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Serving San Diego’s Premier Urban Communities for 21 Years

Vol. 21 No. 7 July 2013




2015 Bethel Nathan officiates at the ceremony of Carrie Dunnagan and Alynn Silliman of North Park. (Photo by She Wanders Photography)

Bethel Nathan offers non-traditional wedding ceremonies that are fun, personal and meaningful BY DELLE WILLETT

Getting married? Looking for a new and different twist to an old and traditional ceremony? You’ll want to talk to Bethel Nathan. Within 10 seconds she’ll tell you, “I’m not your typical clergy by any stretch.” Though she emphasizes she is not religious clergy, Bethel, a North Park resident, was ordained online through the Church of Spiritual Humanism and the Universal Life Church, meeting the state of California requirements. There’s no Justice of the Peace in California. “I’m the closest you can get to one.” “Couples come to me when they want something about them, about their commitment to each other. They

want something that is fun, personal, meaningful and non-religious,” says Bethel. They want something celebrating who they are together, in front of people who mean the most to them. Bethel does as many commitment ceremonies for gay couples as possible. “The day it’s all legal again I will spend all day at the county offices signing licenses. That will be one of the happiest days of my life — being able to sign licenses for couples I couldn’t do so before.” No charge! She calls her business Ceremonies by Bethel. Bethel spends 15 to 20 hours on each ceremony. This doesn’t include any of

the planning; she leaves that up to the couple and the wedding planners. She does, however, make recommendations, if they would like. “By the time the ceremony comes around we’ve gotten to know each other so well it looks like they have a friend up there. Not a random minister.” Bethel starts the process by giving the couple individual homework assignments to prepare for the wedding ceremony. And if a couple doesn’t want to do it, she doesn’t accept them. Using what each has written, she pulls their stories together to create the personalized ceremony. Most couples are raised with some

sort of religion but don’t feel connected to it — they don’t have a traditional voice such as a pastor or a rabbi. Some couples prefer to say their vows and speak for themselves, others prefer for her to be their voice and they just answer questions. “That’s why I do what I do. I love being the voice for them in this entire process.” If couples want a little religion she’s OK with that; usually it’s to make the moms and grandmothers happy. Later, she loves hearing from the couples that the ceremony was their favorite part of the day, not the party afterwards. SEE WEDDINGS, Page 10

Celebration to focus on innovation, cultural heritage, outdoor lifestyle, entertainment A yearlong celebration of Balboa Park’s centennial in 2015 will focus on San Diego’s innovative contributions, cultural heritage, outdoor lifestyle and entertainment, according to a presentation delivered to the City Council’s Natural Resources and Culture Committee. The “Innovation Station” will underscore San Diego as a creative city through exhibitions, forums and interactive displays, said John DeBello, a principal with marketing consultant Loma Media. “Celebration Plaza” will be an international village that celebrates “the cultural fabric of today’s San Diego,” SEE CENTENNIAL, Page 12

NORTH PARK SCENE The Rise of the Downtown Partnership

Hillcrest Wind Ensemble Plays the Lafayette Hotel The Hillcrest Wind Ensemble celebrates “The Big Apple” at the Mississippi Room in the Lafayette Hotel, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., on Saturday July 27. Music from Broadway and of the Big Band era will fill the historic ballroom. Among the Broadway musicals featured, the 45-piece ensemble will perform music from “Les Misérables” and “Chicago.” The Mississippi Room will be transformed into a 1940s cabaret with food and drink available. Music of Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington and other greats will be featured in a salute to the big bands, some of which actually played this venue. The ballSEE SCENE, Page 5


When the Downtown San Diego Partnership finishes reinventing itself, it’ll look like a Chamber of Commerce with certain government powers. And that’s exactly what its chief has in mind. “Some of the things we’re getting involved in, 20 years ago I never would have said private organizations should be getting involved in,” said the organi-

zation’s president and CEO, Kris Michell. Until now, the organization has had two primary functions. One is economic development. It’s a nonprofit group with paying members that advocates for Downtown. It’s crafting a neighborhood brand and trying to attract businesses. The other is as the manager of the SEE PARTNERSHIP, Page 6

As president and CEO of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, Kris Michell is overseeing the Downtown organization.

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(619) 889-5420 | |

A F TO N S E L L S S A N D I E G O Specializing in North Park and Metro Area since 1986 SOLD - $545,000

SOLD - $746,000

SOLD! - $605,000

SOLD - $692,000

SOLD - $565,000

SOLD - $682,500

3687 4th #408 | 2br 2ba *

2735 33rd St | 4br 4.5ba

4632 Marlborough | 2br 1.5ba

2914 Redwood St | 3br 3ba

4365 Alder Dr | 3br 2ba

4806 Sussex | 3br 1.5ba

SOLD - $339,000

SOLD - $441,000

SOLD - $458,000

SOLD - $845,000

SOLD - $460,000

SOLD - $750,000

2504 54th | 3br 1ba

4615 Altadena | 2br+den 2ba

3412 32nd D, 2br+loft

3415 Villa Terrace | 3br 2ba

2515 30th St. | 2br 1ba

3795 Alabama | 4 units

SOLD - $665,000

SOLD - $153,000

SOLD - $387,000

SOLD - $640,000

SOLD - $632,000

SOLD - $510,000

4654 Natalie | 3br 2ba

4545 Collwood #57 | 1br 1ba

4502 Euclid Ave | 2br 1ba

3210-12 Felton St | 2br units

4624 Lucille Dr | 3br 2ba

3788 Park #4 | work/live

SOLD - $746,000

SOLD - $469,000

SOLD - $800,500

SOLD - $530,000

SOLD - $452,000

SOLD - $559,000

4604 Edgeware | 3 units

4677 Winona | 3br 2ba

4165 Middlesex | 3br 2ba

4720 51st | 3br 2ba

2320 Landis | 2br 2ba

4812 50th | 4br 2ba *

SOLD - $550,000

SOLD - $429,000

IN ESCROW - $299,000

4912 Lorraine Drive | 2 br 1.5ba

5621 Adelaide | 2br 2ba

3611 Ray | 1br fixer

IN ESCROW - $665,000

IN ESCROW - $389,000

IN ESCROW - $629,000

4215 Alder | 3br 1ba

3585 Redwood St. | 2br 1ba

3256 N Mtn View | 3br 2ba

IN ESCROW - $349,000

IN ESCROW - $589,000

IN ESCROW - $695,000

NEW LISTING! $599,000 | 3448 Palm Street, North Park

2br 2ba Beautiful Tudor Revival! Hardwood floors, fireplace, lots of light, gumwood trim galore, coved ceilings. Remodeled kitchen, breakfast room, laundry room, double garage. Remodeled master bath, hall bath features clawfoot tub. Many upgrades and a great combination of taste and excellent craftsmanship.

AVAILABLE! $689,000 to $715,000 | 2736 Teresita St. 1445 32nd | 1br fixer

4780 49th | 3br 2ba

4488 41st | 3br 2ba

IN ESCROW - $439,000

IN ESCROW - $519,000

IN ESCROW - $469,000

3521 Nile | 2br 1ba

4535 49th | 3br 2ba

1044 Edgemont | 2br 2ba

NEW - $399,000

NEW - $419,000

AVAILABLE - $789,000 Charming and beautiful 3br 2ba 1,468 ESF St. Augustine area Spanish home on one of the quietest streets in North Park! Inset ceiling, hardwood floors, fireplace, dual-paned windows, art deco hall bath. Remodeled kitchen and large breakfast room. Forced air heat and AC. New landscaping, lovely flagstone patio and arbor covered patio.

