Bernasconi Bits

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Panama 66 – For Families and Craft Beer Connoisseurs

Panama 66, in beautiful Balboa Park, is an amazing blend of culture, local food, cocktails a family friendly atmosphere and craft beer.

Panama 66 invites families and craft beer connoisseurs to order a tasty brew to enjoy along with a delectable meal all while browsing the art on display in the San Diego Museum of Art’s Sculpture Garden. While you can sit at the provided tables, I suggest you bring a picnic blanket and relax on the grass under the trees. Don’t worry, they will find you and bring you your order.

Also, if there is an Automatic Brewing Co (the house brewery) beer on tap, snag one of those and you won’t regret it.

In case you are interested, Panama 66 is the sister restaurant to Tiger!Tiger! and Blind Lady Ale House (my favorite craft beer spot in Normal Heights).

Panama 66

Where: 1450 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101
Hours: Check website for soft opening hours
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USAvBEL World Cup March to the Match in San Diego

Even with the amazing goal and first touch by Julian Green, Belgium defeated the US 2-1 in overtime. I sulked out of Petco Park and headed back to my office dispirited and very badly sunburnt.

However, the loss cannot take away the amazing experience of walking in the American Outlaws San Diego’s energetic March to the Match and watching the game with thousands of enthusiastic fans all donning red, white and blue.

I am looking forward to Russia in 2018!

Scenes from the March to the Match

#AOSD - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

#AOSD is the San Diego Chapter of the American Outlaws and they brought plenty energy and enthusiasm to the USAvBEL March to the Match during the World Cup

Fans of All Ages - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

Fans of all ages showed up to support the USNMT and show the world how San Diego is a soccer (football) city!

Waving the Red, White and Blue - - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

The crowd marched its way through the Gaslamp Quarter toward Petco Park proudly showing off their support of the USNMT and the Red, White and Blue

Waiting Outside Petco Park - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

The crowd cheered, jumped and kept everyone excited as we all waited outside Petco Park for the gates to open

Sea of Red, White and Blue - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

Petco Park’s Park at the Park filled with a sea of Red White and Blue fans excited to cheer on the USNMT

Cheer Leader - American Outlaws San Diego March to the Match

He kept the crowd pumped up and chanting through the high and low times of the game and until the bitter, bitter end

Photos Copyright Brent Bernasconi 2014

Living Coast Discovery Center – San Diego’s Hidden Nature Center

Tucked away in San Diego’s South Bay, the Living Coast Discovery Center (formerly the Chula Vista Nature Center) provides an up close view of the flora and fauna found in the San Diego Bay along with nature trails to the bay itself.

Since I had never been before, I decided the time had come to explore the Discovery Center. My wife and I packed up the diaper bag, put the little one into his car seat and drove south to to learn all about San Diego Bay.

Getting to the Discovery Center

Cars are not allowed to drive up to the Living Coast Discovery Center because it sits in the middle of a nature preserve. In the parking lot right off the freeway, we unloaded the car and walked on over to the free shuttle stop. The shuttle makes regular loops from the Center to the parking lot and to the Bayfront/E Street Trolley Station. If you take the trolley, you need to request the shuttle at the Visitor Center.

From Bay to Land

The Center - Living Coast Discovery Center

The Center starts with creatures from the bay, moves into the marshes and ends on land

Before we even made it into the Center, a few endangered Eastern Pacific Green Sea Turtles greeted us at the outdoor Turtle Lagoon. Luckily, we visited during the early afternoon and caught the daily 1:30 PM feeding.

Once inside, we had to say hello to Nemos and Dorys swimming in the tank right next to the entrance. (Is this a requirement of aquariums these days?)

Just past Nemo are tanks full of fish found in the bay including the hypnotic black jellies. As we moved down the hallway, we saw creatures native to the marsh areas and land crawlers including slithery snakes and a turtle that can snap a piece of wood in half with his beak.

Make sure to look up at the seagulls soaring below the rafters before you head outside.

Rays, Sharks, Eagles and More

Touching Pool - Living Coast Discovery Center

Step up to the touching pool to feel the velvety skin of one of the rays

After exiting through the rear door of the Center, we made a left toward the Shark and Ray Experience. If you are up for it, step up to the touch pool and feel the soft velvety skin of a ray (make sure to wash your hands afterward).

We passed on the touching the rays since we had an infant and walked down the ramp to a peek into the 21,000 gallon pool that houses four types of local sharks: leopard sharks, grey smoothhound sharks, horn sharks, and swell sharks. We lucked out again and caught the 2:00 PM weekend feeding. Weekday feedings are offered at 11:00 AM.

Opposite the Shark and Ray Experience are the aviaries full of local birds including shorebirds, eagles, hawks, owls, osprey, and even the Turkey Vulture. Feedings are daily at 2:30 PM. We quickly made our way through the aviary area since we really wanted to hike the bay trail and didn’t know how much time the little one would give us.

Trails to the Bay

Trail to the Bay - Living Coast Discovery Center

Explore the area’s gunpowder history while hiking to beautiful views of the San Diego Bay

We ended our visit to the Living Coast Discovery Center with an easy hike down to San Diego Bay. The trailhead starts across the street and slightly to the south of the main entrance. Along the trail we read the information panels that chronicled the area’s gunpowder history and transformation into an ecological reserve.

About halfway through the trek, the trail splits into three sections all leading to different parts of the bay. We took the trailhead on the far right. We sat on the bench at the end of the trail and enjoyed the amazing view of Downtown San Diego and the Coronado Bay Bridge.

Thirty some odd minutes later, we started to get chilly (it was January and next to the water) and decided to head back to the car. The shuttle picked us up in front of the Center and swiftly returned us to the parking lot so we could head home.

I really look forward to taking the little one back to the Living Coast Discovery Center when he is bigger so he can run from exhibit to exhibit learning something new about San Diego Bay’s wildlife.

Living Coast Discover Center Info

Where: 1000 Gunpowder Point Dr, Chula Vista, CA 91910
Hours: Daily: 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Cost: $9-$14 (2014 prices)
> Find out more about the Living Coast Discovery Center

More Photos of the Living Coast Discovery Center

Eau de Mama par Desperate Fathers

As the father of a newborn whose only current desire is to spend as much time as possible with his Mama (and will scream like a banshee when denied), I am asking the scientific and fragrance communities to create the following:

Eau de Mama

Eau de Mama - A New Fragrance

Eau de Mama combines the sweet smell of a mother’s comforting embrace with the slightest hint of fresh breast milk to create the perfect formula for any father or care giver longing to hold and be loved by their child.

Eau de Mama, for those who are not Mama.

Eau de Mama is sold at Neiman Marcus and other fine retailers.

Please Note: Eau de Mama does not guarantee your child will love you at any point during his or her development. This fragrance is only meant to be used during times of pure desperation which can be every time you hold your child.