Kids’ NewsDay benefits Rady Children’s Hospital!

Selling special edition Union-Tribune newspapers during Kids' NewsDay!
Selling very special edition Union-Tribune newspapers during Kids’ NewsDay!

Smiling volunteers could be seen throughout San Diego this morning selling special edition newspapers! Today was the 25th anniversary of Kids’ NewsDay, a much-anticipated yearly event whose purpose is to benefit Rady Children’s Hospital.

Over the years, thousands of children and families have been helped by the money raised by generous people who purchase this inspiring edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune. Since the first Kids’ NewsDay in 1990, about 30,000 volunteers have sold over a million papers, raising nearly 3 million dollars! That’s amazing! The featured section of the newspaper is filled with stories of kids overcoming extremely difficult situations, many with rare or life-threatening diseases. The stories are filled with optimism, and the most inspiring stories are written by children themselves!

If you would like to make a donation to Rady Children’s Hospital, please click this link!

Kid's NewsDay helps raise funds for Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego.
Kid’s NewsDay helps raise funds for Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego.

Signs of Halloween in downtown San Diego.

Scarecrow and hay bales at pumpkin patch in San Diego's new waterfront park.
Scarecrow and hay bales at pumpkin patch in San Diego’s new waterfront park.

During my mid-afternoon walk around downtown San Diego today, I was watching for fun Halloween photo opportunities. It’s less than two weeks away!  I had a little bit of luck…

(The above pic was taken after all the pumpkins were snatched up, but lots of families were still about enjoying the pleasant day!)

Spiders on side of Little Italy building wrap a skeleton.
Spiders on side of Little Italy building wrap a skeleton.
Spooky shredded sails of haunted Star of India on Embarcadero.
Spooky shredded sails of haunted Star of India flutter in wind on the Embarcadero.
Gaslamp parties celebrate Halloween and Day of the Dead.
Gaslamp parties celebrate Halloween and Mexico’s Day of the Dead.
Alamo Flags at Seaport Village has a smelly witch foot!
Trick or treat?  Alamo Flags at Seaport Village has a smelly witch foot!
Just relaxing on a nice Autumn Sunday by the Seaport Village carousel.
Just relaxing on a nice cool Autumn Sunday by the Seaport Village carousel.
Kid checks out pumpkins and colorful display at Seaport Village.
Kid checks out pumpkins and colorful leafy display at Seaport Village.
Gaslamp banners advertise a monster bash block party.
Gaslamp banners advertise a monster bash block party.
Donut Bar window contains a scary skull-headed server!
Donut Bar window downtown contains a scary skull-headed server!

Mermaid, binoculars, and a rainbow-making kite.

Mermaid with a megaphone on the bay side of the narrow Canyon Path.
Mermaid with a megaphone on the bay side of the narrow Canyon Path.

A mermaid emerges near the edge of beautiful San Diego Bay. She summons people from the bustling city with her megaphone…

Man with binoculars peers into dark alley between convention center and Marriott.
Man with binoculars peers into dark alley between convention center and Marriott.

A man with binoculars peers between the San Diego Convention Center and the Marriott Marquis hotel. He heard the mermaid’s siren call, and is trying to catch a glimpse.  She seems to be waiting at the end of a long, mysterious passageway…

Unique entrance to hidden walkway that provides bay access.
Unique entrance to partially hidden walkway that provides easy bay access.

Will these people walking along succeed in finding the elusive mermaid?  Turn left!  Turn left!

Walking through narrow Canyon Path between buildings.
Walking through narrow Canyon Path between buildings.

The mermaid seems to be somewhere ahead. The narrow Canyon Path between buildings is shadowy and filled with dark trees and bushes. It’s a bit scary. Where are we going? Are we lost?

Prismatic kite in blue sky above the Canyon Path.
Prismatic kite in blue sky above the Canyon Path.

Look up! It’s a shining kite in the blue sky!

Colorful light like a rainbow cast by prism kite onto building side.
Colorful light like a rainbow is cast by prism kite onto building side.

As we approach the mermaid on the opposite side, a beautiful rainbow-like splash of color appears on the Canyon Path’s vertical side! This secret place seems to be filled with magic!

The mermaid, man with binoculars and prismatic kite are all part of public art called The Benefit of Mr. Kite. This fun artwork was created to draw attention to an easily overlooked 925-foot long  pedestrian accessway between the convention center and Marriott Marquis hotel, leading from Harbor Drive to the Marriott Marina on San Diego Bay. The artists responsible for our magical journey are Mags Harries and Lajos Héder!

UPDATE! Navy 200 year commemorative plaque.

Photo of Navy 200 year commemoration plaque courtesy the Port of San Diego.
Photo of Navy 200 year commemoration plaque courtesy the Port of San Diego.