4490 47th | 3br 1ba

4351 E Overlook | 3br 2ba

4850 E Alder | 3br 2ba


July 2013 | | 3

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Ask Dr. Z (Editor’s Note: South Park’s Dr. Tara Zandvliet -Dr. Z — answers common — and not so common — health questions for our readers.) Q. What is the most common blood type? Red blood cells have proteins on them that make them unique to each individual person. The most common and important proteins belong to the ABO group, and the next is the Rh group. The A and B proteins are equal in strength, and the O means that neither protein exists on the red blood cell. You inherit one protein from each parent. So you could have AA, BB, AO, BO, AB or OO. The O is absence of a protein, so it is “silent” unless you have OO. So we end up with four blood types : A, B, AB and O. Of the proteins, O is most common, followed by A, and lastly by B. The Rh is another protein, and you get one from each parent also. Positive means you have the protein, even if only one copy, and negative means you don’t have any copies. Positive is way more common around the world and in the U.S. So the most common blood type, then, is O positive, with 38 percent of the U.S. population having this. Around the world, it is also the most common, reaching almost 100 percent in Central and Latin America. AB negative is the rarest blood type around the world, and less than 1 percent in the US. These blood types vary depending on geographic location and race. To find out more, go to Q. Why does popcorn stick to your tongue? Corn kernels have a large amount of protein and starch. Starch naturally has an affinity for water. When a corn kernel pops, it lets out a great deal of stored water as steam, leaving the starch in the popcorn very dry. This starch then will readily absorb moisture, including that on your tongue, or on a wet table or finger. Then it sticks! Interestingly, if you leave popcorn out for a while, it loses the ability to stick to all things wet because it absorbs water from the air. For an experiment, pop the corn in a covered pan, where the steam can’t escape, and let it sit awhile — it will be spongy and won’t stick to your tongue because it will have reabsorbed the water from the pan! Q. How do we grow taller? You grow taller when the individual bones in your body grow longer. They add new bone onto the ends of the bones, at growth plates that are made of cartilage. In the growth plate, the cartilage cells are arranged in stacks in the direction of growth. The cells first divide rapidly and then get much bigger, expanding up to 15 times their original volume. As the cells multiply and enlarge, the cartilage gets thicker, and the bone gets longer. Next, the cartilage begins to mineralize, and the cartilage cells die and leave holes that get invaded by bone cells. Finally, the bone cells entirely replace the cartilage with bone. This happens over and over in childhood, and occurs very rapidly in adolescence, until finally the cartilage no longer elongates, and the growth plate completely mineralizes. At that point, you have reached your full height. Dr. Tara Zandvliet welcomes your questions. Send them to She practices at 2991 Kalmia St. Phone: (619) 929-0032.

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room still has its scalloped-shaped band shell and after a $6 million renovation and restoration, the hotel really shines as it did when the Hollywood stars would stay for a weekend getaway. The ensemble celebrates over 25 years of performing and is a program of the LGBT Center and acts as a musical ambassador to the community. For this concert the band welcomes back local jazz vocalist Andrea Sperling, who will perform two songs including a special Pride piece. Concert time is 7 p.m. with hors d’oeuvres starting at 6:30 p.m. and no-host bar throughout the night. Tickets are $15 in advance, available at The Windsmith on Granada Avenue, and $20 at the door. For more info go to City Deli Getting New Owners and New Name City Delicatessen — or City Deli as patrons call it — is getting new owners and a new name. And a new interior. The prospective new owners are Tom

Brown, Frank Lechner and Mike Phillips, who will rename the popular eatery Harvey Milk’s American Diner. Michael Wright opened the restaurant with partner Alan Bilmes in 1984. The owners plan to close the place to do some interior renovations and open the place by August or September. The owners apparently have the support of the Harvey Milk Foundation, named after the late San Francisco supervisor who was assassinated in 1978 along with Mayor George Moscone. According to U-T San Diego, the prospective owners have worked out a licensing agreement with the foundation that requires them to pay a quarterly fee tied to a percentage of the gross sales. The restaurant’s 24 employees have been told they will be kept while the restaurant stays as City Deli and will be

considered for hiring under the new Diego. In 1991 he formed Bast/Wright Interiors with Jan Bast, FASID, a noted ownership. interior designer and design educator. Owner of Hillcrest Interior Design The seven-member firm, which specializes in high-end residential interiors, has Firm Honored Nationally Robert Wright, president of won numerous major design awards. Bast/Wright Interiors Inc. of Hillcrest, has been honored as 2013 Designer of Gloria Donates Funds for Neil Good Distinction by the American Society of Day Center San Diego City Council President Interior Designers (ASID). the honor recognizes an ASID professional member who has created an extraordinary body of work, exhibited a solid commitment to social concerns, and significantly advanced the profession. Wright, who has served as the national president of ASID and as president of the San Diego chapter, is the first designer from San Diego County to receive the award. He Neil Good Center after improvements. was honored as an ASID fellow in 2004. “Robert has been an inspiration to the Todd Gloria has contributed $13,549 to entire design community and this award upgrade the Neil Good Day Center. The is richly deserved,” said Robin Carrier, upgrades consisted of installation of president of the San Diego chapter of synthetic landscape grass and clean up ASID. “Robert is a brilliant designer who of the entire outdoor space. “The Neil generously shares his creative vision and Good Day Center was in need of physpassion for design with clients, students, ical improvements to support its misand the less fortunate. His work demon- sion of providing a safe place for our strates the power of design to change homeless neighbors to spend the day lives.” Wright has been a professional interior designer for more than 30 years, off the streets, shower, do laundry, and first in Texas and, since 1986, in San obtain necessary services,” said Gloria.

“This center is a critical piece of our system to solve homelessness, and I’m proud of the contribution I was able to make through savings in my office budget.” The center, located on 17th Street east of Downtown, is operated by the Alpha Project and provides case management, medical and counseling services, legal assistance, veterans services, laundry, showers, free storage, a computer lab and other supportive assistance to the homeless. Supercuts Store Celebrating 30 Years The Supercuts shop at 3024 El Cajon Blvd. is celebrating 30 years in business. The salon is locally owned and operated by Supercuts franchisee Susie Gonaver. The salon has been a part of the business community since opening in 1983, and prides itself in hiring local staff and stylists. The salon is one of more than 2,200 Supercuts in the country. In San Diego, services include adult and children/senior haircuts, as well as styling, hair coloring and facial waxing. The shop is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The phone: (619) 280-1133.

The Caregivers’ Journey Sibling harmony imperative My mom used to complain how difficult it was to make friends at her retirement home. Then one day, she stepped into the elevator and said hello to someBY MARSHA KAY SEFF one she had unsuccessfully been trying to befriend. “I haven’t seen you in a while,” Mom told her. “It looks like you’ve put on some weight.” The woman glared at her and left the elevator without even saying good-bye. “See what I mean?” Mom said to me. I suggested, between giggles, that next time, she tell the woman how great she looked. Recently, a student in one of my writing classes at a senior center also mentioned the difficulty of making friends. He complained that not a single person had invited him to do something in the two years he’d been at the center. I asked how many people he had invited to coffee or anything else. “None,” he answered, just beginning to understand. Close relationships are vital to our physical, mental and emotional health. According to the Mayo Clinic, friends “prevent loneliness, increase your sense of belonging and purpose, boost your happiness, reduce

stress, improve your self-worth, help you cope with traumas….” Friends provide us with companionship, conversation and caring. They give us a reason to do things we might otherwise determine isn’t worth the trouble. Unfortunately, chances are that many of your parents’ long-time friends have moved or died or simply lost touch. And it’s definitely tough making new friends in later life. Let’s face it: Skills can get rusty after you’ve counted on the same people for decades and haven’t had to venture out to create new relationships. If your parents sit at home watching TV, it’s time you stepped up and encouraged them to take action and help them plan how. The first step is connecting with old friends. My sister and I went through Mom’s address book and turned to the Internet to track down some of them. She had a ball talking to the son of her once-best friend, although she never got a call back from her friend. Oh well, at least we tried. To make new friends, your folks need to overcome the idea that everyone else their age already has enough friends. Nobody has enough good friends. Your parents need to go somewhere they can meet people: a senior center, activities in their retirement facility, lectures, concerts and adult-education classes. If they’re up to it, getting a part-time or volunteer job

can provide a great opportunity to meet others. Even taking the dog for a walk or the grandchildren to the park will put them in contact with others. Sure, there are junior-high-type clicks in clubs, retirement homes and senior centers, even at the ripe old age of 80 and 90. Your parents need to learn to ignore them and graciously ask if they can join a group. If the group answers negatively, your parents need to learn to move on; they don’t need those people anyway. Your folks need to learn not to wait for someone to make the first move. Waiting never got anyone anywhere. Again, they need to change direction if that person isn’t interested. Not everyone is willing to take a chance on a new relationship. Their loss! But if someone invites your parents to do something, they need to say “yes,” even if they’re not particularly interested in that person or activity. Actually, they might surprise themselves and end up having fun. They might even meet other interesting people at the activity. Even if it’s a bust, it’s only a few hours out of their life and worth the gamble. Once they meet people, they need to be prepared with a topic of conversation: “Where did you meet your spouse? What’s the best trip you even took? What do you think of the way kids dress today?” Remind your folks that it’s important not to talk exclusively about themselves.

