Sea Grant California exhibit at the Dockside Market.

These friendly people with Sea Grant California showed me all sorts of fascinating creatures that reside off our coast! They encourage using locally sourced food.
These friendly people with Sea Grant California showed me all sorts of fascinating creatures that thrive off our coast! They encourage using locally sourced food.

During a walk last weekend, I headed out onto the pier just north of Seaport Village where the ever-growing Tuna Harbor Dockside Market is held on Saturday mornings. In addition to the local fishermen selling a wide variety of freshly caught seafood, I noticed one table with an interesting exhibit. Folks were demonstrating a few of the many different sea creatures that can be caught off San Diego’s coast.

I learned this display was created by Sea Grant California, an organization that connects government agencies, California universities, nonprofit organizations, local businesses and residents in our coastal community. Their mission is to conduct impartial research, disseminate knowledge, encourage best practices for environmental stewardship and optimize sustainable economic development.

Lots of people on the pier were checking out the live marine creatures on display, and learning which species are most common in the Pacific Ocean off our coast. I was told that most of San Diego’s commercial fishermen are conscientious and highly responsible. There are about 131 commercial fishing vessels licensed in the county. Many are based in Tuna Harbor, which occupies a picturesque stretch of San Diego’s Embarcadero.

In addition, I learned that the Port of San Diego is testing an aquaculture project at the end of one of Tuna Harbor’s docks. The port’s Oyster Nursery Research Project is part of an expanding effort to try out new Blue Economy technologies in San Diego Bay. The concept of a Blue Economy is to use innovative methods to maximize resources that are locally available in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way.

Very cool!

Fresh locally caught fish on ice for sale at San Diego's Tuna Harbor Dockside Market.
Fresh locally caught fish on ice for sale at San Diego’s Tuna Harbor Dockside Market.
What's for dinner?
What’s for dinner?

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 golden Christmas present on Broadway Pier.

A golden Christmas present stands at the foot of Broadway Pier. It’s an enormous holiday gift for all of San Diego!

The cheerful structure is made of shiny gold disks and tiny lights. With a bright ribbon of red on top.

Do you see the full moon?

Early this morning I circled the magical present, then stood inside it while taking 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!

Sculpted faces of Greatest Generation at night.

A crew member of U.S.S. San Diego, representing all United States sailors who served their country during World War II.
Sculpted face of a crew member of the U.S.S. San Diego, representing all United States sailors who served their country during World War II.

Yesterday evening, after dark, I walked along the Embarcadero. When I arrived at the Greatest Generation Walk, I paused to gaze at the various illuminated memorials and monuments. I was struck at how light reflected from the bronze figures of military heroes, highlighting their expressive faces.

I took many photos of those faces. I kept my flash off. Some of the faces were insufficiently lit for my camera, but the photographs you see here, of mostly ordinary people courageously serving our country–primarily in World War II–came out quite well. I sharpened the images a bit, but that’s all.

The first photo was taken at the U.S.S. San Diego (CL-53) Memorial, created by artists Eugene Daub and Louis Quaintance.

The next seven photographs were taken at the National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military, created by artists Eugene Daub and Steven Whyte.

The next three photographs were taken at the Homecoming sculpture, created by artist Stanley Bleifeld.

The final two photographs were taken at the Aircraft Carrier Memorial, which was created by artists T.J. Dixon and James Nelson.

Bob Hope as he appeared in the 1940s, entertaining the troops on a USO tour.
Bob Hope as he appeared in the 1940s, entertaining the troops on a USO tour.
A World War II Marine Corps Sergeant depicted as a patient from the 44th Field Hospital.
A World War II Marine Corps Sergeant depicted as a patient from the 44th Field Hospital.
A World War II naval aviator.
A World War II naval aviator.
A Korean War sailor.
A Korean War sailor.
World War II Navy Machinist Mate John Ibe, who survived the loss of the USS St. Lo during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.
World War II Navy Machinist Mate John Ibe, who survived the loss of the USS St. Lo during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.
Korean War Private from the 45th Infantry Division.
Korean War Private from the 45th Infantry Division.
A World War II fighter pilot. One of the Tuskegee Airmen.
A World War II fighter pilot. One of the Tuskegee Airmen.
A sailor embraces his wife upon his return from a deployment far from home.
A sailor embraces his wife upon his return from a deployment far from home.
A supportive wife hugs her sailor husband.
A supportive wife hugs her sailor husband.
Love endures.
Love endures.
A sailor who serves aboard an aircraft carrier.
A sailor who serves aboard an aircraft carrier.
A naval aviator who flies from an aircraft carrier.
A naval aviator who flies from an aircraft carrier.

