3rd Rock from the Sun star at Comic-Con!

Fans of the television classic 3rd Rock from the Sun will have a chance to meet one of its stars this afternoon at Comic-Con 2022!

French Stewart, who played the silly character Harry Solomon, will be interacting with fans at 2:30 pm near the COZI TV activation, on a patch of grass just outside the Omni hotel, across from the San Diego Convention Center.

I don’t know if he’ll be interrupted by a transmission from the Big Giant Head, but I suppose you’ll have to be present to find out!

French Stewart was at a private event earlier this morning when these photos were snapped.

I won’t post the photo, but I observed him shaking the hands of someone special across the rope who was a very big fan. I could see from the sudden tears it was a very big and meaningful moment in a life.

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!

Morning walk before Comic-Con Preview Night!

Are you going to Comic-Con this year? If so, prepare to have lots of fun!

I walked around downtown San Diego this morning, Wednesday, the day of Comic-Con Preview Night. Most of the following photos were taken in the vicinity of the San Diego Convention Center or Petco Park.

Most offsites are approaching completion, but it looks like a few are still just setting up in the Interactive Zone at Petco Park. It’s impressive how quickly various activations are assembled and readied for the public with just hours to go.

I’ve already photographed tons of stuff on walks during the past few days. Here’s some new discoveries I noticed this morning…

Krapopolis graphics are now all over the place at the FOX offsite, which includes a big slide!

The Bandai offsite near the Marriott Marina now has lots of huge action figures providing awesome Dragon Ball photo opportunities!

Comic-Con attendees will be soon be lining up along the bayfront, even camping overnight to get good spots for favorite panels and exclusives.

The IMDb boat has returned to Comic-Con. A good place to watch for Hollywood celebrities crossing over from the convention center for interviews.

Willard R. Abbott Public School has appeared at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront’s Promenade Plaza! The offsite promotes the ABC mockumentary television series Abbott Elementary.

Someone has a swag bag, walking by the big FX offsite. Most offsite activations open tomorrow, Thursday.

Here I am walking over the Harbor Drive pedestrian bridge.

The Lexus Premier Lot by Petco Park is filling up with activations for the Interactive Zone. Those campsite tents below are Pinecone Trooper Pete’s Friend Zone. It promotes the CBS show Ghosts.

Nintendo Switch will have a lot of cool video games and stuff, too.

A cool graphic. Mario Strikers: Battle League.

And here’s Kirby and the Forgotten Land.

These friendly guys set up by the sidewalk early with great comic books! I got a few!

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!

William Shatner to join Michael Jackson, R2-D2 and C-3PO!

Next Thursday, July 21, 2022, William Shatner will produce handprints during San Diego Comic-Con. And these impressions by an iconic Hollywood star will join those of many others, including the likes of Michael Jackson, R2-D2 and C-3PO!

I stepped into the Theatre Box movie theater in the Gaslamp Quarter today and saw many of the handprints that already decorate the floor. I was told some of the handprints were produced in and imported from Hollywood. But those of William Shatner will be freshly made in San Diego!

Tickets are available here to watch the handprint ceremony, and for an autograph session with the legendary Captain Kirk, plus a performance, and an afterparty!

Oh, look. Here come the now infamous hands of Will Smith…

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!

Celebrities, giant chickens, and history in Carlsbad!

Did you know the historic 1914 Twin Inns restaurant in Carlsbad hosted a variety of celebrities over the years? (Including Groucho Marx, who took the occasion to promote his latest movie Duck Soup.)

Did you know the restaurant’s big plaster chickens along Highway 101 were featured in National Geographic Magazine?

Did you know the first Carlsbad City Council meeting took place underneath the restaurant where a teen hot rod club met?

Did you know the Twin Inns provided take out chicken dinners that were packed inside a hollow loaf of bread?

I learned all this and more during a visit to the Carlsbad Historical Society‘s museum, which occupies the old Shipley-Magee House at 258 Beech Avenue.

Walking through rooms filled with fascinating exhibits, I discovered several displays that celebrate and remember Carlsbad’s famous Victorian restaurant.

Should you visit the museum, you’ll find a glass display case that contains an elegant Twin Inns guest register. And examples of the Blue Willow pattern china that diners might remember. And you’ll see old photos of the architecturally amazing building and some very beautiful artwork.

Photographs I’ve taken of Carlsbad’s landmark Twin Inns building can be found 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!

A major Hollywood star’s connection to the Gaslamp.

To Kill a Mockingbird. Moby Dick. The Omen. Cape Fear. Roman Holiday. Twelve O’Clock High. The Boys from Brazil. The Guns of Navarone. Spellbound. The Yearling. Gentleman’s Agreement. On the Beach. The Snows of Kilimanjaro.

Gregory Peck was one of Hollywood’s very biggest stars.

In 1962 he won the Academy Award for Best Actor. During his film career, he received five Best Actor nominations.

Gregory Peck was born in La Jolla. He attended San Diego High School and San Diego State University (then called San Diego State Teacher’s College).

His father, Gregory Pearl Peck, was a chemist and pharmacist–who worked in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Market Street.

The McGurck Block, 1887.

From 1903 to 1984, the Ferris and Ferris Drug Store occupied this building. For a long time it was San Diego’s only all-night drug store and, for a period of time, actor Gregory Peck’s father worked as the night druggist. The building was also used as a post office and as a ticket booth for the Coronado Ferry. The upper rooms of this three-story Italiante [sic] Revival building were used for rented rooms and became known as the Hotel Monroe in 1929.

Gregory Peck with his father, from Photoplay (1945). Public domain photo from Wikimedia Commons.

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 cool Chameleon Jump Suit at UCSD library!

