Plaque at Cabrillo honors National Parks hero.

A beautiful bronze plaque near the entrance of the Cabrillo National Monument Visitor Center honors Stephen Tyng Mather.

It reads:

STEPHEN TYNG MATHER

JULY.4.1867. JAN:22.1930.

HE LAID THE FOUNDATION OF THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEFINING AND ESTABLISHING THE POLICIES UNDER WHICH ITS AREAS SHALL BE DEVELOPED AND CONSERVED UNIMPAIRED FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS. THERE WILL NEVER COME AN END TO THE GOOD THAT HE HAS DONE.

You can learn more about Stephen Mather and how he promoted the creation of the National Park Service and became its first director here.

The Wikipedia page states: “In 1932, his family and friends established the Stephen Mather Memorial Fund, which commissioned numerous bronze plaques honoring Mather’s accomplishments and installed them in national park units.

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 beautiful Torrey pines of Cabrillo.

The Old Point Loma Lighthouse at Cabrillo National Monument is picturesque by itself. But the historic 1855 lighthouse, rising into the sky near the end of Point Loma, seems to belong in a painting when several rare Torrey pines that grow nearby are framed with it.

The lighthouse and tall windswept trees seem to belong together.

I did my best to capture the extraordinary beauty with my small camera during a visit today.

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!

OB Wonderland in Fantasy Seascape Children’s Mural!

The historic OB Wonderland is depicted in a happy Ocean Beach mural that was painted by kids back in 2014.

Wonderland was San Diego’s very first amusement park, operating in Ocean Beach from 1913 to 1916. Read more about this short-lived beachfront attraction here.

The children’s mural also features whales, dolphins, sharks, seahorses, eels, jellyfish, snails, parrots, pelicans and mermaids! And hearts and sunken treasure! And the OB Pier! And the Old Point Loma Lighthouse! And Hodad’s! And a whole lot more!

Last weekend I took the following photos of the Fantasy Seascape Children’s Mural.

The faded mural is painted on a long fence by Sunset Gas and Market, at the corner of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard and Point Loma Avenue.

Fantasy Seascape Children’s Mural. Designed and provided to the community by Young At Art Children’s Creative Center . . . Inspiring, Encouraging and Providing Opportunities in Art to All Children.

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!

Mural of diverse women in a canoe.

A beautiful, thought-provoking mural was painted earlier this year on Sunset Cliffs Boulevard. I saw it last weekend on the parking lot wall of Little Lion Cafe. The mural, I learned, was painted by Aaron Glasson, an artist who lives in Ocean Beach just a few blocks away.

Next to the mural I found an article printed in the Point Loma-OB Monthly concerning the artwork and its creation. You can read the article online here. The four women in the canoe form a racially diverse group. If there’s a basic message in the mural it’s that Ocean Beach is a diverse and welcoming community.

The mural is located just north of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park. Should you visit this scenic coastal stretch of Point Loma, keep your eyes peeled for the Little Lion Cafe!

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!

An amazing walk along Sunset Cliffs!

One of San Diego’s most amazing, scenic walks is along Sunset Cliffs in Point Loma.

Yesterday I walked along the length of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, which stretches for about 1.5 miles beside the Pacific Ocean. I started near the intersection of Sunset Cliffs Boulevard and Adair Street and headed south to Ladera Street, where there’s a popular beach, nature trails and stairs down to a small cave and rocky tide pools.

The August summer day was perfect for a long walk. The sun didn’t break through the coastal marine layer until the very end of my adventure, and the sea breeze was pleasantly cool.

Views of the Pacific Ocean crashing against the steep, rugged cliffs seemed endless. The mostly dirt Coastal Trail I followed wound above the high eroded bluffs, past a few pocket beaches and past sea caves and picturesque sandstone arches.

In places the cliffs have collapsed from the constant powerful action of tides and incoming waves. Many signs warn people away from the edge of the unstable cliffs.

I met a painter. I met friendly lifeguards training for cliff rescues. I saw benches along the path dedicated to lost loved ones and sunsets. Many were standing and sitting at the ocean’s edge, peering at eternity with silent wonder.

As you can see from my photographs, nature’s hand creates beauty everywhere it moves.

If you like to stretch your legs and spirit, and you happen to be in San Diego, it’s likely you’ll love this walk, too.

Looking north for a moment. You can see the Ocean Beach pier in the distance.

As I walked along, I met Scotty Painta. He paints beautiful small scenes from Sunset Cliffs. We had a friendly chat and my day was enriched.

I met three lifeguards. They had slender ropes dangling down an almost vertical bluff. They were practicing cliff rescues. Jake told me a little about what they do. Thank you.

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 phone or 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!

To enjoy future posts, you can also “like” Cool San Diego Sights on Facebook or follow me on Twitter.

