Getting ready for two epic Labor Day events!

Getting ready for the 2016 US Sand Sculpting Challenge and 3D Art Expo at the B Street Pier. A sand sculpture will soon rise here to welcome Labor Day crowds along the Embarcadero.
Getting ready for the 2016 US Sand Sculpting Challenge and 3D Art Expo at the B Street Pier. A cool sand sculpture will soon appear here to welcome passing Labor Day crowds on the Embarcadero.

Two epic events are coming to San Diego’s Embarcadero this coming Labor Day weekend! The 2016 US Sand Sculpting Challenge and 3D Art Expo, which will take place near the Cruise Ship Terminal on the B Street Pier, and the 2016 Festival of Sail, which will take place at and around the Maritime Museum of San Diego!

I’ve blogged about both amazing annual events the past couple years. The sand sculptures, created by some of the best sand artists in the entire world, are utterly mind-blowing. The tall ships are a feast not only for the eyes, but for the senses once you step aboard.

I took a slow easy walk along the Embarcadero a short while ago and snapped a few pics of very early preparation for both events. If I feel well enough next weekend, expect to see lots of super cool photos from both epic Labor Day weekend events!

One of several U.S. Navy floating docks has been set in position near the Maritime Museum of San Diego, in preparation for the 2016 Festival of Sail.
One of several U.S. Navy floating docks has been set in position near the Maritime Museum of San Diego, in preparation for visiting tall ships at the 2016 Festival of Sail.
Californian, official tall ship of California, will participate in the 2016 Festival of Sail this coming Labor Day weekend. Right now it's docked at the Maritime Museum.
Californian, the official tall ship of California, will participate in the 2016 Festival of Sail this coming Labor Day weekend. Right now she is docked at the Maritime Museum, her home.
Gaff-rigged topsail schooner Bill of Rights, based in South Bay's Chula Vista, will be one of many amazing tall ships participating this year in the Festival of Sail.
Gaff-rigged topsail schooner Bill of Rights, based in South Bay’s Chula Vista, will be one of many amazing tall ships participating this year in the Festival of Sail. I spotted it cruising across San Diego Bay today.
Visitor to the Maritime Museum of San Diego sits peacefully on a bench near the aft of the 1904 steam yacht Medea. Big crowds will arrive on Labor Day weekend!
Visitor to the Maritime Museum of San Diego sits peacefully on a bench near the aft of the 1904 steam yacht Medea. Big crowds will arrive here on Labor Day weekend!
The 2016 Festival of Sail takes place Labor Day weekend on the Embarcadero. If you are in San Diego and love historical ships, you must go!
The 2016 Festival of Sail takes place Labor Day weekend on the Embarcadero. If you are in San Diego and love historical ships, you must go!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

The people and legacy of Old Town San Diego.

Visitor to the second floor of the McCoy House Museum learns about some notable early residents of Old Town San Diego.
Visitor to the second floor of the McCoy House Museum learns about some notable early residents of Old Town San Diego.

Should you visit the McCoy House Museum in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, be sure to venture up the stairs to the second floor. There you’ll discover several fascinating exhibits. In addition to old photographs of notable early residents of San Diego, you’ll find an explanation of Old Town’s gradual decline as competing New Town (the site of modern downtown San Diego) grew and became the center of government and commerce. You will also learn about Old Town’s continuing legacy, including the events that led to the creation of Old Town San Diego State Historic Park in 1968.

If you’d like to read the displays, click the images to enlarge them.

(You might recall that I recently blogged about the many interpretive displays on the first floor of the McCoy House Museum. They provide a great deal of detailed information about Old Town’s early history.)

From a window on the museum’s second floor one can also look down upon the scraggly native plant garden just northwest of the McCoy House. A map near the window shows the location of Sycamore, Toyon, Oak, Cottonwood, Elderberry and Willow trees. Other native plants include Yerba Mansa, Datura, Aster, Poppy, Deerweed, Sumac, Lemonadeberry, Manzanita, Monkeyflower, different Sages, Deergrass, Prickly Pear and Yucca. Many of these plants were used by the Native American Kumeyaay in their daily lives long before explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo discovered San Diego Bay in 1542.

