A green February walk at Mission Trails.

Today was the perfect day for a walk at Mission Trails Regional Park.

It’s February. The sun was out . . . a pleasant breeze . . . temperature low 70’s.

The trails were almost dry after our recent winter rain. The footing was neither muddy nor dusty.

Best of all: plenty of green!

Most of the year the native vegetation covering San Diego’s undeveloped landscape is dry and drab. But in the spring or after winter storms there’s a transformation. Today, the grass near much of the trail was bright green!

My walk started from the paved Father Junipero Serra Trail at the trailhead south of the Kumeyaay Lake Campground. I headed up the Kwaay Paay East Trail, which skirts private residential property before sharply turning and commencing a fairly steep climb. At a junction with the main Kwaay Paay Peak Trail, I turned back down toward the original trailhead, to complete a loop that’s a little less than one mile long.

Here’s a trail map.

I’ve called this a “walk” even through it’s really a wilderness hike. I’d say in places the hike is moderately difficult. You can see in my photos what the trail is like.

You can also see how beautiful it is!

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Swinging Friar at Chula Vista’s Vogue Theater!

San Diego Padres mascot the Swinging Friar is hanging out in Chula Vista!

You can find him on a construction wall in front of the historic Vogue Theater, which is now undergoing its big renovation. The Swinging Friar was painted by Ground Floor Murals.

The temporary wall includes other bits of street art, including a couple more images inspired by the San Diego Padres.

Around the corner, a cool Manny Machado mural is painted on the old theater’s north side. See that mural by clicking here.

Go Pads! World Series this season for sure!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Dwarf dinosaur “glarfs” restored in Bonita!

Two dwarf dinosaur glarfs have been restored in Bonita!

The glarfs, named Rumbi and Rangui, now stand behind construction fencing in front of Bonita Village Shopping Center. They appear just about ready to be set free!

According to a posted letter, Rumbi the Glarf (the yellow one) was badly hurt last year. But Rumbi’s human friend Kelly has been working to make everything all better.

Several loving messages on the fence express Get Well wishes.

A nearby plaque explains a bit of glarf history. Rangui is the blue one…

RANGUI THE GLARF

Original created in 1959 by Jerry Lee Gauss

Replication by Kelly Tracy in 2006

Rangui is the original Glarf dinosaur created by Bonita’s Jerry Lee Gauss. The story of Rangui and Rumbi was told in the 2000 Bonitafest Melodrama “When Dinosaurs Roamed the Valley” in The San Diego Union-Tribune and on Channel 7/39’s “About San Diego.” Cast and audience members raised funds to rebuild Rangui.

Unfortunately, there’s a terribly tragic aspect to this otherwise wonderful story. The 15-year-old creator of the glarfs, Jerry Lee Gauss perished four years later at the age of 19 in a car accident.

According to the RoadsideAmerica website, both glarfs were made as an anniversary present for Jerry’s parents. And here’s a little more of the history.

Fully restored, children will again be able to romp on the strong backs of Rumbi and Rangui. And so a young creator’s gift of love will live on and on.

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I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

San Diego photos honor Black History Month.

An exhibit is now being readied at the San Diego History Center for Black History Month. Two museum walls will feature photographs selected from the History Center’s archives.

When I asked about this installation today, I learned that the centerpiece will be Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s visit to San Diego back in 1964. Many additional photographs concern citizens in our community who dared to advocate for equal rights.

About a third of the photos were up this afternoon. The exhibit should be completed sometime this week!

Protesting racial segregation in front of Woolworth’s storefront in downtown San Diego in 1960.

Racial equality sit-in at SDG&E in 1963.

Board of Education racial integration proponents disrupt meeting in 1968. A group of parents fought against inequalities for students of all ethnic backgrounds.

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Life touches life in Balboa Park.

Two very different lives.

A young man was passing through Balboa Park. He saw an older gentleman playing a bluesy song and decided to sketch him.

Two generations. Two separate lives, suddenly touching.

That’s part of the magic of Balboa Park.

The musician, who is exceptionally talented, is Saint James Harris Wood. He’s also an author.

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Ghostbusters capture Slimer in University Heights!

When there’s something strange in the University Heights neighborhood, who you gonna call? Ghostbusters!

