After more than two-and-a-half years of the COVID-19 pandemic, the public health threat is subsiding and we are slowly reemerging from social isolation into a changed world, where so much of our work and social interactions remain virtual. In a small, tight-knit community like Del Mar, many of us have lost touch with some of our long-time neighbors, and have yet to get to know those who have recently moved in. The Del Mar Community Alliance (DMCA), which is the non-profit entity that publishes the Sandpiper, has recognized that re-establishing neighbor contact and cohesion is important from both a personal and community perspective. Personal neighbor contact can be a life-line or source of support in times of need, and is the glue that helps sustain the unique and beautiful place in which we have chosen to live. To that end, the DMCA has established a program to bring neighbors together again, to get to know each other better, to enjoy each other’s company, and to reflect on our hopes, concerns, and issues regarding our experiences as Del Mar residents.
Part of the Del Mar Community Alliance’s mission is to advocate for the principles and goals of the Del Mar Community Plan and to help protect the community character and natural resources of Del Mar and its environs. To that end, we have formed a Neighborhood Outreach Committee (of which I’m the current Chair). Our charge is to encourage and facilitate local gatherings in homes around Del Mar to bring neighbors back together. We are committed to support such gatherings by recruiting hosts and providing them with the needed help and supplies that such social events require. These neighborhood gatherings are intended to bring together neighbors for a couple of hours to meet, greet, and discuss, with light refreshments provided by the DMCA.
So far, we have held two such events, both of which have been highly successful and enjoyed by all who attended. One was at a home on Ocean View, and the other was at a home on 9th Street. Because of COVID-based caution, both events were held in outdoor spaces, with masking highly encouraged. After about a half hour of social mixing and noshing, everyone had the opportunity to introduce themselves, and then, as a group, discuss current Del Mar events and issues. In these first two get-togethers, we were fortunate to have our current Mayor, Dwight Worden, attend and answer questions.
As we head into the Fall, our next gathering will be at a home on Crest Rd. We anticipate many more of these events, and would love to hear from you if you are interested in hosting neighbors at your home, or being invited to one of the events. You may contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org