Nobody wants to hear someone else’s whole life story or repeated stories of how great the grandchildren are. t’s also important to be upbeat; nobody wants to listen to complaints. Like my mother never seemed to learn, it’s important what you say. A friend might be someone who knows your faults and still loves you, but you have to cultivate the friendship first. Saying the wrong thing — nobody wants their weight gain pointed out — could cost them a potential friend. Remind your folks to listen with compassion. Most people enjoy an attentive audience. Offering to help a new acquaintance who is sick is a great way to spark a friendship. Just a simple phone call to check on them will endear your folks to someone

they might barely know. Your parents also need to understand that building a strong friendship requires time, effort and patience. They can’t just extend themselves once and expect the relationship to bloom. If you can help your parents make just one or two good friends, you will have improved their lives — and your own as well. Sponsored by Right at Home, In-Home Care & Assistance,, (858) 277-5900, Contact Marsha Kay Seff at

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neighborhood’s property and business improvement district, or PBID. The partnership calls the district its “Clean & Safe” program. It charges property owners and businesses a fee to pay for services like tree trimming, sidewalk cleaning and graffiti removal within its boundaries. The program is approved by the city, which then contracts its management to the Downtown San Diego Partnership. In 2009, the city overcharged certain property owners on their property tax bill. The city has since reimbursed all the residents they determined were overcharged. The new and improved partnership will continue taking care of those tasks, but a consultant from Denver helped it build a new organizational blueprint that’ll bring on new responsibilities including, perhaps, managing new public transportation. The organization’s leader is a familiar power in the Downtown sphere. Almost three years ago, a Voice of San Diego story referred to Michell as “the most powerful person in San Diego you know nothing about.” She served as chief of staff for both Mayor Jerry Sanders and Mayor Susan Golding. She managed the Republican National Convention, the Super Bowl and the campaign for Petco Park. When she took over the partnership, Michell said, she recognized the shrinking capacity of government at all levels meant her organization was no longer suited for Downtown’s long-term needs. “I was with (Golding) for ’93 to ’97, and then with (Sanders) in ’05 and ’06, and the contrast was stark,” she said. “I could see what government was unable to provide given how resources were so diminished. So I knew the old model didn’t match up well for the next 20 to 30 years.” Michell answers to the partnership’s board of directors, composed mostly of high-profile business leaders from companies like Bridgepoint Education, the Irvine Company, Cox Communications and WalMart. In May of 2011, the board took a retreat to sketch out a new role for the present market. By the end of that year, the train of governmentfunded neighborhood reinvention in California hit a wall, when the state Supreme Court upheld the governor’s decision to end the redevelopment program. So the partnership hired Brad Segal, president of Denver’s Progressive Urban Management Associates, to put together a program that would allow it to carry the mantle of urban renewal. “Out of every crisis comes the need to reinvent and do things differently,” Segal said. “The San Diego Downtown Partnership is ahead of the game and what we’re doing could certainly set the path for the rest of the state, for how to operate in a post-redevelopment world.” A New Model The new set-up would include a single nonprofit holding company that would centralize the organization’s administration and leadership. Its tasks would then be conducted by six affiliate entities, each with its own board of directors and budget. Then two members of each individual board would serve on the overall board. The Downtown San Diego Partnership wants to retain control of the entire operation, while extending itself into different roles with a revenue stream and legal mechanism attached to each one

For instance, the membership-based advocacy and development organization that exists today will be one of these independent entities. It’ll operate as a 501(c)6 organization with its own board of directors. And the clean and safe program will be another independent operation, set up as an assessment district with money coming in through fees and going out through services, just as in other neighborhoods throughout the city. The partnership has also set-up the Downtown San Diego Partnership Homeless Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization that administers homelessness services in the Downtown area. Private donations, including red meters collecting change for homeless residents installed throughout Downtown, feed the organization’s budget. It spends the money on programs like “Movin’ Home,” which among other things provides residents who just located housing with basic utilities like dishes, linens and pots, and “Work Your Way Home,” which last year helped 37 residents return to their original homes in 20 different states. In maybe the most expansive increase in the partnership’s scope, the reorganization would, by September of 2015, set up a special authority for transportation and mobility in the Downtown area. It wants to launch a Downtown-only bus service, or a circulator, similar those popping up in other cities. “The Downtown circulator will be one of the biggest game changers in Downtown,” Michell said. “We have a geographically large Downtown that makes it hard to get around. It’ll have a spur going up to Balboa Park. And we needed a solution to the perception that there’s a parking problem.” Final decisions will need to wait on the outcome of two project studies, but Michell suspects the partnership will outsource maintenance and operation of the bus to the Metropolitan Transit System while it focuses on securing a long-term revenue stream to fund it. The new organization has also formed a 501(c)3 dedicated to parks and outdoor space management and development. It’s still working to identify ongoing funding streams, beyond basic fundraising. Michell said she imagines each community having the ability to schedule events in the parks closest to it. The reorganization also calls for a nonprofit dedicated entirely to pursuing development projects. It would do some of the things already being done by Civic San Diego, like pursuing federal tax credits to help build local projects. Michell said the partnership will eventually form that entity, but doesn’t expect to do anything with it in the foreseeable future, because that task can be better handled by Civic San Diego, the organization formed when the city’s former redevelopment agencies were ended by the statewide end of the program. Both Michell and Jeff Graham, president of Civic San Diego, said the organizations complement each other in a post-redevelopment world. “It’s now incumbent on the private sector, through groups like the Downtown Partnership, to create the funding sources to implement things like an arts and culture district, a business retention program. Government isn’t always best at these things.” One way the organizations would work together, he said, is for Civic San Diego to design and build parks, which would be programmed, managed and maintained through the Downtown San Diego Partnership. “Civic San Diego is policy, process and infrastructure,” Segal said. “Clearly, our focus is on a private inspired, public-private partnerships. It’s a springboard for the city.”

“We’re not trying to supplant government, because we never could and we don’t want to. But I also don’t want us walking out of a board meeting and complaining about things that we don’t like or aren’t happening but then nothing gets done because we didn’t do anything.” Correction: An earlier version of this story said San Diego had yet to reimburse Downtown residents who were overcharged on their tax bills for the improvement district. Residents scheduled for reimbursements have received the full amount the city plans to give them. Andrew Keatts is a reporter for Voice of San Diego.

The Leadership Team Serving San Diego’s Premier Bungalow Communities Chairman/CEO Bob Page Publisher Rebeca Page Editor Manny Cruz Art Director Chris Baker ------------------------------

Kris Michell, president/CEO

Writers/Columnists Todd Gloria Ann Jarmusch Jennifer Kester Donna Marganella Bart Mendoza Katelyn O’Riordan Sandy Pasqua David Raines Delle Willett

Photography Manny Cruz Sande Lollis Letters/Opinion Pieces North Park News encourage letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please address correspondence to or mail to Manny Cruz. Please include a phone number, address and name for verification purposes; no anonymous letters will be printed. We reserve the right to edit letters and editorials for brevity and accuracy.