Pio Pico settled in San Diego in 1819 after the death of his father, a soldier assigned to the Presidio. Merchant and rancher, he later lived in Los Angeles and became the last governor of Mexican Alta California.
Pio Pico settled in San Diego in 1819 after the death of his father, a soldier assigned to the Presidio. Merchant and rancher, he later lived in Los Angeles and became the last governor of Mexican Alta California.
In 1865, Mary Chase Walker became Old Town's first school teacher. She taught at the one room Mason Street schoolhouse and described early San Diego as a desolate place. She went on to join the suffragette movement.
In 1865, Mary Chase Walker became Old Town’s first school teacher. She taught at the one room Mason Street schoolhouse and described early San Diego as a desolate place. She went on to join the suffragette movement.
Agoston Haraszthy, born in Hungary, led a fascinating life. As an American pioneer, businessman and wine expert, he became San Diego's first town marshal and the first county sheriff.
Agoston Haraszthy, born in Hungary, led a fascinating life. As an American pioneer, businessman and wine expert, he became San Diego’s first town marshal and the first county sheriff.
Fire devastated Old Town in 1872. At the time only one water pump existed, and it was broken. Firefighters watched helplessly. The fire and many other factors helped to bring about the rise of competing New Town.
Fire devastated Old Town in 1872. At the time only one water pump existed, and it was broken. Firefighters watched helplessly. The fire and many other factors helped to bring about the rise of competing New Town.
Various fascinating historical exhibits can be explored on the second floor of the McCoy House Museum in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
Various fascinating historical exhibits can be explored on the second floor of the McCoy House Museum in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
In the early 20th century, neglected, ruined buildings in Old Town were fixed up and converted into tourist attractions. Entrepreneur John D. Spreckels extended his streetcar line to Old Town.
In the early 20th century, neglected, ruined buildings in Old Town were fixed up and converted into tourist attractions. Entrepreneur John D. Spreckels extended his streetcar line to Old Town.
Artifacts found under the rebuilt McCoy House date from the 1830's to 1850's. They include fragments of daily life from that era
Artifacts found under the rebuilt McCoy House date from the 1830’s to 1850’s. They include fragments of daily life from that era
Archaelogists analyze each find, record every detail. These objects probably came from the time when Eugenia Silvas owned this site. Descendents still live in San Diego and are involved in Old Town's a
Archaeologists analyze each find, record every detail. These objects probably came from the time when Eugenia Silvas owned this site. Family descendants still live in San Diego and are involved in Old Town’s activities.
Archaeologist's tools on display in the McCoy House Museum.
Archaeologist’s tools on display in the McCoy House Museum.
Once again, Old Town became a tourist destination in the 1930's when San Diego Avenue became connected to the new Coast Highway.
Once again, Old Town became a tourist destination in the 1930’s when San Diego Avenue became connected to the new Coast Highway.
Old Town languished during World War II. After the war, some suggested setting aside Old Town as a historic community. In 1968, Old Town became a state historic park.
Old Town languished during World War II. After the war, some suggested setting aside Old Town as a historic community. In 1968, Old Town San Diego became a state historic park.
Photographs in the McCoy House Museum recall Old Town San Diego's colorful past.
Photographs in the McCoy House Museum recall Old Town San Diego’s colorful past.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

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Taking flight at the Torrey Pines Gliderport!

Paraglider high above the Pacific Ocean catches a warm summer updraft created by sandstone cliffs at San Diego's famous Torrey Pines Gliderport.
Paraglider high above the Pacific Ocean catches a warm summer updraft created by sandstone cliffs at San Diego’s famous Torrey Pines Gliderport.

The world-famous Torrey Pines Gliderport is possibly the coolest, most awesome place in all of San Diego. Hang gliders and paragliders float silently in the sky above rugged sandstone cliffs and the blue Pacific Ocean, painting a rare scene that few will ever forget. Here are some photos that I took this morning.

I arrived too early–the wind necessary to sustain gliders, I learned, doesn’t usually kick in until about 11:30. No worries. There were so many interesting things to photograph, and the weather and scenery were so pleasant, I just moseyed around and sat here and there and let each moment unfold.

