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May 2015 Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

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New 'Congressional Watch' column Keeps an eye on our five representatives By Andy Cohen Welcome to the inaugural San Diego “Congressional Watch,” where each month we’ll be taking a look at what the region’s five members of Congress have been up to in doing the business of their constituents — or not doing the business of their constituents. We’ll review any significant announcements, important votes, and policy statements by each member.

See Michelangelo’s work

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Mission Federal ArtWalk celebrated its 31st year April 25 and 26. Adelman Fine Art was one of the newest additions to both this year’s sprawling art festival and Little Italy’s burgeoning art district. Shown in Adelman’s ArtWalk booth just steps from its Kettner Boulevard gallery, is (left) local artist Ellen Dieter, who is represented by the gallery, and co-owner Nicole Adelman Brewer, both surrounded by Dieter’s work. Dieter was one of ArtWalk’s featured artists for 2015. Watch for a profile on Adelman Fine Art and its artists in our next issue, out June 5. (Photo by Morgan M. Hurley) Freudian conversations

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Puesto perfect tacos

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car2go’s East Village ‘bee hive’ is a finely tuned machine Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

car2go is migrating their fleet to Gen3 EVs.

Part II of a series Tucked away behind the pristine, cyan blue and white lobby of Downtown’s car2go headquarters in East Village, is a mash up of industry and future; creativity and environmental science; and the steady hum of busy employees. This is where all the magic happens. While its aesthetics have won both awards and the envy of others, car2go’s operations and administrative offices are rarely seen by the public or their customers; however, should a current or prospective customer enter the Ninth Street lobby and ring the bell, a member of the company’s fleet team will appear in seconds to assist. “This space has had many lives,” said San Diego location

see car2go, page 18

(Courtesy car2go)

We’ll begin the first installment with Darrell Issa (R-D49). In a story published April 14, The New York Times reported that in a letter dated December 2012, Issa — still the controversial chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee at the time — had asked then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about her use of a personal email account. Anonymous congressional sources provided the Times with a copy of the letter written by Issa, along with the response from the State Department, dated March 2013, nearly two months after Clinton had left office. “Have you or any senior agency official ever used a personal email account to conduct official business,” Issa wrote. He received no reply from Clinton. The State Department’s response only contained a description of the department’s email policies. Issa also recently expressed his dismay over Saudi Arabian military strikes against the Iranian backed

see Congress, page 7

Flagship Cruises celebrates 100 years on San Diego Bay By Kai Oliver-Kurtin

Fashion for pups

Index Briefs…..............……3 Opinion…..............……6 Politics…................7 F inance.............…17 Calender.............…22

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With humble beginnings as a small ferry company 100 years ago, Flagship Cruises & Events is now one of San Diego’s largest cruise companies. Still offering ferry services today between Downtown San Diego and Coronado, they have since expanded to include harbor tours, whale watching excursions, brunch and dinner cruises, and turbo-charged jet boat rides. To celebrate this milestone, a free centennial anniversary party will be held on May 2 from 2 – 6 p.m. aboard the Flagship fleet, docked along the Embarcadero at 990 N. Harbor Drive. Guests can enjoy free Patriot jet boat rides throughout the afternoon, live music, commemorative photos, light food, and samples from craft breweries and wineries. A limited number of party guests will be able to sign up for a free harbor cruise on the Quiet Heart yacht that evening. A children’s activity area will also offer face painting, balloon making and a magician. “The party is basically an open house to introduce our fleet to San

see Flagship, page 9

Flagship, which began as Star Boat Company, is celebrating its 100th birthday with free rides and entertainment. (Courtesy Flagship Cruises)


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



The Grove on Juniper in South Park will celebrate Independent Bookstore Day with an array of special events, authors, new merchandise and free festivities. Following the runaway success of last year’s California Bookstore Day, The Grove is joining with similar locally‐owned shops on May 2 for a country‐wide celebration of books and independent bookstores. Anne Mery, co‐owner of The Grove, said customers of her 12‐year‐old South Park emporium have inspired the plans for this year’s Bookstore Day. “San Diegans especially love food, travel, crafts and urban gardening, so we’re featuring those interests,” she said. Novelist Belinda Jones (“The Traveling Tea Shop”) and Maria Desiderata Montana (“San Diego Chef’s Table” and “San Diego Italian Food: A Culinary History of Little Italy and Beyond,”) will talk about their books and new interests with San Diego foodies. Cookbooks and recipes by award‐winning San Diego Chef Deborah Schneider will also be featured, along with tastes of her new salsas and moles. Bhavna Mehta of Hansa Arts and UCSD will lead a book arts project workshop, demonstrating alternative ways to tell a story. A workshop on urban sketching and the drawing of food will be led by San Diegan Angie Brenner, who wrote and illustrated “Anatolian Days and Nights: My Love Affair With Turkey.” The Grove will donate proceeds from select Bookstore Day sales and will collect donations from customers to support Dorcas House/Vida Joven (,

services for vulnerable children and families in Tijuana, Mexico. The full schedule of Independent Bookstore Day events will be published on The Grove’s website at


Ace Parking and BluCar have partnered together to create an on-demand parking services app in North Park, Hillcrest, La Jolla and Little Italy for iOS. The service will be available from Thursday through Saturday from 5 – 11 p.m. Customers choose a drop off point in specified zones, which signals an Ace Parking attendant. After meeting with the customer, the attendant will park the car and retrieves the vehicle once the customer selects a return location with the BluCar app, which should be less than 10 minutes. The app is capable of tracking your vehicle in real-time. It also offers a pay and tip system directly through the app similar to Uber or Lyft.“The idea behind the BluCar App is to offer customers virtual parking at the front door of their destination so they don’t have to search for parking or walk very far from the lot,” stated Michael Dee, co-founder and vice president of sales and business development for BluCar, in a press release. “The app is especially appealing to individuals who do not want or are unable to walk very far.” The app can be downloaded at bit. ly/1CuWD3w or by visiting blucar. com.


Urban Discovery Academy (UDA), San Diego’s first Downtown K-8 charter school, has received its first major gift to support the

launch of its new East Village campus. Jeff Silberman, on behalf of Carleton Management Inc., has committed $125,000, a gift that was announced at a March 26 corporate sponsorship event.With a scheduled opening in September, the UDA campus at 14th and F streets will offer a high-quality STEAM infused curriculum with the benefits of proximity to the downtown public library and the convenience of nearby trolley stops. The campus is specifically designed to advance the Academy’s three founding areas of distinction: strengthening project-based education, returning arts education to the classroom, and encouraging families to live Downtown. Silberman said he was confident that other benefactors would step forward to match his family’s $125,000 pledge. “We are honored to partner with UDA in the development of their new campus in the East Village,” Silberman said in a statement. “UDA is an important community asset in the ongoing evolution of the East Village and is so worthy of our community support. We look forward to a longstanding relationship with UDA and are excited to welcome them to the neighborhood.” Urban Discovery Academy was established in 2008 as a model charter school that would fully utilize the vast resources of the Downtown urban landscape. Now in its seventh year of operation, the Academy is currently located in temporary quarters at 730 45th St. Student API test scores are in the high 800s, and UDA educational experiences include an enriched visual and performing arts program and community service opportunities. To learn more about the Fundraising efforts by The

see Briefs, page 6

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


Michelangelo’s work comes to Downtown

(above) Art curator Alexander Salazar with the 1:1 Michelangelo replica in his gallery (Courtesy Alexander Salazar Fine Art); the bust of Virgin Mary and Salazar’s “Wall of Angels” (Photo by Delle Willett) By Delle Willett | Contributor Five hundred years ago, Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarotti Simoni unveiled what came to be regarded as one of the world’s great masterpieces of inspired art and perhaps the most beautiful sculpture ever created. Called the Pietà, the sculpture depicts the Virgin Mary holding the body of Jesus Christ after his crucifixion, death, and removal from the cross, before he was placed in the tomb.

It was both the consummate expression of Michelangelo’s artistic abilities and an embodiment of the divine inspiration that guided his work. To see the Pietà each year, millions of people travel to St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. For security purposes, the statue is enclosed in glass and visitors can’t get ver y close, let alone touch it. The challenge is to even view it all while there, since you are competing for a peek with the vast numbers of others tr ying to see it, gathered in all directions.

For those who don’t have the time or money to travel, a new opportunity has presented itself to see the Pietà with none of the Basilica’s restrictions. They can look at it for as long as they want; they can pray; they can touch; they can photograph; they can even sketch. A posthumous, precise Pietà has been recreated 1:1 in cast Carrera marble from a Vaticanauthorized mold of the original, and is on display through 2015 at Alexander Salazar Fine Art Gallery at 1040 Seventh Ave. in Downtown San Diego. Salazar’s gallery was chosen by Arte Divine, the exclusive sculpture licensee of the Vatican Observatory Foundation, which facilitates the placement of sublime sculptures in settings where they can enlighten the minds and touch the lives and hearts of the faithful. “We selected Alexander Salazar Fine Art as the venue of choice in San Diego to place these marvelous works of art, in part because of Salazar’s knowledge and passion for the works of Michelangelo and other masters, and also because we felt his gallery provided the perfect Downtown location,” said Michael Jacobson, vice president of corporate relations at Arte Divine. “It has been an absolute plea- sure to work with him, and we look forward to providing him with additional Michelangelo masterpieces in the future,” Jacobson said. “It’s been interesting having the Pietà in my galler y,” Salazar said. “I’ve had people coming in, kneeling and praying. So this is more than just an ar t galler y now, it’s a place people are coming to meditate. “To me, this just changes the entire feeling of an art gallery, and that comes directly from having such an important work of art here,” Salazar added. While a student, Salazar lived in Florence, Italy, surrounded by art created by Michelangelo, Botticelli, Bernini and others. He also holds a master’s degree in theology and art from Harvard and a second masters in sociology and art from Boston College. As an art dealer, Salazar said when this project first came to him he wasn’t interested, because religious art is difficult to sell. But his personal interest has always been in religion and religious art. “So I was motived to share my art experience with people because I was very lucky and blessed to be living in Florence and traveling throughout Italy,” he said. “I thought that with my 18 years of working as an art dealer it finally made sense to have this work in my gallery. I felt like I was preparing for this throughout my career. So it’s a blessing in itself to me and to the gallery” Also on exhibit is the a bust of the Madonna, which captures the compassion and serenity in Mary’s face with so much grace that, half a millennium later, the vision of it continues to inspire viewers. Behind the bust, Salazar created a memorial wall called the

“Wall of Angels,” and encourages people to bring photos of their loved ones who have passed to place on the wall. They do and they stay to pray. “What I also find interesting is that people who have vision problems come in and touch the Pietà, feel the movement, the curves and shapes — there’s a connection happening that’s beyond whether or not it’s the actual thing,” Salazar said, who admits he gets goose bumps whenever he thinks about these occasions. In all, 100 replicas of the Pietà are being made, and are mostly purchased by benefactors who give them to organizations such as churches and schools. Each Pietà is priced at $250,000. Salazar, 42 and originally from Houston, Texas, opened his own gallery five years ago on the corner of Broadway and Seventh Street in Downtown San Diego. His current gallery is around the corner at 1040 Seventh St., where he mainly works with private collectors, architects and designers. Recently he has been working with local artists with the intention of supporting the local art community. Alexander Salazar’s current gallery hours are by appointment but he would love to have people come in groups to see the Pietà and the Bust of the Madonna, and other art in the gallery, including copies of the Medici art. He can be contacted at 619531-8996 or as@alexandersalazar finear —Delle Willett is a PR consultant and a freelance journalist. She does pro-bono work for organizations that empower women and work to end world hunger. Reach her at

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



BRIEFS UDA Foundation, visit its website at or to learn more about Urban Discovery Academy, visit its website at

123 Camino De La Reina Ste. 202 East San Diego, CA 92108 (619) 519-7775 Twitter: @sddowntownnews



A different kind of mother’s day gift This Mother’s Day, I’d like to thank all the expectant mothers who plan to donate their baby’s umbilical cord blood to a public cord blood bank, such as San Diego Cord Blood Bank. Your compassion means that someone with a life-threatening disease may get a second chance at life. Donated cord blood that meets the requirements can be listed on the Be The Match Registry® and made available to anyone who needs a blood stem cell transplant. Cord blood, usually disposed of after birth, is rich in blood-forming cells and can be used to help treat more than 70 different diseases, including leukemia and other blood cancers. Cord blood donations are especially needed from African American and Asian communities, as patients within these communities have difficulty finding donor matches. There is no cost to donate to a public cord blood bank and donation is safe for moms and babies. Cord blood is collected right after birth and does not change the labor or delivery. There is no greater gift than the gift of life. Since its inception, the San Diego Cord Blood Bank has banked 2,100 cord blood units from generous moms in San Diego and surrounding areas and shipped 149 units for transplants, but more donations are needed to help save more lives. Visit to learn more. Happy Mother’s Day! —Robert J. Tressler, vice president, cell biology and therapy, San Diego Blood Bank, via email

