Morning at the International Dragon Boat Race!

Today is the second and final day of the 11th Annual San Diego International Dragon Boat Race. Lots of action can be seen out on Mission Bay!

Enthusiastic teams from across the nation (including Southern and Northern California, Nevada, Arizona, Minnesota and New York) plus international teams (I noted Vancouver, Canada) have come together on this sunny San Diego weekend to race in traditional dragon boats.

I arrived at the event in the early morning just as things were getting started. Team members were stretching and warming up, the boat captains were having their meeting, and then the action began!

As the first boats paddled out to the starting line, just beyond the dock of the San Diego Mission Bay Resort, a group of Scouts presented the colors for the National Anthem.

Then here came the dragon boats, each team furiously paddling to the beat of a big drum!

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!

Photographs from 2022 Super Girl Pro!

This weekend the 2022 Super Girl Pro event was held next to the Oceanside Pier. A huge crowd of spectators turned out to watch the world’s top women surfers in action.

On Saturday I walked around to check out the many sights. I strolled about the large festival village, walked out onto the pier, paused to listen to a concert, and then headed to the beach.

The theme of Super Girl Pro is female empowerment, and inspiration could be found at every turn. I saw artists, Marines, Air Force pilots, gamers, many striving for health and fitness…

When the surfing superstars came in to the beach after a heat out in the ocean, girls ran to them excitedly to score autographs.

Enjoy these 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!

Longboard action pics at Super Girl Pro!

Super Girl Pro is taking place this weekend in Oceanside, California near the pier. The big event, the largest women’s surfing competition in the world, is free and open to the public, and the pier is the best place to watch the surfing action!

The longboard competition was so close to the pier I was able to take some pretty good pics that you might enjoy. These athletes are incredible. They ride waves for a great distance, while engaging in complicated footwork.

Check it out! The event resumes tomorrow, Sunday.

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!

Padres Alfaro mural: “Lets F***g Go San Diego!”

Jorge Alfaro had his fourth walk-off hit for a Padres baseball victory last week. Between all of his big clutch hits (including a Mother’s Day homerun predicted by his mom) and his warm, spirited personality, Jorge has quickly become a San Diego sports hero.

There’s a mural painted in a Chula Vista alley that remembers a passionate but perhaps uncouth exclamation made by Alfaro earlier this year during a post-game interview that was broadcast on live television.

“Lets f***g go San Diego!”

I photographed the “censored” mural exactly as it appears.

I searched the mural for an artist signature but saw none.

If you’d like to see this great Jorge Alfaro street art for yourself, walk down the alley that runs east of Third Avenue in Chula Vista, just south of Davidson Street.

This mural isn’t far from an awesome Manny Machado mural, which you can see by clicking 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!

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!

Aztec Village before first game at Snapdragon Stadium!

Snapdragon Stadium in Mission Valley officially opened today! The SDSU Aztecs are beginning their 2022 football season today with a big game against Arizona!

Before the game, a fun, festive Aztec Village was attracting a huge crowd of students, cheerleaders and fans outside the new stadium!

I watched as thousands streamed in from the Stadium trolley station, which also opened today, after a long closure due to the surrounding construction. I noticed that the river park and other areas around Snapdragon Stadium are very far from completed.

I hope to check out the new San Diego River park with its James Hubbell public artwork once it opens! Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, enjoy photos of all the “Grand Opening Day” fun outside Snapdragon Stadium!

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 ordinary guy in San Diego thanks Peter Seidler.

All of San Diego is buzzing with excitement. Something truly extraordinary is now happening in our city. Millions of ordinary people–like me–are feeling the electricity.

San Diego Padres owner Peter Seidler is someone I’ll probably never meet. He’s someone millions who live in San Diego will never personally meet.

Thank you Peter Seidler for making the Padres instant World Series contenders.

Thank you for millions of sudden cheers, smiles, high fives, great days. Thank you for all the precious lifelong memories that are surely coming. Thank you for fresh feelings of hope–a sustained anticipation for tomorrow . . . the next game . . . the next series . . . the next October.

Thank you for strengthening a diverse city’s sense of unity. Thank you for reinforcing a feeling of pride enjoyed by millions who live in San Diego.

Thank you for all the lives that will be enriched and brightened.

Parents, their children, their grandchildren and countless generations will remember. And celebrate.

Lastly, thank you from a blogger who loves the Padres. Yesterday, as I listened to the game, I experienced goosebumps.

I’ll probably have more goosebumps this afternoon.

Time to shine!

GO PADS!

Celebrating life at the 2022 Transplant Games!

