New sights on a morning walk downtown.

A colorful canvas in the window of James Watts' studio on Seventh Avenue. I don't recall seeing this cool artwork before.
A colorful canvas in the window of James Watts’ studio on Seventh Avenue. I don’t recall seeing this artwork before.

This morning I walked south down Seventh Avenue, from the top of Cortez Hill to Petco Park.

I was happy to spot some new (and old) cool sights along this stretch of downtown San Diego. So I took photographs!

Some street art recently painted on a sidewalk utility box. I Love Downtown San Diego.
Some street art recently painted on a sidewalk utility box. I Love Downtown San Diego.
Complex reflection in the windows of the building at 701 B Street, which has undergone some upgrades.
Complex reflection in the windows of the building at 701 B Street, which has undergone some upgrades, including this west entrance.
Looking north up Seventh Avenue through San Diego's Financial District.
Looking north up Seventh Avenue through downtown San Diego’s Financial District.
Crane swings a load above the Bosa Tower construction site, with the old Hotel Churchill sign in the background.
Crane swings a load above the Bosa Tower construction site, with the old Hotel Churchill sign in the background.
Advertisements peeling from a construction site fence.
Advertisements peeling from another construction site fence.
A huge mural is now being painted on the rear of the Moxy San Diego Gaslamp Downtown! It appears to depict the Gaslamp Quarter.
A huge mural is now being painted on the rear of the Moxy San Diego Gaslamp Downtown! This cool new mural appears to depict part of the Gaslamp Quarter.
Reflections on the shiny Sempra Energy building, with the historic old 1887 Clermont Hotel in the foreground.
Morning reflections on the shiny Sempra Energy building, with the historic old 1887 Clermont Hotel in the foreground.
A new shirt with a West Coast State of Mind, in a window of the Padres Team Store in the old Western Metal Supply Building.
A new shirt with a West Coast State of Mind, in a window of the Padres Team Store, which is located in the Western Metal Supply Building.
Palm trees reflected in the glassy, very modern Omni San Diego Hotel.
Palm trees reflected in the glassy, very modern Omni San Diego Hotel.

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!

Strange beauty of a brick wall downtown.

Stand at the corner of India Street and A Street in downtown San Diego, turn north, and you’ll probably notice an old brick wall on the other side of a parking lot. Approach the wall and you’ll see a complex mosaic of paint and mortar. Like the brushstrokes of a painting, they tell a unique story.

I’m under the impression this building was once a soda bottling plant. I posted a couple photographs of the Hires Root Beer graphics five years ago 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!

Another colorful walk around East Village!

The final words of the famous poem Invictus, outside the entrance to Invictus Fitness. I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.
The final words of the famous poem Invictus, painted near the entrance to Invictus Fitness. I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.

I enjoyed an aimless walk around East Village on Saturday. My camera found a variety of cool sights! Some old and some new!

As you can see, there are all sorts of new high-rises under construction in this dynamic part of downtown San Diego.

I walked past the Quartyard at its new corner on Market Street. It’s a couple blocks east of where it used to be. I’ll be posting those fun photos shortly!

Colorful banners along the side of Urban Discovery Academy in East Village.
Colorful banners along the side of Urban Discovery Academy in East Village.
Abstract cat on a sidewalk chalkboard.
Abstract cat on a sidewalk chalkboard.
A cool new mural by Michael Brooks Chandler on the side of a building at 13th Street and J Street.
A cool new mural by Michael Brooks Chandler on the side of a building at 13th Street and J Street.
The 23-story K1 San Diego luxury apartment building is currently under construction just east of the downtown Central Library.
The 23-story K1 San Diego luxury apartment building is currently under construction just east of the downtown Central Library.
Mission Brewery has been located in the old Wonder Bread Building for years now.
Mission Brewery has been located in the old Wonder Bread Building for years now.
This odd, rather memorable mural has also been on the north wall of the building at 1400 L Street for many years. I know nothing about it!
This unusual, humorous mural has been on the north wall of the building at 1400 L Street for many years, too. I know nothing about it!
Pinnacle on the Park rises above the south entrance to Fault Line Park.
The recently completed Pinnacle on the Park rises above the south entrance to Fault Line Park.
Colorful new residential high-rises beyond one of the two silvery spheres at Fault Line Park in East Village.
New residential buildings rise beyond reflections in one of the silvery spheres at Fault Line Park.
An artistic blonde peers out from a shop window in East Village!
A blonde peers out from a shop window in East Village!