Your Mother is Always With You, at Sunset Cliffs.

I walked along Sunset Cliffs in Point Loma today.

As I moved along the edge of the Pacific Ocean, looking out at the horizon from atop the high sandstone bluffs, the corner of my eye was caught by something colorful and bright. It was a bench beside the path overlooking the water.

The bench is very special, as you can see from my photos.

I found flowers, memories, and a poem written by Deborah R. Culver titled Your Mother Is Always With You. Read the powerful but simple words.

I will share photographs from my amazing walk along Sunset Cliffs shortly. I’m getting them ready right now.

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!

Hotel San Diego sign at Liberty Station.

If you’ve ever entered Liberty Station by turning down Dewey Road from Rosecrans Street, you might’ve glimpsed a very unusual sight. On the left, beyond some trees, an enormous sign is lying on the ground!

Last weekend I walked down a footpath behind Officer’s Quarters D of the old Naval Training Center San Diego for a better look. Quarters D until recently was the home of SCOUT. It is now home of Banyan Tree Educational Services.

The huge sign lying strangely on the ground once belonged to the Hotel San Diego. For many decades the neon sign was an iconic sight on Broadway in downtown San Diego. The large hotel was demolished in 2006 to make way for a new federal courthouse.

I myself stayed in the hotel a little over twenty years ago, when I moved to San Diego, and I remember seeing this landmark sign on the historic building.

The Hotel San Diego was built in 1914 by John D. Spreckels to accommodate visitors arriving for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition in Balboa Park. Learn more about it and see historical photos here.

Why is this large, rusting sign now lying on some grass at Liberty Station? It was preserved with the intention of restoring it for display in the garden behind Officer’s Quarters D. Read more about that 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!

Hidden public art on a Liberty Station rooftop!

Very few know of this “hidden” public artwork in Point Loma. It can be found on a building’s rooftop at Liberty Station.

In the next photograph you can see green stairs climbing the side of the New Americans Museum. During all of my visits to Liberty Station, I’ve never seen a single person going up them. I myself had thought these stairs to the building’s roof were out of bounds to the public.

Not so!

Head on up, push open the swinging gate, and take a look!

The unique rooftop artwork is composed of colorfully painted skateboards. Appropriately titled Rolling It Forward, the installation was created in 2018 by local artist Jeremy Nuttall of Poway, California. The sculpture, according to a sign represents a boat and rolling waves made entirely of community-painted skateboard decks. It builds on the concept of “pay it forward,” and it required the support and involvement of the community…

The skateboards that compose Rolling It Forward have become weathered by several seasons of rain and sunshine. They are cracked and faded. They are rolling forward through time.

But the creative, often crazy images endure!

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 phone or 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!

To enjoy future posts, you can also “like” Cool San Diego Sights on Facebook or follow me on Twitter.

Scenes from La Jolla Playhouse’s POP-UP WOW!

This evening I watched a stirring performance. I and many others enjoyed the La Jolla Playhouse’s POP-UP WOW event at Liberty Station.

What did I see?

I saw soulful singing and dancing that stems from a shared history of suffering and endurance.

I saw joy that rises from the heart–a triumph of the spirit.

I saw how bubbles are like aspects of life–and like life itself. Mysterious, beautiful, soaring . . . short-lived. A beginning and an ending. Like memories.

I, too, wondered why we have an impulse to chase bubbles.

I saw a fable about a giant who wanted power over everything.

Until he saw the beauty of bubbles and learned wisdom.

I saw individuals repeatedly asking “Can I?”

They make one clumsy attempt after another, slowly gaining ability, gaining confidence, until they venture out into this sometimes scary world.

Meeting others, overcoming their fear, the question becomes “Can WE?”

What I observed was life.

You can watch it tomorrow if you’d like, too. Click here to learn about the Sunday performances. It’s free!

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!

That kinetic sculpture on the Nimitz median.

Whenever I’ve driven down Nimitz Boulevard south of West Point Loma Boulevard I’ve wondered about a kinetic sculpture that rises from the street’s median.

Yesterday morning I headed to Point Loma for a better look.

The shining sculpture, titled Taiji, was created by Encinitas artist Jeffery Laudenslager. Like a silent living thing, the public art moves and changes its shape in even the slightest breeze.

Taiji was placed on the median by the Point Loma Association in 2017. Learn more about the association and their work to beautify Point Loma here.

According to the artist, Taiji is based on the Yin and Yang principle. You might say all of his kinetic pieces display a certain symmetry, considering how perfectly balanced they are.

You can see two more Jeffery Laudenslager pieces that I’ve photographed around San Diego here and here.

(It was early Saturday morning and traffic was extremely light. I was super careful that no cars were coming when I momentarily crossed the usually busy street to take a few photos!)

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!