Point Loma-OB Happenings: Light festival and drones; hat contest; Purple Star Schools; Parkinson’s 5K; more

"Hat Encounters of the OB Kind" is the theme of the Ocean Beach Woman’s Club Hat Contest on Thursday, April 6.
“Hat Encounters of the OB Kind” is the theme of the Ocean Beach Woman’s Club Hat Contest on Thursday, April 6, tying in with the Luminosity Festival of Light and drone show scheduled for July 4.
(Ocean Beach Woman’s Club)

Drone light show planned for Fourth of July in Ocean Beach

A display of hundreds of synchronized drones is scheduled to light the sky just north of the Ocean Beach Pier this Fourth of July as part of the planned Luminosity Festival of Light.

The event will feature experimental light-based installations and projection mapping to create an immersive experience for spectators, according to Luminosity, an organization in Ocean Beach created to find an alternative to OB’s previous Fourth of July fireworks shows at the pier.

“With fireworks no longer able to be staged off the Ocean Beach Pier due to structural issues, coupled with environmental concerns and the negative effects fireworks have on pets, wildlife and individuals who have PTSD, a change was needed,” Mike James, Luminosity’s founder, said in a statement. “We believe the Luminosity event will set a standard for communities looking to move away from fireworks.”

Luminosity, which includes local experts in art, marketing, festival lighting and fundraising, is collaborating on the drone display with Global Drone Network and Skyworx Drone Shows. Roy Laughlin, chief operating officer of GDN, said in a statement that “we will make this show an unforgettable experience for everyone in attendance.”

Ocean Beach hat contest returns April 6

Mae Clarke wears her elaborate floral hat circa 1960.
(Ocean Beach Woman’s Club)

“Hat Encounters of the OB Kind” is the theme of the third Ocean Beach Woman’s Club Hat Contest coming up from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday, April 6, at Dirty Birds restaurant, 1929 Cable St., Ocean Beach.

The inspiration for the hat contest came from a book by Kathy Blavatt called “Ocean Beach: Where Land and Water Meet.” It contains a photo of Mae Clarke wearing a tall, elaborately decorated floral hat around 1960.

The contest categories are Ode to Mae (an homage to the Woman’s Club’s garden tradition), Most OBcean, Most Original, Most Out of This World and Most Luminous (coordinating with the Luminosity Festival of Light and drone show scheduled for July 4 at the Ocean Beach Pier).

All in attendance will be given a ballot to choose their favorites in each category. Men are invited to compete.

“I’ve always thought the hat contest was akin to a float in a parade, but much easier to pull off,” said event coordinator Susan Winkie. “You can still show off your creativity and even win a prize. It’s just a lot of silly, colorful and community fun, but without all the work!”

‘Dust Child’ author to speak at Point Loma Assembly

Author Nguyen Phan Que Mai will discuss her new novel, “Dust Child,” at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 21, at the Point Loma Assembly.

She will be accompanied at the event, presented by La Playa Books and the Center for War and Society at San Diego State University, by Vietnamese actress and audiobook narrator Quyen Ngo.

Admission is $5, or $35 with a book copy. The Point Loma Assembly is at 3035 Talbot St. For tickets and more information, visit

Three Point Loma schools get Purple Star designation for aid to military families

Point Loma’s Correia Middle School, Loma Portal Elementary School and Point Loma High School in the San Diego Unified School District have been designated as 2023 Purple Star Schools by California Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond.

The California Purple Star program, in its second year, recognizes schools that are committed and equipped to support the needs of students and families connected to the military. More than two dozen San Diego County schools were recognized, and 59 statewide.

Purple Star schools seek to reduce the burden on military-connected students and their families by providing transition supports.

Students who have a parent or guardian on active duty in the military must move whenever there are orders to relocate. That means children in military families can expect to change schools six to nine times between kindergarten and 12th grade, three times more than children not connected to the military.

Those students often face specific academic and social-emotional challenges as their school and community environments change, and they may struggle to stay on track in their education.

In addition to providing streamlined enrollment and graduation support for students moving in or out of the state, San Diego Unified partners with school liaison officers from the Navy and Marines and has military-family counselors at several schools, according to the district. — The San Diego Union-Tribune and Point Loma-OB Monthly

Bagel shop coming to Ocean Beach

Spill the Beans coffee and bagel shop plans to open a location at 4827 Newport Ave. in Ocean Beach.
(Spill the Beans)

Spill the Beans, a coffee and bagel shop with locations in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter and Seaport Village, is coming soon to 4827 Newport Ave. in Ocean Beach.

Spill the Beans says it uses a bagel recipe crafted by chefs Kevin Templeton and Karina Orozco with a different type of flour than that used by most other bagel shops that is lower in gluten and softer in consistency.

To learn more, visit

5K walk for Parkinson’s Association set for Liberty Station

The Parkinson’s Association of San Diego will hold its 21st annual Step by Step 5K Walk on Saturday, April 1, at Liberty Station in Point Loma.

Proceeds will help the association make resources available to San Diego County residents who have or are affected by Parkinson’s disease.

Check-in for the event will start at 7:30 a.m., with the walk beginning at 9 a.m. Dogs are welcome.

Registration is $50 for adults, $10 for youths ages 12-17 and free for children younger than 12. Donations are tax-deductible and include a walk T-shirt.

For registration, visit or call (858) 215-2570.

Cabrillo National Monument to be site of Easter sunrise service

The Kiwanis Club of Point Loma will present a non-denominational Easter sunrise service Sunday, April 9, at Cabrillo National Monument in Point Loma.

The service will begin at 6:30 a.m. in the lower parking lot. The gates to Cabrillo National Monument will open at 6 a.m. There will be seating for about 500 people.

This is the 72nd year the Kiwanis Club has provided the service, club President Joanna DaCosta said.

The speakers will be Capt. Kenneth Franklin, commanding officer of Naval Base Point Loma, and Gary Jander, a Kiwanis International trustee and past governor of the Kiwanis Cal-Nev-Ha district. The chaplain conducting the service this year is Lt. John Kim of Naval Base Point Loma.

The event also will feature music and the Young Marines of San Diego color guard.

Coffee, tea and pastries will be offered immediately after the service.

The Cabrillo National Monument’s visitor and parking fees will be waived for the Easter sunrise service, but guests will be asked to leave before the park’s regular opening at 9 a.m.

For more information, email

Point Loma Republican women’s group sets lunch

The Republican Women of California, Point Loma, will hold their monthly meeting and lunch at 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 19, at the Bay Club Hotel & Marina, 2131 Shelter Island Drive.

The cost is $37. For more information and reservations, email

San Diego Foundation offers $500,000 in grants to support youth mental health

The Point Loma-based San Diego Foundation is offering $500,000 in grants through its Healthy Children & Families Initiative to support access to mental and behavioral health resources for local youths and families.

Nonprofit organizations are invited to apply for up to $40,000 in funding through 5 p.m., Friday, April 7. A Q&A webinar will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 22.

For more information or to apply, visit

— Compiled by Point Loma-OB Monthly staff


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