published by Del Mar Community Alliance. Inc.
Inside the Masrch 2020 Print Issue

Click on cover for the MARCH 2020 print issue in pdf format.

Ghosts at Fairgrounds
Ira Sharp

GUEST EDITORIAL: Complete Streets Now
Kristine Schindler

Breaking Bad
Julie Maxey-Allison

Sea Level Rise Protection
Dwight Worden

Neighborhood Businesses

Harold Feder

Zone Up
Ann Gardner

Heights’ Elementary School: Savvy Grass Rescue
John Gartman

Winston Ways
Ann Gardner

City’s Financial Update
Tom McGreal

Marisol: NO on G
Frank Chisari

Marisol: YES on G
Robb Dalton

Marisol: Commentary:
Hope and Fear

Jeff Barnouw

Scott Thanks
letter from Scott Huth


Short Term Rental



Sea Level Rise


Housing and Jobs Data

FACTOIDS: Top 25 Sales Tax Producers
City of Del Mar Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR), June 30, 2019

Improvement Milestones

City of Del Mar Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR), June 30, 2019

Farmers Market:
Viva le Boeuf!

Leslie Robson

~Housing Hunt

~Safer Streets

Clean and Plain
Valérie Dufort-Roy

Sea to Sierra
Ed Mirsky

Poets Corner:

Linda Chisari

Roving Teen Reporter:
March for Our Lives

Dhathry Doppalapudi

DMF: March 2020
Sandra Hoyle

DMCC: March 2020
Ashley Simpkins

Extra copies of the Sandpiper are available at: the Del Mar Community Building on 9th Street; the Library; the Powerhouse; the Farmers’ Market; the Carmel Valley Library;the Solana Beach Library and the Solana Beach Community Center.


DM Calendar

DMCC Calendar

DMF Calendar

DM Village Association

Public Meetings

City Council

Design Review Board

Planning Commission

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MARCH 2020

Update 03/24/2020

Effective immediately: Parks and beaches closed

Effective immediately, all City of Del Mar beaches, beach access points, bluffs, Powerhouse Park, Seagrove Park, and areas adjacent to the San Dieguito River will be closed to the public to facilitate maintaining a six-foot safe social distance between people who are not in the same household.

The City of Del Mar continues to monitor the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic to take appropriate actions to prevent its spread. Over the weekend, high volumes of people traveled to Del Mar to enjoy the nice weather in the beachfront parks and on the sand.

Under Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “stay at home” order issued March 19, all individuals living in the State of California were ordered to stay at home, except for essential outings to get food, care for a relative or friend, get necessary health care, or go to an essential job.

Newsom’s order permits outdoor activity as long as a safe social distance of six-feet is maintained from people who are not part of the same household. Although many citizens are self-regulating and practicing social distancing, the increased number of people gathering on Del Mar beaches and in adjacent parks creates more opportunities for community spread of the virus. These public parks contain benches, railings and structures that are high-touch areas and could potentially be a source of spread of COVID-19. Closing these areas is prudent to reduce the potential spread of the virus and protect the public.

In support of social distancing protocols and practices, the City of Del Mar continues to provide essential services as part of a comprehensive COVID-19 response.

This action to close the beach and beachfront parks is made in close collaboration with other San Diego coastal cities, recognizing the importance of a consistent approach.
The City has set up a dedicated web page for information about how COVID-19 affects Del Mar, along with providing daily updates:

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Readers' page

Update 03/24/202
The latest information on Del Mar's response to the coronavirus pandemic
Click here for the City COVID-19 updates
This info is constantly updated.  Check back often.
Update 03/23/202
Covid-29 Factoid

Don Mosier, MD, PhD, Rimini Road

In San Diego County, twice as many males as females are infected with the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. What is going on? Are males poorer at social distancing? Are they more likely to gather in large groups? Are they just not as smart?

These could be possible explanations, but the fact is that males have poorer immune responses than females and are more susceptible to many other infections. The biological explanation for this observation in humans and other species is that females are far more critical for reproduction success than males. The downside of the more robust immune response in women is that they are more susceptible to autoimmune diseases like lupus.