Janelle Riella, executive vice president

Story ideas/Press Releases Do you have an idea for an article you would like to see covered in this newspaper? We welcome your ideas, calendar item listings and press releases. For breaking news, please call us at (619) 287-1865. For all other news items, please email

ADDRESS PO Box 3679, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067 PHONE (858) 461-4484 Ryan Loofbourrow, executive director, Clean & Safe program

A Privatized Local Government It’s a difficult time for a Downtown organization that’s mostly known for its advocacy for Downtown businesses to begin taking over roles traditionally handled by public agencies. Mayor Bob Filner ran his campaign as a chance to recapture the city from Downtown insiders. He was talking about organizations like the partnership, and figures like Michell. But Michell said she isn’t concerned with the perception that the group is overstepping its bounds. John Hanley, director of finance

North Park News distributes copies monthly to residents and businesses of North Park, South Park, Golden Hill and Normal Heights. The entire contents of North Park News is copyrighted, 2012, by REP Publishing, Inc. Reproduction in whole or part is prohibited without prior written consent. All rights reserved.

July 2013 | | 7

Neighborhood News Neighbors in North Park are strong advocates for your community. I appreciate the ongoing communication and collaboration many of you have with my office that help me to focus my efforts to get results for our neighborhood. This was demonstrated most recently through my contribution of BY COUNCIL PRESIDENT TODD GLORIA funds to two local projects and through the passage of two items by the City Council. The North Park library, and all other branches in San Diego, will soon be open four additional hours per week, thanks to amendments the City Council made to the budget. We have made steady progress restoring this core service, and I am proud we agreed that libraries are a true core service. When you visit the North Park library the next time, you may notice the parking lot there now resembles the sexy streets we all love. It has been repaired and resurfaced, using an allocation of Community Projects, Programs and Services (CPPS)

Gloria contributed $1,800 to the North Park Citizens Patrol.

funds, which are generated through savings from my office budget. I also recently contributed $1,800 of CPPS funds to the North Park Citizens Patrol to support its community policing efforts and empower the neighborhood to prevent crime. Your voice continues to have a positive impact at City Hall, and the recently approved city budget reflects the priorities you set for me. In addition to the restored library hours, I’m particularly glad that my council colleagues agreed to fund an assessment of sidewalk conditions and needs throughout the city. We’ve made great headway since 2008 with increased investment in our public infrastructure. Our attention must turn to our sidewalks and the policies that currently govern their maintenance. I look forward to the results of the assessment so we can include the greatest needs in our long term infrastructure financing discussions. I thank each of you who have participated in community meetings, communicated with me and my staff, and worked on behalf of the neighborhood. Together, even more progress is possible. Councilman Gloria can be reached at; (619) 236-6633; 202 C Street, MS 10A, San Diego, CA 92101; and on Facebook and Twitter. Visit his website at The North Park Library will soon be open four additional hours a week.

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TATTOO STUDIOS SHOWCASE ART Business owners have had to combat misconceptions of their trade BY BONNIE NICHOLLS

If your idea of a tattoo studio includes a bunch of noisy bikers hanging outside and smoking, you haven’t been to South Park. Instead, most of the studios that have opened for business in the last three years look more like art galleries, with a twist. The paintings and drawings, many by the tattoo artists themselves, can vary from the macabre to the abstract, while curiosities — such as Buddha sculptures, tear vials, skulls and stuffed animals (no, we’re not talking about teddy bears) — decorate the shelves. And it’s no wonder. Each business owner is an artist. Ryan of The Vishuddha, who goes by his last name only, studied art at UC San Diego and even ran art therapy groups as a behavioral counselor. UC San Diego alumna Diana DeAugustine of Diego Tattoo went on to get a Master of Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts. Longtime artist Turk, who also goes by his last name, displays his work and that of other artists in the large gallery space of Left Hand Black, the studio he runs with his wife, Crystal. The surge in South Park tattoo studios started in 2010 when The Vishuddha ( moved in to what was once the Burlingame Garage at 2226 Fern St. Full Circle Tattoo, near Vagabond Kitchen, opened next, followed in 2012 by Left Hand Black (, near Fern and Grape, and Diego Tattoo (, close to Fern and Cedar. This growing number of businesses

dedicated to body art reflects the rise in Americans who have tattoos. A 2013 poll by Harris Interactive found one in five U.S. adults (21 percent) has a tattoo, up from 14 percent reported in 2008. As the trailblazer, Ryan chose South Park for two reasons — nobody else had opened a tattoo business in the area, and the neighborhood appealed to him. “It has a small-town feel in a big city,” he said. South Park was also DeAugustine’s first choice when she decided to open her own studio after working at Buju Tattoo in Mission Hills. “I liked all the unique storefronts,” she said. And in dog-friendly South Park, you’ll be pleased to know that DeAugustine named her business after her Chihuahua. Turk said he and his wife are “super stoked” to be in South Park. “The development of this area really fits where our heart is. It’s the kind of neighborhood we want to be in.” The two of them own a home five blocks away from the studio and are expecting their first child. These studios are a far cry from a “street shop,” according to Turk, where nothing but stencils (known as tattoo flash) cover the walls and customers can “pick it and stick it.” Instead, South Park’s tattoo artists hold consultations with their clients to discuss the work in detail. “A tattoo is a lifelong commitment,” Ryan said. “You don’t want to trust that to anyone.” Still, these business owners have had to combat misconceptions of their trade. To appeal to her landlord, DeAugustine

put a whole packet together that included her resume, her mission statement and her approach as an artist. She assured him that “it’s not going to be that noisy tattoo shop with shirtless guys smoking in the front.” Turk had to approach his landlord twice, a few years apart, to seal the deal. The first time the landlord said, “Tattoos? I don’t think so.” So Turk opened a studio in Escondido, but two negatives prompted him to find a new space: tattoo studios in that area had a “gangster feel” and the city lacked an art scene. The next time he approached Left Hand Black on Fern Street features a dramatic art gallery along with the tattoo studio. (Photo by Bonnie Nicholls). his South Park landlord, he got a lease. There’s a “stigma that it’s all bikers or gangster guys,” he said. “Those guys still exist, but the cream is rising to the top.” Many of the business owners attract clientele based on word-of-mouth and referrals. “You do a decent job and that’s your advertisement,” Ryan said. But marketing and promotion don’t hurt. Both Turk and Diana hold periodic art shows at their studios, not only to celebrate art, but to get potential customers in the door. You’d think that four tattoo studios in South Park would breed competition. But that’s not the case here. Each studio has its own vibe; the artists at Diego Tattoo, for example, are all women. Also, each artist has his or her own style. They even refer customers to each other. “I think it’s really cool,” Ryan said, adding that his fellow tattoo artists are “a valuable resource that’s really close by.”

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Turk and Crystal operate Left Hand Black, a gallery and studio, near the intersection of Fern and Grape.

July 2013 | | 9

Summer of Love Walkabout Returns July 20 — 6 to 10 p.m. Seems that love beads and tie-dye are popular with the South Park customers. Last year’s “Summer of Love” walkabout theme met with such an enthusiastic reception that the merchants are reprising it on July 20. The Summer of Love 2013 Walkabout is set for 6 to 10 p.m. that evening. As always, a free trolley will operate from Juniper to Beech St., providing a convenient transportation option. Urban Safaris offers a free walking tour of the historic neighborhood and its retail communities, starting at 6:30pm from the Info Table near The Grove on Juniper St. For those new to these quarterly events, South Park’s popular Walkabout evenings are an opportunity to visit the

Diana DeAugustine’s Diego Tattoo Gallery is the newest in South Park, located in a former flower shop near the corner of Fern and Cedar.

Ryan of The Visshuddha opened his tattoo studio in the restored Burlingame Garage building between 30th and Fern three years ago.

neighborhood’s shops and eateries, which stay open late and offer refreshments and specials. A complete guide to what is offered where is published by the South Park Business Group on Facebook (, on their website (, and is available at the Info Table and on the Trolley the night of the event. Later this year, the SPBG will host the ArtOberfest Walkabout (on Saturday, Oct. 5), and the Holiday Walkabout (on Saturday, Dec. 7). Also in the planning stages is a neighborhood tree-lighting ceremony and party on Sunday, December 1st. More information will be available in coming months.

