Beauty and heart in Balboa Park.

A busy Sunday afternoon in Balboa Park. There is much living to do.
People walk through Balboa Park. There is much living to do.

Another fine Sunday afternoon in Balboa Park.

More beauty.

More sunshine.

More smiles.

More heart.

I could take a million photographs during walks through Balboa Park, because there is always something new.

Dancers perform at the International Cottages during the House of Lebanon lawn program.
Dancers perform at the International Cottages during the House of Lebanon lawn program.
Lebanese food is devoured on a sunny San Diego day.
Yummy authentic Lebanese food is devoured on a sunny San Diego day.
Amazing artwork displayed inside the Casa del Prado for the 43rd Annual Sumi-e Ten Japanese Brush Painting Exhibition.
Exquisite artwork displayed inside the Casa del Prado for the 43rd Annual Sumi-e Ten Japanese Brush Painting Exhibition.
Taking up a brush, learning how to craft elegant beauty.
Young people take up a brush, learning to transform ink into elegant beauty.
Autumn seasonal display in the Botanical Building features pumpkins arranged among plants and flowers.
The seasonal display in the Botanical Building features pumpkins arranged among plants and flowers.
Raúl Prieto Ramírez, San Diego's Civic Organist, talks to the audience during the free Sunday concert at two o'clock.
Raúl Prieto Ramírez, San Diego’s Civic Organist, talks to the audience during the free Sunday concert at two o’clock.
Visitors to Balboa Park peer down into the Lower Garden of the Japanese Friendship Garden from the deck of the Tea Pavilion.
Peering down into the Lower Garden of the Japanese Friendship Garden from the deck of the Tea Pavilion.
Light filters through tall bamboo at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Light filters through bamboo at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
A colorful painting of Mt. Fuji by Yutaka Murakami in the Exhibit Hall at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
A painting of Mt. Fuji by Yutaka Murakami. His fantastic artwork is now on display in the Exhibit Hall at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Steel drums add flavor to the Plaza de Balboa near the Bea Evenson Fountain.
Steel drums add flavor to the Plaza de Balboa near the Bea Evenson Fountain.
People eat, talk, relax at tables in the Plaza de Panama.
People eat, talk, find comfort at tables in the Plaza de Panama.
Perusing photographs by a local artist at Art in the Park.
Browsing photographs by a local artist at the outdoor Art in the Park.
Gazing down upon the dreamy Alcazar Garden.
People filter through the dreamy Alcazar Garden.
Feeling the holiday spirit by The Old Globe Christmas Tree in Copley Plaza.
Feeling the holiday spirit by The Old Globe Christmas Tree in Copley Plaza.
Enjoying peace and warm sunlight on the grassy West Mesa of Balboa Park.
Enjoying peace and warm sunlight on the grassy West Mesa of Balboa Park.
Shining blooms in a tree.
Shining blooms in a tree.
A noisy flock of crows was perched in the eucalyptus trees near the San Diego Chess Club and Balboa Park Horseshoe Club.
A noisy flock of crows was perched in the eucalyptus trees near the San Diego Chess Club and Balboa Park Horseshoe Club.
A drum circle in Marston Point, like the joyful, beating heart of Balboa Park.
A drum circle in Marston Point. Like the joyful, beating heart of Balboa Park.

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

Do you love Balboa Park, too? Check out my other website Beautiful Balboa Park!

Fun photos of the new, friendly Quartyard!

The Quartyard in East Village moved half a year ago to this new location at the corner of Market Street and 13th Street.
The Quartyard in East Village has moved to this new location at the corner of Market Street and 13th Street.

During my walk around East Village yesterday I swung by the Quartyard, a cool container park where neighbors can gather to eat, drink, talk and enjoy live events.

About half a year ago the unique container park moved a couple blocks east from its old location, to the corner of Market Street and 13th Street. While the new space is a bit smaller, it’s a friendly, cozy nook just perfect for neighborhood gatherings.

A bit of colorful artwork can be seen inside Quartyard. I learned more art is planned for some of the surrounding containers.