Wanting accountability First, what happened to all of the funds reported in the 2012 Grand Jury report to have been sitting idly waiting for earmarked special interest projects? [See “Downtown News Briefs: City announces plan for year-round homeless shelter.”] News articles months ago indicated that such money still hasn’t been unlocked. Why wasn’t that repurposed before we went further into debt? Second, why are we funding new buildings for books in a digital age before we build affordable housing? I agree that a digital book is not the same as a physical book. However, there are plenty of already built beautiful places in San Diego to browse physical books. In fact, by going over budget on the new library, we have created a very expensive site already. Meanwhile there aren’t places to house the people who live on the streets. Let’s stop warehousing people and start warehousing our city’s physical collection of books. Spend the money slated for new library buildings to fund digital books and services for the homeless. Let’s create small WiFi/Internet centers or cafes for those who don’t have access. Let’s use bookmobiles and existing renovated/new libraries as both spaces to browse and a way to pick up physical books. Soon drones can deliver these physical books. Then let’s sell the old properties and spend the proceeds and the money slated for new libraries on our most vulnerable citizens instead. —Shannon Biggs, via

The San Diego Ballet Guild will host their Silver Anniversar y Gala on May 9 at 5 p.m. in the newly renovated Westin San Diego Gaslamp Quarter. This elegant affair will raise the much-needed money to help support the ballet’s innovative performances, educational programming and community outreach. The Gala is chaired by L ynell Sanchez and Carolyn Lara, two founding members of the San Diego Ballet Guild who are enthusiastic supporters of San Diego Ballet and San Diego School of Ballet. “During the event, guests will enjoy beautiful ballet performed by past and present San Diego Ballet dancers,” Lara said in a statement. “San Diego Ballet’s Artistic Director, Javier Velasco, has created something truly special for this evening.” Sanchez said organizers hope attendees wear something silver to commemorate the anniversar y and though black ties are encouraged for men, they are optional. The evening will begin with a reception in the Garden Terrace where guests will have the opportunity to mingle with dancers and fellow guests under the stars and bid in the silent auction. The cocktail reception will be followed by a dinner and dessert in the San Diego Ballroom and a live auction featuring unique items and travel experiences. Tickets are $125 per person or $1,000 for a table of 10. To purchase tickets or for more information, email L ynell Sanchez at, visit the website at, or call the San Diego Ballet office at 619-294-7374.


The San Diego Padres and the club’s flagship radio station, The Mighty 1090, have teamed up with U.S. Bank for Padres Wednesdays, featuring a complete lineup of Padres guests throughout the day’s programming each Wednesday. Launched April 22, each Padres Wednesday will star t with the “Executive Repor t” first thing in the morning on The Dan Sileo Show. This weekly update will rotate between Padres Executive Chairman Ron Fowler and Padres President and CEO Mike Dee, and will air at approximately 7:35 a.m. “Lunch with the Manager” on The Darren Smith Show will feature a weekly inter view with Padres Manager Bud Black, airing at approximately 2 p.m. That will be followed by the “Front Of fice Repor t” on Scott and BR at 3:35 p.m. Each week, Scott Kaplan and Billy Ray Smith will hear from rotating guests from the Padres front of fice, including EVP/General Manager A.J. Preller and other members of the club’s baseball operations and leadership teams. “From this programming, our fans can expect regular, comprehensive updates from all areas of the club,” said Padres SVP/Chief Marketing Of ficer Wayne Par tello in a statement. “As we build upon our Padres par tnership, we always keep in mind how to provide our audience with more behind-the-scenes insight about their favorite team,” Mighty 1090 President Mike Glickenhaus said. “Padres Wednesday creates another destination day on Mighty 1090 to deliver on that commitment.” v

PUBLISHER David Mannis (619) 961-1951

ART DIRECTOR Vincent Meehan (619) 961-1961

EDITOR Morgan M. Hurley (619) 961-1960

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SALES & MARKETING DIRECTOR Mike Rosensteel (619) 961-1958

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Toni G. Atkins Charlene Baldridge Diana Cavagnaro Andy Cohen Christopher Gomez Kris Michell Kai Oliver-Kurtin Johnny McDonald Alex Owens Frank Sabatini Jr. Taylor Schulte Dave Schwab Delle Willett Carol Williams COPY EDITOR Dustin Lothspeich WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA Jen Van Tieghem, x118 EDITORIAL INTERN KC Stanfield

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OPINIONS/LETTERS: San Diego Downtown News encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email either to morgan@ and include your phone number and address for verification. We reserve the right to edit letters for brevity and accuracy. Letters and guest editorials do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or staff. SUBMISSIONS/NEWS TIPS: Press releases and story ideas are welcomed. Send press releases, tips, photos or story ideas to morgan@ For breaking news and investigative story ideas contact the editor by phone or email. DISTRIBUTION: San Diego Downtown News is distributed free on the first Friday of every month. COPYRIGHT 2015. All rights reserved




Mission Hills resident (center) Vera Falus-Lorrel was honored by the Assembly in April (Courtesy Office of Toni G. Atkins)

Notes from Toni Toni G. Atkins | Assembly Speaker California is now in its fourth year of drought. Some 1,760 water wells have run dry. The Sierra Nevada snowpack is historically low. At the state level, we’ve instituted mechanisms to respond to this serious issue. Last month, the governor announced his executive order to save water, increase conservation enforcement, streamline government response and invest in new technologies to respond to California’s continuing drought. The order includes: • A 25 percent reduction in water usage. • Replacing 50 million square feet of lawns and turf with drought-tolerant landscaping. • Creating a temporary consumer rebate program that replaces old appliances with more waterand energy-efficient models. • Having local water agencies adjust rates to implement conservation pricing • Increasing enforcement so that water isn’t being used illegally. At the Legislature, we passed emergency drought-relief bills, which included: More than $1 billion for drought relief and infrastructure projects to make the state’s water infrastructure more resilient. Acceleration of $272 million from Proposition 1 Water Bond funding for safe drinking water and water recycling from the governor’s January budget proposal. Acceleration of drought-related expenditures from the governor’s January budget proposal augmented by $27.2 million in targeted additional expenditures ($128 million total), including efforts to implement the Water Action Plan and provide direct assistance to workers and communities impacted by drought. Here in San Diego, we are fortunate. Our water is flowing still. But, there are cities and towns like East Porterville where water is being driven in for people to drink, to shower and to cook. We need to change the way we think about water and conservation. Saving water isn’t a temporary solution to California’s drought; water conservation needs to be a permanent, conscious effort by all of us. Here’s some easy ways to conserve: Turn off the water while lathering in the shower or brushing your teeth. Defrost food in your refrigerator instead of under running water. Opt for water- and energyefficient appliances.

Monitor your sprinkler system to make sure you’re watering only the grass and not the surrounding areas. Soak dishes instead of letting the water run to remove food debris. Use smaller pots to cook. It will encourage you to use less water and help retain more nutrients. Take advantage of rebates and replace older toilets with waterefficient models. Also, flush only when necessary. Use a broom instead of a hose to clean outside areas. Check your monthly water bill for unusual changes. Sudden spikes in usage can be the sign of a water leak. Around the District and the Capitol I adjourned an Assembly session last month in the memory of Taylor Alesana and Sage David, two local LGBT teens who took their own lives. You can find a list of youth counselling and suicide prevention hotlines in the May edition of my e-Newsletter … Congratulations to the New Children’s Museum, which has been named by USA Today as one of our city’s 10 best museums and by as one of the eight most entertaining children’s museums in the U.S. … the Assembly honored Vera FalusLorell of Mission Hills as the 78th Assembly District’s Holocaust Survivor of the Year. The native of Budapest has lived in San Diego for 25 years. —Toni G. Atkins is the Speaker of the California State Assembly. For more information, please visit her website, where you can sign up for her e-newsletter or get the latest news on legislation and other activities. You also may follow her on Twitter, @toniatkins.v

Houthi Rebels in Yemen, taking the opportunity to criticize the Obama administration for the ongoing nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+ powers. “Months of fairy tale negotiations and appeasement by this administration have led Iran to believe that it can act with impunity on an international scale,” Issa stated in a press release. “Now, more than ever, it is clear that any real settlement with Iran is impossible, and the president must acknowledge this fact.” It is unclear what, if any, actions short of direct U.S. military strikes against Iran Issa would support. Issa has struggled to regain the notoriety (or infamy?) he enjoyed during his tumultuous and largely unproductive term as the head of the House Oversight Committee. Duncan Hunter (R-D50) expressed outrage last week over the death of Dr. Warren Weinstein, an American aid worker being held hostage by al Qaeda in Pakistan/ Afghanistan border region and killed, President Obama revealed, in a January drone strike against senior operatives of the terror organization. “Warren Weinstein did not have to die. His death is further evidence of the failures in communication and coordination between government agencies tasked with recovering Americans in captivity — and the fact that he’s dead, as a result, is absolutely tragic,” Hunter said in a statement. Hunter also praised the efforts of Army Special Forces officer Lt. Col. Jason Amerine, who had been leading the efforts to recover Americans held hostage in the region. Juan Vargas (D-D51) joined Rep. Raul Ruiz of Palm Desert in petitioning the U.S. Department of the Interior to designate “as much of the Salton Sea as appropriate for renewable energy development,” reported the Desert Sun. The Salton Sea covers portions of both Congressmen’s districts. In the letter to Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, Vargas and Ruiz “kindly request appropriate lands at and underneath the Salton Sea as a renewable energy focus area.”  The Salton Sea is already part of a massive state and federal Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP), a program designed to expand renewable energy projects in the California desert while simultaneously preserving sensitive wildlife habitats. The

BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT Coronado Historical Association 1100 Orange Ave. Coronado, CA 92118 619-435-7242 | coronadohistor Coronado historic home tour on Mother’s Day “125 years of extraordinar y architecture” On Mother’s Day, May 10, the Coronado Historical Association presents the 2015 Coronado Historic Home Tour, featuring six exquisite local homes representing classic architectural styles commonly found on the island. This year’s home tour celebrates Coronado’s incorporation as a city in 1890 —125 years ago. The six distinctive architectural styles reflect different eras in the island’s history — from craftsman and Spanish eclectic to Tudor and mid-century modern. All six retain their historic charm and original architectural “bones,” but most have been meticulously remodeled, expanded or restored in some fashion. This year, as an added feature, tour participants will also be given a map for self-guided “drive-by” touring of five other unique architectural home styles in Coronado. Tickets are $35 for members and $45 for non-members. Advance tickets may be purchased by phone, in person or on our website.

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015 Ruiz and Vargas letter is intended to encourage the Bureau of Land Management to expedite projects around the Salton Sea, which has seen significant deterioration during the drought. Vargas also co-sponsored H.R. 825 with Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL), an amendment that would have the U.S. actively intervene to prevent boycotts of Israel, particularly efforts of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which protests the expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The amendment was added as part of the Trade Promotion or “fast track” authority, that President Obama is seeking for the Trans Pacific Partnership and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership free trade agreements. H.R. 825 aims to require U.S. trade negotiators to “make rejection of BDS a principal trade objective in Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with the European Union,” according to a press statement released by Roskam’s office. Scott Peters (D-D52), among the busiest of San Diego’s congressional reps, reintroduced the “Treason and Passport Revocation Act” on April 23. The bill would require the Secretary of State to deny or revoke the passports of any individual determined to be a member of or affiliated with a foreign terrorist organization. It would also amend U.S. law to make any affiliation with such organizations an act of treason. “Those who side with terrorist organizations, be it ISIS, Al Qaeda, or others, should not be allowed to freely return to this country. We need to update our laws to reflect the new threats we face, which are more dangerous than ever, given the ease of international travel,” Peters stated in a press release. “An individual that sides with a terrorist organization loses the privilege of returning to this country for treason,” said Vargas, also a supporter, in the same release. The reintroduction of the legislation comes in the same week that two men from Minnesota were arrested in San Diego in an attempt to cross the border into Mexico and travel to Syria to join ISIS fighters there. In late March, Peters reintroduced the “Student Loan Repayment Assistance Act,” a bill that would aim to reduce the burden of student loan debt. The bill changes the Internal Revenue Code to allow employers to assist in the repayment of their employees’ student loan debt without penalty to the employees by not


counting it as employee income. It also requires that the employee pay at least $50 per month toward their student loans. Peters also called for a five-day congressional work week, introducing a resolution that would change the House’s standing rules, requiring it to meet for five days per week for 39 weeks every year, reported The Hill. “Average Americans work five days per week, so there’s no reason members of Congress should not be required to as well,” said Peters’ office in a summary of the ruling. Rep. Susan Davis (D-D53) joined Peters in opposing a bill that would significantly cut funding to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the agency created by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act and championed by then-Harvard professor Elizabeth Warren. “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is there to ensure that Americans are not subjected to discrimination or unfair or deceptive abuses,” Davis said. “Weakening its ability to enforce these laws could mean open season on consumers by any bad actors.” Davis also stepped up efforts to counter measures that serve to restrict citizens’ right to vote in some states by reintroducing two bills. The Universal Right to Vote By Mail Act would enable all voters to cast their vote by mail without any restrictions placed on them by their state, such as requiring a doctor’s note, information on the voter’s religious affiliation, or pregnancy status. Her second bill, the Federal Election Integrity Act, would prohibit a state election official from participating in partisan political activities in support of candidates or causes that would appear on their state’s ballot. “Someone who has a vested interest in a federal campaign should not be able to oversee an election in which that candidate runs,” Davis said. Davis is also spearheading an effort in Congress to boost federal funding for medical research by $32 billion for the National Institute of Health (NIH). “San Diego is a national leader in the field of medical research, and NIH plays a key role in the breakthroughs and discoveries that are made every day,” Davis said. “Budget cuts have threatened this critical funding, affecting medical advancements and our local economy.” —Andy Cohen is a local freelance writer. Reach him at ac76@


