Transplant Games come to San Diego!

The 2022 Transplant Games are being held this week in San Diego!

A big parade was held for participants this morning along Harbor Drive. (Which I just missed!)

This evening the Opening Ceremony will be held at the San Diego Convention Center.

As their website explains: Every two years the Transplant Games of America gathers together thousands of transplant recipients, living donors, donor families, individuals on the waiting list, caregivers, transplant professionals, supporters and spectators for the world’s largest celebration of life.

Transplant recipients and donors will compete in many different sporting events through this Wednesday. Most of the competition will be at the Convention Center. It will also be the location of the Transplant Games of America Village, and according to the Schedule of Events, the public is welcome!

I think I’ll go tomorrow. I’d like to watch a bicycling competition that will be held Sunday morning at Embarcadero Marina Park South, just behind the Convention Center.

Would you like to become involved–perhaps by becoming an organ donor yourself? Check out the 2022 Transplant Games web page here.

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!

Cool shops during Comic-Con, off the beaten track.

The Comic-Con crowds typically gather within a few blocks of the San Diego Convention Center. As you head north up Fifth Avenue you see fewer and fewer attendees–mostly those walking to and from downtown hotels.

But there are a couple of cool shops on Fifth Avenue on the block just south of Broadway that you might want to check out!

You might remember BAIT hosted a special Gundam event a few years ago. Well, they’re still there, and the store has plenty of pop culture merch, including some super sized collectible figures…

And check out a brand new shop located just a few doors up from BAIT.

Bard & Cards is a game store, with a big selection of board games, miniature games and RPGs…

I noticed as I walked by their window this afternoon they’ll be hosting several Comic-Con events, too. Check it out!

On Thursday, July 21 at 7 pm there will be a Kraken Dice Ultra-Chonky D20 Launch Event.

On Friday, July 22 at 2 pm there will be a New Game Launch. Card game Trickdraw.

On Saturday, July 23 at 1 pm there will be a signing and meet and greet with B. Dave Walters, the author of Dungeons & Dragons: A Darkened Wish.

If you’d like to view my coverage of Comic-Con so far, which includes hundreds of cool photographs, click here!

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!

Fun events during California State Parks Week!

It’s California State Parks Week!

At Old Town San Diego State Historic Park, some fun, free activities are planned.

Tomorrow, June 14, visitors will be invited to explore the park’s beautiful new outdoor Land of the First People with park interpreters.

On June 16, in Old Town’s grass plaza, families will enjoy engaging in historical pastimes including the Kumeyaay game ‘p’shok,’ as well as lawn games such as ‘hoop and stick,’ egg races, and tug of war from the Californio period.

Up the coast at Cardiff State Beach, on June 15, kids can participate in My Fun Future in the Outdoors, when California State Park employees share their favorite reasons to work in Parks. Kids can speak to heroes and become inspired!

Click the above links to learn more!

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!

Fans of Yankees, Rays gather near Petco Park.

Yankees fans hang out near Petco Park during Game One of the American League Division Series between New York and Tampa Bay.

I walked around Petco Park early this evening as the big playoff series between the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays was getting underway. This highly-anticipated match-up of two great American League Division Series teams is taking place in San Diego due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the necessity for players to stay in a safe bubble.

I noticed fans of both the Yankees and Rays had gathered near the ballpark. Some of the fans were trying to peer into Petco Park to watch a little of the action–either live on the field or via the huge video boards. Others were watching the televised game at nearby bars and restaurants. I must say the majority of fans I noticed were rooting for New York. I did see a few Tampa Bay fans, but they were all inside one eatery beyond the reach of my camera…

I noticed these guys with video equipment trying to capture some of the mood outside Petco Park. From here all you can see of the game is one large video board.
As you can see, some New York Yankees fans walking about would give me a thumbs up!
That crack in the fence beside Gallagher Square is the one place I know of where you can actually see action on the field. You can barely glimpse the tops of heads in the bullpen, part of the pitching mound area, and part of the home team’s dugout!
If you walk around Petco Park on its east side, you can see part of the main video board. When I snapped this photo, Tampa Bay was up to bat!
Another New York thumbs up!
Padres and Yankees fans watch Monday’s televised postseason game at tables out on an East Village sidewalk.
Can you believe it? These guys had just read a Cool San Diego Sights blog post on their phone moments before I spoke to them! Looks to me like they’re having a good time!

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!

Plaques honor golf champions at Torrey Pines.

San Diego’s beloved Torrey Pines Golf Course is one of the most beautiful and famous golf courses in the world. It has a history of great competitions between the world’s top professional golfers.

Last weekend I walked a little around Torrey Pines Golf Course and took photos of outdoor plaques that honor notable past champions.

Plaques along one side of a practice putting green at Torrey Pines Golf Course.
Plaques along one side of a practice putting green at Torrey Pines Golf Course.

The Century Club WALK OF FAME.
The Century Club WALK OF FAME.

Arnold Palmer, San Diego Open Champion 1957, 1961.
Arnold Palmer, San Diego Open Champion 1957, 1961.

Billy Casper, San Diego Open Champion 1966.
Billy Casper, San Diego Open Champion 1966.

Gene Littler, San Diego Open Champion 1954.
Gene Littler, San Diego Open Champion 1954.

Tom Watson, San Diego Open Champion 1977, 1980.
Tom Watson, San Diego Open Champion 1977, 1980.