In addition to Burgers and Bites by a small event stage, Quartyard features benches and this outdoor bar.
In addition to Burgers and Bites by the small live event stage, Quartyard features picnic tables and this outdoor bar.
Colorfully painted utility boxes just outside Quartyard.
Colorfully painted utility boxes just outside Quartyard.
This small area in one corner of the the container park Quartyard is perfect for pet lovers who live in the neighborhood.
This small fenced area in one corner of the container park Quartyard is perfect for dog lovers who live in the neighborhood.
A beautiful mural by local artist Gloria Muriel just inside the entrance to Quartyard in East Village.
A beautiful mural by local artist Gloria Muriel just inside the entrance to Quartyard in East Village.
A quick snack or drink can be had at the Seahorse Coffee shack out on the sidewalk.
A quick snack or drink can be purchased at the Seahorse Coffee shack out on the sidewalk.
Look at the super friendly people you'll meet!
Look at the super friendly people you’ll meet!

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

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Super yummy Mexican food downtown!

I’ve come to rely on The Taco Stand for a quick and super tasty dinner when my evening walks draw to a close in downtown San Diego. This popular eatery on B Street has some of the yummiest Mexican food to be found anywhere. And all the people there are super nice!

Even though I’m not a culinary expert, nor a food blogger, nor someone who even dines out much, I’d like to thank the folks at The Taco Stand.

When I walked past this evening, I noticed they had a table out on the sidewalk. I learned this was because they are a participating restaurant in the 26th Annual Taste of Downtown event.

I was drawn inside and found myself once again ordering a pescado burrito. The cool thing about ordering a fish burrito is that it takes longer to grill than most other items. So I can sit and watch all the mesmerizing action as the agile chefs prepare orders.

It’s a rapid paced, coordinated dance by the grill with arms flying every which way. They’re conductors of an orchestra. They’re magicians casting spells. It’s one of the many things that make living downtown so uniquely special!

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

Lane Field Park Markets debuts in San Diego!

The baseball windglyphs of local artist Lisa Schirmer fly above diners under umbrellas at Lane Field Park.
The baseball windglyphs of local artist Lisa Schirmer fly above diners under umbrellas at Lane Field Park.

I was walking along the Embarcadero today when I saw a whole bunch of activity over at Lane Field Park. I soon discovered that today was the debut of a weekly “artisanal showcase of the creative food, drink, art and craft scene in San Diego”, otherwise known as Lane Field Park Markets.

Every Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm, look for the tents and happy people inside Lane Field Park at the corner of Broadway and Harbor Drive!

Lane Field Park Markets debuted in downtown San Diego near the waterfront today.
Lane Field Park Markets debuted in downtown San Diego near the waterfront today.
Lots of people were enjoying the farmers market-like setting.
Lots of people were enjoying the sunny, grassy, outdoor farmers’ market-like setting.
I saw lots to eat and lots of crafts and other good stuff.
I saw tasty food to eat and lots of crafts and other good stuff.
Kids liked checking out the Dang Brother Pizza fire engine.
Kids liked checking out the Dang Brother Pizza fire engine.
Those look pretty yummy!
Those look pretty yummy!
A guitarist provided live music, too!
A guitarist provided live music, too!

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

A taste of the Lemon Festival in Chula Vista!

A giant smiling lemon greets me at the 22nd Annual Lemon Festival in Chula Vista!
A giant smiling lemon greets me at the 22nd Annual Lemon Festival in Chula Vista!

I’ve never been to Chula Vista’s Lemon Festival before. So this year I thought I’d take the trolley down to the South Bay to experience this big annual event!

Not only is the Lemon Festival, which takes place along a stretch of Third Avenue, a whole lot of fun, but visitors have the opportunity to learn about the history of Chula Vista and how it once was a major center of the Southern California citrus industry.

With construction of the Sweetwater Dam completed in 1888, and the arrival of the railroad in the South Bay, Chula Vista became the perfect place to grow sun-loving lemons. At one point in the early 20th century there were nearly two thousand acres of lemon groves in the area. Chula Vista even called itself the Lemon Capital of the World.

Today lemon trees are chiefly found in backyards. After World War II, the large groves began to make way for houses. Some of the developers would leave one lemon tree in the backyard of new homes.

I did see loads of lemons during the 22nd Annual Lemon Festival: lemon art, lemon costumes, lemons in treats, lemonade . . . Lemon yellow everywhere!

See for yourself!