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


This kitchen is a secret

A team of chefs meticulously plate the meal courses at Dinner Lab in San Diego. (right) attendees get to rate the experience (Courtesy Dinner Lab)

(Photo by Frank Sabatini Jr.) ;

New foodie craze offers up dinners where you least expect them By Frank Sabatini Jr. Like a traveling circus, Dinner Lab has begun rolling into San Diego with its talented performers and heavy equipment. Although instead of acrobats and jump towers, it brings in an army of skilled cooks and guest chefs along with truckfuls of kitchen gear used for presenting culinary spectacles held each month at various venues around town. As a pop-up restaurant currently operating in nearly 30 cities, locations for the multi-course dinners are disclosed to members and guests via email one day prior in an effort to appeal to spontaneous, adventurous diners. Their menus, however, are posted in advance on Dinner Lab’s website (dinnerlab. com) when dates and prices of the dinners are announced. “No two dinners are ever alike,” said Event Manager Samantha Saad. Since entering the San Diego market in late 2014, venues have included Bash! in North Park, The Soledad Club in Mount Helix, an East Village Warehouse, and Malahat Spirits Company in Miramar. More recently, the April dinner was held at the World Beat Center in Balboa Park, where roughly 70 foodies feasted from tables of 10 on “elevated nourishments” by Malibubased Chef Jason Fullilove. Two of the courses — smoked mackerel with kimchi pancakes and roasted chicken with egg, liver mousse and pea tendrils — were paired with organic wines from France. Yet for those who chose to keep their glasses full through crispy emerald rice containing burdock root and seaweed, and bone marrow with bone broth, an open bar slinging beer, wine and tequila cocktails made with fermented sodas was kept available. The cost of the meal, which concluded with chai-tea panna cotta and guava sorbet treated in liquid nitrogen, was $75 for members and $85 for their guests. Annual membership dues are $175, which allows buyers to also partake in Dinner Lab events in cities such as San Francisco, New Orleans, Dallas, Minneapolis and others. In addition, members can

tote along up to two guests at the non-member price. “This is the new wave of restaurants,” said first-time attendee Scott Slater, who owns Slater’s 50/50 in Point Loma and S&M: Sausage and Meat in University Heights. He had recently heard about Dinner Lab through social media. For Aswin Alexander, an engineer for Apple, the April dinner was his fourth. He plans on keeping his membership active after moving to San Francisco this spring. “I like the way Dinner Lab is structured, and it’s been interesting to see how they put their force behind it,” he said as the World Beat Center dinner was theatrically assembled under spotlights on a raised, makeshift kitchen. The company was launched a few years ago in New Orleans by former middle school teacher Brian Bordainick, who teamed up with cooks and entrepreneurs after throwing several experimental dinner parties that consistently sold out. He currently divides his time running the events in New York and The Big Easy while his team of eight chef managers oversees the dinners in other cities. The goal for each dinner is to spotlight an undiscovered chef from within the region, allowing him or her to unleash their talents with the support of Dinner Lab’s culinary team. The chefs are also provided with a range of kitchen equipment that includes everything from smokers and propane flat tops to pots, pans and cooking utensils. So far, the San Diego dinners have tapped into guest chefs from only the Los Angeles area. But that’s about to change at the May 19 dinner at 7 p.m., when local

chef-caterer Keith Lord of The Wild Thyme Company presents a Euro-Asian dinner paired to beers from 32 North Brewing Company. The cost is $70 for members and $80 for non-members. “We’re definitely looking more into the San Diego chef banks,” said Saad, noting that Nick Brune from Local Habit in Hillcrest will head up a summer dinner yet to be announced. With a local membership nearing 200, Saad added that Dinner Lab is slowly taking root in San Diego, mainly through Facebook and Instagram. “There’s so much going on here in terms of food events, so it’s not as easy to gain momentum as it is in secondary cities, where the food scenes are still in their growth phases,” she said. “But our San Diego members are loving it. And we’re actively looking into all kinds of local venues and chefs for the upcoming dinners.” For more information or to look into a membership, follow them on Facebook at Facebook. com/dinnerlabsd or visit their website, —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career more than two decades ago as a staffer for the former San Diego Tribune. You can reach him at

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015 FROM PAGE 1

FLAGSHIP Diego,” said Brad Engel, Flagship’s vice president. “All the boats will be open for the public to check out, and all rides are on a first come, first served basis that day.” Engel’s father David purchased the fleet in 1986 — then called the Star & Crescent Boat Company — with his brothers Herb and Art, who remains CEO today. The company changed its name in 1990 to San Diego Harbor Excursion, and then to its current name in 2011. “They thought the company was a good business opportunity,” Engel said. “There was lots of potential and they were already doing dinner cruises, but that’s where the expansion was — into evening cruises and corporate events, in addition to harbor and ferry cruises.” The Engel family established a shipyard in San Diego in the 1970s, and owned and operated several shipyards in major West Coast ports. They sold their ship repair business in 1997 and moved from large ships to boats. Today they’re still in the boatyard business and own two local facilities. Flagship’s history touches several aspects of the waterfront including shipbuilding, tugboat operations, salvage, shipping, sport fishing and, of course, ferry and cruise services. “The ferry has been a big portion of the company,” Engel said. “We stopped service after the Coronado Bridge was complete [in 1969] because they were required to pay off the bridge before ferry service could continue. Once it was paid off [in 1987] and the toll was removed, we started up again.” In 1915, the Star Boat Company — the operator of San Diego’s first


In 1949, commercial hunting of gray whales was banned. Six years later, the first whale watching tours began in San Diego and for just $1, passengers could take boat excursions to get upclose views of whales. In 1958, the City Council granted Star & Crescent a license for dining and dancing while cruising the bay, thus the first nighttime harbor tours were launched. Today, the dinner and brunch cruises are the most popular among the dining cruises, and the Patriot jet boat, the newest vessel in the Flagship fleet, has been a crowd-pleaser among thrill seekers. The high-speed jet boat is the only one of its kind in San Diego. Out of them all, the ferry rides carry the largest number of passengers, followed by harbor tours. On average, Flagship carries over 600,000 ferry passengers annually. For the first time last year, they carried over 1 million passengers across the entire fleet. Their guests are a fairly even split between locals and tourists. “Since my family took over, we’ve updated the fleet with new boats and moved into markets we weren’t previously in, including private charters, corporate charters and weddings,” Engel said. Flagship is one of San Diego’s largest cruise companies, and the only one locally- and family-owned. Their facility has always been located along Harbor Drive near Broadway Pier but has grown with

(above) Flagship is known for its dinner cruises; the Patriot jetboat is popular (Courtesy Flagship Cruises)

harbor excursion vessel — merged with its main competitor, Crescent Boat Company, becoming the Star & Crescent Boat Company. The combined fleet included 16 ships that traveled to Roseville and Imperial Beach, California; Fort Rosecrans; Tijuana, Mexico; and the Coronado Islands, and offered harbor tours and water taxis. Ferry service to North Island began in 1918 at the price of five cents per ride, referred to as the “nickel-snatcher.” Later in 1935, popular attractions included warships, tuna clippers, and log rafts known as Benson Rafts that provided lumber.

the development of the harbor, and was remodeled two years ago to add new state-of-the-art docks. “We’re always looking at new sources and products and continue to freshen our fleet,” Engel said. “That’s always a priority.” For more information about the anniversary party or Flagship’s many cruise and ferry options, visit —Kai Oliver-Kurtin is a local freelance writer who enjoys covering events, restaurant news, culture and entertainment. Contact her at kai.


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


Loving our four-legged friends Little Italy News Christopher Gomez We all love our four-legged furry family members and nothing beats being able to take our little sidekicks with us around town. The Little Italy neighborhood makes taking your pup around a piece of cake for pet owners. It is the one of the most pet-friendly neighborhoods in the city, and the Little Italy Association (LIA) makes it a priority to cater to these little guys and create some doggone fun for everyone! Over 50 businesses are dog friendly in Little Italy, so having to leave your dog at home is out of the question! It’s not hard to walk around the neighborhood, leash in hand, on the extra-wide sidewalks that leave plenty of room for you and your pup to stroll down the streets. All around the 48-block district, visitors will see water dishes and doggy treats left outside business and restaurant doors for their dog pals to get a little snack and sip to keep them energized and hydrated. There are also multiple open public spaces throughout the neighborhood — all dog friendly of course. From European inspired piazzas to the future Amici Dog Park —you can find plenty of space for your four-legged friend to run around in. Plus, with all of the outdoor dining options, your pet can stay by your side at all times — breakfast, lunch and dinner! If the day has just been too tiring, pups can enjoy a doggy wash and socializing at Hair y & Merr y’s Pet Spa, or if Fido just isn’t feeling well, Amici Pet Hospital is also located in the neighborhood. And don’t forget the LIA has made it extremely convenient for dog owners to clean up after their pets, by having biodegradable doggy-bag dispensers on ever y corner to keep up the cleanliness of the community. Little Italy makes traveling with four-legged furry friends relaxing for all pet parents and a cozy place for the over 1,800 dogs that call this neighborhood their home. Check out what a dog’s life is like in Little Italy firsthand, at Little Italy Association’s YouTube channel: Little Italy San Diego. For more information about the Little Italy neighborhood visit, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @ LittleItalySD and Facebook/ Little Italy.   —Christopher Gomez has been Little Italy’s district manager for the past 15 years. Reach him at


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

Humphreys: a mash up of old and new Tunes About Town Jen Van Tieghem

Rocking fiddles in the free world Three time Grammy-winning Cajun band BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet will headline the Gator By the Bay Festival kickoff concert Thursday, May 7. (Courtesy Gator By the Bay)

Renowned BeauSoleil set to kick off Gator By the Bay festival By Wendy Lemlin Three-time Grammy-winning Cajun band BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet will headline the Gator By the Bay festival’s special kick-off concert, Thursday, May 7, at Spanish Landing Park, located on Harbor Drive across from San Diego International Airport. Celebrating their 40th anniversary, the band has been called “the world’s greatest Cajun band” by Garrison Keillor, host of the iconic NPR radio show “A Prairie Home Companion,” on which BeauSoleil has appeared more times than band leader Michael Doucet can count. “I think we have played on the show at least once per year since 1982,” he recalled. “And in the early days, it really opened the door for us and introduced our music to a whole new audience. We’ve been told that we have been on more shows than any other guest artists.” In 1998, BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet became the first Cajun band ever to win a Grammy. They won two more in 2009 and 2010, and have garnered a total of 12 Grammy nominations. Based in Lafayette, Louisiana — the epicenter of “Cajun Country” — the band has also won the Big Easy Entertainment Award, presented by the New Orleans music and entertainment publication Gambit Weekly 10 times for Best Cajun Band. They’ve also landed the Best Cajun Artist title 13 times in Offbeat Magazine’s Best of the Beat Awards. In a state where it seems there are as many Cajun bands as alligators in the bayous, that’s a really big deal. Doucet has gained wide acclaim for developing his own flavor of Cajun music with the band. Early on, he focused on the lead and twin fiddle styles of the original Acadian folk music, over the more popular adoption of the German diatonic accordion as the lead instrument found in most Cajun bands today. “When I started playing music, I never thought in terms of a band,” he said. “I learned from my uncle and the great fiddle players of our region. The fiddle was the oldest instrument in Cajun music, and the twin fiddles style was the one that spoke to

me. So, when BeauSoleil began, that was the direction I took. “Cajun music is not just one thing, it’s multi-faceted,” he added. “In fact, when I was growing up, you never heard the term ‘Cajun music,’ it was called Acadian, or even Evangeline, because of its birth in our centuries-old heritage as exiles from Nova Scotia and there it was always the fiddle that was first and foremost.” The accordion eventually became the more widely used lead instrument on the Louisiana scene, Doucet said, because it adapted better to the region’s humidity and other adverse weather conditions. BeauSoleil’s powerful music is both deeply traditional and vibrantly futuristic. While the band’s repertoire includes hundreds of traditional Cajun and zydeco songs, BeauSoleil has also pushed past the purely traditional Louisiana folk music, incorporating elements of rock ‘n’ roll, jazz, blues, calypso, and other genres in both original compositions and reworkings of classic tunes. “For us, it has always been a wide view of the music,” Doucet said. “Back in the ’70s when we started, the genre was considered ‘old people’s music.’ We worked to bring out the fun in the music, to introduce it in the schools and get young people involved. “Now I guess we’re the old people,” the white-haired musician said, laughing. “But we’re still rocking, and Cajun music today is enjoying a huge multigenerational revival, with bands whose members are in their 20s, 30s and on up, drawing huge crowds, not just in Louisiana, but in concerts and festivals all over the country and even the world.” BeauSoleil are no strangers to the San Diego area; in recent years they have played to packed audiences at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido, Poway Center for the Performing Arts, the now-defunct Anthology, and performed numerous times at the old Street Scene festival Downtown. “I love playing in San Diego,” Doucet said enthusiastically. “The crowds are always appreciative, even if they are new to Cajun music.” Doucet said he also loves the diversity of San Diego’s restaurants

and food, especially the authentic Mexican cuisine and never-ending supply of avocados. “I’m really looking forward to playing at Gator By the Bay, which does so much to bring the Louisiana culture to Southern California,” he said. “Plus, one of the great things about San Diego is the weather and it’s always fun to be able to play outside, without the humidity or extremes of temperature we often experience in Louisiana.” BeauSoleil avec Michael Doucet consists of Michael Doucet on violin, accordion, mandolin, vocals and guitar; his brother David Doucet on guitar, ukelele, and vocals; Mitch Reed on fiddle and bass; Billy Ware on percussion; Tommy Alesi on drums; and Bill Bennett on bass and sound tech. To learn more about the band, visit Opening for BeauSoleil on May 7 are San Diego performers G Burns Jug Band and Sara Petite. Tickets for the seated concert (but, yes, there will be two dance floors!) range from $25-$95, and are available online or at the gate. Note: Tickets for BeauSoleil do not include access to the festival’s Friday, Saturday or Sunday activities unless you purchase a four-day festival ticket for $140. Gator By the Bay, takes place May 7-10, and will include over 85 performances on five stages, featuring an eclectic mix of music including Cajun, zydeco, legendary blues, swing, Latin, rockabilly, and more. “All day” tickets, evening tickets, or two-, three-, and four-day tickets are available in advance online at a discounted rate, or at the gate. Children under 17 are free when accompanied by an adult. The festival is presented by the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and the County of San Diego Community Enhancement program, and is also presented in part by the Louisiana Office of Tourism and their affiliate tourism bureaus. All festival and ticket information can be found at —Wendy Lemlin is an awardwinning San Diego-based freelance writer. She can be reached at


