Alcohol-free zone proposed | Combative drinkers make Ocean Beach unsafe, surfers’ `team mom’ says

November 22, 2006 1 Comment

Jeanette Steele. The San Diego Union – Tribune. San Diego, Calif.: Nov 22, 2006. pg. B.1

At the foot of Newport Avenue, wetsuit-wearing students from the Point Loma High School surf team congregate at the Ocean Beach sea wall.

Julie Klein is a “team mom,” meaning she watches over the surfers as they catch waves at Tuesday and Thursday afternoon practices.

Saying her surfers are tired of being harassed by drinkers, Klein is pushing to create an alcohol-free “recreation zone” over about half of the Ocean Beach sand.

“The families would like to take the beach back,” said Klein, an Ocean Beach resident. “Give us an area. We have the right to choose not to drink. We don’t want to walk through it.”

Opponents say they don’t want to segregate the beach because of a few problem drinkers.

But Klein points to a knot of men and women lounging farther down the sea wall. Both old and young, some do tricks on skateboards, some smoke, some wear the tattered clothes of street people. Klein and one young surfer said they have been punched by combative drunks.

“This is what we have to deal with,” she said. “The first thing you see in this wonderful town is usually people drinking at the foot of Newport.”

Klein — a member of Councilman Kevin Faulconer’s recently formed task force on beach-alcohol issues — has collected 500 signatures supporting an alcohol-free zone between the pier and Saratoga Park, at the foot of Saratoga Avenue. The ban would be lifted on major holidays such as Fourth of July.

She said she hopes Faulconer and the rest of the council will champion the idea. If so, it would be a foot in the door for the on-again off-again movement to curtail drinking alcohol at San Diego’s beaches.

The debate has reawakened in Pacific Beach and Mission Beach, where earlier this year town councils voted to back an alcohol ban on the sand. In 2002, voters citywide killed a test ban on portions of those two beaches by a narrow margin.

Opponents of a ban say Klein’s idea is a bad one because it would create a segregated Ocean Beach, which is already a small stretch of sand by San Diego standards.

“As the population grows, beaches will become more crowded,” said Jeremy Malecha, president of Free PB, which opposes more restrictions at parks and beaches.

“It’s counter to the spirit of openness that San Diego beaches represent,” said Malecha, who also sits on the alcohol task force. “Where do you draw the line? I know plenty of adults who are turned off by kids screaming and throwing sand. Are we going to create an adults-only beach?”

Faulconer says issues like the recreation zone idea will be discussed by his task force, which holds its second public meeting Monday. “My goal is to look at whether there is consensus and common ground that we can find,” he said.

Opinions around Ocean Beach seem mixed.

Former City Council candidate Rich Grosch called the zone idea a reasonable compromise.

“A lot of people are against a ban, but this is a partial ban,” said Grosch, who owns the Ocean Beach Hotel on Newport. “People come down and they are intimidated by these guys who are drinking. Those are the only steps going down to the beach.”

At the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association, director Denny Knox said she’s torn. “It’s a handful of people causing the problem, so why punish everyone?” Know asked. However, she added, “We do want to take our beach back.”

San Diego Police Capt. Sarah Creighton said she sympathizes with team parents who feel they need to safeguard their surfers. Alcoholic transients are attracted to the sea wall, Creighton said, and her officers get calls about drunks there.

However, while she called the recreation zone “a very good idea,” she said it is not clear that Ocean Beach attracts more drunks than other beaches.

Some young surfers say they’ve seen enough.

“We’re trying to have a surf team, we want to stay clean, and they are bringing it into our environment,” said Brennan Clark, a 16- year-old team member. “It’s just not cool.”
[Illustration]
4 PICS; Caption: 1. Members of the Point Loma High School surf team gathered near the parking lot at Ocean Beach to prepare for their practice. Some of the surfers say they have been harassed by drinkers in the area. 2. “Team mom” Julie Klein is a member of Councilman Kevin Faulconer’s beach-alcohol task force and is gathering signatures to create an alcohol-free “recreation zone.” 3. Andrew Scribner, 14 (left), and Chet Cleator, 15 of Point Loma High School prepared to practice with their surf team. 4. Teo Dinger (left), Ralph West, Lou Ghio, Adrian Vusick, Julie Klein and Cooper Nielsen judged a practice heat of the Point Loma High School surf team. (Eds. R,C); Credit: 1-4. Laura Embry / Union-Tribune photos

Credit: STAFF WRITER

Beach Ordinance
One Comments to “Alcohol-free zone proposed | Combative drinkers make Ocean Beach unsafe, surfers’ `team mom’ says”
  1. oblocal says:

    I can understand the discomfort experienced by those interviewed in this article by people being disruptive and rabblerousing at the ‘foot of newport’, but unless you are actually on the beach, drinking is already illegal there on ‘the wall’. Most of these people in question causing distubances are not simply people drinking alcohol, but ‘street kids’ and the ‘professional’ homeless. Many of these people in question may be drinking on the beach, but I would venture a guess that at least 50% are tweaking, tripping, and/or doping (etc..) on a regular basis. And to Brennan Clark, if you want to stay clean – you have the right to do that and I commend it. One way or the other, eventually you will need to accept that we are all human and have a right to exist in what you call “your environment”. Tolerance is a virtue. Alcohol is legal. So is surfing, but what if I was a sponger? Do I have less of a right to be in the water just because you might look down upon me or be inconvenienced or uncomfortable with my presence ( safety aside – i do understand the reasons behind the surf/swim-boogieboard zone separation )? I don’t think the ban addresses the relevant issues at hand and brought up by its proponents. * steps off soapbox *

Leave a Reply


Advisory: Hot Prowl Burglary in PB (aka Man Standing in Sleeping Woman’s Bedroom)

The San Diego Police Department Sex Crimes Unit is currently investigating a hot prowl burglary that occurred near the...

Holiday Week Checkpoints

The Friday, July 5, DUI checkpoint was conducted in the 2600 block of Ingraham Street, and was operational from...

Alcohol Industry Playbook – Confidential

Here’s a handbook illustrating the strategies some bar and restaurant owners use to deflect attention away from their businesses....

Pacific Beach Shore Club Deck Expansion

I want to encourage good businesses in Pacific Beach but, feel like the lack of state and local oversight...

34 Arrested Across 2 DUI Checkpoints

The San Diego Police Department and the San Diego County Probation Department conducted two DUI checkpoints Saturday night that...

Yet Another Police Officer Injured in Drunk Driver Crash

SAN DIEGO – A suspected drunken driver was arrested early Tuesday after he plowed through a stop sign and...

UPDATE: Bad (horrible) day in Pacific Beach – man seriously injured by alleged DUI driver dies

At 9:45 am in Pacific Beach at the busiest intersection in San Diego was nearly entirely closed down for...

5 injured in car accident in Pacific Beach this morning – Possible DUI

Five people are injured after a black Nissan Titan ran a red light in Pacific Beach at around 9:45...

Priest arrested on suspicion of DUI after driving car into building

Ed. Note: My intent is to not be publicly shaming anyone. I wouldn’t normally post this if the fact...

Current Situation and Proposal

This site illustrates problems in a neighborhood of alcohol outlets that are highly concentrated – Pacific Beach. For our...

San Diego police say an overnight DUI checkpoint in Pacific Beach nets 12 arrests

612 vehicles passed through checkpoint An overnight sobriety and driver license checkpoint in Pacific Beach netted 12 arrests for...

Car Crashes into PB Home

Mercedes rammed nearly halfway through the house A suspected drunk driver lost control and crashed into a home in...

DUI checkpoints planned over holiday weekend

The San Diego Police Department Traffic Unit will be conducting DUI and drivers license checkpoints at undisclosed locations within...

Pedestrians injured in drunk driving hit-and-run

A man is seriously injured after being hit by a drunk driver in Pacific Beach overnight. A man and...

Bullocks – PB’s Newest Billboard – ~1,100 Sq. Ft.?

Bullocks to this. It looks like the former Jack Daniels billboard, which took over about 1,100 sq. ft. of...

Man jailed after ramming police car in Pacific Beach

A man landed in jail Sunday hours after San Diego police say he beat and choked his girlfriend in...

Garnet Avenue DUI checkpoint nets (14) arrests

San Diego Police officers arrested 14 suspected drunken drivers and impounded 15 cars last night during a DUI Checkpoint...

SDPD Weekend DUI Checkpoints Net 34 Arrests (16 in PB), 37 Impounds

The San Diego Police Department Traffic Division conducted DUI checkpoints on Friday September 7, 2012, and on Saturday, September...

SDPD Labor Day Weekend DUI Checkpoints Net 28 DUI Arrests

The San Diego Police Department conducted three DUI checkpoints during the Labor Day Holiday weekend. The checkpoints were made...

Suspected drunk driver runs over friend

A suspected drunk driver is behind bars after hitting a woman while backing out of a parking space in...

16 Arrested at Pacific Beach DUI Checkpoint

San Diego police in Pacific Beach arrested 16 people on suspicion of drunken driving and impounded 17 vehicles during...

Pacific Beach Checkpoint Nets 6 Arrests

Six people were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs at an overnight checkpoint...