Please enjoy the following photos and make sure to read the captions for more detailed explanations!

The Torrey Pines Gliderport was established in 1928 and is an active aviation facility. It is also a favorite place to enjoy incredible natural scenery and perhaps get a bite to eat.
The Torrey Pines Gliderport was established in 1928 and is an active aviation facility. It’s also a favorite place to enjoy incredible natural scenery and perhaps get a bite to eat.
Looking north along the San Diego coast from a point above Black's Beach. A solitary figure looks out at the mighty ocean from atop a weathered sandstone cliff.
Looking north along the San Diego coast from a point above Black’s Beach. A solitary figure looks out at the mighty ocean from atop a weathered sandstone cliff.
A hang glider is moved on the grassy hill near the Gliderport. Students, instructors and experienced gliders alike must wait for a good, steady wind.
A hang glider is moved on the grassy hill near the Gliderport. Students, instructors and experienced gliders alike must wait for a good, steady wind.
While I wandered about I made a cool discovery! Atop the hill beside the Torrey Pines Gliderport, the folks of Sky Falconry were getting ready for a morning class.
While I wandered about I made a cool discovery! Atop the hill beside the Torrey Pines Gliderport, the experts of Sky Falconry were getting ready to teach a morning class. Anyone can fly a bird of prey!
Several hawks trained to fly and return on command have a chance to stretch their wings before the class of falconry students arrives.
Several hawks trained to fly and return on command have a chance to stretch their wings before the class of falconry students arrives.
Taking flight indeed! A beautiful raptor flies past its handler. Beyond, the blue Pacific Ocean stretches to the horizon.
Taking flight indeed! A beautiful raptor flies past its handler. Beyond, the blue Pacific Ocean stretches to the horizon.
The Sky Falconry class has begun and I take another photo, then leave these good people in peace. There is much else to see...
The Sky Falconry class has begun and I take another photo, then leave these good people in peace. There is much else to see…
A view looking south from the Torrey Pines Gliderport. Someone stands on the lifeguard perch that overlooks the beach below. La Jolla Cove and a bit of Scripps Pier can be seen in the background.
A view looking south from the Torrey Pines Gliderport. Someone stands on the lifeguard perch that overlooks the beach below. La Jolla Cove and the end of Scripps Pier can be seen in the background.
Some activity! Someone wearing a bulky but lightweight paragliding harness sets out across the grass from the patio area at the Torrey Pines Gliderport.
Some activity! Someone wearing a bulky but lightweight paragliding harness sets out across the grass from the patio area at the Torrey Pines Gliderport.
Students have begun to learn the basics of paragliding, including how to safely launch. Not enough wind to take to the air yet.
Students have begun to learn the basics of paragliding, including how to safely launch. Not enough wind to take to the air yet.
A quick photo through the Torrey Pines Gliderport's casual patio area, with picnic benches. I spotted an outdoor grill and pool table nearby!
A quick photo through the Torrey Pines Gliderport’s casual patio area, with picnic benches. I spotted an outdoor grill and pool table nearby!
The Giderport's well-stocked Cliffhanger Café has yummy hamburgers . . . and jaw-dropping views nearby!
The Giderport’s well-stocked Cliffhanger Café has yummy hamburgers . . . and jaw-dropping views just steps away!
A short hallway that leads into the Torrey Pines Gliderport store features many photos of past hang gliding and paragliding action.
A short hallway that leads into the Torrey Pines Gliderport store features many photos of past hang gliding and paragliding adventures.
Just south of the Gliderport's launch area, a bench makes a perfect place to experience sun, ocean and sea breeze.
Just south of the Gliderport’s launch area, a bench makes a perfect place to experience sun, ocean and sea breeze.
A forlorn concrete monument stands near the dirt parking lot, south of the Torrey Pines Gliderport. On one side a tile mosaic depicts a sailboat and gliders in the sky.