10 | | July 2013

Bethel Nathan


“That’s one of the best compliments I can get.” And as much as she enjoys being part of the ceremonies, you won’t see her around when they are over. “I need to go home to nurture my own marriage!” Bethel officiated at her first wedding seven years ago, and since starting fulltime four years ago, she has officiated at

352 weddings. Working alone, she does 100 to 120 a year and is already booked solid for the rest of 2013. She also has booked 21 ceremonies for 2014 and one for 2015. Anyone hoping to schedule her needs to contact her early; on average her couples book 10 months out. Her current fee is $595. Bethel has turned down 10 requests, not the right fit for each other. She only celebrates couples she adores. “If I don’t adore them I can’t marry them.”

Sharon and Will DeBeauchamp share smiles with Bethel Nathan at their wedding. (Photo by La Vida Creations Photography)

July 2013 | | 11

Bethel Nathan weds Lauren and Todd Manlove. (Photo by Laura Christin Photography)

She has also done “reverse weddings” or a second wedding: after a wedding that makes the mothers happy, the couples will do a ceremony with her that makes them happy. Couples married by Bethel range in age from 20/21 (a military couple) to late 60s, (second marriages). Typical couples are in their late 20s to mid 40s, and she has lots of late 40s and 50s. 25 percent are from out of town. 5 percent are gay. “Their most common denominator is that they all have a feeling of gratitude that they have each other.” Bethel does as many commitment ceremonies for gay couples as possible. “The day it’s all legal again I will spend all day at the county offices signing licenses. That will be one of the happiest days of my life—being able to sign licenses for couples I couldn’t do so before.” No charge!

She expects to have an increase of about 20 percent same-sex weddings in the future when marriage equality is back in California. Her favorite moment is seeing the couples connect during the ceremony, hearing the words that they created together, remembering why they are getting married. “Seeing a natural smile, a smile that goes to their eyes. All the focus is on each other. They aren’t aware of who is around them.” About 10 percent of Bethel’s ceremonies are elopements. They still plan ahead and do their homework; they just have very few or no one else there except Bethel and a photographer. She charges $325 for these types of ceremonies. She will also occasionally do a baby blessing or a celebration of life, but those are usually for her wedding customers, when their families grow, or they lose a

April and Pat are wed in a picturesque setting with Bethel Nathan. (Photo by Chana and Don)

family member. Bethel has been an active member of the San Diego Women’s Foundation for 10 years, on the board for eight of those, working on many of the committees. She is also a past member of the board of directors of the San Diego affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and still involved with them. “When people get involved in philanthropy there are three ways they can do it: give money, give time or give talent,” she says. Bethel has chosen to use her excellent voice and speaking skills to be a spokesperson for these philanthropies, in addition to money and time. Looking ahead, Bethel and husband Jason are starting a new business that he will eventually run: They are writing and publishing “Asked to Officiate,” a comprehensive workbook on how to do ceremonies like she does, with the idea that a lot of couples are asking friends or family members to officiate their wedding and they don’t have a clue what to do. “I want people to have better weddings everywhere, and a better experience for all involved.” She is also seriously playing with

“Voiceovers by Bethel,” selling her excellent speaking voice to all types of media that are looking for the perfect pitch. “For me it’s about finding what makes you happy,” says Bethel. “You can’t be truly great at something unless you love it; find the intersection between where your talent is and where your passion is.” For her it’s either running a philanthropy or marrying people. Right now it’s marrying people and volunteering for nonprofits. “It’s a huge honor and a lot of fun to be doing both.” Born in Philadelphia in 1970 and raised in Cape Cod, Mass., until she was 13, Bethel came to San Diego in 1983, lived in La Mesa and went to Helix High. Then she was off to UC Berkeley for a degree in political science and Asian studies (emphasis on Japan), and on to Thunderbird College where she got her MBA in international finance and Japanese. She worked on Wall Street for nine years in Tokyo, New York and London, and then walked away at age 33, back to San Diego, realizing she “had no life.” She went to work for six years for her parents who own “Initial Impression,” a promo-

tional products and engraving company. She still helps on occasion. She and Jason, her husband of 6 and a half years, live in North Park after moving from Downtown. They met through a mutual friend. They don’t have children by choice. But “I love being an aunt and I love giving them back,” says Bethel. Wanting to like what she sees in the couples’ wedding photos, she has lost 83 pounds in the last 20 months and has 17 pounds more to go, which may be gone by the time this article is printed. (Contact information: Delle Willett has 30 years’ experience in marketing and public relations: 15 years as the co-owner of O’Shaughnessy and Willett Marketing Communications (San Diego) and 15 as Director of Marketing and Public Relations for the Missouri Botanical Garden and the San Diego Natural History Museum—two of the three oldest scientific/educational institutions west of the Mississippi.

She can’t leave home without her Nikon camera, running shoes, sunglasses, ChapStick, Tums and cell phone.

12 | | July 2013


1907 Spring House

Spreckles Warehouse

In a call for more responsible historic preservation action, the Save Our Heritage Organisation has announced its 2013 Most Endangered List of Historic Resources. “Historic buildings, landscapes and sites contribute to a distinct sense of place and provide a priceless record of our shared heritage,” says SOHO in its announcement. “Historic places in our cities, the backcountry, and the desert or across the border, are threatened each year, or worse, lost forever. SOHO has significantly reduced the number of major losses in our region through preemptive negotiations, advocacy, public awareness and education. The Most Endangered List, now in its 26th year, has proven to be a valuable tool in encouraging urgently needed preservation action.” Twelve of the 13 items on the Most Endangered List are buildings and sites that embody the diversity and richness of San Diego County history. The 13th item: the municipal trend toward overturning historic designations for the owner’s convenience could easily become a preservation nightmare, both legally and culturally. As a society, we need to be able to see, smell, and touch significant historic sites, buildings, and landscapes that reflect our common heritage, intellectual development and sense of humanity.

sidered La Mesa’s founder. Later, D. C. Collier, a San Diego civic leader and pioneering developer of communities such as La Mesa, bought the land with the springs and built the Spring House as a bottling plant. That venture didn’t materialize and Collier gave the building and some of the land to the people of La Mesa. It soon became known as Collier Park, the city’s first public park. Two decades ago, the city closed and boarded up the Spring House. Now city planners are preparing to revamp Collier Park and they want to replace the Spring House with a new building for interpretive Newly listed sites 1. SOHO has identified a disturbing trend that puts all our historic exhibits. But a restored or renovated Spring House would make a fine resources at risk. Historic designations are being overturned by exhibit space with the priceless advantage that La Mesa’s history is unlawful appeals to city councils and city officials. Owners of historic part of the package. sites are hiring lawyers to argue, falsely, that their properties do not 3. A century ago in San Diego, the super wealthy John D. Spreckmerit landmark status and should be removed from the historic register. This has happened most egregiously recently in Coronado els was a leader in regional development and a civic booster extraorwith one major home being demolished and another of that city’s dinaire. In part, we remember his impact through cultural landmarks grandest Spanish Revival masterworks being cleared for demoli- that remain in constant use, such as the Spreckels Theatre and tion or remodeling, and in San Diego false testimony and lobbying Spreckels Organ Pavilion. These buildings represent Spreckels’ high turned the City Council to rule against their own legal best interest. aspirations for advancing culture in San Diego. By contrast, the utilWhile these reversals placate property owners, they come from itarian, modern Spreckels Warehouse, built in 1924 on J Street by the unqualified and sometimes irresponsible administrators or City Spreckels Brothers Commercial Company, represents the work-a-day Councils. This trend reflects decision makers’ blatant disregard, remnants of a once busy warehouse district. So that we have a tangible record and understanding of historic sheer ignorance or willful misunderstanding of the arduous desigdowntown development, SOHO negotiated fiercely to save warenation process and preservation law. houses along J Street and nearby, for restoration and reuse as shops, 2. La Mesa city plans call for the senseless demolition of the 1907 restaurants and sports bars surrounding the new downtown ballSpring House, which is part of Collier Park and Landmark Number park. Since then, J Street has been recharged with new energy and 3 on La Mesa’s historic register. It’s also one of the few buildings in pedestrian traffic; the urban texture is richer for having these buildthis city deemed eligible for the California and National Registers. ings filling several blocks. The springs that bubble up here would have been known to the Elsewhere downtown we’ve lost a host of simple, vernacular Kumeyaay, and in 1869, attracted rancher Robert Allison, who is con- industrial buildings, along with the Fifth Avenue wharf and rail

