Where can I get a petition ? I will gladly walk my neighborhood to get signatures.
    bill zent
    |
    August 09, 2019
    www.scooterban.com
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    Opera NEO to perform three main-stage operas within its summer festival
    Opera NEO, a San Diego program for young opera singers, will perform three operas as a part of its annual summer festival. The program’s first opera, “La Cenerentola,” strips the classic fairytale ...
    Published - Thursday, August 01
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