I just received a comment from one of the creators of this Navy 200 year anniversary commemorative plaque, providing information about its origin:

My name is William Abell and I was an ML3 aboard the USS Ajax AR6 and I helped create this plaque in the ship’s foundry in 1975. I have a certificate from Admiral J L Holloway III commemorating the plaque’s creation and my part in its creation. The date on the certificate is Oct 13, 1975. The plaque was to be a gift to the City of San Diego. I am now a retired police commander living in Monroe WA.

Please visit this blog post where there is a detailed description of this once-mysterious plaque!

Little Italy’s tasty art, a Recipe For Friendship.

Four sculptures depict tables of tasty food in Amici Park.
Four sculptures depict tables of tasty food in Amici Park.

People love to congregate in Little Italy’s Amici Park, just north of downtown San Diego. There’s a big grassy area for dogs, a couple bocce ball courts, and some tables and chairs where neighbors can just sit and relax. Or eat.

Honestly, who wouldn’t be hungry in this park? There’s food all over the place! Metal sculptures in the shape of food, to be exact!

The red and white checkered tablecloths you see are actually glass mosaics. The recipes beside the plates are designed so that inquisitive gourmets can take a rubbing, and bring the recipe home. The various round plaques are sprinkled about the park, set in concrete where people might walk. The entire installation is called “A Recipe For Friendship” and was created by Nina Karavasiles in 2001. The public art was commissioned by the City of San Diego Commission For Arts and Culture.

Now, what’s for dinner?

Metal sculpture of blackened fish taco plate in Little Italy's unique Amici Park.
Metal sculpture of blackened fish taco plate in Little Italy’s unique Amici Park.
Blackened fish taco recipe from Debra Scott.
Blackened fish taco recipe from Debra Scott.
Food for thought is no substitute for the real thing. --Walt Kelly
Food for thought is no substitute for the real thing. –Walt Kelly
You'd need some powerful teeth to eat these stuffed artichokes!
You’d need some powerful teeth to eat these stuffed artichokes!
Stuffed artichokes recipe from Rose Cresci.
Stuffed artichokes recipe from Rose Cresci.
Round plaque at Amici Park shows many popular spices.
Round plaque at Amici Park shows many popular spices.
Marinara sauce on plate of tasty pasta makes fun public art!
Marinara sauce on plate of tasty pasta makes fun public art!
Marinara sauce recipe from restaurateurs Lisa and Joe Busalacchi.
Marinara sauce recipe from local restaurateurs Lisa and Joe Busalacchi.
Only the pure in heart can make a good soup. --Beethoven.
Only the pure in heart can make a good soup. –Beethoven.
A plate of fava beans served up on a checkered tablecloth makes for cool artwork.
A plate of fava beans served up on a checkered tablecloth makes for cool artwork.
Fava bean spread recipe from Nina Karavasiles.
Fava bean spread recipe from Nina Karavasiles.
A Recipe For Friendship celebrates food, created by Nina Karvasiles in 2001.
A Recipe For Friendship celebrates food, created by Nina Karvasiles in 2001.

Bocce Ball Tournament at Little Italy’s Festa.

Participants in Little Italy's Festa Bocce Ball Tournament at practice.
Participants in Little Italy’s Festa Bocce Ball Tournament at practice.

During last Sunday’s Festa event in San Diego’s Little Italy, an exciting bocce tournament was held at Amici Park, right next to all the glorious Gesso Italiano chalk art.

Bocce is similar to lawn bowling and dates back to the ancient Roman Empire. According to a plaque set in the concrete near one of Amici Park’s bocce courts, it’s the world’s oldest sport!

I captured a few pics of the action!

Two bocce courts are open to the public in Amici Park near sculptures of Italian food!
Two bocce courts are open to the public in Amici Park near sculptures of Italian food!
Man prepares to strategically send bocce ball down the long court.
Man prepares to strategically send bocce ball down the long court.
Watching the action on a lazy, perfect San Diego weekend.
Watching the action on a lazy, perfect San Diego weekend.
I saw a lot of stylish hats and calculating, cunning players.
I saw a lot of stylish hats and calculating, cunning players.
Gentleman leans against checkered tablecloth set with a plate of metal artichokes.
Gentleman leans against checkered tablecloth set with a plate of metal artichokes.
Rules of bocce on a plaque. The right way to play bocce is the way your dad plays!
Rules of bocce on a plaque. The right way to play bocce is the way your dad plays!

Incredible chalk art at 2014 Festa in Little Italy.

Shaina Joel chalk art shows Italian actress Sophia Loren.
Shaina Joel chalk art shows Italian actress Sophia Loren.