Craig Stadler, Buick Invitational Champion 1994.
Craig Stadler, Buick Invitational Champion 1994.

Jack Nicklaus, San Diego Open Champion 1969.
Jack Nicklaus, San Diego Open Champion 1969.

Scott Simpson, Buick Invitational Champion 1998.
Scott Simpson, Buick Invitational Champion 1998.

Gary Player, Buick Invitational Champion 1963.
Gary Player, Buick Invitational Champion 1963.

108th United States Open Championship, June 12-16, 2008. Champion Tiger Woods.
108th United States Open Championship, June 12-16, 2008. Champion Tiger Woods.

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!

Watching a coronavirus game at Petco Park.

During this shortened coronavirus pandemic baseball season, is it possible to actually watch a Padres game at Petco Park? Assuming you aren’t positioned in one of the nearby high-rise buildings? Well, sort of…

Today after work I headed to Petco Park, knowing a Padres afternoon game would be in progress. I was curious to see whether anything interesting was going on at the ballpark–if there was anything to see at all. The Padres and other Major League Baseball teams have taken many steps to protect the public and their staff from the highly contagious COVID-19 virus.

I did see the Arizona Diamondbacks buses parked outside. I did hear the distant announcer vaguely calling plays, music playing between at-bats and innings, and recorded cheering.

When I walked around to Social Tap and the nearby entrance of Gallagher Square (which used to be called Park at the Park), I noticed some fans were hanging out behind the fence bordering the kids’ small ball field.

I joined them.

We could see the video screen that faces Gallagher Square, and one of Petco Park’s faraway scoreboards. We could clearly hear the game–as one would hear it on television, without the play-by-play or commentary. Through a teeny tiny gap in the fence it was possible to see the tops of the heads of visiting bullpen pitchers, the pitcher’s mound and a little tiny bit of the home dugout. But you really couldn’t tell what was going on.

What was fun was the idea that I was actually at the ballpark, with a few other devoted fans!

I happened to walk up as the Padres were trailing the Diamondbacks 1-2. Right after I arrived, a huge rally began and the Padres were soon leading 6-2. Everyone cheered.

Even though nobody heard the few of us.

The Pads won!

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!

Learn to play horseshoes in San Diego!

I made a cool discovery today!

If you’d like to learn how to play the game of horseshoes, you have an opportunity to do so in San Diego’s beautiful Balboa Park!

During my walk this morning, I spotted members of the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club out having fun in the horseshoe pits in the southwest corner of the park. I spoke with some of the friendly folks and learned that the public is invited to learn the game with a free horseshoe pitching lesson! The lessons are held on Thursdays at 6 pm, near the corner of Juniper Street and Sixth Avenue. Look for the blue sign that reads San Diego Chess Club/Balboa Park Horseshoe Club.

During the present coronavirus pandemic, they have taken all the necessary precautions, so you can feel safe.

Make sure you notify the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club San Diego you’d like a free lesson, so someone will definitely be there! You can connect via their Facebook page here.

The San Diego Horseshoe Pitching Club has a lot of fun at the facility also known as the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club.
The San Diego Horseshoe Pitching Club has a lot of fun at the facility also known as the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club.

David Lavallee of the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club is working to grow the love of the game in San Diego.
David Lavallee of the Balboa Park Horseshoe Club is working to grow the love of the game in San Diego.

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!

Nine mysterious shadows in San Diego!

Mystery Shadow #1

Ready to have some fun?

Can you identify the location of each shadow?

Here are nine photos of mysterious shadows that I took in the past couple weeks.

All are from walks through downtown or Balboa Park.

Mystery Shadow #2

Mystery Shadow #3

Mystery Shadow #4

Mystery Shadow #5

Mystery Shadow #6

Mystery Shadow #7

Mystery Shadow #8

Mystery Shadow #9

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!

The dance of Petanque in Balboa Park.

Today, as I walked through the Morley Field section of Balboa Park, I was excited to see a good crowd competing at the Petanque Courts, otherwise known as the Petanquedrome!

Turns out today was the San Diego Club de Petanque’s big San Diego Select Doubles Open Tournament!

I paused to watch the spectacle.

Hands lifted and released, spheres spun and collided. Calculating players orbited. I thought I was watching a celestial dance.

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!

Photos of 2019 Labor Day Stickball Tournament!

Around noon today I spent some time in Little Italy watching the action-packed 2019 Labor Day Stickball Tournament. This very cool annual event seems to grow larger every year, attracting top stickball teams from across the country.

In 2019 the Labor Day Stickball Tournament features 18 teams, including three teams from New York and two teams from Florida. Everyone is competing to have their team name engraved on The Jillie Championship Trophy. San Diego’s own Whompers are the current champions.

During Labor Day weekend, games are played on four fields in Little Italy. It’s fun to watch pedestrians walking down a sidewalk in the field of play suddenly see a ball smashed past them! The looks of surprise!

As I watched one game beside the outfield on Columbia Street, near the San Diego Firehouse Museum, Big Lou came up and introduced himself to me. He’s a retired player who has been inducted into the New York Emperors Stickball League Hall of Fame. It’s his first time in San Diego.

Big Lou told me all about the history of stickball, it’s popularity on the East Coast and in Puerto Rico, and how generations of players have enjoyed the game. His love for the game was in his voice and in his eyes.

Enjoy some photos of the action…

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!