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!

Even more colorful street art in City Heights!

Here’s even more colorful street art in City Heights!

I took these photographs before, during and after my recent walking tour of San Diego’s rapidly growing outdoor art gallery. I spotted this artwork along University Avenue, between I-80 and I-15. It’s an extremely diverse neighborhood, where many languages are spoken and many life experiences move together down shared streets.

If you’re unaware that San Diego has a drive-through art gallery, I urge you to check it out 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!

A few odd, humorous sights around town!

Sign in a window of The Bell Marker in downtown San Diego: 24 Hours In a Day. 24 Beers In a Case. Coincidence?
Sign in a window of The Bell Marker on Broadway. 24 Hours In a Day. 24 Beers In a Case. Coincidence?

Walk randomly about San Diego and you’ll inevitably stumble upon a few odd, humorous sights…

If you're driving an inverted car past Jack in the Box near Hazard Center, this stop sign might make sense.
If you’re driving an inverted car past Jack in the Box near Hazard Center, this stop sign might make sense.
An unexpected Kiwi Crossing street sign in Little Italy.
An unexpected Kiwi Crossing street sign in Little Italy.
This might be the most dirty, decrepit, ramshackle house in downtown San Diego. One day it will probably vanish in a cloud of dust.
This might be the most dirty, decrepit, ramshackle house in downtown San Diego. One day it’ll likely vanish in a cloud of dust.
A miniature garden in Tuna Harbor. One potted plant.
A miniature garden in Tuna Harbor. One potted plant.
A funny sight hanging out in Little Italy. Jay Leno!
A funny sight hanging out in Little Italy. Jay Leno!
A very peculiar figure creeps along a downtown sidewalk.
A very peculiar figure creeps along a downtown sidewalk.
Another odd figure on the back of a vehicle.
Another odd figure on the back of a vehicle.
An East Village shop uses The Force to compel would-be shoppers.
An East Village shop uses The Force to compel would-be shoppers.
Over three months to Christmas, and I already see a candy cane in one window!
It’s over three months until Christmas, and I already see a candy cane in one window!

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’s outdoor, drive-through art gallery!

A large, welcoming Love City Heights mural greets people along University Avenue near Interstate 15.
A large, welcoming Love City Heights mural greets people along University Avenue near Interstate 15.

There’s a surprising, rapidly expanding outdoor art gallery in San Diego that anybody can freely enjoy. The huge canvases of this unique gallery are the walls of buildings in City Heights, on the stretch of University Avenue between I-805 and I-15.

Eye-catching works of art by noted San Diego and Southern California muralists have recently been painted all along this “drive-through” gallery. And many more will be appearing soon!

I recently enjoyed a walking tour of the colorful murals, led by Carlos Quezada and Edwin Lohr, two members of Love City Heights, an association affiliated with the City Heights Town Council. Carlos and Edwin are both visionaries who are working with local residents, community leaders and businesses to bring new life to this extraordinarily diverse San Diego neighborhood.

An important part of their effort is #theavenuemuralproject. The Avenue Mural Project is using the magic of art to transform University Avenue, which contains City Heights’ Business District, into a vibrant place full of culture, creativity and community pride.

I learned that Carlos has a definite goal. He’d like to have one new street mural painted every month. His hope is that eventually three works of public art will be easily seen from any random spot along “The Avenue”.

I also learned that Love City Heights is collaborating with the City Heights Development Corporation and Mid-City CAN (Community Advocacy Network) to create even more murals east of I-15 through their youth program.