A forlorn concrete monument stands near the dirt parking lot, south of the Torrey Pines Gliderport. On one side a tile mosaic depicts a sailboat and gliders in the sky.
On the opposite side is a corroded historical marker. To honor the spirit, ingenuity, and enthusiasm of the pioneers who flew gliders in the 1930's at Torrey Pines.
On the opposite side is a corroded historical marker. To honor the spirit, ingenuity, and enthusiasm of the pioneers who flew gliders in the 1930’s at Torrey Pines.
Another look north at beautiful high cliffs of eroded sandstone. The coastline melts away into San Diego's North County.
Another look north at beautiful high cliffs of eroded sandstone. The coastline melts away into San Diego’s North County.  No gliders yet!
A couple of surfers prepare to descend the cliff to Black's Beach far below. For those who don't follow the established trail, it can be a very treacherous descent, and one occasionally sees rescues on the local news.
A couple of surfers prepare to descend the cliff to Black’s Beach far below. For those who don’t follow the established trail, it can be a very treacherous descent, and one occasionally sees rescues on the local news.
A raised outdoor eating area at the Torrey Pines Gliderport is the perfect place to watch all the aerial action. But still too early...
A raised outdoor eating area at the Torrey Pines Gliderport is the perfect place to watch all the aerial action. But still too early…not enough wind…
The Torrey Pines Gliderport bills itself as America's premier flight school. One can enjoy tandem paraglider and hang glider flights with an instructor.
The Torrey Pines Gliderport bills itself as America’s premier flight school. One can enjoy tandem paraglider and hang glider flights with an expert instructor.
The breeze has picked up a bit. More students are trying out their equipment on safe land. A happy dog is loving life.
The breeze has picked up a bit. More students are trying out their equipment on safe land. A happy dog is loving life.
A paragliding student learns the ropes. In the distance you can see the equally famous Torrey Pines Golf Course, which hosted the epic 2008 U.S. Open.
A paragliding student learns the ropes. In the distance you can see the equally famous Torrey Pines Golf Course, which hosted the epic 2008 U.S. Open.
More spectators have arrived and the nearby grassy hill has become more active. The falconry class is still underway.
More spectators have arrived and the nearby grassy hill has become more active. The falconry class is still underway.
Almost enough lift!
Almost enough lift!
Carrying all the paragliding gear back up the hill. When actually gliding, if too much elevation is lost, some gliders will land on the beach. Then the climb is much, much worse!
Carrying all the paragliding gear back up the hill. When actually gliding, if too much elevation is lost, some gliders will land on the beach. Then the climb is much, much worse!
Just a cool shot of a paraglider spreading her wings.
Just a cool shot of a paraglider spreading her wings.
Finally! The breeze is pretty good now! The first paraglider is ready to launch! Lift is provided by wind that rises along the long cliffside.
Finally! The breeze is pretty good now! The first paraglider is ready to launch! Lift is provided by wind that pushes up against the long cliffside.
And he's off, among the birds!
And he’s off, among the birds!
A tranquil ride above and through the beautiful blue. Paragliders wind their way back and forth along the cliffs, catching the updraft.
A tranquil ride above and through the beautiful blue. Paragliders wind their way back and forth along the cliffs, catching the updraft.
A photo that provides a hint of why the Torrey Pines Gliderport is such a special place.
A photo that provides a hint of why the Torrey Pines Gliderport is such a special place.
A fantastic ride through the sky!
A fantastic ride through the sky!
Another paraglider has joined the aerial dance. The lower part of his body is enclosed in a cool-looking pod harness.
Another paraglider has joined the slow aerial dance. The lower part of his body is enclosed in a cool-looking pod harness.
Paragliding above Black's Beach, a favorite destination for surfers and Southern California nudists!
Paragliding above Black’s Beach, a favorite destination for surfers and Southern California nudists!
Just gliding along.
Just gliding along.