Newly listed sites for 2013: • Overturning Historic Designations Trend • 1907 Collier Park Spring House • 1924 Spreckels Warehouse • 1897 St. Luke’s Chapel • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Sites remaining from previous years: • 1927 California Theatre • 1960s Caliente Racetrack Advertising Mural


DeBello said. He said San Diego Alive! will focus on the city’s outdoor lifestyle. The Spreckels Organ Pavilion will be transformed into the Centennial Stage, a setting for live performances by entertainers, he said. “It all looks very, very exciting,” committee member Marti Emerald said. The presentation represents something of an about-face by organizers, who have dumped a brand name of Edge 2015 that numerous city leaders, including Mayor Bob Filner and Councilman David Alvarez, the committee chairman, didn’t like. Tourism officials are hoping for an influx of U.S. and international travelers to celebrate the 100 years since the Panama-California Exhibition in 1915.

Luke’s Chapel

• 1911 Star Builders Supply Company Building • 22,000-acre Rancho Guejito • 1840s Marrón Adobe • 1939 La Jolla Post Office Building • 1910 Teachers Training Annex #1 • 1887 Villa Montezuma • 1894 Red Roost and Red Rest Bungalow

DeBello said organizers of the centennial would begin to approach sponsors after Labor Day. The marketing effort over the next year will also include a website and heavy use of social media. Like the 1915 exposition, which opened San Diego to the world, the centennial two years from now could be “a game-changer” for the city, DeBello said. He said the event will be “unprecedented in size, scope and duration,” and offer 700 event opportunities to show off the “intellectual capital and cultural resources” of the city. DeBello said Mexico and Panama have been invited to participate, and the Smithsonian Institution — which operates the national museums in Washington, D.C. — has expressed interest in bringing exhibits to San Diego. The museums and other institutions in Balboa Park are setting up their own

programming for 2015, he said. “We are at the point where we’re discussing final plans because 2015 is right around the corner,” said Nicki Clay, member of the Balboa Park Celebration Committee. “This is a signature event. It’s going to be a year-long premier destination event.” Adam Burke is an event producer working with Autonomy, the company hired to put on the year-long celebration. “We’re throwing a very broad net that will really look to incorporate the best of San Diego,” said Burke. It’s a world-class event that comes with a world-class price tag, but exact figures have yet to be revealed. Majority of the funding will come from the Tourism Marketing District. The Centennial Celebration festivities are estimated to bring an additional 400,000 room reservations to San

Diego-area hotels bringing in between $3 million to $6 million in revenue to the city. The TMD has agreed to allocate 10 percent of the available funds spent each year on promoting the year-long celebration. Additional funds will come from the city of San Diego, donations and local sponsors. “We’re locking in plans. We’re bringing in partners from the local commu-

nity and we’re moving very fast,” said Burke. The hope is the Centennial Celebration will draw tens of thousands of people from America’s Finest City and beyond. “We’re pretty confident people from the region, the rest of the country and also from the rest of the world will come, visit and see what happens – just like they did in 1915,” said Burke.

July 2013 | | 13

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

yards associated with the working port on San Diego Bay. These losses make it all the more imperative to recognize the historic socioeconomic and architectural significance of the Spreckels Warehouse, J Street’s western anchor. Its board-formed concrete walls support lightweight steel roof trusses, so there’s no need for interior columns. Its large, open interior makes the warehouse flexible for accommodating different uses, as it has done for more than 90 years. Yet this warehouse may be in danger of demolition due to economic pressure to demolish and build a residential tower on the site, pressure that’s compounded by the owner’s indifference, so far, to its modern design and pedigree. Its fate now lies with the city’s Historical Resources Board. We encourage the board to declare the Spreckels Warehouse a historic landmark and to steer its owner toward a buyer with preservation and adaptive reuse in mind.

resources, wildlife, and the public’s experience. A new wind farm of over 90 towers, with plans to add more, shares a five-mile boundary with AnzaBorrego Desert State Park, severely intruding on formerly pristine skies and heart-stopping vistas that sweep across desert and mountains. Like SDG&E’s controversial Sunrise Power Link towers, you can’t skirt the unsightly and noisy wind farms. Typically, the commercial owners install one hundred or

4. St. Luke’s Chapel, the oldest building in North Park, is also threatened. Historians maintain this small 1897 Mission Revival-style building was designed by the prominent San Diego Rancho Guejito architecture firm of Hebbard & Gill for All Saints Episcopal Church based on design hallmarks and the men’s church membership. All Saints moved the chapel from Hillcrest to North Park in 1924 to serve as a mission (or satellite) for its rapidly expanding congregation. During the 1950s, St. Luke’s Church was built next to the chapel, which now stands boarded up, deteriorating and dark. The Diocese, and not the local church, is responsible for the site and may be considering razing the chapel and a few other old buildings on their property to make way for likely use as a parking lot or other development. SOHO urges the Episcopal Diocese to take the boards off this chapel and restore it and make it a vital part of any new plans. 5. Once unthinkable in this desert preserve, ugly, massive and dangerous commercial wind farms are now encroaching on the rugged beauty, trails and wildlife habitats of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. This gift to the public from George Marston and his contemporaries has always been an alluring magnet for nature lovers, artists, scientists, campers, and explorers, and most importantly for those who seek respite from the city. But in recent years, the federal Bureau of Land Management has orders to generate clean energy on public land, regardless of any negative impact on irreplaceable natural and cultural

1927 California Theater

1911 Star Builders Supply Company Building

so, 450-foot steel towers with spinning blades, which have proven lethal to birds as large as eagles and threaten to harm people as well. While there may be proper places for these, it is not here in one of our most scenic and culturally important regions. This hazardous blight must be stopped. Wind farms are removable and that’s what the BLM should enforce.

Sites remaining from previous years

city of San Diego landmark. In 1996, the building’s owner, the county of San Diego, spent $1 million taxpayer dollars on a fine restoration of this dignified concrete building designed in the Edwardian Commercial style. It stands alone, one of the last sentinels of an early 20th-century warehouse and industrial district near San Diego Bay. But now county officials would rather have a parking lot instead of a landmark building. SOHO recently won a lawsuit against the county for attempted illegal demolition of the Star Builders warehouse, but the county has given no Also in Downtown is the 1911 Star guarantee they won’t try to get around Builders Supply Company Building, a 1927 California Theatre has suffered for far too long. Its demolition by neglect is a tactic that is only costing the developer owner when it could instead rival the Balboa Theater or serve a multitude of other purposes. San Diego’s premier movie palace, the California Theatre was heralded as the “Cathedral of the Motion Picture” when it opened in 1927. This grand Spanish Colonial Revival style building is listed on the local Register of Historical Resources.


14 | | July 2013

COMING IN AUGUST Women have practiced landscape architecture for over a century, since the founding of the profession in the U.S. in the 1890s. And we have some of the best in our own backyard. Vicki Estrada, Kathleen Garcia and Robin Shifflet have been designing some of the best landscapes in the San Diego area, including many features at Balboa Park. Read about them next month. Marrón Adobe

La Jolla Post Office


is listed on the National Register and stands out as a prominent, distinctive landmark. It’s the last remaining building from the 1897 San Diego State Normal School campus, the forerunner of San Diego State University. The San Diego Unified School District, which now owns the building, has willfully allowed this superb Italian Renaissance Revival-style beauty to deteriorate visibly for years, despite concerted community-based proposals for its preservation and adaptive reuse. For now, the building is being misused for records storage, when it could be a handsome neighborhood library, foreign language school, or art studios, or any number of other ideas that have been put forward.


the process to remove the building.

