Free $250K Gift of Art to City: Three Say No!

In a vote of 3—Terry Gaasterland, Tracy Martinez, Dan Quirk— to 2, the sculpture “Octetra” by internationally known artist Isamu Noguchi, offered at no cost to the city, was turned down at the Monday, May 1 City Council meeting that was set to clarify the procedure for public comment on possible sculptures, a 60-day period previously unanimously agreed upon by the City Council.   On Thursday afternoon, April 27, Hershell Price had sent out an email in advance of the May 1 City Council meeting falsely stating that a private citizen not on the Arts Advisory Committee (AAC) led the

This Arts Advisory Committee rough mockup (not to exact scale) shows Octetra in the proposed Civic Center plaza location.
This Arts Advisory Committee rough mockup (not to exact scale) shows Octetra in the proposed Civic Center plaza location.

Recent Letters

Say it isn’t so!

May 23, 2023 - Robin Vanderlaan
When I read that the City Council had turned down a donation of a sculpture by Isamu Noguchi I thought maybe this wasn’t THE Isamu Noguchi? But then I saw a photo of the Noguchi on offer in the Sandpiper . How is it possible that a town known for it’s mid century design. architects and architecture failed to grasp the significance of this piece?


Our Council Cancels Culture

May 16, 2023 - Art Olson
While travelling in the U.K., walking the rugged coastal landscapes of the Shetland Islands and enjoying the cultural riches of London, our joy was unfortunately disturbed. Watching the recent Del Mar City Council meeting on public art for our Civic Center, my wife and I gasped in disbelief as councilmember and lapsed ballerina Terry Gaasterland politically pirouetted with her two Council cohorts, Tracy Martinez and


Guest Editorial: Citizens Sidelined

Since incorporating in 1959, Del Mar has depended on citizen participation and volunteerism. In fact, we expect it. We have always been fortunate to have an outsized share of expertise in many areas – science, medicine,


Fairgrounds Housing Scenarios?

As the City continues to work on a program to place affordable housing at the Fairgrounds, several “scenarios” are being studied that are located on a southeastern site near the Fire Station on Jimmy Durante Blvd.


Critters: Snake in the Grass

San Diego County hosts some 25 species of snakes, a few quite rare, and some that are known to be “sustainable” solutions to controlling pests, most specifically our plentiful rat population.   Snakes diets include pesky,


Sustainability: Tush Tales

As we scrutinize our lives to minimize our environmental footprint by reducing and reusing, there is an area where our North American culture can benefit from an upgrade. Yes, I am writing about the miles of


Grid Gridlock

Solar and wind energy are essential for supplying more electric power to the grid. But there is another obstacle that currently is limiting how much clean energy gets onto the grid. There is a long queue


Del Mar Community Connections

The Scoop: Ice Cream Social 2023 DMCC’s Social and Good Times Committee hosted the third annual Ice Cream Social on April 28 at the Del Mar Civic Center. It was another successful event, with 80 people


In Brief

Affordability First

On June 5, the City Council is slated to introduce an ordinance implementing Senate Bill 9, a State law enacted in January 2022 that allows a qualifying lot zoned for one unit to be subdivided into two parcels, with up to two residential units allowed on each new parcel. State law prohibits discretionary review of SB 9 applications, but does allow objective development and design standards to be applied. The ordinance “seeks to mitigate SB 9’s impacts to maintain community character in neighborhoods zoned for one dwelling per lot,” according to the City’s website. The Planning Commission reviewed the draft ordinance on May 9, and favored a requirement that the first (or one) “SB 9” unit on any R-1 lot be required to be dedicated for affordable housing; it is unclear whether or how that recommendation will be incorporated into the ordinance.

Lunch at the Farmers Market now open at 12 noon on Saturdays. Photo by Julie Maxey-Allison.
Construction has begun at the alley of the Hillstone Restaurant (formerly Bully’s) site on Camino del Mar. Photo by Julie Maxey-Allison.

Blooming Bad

Those stunning displays of spectacular thick bushed yellow flowers, Sahara or black mustards, that carpeted fields after our extravagant winter rains are in fact invaders set to take over territories and potential fire hazards. These non-natives, quick to propagate, kill off our native flowers by crowding them out. Their dried up bushes turn into fuel for fires. How to control the spread of these fatal flowers: detection and prevention and removal. Volunteers?

Rock A Way Beach