Better immunity in women does not exclude the other possible explanations; it just adds one more plausible factor. 

Update 03/23/2020

Don Mosier, MD, PhD, Rimini Road

The coronavirus causing the COVID-19 epidemic, SARS CoV-2, was first detected in Wuhan, China on December 12, 2019, although the epidemic was not disclosed to the World Health Organization until December 31st. SARS CoV-2 was named because of its close relationship to SARS CoV-1 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-1) that caused a more limited epidemic in 2003. That coronavirus infected 8,098 individuals and caused 774 deaths for a mortality rate of almost 10%. That epidemic ended because the virus was much less transmissible than the coronavirus causing COVID-19 (see below for more on this). No effective vaccine or antiviral therapy was developed during the epidemic or in the ensuing years.

Another coronavirus epidemic was recognized in 2012. This was caused by the MERS-CoV (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus) and infected 2,494 individuals, many in Saudi Arabia, and caused 858 deaths, a 34% mortality rate. Camels were the intermediate host for the virus, and camel-to-human transmission exceeded the rate of human-to-human transmission except for healthcare workers treating infected patients. No vaccine against MERS CoV has been developed, but several protease inhibitors originally developed to treat the AIDS virus have shown some clinical benefit in a limited number of MERS-CoV-infected individuals. Like many other viruses, the coronaviruses reproduce by making long precursor proteins that are not functional until they are cut into smaller units by proteases (enzymes that act like scissors). Protease inhibitors prevent this cleavage and let the larger, non-functional proteins accumulate. Protease inhibitors have been used in a few individuals with COVID-19 disease with a possible antiviral effect, but these are anecdotal reports, not carefully controlled clinical trials.

Genetic sequence analysis has revealed that the current SARS CoV-2 epidemic represents the third zoonotic transmission of coronaviruses from bats to humans, with each transmission involving an intermediate host (thought to be civets for SARS CoV-1, camels for MERS, and perhaps chickens for SARS CoV-2). What is so dangerous about the COVID-19 coronavirus is the ease with which it is transmitted between humans. The most likely explanation for increased transmission is the observed changes in the coronavirus spike protein that mediates binding to human cells. The SARS CoV-2 spike protein is predicted to bind to the cell receptor for the virus much better than SARS CoV-1 and MERS based on differences in the critical receptor-binding region of the spike. This change would be analogous to having a key that perfectly fits the door lock instead of one that only partially fits and works part of the time after a lot of jiggling.

Entry inhibitors that block receptor binding have been developed for the AIDS virus, but mainline therapy depends on small molecule inhibitors that block proteases and other critical components of virus replication. There are a host of candidate inhibitors to try with the COVID-19 virus, and many laboratories in the US are working as fast as possible to identify the best inhibitor (or combination of inhibitors) and get them into clinical trials. Unfortunately, there will be no shortage of infected patients to enroll in these trials.

Same text in pdf format.
Update 03/21/2020
Del Mar Farmers Market temporarily Closed
While Temporarily Closed,
some Vendors offer products
on a pick-up/delivery basis as follows:
Click here for a list of vendors offering products on a pick-up/delivery basis.
Update 03/19/2020
Del Mar Village Association

The DMVA is continuously updating a list of Del Mar restaurants and businesses doing delivery and pick up.

Click here for the list. 

Update 03/19/2020
Del Mar Farmers Market temporarily Closed
The Del Mar City Council on March 14 approved an emergency declaration to address coronavirus and regretfully, the Del Mar Farmers Market is now closed through May 31, or until further notice
Update 03/18/2020
Do you need Help?
or Can you help?

