News Briefs for Point Loma-Ocean Beach February 2020

Peninsula Singers present a check to Loma Portal’s Foundation president Valerie Lawson, Principal Mark Morici and music teacher Candy Szalay.

Peninsula Singers seek voices for spring season

The Peninsula Singers community choir welcomes voices with all levels of experience to join for the spring season, which began Jan. 13. No audition is needed. Rehearsals take place Monday nights, 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Point Loma Library community room at 3701 Voltaire St.

The choir is a committee of the nonprofit Ocean Beach Community Foundation and is directed by Sarah Suhonen. Stewart Simon accompanies the choir on piano. To register, visit or attend a rehearsal. Questions? Call contact Bobbi Seelig at (519) 302-0871.

During its 2019 Hope for the Holidays campaign, the choir enhanced Loma Portal Elementary School’s music program, raising $2,444 to fund a set of ukuleles and purchase other needed items such as presentation microphones. A check was presented to Loma Portal’s Foundation president Valerie Lawson, Principal Mark Morici and music teacher Candy Szalay on Dec. 13 at Loma Portal School.

The Peninsula Singers community choir welcomes singers with all levels of experience to join for the spring season, which began Jan. 13.

Young Point Loman cheered by Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) announced that 6-year-old Point Loma resident Carter Santos, and 7-year-old La Mesa resident Valentina Betancourt, have been named 2020 Boy and Girl of the Year. Both children were diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in 2018 and have been bravely going through treatment while continuing their day-to-day lives.

For 10 weeks, these children will help raise as much funding as possible to find cures for blood cancers and ensure all patients have access to lifesaving treatments. Additionally, the man and woman who raise the most funds during the campaign will be awarded the title of Man or Woman of the Year.

The San Diego Chapter is accepting nominations through February. The 2020 campaign begins Wednesday, March 25 and runs until June 6, when Carter and Valentina will be celebrated at a Grand Finale Gala at Loews Coronado Bay Resort, and the man and woman who have raised the highest amount with their team will be awarded the title of Man & Woman of the Year. For more details, e-mail

Peninsula Family YMCA renamed after 50 years

On Saturday, Dec. 14, the Peninsula Family YMCA was renamed the T. Claude and Gladys B. Ryan Family YMCA (affectionately referred to as the Ryan Family YMCA), with more than 50 donors, community members, volunteers and staff witnessing the historic event. The Y has served the Point Loma and surrounding areas for nearly 50 years.

T. Claude Ryan arrived in San Diego in 1922 and made an immeasurable impact on the aviation industry and the community. Claude and his wife Gladys Bowen, a school teacher, created the Ryan Family Charitable Foundation, which has supported more than 120 charities. The Y branch was renamed in their honor to recognize their values and legacy in the community.

Jordan Beane, a representative from District 2 City Council member Jennifer Campbell’s office, presented a district proclamation to the family and the Y, marking Dec. 14 as “Ryan Family YMCA Day.” Details on the future of the facility can be found at

New operators at The Loma Club golf course in Point Loma

Laura Johnson and Luke Mahoney (co-founders of You & Yours Distilling Co.) along with their creative diector John Levan and Oliver Mahoney, have taken over as tenant/operators of the historic par three golf course The Loma Club. The team leased the course from Pendulum Property Partners, and current managers and employees will roll over to the new operations team, with no immediate changes to the nine-hole walking course and clubhouse.

The group’s goals are to elevate the experience by incorporating their signature approach to hospitality, first by updating the food and cocktail programs, and then by refreshing the clubhouse interiors. Later, there are plans to further develop the Loma Club, which will remain a separate entity from You & Yours Distilling Co.

You won’t have Lime scooters to kick around anymore

Just weeks after San Diego City Council banned e-scooters from popular beach spots, one of the biggest players in the industry has withdrawn from the market altogether.

Lime, the first e-scooter operator to launch in San Diego in early 2018, has pulled all 4,500 of its vehicles from the City, blaming excessive red tape and declining ridership.

“As part of our path to profitability, Lime has made the difficult decision to exit San Diego and focus our resources on markets that allow us to meet our ambitious goals for 2020,” said Brad Bao, CEO of Lime, in an e-mailed statement. “We appreciate the partnership we’ve enjoyed with San Diego and remain hopeful we can reintroduce Lime back into the community when the time is right.”

Lime — which also quit 11 other U.S. cities, although it continues to operate in 120 markets worldwide — follows Uber’s Jump and San Francisco’s Skip, both of which also complained of City regulations, out San Diego’s door.

Bird, Lyft and Spin are now San Diego’s only remaining e-scooter operators.

San Diego school district sues vaping manufacturer

Claiming that teen vaping leads to absenteeism, attorneys for the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) filed suit against JUUL Labs on Jan. 7 for “its role in cultivating and fostering an e-cigarette epidemic that disrupts the education and learning environment across the district,” according to an SDUSD press release.

“Our district is in the business of educating students in a healthy and safe environment,” said SDUSD superintendent Cindy Marten. “This lawsuit supports district goals by holding JUUL accountable for its harmful marketing practices and unsafe products.”

