Discovering Art in Nature at Torrey Pines State Beach

 

Torrey Pines State Beach (below Torrey Pines State Reserve), is one of my favorite “go to”places in San Diego.

Why? Because it is always different, each time I visit. I always seem to “see” art in nature…

The sandstone bluff rock formations and cliffs are majestic and magnificent. The amazing ocean with constantly changing tides speaks for itself. Nature abounds with animals and birds. I just marvel at the beauty. I also try bring my camera and snap away at what I see before me. Plus the extra added value of exercise as I stroll along the beach.

Last week, I spotted a few treasures which I captured photographically. I saw the blue Velella Vellela jellyfish (also called ‘by the wind sailors’ due to their resembling a sailboat), the pelicans continuously flew by back and forth in formation (although there are always a few stragglers ‘doing their own thing’), an egret graced the sand at the shoreline and then flew away (which I was fortunate to take a few photos of). Also of note, a peregrine falcon which was perched high above (several photographers had their long lenses prepped and were telling me how the falcon “Dad’ was so greedy and wouldn’t share food with his partner for her and the babies). I certainly hope this changes and those ‘babies’ thrive soon and the female gets more nourishment!

An amazing find of the day, I almost stepped upon. It was my first encounter with a juvenile eared grebe. It was sitting alone on the beach near the shoreline. Its striking orange eye captivated me. It was just sitting there…It looked healthy yet something didn’t seem “right” since it was ‘picking’ at it’s feathers every few seconds. Before I left, I called the ranger station and reported it. They arrived and said they would not be able to do anything themselves, but would call the “bird people”, I hope they did…

Do you see art in nature? Do you enjoy breathing in the ocean air? Do you reflect on how fortunate we are to be able to see so many wonderful species and celebrate gifts of the earth? I highly encourage you to if you can.

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It’s a RUFF life: Ugly Dog Contest…(Not Just for Ugly Dogs) 4/19/15 at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club!

We (my daughter Emmy, her friend Sydney and I), enjoyed a great afternoon on April 19th, 2015 at the 20th Annual “Ugly Dog Contest” at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club! We arrived about 30 minutes after it started, but still caught most of the contest!

The San Diego Coastal Chamber of Commerce and Del Mar Kiwanis were hosts. Sheila McDonnell, who passed away three years ago but was founder of the contest, was recognized and honored. Sheila’s wish was “for the event to continue to take place and to continue raising money for organizations that benefit animals and children”.

There were many 4-legged contestants, their owners/handlers, an MC (Greg Vicino- Associate Curator, San Diego Zoo Global), vendor booths, raffle prizes and snacks, and of course spectators.

According to the program, Judges were Brandi Williams (KUSI), Christy Manry (Elam’s Hallmark), Anna Orlando (Kilroy Properties), Sara Ingrande (Torrey Pines Bank) and Kelly Baldieri (Del Mar Hilton).  Vendors were: Camp Run-a-Mutt, Welk Resorts, RDSI Designs, Easy Turf, Real Blue Proerties, The 4 Foundation, CruiseOne Dream Vacations, Keane Studios, Kahoots Pet Store, Total Thermal Imaging of San Diego, Built Green California, The San Diego Humane Society and Reality Changers (which received a portion of the proceeds).Product donations were provided by Vons, Albertsons, Ralphs, Whole Foods, Mary’s Tack & Feed, RDSI, Dirty Dogs, Dexter’s Deli, Keane Studios and the Del Mar Hilton.

The categories were “Cutest puppy/dog”, “Most unusual markings”, “Dog that looks like owner”, “Best trick”, “Best costume Adult & Dog and Child & Dog”, “Cutest Mutt”, “Most beautiful male and female” and finally “THE UGLIEST DOG”! The winner of the UGLY DOG contest: RASCAL!

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Rascal, the winner of the Ugly Dog Contest with his owner Dane Andrew and the MC Greg Vicino (Associate Curator San Diego Zoo GLobal)

Here below are the top three finalists of the Ugly Dog Contest: Snack , Puddin’ and Rascal!

Winners of the Ugly Dog Contest
Winners of the Ugly Dog Contest

Here’s a video of Rascal and his Owner, (Dane Andrew) by Animal Planet!

http://www.animalplanet.com/video/meet-rascal/

And here is Rascals’ WEBSITE LINK: http://www.theworldsugliestdog.com/index.html

 Here’s a peek at  the contestants and a few other images of the day!  Click on each photo for a larger view.

We don’t have all the names, so leave a comment if you can provide names of the pooches)

Photos by SJF Communications. http://www.sjfcommunications.com