This blog now features thousands of photos around San Diego!  Are you curious?  There’s lots of cool stuff to check out!

Here’s the Cool San Diego Sights main page, where you can read the most current blog posts.  If you’re using a small mobile device, click those three parallel lines up at the top–that opens up my website’s sidebar, where you’ll see the most popular posts, a search box, and more!

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Three achievements that have touched many people.

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I haven’t walked or blogged much in the past few weeks. I’m a bit under the weather. I’ll try to get out on Sunday to find something interesting!

I’ve been thinking differently about Cool San Diego Sights lately. So many hours have been spent–mostly pleasurable ones–in building my blog. But what does all this effort amount to? I enjoy walking and making cool discoveries. It feels good to preserve and share those discoveries. And to spread some sunshine. Happiness in this troubled old world is a good thing.

I enjoy the interaction with other bloggers and people on social media, even if I only sit at my computer for a short while each day.

I enjoy the occasional surprises, such as being contacted by artists and others whose work I’ve documented. That is really amazing!

I’ve also been fortunate in rare instances to do some significant good, or touch people in a way that can make a real difference. There are three achievements in particular that I thought might be worth sharing again.

The first was helping in a small way to uncover an important part of San Diego and United States Navy history. The Navy Bicentennial Commemorative Plaque is on public display on the Greatest Generation Walk, a few steps from the USS Midway Museum, and it is passed by thousands of people every day. But it seemed all knowledge of its origin had been lost. I merely posted a plea: help solve a mystery! And, mysteriously, thanks to the magic of the internet–and perhaps word of mouth–over time information trickled in. Finally I was sent several amazing old photographs of the plaque’s creators and its forging, and a typewritten article revealing the details of its origin. I titled that post Creating a plaque: Navy history in San Diego revealed!

A second achievement, the one that probably makes the biggest difference in the lives of people, was a post I wrote about how to help the homeless in San Diego. I am absolutely astonished at how almost every single day, people coming to my blog click the links to the charities and organizations that strive to assist the homeless. There have been hundreds of clicks. I seldom ask my readers to share anything on my blog, but if you are so inclined, I titled that post 20 Ways To Help the Homeless in San Diego.

And finally, I wrote a short story that seems to have touched many deeply. It has even gone a bit viral in surprising places all around the world. It’s about how to change the world. I titled that post A short story to make you smile and cry. Realizing short stories don’t really fit on a photo blog about San Diego, I created another blog for my short works of fiction. If you like to read, perhaps click Short Stories by Richard.

Thank you all for following Cool San Diego Sights. This blogging thing is a strange, mysterious undertaking. Hundreds of visitors each day, from everywhere around the planet, most coming from search engines, and I have no idea who those people are. The whole experience has changed my life in far too many ways to mention.  For the better!  When I first started the blog, I had no notion that I would arrive here.

Well, hopefully on to more adventures! Have a great rest of the weekend!

Even more random street art in North Park!

Part of a spray paint street mural in North Park by artists Maxx Moses and Glow.
Part of a spray paint street mural in North Park by artists Maxx Moses and Glow.

Here are even more photos of random street art that I’ve encountered during walks through North Park!

I’ve already covered many amazing street murals in the neighborhood. You can find those by surfing around my blog, clicking related articles, tags or performing a search in the sidebar. Cool San Diego Sights contains hundreds of San Diego street art photos that you might enjoy!

