All Things Ocean Beach
History, Places to Go, Things to Do, and Reader Stories from the Last 40 Years
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An Insider's Travel and Visitor Guide to Ocean Beach
Things to do | Places to go | Over 30 original stories about the life, people, and history of Ocean Beach, San Diego
Take Interstate 8 all the way to the Pacific shore, to the end of the line, and you are in Ocean Beach. If you’re new to California, “OB” might not fit what you expected: high-rise condos and corporate chain-stores. In fact, the defiant beachfront community has fought to keep things the way they were when the Stones sang “Route 66.”
Signs of OB defiance: Surfers shoot the pier, boards slaloming past the concrete pylons, even though it’s illegal. A hatred of things corporate. Mention Starbucks or McDonalds to a local, if you dare.
In 1972, the Ocean Beach Town Council allocated a gorgeous expanse of flat, sandy beach, adjacent to the deep blue Mission Bay Channel, just for dogs.
Ocean Beach wasn’t always an ongoing experiment in social anarchy. Before there were OBceans – pronounced oh-BEE-shuns – and rowdy bars, and the blare of motorcycles competing with jumbo jets overhead, Ocean Beach was so isolated the early developers had to hype enticements.
Rumor had it that the Fountain of Youth gurgled a life-extending elixir somewhere on the north facing slope of Point Loma. Sip from OB’s Fountain, the legend promised, and stay 30 forever.
A stroll down Newport’s a circus of smells. Along with fogs of cigarette smoke, the open-air bistros exude sizzling burgers, carne asada, and thick pizzas. Pyramid Patchouli may waft from a dress shop – like Wings, formerly the Strand Theatre — and you half expect Janis Joplin to emerge in blue-tinted granny glasses, a tie-dyed shift, and clutching a half-empty pint of Jack Daniels in a paper bag.
Now you can read about the most important annual events, landmarks, and institutions that make Ocean Beach what it is. Plus nearly 40 original nonfiction stories from the San Diego Reader archives.
Ideal for visitors and locals alike!