How DMCC Can Help

Email or call (858) 792-7565 if you need us to help with:

  • Grocery delivery
  • Obtaining cleaning or hygiene products
  • Social interaction

How You Can Help Senior Neighbors

Email or call (858) 792-7565 if you'd like to do any of the following:

  • Volunteer as a gofer! We need healthy volunteers under the age of 65 to help us collect and deliver groceries, hygiene, and cleaning supplies.
  • Donate hygiene products! We are collecting hand sanitizer, hand soap, paper towels, toilet paper, disinfectant products, and tissues for distribution to seniors. If you can spare these items, please call us at (858) 792-7565 to alert us that you are coming, then drop off the items in the marked bin at the Del Mar Community Building, 225 9th St. 
  • Volunteer as a friendly neighbor! Anyone can make check-in phone calls. 
  • Stay home and stay safe! Practice social distancing at any age and slow the spread of the virus. 
DMCC'S covid-19 page for Information, Resources, and Links
Click here.
Update 03/17/2020
Are you 65 or younger?
Del Mar Community Connections (DMCC)
Needs Volunteers.
Would you be willing to pick up and deliver food to seniors who are quarantined in their homes?

If you are 65 or younger and would like to volunteer, please call Ashley Simpkins, program director of the DMCC, at (858) 792-7565.
Update 03/17/2020
Civic Center closed to Public

To reduce the spread of COVID-19, and in an abundance of caution, the Del Mar Civic Center is closing its doors to the public until further notice.
Members of the public can continue to call or email City Hall during normal business hours. Most City business – including paying utility bills or processing business licenses or permit applications – can be completed by phone or online.

Update 03/16/2020

In Del Mar, the time to act is right now!

Donald Mosier, MD, PhD, Rimini Road

We are in the midst of a public health emergency because of the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus infection and its high mortality in older individuals. Frank Chisari, MD and I presented the current facts about the disease and its spread to the special meeting of the Del Mar City Council on Saturday, March 14th. The city has declared a public health emergency in Del Mar and cancelled all city events until at least April 6th, when the council will hold an online meeting to discuss next steps.

I have updated my presentation from March 14th with some new information and yet another guide on how to take personal steps to protect yourself and others from this infection.

The first slide (see below) shows how the mortality rate from COVID-19 infection increases with age. Individuals over 70 years of age should limit public contact as much as possible to protect themselves, and they should adopt all the protective measures outlined in slide 4. They are the most vulnerable to this virus.

The second slide (see below) updates information from the rapidly spreading outbreak in Italy where the medical care system has been overwhelmed by the number of seriously ill individuals with COVID-19 pneumonia. Even though Italy has been on near total lockdown for the past 2 weeks, these steps were taken too late in the spread of the epidemic to reduce the number of infected individuals substantially. In just 2 days, there were over 7,000 new confirmed cases and 543 additional deaths.

The third slide (see below) shows how fast the infection can spread from one infected individual to the general population in the absence of protective measures, and how social isolation and rigorous application of common-sense measures can slow the spread if adopted early enough. Note that the number of infected individuals is shown in a logarithmic scale to capture the more than doubling of the infection every 4 days. In Del Mar, the time to act is right now.

Slide 4 (see below) illustrates how best to protect yourself from acquiring or spreading the infection. It is critically important that you do not go to the emergency room if you develop a cough and fever. Instead, you should call you personal physician for advice and practice self-isolation from both the public and your family. There is currently a shortage of facemasks and the test for COVID-19 infection, so you need to be patient until these shortages are remedied. Stay in frequent contact with your personal physician and alert him/her if your symptoms worsen and you may need hospital care. Health care providers and emergency personnel need to know your status to protect themselves against infection.

This will be a difficult period for all of us. Del Mar Community Connections is working to provide critical services for seniors who need support, but we all need to be ready to help the most vulnerable among us.

The best website for updated information:

Update 03/16/2020
COVID-19 Death Rate by Age
Slide presentation to City Council on April 6 by
Don Mosier and Frank Chisari.
Click here for the full 4-slide pdf.
Update 03/13/2020
City Prepartions for COVID-19
Update 03/13/2020
Del Mar Foundation

The Del Mar Foundation is cancelling all April 2020 events to conform to social distancing recommendations put forth by public health officials. The following events are cancelled:

4/2/2020 First Thursdays: Hutchins Consort

4/5/2020 Bluegrass & Beyond: The Railsplitters

4/12/2020 Easter egg Hunt at Seagrove Park

While we are deeply disappointed to take this step, we firmly believe that postponing these events is in the best interests of our community. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we continue to monitor this anxious, challenging situation.