Each year, Humphreys Concerts by the Bay boasts an eclectic lineup of bands playing throughout the spring, summer and fall at the beautiful waterside location. Despite growing competition from nearby music venues, Humphreys has once again announced nearly 60 upcoming, with more to be added. Their musical guests range from classic-rock outfits to upand-coming singer-songwriters with everything in between. Humphreys will also welcome a handful of comedians this year rounding out their diverse offerings. The season is already off to a great start with recent sold-out shows by Interpol and Steely Dan; there are certainly more sell out days to come. With most of the shows falling in the summer months, here is a look at some of our picks for shows in May, June and July.

Tony Bennett (Courtesy Humphreys) May 14 – Tony Bennett To say that Bennett is a legend is an understatement. The musician’s career has spanned over 60 years and garnered him a wealth of accolades. At Humphreys, the crooner will present a set of his beloved signature songs along with his endearing stage presence. Opening the show will be Tony Bennett’s own daughter, Antonia Bennett, who performs jazz and pop standards. Tickets start at $127 with dinner and hotel packages available. 7:30 p.m. May 16 – Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds Former Oasis guitarist and songwriter Noel Gallagher has released two albums with this group, the most recent of which dropped this year. Gallagher’s

newer material incorporates psychedelic rock elements into a pop-alternative style. The band also performs covers of several Oasis tunes. This show is standing only as opposed to a seated show. Tickets are $45. 8 p.m.

Ingrid Michaelson (Courtesy Humphreys) June 12 – Ingrid Michaelson Despite penning several successful pop songs over the last decade, Michaelson is still a seemingly underappreciated singer-songwriter. From the sweet and simple “The Way I Am” to the dance-worthy “Parachute,” the songstress has a talent for crafting addictive tunes. Her latest earworm “Girls Chase Boys” was released on last year’s “Lights Out.” That album also spawned “Time Machine,” a catchy ditty with an equally captivating video, which features cameos from several actors including Rainn Wilson and Donald Faison. Tickets start at $40 with dinner and hotel packages available. 7 p.m. June 28 – Smash Mouth/ Toad the Wet Sprocket/Tonic This lineup of pop-rock goodness will bring together three hit-making bands from the ’90s and early 2000s. Those of us that grew up with “All-Star” (Smash Mouth), “All I Want” (Toad the Wet Sprocket) and “If You Could Only See” (Tonic) as our high school soundtrack won’t want to miss this one. All three bands are likely to perform songs that span their lengthy catalogs and entice fans both old and new. Tickets start at $53 with dinner, hotel, and meet and greet packages available. 7 p.m.

see Humphreys page 15


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

NEWS East Village landmark sign

The East Village Association is hoping to raise $250,000 to fund the design and installation of a landmark sign to be located within the East Village. For more information on this exciting project, or to make a donation to the project fund, visit

Indoor skydiving

An indoor skydiving facility is under construction in the East Village. The $10 million facility operated by SkyDive San Diego is being built on the corner of 14th Street and Imperial Avenue. It will feature a 30-foothigh glass tube and two wind tunnels that will lift riders 5 to 6 feet off the ground. The facility is expected to open in late December.

EVENTS Tacos and Tequila Festival May 2, 1–5 p.m.

Enjoy tacos, margaritas, craft beer, and live music at this fun festival at SILO in Makers Quarter. Tickets are $35 and include complimentary signature margarita samples from 10 local mixologists, craft beer samples from local breweries, and 10 signature tacos. This event benefits the Front Burner Fund.

Central Library bike parade and fiesta May 2, 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Celebrate the Balboa Park Centennial with a bike parade departing from the Central Library at 8:30 a.m., traveling up to Balboa Park and back to the Library by 2 p.m. A bike expo will also be held in the library’s courtyard.

Third annual Brew Rendezvous May 17, 1 – 4 p.m.

Community Health Improvement Partners will host a food, farm and craft beer event at SILO in Makers Quarter. General admission tickets are $45 (designated driver tickets are $25). Proceeds from this event benefit CHIP’s efforts to tackle obesity through the development of a healthy, sustainable and regional food system.

COMMUNITY MEETINGS East Village Association (EVA) Annual meeting/ election/social May 13, 5 – 7 p.m.

Save the date for EVA’s annual meeting, election, and social at Urbana apartments, located at 450 10th Ave.

East Village Residents Group (EVRG)

Are you interested in what new developments, businesses, parks, etc. are in the works throughout East Village? EVRG meets every third Thursday of the month at East Village Community Church located at 1374 Island Ave. Many community leaders are featured speakers. v

The story of a Downtown dog-owner want-to-be By A grandma in East Village I always wanted to own a dog but our busy condo lifestyle made me hesitate to take on the responsibility. Then one day my son asked if I would dog-sit for two weeks while they went on vacation. I was thrilled to have little Wrigley for two weeks. My fondest dreams had come true – I would have my dog. However, after having Wrigley as part of our daily family, I learned a few things about being a dog owner. I am writing this as I say goodbye after two weeks of walking Wrigley ever y day at 6:30 a.m., 3 p.m., and 8 p.m. for her daily constitution, while tr ying to avoid all the beautiful foliage surrounding our condo and picking up dog poop — that was ver y exciting. Then after each walk, washing all the mysterious smells from Wrigley’s paws that she picked up from the neighborhood streets. On the other hand, Wrigley was in heaven sniffing the new smells the city offered. I am finally convinced that owners of dogs who live in condos are truly dedicated dog lovers. How I missed having a yard and just opening the door to let my pooch out on her own, free to explore her world and relieve herself in private. How I missed not having to pick up the dog poop until the day before the gardeners came. How I missed not being able to relax in my PJs and read the morning paper without running out to walk the dog. How I missed not snuggling in at 8 p.m. to enjoy my evening without running out to walk the dog for the evening. How I missed not having my second bathroom, which had been turned into a doghouse for the long hours we were away from Wrigley. Oh, how I now truly appreciate those dedicated

dog owners I see every morning and evening walking their beloved dogs. As for me, I will now look for ward to enjoying Wrigley’s sporadic visits to grandmas and let my son do the walks — that is now my dream dog.v



San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

NEWS East Village landmark sign

The East Village Association is hoping to raise $250,000 to fund the design and installation of a landmark sign to be located within the East Village. For more information on this exciting project, or to make a donation to the project fund, visit

Indoor skydiving

An indoor skydiving facility is under construction in the East Village. The $10 million facility operated by SkyDive San Diego is being built on the corner of 14th Street and Imperial Avenue. It will feature a 30-foothigh glass tube and two wind tunnels that will lift riders 5 to 6 feet off the ground. The facility is expected to open in late December.

EVENTS Tacos and Tequila Festival May 2, 1–5 p.m.

Enjoy tacos, margaritas, craft beer, and live music at this fun festival at SILO in Makers Quarter. Tickets are $35 and include complimentary signature margarita samples from 10 local mixologists, craft beer samples from local breweries, and 10 signature tacos. This event benefits the Front Burner Fund.

Central Library bike parade and fiesta May 2, 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Celebrate the Balboa Park Centennial with a bike parade departing from the Central Library at 8:30 a.m., traveling up to Balboa Park and back to the Library by 2 p.m. A bike expo will also be held in the library’s courtyard.

Third annual Brew Rendezvous May 17, 1 – 4 p.m.

Community Health Improvement Partners will host a food, farm and craft beer event at SILO in Makers Quarter. General admission tickets are $45 (designated driver tickets are $25). Proceeds from this event benefit CHIP’s efforts to tackle obesity through the development of a healthy, sustainable and regional food system.

COMMUNITY MEETINGS East Village Association (EVA) Annual meeting/ election/social May 13, 5 – 7 p.m.

Save the date for EVA’s annual meeting, election, and social at Urbana apartments, located at 450 10th Ave.

East Village Residents Group (EVRG)

Are you interested in what new developments, businesses, parks, etc. are in the works throughout East Village? EVRG meets every third Thursday of the month at East Village Community Church located at 1374 Island Ave. Many community leaders are featured speakers. v

The story of a Downtown dog-owner want-to-be By A grandma in East Village I always wanted to own a dog but our busy condo lifestyle made me hesitate to take on the responsibility. Then one day my son asked if I would dog-sit for two weeks while they went on vacation. I was thrilled to have little Wrigley for two weeks. My fondest dreams had come true – I would have my dog. However, after having Wrigley as part of our daily family, I learned a few things about being a dog owner. I am writing this as I say goodbye after two weeks of walking Wrigley ever y day at 6:30 a.m., 3 p.m., and 8 p.m. for her daily constitution, while tr ying to avoid all the beautiful foliage surrounding our condo and picking up dog poop — that was ver y exciting. Then after each walk, washing all the mysterious smells from Wrigley’s paws that she picked up from the neighborhood streets. On the other hand, Wrigley was in heaven sniffing the new smells the city offered. I am finally convinced that owners of dogs who live in condos are truly dedicated dog lovers. How I missed having a yard and just opening the door to let my pooch out on her own, free to explore her world and relieve herself in private. How I missed not having to pick up the dog poop until the day before the gardeners came. How I missed not being able to relax in my PJs and read the morning paper without running out to walk the dog. How I missed not snuggling in at 8 p.m. to enjoy my evening without running out to walk the dog for the evening. How I missed not having my second bathroom, which had been turned into a doghouse for the long hours we were away from Wrigley. Oh, how I now truly appreciate those dedicated

dog owners I see every morning and evening walking their beloved dogs. As for me, I will now look for ward to enjoying Wrigley’s sporadic visits to grandmas and let my son do the walks — that is now my dream dog.v



San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

USO gets a boost Sailors and contractors chip in to help the organization By Dave Schwab USO San Diego’s Downtown Center just got a much-needed renovation — and it didn’t cost the nonprofit a dime. On April 13, more than 100 volunteers from the insurance company Foresters took time out of their annual business conference in San Diego to help make improvements to the Center by painting and constructing furniture. “We are so grateful to Foresters for their generous donation, of which none of this would have been possible,” said Judy Forrester, president/CEO of USO San Diego. “Our Downtown Center supported over 34,000 service members and military families in 2014 and was really in need of repairs.” Forrester gave kudos to San Diego contractor Steve Doyle for his work in coordinating all the help with the remodeling project. The improvements to the USO Center, aside from the fresh coat of

paint, included new light fixtures, hot water in the bathroom sinks, better air conditioning and the construction of rooms for storage space. Doyle rallied together 10 San Diego companies to do prep work for USO improvements, prior to painting. Those companies included Anderson Plumbing, Heating and Air, KirE Builders, Inc., Alpha Design Group, Perkins Painting Co., Performance Drywall, Cal West Lighting, Interior Special-

NEWS ists, Wing Millwork and Supply Company, Xacte Door and Trim and American Acoustics. Tiana Caylor, director of the Downtown USO Center, located at 303 A St. Suite 100, said Foresters’ own donation “inspired local contractors to assist in offering free services to us [USO].” Caylor said the bulk of the remodeling work was actually done from 9 – 11 a.m. on April 13. The day before, April 12, to kickoff National Volunteer Week, sailors from the USS New Orleans volunteered their time to lay down paper and tape the areas where painting would be done, along with moving furniture such as heavy couches and tables. The bulk of the renovation is now complete, though Caylor said there are a few finishing touches yet to be taken care of. “We think of it as a revitalization,” Caylor said of the makeover, noting the USO’s Downtown facility, which the organization has inhabited since 1995, was previously a city-owned facility whose interior hadn’t been updated in 20-plus years. Caylor said design improvements at the Center are going a long way toward fulfilling USO’s mission to serve active duty military personnel and their families furnishing them with a “home away from home.” “USO Downtown is a place where service members and their families can come to from 11 a.m. – 9 p.m., 365 days a year,” Caylor said, adding that 34,111 guests passed through the facility’s doors in 2014. “That’s a lot of foot traffic,” she added. The USO Downtown Center offers a number of amenities such as a lounge area, computer stations, a café, shower facilities and recreational activities, all provided free of charge to military members. Another facility recently opened up in Terminal Two at the San Diego International Airport, named after former veteran, longtime USO supporter and Rancho San Diego resident Neil Ash. USO San Diego Communications Director Meaghan Cox pointed out that as a nonprofit, the USO relies on donations to support military members. “A lot of people think we must be a [subsidized] government organization, but we’re not,” Cox said, noting the organization couldn’t perform its mission without donations and volunteers. “There are always things to do,” she continued. “We’re always looking for improvements: new furniture, donations in terms of foods and snacks, dry goods, etc.”