A big celebration of life is taking place this week in San Diego. People from around the United States have gathered at the San Diego Convention Center for the 2022 Transplant Games!

Organ transplant recipients and living donors are participating in a variety of fun sports competitions. As you can see in the above photograph, cycling 5 km and 20 km road races along Harbor Drive were part of today’s activities!

Through this Wednesday, the public is welcome to visit the Transplant Games Village and Expo, located in Exhibit Halls A and B at the convention center. There you can watch some indoor competitions, such as basketball and table tennis. For a schedule of events, click here.

Many organizations that help those in the transplant community are also present.

I met authors who’ve written books describing the whole transplant process, making it all easier to understand. Other creators have produced videos featuring loved ones who were helped, or who helped to save a life by making an organ donation.

I saw organizations that create online community, gather inspirational stories, or offer practical guidance and mental health services. Medical providers and pharmaceutical companies also had tables. All of these smiling people were there to offer critical help.

Near the entrance to the Transplant Games Village and Expo, several beautiful quilts remembered loved one.

Everywhere I turned, I observed people full of happiness, gratitude and hope, and a strengthened love of life.

I came away feeling inspired.

Smiles from The Mended Hearts. The non-profit works to inspire hope and improve the quality of life of heart patients and their families through ongoing peer-to-peer support, education, and advocacy.

Robert Horsey has written the book Gifted and is producing a video concerning the complex topic of organ donation. According to his website: Even the largest football stadium in the U.S. could not fit the number of people on the national transplant waiting list.

Many transplant stories pinned to a board, courtesy Balboa Nephrology and Evergreen Nephrology.

Author Brenda Cortez is a living kidney donor. She has written a series of Howl the Owl books making transplant and medical procedures less scary for kids.

The Joe 238 documentary celebrates the decision to donate. According to the website: Through multiple stories of grief and recovery, we learn about healthy grieving, what it means to be a donor family and plant the seed for an honest conversation about organ donation every family needs to have.

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!

Transplant Games come to San Diego!

The 2022 Transplant Games are being held this week in San Diego!

A big parade was held for participants this morning along Harbor Drive. (Which I just missed!)

This evening the Opening Ceremony will be held at the San Diego Convention Center.

As their website explains: Every two years the Transplant Games of America gathers together thousands of transplant recipients, living donors, donor families, individuals on the waiting list, caregivers, transplant professionals, supporters and spectators for the world’s largest celebration of life.

Transplant recipients and donors will compete in many different sporting events through this Wednesday. Most of the competition will be at the Convention Center. It will also be the location of the Transplant Games of America Village, and according to the Schedule of Events, the public is welcome!

I think I’ll go tomorrow. I’d like to watch a bicycling competition that will be held Sunday morning at Embarcadero Marina Park South, just behind the Convention Center.

Would you like to become involved–perhaps by becoming an organ donor yourself? Check out the 2022 Transplant Games web page 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!

Many hands raised at Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon!

Hundreds of hands rose skyward in triumph at the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon this morning!

At the downtown finish line, a huge crowd of spectators and supporters encouraged the runners as they approached the end of their successful race!

Arms waved, hands shot up victoriously, fists were raised, feet danced. Friends and family shouted, took photos, celebrated, hugged.

Watching the spectacle, one felt a rush of joy and elation. Before your very eyes, you could see limitless human possibility.

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 shaper of surfboards and lives in Oceanside.

An inspirational exhibit at the California Surf Museum in Oceanside remembers a surfing legend.

Donald Takayama: Shaping Boards and Lives highlights the accomplishments of a champion surfer and one of the world’s most recognized surfboard shapers.

Looking at the extensive exhibit last weekend, I learned how Donald Takayama at the age of twelve moved from Hawaii to Southern California, having been invited to work at a Venice Beach surf shop, shaping boards. He was paid to wear a company logo on his shirt while surfing. Wikipedia states he may have been the world’s first professional surfer.

Takayama would move to Encinitas and then Oceanside, and continue to gain international fame shaping boards. He also would win many surfing competitions, including three consecutive Masters titles in the US Surfing Championships.

More impressively, he would win the hearts of many in the community. He was beloved by friends and family and surfers all over; he mentored future champions; and he even taught his friend, San Diego Chargers legend Junior Seau–also an Oceanside resident–how to surf.

Surfer Magazine named Donald Takayama one of 25 surfers who changed the sport. He has been inducted into the International Surfboard Builder Hall of Fame.

Visitors to the California Surf Museum will observe how one person changed the world around him in so many positive ways. They will see the enduring achievements of a great man.

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!