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!

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Ships of every type converge on the Embarcadero.

A sailboat glides between beautiful yacht America docked at the Maritime Museum of San Diego and the shining downtown skyline.
A sailboat glides between beautiful yacht America docked at the Maritime Museum of San Diego and the shining downtown skyline.

Ships are like small islands of human activity. So it’s interesting when a variety of different ships, each serving a unique function, converge and dock in one place.

Yesterday evening many different ships were huddled together on the Embarcadero. There were the usual museum ships and harbor tour ships that call San Diego their home. I also saw: the enormous Disney Wonder cruise ship; The World, which is the largest residential yacht on the planet, containing 165 apartments; the Coast Guard cutter Stratton, which recently offloaded around 50,000 pounds of cocaine and heroin intercepted at sea; and the Maersk Launcher, which assisted in the drug operation.

I walked to the end of Navy Pier and watched different vessels come and go, as the sun set.

The sails of Star of India rise beyond one cathead of HMS Surprise.
The sails of Star of India rise beyond one cathead of HMS Surprise.
Late sun through the colored glass at Carnitas Snack Shack on the very busy Embarcadero.
Late sun through the colored glass at Carnitas’ Snack Shack on the very busy Embarcadero.
The World and the Disney Wonder at dock in San Diego.
The World and the Disney Wonder at dock in San Diego.
The illegal drug intercepting Coast Guard cutter Stratton is docked at the Broadway Pier next to the San Diego Festival of Beer.
The illegal drug intercepting Coast Guard cutter Stratton is docked at the Broadway Pier next to the San Diego Festival of Beer.
A bustle of activity seen from Navy Pier. The Spirit of San Diego harbor tour ship and a bus converge near parked cars.
A bustle of activity seen from Navy Pier. The Spirit of San Diego harbor tour ship and a bus converge near parked cars.
The Maersk Launcher at anchor in San Diego Bay.
The Maersk Launcher at anchor in San Diego Bay.
A photo of The World and Disney Wonder as sunset approaches in San Diego.
A photo of The World and Disney Wonder beyond the Port Pavilion as sunset approaches in San Diego.
Late sunlight on shining downtown buildings.
Late sunlight on shining downtown buildings.
The Disney Wonder backs away from the B Street Pier as it departs on another cruise. Many ships and boats cross paths on San Diego Bay.
The Disney Wonder backs away from the B Street Pier as it departs on another cruise. Many ships and boats cross paths on San Diego Bay.

Yesterday evening I posted photos of the amazing sunrise over Balboa Park on my Beautiful Balboa Park website. Follow the link if you’d like to see them!

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 share and enjoy!

World’s top sand sculptors create fantastic art!

Amazing works of art are being created by the world's top sand sculptors at the 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge in San Diego!
Amazing works of art are being created by the world’s top sand sculptors at the 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge in San Diego!

This morning I headed to the 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge. Here are photographs of ten amazing pieces of art that were being worked on by some of the world’s top sand sculptors. These amazing artists have won numerous sand sculpting championships. It’s easy to see why!

The theme this year is Now and Then. The sculptures all had something to say about the passage of time. I saw youth and old age. I saw glimpses of eternity. I saw essential human beauty: profound, elegant, alive. Carved in mere sand.

If you want to be awestruck, go see these sculptures before time (and a broom) sweeps them away. They’re down on the Broadway Pier inside the Port Pavilion through Labor Day.