Caylor said more furniture will be needed in the future to continue to update the Downtown facility, particularly its dining area, which serves about 215 people dinner every Tuesday night. The USO is thankful for all the community’s cooperation and concern. “The amount of outreach and support we’ve received in this project — and the result — are amazing,” Caylor said. USO San Diego’s mission is to lift the spirits of America’s troops and their families by enhancing their quality of life. USO seeks to create a cooperative relationship between U.S. military communities and involved or supporting civilian communities. USO San Diego served the San Diego military community more than 260,000 times in 2014 through its two centers at USO San Diego Downtown Center and USO Neil Ash Airport Center. Volunteers at USO San Diego, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, donated more than 34,000 hours of their time in 2014. To learn more about USO San Diego visit —Dave Schwab is a local freelance writer. He can be reached at dschwabie@journalist.comv

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John Butler Trio (Courtesy Humphreys) July 2 – John Butler Trio This Australian band presents an interesting combination of folk-rock with funk and bluegrass elements. Known as a “jam band,” the group is known for extended musical interludes. Their infectious rhythms can be heard on their latest single “Only One.” Soulful singer Anderson East will open the show. This show is standing room only. Tickets are $48. 7:30 p.m.

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


July 5 – Indigo Girls The prolific folk duo will wrap up Fourth of July weekend with their gorgeous harmonies. Though their career started in the ’80s, Amy Ray and Emily Saliers have stood the test of time with songs that hold up just as well. The two have had a career many only dream of, as talented musicians (and political activists) whose songs have become contemporary classics. With over a dozen albums on their resume, the set should include plenty of hits as well as deeper cuts. Our fingers are crossed for “Shame on You” and “Love of Our Lives.” Tickets start at $49 with dinner and hotel packages available. 7:30 p.m. This smattering of shows is just the tip of Humphreys’ musical iceberg. Visit HumphreysConcerts. com for a full schedule that stretches through the end of October. —Reach Jen Van Tieghem at






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San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


“Freud’s Last Sessiwon”

Extended through May 30 Tuesdays – Sundays Lamb’s Players 1142 Orange Ave., Coronado Tickets 619-437-6000 or

Lewis and Freud C.S. Lewis trades barbs with Sigmund Freud in Lambs’ Players “Freud’s Last Lesson” (Photo by Nathan Peirson)

St. Germain’s work receives a fine production in Coronado This Week On Stage Charlene Baldridge The Lamb’s Players Theatre production of Mark St. Germain’s “Freud’s Last Session” gives producing artistic director Robert Smyth a rare chance to remind audiences what else he can do, which is exceptional work as an actor. This play, in particular, suits him to a T. In the

role of the much younger C.S. Lewis, director Deborah Gilmore Smyth cast Fran Gercke. The play is set in 1939 London. Suffering terminal cancer, noted atheist and father of modern psychoanalysis Sigmund Freud, having fled Vienna and the Nazis a year earlier, requests a visit from the recently converted former atheist Lewis, who is soon to achieve fame with his books “The Chronicles of Narnia” and “The Screwtape Letters.” As Lewis and Freud, Gercke and Smyth make sharp-witted sparring partners, one representing faith and the other, intellect. Laughs abound and there is much common ground. Gercke presents an insecure, physically ill-at-ease Lewis, who would have been 41 at the time.

His appointment with Freud in Hempstead, NW London, coincides with Germany’s Sept. 3, 1939, invasion of Poland. Believing he’s been summoned because he wrote something that offended the 83-year-old Freud, Lewis is apprehensive and defensive. He never achieves any sense of ease. Gercke fails to thoroughly evince Lewis’s deep humanity and genuine concern. Granted Lewis is young, but in his own way equal to Freud’s greatness and genius. As the two-handed dialectic unfolds, it’s as if Lewis still feels inept and unequal. He is appalled, perhaps, but certainly not at a loss. Smyth’s Freud is extraordinarily touching as the great man in the extreme, final phase of the disease that has eaten away his jaw. Freud is almost too proud to ask for help. The 11th hour scene in which Lewis is forced to come to Freud’s aid somewhat redeems St. Germain’s largely cerebral play. If such an imagined 90-minute engagement, beautifully designed by Brian Prather, is your cup of tea, “Freud’s Last Session” will delight you as well as students of either or both men. It’s a perfect fit for Lamb’s audiences. The play was written St. Germain and was suggested by Dr. Armand Nicholi, Jr.’s, “The Question of God.” Nathan Peirson is lighting designer, Juliet Czoka, the costume designer, and director Deborah Gilmour Smyth doubles as the sound designer. Last October this offBroadway play was produced by North Coast Repertor y Theatre with Bruce Turk as C.S. Lewis and Michael Santo as Sigmund Freud. Comparisons are indeed odious, but obser ving the differing interplay of the two productions in close proximity is a special treat for the theatergoer. Each has its virtues. —Charlene Baldridge has been writing about the arts since 1979. You can follow her blog at or reach her at


Tips for a happy union and beyond Financial News Taylor Schulte You’ve saved up for the ring. Now what? With wedding season upon us, many couples are either planning their nuptials or taking the plunge this year. Regardless of which stage you’re in, an important thing to consider when deciding to take that next big step together is not only how, when and where to wed one another, but also how to successfully marry your finances. Studies show that no matter how much a person makes, fights about money are among the biggest frictions in a marriage and top contributors to divorce. While everyone sees financial well-being differently, there are things you can do to ensure that friction is minimized, so that you can spend more time doing the things you love and building a life together. Whether you’re planning on saying your “I do’s” this year or next, below are my financial recommendations for a happier union — mostly as a financial planner, but also as a husband. Talk about it Even though I’ve been in this industry for years, I’m still surprised by how many people don’t discuss finances with their life partners. While some simply prefer not to talk about money, others just don’t know how to go about it. Similar to other parts of your relationship, keeping the financial lines of communication open is essential for success. Having an ongoing financial

check-up on the calendar — whether it’s weekly, monthly or even semiannually — is a great way to touch base and check in current fiscal affairs. In my household, we call it a “financial round table.” My wife and I sit down together and discuss our financial situation and identify shortterm and long-term goals. Having a clear understanding of where you are financially and where you want to be in a month’s time or in five years will go a long way in ensuring both of you are working towards the same goals and minimize any miscommunication with regards to spending and saving. Couples that save together, stay together In addition to hosting a recurring financial roundtable, I recommend having a budget in place and a plan for saving as a couple. Even if your idea of saving and your contributions may be different from your partner’s, putting a plan together on how to budget your expenses and save towards common goals can minimize misunderstandings and, in turn, conflicts over money. Creating a family budget starts with aggregating your revenues and writing down every possible expense, including a line item for savings, allowing for miscellaneous items that may come up unexpectedly. It doesn’t matter you are allocating $10 or $1,000 to savings monthly as a start — the important thing is that you’re saving and growing those contributions together. Also, if you have big plans ahead, such as a wedding, vacation or a new baby, you can create an additional savings account with that purpose in mind. That way you won’t be dipping into your core savings and maximize the interest on those funds.

There’s an app for that Not everyone is born with a knack for managing finances, and even those who have a clear understanding of what needs to be done are often too busy focusing on other important parts of their life, such as bringing in revenue, taking care of their kids, their health or having a social life. The great news is that, nowadays, there are a number of easy-to-use on-the-go tools that can help with personal finances. From mobile banking, to financial apps that organize your cash flow, it’s no longer necessary to invest a significant amount of time and energy to understand your current financial well-being. Some of my favorite apps include Mint, which helps manage your bills and spending, and Acorns, which automatically invests your spare change. It’s a lot easier to ignore your personal finances than tackle them head on, but as you plan to share your life with someone, it’s best to set yourself up for success from the very beginning. Your finances are a big part of your life and as you take that next step in sharing your life with your soon-to-be husband or wife, know that the more you communicate and work towards the same financial goals, the less the risk of misunderstanding and the greater chance for a happy union — personally and financially. —Taylor Schulte, CFP is the founder of Define Financial in Downtown San Diego. Schulte specializes in providing independent, objective, financial advice to individuals, families and businesses. He can be reached at 619-577-4002 or

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


CAR2GO manager Will Berry, referring to the area that houses the staff. “I know it had been retail for clothing; I know it’s been a print shop, and I know it had been a church. Those are just some of the lives it’s had.” Today, the “bee hive,” as Berry refers to it, is a hip, industrial-meetsfuture workspace designed by Paul Basile Studios, car2go’s East Village neighbor. Berry is eager to show off the functionality he said Basile deserves all the credit for, much of which is visible to the eye was built or assembled by Basile himself. “That gives a very unique feel to it,” Berry said. “Sometimes friends of mine will come in to visit and they’ll just talk about how jealous they are that this is the space that we’re in.” Basile, who has won five Orchids and a Grand Orchid from the San Diego Architectural Foundation for the personal stamps he’s put on area restaurants and businesses, received one in 2012 for the interior design of car2go’s headquarters. With a very open and functional design, including half-walls


that were boarded up entirely, pigeon poop all over the floor, and it’s a major investment. I felt we needed to refocus our efforts elsewhere,” he said. “I finally came around and it was humbling for me.” Berry said once they got the funds to acquire the 3,500-squarefoot space, scraped it, laid down the dirt and got a network of Blink electric vehicle charging stations inside, they found they could get 30 cars inside. Their new charging facility came online in January of 2013. “This was a game changer for us,” Berr y said. Now, while actively in the process of swapping out 380 Gen2 units for 400 Gen3, they couldn’t live without it. “Our perfect product is a car that is fully clean inside and out and fully charged – if I can deliver on that — that’s the essence of our brand,” Berry said. “With 38 charging stations and 400 cars, about 10 percent of our fleet is down at any time and back at the office getting some form of maintenance.” Berr y calls their fleet efforts an orchestra. “There are so many different pieces that really need to come together at any one time,” he said. “With the GPS enablement

Will Berry (right) with members from the San Diego team (Courtesy car2go) and objects on wheels for mobility purposes, the space offers plenty of opportunity for interaction and creativity between the fleet team, marketing, customer service, dispatch and management. Several large-scale promotional photos of car2go’s first public launch in Ulm, Germany adorn the walls, as well as a stunning photo of an entire fleet inside a village square in Ulm, along with others from the company’s North American headquarters in Austin, Texas. Basile’s “street” theme uses trench plates from street repairs, a sliding door made of recycled products, a 2,000 pound design table, and lots of old vintage rustic materials mixed with the new, giving the space lots of character and placing it in direct opposition of its pristine and clinical-style lobby. Back in 2011, with a small fleet of eight electric vehicles, car2go had a small, double wide 600-square-foot charging bay. Berry said the space was not big enough to conduct maintenance while charging vehicles, so repairs were done on the street. It quickly became apparent that they needed more space. “We realized we had cars that we needed to increase the average ‘state of charge’ across the fleet for, to be able to benefit our members so they could get where they needed to go and we could get the revenue,” Berry said. “So the trick was that we needed more private charging that we could directly control.” Berry, who was then marketing manager, said he and his colleagues were working to find a solution when one presented itself; the building directly behind them that faced 10th Street. Once they got through the rusted metal door that stood between them, they found an empty open bay-style building. Though his colleagues could see the potential, Berry was a total skeptic. “The space had two, three inches of dirt everywhere, windows

of our vehicles we really have the heartbeat of the car, so that if we do have a vehicle out there that is at a low state of charge — by the way, if a car is 20 percent or below it is no longer available on the app — a member could not walk up and swipe into that car. “We’ve decided that 20 percent is just too low – we would rather have that car sit until we send a fleet team member out to access it and bring it to the closest charging point.” Sometimes the closest charging point is a public EV station nearby, sometimes it makes better sense to bring the unit back to headquarters so the fleet team can charge it and clean it. Berr y said feedback is steady and comes to the EV company in many ways, including their customer ser vice line, walk-ins to their lobby, but the primar y method is Twitter. “Our members are very passionate about the service and they are also not afraid to tell us when we need to make an improvement,” he said. Take your Car2Go to the ballgame For the past two baseball seasons, Berr y said they’ve run a special program — that not only benefits their members but also creates something they refer to as “Padres weekend series drop zones.” All a member has to do is pull up to the Ninth Avenue side just like a valet. “We’ve made it so easy to get to the game,” Berry said. “Especially for season ticket holders who live in Uptown. There is no waiting for us; they pull up, end their rental and off they go.” Part I of this series ran in April, [“Car2Go enhances its San Diego Fleet,” Vol. 16, Issue 4]. —Morgan M. Hurley can be reached at