North Park utility box depicts meditating figure.
North Park utility box depicts meditating figure.
Many utility boxes in North Park (like other San Diego neighborhoods) have been enlivened with colorful street art. This box has the word SOAK and some tentacles.
Many utility boxes in North Park (like other San Diego neighborhoods) have been enlivened with colorful street art. This box has the word SOAK and some tentacles.
Lightning inside a deadhead skull separates night from day. Urban art on a shop located on North Park's University Avenue.
Lightning inside a deadhead skull separates night from day. Urban art on a shop located on North Park’s University Avenue.
Huge glowing crystals grow from a North Park sidewalk!
Huge glowing crystals grow from a North Park sidewalk!
More creatively decorated utility boxes along University Avenue in North Park.
More creatively decorated utility boxes along University Avenue in North Park.
Unusual artwork near a building's rooftop features alien-like creatures with three eyes.
Unusual artwork near a building’s rooftop features alien-like creatures with three eyes.
A cool sun with mustache above some prickly pear cacti.
A cool sun with mustache above some prickly pear cacti.
A young person holding binoculars seems to watch the people of North Park.
A young person holding binoculars seems to watch the people of North Park.
These artistic cubes are fun seats for people waiting for the bus.
These artistic cubes are fun seats for people waiting for the bus.
One unique utility box has four sides featuring subterranean slices. West shows where land meets Pacific Ocean.
One unique utility box has four sides featuring subterranean slices. West shows where land meets Pacific Ocean.
Bienvenidos! South shows the border with nearby Mexico.
Bienvenidos! South shows the border with nearby Mexico.
East shows the desert, which lies beyond our mountains.
East shows the desert, which lies beyond our mountains.
North depicts a small, happy home in North Park.
North depicts a small, happy home in North Park.
Just walking along the sidewalk, past a creatively decorated transformer box.
Just walking along the sidewalk, past a creatively decorated transformer box.
Turning a corner past pink and yellow cats.
Turning a corner past pink and yellow cats.
Utility box on 30th Street has tropical palm trees, flowers, fish and a skull.
Utility box on 30th Street has tropical palm trees, flowers, fish and a skull.
Newspaper box covered top to bottom with decals.
Newspaper box covered top to bottom with decals.
Graffiti near shop door includes a sexy lady.
Graffiti near shop door includes a sexy lady.
A typical scene on one sidewalk that stretches down 30th Street in North Park.
A typical scene on one sidewalk that stretches down 30th Street in North Park.
Street art in North Park shows a woman walking through the city.
Street art in North Park shows a woman walking through the city.
In hip, laid-back North Park, an appropriate slogan: r.i.p. bullshit
In easy-going, laid-back North Park, an appropriate slogan: r.i.p. bullshit

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

San Diego Padres Hall of Fame players at Petco Park.

The face of Dave Winfield, a past San Diego Padres superstar, now in the Baseball Hall of Fame, greets fans on the north side of Petco Park's historic Western Metal Supply Co. building.
The face of Dave Winfield, a past San Diego Padres superstar, now in the National Baseball Hall of Fame, greets fans on the north side of Petco Park’s historic Western Metal Supply Co. building.

Just before the 2016 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was played in San Diego, a special section at Petco Park was readied to showcase our baseball team’s greatest players. In addition to large iconic images of four Padres favorites which had been added to the north end of the Western Metal Supply Co. building, an impressive “Padres In Cooperstown” wall of plaques was installed near the Padres Hall of Fame, which itself opened on July 1, 2016.

The faces you see in my photos bring back many memories. My fond memories include the magical 1984 season, which I followed closely when I was a young man. I hope any Padres fans visiting my blog might enjoy their own special memories.

Randy Jones as a Padre starting pitcher won the Cy Young Award in 1976. Today he is in the San Diego Padres Hall of Fame.
Randy Jones as a starting pitcher won the Cy Young Award in 1976. Today he is in the San Diego Padres Hall of Fame.
The familiar face of Tony Gwynn, Mr. Padre, on the Western Metal Supply Co. building. One of the best Major League Baseball hitters of all time.
The familiar face of Tony Gwynn, Mr. Padre, on the Western Metal Supply Co. building. One of the best Major League Baseball hitters of all time.
The face of Trevor Hoffman, who pitched as a closer for over 15 years with the San Diego Padres. His 601 saves are the second most in MLB history.
The face of Trevor Hoffman, who pitched as a closer for over 15 years with the San Diego Padres. His 601 saves are presently the second most in MLB history.
Legends who played baseball with the San Diego Padres who are now in Cooperstown's National Baseball Hall of Fame include Ted Williams and Willie McCovey.
Legends who played baseball with the San Diego Padres who are now in Cooperstown’s National Baseball Hall of Fame include Ted Williams and Willie McCovey.
A wall at Petco Park is dedicated to Padres coaches and players who are now in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Names include Rollie Fingers, Ozzie Smith, Rickey Henderson, Goose Gossage.
A wall at Petco Park is dedicated to Padres coaches and players who are now in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Names include Rollie Fingers, Ozzie Smith, Rickey Henderson, Goose Gossage.
National Baseball Hall of Fame players who spent time with the Padres also include Roberto Alomar, Greg Maddux and Mike Piazza.
National Baseball Hall of Fame players who spent time with the Padres also include Roberto Alomar, Greg Maddux and Mike Piazza.
Dave Winfield played for the San Diego Padres from 1973 to 1980. A talented outfielder, he swung the bat with incredible power. A special plaque for him now stands in front of the "Padres In Cooperstown" wall at Petco Park.
Dave Winfield played for the San Diego Padres from 1973 to 1980. A talented outfielder, he swung the bat with power. A special plaque for him now stands separately in front of the “Padres In Cooperstown” wall at Petco Park.
Tony Gwynn was simply one of the best Major League Baseball players of all time. He spent his entire career as a San Diego Padre. He was a cheerful soul loved by everyone who knew him.
Tony Gwynn was simply one of the best Major League Baseball players of all time. He spent his entire career as a San Diego Padre. He was a cheerful soul loved by the fans and everyone who knew him.
The smiling face of Tony Gwynn on a very special plaque. It stands proudly in front of the "Padres In Cooperstown" wall at Petco Park.
The smiling face of Tony Gwynn on a very special plaque. It stands eternally in front of the “Padres In Cooperstown” wall at Petco Park.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