Check out what I discovered today while wandering inside UC San Diego’s Geisel Library!

The very cool Chameleon Jump Suit!

The life-size figure in scaly green body armor was modeled after the time-traveling character in a popular 1998 computer game. “The Journeyman Project 3: Legacy of Time” was entertaining software created by Presto Studios, a company founded by UCSD alumni. You can read more about it here!

Even though I never played that particular computer game, I know a number of my readers love Comic-Con and popular culture, so I thought I’d share these photographs for everyone’s enjoyment!

I’m taking Comic-Con week off from work again this year, so stay tuned for lots of cool photos during 2022 San Diego Comic-Con coming up in July!

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!

Frankenstein monster and his bride invade City Heights!

The terrifying Frankenstein monster and his bride have invaded City Heights!

The rampaging pair are frequently spotted near University Avenue, in the alley just east of the North Park Car Wash.

This graffiti version of classic Hollywood monsters was painted by Ground Floor Murals, the artists who’ve created San Diego Padres players murals all around the city.

Keep your eyes open! Be careful which alley you walk down, because you might encounter the fierce bride of Frankenstein and her monstrous groom!

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!

Unexpected movie star in the Gaslamp Quarter!

San Diego’s historic Gaslamp Quarter has attracted celebrities from all around the world, particularly during big international events like Comic-Con. But did you know there’s one movie star that calls the Gaslamp home?

Walk down Fifth Avenue past the 7-Eleven and you’ve spotted a “movie star” that has appeared in two films. The convenience store occupies the 1930 Manila Cafe building, which was used as a “backdrop for scenes in the movies In God We Trust, with Marty Feldman, and Writer’s Block, with Morgan Fairchild.” That’s what a corroded historical marker by the 7-Eleven’s front door reads!

According to this article, the old Manila Café building has been occupied by a variety of restaurants over the years, and by a billiard hall during World War II. In 2014 the exterior was renovated, but the roof with its red Spanish tiles and Asian contours, and the building’s distinctive upper story, haven’t changed.

Have you watched either movie? Have you spotted San Diego’s “famous” Manila Cafe building in the background?

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!

Del Mar history in a pocket park.

A pocket park near the corner of Camino Del Mar and 15th Street features a series of banners that illustrate local history.

Pedestrians coming down the sidewalk have the opportunity to rest and view photos from Del Mar’s past in this quiet nook near L’Auberge Del Mar, across 15th Street from Stratford Square’s distinctive Tudor style building.

Last weekend I enjoyed a look at these fascinating historical images and descriptions, which are provided by the Del Mar Historical Society. I took photographs of the banners, moving from left to right.

Then I spotted a friendly sea lion perched on a nearby bench!

To learn more about Del Mar’s history, including how the North County beach town got its name from a once-popular poem titled “The Fight for Paso Del Mar”, check out this website!

The history of Del Mar begins in 1885 with the new California Southern Railroad, connecting Los Angeles to San Diego. The first hotel, opened in 1886, was Casa Del Mar. The Natatorium at the end of 10th and 11th Street featured a dance pavilion on the beach and a large saltwater swimming pool.
A 1000 foot pier was built in 1912 near the end of 15th Street. When it became too damaged by the passage of time and many storms, it was demolished in 1959 by the Navy’s Underwater Demolition Team!
The Hotel Del Mar (originally called the Stratford Inn) attracted the rich and famous after Bing Crosby built the Del Mar Racetrack in 1937. Parties featured entertainers such as Bob Hope, Al Jolson and Danny Thomas. Frequent guests included Buster Keaton, Mickey Rooney, Betty Grable, Lucille Ball, Jimmy Durante and many others.
Photos of celebrities at the Del Mar Racetrack, including Ava Gardner, Ronald Reagan, J. Edgar Hoover, Cary Grant and Red Skelton.
The Stratford Inn opened in 1909 and attracted Hollywood’s silent film stars. It was finally demolished in 1967. The posh L’Auberge Del Mar, which stands on the site now, was featured on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
This is Sally the Sea Lion!

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!

Colorful banners celebrate Italian Americans.

Jim Croce.
Jim Croce.

Occasionally, over the years, I’ve shared photographs of colorful banners hung from street lamps in Little Italy. Many can be found along India Street. Most celebrate famous Italian Americans.

The face you see might be of a popular musician, or an Oscar winner, or an inventor, or a Major League Baseball player, or a religious leader, or a powerful politician or businessman . . . you get the idea.

During walks through Little Italy in the past few weeks I noticed many banners that I hadn’t photographed yet.

In no particular order, here they are:

Mother Cabrini.
Mother Cabrini.

Bruce Springsteen.
Bruce Springsteen.

Jerry Lewis and Frank Busalacchi (San Diego restauranteur).
Jerry Lewis and Frank Busalacchi (San Diego restauranteur).

Vito Marcantonio.
Vito Marcantonio.

Fiorello La Guardia.
Fiorello La Guardia.

Louis Prima.
Louis Prima.

Dana Reeve.
Dana Reeve.

Al Pacino.
Al Pacino.

Francis Ford Coppola.
Francis Ford Coppola.

Jimmy Durante.
Jimmy Durante.

Giada De Laurentiis.
Giada De Laurentiis.

Joe Pass.
Joe Pass.

Russ Columbo.
Russ Columbo.

Robert Mondavi.
Robert Mondavi.

Jennifer Capriati.
Jennifer Capriati.

Roger Enrico.
Roger Enrico.

Ernest and Julio Gallo.
Ernest and Julio Gallo.

Frank Capra.
Frank Capra.

Carlo Vinci.
Carlo Vinci.

Dean Martin.
Dean Martin.

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!