Keeping Downtown clean and beautiful, together Downtown Partnership News Kris Michell With its location near the San Diego Bay, Downtown San Diego comes by its good looks naturally; but keeping our Downtown clean, safe and beautiful is no accident — it takes hard work and commitment from all of us. On the frontlines of this effort is the Clean & Safe team, who work tirelessly to keep Downtown at its very best, emptying trash cans, sweeping up sidewalks, removing graffiti and litter, installing beautiful (and drought-tolerant) plants, as well as stringing twinkle lights in trees. The impact Clean & Safe has on Downtown can’t be overstated. Just take a look at what Clean & Safe has accomplished since the beginning of the year: • Pulled 46,630 bags of trash • Poop-scooped 38,633 times and managed 176 doggy-bag stations • Removed more than 22,900 stickers • Cleaned nearly 6,200 pieces of graffiti from Downtown buildings and sidewalks • Provided directional assistance to more than 5,500 residents and visitors • Addressed more than 4,300 loitering calls on behalf of property owners and businesses But for Downtown to continue to thrive, it’s going to take more than just the efforts of the Clean & Safe team — it will take all of us to ensure that we are delivering on the true promise of our urban center. While it is a tall order to create a world-class Downtown, the good news is that there is no shortage of ways that you can get involved and

help Clean & Safe and the Downtown San Diego Partnership in its efforts. Community cleanups: The Downtown San Diego Partnership and the Clean & Safe team routinely hold cleanups to engage the community and provide a little extra TLC to neighborhoods throughout Downtown. The next such cleanup, which is in conjunction with the Gaslamp Quarter Association, is scheduled for Saturday, May 30 at 8 a.m. We hope you’ll join our team of volunteers to make sure our historic Gaslamp Quarter continues to shine brightly. Register online today at Weekly Walkabouts: Want to get a street-level view of what Clean & Safe is working on? Join us on one of our weekly walkabouts where we survey the streets and sidewalks of Downtown to find out what needs fixing. These walkabouts, which are held every Friday and rotate throughout all the neighborhoods that Clean & Safe serves, are a great opportunity to meet your Downtown neighbors and learn about our daily operation, all while enjoying a stroll with a program supervisor. Clean & Safe reports all issues identified during the walkabouts to the City of San Diego and provides needed follow-up to get those issues addressed. Get information about the next walkabout by contacting Clean & Safe either by phone at 619-234-8900 or by email at Community Input: To create a great urban neighborhood, you need the community’s support and involvement. That is why the Downtown San Diego Partnership and the Clean & Safe team are vigilant in their efforts to receive feedback and input from property owners, residents and business owners throughout Downtown. Clean & Safe staff routinely gives

Spinning for charity updates on its current programs and priorities at neighborhood meetings, as well as holding annual community meetings to help develop its budget and goals for the coming year. Property owners can also ask Clean & Safe for an on-site visit to review and assess specific issues affecting their property. If you don’t have time to attend a meeting, there are plenty of other ways to stay informed. You can provide feedback to Clean & Safe through the Downtown San Diego Partnership’s recently revamped website at clean-and-safe. With a click of a button, you can report on anything from graffiti removal to trash pickup to the refilling of doggybag stations. The new website also delivers on Clean & Safe’s commitment to best-of-class accountability and oversight, and you can find all its meeting minutes, tax forms and financials online at To keep updated on all Clean & Safe happenings, make sure to sign up to receive its electronic bulletins either by signing up on its website or by emailing We want to hear from you: Finally, do you have a story about your Downtown San Diego experience or how the Clean & Safe Program has improved your quality of life? We are looking for first-person accounts of what brought you Downtown, why you stayed and why you love your neighborhood. We know you love our Downtown as much as we do. This is your chance to tell us why. Send your stories and photos to info@, and you may be featured in our weekly bulletin or on our social media pages. —Kris Michell is the president and CEO of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, the organization that oversees the Clean & Safe program and also works toward creating a world-class Downtown. For questions or comments, email

Rankin promised. “The million-dollar sound system, the lasers and the LED lights.” Rankin is a regular at SparkCycle, and has been thinking about combining clubbing and spinning for a while. “The people at SparkCycle do what they can to make you forget you’re exercising,” he said, adding that there are many similarities between the type of music that is good for spinning and the type that is great for clubbing. By Alex Owens “Anything with a high amount of beats-per-minute works,” he said. “When I started, the teacher had us ride Nightclubs commonly spin discs, but Fluxx is to the beat so everyone’s right foot is with the bass.” attempting to spin in a different way — with a spin It’s like a club in other ways, according to Cochrane. class on the dance floor. “People who are spinning like to lose themOn May 16, the Downtown nightclub will host Fluxx selves in the moment,” she said. “They’re not Spin between noon – 5 p.m. where instead of dancing, focused on miles, calories or RPMs.” patrons will ride one of 44 spin cycles There are big differences, and not that will be set up in the space. just because of the bikes. Although Fluxx Spin is being held as a cocktails will be available at the event, partnership with SparkCycle, a La people who are planning to spin will Jolla-based spin-cycle facility. be discouraged from drinking booze SparkCycle owner Stephanie beforehand and alcoholic beverages Cochrane believes the event is groundwon’t be allowed on the SpinCycles. breaking in many ways. “They can have a mimosa after“I’ve been checking the Internet wards,” Cochrane suggested. and I don’t believe there has been an Cochrane believes that the event like this before at a nightclub,” people who spin at Fluxx Spin may Cochrane said. “To be fair, we have a approach the event differently than club-like vibe already so it’s a good fit.” Fluxx will host a fundraiser May 16 they would a normal workout. (Courtesy Fluxx) The event will benefit the Chal“I think the dress will be more lenged Athletes Foundation Operation risqué,” she said. “You’ll see a lot Rebound, a charity that helps American military personnel, of booty shorts and sports bras.” veterans and first responders facing physical challenges to If successful, both Rankin and Cochrane would like to still engage in sports and fitness activities. continue putting a new spin on the club experience. The charity is near and dear to Fluxx bar manager JP “If it takes off, we’d find a way to make it work in the Rankin, who cooked up the event with Cochrane. schedule,” Rankin said. “But, right now, I think the best “I was born and raised in Coronado, so the military way to do it is semi-annually and do it for a charity.” and the Navy are close to my heart,” Rankin said. “Any Fluxx is located at 500 Fourth Ave., Downtown. For opportunity to help them is a no-brainer.” more information on Fluxx Spin, visit Patrons have the choice of paying $80 for one of two event/2015-05-16/fluxx-spin-w-sparkcycle. spin classes that will be held during the event or paying $20 to just enjoy the club-like atmosphere. —Alex Owens is a San Diego-based freelance writer. He “We’re going to use ever y tool at our disposal,” can be reached at

Fluxx patrons ‘spin’ around dance floor for upcoming event


Exploring Balboa Park Johnny McDonald Weathering the plants A spokesperson for the Natural History Museum said it was bizarre the way San Diego’s weather pattern has changed the growth cycle of plant life. “It started out okay this year, but after the unseasonable Santa Ana winds, everything dried up so quickly; much, much shorter than it usually does,” said Dr. Jon Rebman, the museum’s botany curator. “Plants sprouted a month earlier on the coast then died off from unseasonable Santa Ana winds,” Rebman said. “It shortened our ability to assess because the annuals [plants] are real fragile.” Then there was a reverse trend in the desert. “People were cheering because there was hardly any Sahara mustard, which usually takes over blooming flowers,” he added. Rebman said though he’s not a big horticulturist, he is a proponent of irrigation. “Grow a lot of succulents,” he said. “They adapt very easily in our climate, which is like the Mediterranean, and they make stunning landscapes for a fraction of the cost of grass and that kind of stuff.” He pointed out that San Diego Zoo’s varied plants from all over the world are a good indication that anything can grow here. “Who knows what makes up our diversity which is timed by rainfall,” he said. “Those Santa Anas in the middle of our normal rain season were truly unusual.” Rebman said he spends a good deal of time in Mexico, where he studies the mountain ranges there and often brings back specimens for further review. The Botany Department houses a research collection of nearly 250,000 specimens of native and naturalized plants of the southwestern United States and Baja California. For those interested, there are about 400 type specimens with hi-resolution scans available to search online. Big top science  Reuben H. Fleet Science Center is unveiling a summer exhibition called “CIRCUS: Sci-

ence Under the Big Top.” It will feature 20 interactive exhibits from clown makeup to the art of contortion to animal communication. Visitors can experience the tricks of sword swallowing, the illusion of the flea circus, juggling and acrobatics. They can also test how their center of gravity works on the balance bar. The “feats of strength” exhibit will show how leverage, compression and tension are used. “Science is everywhere you look,” said Steve Snyder, CEO of the Fleet Science Center. “Scientific concepts have been incorporated into performance and entertainment for centuries. An exhibition such as CIRCUS: Science Under the Big Top gives a context for understanding science outside of the typical realms of classrooms and labs.” Elsewhere in the Park — Museums gear up for the second quarter of the Centennial, with an assortment of special exhibitions when the summer vacationers begin to fill the park. A few highlights: • House of Pacific Relations | May 24 — 35th annual Ethnic Food Fair where over 30 different cultures in traditional costumes present popular dishes, desserts, and beverages and display. • Spanish Village Art Center | May 9 – 10 — Art Glass Guild’s patio show and sale with over 30 juried artists. All forms of art glass: torch worked, blown, fused, cast, stained, etched, mosaic and more. • Spanish Village Art Center | May 16 – 24 — A continual display of polymer clay work in Galler y 21 and demonstrations on the patio by world-renowned masters and local artists. • Timken Museum of Art | May 11 – Sept. 11 — A special display on loan of one of Vermeer’s most beautiful paintings that demonstrates the artist’s exceptional command of color, light and perspective.    —After an award-winning, 38-year sports-writing career with the San Diego Union and authoring three books, Johnny McDonald now considers writing a hobby. You can reach him at


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What it takes Civic Organist News Dr. Carol Williams I sit at my comfortable desk in my beautiful home on my wonderful ranch with all the conveniences that anyone could ask for in life. I sit here ready to prepare a musical program for a 12-hour concert I will perform. I am also in thought about what to write for this month’s article, which will be about that benefit concert for our returning injured troops and first responders and then, I realize that courage has a lot to do with all these thoughts. Courage comes in many shapes, sizes and forms. It takes courage for me to think I can perform for 12 hours straight and yet, that same courage flows over a young person’s body, empowering them to walk with a weapon through the gates of hell to protect what is just. What is this thing? Somehow courage enables us. Does it make us superhuman? When I was a student performing for competitions, I would feel morbidly ill before ever y event; totally sick to my stomach. My ner ves would run havoc on me until I sat down at the keyboards. At that moment sitting at the organ, my focus moved to my task and a calm would came over me. Then my performance would begin. Was that courage that enabled me walk on stage? My husband was in the Special Forces during Desert Storm. He describes courage during battle like this: “Courage comes when you feel like you just walked into a wall of terror and fear suddenly sweeps over your entire body, making every nerve violently vibrate almost out of control. Then just as quickly as it starts its effect, it dissipates with courage.” Courage is simply a pure thought of doing what is right. It makes you feel invincible. Some troops find it with the help of their God, some find it simply with the knowledge of doing what is right; the knowledge that they are protecting the comforts of liberty here at home and in the free world. First responders have it when they run into a burning building, or when they run towards violent danger to protect lives. Like some kind of chemical hormone that the body produces, courage gives people tremendous strength like a superpower feeling. We all produce certain amounts of courage everyday, each to our own capability. We all have our fears and they are all legitimate and equally scary to each of us on our own journey in life. We overcome our fears, doubts and the unknown


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015 with this same courage. On May 24, I will be addressing the special courage it takes to open your eyes in a hospital bed and see that you no longer have the body you were born with. That Sunday, I will be performing a 12-hour benefit concert to raise money for the Challenged Athlete Foundation’s “Operation Rebound,” to help these injured returning troops and first responders, men and women who wake up to this new reality and yet bring courage to embrace their new life. We all sit in our own comfortable place, perhaps reading this article, with all the conveniences around us in these United States. Only now, I hope you will have a deeper understanding of what this independence is worth. I can tell you that the payment for this liberty and freedom is made possible by courage. Please visit the Spreckels Organ Pavilion Sunday, May 24, to enjoy 12 hours of music, meet and talk with people who care, and donate, OR go to my website Click


on the military dog tag to donate online. Have the courage to help. —Civic Organist Carol Williams is proud to serve as an ambassador of San Diego’s arts and culture arena. Through her concert performances at home and abroad, Carol offers a fresh take on the classical organ concert. She is committed to illuminating San Diego’s colorful romance with the “King of Instruments,” always seeking to bring the organ to new audiences. For more information visit

BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT Renaissance Village Academy 9988 Hibert St., #301, San Diego, CA 92131 858-564-9622 | “School’s borrrrrrring.” How many times have you heard that from your child? Rote drill, work sheets, test, test, test. Evenings spent overseeing the seemingly endless homework. Renaissance Village Academy is different; a private, non-religious school for parents interested in challenging their bright children. RVA is designed to meet the unique needs of gifted, profoundly gifted, and highly motivated students in a caring environment. The format is open and flows with the needs and interests of the students, while maintaining high academic standards. Placement in each subject is based on individual needs, not age. RVA’s philosophy is that learning should be done at school, where the children can get the help they need, so work isn’t sent home. To accommodate this, the school day is longer … and yet our biggest problem is getting the kids to leave at the end of the day. RVA: Where students rediscover the JOY of learning.