About 50,000 people would turn out for the yearly lemon-themed event.
About 50,000 people would turn out for the yearly lemon-themed event.
These ladies had all sorts of sweet lemon treats for sale.
These ladies had all sorts of sweet lemon treats for sale.
Some friendly people from the Restored Church posed so that a blogger could take a funny photo at their booth.
Some friendly people from the Restored Church posed so that a blogger could take a funny photo at their Lemon Festival booth.
Artists at the Lemon Festival had all sorts of colorful artwork for sale that contained bright yellow.
Artists at the Lemon Festival had all sorts of colorful artwork for sale that contained bright yellow.
This lady registering people to vote had a cool lemon slice umbrella hat and smile.
This lady registering people to vote had a cool lemon slice umbrella hat and smile.
More ice cold lemonade! Sounds good on a hot summer day in San Diego's South Bay.
More ice cold lemonade! Sounds good on a hot summer day in San Diego’s South Bay.
Even this funny pooch in a wagon was selling lemonade!
Even this funny pooch in a wagon was selling lemonade!
The Chula Vista Historical Society had a booth with books and fascinating information.
The Chula Vista Historical Society had a booth with books and fascinating information.
Their display showed Chula Vista's agricultural past. Many packing companies once exported lemons around the world.
Their display showed Chula Vista’s agricultural past. Many growers and packing companies once exported lemons around the world. Some of the beautiful old crate labels have become valuable collectibles.
The display explains different grades of lemons, including culls, which were blemished, and used to make juice, furniture polish, and other by-products.
The display explains different grades of lemons, including culls, which were blemished, and used to make juice, furniture polish, and other lemon by-products.
The festival had just started and these ladies with the Third Avenue Village Association, that puts on the popular event, were putting the finishing touches on their booth.
The festival had just started and these ladies with the Third Avenue Village Association, that puts on the popular event, were almost done decorating their booth.
Another booth at the Lemon Festival had lots of old historical photographs.
Another booth at the Chula Vista Lemon Festival featured lots of interesting historical photographs.
Someone points to a photo of workers in a lemon grove at the Higgins Ranch in Keen Valley, 1901.
Someone points to a photo of workers in a lemon grove at the Higgins Ranch in Keen Valley, 1901.
Aerial photo of the Boltz lemon ranch in the mid 1920's.
Aerial photo of the Boltz lemon ranch in the mid 1920’s.
Typical Chula Vista lemon packing plant, circa 1920's.
Typical Chula Vista lemon packing plant, circa 1920’s.
Old photos of Chula Vista streetcar and train at Third Avenue.
Old photos of Chula Vista streetcar and train at Third Avenue.
Bonita lemon pickers, 1913.
Bonita lemon pickers, 1913.
Meanwhile, people spin a lemon-themed prize wheel at the festival.
Meanwhile, people spin a lemon-themed prize wheel at the festival.
At the Lemonade Bandstand, entertainment included live music, a largest lemon and lemon peel contest, a lemon costume contest, and lemon pie eating contest.
At the Lemonade Bandstand, entertainment included live music, a largest lemon and lemon peel contest, a lemon costume contest, and lemon pie eating contest.
People watch the Lemon Squeezers play rock and roll music with a twist!
People watch the Lemon Squeezers play rock and roll music with a twist!
Cool local band, the Lemon Squeezers, at the Chula Vista Lemon Festival.
Cool local band, the Lemon Squeezers, at the Chula Vista Lemon Festival.
That great music has people dancing!
That great music has people smiling and dancing!
Batman and Wonder Woman dropped on by and posed for a photo by the Lemon Bar sign.
Batman and Wonder Woman dropped on by and posed for a photo by the Lemon Bar sign.
All that fun made me thirsty for some lemonade!
All that fun has made me thirsty for some lemonade!

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Lovely cultists, Sharkzilla feedings at Comic-Con!

Sharkzilla has taken another bite of a surfboard at The Experience during 2018 San Diego Comic-Con!
Sharkzilla has taken another bite of a surfboard at The Experience during 2018 San Diego Comic-Con!

As you will see, I had quite an experience at The Experience late this morning. This free public attraction is one of many offsites found around downtown during 2018 San Diego Comic-Con.