Stay healthy Del Mar!
Update 03/13/2020
  Del Mar Community Connections

Hello community partners, 

In response to the growing threat of COVID-19 in the community, especially to older adults, Del Mar Community Connections will be shutting down all programs, starting immediately. This shutdown will last through at least the end of April. 

The shutdown applies to weekly, monthly, and one-time programs, including presentations, social gatherings, activities, meal programs, and group transportation. Some programs will be cancelled and others rescheduled; we will notify you through our email communications once we are able to resume regular operations. 

We thank you for your understanding as we all work together to protect the community from this pandemic.


Ashley Simpkins
Program Director
Update 03/12/2020
COVID-19: Shelter in Place
A Lesson in Resilience
Linda Chisari | Crest Road

It’s the direction we’re receiving today:  Stay at home; avoid crowded gatherings; don’t attend meetings in person, unless the attendees can be at least 6’ apart. Theatre events, sporting events, political rallies…all seem trivial when viewed through the lens of putting the lives of thousands of vulnerable people at risk of being infected by the COVID-19 virus.

It seems safe to venture out on a morning walk along Crest Road in the fresh air, both to satisfy the “request” of my golden retriever to get some exercise and check his “pee-mail” and, also, to clear my mind from the breathtaking, alarming news on the face of my electronic devices and the front pages of the newspapers. The street is quiet, almost devoid of traffic; it seems as if no one is going anywhere either by car or on foot. But there are lessons in resilience along the road!

Thousands of freesias are blooming in abundance, filling the foggy air with their almost breathtaking fruity-sweet fragrance. Their bulbs have waited patiently in the ground since last March, going about whatever it is that dormant bulbs do during hibernation…hoarding food, staying away from the threat of extreme dryness.

And then there are snails! I counted 89 along the short path through Crest Rim Park. Slithering slowly along in ecstasy, laying a slimy trail that protects their tender bellies from the gritty ground, their criss-crossing trails make a beautiful lacy pattern that could have been created by an artist’s hand. Where have they been since last year this time? They’ve lived in the thin cracks between the boulders, under the rocks, sealed tightly behind their self-made epiphragms, waiting to venture out at the first sign of moisture to try out newly-restored plumpness and assuage their hunger and thirst.

So, as we shelter in place, with all the conveniences of our homes, surely we can be as resilient as these freesias and snails and, at the same time, protect our human family from a virulent infection.

Update 03/12/2020

The Del Mar Gun Show for March 14-15 has been cancelled.  The March 21-22 Orange County Show has been cancelled as well.

Update 03/10/2020
Donald Terwilliger
December 9,1930—March 4, 2020

Don was born here in Del Mar, attended school in the old City Hall building, and retired here after working more than 30 years in the entertainment business as a dancer in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Francisco and a US tour of the musical “The Music Man."

An avid horse lover Don was at our track on opening day in 1937 and held the record of never missing a meet.  He was an active member of the DMF’s Cultural Arts Committee for years and worked with the Del Mar Historical Society for the preservation of the Alvarado House

Update 03/04/2020
Protect Your Loved Ones
From Gun Violence

Restraining Orders
Safe Gun Storage Ordinance*
Wednesday, March 11, 2020
6:30 -7:30 p.m.
Del Mar Hills Academy
14085 Mango Drive, Del Mar

Join friends & neighbors to learn about how these new tools prevent:

•Unintentional Child Shootings
•Domestic Violence
•School and Mass Shootings

*A limited number of free gun locks will be available.

See League of Women Voters flyer

March print Issue
Ghosts at Fairgrounds
Ira Sharp

Ghost guns are un-serialized, untraceable firearms assembled from unregulated firearm parts and components requiring some assembly by the purchaser. Like real ghosts, they cannot be traced by law enforcement without a serial number; they are instantly available because there is no 10-day waiting period. There is no background check, no age limit, no trace of taxes and no certificate of firearm training when a ghost gun is purchased. All the gun laws that have made California one of the safest states in USA are ghosted away.