Downtown’s Sudoku Puzzle DIRECTIONS: Enter digits from 1 to 9 into the blank spaces. Every row must contain one of each digit. So must every column, as must every 3x3 square.

Sudoku Solution Answer Key, page 20





San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


A fiesta celebrating Cinco de Mayo will take over the courtyard at The Headquarters at Seaport District from 4 – 10 p.m., May 5, with cocktails, live Latin music and $2 tacos presented by Puesto. In addition, churros from nearby Donut Bar will be available. (To learn more about Puesto’s cutting-edge tacos, check out our dining review in this issue.) 789 W. Harbor Drive, 619-233-8880. Tijuana-style hot dogs, ahi tacos and french fries crowned in either truffle butter or New York strip steak are among the sinful savories baseball fans will find at The Patio in Left Field, which opened this season in Petco Park’s left field sections 128 and 228. The walk-up kitchen offers ample patio seating. The venture is operated by The Patio Group, which also runs The Swell Café & Coffee Roasting Company throughout the stadium, in addition to restaurants in Pacific Beach and Mission Hills. 100 Park Blvd., Chef de cuisine Sam Burman of Grant Grill recently left San Diego with wife and baby to be closer to family in Chicago. The former Hillcrest resident, known for his backyard pit-smoking and for helping to modernize Grant Grill’s menu over the past year, is reportedly eyeing a still-undisclosed project after he settles into his new digs. Execuctive Chef (and avid fisherman) Mark Kropczynski will oversee the menu until a replacement is made. 326 Broadway, 619-744-2077.

Dario Gallo prepares Civico 1845 for a mid-May opening. (Courtesy J Walcher Communications) Brothers Pietro and Dario Gallo, a vegan and carnivore respectively, are opening Civico 1845 in Little Italy in mid-May after operating a restaurant in their native Cosenza, Italy for a few years. The 1,500-square-foot space, pronounced CHEE-vee-ko, replaces Zia’s Bistro and will offer a menu inspired partly by Pietro’s veganism. For all of the dishes, however, they promise a repertoire of authentic, yet contemporary Italian cuisine with a healthy slant. 1845 India St., Chef Christian Graves of Jsix is continuing his series of “Chew” cooking classes at 6 p.m., ever y Tuesday during the month of May. Held in the restaurant’s lounge, participants are afforded a meal and two drinks from the bar. The lineup features cures, cultures and canning on May 12; pickles three ways on May 19 and preser ves on May 26. The cost is $40 per class. Then starting June 1, Graves will hold a series of collaborative dinners with other local chefs at 6 p.m. ever y Monday through June 29. Each four-course dinner will focus on a particular theme or ingredient, kicking off with lobster. The price is $40. Reser vations are required. 616 J St., 619-531-8744

Termed by some as “the Coachella of bacon,” the third annual Bacon and Barrels festival returns to San Diego from noon to 5 p.m., May 9, at the Embarcadero Marina Park South, where dozens of local chefs will incorporate the cured meat into a variety of sweets and savories. Wineries, breweries and Bacon cupcakes from the upcoming Bacon small-batch distilleries from Southern California and Barrels festival (Photo by Jeremy Ball) will also be on-site doling samples of their latest and greatest releases in addition to cooking demos, culinar y competitions and live music. General admission is $50 or $20 for designated drivers. A portion of proceeds will benefit under-ser ved children and the Create Community Foundation. 1 Marina Park Way,

Pancake and bacon sticks at Seaview Restaurant (Courtesy J Public Relations) Breakfast on the bay at Manchester Grand Hyatt comes with a renewed look and menu since the hotel recently gave its Seaview Restaurant an extensive remodel. Open to visitors and locals alike, the space was transformed from multi to single level, with a coastal design flowing out to an expansive bayfront patio. New dishes include lump crab eggs Benedict, pancakes with bacon sticks and several cocktails. Hours are from 6:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. Monday through Friday, and until 11:30 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. One Market Place, 619619-358-6735 Exclusive wines from Napa Valley’s Domaine Carneros will be paired to a four-course dinner available from 5:30 –10 p.m., May 12, at 1500 Ocean in the Hotel del Coronado. Among the matchups are 2012 Palmer Chardonnay poured with Pacific halibut served with basil and heirloom tomatoes from the hotel’s garden, and 2012 Estate Pinor Noir served with braised beef cheeks and foie gras. The cost is $150 (or $95 without the wine pairings.) 1500 Orange Ave., 619-522-8490.

Saltbox’s seasonal whole-pig roast returns (Courtesy the Nth Element) The chefs at Saltbox are gearing up for their traditional spring pig roast, which kicks off at 1 p.m., May 17 at the Summer Salt Pool Lounge atop Hotel Palomar. This year’s event spotlights Henebery Whiskey, which will appear in cocktails, including a free one offered to arriving guests. In addition to meat from the whole-roasted porker, the meal comes with corn bread and locally grown veggies such as heirloom beans and braised greens with house-cured bacon. The cost is $20. 1047 Fifth Ave., (fourth floor) 619-515-3003. —Frank Sabatini Jr. can be reached at PUZZLE SOLUTION FROM PG. 19


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015



789 W. Harbor Drive

(The Headquarters at Seaport District)

Mighty tacos


Prices: Starters and salads, $8 to $13; tacos and bowls, $13 to $20

(clockwise, from above) A colorful array of tacos at Puesto (Courtesy Puesto); Caesar octopus salad; the new “rumchata” cocktail; Tamarind shrimp (left) and wild cod tacos; grilled corn (Photos by Frank Sabatini Jr.)

Restaurant Review Frank Sabatini Jr.


efore the gourmet-taco craze hit, Puesto was already ahead of the game by filling tortillas with things like braised lamb, filet mignon and beer-battered cod. Add to its repertoire inventive meal bowls and guacamole prepared four different ways, and you end up with an enlightening taste of Mexico City’s progressive culinary scene. Mexican-American brothers Eric and Alan Adler launched Puesto in La Jolla a couple years ago before opening a bigger and flashier offshoot in The Headquarters at Seaport District. Set within the circa-1939 complex that once served as home base for the San Diego Police Department, they recruited acclaimed designer Thomas Schoos and spray paint muralist Chor Boogie to create an indoor-outdoor restaurant that feels part West Hollywood, part East LA A few vestiges from the old precinct days are cleverly incorporated into the remodel, such as a rusty staircase dropping from the ceiling and a wall revealing peeled paint and corroded piping. But it is Boogie’s giant, riotous mural dominating an inside dining area that steals the show. Puesto’s recent partnership with local rum distiller, Malahat Spirits Company, has spawned an off-menu cocktail called “rumchata.” It’s a must-try blend of creamy house-made horchata (cinnamon rice milk) and small-batch white rum that’s innocent on the palate and devilish in the bloodstream. A comprehensive selection of tequila is also in the offing along with specialty cocktails, Baja wines and lively sangrias. Much of the menu is authored by Chef Luis Gonzalez, a native of Mexico City who exposes us to the modern tenets of his country’s cuisine. From the guacamole list, for example, his “Puesto perfect” version is spiked with habanero peppers and tangy Parmesan Reggiano, which tasted surprisingly at home in the chunky mash. You can also order your guac mixed with pomegranate and candied walnuts or lump crab. For traditionalists, there’s “plain and simple.” The twist in Gonzalez’s ceviche de Acapulco is chili de arbol, a garlicky and intensely

smoked salsa that amplified the flavor of the lime and cilantro, yet miraculously doesn’t destroy the essence of the sea bass. Even the Caesar salad treks into novel territory with the addition of octopus “croutons,” which equate to tender barrel-shaped cuts of the tentacles, breaded and fried. Exaggerated plays on street tacos have given Puesto its competitive edge. Served mostly in mixand-match trios, choices include zucchini-cactus, poblano chilies with oyster mushrooms, chicken mole with sesame and other constructs absent from Mexico’s humble food carts but flourishing within the country’s chic, urban restaurants.

The richest and most luxurious of them all is the open-face filet mignon taco featuring toasted white cheese swaddling the meat on a bed of fresh avocado and pistachiojalapeno sauce. It’s a calorie bomb worth every bite. The kitchen was out of braised lamb, so we jumped on a lobster taco instead. Despite a tangle of fried onions and squiggles of cilantro crema on top, the pieces of tail meat underneath were detectably sweet. Never before had I encountered a Baja fish taco containing wild cod encased in blood orange beer batter. My companion termed it as “flat” while I remained awestruck right down to the last shred of

cabbage. The fish was remarkably moist, accented with a light fruity flavor from the orange. And as far as beer batters go, I was actually able to taste the suds in this one. Concluding our lineup was a pair of crispy shrimp tacos slathered in tamarind-chili sauce — about a tablespoon too much for my liking. Served on herbed tortillas with cilantro and lime-spiked guacamole, the shrimp screamed for recognition. Throughout our meal, we dabbled in a bowl of roasted corn (esquite) accented gorgeously with lime, chili powder and crema. The portion was substantial, yielding enough for two people and a doggy bag. Tres leches sponge cake soaked in sweet cream and gar-

nished with guava jelly, plus an ice cream sandwich constructed with thin, delicate tortillas and drizzled in coconut-chocolate sauce concluded our vibrant meal. “Not your average Mexican restaurant,” my companion said enthusiastically as we drove out of The Headquarters’ cone-infested parking lot, which costs $4 for three hours. He thought we were going to a place serving everyday tacos. But it turned out to be very much the opposite. —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career more than two decades ago as a staffer for the former San Diego Tribune. You can reach him at


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

DOWNTOWN CALENDAR FRIDAY – MAY 1 Friday Night Liberty: Large art walk on the first Friday of each month. Free open artist studios, galleries and performances. 5 – 8 p.m. NTC at Liberty Station, 2640 Historic Decatur Road. Visit Exhibit ‘Through A Mother’s Eye’: Free admission to see this exhibit with wine and snacks ser ved. 5 p.m. Women’s Museum of California, 2730 Historic Decatur Rd., Barracks 16, Liberty Station. Visit SATURDAY – MAY 2 ‘What’s the big IDEA?’ workshop: Free community workshop exploring “active urban planning opportunities” in upper East Village. 9 a.m. – noon. NewSchool of Architecture and Design Auditorium, 1249 F St., East Village. Visit Tacos and Tequila Festival: Event includes margarita and beer samples plus signature tacos from local restaurants; plus entertainment by live bands and a DJ. $35. 1 – 5 p.m. SILO in Makers Quarter, 753 15th St., East Village. Visit SUNDAY – MAY 3 ‘Once Upon A Tiempo Mariachi Spectacular’: Classic 4 Kids presents one of three seasonal concerts conducted by Dana Zimbric and performed by the Classics Philharmonic Professional Symphony Orchestra. 2 p.m. Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. Visit MONDAY – MAY 4 Film Forum: Free screening of “A Most Violent Year” starring Jessica Chastain and Albert Brooks. 6:30 p.m. Auditorium, San Diego Central Library, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Visit facebook. com/freelibrarymovies.

TUESDAY – MAY 5 — CINCO DE MAYO Cinco de Mayo Concer t in the Park: Free concer t with ensembles from the SDSU School of Music and Dance. 6 p.m. Spreckels Organ Pavilion, 1549 El Prado, Balboa Park. Visit San Diego Shakespeare Society: First Tuesday of the month. Acting workshop night. Anyone can join in or just listen. Informal café-style seating. Tonight – “King Lear.” 6:45 – 8:30 p.m. Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse, 835C W. Harbor Dr., Seaport Village. Free. Visit or call 619-333-0141. ‘Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella’: The Tony Award-winning Broadway musical opens tonight with additional performances May 6 - 10. 7 p.m. Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., Downtown. Visit WEDNESDAY – MAY 6 Career Accelerator Series: Three-part series hosted on consecutive Wednesdays by business professionals and other facilitators from the San Diego area. Noon – 2 p.m. Additional sessions on May 13 and 20. Co-Merge Workplace, 330 A St., Downtown. Visit THURSDAY – MAY 7 HireLive Sales and Management Career Fair: Free event for job seekers with opportunities for inside and outside sales reps, account executives, retail managers, customer service and much more. 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Embassy Suites Hotel, 601 Pacific Hwy, Marina. Visit Architectural Precedents for Balboa Park: A presentation on the inspiration from Spain, Mexico and Egypt on the architecture and gardens of Balboa Park with presenter David Marshall. 6 – 7 p.m. Auditorium, San Diego Central

CALENDAR Library, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Visit Gator by the Bay: This annual zydeco, blues and crawfish festival starts tonight and continues through the weekend. Spanish Landing Park on North Harbor Drive, Downtown. Visit