The very moment you enter, prepare to be mesmerized…

Looking down at The Experience in Petco Park's Lexus Premier Lot from the Harbor Drive pedestrian bridge.
Looking down at The Experience in Petco Park’s Lexus Premier Lot from the Harbor Drive pedestrian bridge.
People stream into the fun Comic-Con offsite.
People stream into the fun, free to the public Comic-Con offsite.
Near the entrance, buses from hotels around the city drop off a motley group of Comic-Con attendees.
Near the entrance, buses from hotels around the city drop off a motley group of Comic-Con attendees.
Shark fins bob past the big stage at The Experience.
Shark fins bob past the big stage at The Experience.
People relax and watch a demo video game up on a big screen.
People relax and watch a demo video game up on a big screen.
Shortly after I arrive, three lovely, sweet, irresistible ladies with Sacred Lies prepare to encircle me with their scarfs.
Shortly after I arrive, three lovely, sweet, irresistible ladies with Sacred Lies prepare to encircle me with their scarfs.
Hello! Sign me up for your cult, or whatever it is!
I’m encircled! Hello! Sign me up for your cult, or whatever it is!
I spotted Pac-Gentleman again, near Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. That seems a lot of marshmallow for a gentleman to waka-waka-waka gobble all at once.
I spotted Pac-Gentleman again, near Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. That seems a lot of marshmallow for a gentleman to waka-waka-waka gobble all at once.
But I could easily gobble a few free scoops of DC Super Hero Ice Cream!
But I could probably digest a few free scoops of DC Super Hero Ice Cream!
At the Cloak and Dagger activation, this nice lady seemed about ready to give a sermon.
At the Cloak and Dagger activation, this nice lady seemed about ready to dazzle me with a sermon.
People who line up at Ghostbusters World can have their photo taken next to the original ECTO-1 from the movies.
People who line up at Ghostbusters World can have their photo taken next to the original ECTO-1 from the movies.
Hopefully Hulk doesn't become too angry when you get your group hug at the Marvel activation.
Hopefully Hulk doesn’t become too angry when you get your group hug at the Marvel Avengers activation.
The Impractical Jokers had a food truck serving Scoopski Potatoes.
The Impractical Jokers had a food truck serving Scoopski Potatoes.
I believe people could get free samples of Shin Black Noodle Soup, but I didn't check it out.
I believe people could get free samples of Shin Black Noodle Soup, but I didn’t check it out.
Project Blue Book had a Top Secret tent but with my sketchy background, I don't have clearance, so I averted my eyes.
Project Blue Book had a Top Secret tent. With my sketchy background, I don’t have clearance, so I averted my eyes.
A huge cool sculpture at the Guild Wars 2 activation.
A huge cool sculpture at the Guild Wars 2 activation.
Discovery Channel celebrates Shark Week with an enormous life-size Megalodon named Sharkzilla.
Discovery Channel celebrates Shark Week with an enormous life-size mechanical Megalodon named Sharkzilla.
I arrived in time for a Sharkzilla feeding. The huge shark is going to chomp on a wooden pallet!
I arrived in time for a Sharkzilla feeding. The huge hungry shark is going to chomp on a wooden pallet!
Personally, I find pallets to be unpalatable.
Personally, I find pallets to be unpalatable.
Maybe a surfboard tastes better.
Maybe a surfboard tastes better.
I remember having something like this done when I was a kid and got my braces.
I remember having something like this done when I was a kid and got my braces.
Some tasty bloody zombies that will be fed to Sharkzilla later in the day.
Some tasty bloody zombies that will be fed to Sharkzilla later in the day.

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

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

How you can help USO San Diego fight hunger!

The USO is collecting food at Grocery Outlet Bargain Markets around San Diego. Buy a five dollar bag of food for a hungry neighbor, receive a five dollar coupon for the store!
The USO is collecting food at Grocery Outlet Bargain Markets around San Diego. Buy a five dollar bag of food for those who are hungry, receive a five dollar coupon from the store!

Before I post more photos of Comic-Con, let me alert my local readers to a great opportunity to help others. I just discovered an easy and essentially free way to help fight hunger in San Diego!

Walking back home from Comic-Con, I realized I needed groceries, so I swung by the downtown Grocery Outlet Bargain Market. As I stepped inside, I was greeted by two friendly volunteers from the USO. They’re working to fight hunger in San Diego!

I learned that during the month of July, shoppers who purchase a $5 bag of food from their table to help feed the hungry receive a $5 coupon from the store!

Kudos to the USO and their efforts. Kudos to Grocery Outlet Bargain Market for their generosity!

I also learned the USO collects food twice a month from a mobile food pantry in partnership with Feeding San Diego. Check out the USO San Diego Facebook page for times and locations!

USO San Diego collects food twice a month in partnership with Feeding San Diego. Check the USO Facebook page for their Mobile Food Pantry locations!
USO San Diego collects food twice a month in partnership with Feeding San Diego. Check the USO Facebook page for their Mobile Food Pantry locations!

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