Quotes on the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade.

Walking past a plaque which is engraved with one of many important quotes by Martin Luther King Jr.
Walking past a plaque which is engraved with one of many important quotes by Martin Luther King Jr.

I frequently walk along the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego. Whenever I do, I like to randomly read some of the historic MLK quotes that are engraved in plaques along the long pathway. I’ve never counted the number of quotes. There are easily dozens. Every quote on every plaque is important and powerful, and reflects the intelligence, energy, optimism and wisdom of America’s great civil rights leader.

Here are photos taken at different times of a few of Dr. King’s quotes…

Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed.
Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed.
The deep rumbling of discontent that we hear today is the thunder of disinherited masses, rising from dungeons of oppression to the bright hills of freedom in one majestic chorus.
The deep rumbling of discontent that we hear today is the thunder of disinherited masses, rising from dungeons of oppression to the bright hills of freedom in one majestic chorus.
Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.
Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.
We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the Earth like brothers.
We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the Earth like brothers.
Two people walk side-by-side down the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego.
Two people walk side-by-side down the Martin Luther King Jr. Promenade in downtown San Diego.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.
The democratic ideal of freedom and equality will be fulfilled for all--or all human beings will share in the resulting social and spiritual doom...
The democratic ideal of freedom and equality will be fulfilled for all–or all human beings will share in the resulting social and spiritual doom…
The greatest victory of the civil rights period was something internal...We armed ourselves with dignity and self-respect...We straightened our backs up...
The greatest victory of the civil rights period was something internal…We armed ourselves with dignity and self-respect…We straightened our backs up…
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
Any law that uplifts human personality is just, any law that degrades human personality is unjust.
Any law that uplifts human personality is just, any law that degrades human personality is unjust.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
Breaking the Chains sculpture, by Melvin Edwards, reminds people on MLK Promenade of the positive legacy of a great civil rights leader.
Breaking the Chains sculpture, by Melvin Edwards, reminds people on MLK Promenade of the positive legacy of a great civil rights leader.

Photos of cool sculptures at Liberty Station.

Mother by Robert Michael Jones appears complex and incomplete. According to the artist, his unusual sculptures represent ongoing life stories.
Mother by Robert Michael Jones appears complex and incomplete. According to the artist, his unusual sculptures represent ongoing life stories.

I still have a bunch of photos to share from my long walk around Liberty Station several weeks ago!

Check out these cool sculptures! I stumbled upon them while wandering about the North Promenade area of the old Naval Training Center San Diego. NTC Liberty Station, with its rich history, unique architecture, many museums and fun public art, is a great place to absorb a whole lot of culture and beauty.

Runner by Robert Michael Jones with strange muscle, bone and energy. Three pieces by this artist stand in front of NTC Liberty Station's Barracks 14.
Runner by Robert Michael Jones with strange muscle, bone and energy. Three pieces by this artist stand in front of NTC Liberty Station’s Barracks 14.
Close up photo of Ascend by Robert Michael Jones. His works seem like frayed, ancient images of human struggle from mythology.
Close up photo of Ascend by Robert Michael Jones. His works seem like frayed, ancient images of human struggle from mythology.
Archimage by Jeffery Laudenslager, whose sculptures often use odd geometry to boggle the mind. This piece, near the Dance Place, won an Orchid award in 1999.
Archimage by Jeffery Laudenslager, whose sculptures often use odd geometry to boggle the mind. This piece, near the Dance Place, won an Orchid award in 1999.
Sol Searching by Alber De Matteis was part of an Urban Tree exhibition on San Diego's Embarcadero. It's now situated on Truxton Road south of the Dance Place building.
Sol Searching by Alber De Matteis was part of an Urban Tree exhibition on San Diego’s Embarcadero. It’s now situated on Truxton Road south of the Dance Place building.
Archangel by famed Mexican sculptor Alfonso Arambula Robles. It's located between two converted barracks at the former Naval Training Center San Diego.
Archangel by famed Mexican sculptor Alfonso Arambula Robles. It’s located between two converted barracks at the former Naval Training Center San Diego.
Sisterhood by Ashley Gardner stands next to the Women's Museum of California.
Sisterhood by Ashley Gardner stands next to the Women’s Museum of California.
Two life-size sisters greet visitors who wander about Point Loma's art-filled Liberty Station.
Two life-size sisters greet visitors who wander about Point Loma’s art-filled Liberty Station.