Near Escondido, the breathtakingly pristine, 22,000-acre Rancho Guejito is the last, most intact example in San Diego County of an original Mexican land grant, and it’s under constant threat of major development, as many as 10,000 new homes, if the owner gets their wish to develop the land. This vast ranch includes an early California adobe house in a setting little changed from when its sun-baked bricks first formed the walls, along with adobe ruins and numerous The 1887 Villa Montezuma is a high-profile example of the Native American heritage sites and other historic and natucity of San Diego’s continuing neglect of its historic resources. ral resources. City officials have ignored SOHO’s willingness to operate The oldest house in Carlsbad, the Marrón Adobe is also in this beloved Victorian and return it to active use for the comthe path of relentless development. Even though members of munity and visitors. One of the state’s finest ornate, Queen the Marrón family still own and live in the house and despite Anne-style homes, with its important lessons of the city’s serious objections voiced by Native Americans, environmen- history to tell, remains empty and vulnerable to weather and talists, wildlife experts and preservationists, the Corky vandalism. A house this intricate requires specific profesMcMillin Co. plans to build a massive housing tract on the sional oversight. Recently, funds were acquired to do some area’s last piece of unspoiled open land, which brushes up work, but SOHO has yet to see the plans, or know the scope against the historic site. McMillin cited the need for profit as of work. SOHO should be involved with this significant citytheir reason for building over 500 homes versus the commu- owned landmark as much as possible, as the region’s presernity’s consensus for 260 homes. If legal actions being taken vation organization who fortuitously count among their by the Preserve Calavera group are not successful, this unnec- board, staff, and membership, the city’s leading experts on essary project will decimate the natural and cultural landscape Victorian architecture, the city should be welcoming SOHO’s surrounding this important landmark and block historic participation. views of the Marrón property and forever irreparably impact the neighborhood. The La Jolla Post Office Building has been a focal point and neighborly crossroads for several generations living in the “village.” The attractive Spanish Colonial Revival building, built by the Federal Works Progress Administration during the Great Depression, also contains an art treasure in its lobby, a stunning mural of La Jolla Cove painted in 1939 by one of San Diego’s most accomplished, early 20th century women artists, Belle Baranceanu. The post office is now a potential casualty of U.S. Postal Service downsizing. So far, widespread community opposition has stalled the process of closing and selling the building, but its future remains precarious. In University Heights, the 1910 Teachers Training Annex #1

The last of the sites remaining on the 2013 Most Endangered List from previous years is also the focus of SOHO’s longest running battle. The 1894 Red Roost and Red Rest Bungalows, which stand on a hillside overlooking La Jolla Cove, are emblematic California-style redwood, single-wall construction cottages. They were built when La Jolla was just beginning to court tourists and was attracting art colonies. For more than a quarter of a century, SOHO has advocated for the preservation of these simple cottages, through restoration and adaptive reuse. SOHO also has repeatedly urged the city of San Diego to enforce its own preservation laws, which require maintenance of designated landmarks such as these. Still, the owners persist in letting the cottages deteriorate, cloaked in huge tarps covering their leaky roofs. Nothing seems to deter the owners from their shameful and illegal process of “demolition by neglect.”

1910 Teachers Training Annex #1

Marrón Adobe

1894 Red Roost

July 2013 | | 15

Rare Museum Collections Now Free to Access Online Commons visitors can get images related to art, history and science at once

From the Timkin Museum of Art: Peter Paul Rubens’ ‘Portraint of a Young Man in Armor.’

From the Mingei International Museum: Dale Chihuly, ‘Enlightenment.’

More than 20,000 rare and significant materials from Balboa Park museum collections are now freely available to the public to access anytime, anywhere via the Balboa Park Commons, a new online resource that was launched at Developed by the Balboa Park Online Collaborative (BPOC), the Commons offers unprecedented access to digitized photos and artifacts from Mingei International Museum, Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego Air & Space Museum, San Diego Museum of Man, San Diego Natural History Museum, The San Diego Museum of Art and Timken Museum of Art. From the Museum of “This is the first time you can look at Photographic Arts: portrait of the collections across the museums Victor Hugo. Etienne Carjat. and make relationships that have never been made before,” said Christina DePaolo, BPOC’s director of digital media. “The interdisciplinary aspect is what’s really exciting. Commons visitors can get images related to art, history, and science at once, which opens up new ways of learning about topics.” BPOC began the project in 2010 with support from the Legler Benbough Foundation and the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services. Having already digitized more than 100,000 museum objects, BPOC and partner museums aimed to expand public access by creating a web-based resource for students, teachers, scholars, and the general public to access. “Teachers told us they wanted to take images from the collections and use them in the classroom, tailored to what they’re teaching. We created a feature to allow teachers to select and download image files for use in the classroom however they wish,” DePaolo said. A Creative Commons Non-Commercial license applies to all of the collections included in the Commons. This means that the materials can be downloaded and used for non-commercial educational purposes such as teaching, scholarship, research, criticism, and news reporting. Joaquin Ortiz, interim director of education and public pro-

grams at the Museum of Photographic Arts, emphasized the importance of opening public access to the museum’s collections: “The Balboa Park Commons is a powerful tool that allows us to share the images from MOPA’s collection to a much greater audience of educators and enthusiasts. The Commons allows us to reach out to new people and get them interested in what we do,” said Ortiz, who also serves as a BPOC board member. During the next few months, the project team will refine the Commons using feedback received from users during this beta launch period. BPOC will also expand the Commons through partnerships with other San Diego cultural institutions. The next collection to be added will be an archive of historical Balboa Park images and documents from The Committee of One Hundred, an organization that works to preserve Balboa Park’s historic architecture, gardens, and public spaces. While many Balboa Park organizations have materials of national and international importance, the Commons emphasizes collections that have historical or cultural connections to the greater San Diego region. Key Features Encourage Exploration The Balboa Park Commons makes it fun for visitors to search and browse museum collections. Using the keyword search, visitors can find materials from multiple museums at one time. For example, a search for “horse” brings up 19th century photographs of horses from the Museum of Photographic Arts alongside digitized images of carousel horses from the Mingei International Museum. By browsing sets of images that the museums’ staff have created, Commons visitors can discover curated, thematic groups of images, e.g., “Asian Art.” Visitors can create and share their own sets. Sets of up to 12 images can be saved, shared via social media, and downloaded as PDF files or Powerpoint presentations. Through the Commons API (applications programming interface), web developers can create different ways to interact with the materials. BPOC is also exploring partnerships with large, national online library initiatives to give greater exposure to the museums’ collections.

16 | | July 2013

The Secret Art of Dr. Seuss Added to Ripley’s Exhibition Believe or not, Dr. Seuss (a.k.a. Theodor Geisel) began creating fanciful mixed-media sculptures, using real horns, antlers and beaks from deceased animals, before he ever wrote any of his best-selling children’s books. Examples of these are now on display inside the San Diego Air & Space Museum’s blockbuster exhibition “Ripley’s Believe It or Not.” Also joining Ripley’s this month are displays on Wadlow, the tallest man to ever live, and Lawn Chair Larry, who ascended 16,000 feet by attaching balloons to his lawn chair.

Balboa Park Conservancy and Balboa Park Central Talk Merger The Balboa Park Conservancy and Balboa Park Central, two nonprofit organizations working on behalf of the city-owned park, are working toward a merger sometime next year. The Conservancy, formed in 2010, is primarily responsible for raising funds for capital projects and park maintenance. Balboa Park Central provides services to visitors and park institutions and operates the visitors center in the park. “The ongoing working relationship between the Conservancy and Balboa Park Central revealed a natural alignment between our organizations in regards to caring about the whole of the Park and the quality of the visitor experience,” said Carol Chang, the Balboa Park Conservancy’s board president. “It became readily apparent that combining our organizations would not only greatly benefit one another, but the future of the Park as well.”