Susanne Ruseler, sand artist from the Netherlands, works on a fine sculpture that juxtaposes youth and old age.
Susanne Ruseler, top sand artist from the Netherlands, works on a fine sculpture that juxtaposes youth and old age.
Bringing a profound vision to life using compacted sand and a few simple tools.
Bringing a profound vision to life using compacted sand and a few simple tools.
A careful touch to bring out inner feeling.
A careful touch to bring out inner feeling.
World Master sand sculptor Ilya Filimontsev from Moscow, Russia creates a exquisite work of art. He won the U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge in 2016.
Master sand sculptor Ilya Filimontsev from Moscow, Russia creates an exquisite work of art. He won the U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge in 2016.
World Master sand sculptor Dan Belcher from St. Louis, Missouri is creating a large, fantastic face.
Master sand sculptor Dan Belcher from St. Louis, Missouri is creating an expressive, fantastic face.
Thoughtful eyes gaze at each other.
Thoughtful eyes gaze at each other.
Abram Waterman is a Sand Master from Prince Edward Island, Canada. His sculpture is amazing, too.
Abram Waterman is a Sand Master from Prince Edward Island, Canada. His sculpture is amazing, too.
Looks like circuits in silicon that have come to life.
Looks like circuits in silicon that have come to life.
Sue McGrew of Tacoma, Washington works on some monumental sand art that represents the continuum of time.
Sue McGrew of Tacoma, Washington works on some monumental sand art that represents the continuum of time.
Sue's sketchbook provides some insight into her piece. The dividing line between past, present and future is an illusion.
Sue’s sketchbook provides some insight into her piece. The dividing line between past, present and future is an illusion.
Numbers representing time whirl in the mind.
Numerals representing time whirl in the mind.
Sand Master Thomas Koet, from Melbourne, Florida, creates amazing artwork that must be seen in person to be fully appreciated.
Sand Master Thomas Koet, from Melbourne, Florida, creates amazing artwork that must be seen in person to be fully appreciated.
Another fantastic work of art at the 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge.
Another fantastic work of art at the 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge.
Rusty Croft from Carmel, California is carving an amazing horse's head made of sand.
Rusty Croft from Carmel, California is carving a fantastic horse’s head made of sand.
The horse's interior appears to be made of mechanical parts!
The sand horse’s interior appears to be made of mechanical parts!
Sand Master Fergus Mulvany from Dublin, Ireland is creating a cool sculpture that is abstract and layered.
Sand Master Fergus Mulvany from Dublin, Ireland is creating a cool sculpture that is abstract and layered.
Stepping back with shovel to have a good look.
Stepping back with shovel to have a good look. Fluid links seem to represent the flowing nature of time.
Morgan Rudluff from Santa Cruz, California is creating some great sand art representing campers gazing from a mountaintop into the distance.
Morgan Rudluff from Santa Cruz, California is creating some great sand art. It shows campers gazing from a mountaintop into the far distance. Looks to me like she’s just getting started.
Melineige Beauregard from Montreal, Canada shows what time does to even the most mighty.
Melineige Beauregard from Montreal, Canada demonstrates what time does to even the most mighty.
The most beautiful, amazing sand art on the planet right now can be found in San Diego--through Labor Day!
The most beautiful, amazing sand art on the planet right now can be found in San Diego–through Labor 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 fun photos for you to share and enjoy!

Getting ready for 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge!

Putting sand into wooden forms, preparing to make sand sculptures that will welcome visitors to the Broadway Pier!
Putting sand into wooden forms, preparing to make sand sculptures that will welcome visitors to the Broadway Pier!

Look what I spotted during my walk along the Embarcadero after work today! Preparations are underway for the big 2017 U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge which takes place this coming Labor Day Weekend!

As you can see, sand is being put into large wooden forms at the base of the Broadway Pier. I learned from a friendly guy scooping sand that the competing sculptures will actually be created inside the Broadway Pier’s Port Pavilion! (In past years they were outside, along the south edge of the nearby B Street Pier.)

I also see that this year, outside on the Broadway Pier, there will be all sorts of food, cool “dimensional art” and live music, much like the past events.

Finally, I learned that the three sand sculptures just getting started today will welcome visitors to the Broadway Pier. One sculpture will depict the USS Midway and Star of India. Another has something to do with LEGOs. A third will promote MTS, San Diego’s public transit system.

I’m getting excited! The best sand artists in the world will be here next weekend! I’m going! It will be cool to see their masterpieces!

The U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge is coming to San Diego's Broadway Pier during Labor Day Weekend!
The U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge is coming to San Diego’s Broadway Pier during Labor Day Weekend!
Meanwhile, this afternoon during my walk, I saw some folks enjoying the pier, watching two harbor cruise ships coming in from the bay.
Meanwhile, this afternoon during my walk, I saw some folks enjoying the pier, watching two harbor cruise ships coming in from the bay.
This friendly guy told me there will be three sand sculptures here at the base of the pier. The competing sand sculptures will actually be created inside the Port Pavilion this year!
This friendly guy told me there will be three sand sculptures here at the base of the pier. The competing sand sculptures will actually be created inside the Port Pavilion this year!
Quarry sand mixed with water will be compacted, and then carved into some cool sculptures during the coming week!
Quarry sand mixed with water will be compacted, and then carved here into three cool sculptures during the coming week! Stay tuned!

