Beach life: 1981-1991

OB hippies, San Diego oceanfront lots, Sunset Cliffs deaths, Pacific Beach gangs, the girls of summer

"If you look weird, they stop you and push you up against the wall and search you."
  • "If you look weird, they stop you and push you up against the wall and search you."
  • Image by David Covey

Low Tide at OB

Today, although drug traffic is still heavy, the overall crime rate for serious offenses – including rape and other sex crimes, assault, burglary, robbery, grand theft, auto theft, and petty theft – in Ocean Beach is almost one-third that of Mission Beach (the latest police records, for May and June of this year, show that there were fifty-four serious crimes per census tract in Ocean Beach as opposed to 157 per census tract in Mission Beach).

By Thomas K. Arnold, Aug. 13, 1981 | Read full article

Calumet Avenue at Sea Ridge Drive, Pacific Beach. These lots are a headache to neighbors, a pleasure to beach users, and a plum to real estate agents.

Calumet Avenue at Sea Ridge Drive, Pacific Beach. These lots are a headache to neighbors, a pleasure to beach users, and a plum to real estate agents.

The Last 79

Madeline Wisner owns another lot on Sunset Cliffs, assessed at $36,000. She has no plans for it for now; in fact, she intends to leave it to her daughters. She bought it to protect her house from what she called the "junk" being built on other nearby lots. "This is a beautiful property." she said, "and you shouldn't put a shack on it. Besides, they look nice empty, don't you think?"

By Stephen Simpson, Jan. 21, 1982 | Read full article

Sitting on her towel on Pacific Beach, Karen sang a snatch from the Beach Boys’ “California Girls” and gazed out across the water. “We’re just trying to have some fun before we grow up and have to go to work every day.”

Sitting on her towel on Pacific Beach, Karen sang a snatch from the Beach Boys’ “California Girls” and gazed out across the water. “We’re just trying to have some fun before we grow up and have to go to work every day.”

The Girls of Summer

Even though most people from Ashley and Rebecca’s school go to the beach at south Mission — and Ashley and Rebecca sometimes go there, too — the two girls also drive over to La Jolla Shores several times each week. Tall, slender Rebecca’s two-piece aqua suit revealed her long, narrow waistline. Her features hinted at the Eurasian good looks of Forties movie stars Jennifer Jones and Myrna Loy. Her manner was that of a great and elegant lady.

By Judith Moore, Aug. 28, 1986 | Read full article

Three months ago, a twenty-year-old sailor fell thirty feet to his death from the gritty cliff surface near the intersection of Froude Street and Sunset Cliffs Boulevard.

Three months ago, a twenty-year-old sailor fell thirty feet to his death from the gritty cliff surface near the intersection of Froude Street and Sunset Cliffs Boulevard.

The Deadly View from Sunset Cliffs

“We used to average about a hundred calls a year,” he says, “but in 1986 it was down to sixty-nine, and in 1987, there were only forty-three.” These figures include all cliff rescue calls on city beaches, of which accidents on Sunset Cliffs account for roughly one-fifth. Karns attributes the decrease to signs posted along the cliffs: Unstable Cliffs — Stay Back, Frequent Cave-ins, Sheer Drop-off, and False Trail, which were installed about four years ago.”

By Carol Bowers, May 19, 1988 | Read full article

One Tuna Boy rammed a car driven by a guy wearing a University of San Diego High School letterman’s jacket; when the high schooler got out of his car, the Tuna Boy beat him up.

One Tuna Boy rammed a car driven by a guy wearing a University of San Diego High School letterman’s jacket; when the high schooler got out of his car, the Tuna Boy beat him up.

Surf and Turf

What they like to do: Fight. Nonlocals and skateboarders, particularly members of the O.B. Rats, are popular targets. A few weeks ago, one Tuna Boy rammed a car driven by a guy wearing a University of San Diego High School letterman’s jacket; when the high schooler got out of his car, the Tuna Boy beat him up. They also like to crash parties.

Hangouts: The parking lot outside Stump’s Market on Voltaire Street.

By Thomas K. Arnold, Aug. 1, 1991 | Read full article

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