Filed in San Diego Superior Court, the suit follows similar actions filed by school districts in Los Angeles, Glendale, Compton and Anaheim. All districts seek compensatory damages to provide relief from financial losses as a result of students missing school, to establish anti-vaping outreach and education programs, and to enforce anti-vaping policies.

According to a recent survey by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 9.5 percent of eighth-graders, 14 percent of 10th graders and 16.2 percent of 12th graders have vaped within the previous month.

Marriott Marquis launches themed meetings on the USS Midway aircraft carrier

Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina, 333 W. Harbor Drive, announced a new catering initiative. Dubbed “Meet Me at the Midway,” it invites planners to host events on the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier and Museum, 910 N Harbor Drive in downtown San Diego, with catering services by the Marriott Marquis, to integrate an authentic San Diego experience with custom designed meetings. Several catering packages are available.

Package 1, inspired by the Navy’s Top Gun program, includes viewing a collection of restored aircraft, music, entertainment and barbecue favorites, with tours of the Midway as an optional add-on.

Package 2, Mystery on the Midway, is a team-building experience where every attendee is a suspect ... and the flight deck becomes an exclusive dinner club with cocktail tables, jazz and Big Band entertainment, and clues that lead to catering stations.

Package 3, Something to Swing About, takes guests back to the era of big bands and USO shows to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the USS Midway being commissioned. Docents lead attendees on tours of the ship and share stories of service; entertainment ranges from projected 1940s movies, swing dancers and a Rosie the Riveter aerialist, followed by fireworks. (619) 234-1500.

Mysterious Galaxy bookstore moving to Midway District

Mysterious Galaxy, an iconic independent bookstore in Clairemont specializing in science fiction, fantasy, mystery, young adult, romance and horror, is transferring ownership to Matthew Berger and Jennifer Marchisotto. They plan to move the shop to 3555 Rosecrans St., and offer a curated selection of fiction and host weekly author and community events.

The new location will be significantly larger, so Berger and Marchisotto said they plan to expand the children’s literature section and partner with schools to develop new educational programs.

Civics contest highlights suffrage milestones

The anniversaries of two constitutional amendments that greatly expanded voting rights are the focus of this year’s Ninth Circuit Civics Contest: the 150th anniversary of the 15th amendment, which granted voting rights to persons of color, and the centennial of the 19th amendment, which accorded those same rights to women.

Students are asked to write an essay, or produce a short video, arguing whether any barriers remain today that prevent U.S. citizens from voting and, if so, what changes can be made to end them.

The contest is open to students in grades 9-12 across the western U.S. The top three finishers in both the essay and video competitions will receive $2,000 for first place, $1,000 for second place and $500 for third place. First-place winners, along with a parent or guardian, also will be invited to the 2020 Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference in Portland, Oregon, in July.

Entries will be accepted from Feb. 15 to March 25, 2020.

Poll workers needed for March 3 primary election

Poll workers — especially those who are bilingual — are needed for the March 3 presidential primary. (The Registrar’s office is required by federal law to provide bilingual speakers and voting materials to voters who speak Spanish, Filipino, Vietnamese and Chinese.)

To become a poll worker, applicants must be a U.S citizen and registered to vote in California, or lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the U.S. Poll workers must have transportation to their assigned polling location, have access to the internet for online training, and attend a two-hour class in person.

Stipends range from $100 to $175, depending on the assignment. Bilingual workers receive an additional $15 if they are assigned to provide language assistance to voters.

Apply online at or call (858) 565-5800.

Outreach for appointment to redistricting commission underway in San Diego

The start of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2020 Census signals the need for the City of San Diego to soon convene the Redistricting Commission. The nine-member Commission, with two alternate members, is selected by a local appointing authority comprised of three retired judges.

The Commission will have the exclusive ability to adopt plans specifying City Council district boundaries for the City of San Diego.

Redistricting is the process of redrawing the City Council district boundaries every 10 years following the federal census. The redrawing of district boundaries is designed to ensure local legislatures are representative of the City’s population and are used for all elections. Although the application submission period is between May 1 and June 30, 2020, outreach for potential Redistricting Commission applicants begins now.

The Office of the City Clerk will visit Community Planning Group meetings, local community groups and civic organizations to let everyone know of the opportunity to participate in the Commission.

If you would like to receive a presentation or more information, or would like to be considered for appointment to the Redistricting Commission, contact the Office of the City Clerk at (619) 533-4000 or via e-mail at or visit

City wants to present recycling awards to local businesses

The City of San Diego’s Environmental Services Department (ESD) invites local businesses to apply for its annual Business Waste Reduction and Recycling Award.

“Each year, businesses and organizations work to improve their waste diversion programs,” said ESD interim director Gene Matter. “It’s prudent we honor them for helping the City achieve its Climate Action Plan goal of zero waste by the year 2040. Their hard work not only helps extend the life of the Miramar Landfill, but it reduces their carbon footprint.”

Applications are being accepted through Monday, Feb. 10 at or City of San Diego Environmental Services Department, c/o Meagan Browning, 9601 Ridgehaven Court, Suite 320, San Diego, CA 92123.

Have a news tip or story idea about Point Loma or Ocean Beach? E-mail the details and include a related photo, if possible, to

— Compiled by Point Loma-OB Monthly staff from local reports.


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