Pacific Beach DUI Checkpoint Nets 16 Arrests, 17 Vehicles Impounded

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego police arrested 16 drivers on suspicion of drunken driving and impounded 17 vehicles...

Woman Injured In Hit-And-Run In Pacific Beach

Woman Was Crossing Street At Grand Avenue, Cass Street PACIFIC BEACH, Calif. — A woman was rushed to the...

Suspected DUI crash shuts down Ingraham in PB

View more videos at: http://nbcsandiego.com. Source: NBCSanDiego.com View a slideshow from 10News San Diego. UT San Diego Report on...

Jack Daniels Gets in on the Action

One issue with all the alcohol problems we experience is we draw even more marketers of alcohol products. Just...

Police Searching For Hit-And-Run Driver In PB Crash

SAN DIEGO — Police on Tuesday are searching for a hit-and-run driver who hit at least two vehicles in...

(DUI Crash) Driver ordered to pay friend’s medical costs

Driver ordered to pay friend’s medical costs A judge ordered a drunken driver to pay more than $7,500 in...

San Diego police arrest 9 DUI suspects during St. Patty’s Day checkpoints

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego police officers arrested nine suspected drunken drivers at a downtown checkpoint and extra...

Suspected DUI driver runs over woman lying in Hillcrest alley

A suspected drunken driver allegedly ran over a 27-year-old woman who was lying in a Hillcrest alley early Saturday,...

Woman Found Unconscious In PB May Have Been (Sexually) Assaulted

22-Year-Old Found Drunk, Partially Nude In Alley A 22-year-old woman found drunk, unconscious and partially nude in a Pacific...

Coronado Residents Concerned Over Alcohol Permits – San Diego News Story – KGTV San Diego

Some longtime Coronado residents are concerned that their town could soon mimic the bar scene in Pacific Beach or...

PB Shore Club wins Expansion bid

The Pacific Beach Shore Club was approved by the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) to expand their premises onto a...

Rally, walk targets Proliferation of alcohol permits in PB

Concerned citizens walk past Crystal Pier on Jan. 27 on their way up Garnet Avenue to get their message...

Judgment Finalized In Legal Battle Over Golden Hill MAD

The judgment is final. Now, a group of residents in Golden Hill and South Park — who have spent...

Charger sued in 2009 bottle incident

A man has filed a lawsuit against San Diego Chargers linebacker Shaun Phillips alleging the player broke a Champagne...

Man Seriously Hurt In Pacific Beach Hit-And-Run

Man Had Just Got Out Of Taxi, Hit By Toyota Yaris, Police Say SAN DIEGO — A 28-year-old man...

Shots Reportedly Fired In Pacific Beach

Shots Reported Fired In 1800 Block Of Hornblend Street POSTED: 7:38 am PST January 19, 2012 SAN DIEGO —...

US ‘drunk driver’ swims off to escape arrest

This is an update of the story below. This story also made international news agencies also shown below. SAN...

Drunk in PB at 2AM? Cops in the Rear View Mirror? Ditch the Car, Disappear in the Ocean!

SAN DIEGO — Authorities searched for hours early Tuesday for a man suspected of drunken driving who ran away...

PB Resident Fights Bar’s Plans To Expand

See the video SAN DIEGO — A Pacific Beach resident told 10News on Tuesday he has proof that too...

3 Checkpoints Net 12 Drunken Driving Arrests

SAN DIEGO — Three checkpoints set up in Pacific Beach, Imperial Beach and Chula Vista overnight netted 12 suspected...

(DUI) Driver Crashes Into Fire Hydrant, Parked Car In PB (at 11am)

A suspected drunken driver was taken into custody Friday after crashing into a fire hydrant and a parked car...

Drunk man breaks into 81 Year Old PB woman’s home

An elderly woman in Pacific Beach woke up Friday morning to find a man in a Chargers jersey sleeping...

Pacific Beach Checkpoint Nets 12 Arrests

SAN DIEGO — San Diego police arrested a dozen people on suspicion of drunken driving and impounded nine vehicles...

Letter: San Diego’s Continuing Taxi Cab Scandal

This is a letter to the editor in response to the article by former Superior Court Judge Larry Sterling...

Another DUI Crash in PB

Early this morning an drunk driver crashed and most likely totaled a parked car on Grand Ave. at Mission...

Bike Police Catch 3 Armed Robbers in PB

Here’s a great story about police catching armed robbers utilizing their bicycle patrols. We’re trying to raise funds to...

KPBS Interview Community Leader, Businessman and ABC

This afternoon KPBS Radio featured a story on the PB Planning Group’s report on the alcohol licensing and CUP...

Officer Hurt After Car Crashes Into Police Car

...