Slimer was observed passing through the walls of Gnarly Girl Pizza at 2302 El Cajon Boulevard, so the original Ghostbusters crew–Egon Spengler, Ray Stantz, Winston Zeddemore and Peter Venkman–were promptly summoned. Using their proton packs, careful to not cross the radially polarized electrostatic beams, they successfully captured the hungry green ectoplasmic imp!

A weird creature that devours its own pizza head was also spotted. The pepperoni freckled monster is still at large.

This very cool art was painted last year by Alex Julian (@alexfizix). His style is unmistakable. You’ve possibly seen his comic-inspired murals elsewhere in San Diego!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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 San Diego Chinese New Year Fair!

The 40th Annual San Diego Chinese New Year Fair is being held this weekend in the Gaslamp Quarter. I swung by earlier today to take in all the excitement, culture and color!

It seems every year I go to this event it has grown larger. A big crowd had gathered today, Saturday, as the festivities began mid-morning. (It probably didn’t hurt that many Padres fans were walking through on their way to FanFest.)

I watched the joyful traditional Lion Dancing, then a couple of energetic dance performances by students from Riverview International Academy in Lakeside.

Wishes for health, peace and prosperity abounded. One of the speakers was Camille P. Dawson, the United States Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs. How impressive is that?

Enjoy some photos and imagine the atmosphere! This fun Chinese New Year event continues through the weekend!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Youth Speak Truth in San Diego.

This afternoon youth were speaking truths at the San Diego Central Library. An event presented by DREAMS+DUCATS brought together young people for a discussion panel. The subject was Journey To Impact.

Speakers told inspirational stories, sharing their personal dreams and efforts to influence a world that is largely managed by older people. The frustrations of idealistic youth were evident, as they confronted a world that often seems cold and hopelessly unchangeable.

One speaker shared her practical idea of how to make schools safer from potential shooters, and explained how that very simple idea (locking classroom doors on the inside rather than the outside) was resisted and dismissed by the powers that be. Another spoke of her experience of being homeless, and how it was very difficult to have basic needs met.

The young speakers sought to have a greater voice in government and decision-making, but felt they were ignored and not respected. To this I would say, don’t give up. Keep speaking. Hopeful idealism still lurks in the minds of many who are older.

Greet this complex world with a smile. Don’t frown upon all “grown-ups” as hostile adversaries. Life goes by very quickly. Too quickly. You’ll be one of those grown-up humans in the blink of an eye.

I happened to run across the event today as I walked into San Diego’s downtown Central Library. It made me think. Wasn’t that the purpose, really?

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Preview of Animation Academy at Comic-Con Museum!

The Animation Academy – from Pencils to Pixels officially opens tomorrow at the Comic-Con Museum in Balboa Park!

Members of the Comic-Con Museum got a preview of the incredible new exhibition today!

Who doesn’t love animated features and cartoons? We all have our favorites, right? Well, chances are some of your best-loved television shows and movies pop up in this delightful exhibition.

The Animation Academy, as its name suggests, is both educational and interactive. Every sort of technology that has produced animation is explored, from early magic lanterns and spinning thaumatropes and phenakistoscopes(!), to state-of-the-art non-photorealistic rendering and 3D printing.

Not only will you learn about the rich history of animation, and the artists and studios who’ve added to the popular culture, but there are several opportunities for visitors to create their own animated masterpieces!

Among the numerous displays are realistic recreations of work stations, puppets and miniature sets that demonstrate what it’s like to be a stop motion animator.

Fans of Gumby and Looney Tunes, in particular, will be excited to find themselves immersed in well done, interactive displays.

Do you love Bugs Bunny and his friends? You’ll have a chance to view all sorts of original sketches, drawings and animation cells. You’ll even see the typewriter used by legendary Chuck Jones. (Did you know Chuck Jones was inspired by Mark Twain? I didn’t!)

The exhibition encourages curiosity and creativity. Kids will surely enjoy it. Adults with imagination and a sense of fun absolutely will, too!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!

Use Your Voice murals in North Park!

A wall in San Diego’s North Park neighborhood encourages creative people to Use Your Voice. Four small murals dedicated to artivism can be viewed on the west side of Nomad Donuts. Look north up Illinois Street from University Avenue and you’ll spot these artworks.

Use Your Voice is a project of Sounding Boards. Learn more about their past projects and mission by clicking here.

This special wall will host rotating murals. The first artists, whose work you see above, are Josue Baltezar, Kenda Francis, Mary Jhun, and Jon Pucci.

Previously, a very different mural decorated this space! See it here!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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!