Two more colorful murals in La Mesa!

During my visit to La Mesa for Oktoberfest, I photographed two colorful murals that I hadn’t seen or recorded during prior walks.

The first three photos were taken at Public Square Coffee House. I believe this amazing mural overlooking La Mesa Boulevard is by prolific San Diego graffiti artist Sake (@sakeonedesign).

The seahorse mural in the rear of Sheldon’s Service Station was painted back in 2017 by Beth Emmerich (@bethemmerich).

Enjoy!

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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Amusing photos from an Oceanside walk!

ON THIS SITE IN 1897 NOTHING HAPPENED. A funny plaque on the Inner World Smoke Shop building.

This morning I took the first scheduled Coaster train up to Oceanside. I wanted to watch the annual Annual Labor Day Oceanside Pier Swim, but it was already over when I arrived. Oops!

But I did go on a long random walk and discovered a bunch of cool stuff!

First off, enjoy this collection of amusing photos. It appears many people in Oceanside have a good sense of humor!

I spotted these as I sauntered down various sidewalks…

Only COOL people allowed. A humorous COVID-19 sign.
It seems even the chef at Mary’s Family Restaurant has to wait in line.
Yellow hand seats at Alfredo’s Mexican Food.
Beer speaks. People mumble. Here’s lookin’ atcha, Oceanside!
Is he heading for Trestles? Malibu? The Jetties?
Beware the hammerhead shark at the entrance to Sandy Toes Gift Store. That’s one big mouth!
A slice of metal pie is included in the patio fence at Carmine’s Pizza.
A giant rooster guards the entrance to Carrillo Pottery.
A funny face painted on a window at Knuckleheads Barbershop.
O’side or No Side. Humorous graphic at the Real Surf Shop, on the rear of their old Chevrolet Apache.

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!

More fun art in an Escondido alley!

The alley in Escondido that I visited a couple weekends ago, where I found many Esco Alley Art murals and alley cats painted on dumpsters, contains even more fun artwork!

Take a look!

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!

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!

Street art spotted walking the Convoy District.

Yesterday I walked along many blocks of Convoy Street in Kearny Mesa. I was on a mission to check out the new Yu Darvish mural that is being painted this week. See those photos here!

As I walked through the heart of the Convoy District, I saw a few bits of “street art” that I photographed.

The Convoy District describes itself “as the commercial and cultural heart for San Diego’s 450,000+ member Asian & Pacific Islander communities.” It is one of several areas in San Diego that has attracted a sizable Asian population.

There are numerous eateries in the strip malls that line Convoy Street. Restaurants offer Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Thai food, not to mention Hawaiian, Italian and lots of Mexican.

I remember frequenting an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet back in the 80’s when I was quite a bit younger and could devour multiple platefuls!

It was wonderful to see bits of art along Convoy, but there is definitely room for much more!

Welcome to Convoy
A very colorful rooster with a beer on the side of Cross Street Chicken and Beer. At this restaurant Korean Fried Chicken meets Classic Southern Cooking. Mural by @espanagarcia_art.
A newly painted electrical box on Convoy Street. I believe this might be the result of a recent Utility Box Mural Program that partners the Asian Business Association San Diego, Convoy District, SDG&E, and Cox. It was the only decorated box I happened to see.
I passed these two lions that stand on the grass in front of Jasmine Express. It appears they used to be located elsewhere. If you know anything about them, leave a comment!

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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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!

The historical Carriage Works building downtown.

There’s an unusual old building in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter called the Carriage Works. You can find it at the corner of Fourth Avenue and G Street.

If the Carriage Works with its wide arched doorways appears different from other historical buildings in the Gaslamp, that’s because it used to be a place where San Diegans would go to purchase horse-drawn buggies and wagons!

Today the Carriage Works is home to music venues and eateries including GARAGE Kitchen + Bar, Tin Roof, and The Shout! House.

I took these photos about a month ago. You can see how outdoor dining areas were set up during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I also photographed a plaque that provides a brief description of the building’s history.

Carriage Works, 1890

Constructed to house the wholesale business of Todd and Hawley, which operated here until 1902. Their stock was purchased by Lyons Implement Company, which carried a complete line of Studebaker vehicles, including buggies and wagons. Along with Lyon, San Diego Gas & Electric, San Diego Farm and Dairy Supply, a tent and awning company and the Volunteers of America have occupied the building.

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!

Photos of Carlsbad’s grand, historic Twin Inns.

Several impressive landmark buildings can be observed during a visit to Carlsbad.

Perhaps the most prominent landmark stands at the corner of Carlsbad Boulevard (the local stretch of old Highway 101) and Carlsbad Village Drive. It’s called the Twin Inns. Look for the big blue Victorian building next to the Carlsbad gateway sign.