In addition to filling the streets with cool art, Love City Heights is working with business and property owners to transform their historic San Diego neighborhood into a dynamic place where people from all over will come to dine, shop and enjoy themselves. City Heights is the most diverse community in all of San Diego, and is centrally located, with many unique ethnic restaurants that can be found nowhere else. City Heights is uniquely qualified to be an authentic cultural attraction in San Diego.

Would you like to learn more about San Diego’s colorful, rapidly growing “drive-through” art gallery?

Are you an artist, resident or local business owner who’d like to participate in the revitalization of City Heights?

These are some links that you can check out:

Love City Heights on Facebook

#theavenuemuralproject tag on Instagram

TheAvenueSD.com

video about the mural project on YouTube

Do you live in San Diego and want something fun to do? Hop in your car or put on your walking shoes, then embark on a voyage of discovery along University Avenue between I-805 and I-15, where you will enjoy an ever-growing gallery of murals!

Here are a few . . .

The first mural painted by The Avenue Mural Project in City Heights contains joyful swirls of many colors! Endless Summer was designed by artist Erin Bowman.
The first mural painted by The Avenue Mural Project in City Heights contains joyful swirls of many colors! Endless Summer was designed by artist Erin Bowman.
A beautiful sun shines above stylized waves.
The warm San Diego sun shines above stylized waves.
The Endless Summer mural was painted by local school children, whose names appear in one corner, along with many positive messages.
The Endless Summer mural was painted by local school children, whose names appear in one corner, along with many positive messages.
Earlier this year I posted a photo of this mural on my blog. I hadn't realized at the time it's part of a cool outdoor drive-through art gallery in City Heights!
Earlier this year I posted a photo of this mural on my blog. I hadn’t realized it’s part of a cool outdoor drive-through art gallery in City Heights!
I was told this compassionate Amor mural, by @inkpaint and @fabianafoca is a work in progress.
Compassion in a City Heights alley. I was told this Amor mural, by @inkpaint and @fabianafoca, is a work in progress.
The beautiful tile mosaic A is not quite completed.
The beautiful tile mosaic “A” is not quite completed.
VISUAL painted the wall of a MetroPCS store with a cool image of kids communicating with tin cans and a string.
VISUAL painted the wall of a MetroPCS store with a cool image of kids communicating with tin cans and a string.
One business along University Avenue had their building painted with a wonderful mural with images of nature.
One business along University Avenue had their building painted with a pleasing mural containing elements of nature.
Another local store has happy, inviting murals painted on a side of their building.
Another local store now has happy, inviting murals painted on a side of their building.
This fun image depicts kids breaking open a piñata.
This fun image depicts kids breaking open a piñata.
A mural titled The Garden Party by artists Althea Rose Neff, Gilbert Cota and Alex Malone.
A mural titled The Garden Party by artists Althea Rose Neff, Gilbert Cota and Alex Malone.
A closer photo of The Garden Party mural, on the wall of popular Mexican restaurant Super Cocina.
A closer photo of The Garden Party mural, on the wall of popular Mexican restaurant Super Cocina.
Los Angeles muralist Ruben Rojas, co-founder of Beautify Earth, painted LOVE on the side of 7-Eleven in City Heights.
Los Angeles muralist Ruben Rojas, co-founder of Beautify Earth, painted LOVE on the side of 7-Eleven in City Heights.

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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Action photos from Labor Day weekend stickball!

Today I enjoyed watching an action-packed game of stickball in Little Italy.

San Diego’s annual Labor Day weekend stickball tournament has become a big community event, with sponsors and media coverage and people on lawn chairs lining sidewalks watching players crush the spaldeen. A solid swing of the broom handle will launch the ball like a rubber rocket to the other end of the block!

When games are underway, I always make it a point to walk through Little Italy, so I can hang out for a bit and watch the stickball teams compete for fame and glory. The action is intense but it’s all in good fun.

I learned that this year the stickball teams are all local. The game I watched had a number of exciting plays.

Here come photos that capture a bit of the flavor…

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!