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Spreading cheer and good deeds in San Diego.

Birds take flight above palm trees in downtown San Diego.
Birds take flight above palm trees in downtown San Diego.

The astonishing success of this modest blog is hard to believe. Thank you.

Some time ago, I decided Cool San Diego Sights would never be about making money. This blog’s purpose is simple. It is to enjoy San Diego, to spread a little sunshine, and to help people who are doing good deeds or undertaking worthy causes.

Here are a few charitable organizations that would be grateful for your assistance:

Spreckels Organ raises funds for Operation Rebound.

Cool Corvette car show benefits San Diego USO.

Art made of coins helps Rady Children’s Hospital!

Glean Queens of San Diego need your help!

Help Westview High School Music Outreach succeed!

Fill the Boot in San Diego to help burn victims!

San Diego breast cancer walkers: the final mile!

Wasted grocery food turns to art in Balboa Park.

20 Ways To Help the Homeless in San Diego.

Kids’ NewsDay benefits Rady Children’s Hospital!

Habitat for Humanity builds a house downtown!

San Diegans donate used textiles for charity.

Here are some more thoughts:

Writing a blog opens up an amazing world.

Walk with me on my fun blog and discover random cool stuff!  I’d be honored if you followed Cool San Diego Sights on Twitter or Facebook!

Spreckels Organ raises funds for Operation Rebound.

Jeff, a challenged athlete who benefits from Operation Rebound, at a special marathon Spreckels Organ concert.
Jeff, a challenged athlete who benefits from Operation Rebound, at a special marathon Spreckels Organ concert.

Right now I’m sitting at my computer on Cortez Hill, not far from Balboa Park. Sometimes I imagine–for a brief moment–that I can hear music drifting in through the window. Whether my ears are deceiving me or not, I do know that the huge Spreckels Organ is booming across the beloved urban park at this very exact moment.

How do I know this? Because San Diego’s own Civic Organist, Dr. Carol Williams, is playing the king of musical instruments today for twelve and a half hours straight! In addition to setting a new official Guinness World Record for organ playing, she’s raising money for Operation Rebound!

Operation Rebound is a division of the Challenged Athletes Foundation. They help American military personnel, veterans and first responders who face permanent disability, but who have a passion to compete in sports.  An active lifestyle can help greatly when it comes to both mental and physical health.  Here is their website.

The unique event today at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion helps to raise money, so that wounded warriors can obtain expensive prosthetics, specialized equipment, and funds for travel as they compete in sporting tournaments.

It is a most worthy cause.

You can donate right now!  Even a few bucks helps!  To do so, click here!

Operation Rebound table had images of wounded warriors who have turned or returned to sport. This organization helps challenged athletes with their expenses.
Operation Rebound table had images of wounded warriors who have turned or returned to sport. This organization helps challenged athletes with their expenses.
Dr. Carol Williams, San Diego's Civic Organist, is playing for over 12 hours to help raise money, plus set a new world record!
Dr. Carol Williams, San Diego’s Civic Organist, is playing for over 12 hours to help raise money, plus to set a new world record!
The beautiful Spreckels Organ Pavilion in Balboa Park was the scene of an important Memorial Day weekend event.
The beautiful Spreckels Organ Pavilion in Balboa Park is the scene of an important Memorial Day weekend event.
Jeff talks movingly about how Operation Rebound has helped him. Wounded warriors who engage in sports often need funds for prosthetics, travel to tournaments and special equipment.
Jeff talks movingly about how Operation Rebound has helped him. Wounded warriors who engage in sports often need funds for prosthetics, travel to tournaments, and special equipment.
At a table nearby, people were creating greeting cards that thank our troops for sacrificing for our freedom.
At a table nearby, people were creating greeting cards that thank our troops for sacrificing for our freedom.
One handmade heartfelt card reads--You Rock! Thank you for your bravery, dedication, and amazing strength.
One handmade heartfelt card reads: You Rock! Thank you for your bravery, dedication, and amazing strength.

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Students interview veterans for USS Midway exhibit.

Visitor to USS Midway Museum on Memorial Day weekend absorbs Portraits of Resilience exhibit, created by students of High Tech High Charter School.
Visitor to USS Midway Museum on Memorial Day weekend absorbs Portraits of Resilience exhibit, created by students of High Tech High Charter School.