The Sensual Sculpture of Donal Hord San Diego History Center is the recipient of eight sculptures created by celebrated artist Donal Hord (1902-1966). The artwork is a donation from the estate of local art collectors, Richard Dyson—who passed away in January 2013—and his partner, Robert Roberson of La Mesa (1999). The two were early advocates of Donal Hord’s work and the collection represents some of the sculptor’s most acclaimed privately-held works which the History Center is displaying through Sept. 20. Donal Hord was considered one of the most preeminent American sculptors by many in the national and local art community during the early to mid-20th century. At the time Hord was the only local artist to become a full academician of the National Academy of Design and a Fellow of the

June Ceremony Commemorates Rose Garden Irrigation System Completion The Balboa Park Trust, a family of endowment funds managed by The San Diego Foundation, commemorated the completion of the irrigation system at the Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden at a June 19 event. The Lilyan B. Frank Memorial Rose Garden Endowment Fund provided more than $101,000 to preserve and protect the Rose Garden and Japanese Friendship Garden. The Balboa Park Trust, which has provided more than $1.7 million for the preservation, maintenance, and beautification of Balboa Park, was established 28 years ago with a donation from Florence Christman, who entrusted The San Diego Foundation to carry out her wishes. “Mrs. Christman’s service with the San Diego Historical Society inspired in her a great interest in Balboa Park,” said Bob Kelly, president and CEO of The San Diego Foundation. “Wanting to preserve the park’s beauty and splendor, she donated her house to the city, specifying that the proceeds go to a fund for the beautification of Balboa Park. That was the first step in what would become the Balboa Park Trust of The San Diego Foundation.” Donal Hood carving Angel of Peace.

San Diego’s Gay Men’s Chorus Rocks to Songs of the ’60s Performances July 27-28 at the Birch North Park Theatre Step back into the psychedelic ’60s with the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus as they present “Feelin’ Groovy— Songs of the ‘60s,” the greatest hits of that free-spirited yet socially charged decade. Tickets are now on sale at for the July 27 and 28 shows at the Birch North Park Theatre. “This concert is jam-packed with amazing ’60s music,” said Artistic Director Gary Holt. “We’ll be singing, dancing and yes —groovin’— to Motown soul, the California hippie scene, the British Invasion and everything in between.” Feelin’ Groovy showcases music that defined not just a generation, but represented a cosmic shift in American culture and civil rights. Songs like “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “The Sound of Silence,” “The Age of Aquarius” and “Let the Sunshine In” symbolize the combined influence of folk music, the California “flower power” scene and songs of political protest. Yet, the ’60s wasn’t all serious. The Feelin’ Groovy show promises the high-energy, upbeat music audiences have come to love like “Dancing in the Street,” “Twist and Shout,” “Spinning Wheel,” “Stop! In the Name of Love”

and “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.” Also featured will be an appearance by the ensemble group “The Mood Swings” with their precision harmonies, dancing and occasional frivolity as they present a lively look at “The ’60s on TV” including TV commercials and theme songs. Feelin’ Groovy is directed and choreographed by Joey Landwehr, the award-winning artistic director of San Diego’s J*Company Youth Theatre. He joins Holt for their eleventh collaborative production. The opening night show is Saturday, July 27 at 8 p.m. followed by two shows on Sunday, July 28 at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 to $40 and may be purchased at or by calling (877) 296-7664. A $5 discount is available for seniors, students, military and groups of 10 or more. The theater is located at 2891 University Ave. The San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus is one of the largest and oldest choruses of its type in the world, having entertained audiences for 28 years. Its 150 members embrace a mission of creating a positive musical experience through exciting performances.

National Sculpture Society. Hord preferred Direct Carving, a process which involves only the carver, the tools, and the medium and shuns the use of working from a drawing. The carver takes inspiration from the medium’s lines and angles, allowing the material to dictate the form and represents a return to the direct approach used in primitive art. Hord worked mainly with hard materials like jade, onyx, and granite in stone and rosewood, mahogany, and lignum vitae in woods. Hord’s public art can be seen today at Balboa Park’s House of Hospitality, in front of the entrance to the Prado restaurant, at the County Administration Building, the current San Diego County Library, San Diego State University, and in Seaport Village.

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July 2013 | | 19

By Bart Mendoza

A Rare Appearance by Ian McClagan Boisterous Fun With Ugly Boogie A lynch pin of ’60s and ’70s, British rock ‘n’ roll piano player, Ian McClagan, appears at AMSD Concerts on July 20, 7:30 p.m. A member of legendary 1960s UK mod band, The Small Faces of “Itchycoo Park,” he went on to later fame as a key part of the Faces and such classic rockers as “Stay With Me,” before joining up with the Rolling Stones. Currently a member of Billy Bragg’s band, he can also be heard through session work for everyone from Bruce Springsteen to Chuck Berry. If you’re a fan of music history, this show is an absolute must, but fans of superb piano playing will also be thrilled by this rare appearance. Ian McClagan: Saturday July 20 at AMSD Concerts, 4650 Mansfield St. 7:30 p.m. All ages. $20 - $47.

San Diego may not seem like a hotbed of bluegrass activity, but from the Scottsville Squirrel Barkers, with future Byrd Chris Hillman in the 1960s, to Alison Brown in the 1980s and Nickel Creek in the 1990s, the area has made major contributions to bluegrass music. Now comes the latest in that lineage, Ugly Boogie, who perform at the Soda Bar on July 11, 9 p.m. Theirs is an updated take on their Americana sound, something akin to what the Pogues did to traditional Celtic music. Live is where they excel , but regardless, the music of Ugly Boogie’s, as featured on their new album, “Train of the Damned,” is a lot of boisterous fun. Ugly Boogie: Thursday, July 11, at The Soda Bar, 3615 El Cajon Blvd. 8:30 p.m. 21 and up. $5.

Take Your Lumps Fans of punk rock will want to check out the Lumps, who perform at the Tower Bar on July 13, 9 p.m. Loud, brash and in your face, the trio is the perfect sound track for this venue, one of the best dive bars in San Diego. Featuring the voice and bass guitar playing of Melissa LaFara, the band’s song titles, such as “Homework From Hell” and “I Don’t Wanna Be You Friend,” tell the tale: This is basic rock and roll, high on energy, volume and youth. While the sound itself isn’t particularly new, in the Lumps passionate hands, punk rock is still something that thrills and gets the adrenalin pumping. The Lumps: Saturday, July 13 at The Tower Bar, 4746 El Cajon Blvd. 9 p.m. 21 and up. Cover TBD.

Heartfelt Tunes From Singer-Songwriter Tolan Shaw One of the best singer-songwriters in town, Tolan Shaw, will host a CD release show for his self-titled debut at Lestat’s Coffeehouse on July 12, 9 p.m. Local rock fans may know him from a stint with indie group the New Archaic, winners of the “Best New Artist” category in the 2009 San Diego Music Awards. Now a solo performer, he’s more recently taken the first place trophy home from the San Diego County Fair’s Singer-Songwriter contest in both 2011 and 2013. With a fistful of terrific songs, movie star looks and wonderful stage presence, it’s clear that Shaw is poised for a national breakthrough, it’s just a matter of time. More than just a guy with a guitar, Shaw’s heartfelt tunes should be the envy of other local tunesmiths, he’s that good. Tolan Shaw: Friday July 12 at Lestats, 3343 Adams Ave. 9 p.m. All ages. Cover TBD.

Supurb Songs from Crooner Jeff Berkley What would San Diego’s music scene be like without Jeff Berkley? A lot less interesting, that’s for sure. Over the past several decades, Berkley has emerged as one of the top acoustic musicians in town, as well as one of the top producers and occasional concert promoter. Perhaps best known musically as one half of the duo Berkley Hart, his studio work includes albums for such artists as Gregory Page, Tim Flannery and Barbara Nesbitt. Best of all, he writes superb songs topped with a rich, smooth voice that makes you believe every word he croons. Ubiquitous in the local music community, it’s easy to take a guy like Berkley for granted, but he’s in fact one of the town’s unsung heroes, providing the town with great new music and aspiring artists with a helping hand. Jeff Berkley: Wednesday, July 10, at Rebecca’s Coffeehouse, 3015 Juniper St. 7 p.m. All ages. No cover.

Rendering of the USO building.

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North Park News, July 2013  
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