Despite the fact that the Del Mar Fair board suspended gun shows and Todd Gloria led a successful effort to pass legislation to end the sale of firearms and ammunition on the state-owned Del Mar Fairgrounds effective in 2021, Crossroads of the West obtained a preliminary injunction to permit Crossroads to hold gun shows during the pendency of the lawsuit under the same terms as before. Those contractual terms did not prevent the Fair Board from determining who was a fit vendor.

In July, 2018 when the first acknowledged ghost guns showed up for sale at the Crossroads gun show in Del Mar, the Fair Board President directed Crossroads immediately to expel the vendor, Firearms Unknown, from the show. NeverAgainCA is protesting the current Fair Board’s inaction on ghost gun vendors because public safety is at risk. More than 80% of the Crossroads vendors now sell ghost guns, not guns on the state registry. Ghost gun sales are robust and an observer at a recent Southern California gun show counted a single vendor selling as many as 21 guns in one hour.

Besides the obvious reasons that a felon, a teenager, or a mentally ill person desiring to purchase a gun would want to evade the laws and purchase a ghost gun, there are immediacy and financial reasons for buying ghost guns, which look like a 9mm Glock or an AR15. A ghost gun fires like a gun and kills like a gun and costs about $200 less than a factory manufactured 9mm Glock. In less than 3 minutes you can buy a complete ghost gun kit at a Crossroads gun show and in less than 15 minutes, you can put the parts together. In the past it took skill and perseverance to find and purchase all the parts to make a rifle or handgun. Now you open up a box the size of a VHS videotape, snap off five plastic parts, file down any rough edges with the abrasive stone provided; drill three holes into the frame with the provided drill bits and you have a $400 gun that is as capable of inflicting death as a 9 mm Glock manufactured in a factory and which costs over $600.


March print Issue
Roving Teen Reporter:
March for Our Lives

Dhathry Doppalapudi

February 14th is a day that, for most people, signifies love and happiness. For others, though, it brings back traumatic memories of a horrible, heartbreaking event in which many young lives were lost to gun violence: the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. This tragedy ignited the student-led March for Our Lives movement against gun violence and for increased gun legislation, most notably universal background checks, bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and red flag laws. The movement started with a nationwide protest on March 24, 2018, which became the largest youth-led protest to occur since the Vietnam War. Now, two years later, the movement’s momentum has slowed but not disappeared.

Jasmine, a sophomore at Torrey Pines High School, was a student organizer for the San Diego march in 2018. “I remember being horrified when I first heard the news [about the Parkland shooting], then I heard a few days later about how the Parkland kids were organizing and I thought it was really inspiring,” Jasmine said. “I think Parkland was different because there was a general feeling that people were done and demanded change.”

Another reason that students paid more attention to the March for Our Lives movement was that it was led by fellow students. “The fact that it’s student-led is very important because school shootings obviously affect us the most directly and impact our daily lives, even here at Torrey Pines,” said Bea, a senior. “Knowing that this could happen at any moment is kind of this cloud that hangs over all the students.”

Since the tragedy in Parkland, many states have improved their gun laws, some by banning bump stocks and expanding background check legislation. Although she appreciates the changes that have been made, Jasmine says, she insists that this is not enough. “I would like to see changes being made at a federal level. I want universal background checks, a ban on assault weapons, better mental health resources for students, and red flag laws.”

March for Our Lives has now turned away from protests and towards a plan that they call “A Peace Plan for a Safer America.” Among other things in this plan, the group intends to implement a gun buy-back program to reduce the number of guns in circulation, declare a state of national emergency for gun violence, and initiate government investigations into the National Rifle Association.

“The youngest ones in any generation have been the biggest advocates for change because they are going to be the ones to live with these laws for decades to come,” Jasmine said. This issue hits hard for the teenagers in our generation because in our increasingly complex and interconnected world, even if we have not experienced this violence firsthand, we have seen and heard from others like us who have. We understand the impacts of these tragedies that occur far too often and we do not want to be next.