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 fun photos for you to share and enjoy!

Photos from Port of San Diego’s harbor tour.

We pull away from the Embarcadero aboard the Admiral Hornblower, on a special harbor tour provided by the Port of San Diego.
We pull away from the Embarcadero aboard the Admiral Hornblower, on a special harbor tour provided by the Port of San Diego.

Last Saturday I enjoyed a special boat tour of San Diego’s harbor. The free tour was created by the Port of San Diego for Maritime Month, which was actually May. (The earlier tours were so popular, an additional June date was added.) The main intention of these tours was to educate the public about the importance of San Diego Bay, and the waterfront’s many contribution’s to our local economy.

We set out on the Admiral Hornblower and checked out a number of fascinating facilities that are overseen by the Port of San Diego. The Port of San Diego manages San Diego Bay and a strip of surrounding waterfront land. Its five member cities are San Diego, National City, Chula Vista, Imperial Beach and Coronado.

According to their website “The port oversees two maritime cargo terminals, two cruise ship terminals, 20 public parks, the Harbor Police Department and the leases of hundreds of tenant and sub tenant businesses around San Diego Bay.”

Well, what exactly did we see and what did we learn?

I took a few notes, which I’ve placed in my photo captions. Let’s head out onto the water on an overcast day and see some fascinating sights!