This morning I walked a little around the USS Midway. The historic aircraft carrier is now a popular museum docked on San Diego Bay. I was there because it’s Memorial Day weekend, and I have personal experiences that make me grateful for America and our brave servicepeople. But I won’t blog about that here.

I was surprised to see a thought-provoking exhibit being set up in the hangar deck of the Midway. I learned it was a project of students at High Tech High, which is a charter school in Point Loma. 50 students interviewed 50 veterans, to learn about war, and peace, and human resiliency.

I took some photos in less-than-optimal lighting, and my flash wasn’t entirely helpful, so I had to apply a good deal of contrast.

I urge you to check out the Portraits of Resilience website.

Portraits of Resilience. 50 students. 50 veterans. 50 powerful portraits.
Portraits of Resilience. 50 students. 50 veterans. 50 powerful portraits.
The whole point of the Armed Forces is to protect freedoms so that people can agree or disagree with what's going on.
The whole point of the Armed Forces is to protect freedoms so that people can agree or disagree with what’s going on.
Greatness isn't achieved randomly. You need to set goals.
Greatness isn’t achieved randomly. You need to set goals.
It's people. It was always people. I didn't want to let anyone down.
It’s people. It was always people. I didn’t want to let anyone down.
A veteran reads words of memory and wisdom spoken by others who've served in the military.
A veteran reads words of pain, joy, memory and wisdom spoken by others who’ve served in the military.
Everything is written in pencil. As soon as you have a plan, thirty minutes later it changes.
Everything is written in pencil. As soon as you have a plan, thirty minutes later it changes.
Don't waste your time worrying, worrying, worrying! You're only going to get wrinkles!
Don’t waste your time worrying, worrying, worrying! You’re only going to get wrinkles!
My best decision was marrying my wife. My number two was being a pilot and getting my wings.
My best decision was marrying my wife. My number two was being a pilot and getting my wings.
No matter how your grades are what people thank about you, do what you want to do and you can accomplish it.
No matter how your grades are or what people think about you, do what you want to do and you can accomplish it.
We didn't have names of battles. We had excursions, and we had firefights, but we didn't have names of them.
We didn’t have names of battles. We had excursions, and we had firefights, but we didn’t have names of them.
When you return, things are physically and emotionally different. It's like moving from one world to another.
When you return, things are physically and emotionally different. It’s like moving from one world to another.
They had tears of joy, they couldn't believe that someone had documented what they had done; they were proud, they were happy.
They had tears of joy, they couldn’t believe that someone had documented what they had done; they were proud, they were happy.
You're watching his back, he's watching your back.
You’re watching his back, he’s watching your back.
Now when somebody says, "Thank you for your service", I look them directly in the eye and say, "It was my privilege".
Now when somebody says, “Thank you for your service”, I look them directly in the eye and say, “It was my privilege”.

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World War II vets honored on USS Midway.

Grossmont High School NJROTC Ceremonial Color Guard waits for this morning's program to begin.
Grossmont High School NJROTC Ceremonial Color Guard waits for an important event to begin.

This morning I attended a moving ceremony. Americans who fought in World War II, members of The Greatest Generation, were honored in a special Veterans Wreath Ceremony on the flight deck of the USS Midway Museum. It’s one of several events taking place on the USS Midway this Memorial Day weekend. San Diego’s popular aircraft carrier museum promises to be a very busy hub of activity.

I took a few photographs of the ceremony. It was short, but very meaningful.