Approach the Twin Inns and you’ll not only be impressed by its grand architecture, but you’ll have the opportunity to view an informative plaque that relates a good deal of fascinating history.

The plaque by the front steps reads:

TWIN INNS

This Victorian structure was built in 1887 for Gerhard Schutte, whose role in the development of the town led to his being called the “Father of Carlsbad.” Schutte and partners Samuel Church Smith and D.D. Wadsworth founded the Carlsbad Land and Mineral Water Company and had as their vision “a town of small farms and gracious homes.” To that end they bought 400 prime acres at $40 per acre for development as a community. They laid out a townsite, lined roads with eucalyptus seedlings, and named the streets. This property was converted to the Twin Inns Restaurant circa 1917 by Whiting and Reed and was purchased by Ed and Neva Kentner in 1919. It was named the Twin Inns since the building was identical to the nearby Wadsworth home, also used as an inn. The building was extensively remodeled with a large octagonal dining room added in 1922. The Twin Inns was a popular summer dining area frequented by many of the Hollywood set after a day at the races and later figured prominently in Carlsbad’s history serving as the site of the first City Council meeting and deliberations on the city’s incorporation. The building was also famous for its fried chicken dinners, which were promoted by large plaster chickens out front. After 60 years as a family business, the Twin Inns was sold in 1984 and became part of the Village Faire Shopping Center.

COURTESY OF THE CARLSBAD HISTORIC PRESERVATION COMMISSION

On either side of the steps you’ll find two decorative signs…

The Twin Inns – Famous Chicken Dinners
Built by Alonzo Culver for Gerhard Schutte in 1887.
The north side of the Twin Inns.
The south side of the Twin Inns. You can see a sign for one small business that presently occupies the building, Sun Diego Boardshop.
The southeast corner of the Twin Inns. This part of the historic building is now used by Pedego Electric Bikes.

I was told by a friendly employee of Pedego Electric Bikes that the above door, on the building’s east side, used to be an entrance to a speakeasy back during Prohibition!

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!

Two surfers, a burger and fries!

Today I rode the Coaster train from San Diego up the coast for a relaxing holiday adventure. I did a lot of walking in both Carlsbad and Oceanside, and took lots of photographs. Stay tuned!

I hadn’t eaten breakfast, so around noon, as I walked north into Oceanside via South Coast Highway, a burger and fries was sounding good. Particularly from Angelo’s Burgers, whose hand cut fries are super yummy. (Their huge burgers are great, too!)

As I neared Angelo’s I spied a surfing mural on the side of their building that I’ve always wanted to photograph.

After crossing the Coast Highway north of the restaurant, I spotted a second cool surfing mural on the exterior of nearby Moose Lodge 1325, so I snapped a photo of that one, too!

Surfing mural at Angelo’s Burgers by Angela Brittain, 2012. The Oceanside artist also painted the mustachioed statue holding a hamburger in front of the restaurant. (The oblong shapes that appear to be dangling surfboards in the above photo are actually shadows.)
I don’t know who painted this very cool surfing mural at Moose Lodge 1325. If you know, please leave a comment!

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!

Returning to normal after the pandemic.

Thank goodness. Life in San Diego is returning to something more like normal. As a large number of people have become vaccinated against COVID-19, the coronavirus pandemic has greatly subsided.

The virus took an unspeakably horrible toll. Lives were lost. Living was curtailed. Many were isolated. Livelihoods were decimated. The lockdowns were unprecedented. But we’re somehow getting beyond it.

In the last couple weeks I’ve taken a few photographs of signs that our city is returning to normal.

Indoor dining is back. Theaters are open or about to open. Stadiums are once again full. Museums and attractions are mostly open. More and more commercial planes are landing at San Diego International Airport. Traffic patterns are returning. Help Wanted signs are now everywhere.

One thing I really notice as I walk around is that tourists are traveling once again to sunny San Diego.

The new normal in the Gaslamp Quarter includes open-air dining.
Visitors to the Maritime Museum of San Diego descend into the USS Dolphin submarine.
Old Town Trolley Tours is starting to get busy again, and these relaxing tour guides smiled for my camera!
The movies are back. I’m anxious to see Black Widow which opens next week!
Most restaurants–the ones that survived the pandemic–are open for indoor dining…and they’re hiring!
Two “smiles” at Fiesta de Reyes are symbolic of the gradual transition back to normal times.
Tourists check out pottery at El Centro Artesano in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
A random fun photo that I took today. These fireplace “fire starters” are made using leftover wax at Toby’s Candle & Soap Shop in Old Town.
People are out and about, so downtown sidewalks must be kept clean!
The historic Balboa Theatre will be reopening in early August!

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!