Looking back toward the Port Pavilion on Broadway Pier. This facility can host special events or welcome cruise ships. Every cruise ship adds 2 million dollars to the San Diego economy.
Looking back toward the Port Pavilion on Broadway Pier. This facility can host special events or welcome cruise ships. Every visiting cruise ship adds 2 million dollars to the San Diego economy.
Someone enjoys recreating on San Diego Bay as we pass Tuna Harbor. Tourism and commercial fishing rely on San Diego's harbor.
Someone enjoys recreating on San Diego Bay as we pass Tuna Harbor. Tourism and commercial fishing rely on San Diego’s versatile harbor.
It's Saturday morning, so the Tuna Harbor Dockside Market is open on the I Street Pier near Seaport Village. It's the place to go if you like fresh fish.
It’s Saturday morning, so the Tuna Harbor Dockside Market is open on Fish Harbor Pier near Seaport Village. It’s the place to go if you like fresh seafood.
Now we are approaching the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal. Most people associate it with Dole ships that bring in about 185 million bananas and other fruit each month!
Now we are approaching the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal. Most people associate it with those big yellow Dole ships that bring in about 185 million bananas and other fruit each month!
The Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal is to undergo modernization. Some transit sheds will be removed, to create more flexible laydown space.
The Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal is to undergo modernization. Some transit sheds will be removed, to create more flexible laydown space.
These are windmill tower components.
These are windmill tower components.
This part of the facility is used for transferring cement between ship and shore.
This part of the facility is used for transferring cement between ship and shore.
This 1,800-ton-per-hour bulk loader handles soda ash, bauxite and fertilizer exports.
This 1,800-ton-per-hour bulk loader handles soda ash, bauxite and fertilizer exports.
Docked south of the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, beside the Cesar Chavez Park pier, are the vessels of Pacific Tugboat Service.
Docked south of the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, beside the Cesar Chavez Park pier, are the vessels of Pacific Tugboat Service.
Near the east end of the San Diego–Coronado Bridge is the first of three big shipyards--Continental Maritime of San Diego.
Near the east end of the San Diego–Coronado Bridge is the first of three big shipyards–Continental Maritime of San Diego.
Navy ships are undergoing repairs and modernization. The white plastic wrap prevents paint particles from entering the environment.
Navy ships are undergoing repairs and modernization. The white plastic wrap prevents paint particles from entering the environment.
The next shipyard as we head south is BAE Systems. They also provide repair and modernization services. This huge ship in one of two dry docks is completely concealed!
The next shipyard as we head south is BAE Systems. They also provide repair and modernization services. This huge ship in one of two dry docks is completely concealed!
This is a new type of stealth Navy ship--a guided missile Zumwalt-class destroyer. DDG-1000 is the first of its class. Its radar image is similar to that of a fishing boat.
This is a new type of stealth Navy ship–a guided missile Zumwalt-class destroyer. DDG-1000 is the first of its class. Its radar image is similar to that of a fishing boat.
Another vessel is being worked on at the BAE Systems San Diego shipyard. You can see floating oil spill containment booms in many of these photos.
Another vessel is being worked on at the BAE Systems San Diego shipyard. You can see floating oil spill containment booms in many of these photos.
Finally we are nearing the General Dynamics NASSCO shipyard. Ships are built here. It is the largest full service shipyard on the West Coast.
Finally we are nearing the General Dynamics NASSCO shipyard. New ships are built here. It is the largest full service shipyard on the West Coast.
It's an overcast "June Gloom" late morning on San Diego Bay.
It’s an overcast “June Gloom” late morning on San Diego Bay.
As we continue into the South Bay, we see a large ship is being moved away from the shore by tugboat.
As we continue into the South Bay, we see a large ship is being moved away from the shore by tugboat.
It's the Palmetto State, a fuel-efficient ECO Class tanker that was built at the NASSCO shipyard.
It’s the Palmetto State, a fuel-efficient ECO Class tanker that was built at the NASSCO shipyard.
Now we are beginning to pass Naval Base San Diego--what some refer to as 32nd Street Naval Station. It is the principal homeport of the U. S. Navy's Pacific Fleet.
Now we are beginning to pass Naval Base San Diego–what some refer to as 32nd Street Naval Station. It is the principal homeport of the U. S. Navy’s Pacific Fleet.
This is the USS Essex (LHD-2), a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship.
This is the USS Essex (LHD-2), a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship.
San Diego is home to these three Avenger-class mine countermeasures ships.
San Diego is home to these three Avenger-class mine countermeasures ships.
The unusual white vessel is a barracks barge--where a crew lives while their Navy ship is undergoing major repairs.
The unusual white vessel is a barracks barge–where a crew lives while their Navy ship is undergoing major repairs.
The USS Makin Island (LHD 8) returned from deployment recently. The gold anchors indicate this ship has earned the Navy's Retention Excellence Award.
The USS Makin Island (LHD 8) returned from deployment recently. The gold anchors indicate this ship has earned the Navy’s Retention Excellence Award.
Now we are past the Naval base and approaching the National City Marine Terminal.
Now we are past the Naval base and approaching the National City Marine Terminal.
I see lots of cars. If you own an automobile imported from Japan or South Korea, there a good chance it arrived here.
I see lots of cars. If you own an automobile imported from Japan or South Korea, there a good chance it arrived here.
Vehicles of all type arrive here by huge roll-on/roll-off (RORO) ships, including trucks and tractors.
Vehicles of all type arrive here by huge roll-on/roll-off (RORO) ships, including trucks and tractors.
Longshoremen drive hundreds of new vehicles off the ships. Warehouses nearby are used to install accessories. White wraps on cars protect them from stuff like seagull poop!
Longshoremen drive hundreds of new vehicles off the ships. Warehouses nearby are used to install accessories. White wraps on cars protect them from dirty stuff like seagull poop! Some ospreys have nests atop those high lampposts.
These totaled cars arrived from Hawaii! They're headed to San Diego salvage yards.
These totaled cars arrived from Hawaii! They’re headed to San Diego salvage yards.
Half of the new cars are then sent to their destination by train, the other half by truck. This facility accommodates super long freight trains--120 cars long!
Half of the new cars are sent to their final destination by train, the other half by truck. This facility accommodates super long freight trains–120 cars long!
We've turned about and have headed back to the North Embarcadero. Before we dock, we check out a superyacht moored in the middle of San Diego Bay.
We’ve turned about and have headed back to the North Embarcadero. Before we dock, we check out a superyacht temporarily moored in the middle of San Diego Bay.
This is the Attessa IV, owned by Dennis R. Washington, 76th wealthiest person in the United States! The Port of San Diego accommodates all sorts of ships!
This is the Attessa IV, owned by Dennis R. Washington, 76th wealthiest person in the United States! The Port of San Diego accommodates all sorts of ships!

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 fun photos for you to share and enjoy!