A colorful morning walk through Little Italy.

Colorful art in the sidewalk in San Diego's Little Italy neighborhood. A fisherman sells his fresh catch to a family by the ocean.
Colorful art in the sidewalk in San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood. A fisherman sells his fresh catch to a family by the ocean.

I walked through Little Italy yesterday morning on my way to catch the trolley. I was struck by the quiet beauty all around me. So I tried to capture a few moments with some photos.

In the interest of full disclosure, two or three of these photos are from walks on other mornings. It seems my every journey through Little Italy is magical.

It's still early morning in Little Italy, so perhaps everyone isn't quite ready to tackle the day.
It’s still early morning in Little Italy, so perhaps everyone isn’t quite ready to tackle the day.
Morning sunlight slants in to touch the side of a newly painted Victorian house near a modern hotel.
Morning sunlight slants in to touch the side of a newly painted Victorian house near a modern hotel.
Michelangelo watches--and so does a construction worker--as a new development rises in the heart of Little Italy.
Michelangelo watches–and so does a construction worker–as a new development rises in the heart of Little Italy.
This huge new development will include the public gathering space Piazza Famiglia.
This huge new development will include the public gathering space Piazza Famiglia.
Sweeping up some leaves, preparing for another day.
Sweeping up some leaves, preparing for another day.
A Little Italy Association maintenance truck has pulled up beside a wheelbarrow full of flowers.
A Little Italy Association maintenance truck has pulled up beside a wheelbarrow full of flowers.
Wisdom along the roof of one building. Do right. Fear nothing. Keep it simple. Find what you love.
Wisdom along the roof of one building. Do right. Fear nothing. Keep it simple. Find what you love.
A big red chair awaits on Little Italy's popular but now quiet India Street.
A big red chair awaits on Little Italy’s popular but now quiet India Street.
Mary and Christ Child welcome the faithful above the entrance to Our Lady of the Rosary church.
Mary and Christ Child welcome the faithful above the entrance to Our Lady of the Rosary church.
Classic bearded face provides a building wall with sculptural ornamentation.
Classic bearded face provides a building wall with sculptural ornamentation.
Little Italy San Diego street lamp banner celebrates entertainer Lady Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta.
Little Italy San Diego street lamp banner celebrates entertainer Lady Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta.
Fanciful birdhouses sit on a fence between homes in Little Italy.
Fanciful birdhouses sit on a fence between homes in Little Italy.
Be like a pineapple! Wear a crown. Stand tall and be sweet on the inside.
Be like a pineapple! Wear a crown. Stand tall and be sweet on the inside.
Greenery flows like cascading water from planters on the outside wall of the Sorrento Ristorante.
Greenery flows like cascading water from planters on the outside wall of the Sorrento Ristorante.
A quiet moment before the day's business begins.
A quiet moment before the day’s business begins.
Life and color fill the streets of the Little Italy neighborhood in downtown San Diego.
Life and color fill the streets of the Little Italy neighborhood in downtown San Diego.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!