This morning, about an hour before the 2014 Festa opened in Little Italy, I walked up and down Date Street taking photographs of the incredible chalk art being created for the annual Italian-themed event. Numerous artists were already busy, their works at various stages of completion. Italian chalk art is also called Gesso Italiano. It’s bold, bright and colorful–a pure delight for the eyes. Over a hundred thousand people will converge on downtown San Diego to admire the amazing art once the festival opens.

I have included the entrant names in the captions of each image. Enjoy!

Looking east along Date Street in San Diego's Little Italy neighborhood during 2014 Festa.
Looking east along Date Street in San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood during 2014 Festa.
Bijan Masoumpanah chalk art shows face of classic Roman statue.
Bijan Masoumpanah chalk art shows face of classic Roman statue.
Shawnet Sweets chalk art depicts a colorful, whiskered person.
Shawnet Sweets chalk art depicts a colorful, whiskered person.
Squid In My Tea chalk art being created during 2014 Festa event.
Squid In My Tea chalk art being created during 2014 Festa event.
Jennifer Ripassa chalk masterpiece is a fantastic female warrior.
Jennifer Ripassa chalk masterpiece is a fantastic female warrior.
Salgado chalk art shows Romulus and Remus, mythical founders of Rome.
Salgado chalk art shows Romulus and Remus, mythical founders of Rome.
Team Parada chalk art eyes appear on a downtown San Diego street.
Team Parada chalk art eyes appear on a downtown San Diego street.
Squadra Terun depicts a wonderful face with Gesso Italiano.
Squadra Terun depicts a wonderful face with Gesso Italiano.
Gary Simpson unfinished chalk artwork of Madonna and child.
Gary Simpson unfinished chalk artwork of Madonna and child.
Aaron Hernandez uses bright colors in this distinctive chalk art.
Aaron Hernandez uses bright colors in this distinctive chalk art.
Here comes a cool sight! Some interactive 3D street art!
Here comes a cool sight! Some interactive 3D street art!
Lilianai Mai created three dimensional chalk art for Festa visitors to enjoy!
Lilianai Mai created three dimensional chalk art for Festa visitors to enjoy!
Brianna Cunha chats with a young person about her fun dog chalk art.
Brianna Cunha chats with a young person about her fun dog chalk art.
Sumart chalk art is very colorful in the Sunday morning light.
Sumart chalk art is very colorful in the Sunday morning light.
Lauren Minadeo is working on a chalk art portrait.
Lauren Minadeo is working on a chalk art portrait.
Valerie Michelle awesome chalk art contains grapes and a dog chef!
Valerie Michelle awesome chalk art contains grapes and a dog chef!
Team Arcala creating some chalk art that includes the Fiat logo.
Team Arcala creating some chalk art that includes the Fiat logo.
Killer Queens chalk art of Mario Kart!
Killer Queens chalk art of Mario Kart!
Moe Notsu was having fun creating this beautiful chalk art masterpiece!
Moe Notsu was having fun creating this beautiful chalk art masterpiece!
Cecelia Ramos Linayao has created many large scale solo works.
Cecelia Ramos Linayao has created many large scale solo works.
Stained glass Madonna from Milan Cathedral will be reproduced.
Stained glass Madonna from Milan Cathedral will be reproduced.
Cecelia is well underway creating the amazing 20 by 30 foot chalk image.
Cecelia is well underway creating the amazing 20 by 30 foot chalk image.
John Vaughn chalk art seems a bit misty and mysterious.
John Vaughn chalk art seems a bit misty and mysterious.
Art Within Reach is creating a landscape of trees using chalk.
Art Within Reach is creating a landscape of trees using chalk.
Lisa Pierre-Davis uses a long stick with chalk tip to outline her work in progress.
Lisa Pierre-Davis uses a long stick with chalk tip to outline her work in progress.
Holly Lynn Schineller chalk art is an homage to the future.
Holly Lynn Schineller chalk art is an homage to the future.
Tonie Garza chalk art of several tender, beautiful faces.
Tonie Garza chalk art of several tender, beautiful faces.
Tiffany Garza is the daughter of Tonie! Her chalk art is really fun!
Tiffany Garza is the daughter of Tonie! Her chalk art is really fun!
Mercedes Molloy shows Disney's Lady and the Tramp with Gesso Italiano.
Mercedes Molloy shows Disney’s Lady and the Tramp with Gesso Italiano.
Chalkolate is creating another awesome Mario using colorful chalk.
Chalkolate is creating another awesome Mario using colorful chalk.
John Vilotti chalk art of a stylish face.
John Vilotti chalk art of a stylish face.
Team Arancio reproduces a classic Cinzano label using carefully applied chalk.
Team Arancio reproduces a classic Cinzano advertisement using carefully applied chalk.
East Meets West and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly in Italian!
East Meets West and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly in Italian!
Byron Houston weaves a windblown flag of Italy with a small stick of chalk.
Byron Houston weaves a windblown flag of Italy with a small stick of chalk.
Kira Lewis-Martinez chalk art of a classic Nativity scene.
Kira Lewis-Martinez chalk art of a classic Nativity scene.
Lisa Bernal Brethour chalk art reproduces sketches of a famous botanist.
Lisa Bernal Brethour chalk art reproduces sketches of a famous botanist.
Lisa Bryson chalk artwork is brimming with yummy pasta!
Lisa Bryson chalk artwork is brimming with yummy pasta!
Team Noni produces unusual abstract chalk art showing biplanes over a cityscape.
Team Noni produces unusual abstract chalk art showing biplanes over a cityscape.
Unknown artist has drawn Dracula using chalk a few weeks before Halloween!
Unknown artist has drawn Dracula using chalk a few weeks before Halloween!
After bending over a lot, I stretch and look down Date Street at the talented artists.
After bending over a lot, I stretch and look down Date Street at the talented artists.
Movingarte is floating a chalk gondola on the dry asphalt canvas.
Movingarte is floating a chalk gondola on the dry asphalt canvas.
Ciao! masquerade chalk art is suitable for the Festa festivities in Little Italy.
Ciao! masquerade chalk art is suitable for the Festa festivities in Little Italy.
Michael Zamora puts the finishing touches on a chalk urn.
Michael Zamora puts the finishing touches on a chalk urn.
United Souls is creating a colorful chalk mosaic that looks like stained glass.
United Souls is creating a colorful chalk mosaic that looks like stained glass.
Jason D Slagle chalk art Vespa is definitely very cool!
Jason D Slagle chalk art Vespa is definitely very cool!
Team Tini-Monster is creating The Muppets including Kermit the Frog!
Team Tini-Monster is creating The Muppets including Kermit the Frog!
Megnificent is bringing a bold face into existence using chalk.
Megnificent is bringing a bold face into existence using chalk.
Team Pinoy chalk art shows face of Jesus on a bible.
Team Pinoy chalk art shows face of Jesus on a bible.
Another look down the street at the absolutely amazing, inspiring art event.
Another look down the street at the absolutely amazing, inspiring art event.