People cross flight deck of USS Midway aircraft carrier museum to attend a special Memorial Day weekend event. Chairs are for a Wynonna Judd Judd performance later this evening.
People cross flight deck of USS Midway aircraft carrier museum to attend a special Memorial Day weekend event. (Chairs are for a Wynonna Judd concert later this evening.)
Looking south over San Diego Bay from upper deck of USS Midway Museum.
Looking south over San Diego Bay from upper deck of USS Midway Museum. Unconditional Surrender statue can be seen below.
Pomerado Community Band plays music before start of short ceremony that honors World War II veterans.
Pomerado Community Band plays music before start of short ceremony that honors World War II veterans.
God Bless America sung with a deep, resonant voice. Many in the crowd listen with emotion.
God Bless America sung with a deep, resonant voice. Many in the crowd listen with emotion.
Guests are ready for the special Memorial Day weekend Veterans Wreath Ceremony to begin.
Guests are ready for the special Memorial Day weekend Veterans Wreath Ceremony to begin.
There are two wreaths. One commemorates those who fought in World War II's Pacific Ocean theater. The second wreath is dedicated to those who served in Europe.
There are two wreaths. One commemorates those who fought in the World War II Pacific theater. The second wreath is dedicated to those who served in Europe.
This honored vet performed his duty in the Pacific during the Second World War. With him are two other generations.
This honored vet performed his duty in the Pacific during the Second World War. With him are two other generations.
This energetic vet helped bring peace to Europe, defeating Nazis and fascists who threatened human liberty.
This energetic vet helped bring peace to Europe, defeating Nazis and fascists who threatened human liberty.
Vintage World War II P-35 fighter aircraft from Air Group One (San Diego Wing of the Commemorative Air Force) flies over during the ceremony.
Vintage World War II P-35 fighter aircraft from Air Group One (San Diego Wing of the Commemorative Air Force) flies over during the ceremony.
The wreaths are presented to the two representative veterans, who will toss them into the water.
The wreaths are presented to the two representative veterans, who will toss them into the water.
In a time-honored ritual and tribute, the first wreath takes flight as many watch.
In a time-honored ritual and tribute, the first wreath takes flight as many watch and The Remembrance Bell is rung.
Flowers and memories float on San Diego Bay on this beautiful Memorial Day weekend.
Flowers and memories float on San Diego Bay on this beautiful Memorial Day weekend.
A photo from the flight deck of the USS Midway. The historic aircraft carrier is used for many military ceremonies in San Diego.
A photo from the flight deck of the USS Midway. The historic aircraft carrier is used for many military ceremonies in San Diego.

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Some pics of Balboa Park restoration in progress.

Two fountains near the reflecting pool, at either end of the Botanical Building, have fallen into disrepair.
Two fountains near the reflecting pool, at either end of the Botanical Building, have fallen into disrepair.

This year Balboa Park is celebrating its centennial. A hundred years ago, for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition, many event structures were created out of plaster, with the idea that they would be temporary. But San Diego fell in love with the park as it was and changed its mind. It would be a shame to lose so much beauty. Today much of Balboa Park, after many years of maintenance and restoration, is like a glowing vision preserved from San Diego’s past. But time marches on. And more work always needs to be done.

During a quick walk this afternoon through Balboa Park, I paused to look at some construction that is underway near the monumental El Cid statue, at the south edge of the Plaza de Panama. A friendly guy who was working there told me a little bit about three current restoration projects.

Here are my pics! Please read the captions, where I provide some more information.

Funds for many Centennial restorations and improvements have been provided by the Friends of Balboa Park.
Funds for many Centennial restorations and improvements have been provided by the Friends of Balboa Park.
Plaque recalls how the second identical plaster fountain (next to the Timken Museum of Art) was restored back in 1965 by The Thursday Club.
Plaque recalls how a second identical fountain (next to the Timken Museum of Art) was restored back in 1965 by The Thursday Club.
The passage of time has been unkind to the impish faces on two fun Balboa Park fountains.
The passage of time has been unkind to the impish faces on two fun Balboa Park fountains.
One of two guardhouses on either side of El Prado, at the west end of the Cabrillo Bridge.
One of two guardhouses on either side of El Prado, at the west end of the Cabrillo Bridge.
The stately guardhouses are being repaired this summer. The plaster ornamentation on top is in bad shape.
The stately guardhouses are being repaired this summer. The plaster ornamentation on top is in bad shape.
A close look at the plaster artwork at the top of one guardhouse's tile roof. The hundred year old material has crumbled.
A close up photo of the plaster finial at the apex of one tile roof. The hundred year old material has crumbled.
The decorative finial has already been removed from the second guardhouse, and is being reconstructed.
The decorative finial has already been removed from the second guardhouse, and is being reconstructed.
Guy working on restoring the balustrade next to the El Cid statue. The walkway will now be ADA accessible.
Guy working on restoring the balustrade next to the El Cid statue. The walkway will soon be ADA accessible.
The old wooden balustrade is being replaced with modern material that should last much longer. Hopefully another hundred years!
The old wooden balustrade is being replaced with modern material that should last much longer. Hopefully another hundred years!
This hard-working guy at the balustrade construction site was nice enough to talk to me and smile for the camera!
This hard-working guy at the balustrade construction site was nice enough to talk to me and smile for the camera!

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