FRIDAY – MAY 8 Lunchtime shop and stroll: Free, 30-minute guided walk held twice monthly by San Diego Downtown Partnership. Begins at noon at Bubs at the Ballpark, 715 J St., East Village. Visit SATURDAY – MAY 9 Walk for the Animals: Paws in the Park: A two-mile walk hosted by San Diego Humane Society raising funds for homeless animals. 7 a.m. NTC Park at Liberty Station, 2455 Cushing Road. Visit San Diego Ballet 25th anniversar y gala: Event will include cocktail reception, silent and live auctions, dinner and dancing. 4:30 p.m. The Westin Gaslamp Quarter, 910 Broadway Circle. Visit ‘Arms and The Man’: Previews start tonight for this romantic comedy by George Bernard Shaw. Opens May 14, runs through June 14. Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park. Tickets start $29. Visit or call 619-234-5623. SUNDAY – MAY 10 – MOTHER’S DAY Mother’s Day cruises: Hornblower offers three brunch cruises and an evening dinner cruise for Mother’s Day. Brunch times begin at 9 a.m., the dinner cruise boards at 5:30 p.m. Visit San Diego Great Books: Free discussion group, open to the public. This month’s reading: “The Rat Man Case Study” based on the work of Sigmund Freud. 2 – 4 p.m. Room 221, San Diego Central Librar y, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Visit MONDAY – MAY 11 The Gaslamp Hogue Golf Tournament: This serves as a fundraiser for the Gaslamp Quarter Association and gives Gaslamp businesses a chance to meet one another. Noon. Riverwalk Golf Club, 1150 Fashion Valley Road. Visit Film Forum: Free screening of “You’re Not You” starring Hilary Swank, Emmy Rossum and Josh Duhamel. 6:30 p.m. Auditorium, San Diego Central Library, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Visit TUESDAY – MAY 12 Globe Guilders Fashion Show: Proceeds from this fashion show benefit the artistic and education programs of The Old Globe. 10 a.m. Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel, 1 Park Blvd., Marina District. Visit WEDNESDAY – MAY 13 Wine and Canvas: Step-bystep instruction and materials included, create 16-by-20-inch gallery-wrapped canvas painting. Tonight: “Ocean Beach Pier.” No outside food or drinks — both available for purchase. $35 per person. 6 – 9 p.m. Fifty Seven Degrees – 1735 Hancock St., Middletown. Visit THURSDAY – MAY 14 ‘Stretch Yourself ’ yoga classes: A twice monthly yoga class and outdoor locations throughout Downtown. 6 p.m. Horton Square/NBC Plaza, 225 Broadway Circle, Downtown. Visit FRIDAY – MAY 15 Wine and Canvas: Step-bystep instruction and materials included, create 16-by-20-inch gallery-wrapped canvas painting. Tonight: “Spring Blossoms.” No outside food or drinks — both available for purchase. $35 per person. 6 – 9 p.m. Fabrison’s French Creperie, 1425 India St., Little Italy. Visit SATURDAY – MAY 16 ‘Star Wars’ Day: The Central Library is hosting their second annual “Star Wars” Day with

costumed guests, crafts, Jedi storytime, and a costume contest. Noon – 4 p.m. San Diego Central Library, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Visit San Diego Padres: Come watch our Padres battle the Nationals at 5:40 p.m., and get a Padres hoodie presented by Toyota. Petco Park, 100 Park Blvd., East Village. Tickets at

SUNDAY – MAY 17 Brew Rendezvous: Third annual event by Community Health Improvement Partners featuring food and craft beer. 1 – 4 p.m. SILO in Makers Quarter, 753 15th St., East Village. Visit SDChip. org/brew. ‘Broadway, Our Way’: Frenchie Davis will join the San Diego Women’s Chorus for this fundraising performance benefitting the Lesbian Health Initiative of the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. 7 p.m. Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Gaslamp. Visit MONDAY – MAY 18 Spring wine and dinner series: This installment explores wines of Burgundy including Chablis, Cote de Nuit and Cote de Beaune. 6:30 p.m. Stake Chophouse, 1309 Orange Ave., Coronado. Visit TUESDAY – MAY 19 Live Comedy: Actor-comedian John Leguizamo presents “Latin History for Dummies – A Reading and Work in Progress.” Performing for three nights. 8 p.m. American Comedy Company, 818 B Sixth Ave., Gaslamp. Tickets $25. WEDNESDAY – MAY 20 Grunion run: These events follow high tides when the grunions come for a mating ritual on shore. $14 for members, $16 for the public. 10:30 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. Birch Aquarium, 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla. Visit THURSDAY – MAY 21 ‘Recipe for a Healthy and Delicious Spring’ cooking class: Free monthly class by Scripps nutritionists. This month features: steak and veggie kabobs, grilled romaine and quick, frozen strawberry yogurt. 6 p.m. Jimbo’s… Naturally!, 324 Horton Plaza, Downtown. Visit FRIDAY – MAY 22 Rock in the Park: For the second year, this concert series will bring a variety of bands to Reuben H. Fleet Science Center once a month. This show features Steve Poltz with Michael Tiernan opening. 7:30 p.m., 1875 El Prado, Balboa Park. Visit SATURDAY – MAY 23 ‘Rich Girl’: Previews start tonight for this retelling of the Henry James novel “Washington Square.” Opens May 28, runs through June 21. Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park. Tickets start $29. Visit or call 619-234-5623. Paranormal Investigation: Once a month, these investigations visit the “most haunted house in the Gaslamp.” The tour lasts two hours and guests can bring cameras and video and digital recorders but no professional media equipment. Limited to 20 people. 10 p.m. William Heath Davis House, 410 Island Ave., Gaslamp. Visit

see Calendar, page 23


Fashion Files Diana Cavagnaro Street Style

The Art Institute of CaliforniaSan Diego presented Street Style at The Horton Grand Hotel on March 27. This fashion event was held to give dogs a second chance. The marketing students of the Art Institute of California-San Diego organized the production with a theme of street style fashions. Everyone was encouraged to arrive “dressed to impress,” showing off a style with a funky edge. Designer Andre Soriano was emcee for the evening while getting the festivities started. Soriano is a celebrity fashion designer and reality star of “Styled to Rock.” The fashion show showcased designs by Limited Edition Eccoci Collection, which can be found at the Viejas Outlet in Alpine. The styles are casual chic with a European flair and moderately priced. The runway went through the audience giving them an up close look as the models strutted their stuff. Proceeds for the evening went to Second Chance Dog Rescue, a nonprofit dedicated to rescuing dogs, though they don’t have a central shelter; they puts all the dogs in private volunteer foster homes. Their events help raise funds for the dogs and give awareness to the community. For more information visit


Stephen Fishwick’s Fine Art Collection presented an event with art and pets on April 25 at his studio at The Centre in Escondido. The event had a fun fashion show with all the furry creatures


CALENDAR SUNDAY – MAY 24 Coronado Concert Series: Free concert with Three Chord Justice, 2 – 5 p.m. Coronado Ferry Landing, 1201 First St. at B Avenue. Visit MONDAY – MAY 25 – MEMORIAL DAY Memorial Day BBQ Brunch Cruise: This event will include a BBQ brunch buffet, free flowing champagne and beer and DJ entertainment aboard a Hornblower yacht. Boarding 10:30 a.m. Hornblower Landing at Grape Street Pier, 1800 N. Harbor Drive, Marina District. Visit TUESDAY – MAY 26 Live Music: presents a showcase of local talents including Heartbeat Dupree, Levi James, Jagged Lines, Jessica Hull Band and Shifty-Eye Dogs. No cover. 7 – 11 p.m. House of Blues, 1055 Fifth Ave., Downtown. Visit WEDNESDAY – MAY 27 Voices for Children presents ‘The Real World’: This special event will include foster care children speaking about the impor tance of CASAs (Cour t Appointed Special Advocates). 6 – 7:30 p.m. Ninth Floor, San Diego Central Librar y, 330 Park Blvd., Downtown. Register at 858-598-2235. Visit sandiegolibrar

decked out in their favorite outfits. The winners were Lambchop, a Bedlington Terrier, who won Best in Show, Lola won the ‘Awe’ Award for the cutest dog, and Copper, a Shichon, for the most creative. A sampling of Stephen Fishwick’s Fine Art surrounded the event demonstrating his love of animals. Award-winning artist Nate Kapnicky of “littlebeasties” was on hand to draw your pet. The San Diego Humane Society benefitted with 50 percent of the proceeds going to them. They are a nonprofit shelter that provides adoption, veterinarian services and obedience training classes for dogs. For more information visit

C –Pardo

Carolyn Pardo Moore presented Sensual Sadness Art & Fashion show on April 25 at La Bodega Gallery. The evening combined fashion, art, and music to partner with a charity to help victims of sexual abuse. The proceeds benefit the sexual abuse prevention charity Manos Entrelazadas. As a victim herself, Pardo has shown how you can turn a negative childhood experience into a positive by creating awareness and much-needed funds. Guests arrived to mix and mingle surrounded by Pardo’s artwork while the band Luneaux entertained the crowd. Pardo is an established artist who also showed her talent in music by singing two songs with the band. The night finished up with a fashion show featuring the debut of Pardo’s first clothing collection. G-Star RAW provided the undergarments for the models. The fashion show presented clever segments in which six models came out on the runway and posed with two models on chairs. The models then turned 180 degrees to have

THURSDAY – MAY 28 Contractors, Developers and Designers Mixer: A mixer for members of the Downtown San Diego Partnership celebrating the aforementioned careers. 5 – 7 p.m. Cavignac and Associates, 450 B St., 18th floor, Downtown. RSVP (required) to rsvp@ FRIDAY – MAY 29 Lunchtime shop and stroll: Free, 30-minute guided walk held twice monthly by San Diego Downtown Partnership. Begins at noon at The Headquarters, 789 West Harbor Drive, Marina District. Visit Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon weekend: This weekend event starts with a health and fitness expo opening today at the San Diego Convention Center (Halls B – 2C) and continuing with a 5k on Saturday and the marathon and half marathon on Sunday. Visit SATURDAY – MAY 30 Gaslamp Neighborhood Clean Up: Volunteer event presented by Downtown Ace Hardware. 8 a.m. Pocket Park at the Gaslamp Museum, 410 Island Ave., Gaslamp Quarter. Visit or call 619233-5227. ‘Stretch Yourself’ yoga classes: A twice monthly yoga class and outdoor locations throughout Downtown. 9 a.m. The Headquarters, 789 West Harbor Drive, Marina District. Visit Craft Beer ‘n’ Bites: The fourth edition of this event will feature 15 of San Diego newest breweries along with food trucks, games, live music and art. $25. 3 – 7 p.m. SILO in Makers Quarters, 753 15th St., East Village. Visit

San Diego Downtown News | May 2015


their backsides showing to the audience. After pausing for a minute they turned and left the runway for a unique approach to presenting a fashion show. La Bodega Gallery is a historic building that opened as an art space in January. This was a vacant warehouse that was converted into a gallery and artist studios. David Gough Hart was in his Planet Mercury Studio/Gallery to show visitors his artwork with alchemical properties. La Bodega Gallery & Studios is located at 2196 Logan Ave. Call for hours 619-255-7036.

Upcoming Events

May 8 | Golden Scissors — a fashion and awards show at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina at 5:30 p.m. hosted by San Diego Mesa College. Tickets at May 12 | Globes Guilders “Celebrating Couture” — a luncheon and fashion show presented by Neiman Marcus featuring the designer Naeem Khan at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. Proceeds benefit The Old Globe. Reser vations at globeguilders. org/fashionshow. May 15 | “Couture & Cocktails” — Annual Lizz Russell Collection Fashion Show at the Westgate Hotel in the Versailles Ballroom beginning at 6:30 p.m. A portion of the proceeds to benefit The GBS/CIDP Foundation International. Reservations at —Diana Cavagnaro is an internationally renowned couture milliner based in the Historic Gaslamp Quarter. Learn more about our hat designer, teacher and blogger at DianaCavagnaro.comv

SUNDAY – MAY 31 Coronado Concert Series: Free concert with Ginger Cowgirl and The Silver Spurs, 2 – 5 p.m. Coronado Ferry Landing, 1201 First St. at B Avenue. Visit MONDAY - JUNE 1 Live Music: Canadian rock band Mother Mother and local alt-rockers The Verigolds perform. 9 p.m. Casbah, 2501 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy. Visit TUESDAY - JUNE 2 San Diego Shakespeare Society: First Tuesday of the month. Acting workshop night. Anyone can join in or just listen. Informal café-style seating. Tonight – “Upstart Crow Idol” – read in front of three judges. 6:45 – 8:30 p.m. Upstart Crow Bookstore and Coffeehouse, 835C W. Harbor Dr., Seaport Village. Free. Visit upstartcrowtrading. com or call 619-333-0141. WEDNESDAY - JUNE 3 ‘Drop dead delicious knockoffs’ baking class: Lesson on preparing home made versions of Ding Dongs, Ho Hos and Oreos. $75. 6 – 9 p.m. Bake Sale, 815 F St., Downtown. Visit THURSDAY - JUNE 4 East Village Association Board meeting: All monthly board meetings are open to the public. 5 p.m. Room 219, Thomas Jefferson School of Law, 1155 Island Ave. Visit  —Please send items for inclusion to Editor Morgan M. Hurley at

(top) Presentation of Carolyn Pardo’s first fashion collection; (center) Lola won the ‘Awe’ award for the cutest at Pawzapalooza; Street Style models show off Limited Edition Eccoci Collection (Photos by Diana Cavagnaro)


San Diego Downtown News | May 2015

San diego downtown news may 2015  


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