March print Issue

This John Dempsey cartoon appeared in April 1997 in the very first issue of the Sandpiper.

Click to enlarge.
March print Issue
Marisol: NO on G
Frank Chisari

I believe there are valid, community-oriented, arguments on both sides of this issue; however, I come down against Measure G because I revere our beloved Community Plan and I want to preserve it intact for future generations, especially the very first of its enduring Goals. Unfortunately, I have concluded that, on balance, the Marisol project is irreparably antithetical to the first Goal’s objectives.
Goal 1 reads as follows:


The heart and soul of Goal 1 of our Community Plan is preservation of open space by adhering to the following objectives and policies:

• “Preserve, as City-owned open space, areas desirable as City parks and preserves.”
• “Preserve and where necessary acquire easements for the protection of access to the beach and other public open space.”
• “Ensure that future development results in a minimum disturbance of existing or natural terrain and vegetation and does not create soil erosion, silting of lower slopes, slide damage, flooding problems and/or severe cutting or scarring.”

Despite all the potential benefits of the Marisol evelopment for Del Mar’s coffers and low-income housing obligations, there is no way that I can square the objectives of our Community Plan with the extent to which this gargantuan resort will:

(a) destroy the natural environment of the bluff;
(b) disembowel millions of cubic yards of bluff sandstone;
(c) cover many acres of currently open ground with impervious material that will prevent absorption of surface water and (d) ultimately pollute our lagoon and kill its precious life-forms;
(e) block sunlight from nurturing native plant growth;
(f) prevent ocean breezes from cooling a warming village; and
(g) attract hundreds or thousands of fossil fuel-dripping vehicles a day that will pollute the air and soil and, ultimately, the lagoon.

That’s why I’m voting NO on measure G.

I may be a dreamer but I think, if we all put our heads and our hearts and our wallets together, our community can come up with a better idea that preserves the spirit and the integrity of our Community Plan and serves the best interests of the citizens of Del Mar.

March print Issue
Marisol: YES on G
Robb Dalton

Emotions are running high on Measure G and the proposed Marisol Resort. Fueling some of those emotions are some exaggerations and sadly, some lies. Here are the incontestable, indisputable facts:

FACT #1 DOG BEACH IS NOT BEING ELIMINATED, IT WOULD BE IMPROVED with new permanent rest rooms, sand replacement and stairs to the new hiking trail.

FACT #2 THE BLUFF WILL NOT BECOME A PARK. It is private land that will be developed (Del Mar could never afford the millions of dollars to build & maintain a park). So McMansions or a Boutique Resort?

FACT #3 THE RESORT WILL ENHANCE BLUFF ACCESS with access to the lion’s share of the bluff that has long been off limits. The chain link fence barring bluff access will finally come down.

FACT #4 SOLANA BEACH WILL BENEFIT FROM THE RESORT with new customers for Solana Beach businesses and restaurants. Solana Beach condos & homes will go up in value the day the Resort opens.

FACT #5 DEVELOPERS ARE NEEDED TO MAKE LIFE POSSIBLE. Shopping, housing, dining, medical, retirement, and educational facilities are made possible by Developers willing to invest.

FACT #6 THE PROCESS IS NOT BEING RUSHED. For over a year the developers have been meeting with the community, sharing plans, renderings and studies. Now they are asking for a vote of the people.

FACT #7 THE RESORT WOULD NOT BE MASSIVE, but small compared to area Resorts like La Costa, Aviara & Grand Del Mar Resorts that average over 400 rooms compared to Marisol’s approximately 125 rooms.

FACT #8 THE MARISOL RESORT WILL BE ONE OF THE MOST VETTED RESORTS EVER BUILT with every necessary local, state and federal agency that is appropriate weighing in. The bluff will be protected.

So folks, let’s try to stick to the facts, stop the name calling and accusations and have a rational conversation about Del Mar’s real options—Resort or McMansions? Thanks for listening….

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