Here comes chalk art created by school kids, which I blogged about yesterday.

Platt College San Diego has made progress since yesterday.
Platt College San Diego has made progress since yesterday.
Canyon Crest Academy creating a classical image with chalk.
Canyon Crest Academy creating a classical image with chalk.
Torrey Pines High School National Art Honor Society made a character out of Italian food!
Torrey Pines High School National Art Honor Society made a character out of Italian food!
Cathedral Catholic High School team still working hard on the chalk masterpiece.
Cathedral Catholic High School team still working hard on the chalk masterpiece.
Santa Fe Christian High School seems finished with scene on a Venice canal.
Santa Fe Christian High School seems finished with scene on a Venice canal.
Roosevelt I.B. Middle School created a fantastic Venetian scene with chalk.
Roosevelt I.B. Middle School created a fantastic Venetian scene with chalk.
Joan MacQueen Middle School is getting started on their Festa chalk art entry.
Joan MacQueen Middle School is getting started on their Festa chalk art entry.
Washington Elementary STEAM Magnet School is half finished an hour before Festa opens.
Washington Elementary STEAM Magnet School is half finished an hour before Festa opens.
Torrey Hills Elementary kids created some really amazing chalk artwork!
Torrey Hills Elementary kids created some really amazing chalk artwork!
Lincoln Acres Art Program chalk art is actually an optical illusion of Mona Lisa!
Lincoln Acres Art Program chalk art is actually an optical illusion of Mona Lisa!
San Pasqual High School chalk art promises to look fantastic.
San Pasqual High School chalk art promises to look fantastic.
Just a flower someone drew on the asphalt for no reason other than pure joy.
Just a flower someone drew on the asphalt for no reason other than pure joy.
Mount Miguel High School students work on a window that seems to open into heaven.
Mount Miguel High School students work on a window that seems to open into heaven.
Lidia F. Vasquez has made great progress on her latest eye-popping masterpiece!
Lidia F. Vasquez has made great progress on her latest eye-popping masterpiece!
Teresa Elliott abstract eyes and face rendered with Gesso Italiano.
Teresa Elliott abstract eyes and face rendered with Gesso Italiano.
This happy sun and moon are just there on the street for no apparent reason!
This happy sun and moon are just there on the street for no apparent reason!
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