Feel the Ocean Air
The overall umbrella mission of San Diego Park & Recreation Centers clearly represents what is happening at Ocean Air Community Park and Recreation Center. Children, youth and adults are reaping the benefits of participating in the plethora of activities provided by the Park and Center that has been a staple in the community since January 2010.Quality programs, safe environments, special events that provide community camaraderie and a team of dedicated Council Members are the driving force of what makes the center thrive. Site Supervisor, Kevin Wiggins, educates us on the ins and outs of this neighborhood gem provided to the 92130 Community.
With the Ocean Air Recreation Center Site Supervisor Kevin Wiggins
How was the name Ocean Air Recreation Center determined?
The park was named after the street E. Ocean Air Drive and the neighboring elementary school.
What does the center pride itself on?
I like to think we take pride in providing great customer service and providing the public with accurate information about our programs, permitting opportunities, park rules and regulations. Our staff also takes pride in providing the community with a clean and safe recreation environment.
What is the center’s philosophy, in terms of meeting the needs of the community and its young people?
The Recreation Council and city staff worked diligently before the facility opened in gathering community input on which programs and activities they wanted to see and participate in. Program instructors were interviewed by the Recreation Council and City staff allowing us to provide quality recreation classes and team sport opportunities from the first day we opened the doors. City staff also worked with the Carmel Valley Sports Council in allocating the new lighted ball fields to the community.
What are the amenities and facilities available at the recreation center?
Ocean Air is an 18 acre park that includes a 16,500 square foot recreation center providing two meeting rooms, a kitchen, offices, restrooms and an 11,000 square foot multi-functional gymnasium. The park includes two ball fields, an outdoor basketball court, walking paths, two picnic shade structures and a large grassy passive area surrounded by rolling mounds. The park also provides a large playground with climbing rocks and boulders, a sand area and various play structures for children ages 2 through 12.
Artistically, the park includes a long row of Liquidambar trees, which when mature will shield park users from prevailing winds that sweep through the site. The site includes California native plants that line the pathways and bring the users up to a stainless steel deck that overlooks the open space preserve. The project was designed to meet the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification for its environmentally sustainable design. The park also connects to the Carmel Mountain Preserve, 400 acres of trails and is home to the largest collection of plant and animals in San Diego County.
Tell us about the Recreation Council. Who are the members and what are their roles?
This group of concerned citizens volunteer their time to advise park and recreation staff on matters related to park and recreation programs, community events and equipment. They plan, promote, publicize and help provide recreation opportunities for citizens within the boundaries of the Ocean Air Recreation Council. Groups, clubs and leagues using the parks are encouraged to send a representative to the meeting. Meetings are open to the public. We encourage and welcome your participation. If you are interested or have concerns about your neighborhood parks (which include Ocean Air Community Park, Sage Canyon and Torrey Hills Neighborhood Parks) please attend the meetings or join the council.
What is your background and how long have you been involved with the Recreation Council?
Our current Ocean Air Recreation Council members are: Chairperson, Kurtis Swanberg; Youth Baseball and Softball Instructor (New Member); Vice Chairperson, Kelly Goodwin, Environmental Molecular Microbiologist and Martial Artist (Involved since 2008); Treasurer, Roy Ashcroft, Assistant Director Del Mar Carmel Valley Sharks Youth Soccer (2 years); Corresponding Secretary, Jason Hardy, Pastor Wave Church (New Member).
When and where does the Council meet and what takes place at meetings?
The Ocean Air Recreation Council meets the 4th Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at Ocean Air Recreation Center.
What is the relationship with other recreation centers in San Diego County?
Ocean Air Recreation Center is part of the City of San Diego Park and Recreation Department which consists of 57 recreation centers, 5 skate parks, and hundreds of neighborhood parks. All of these facilities are free and open to the public with fees for program participation.
What is the staffing size at the center? Who are the key personnel in allowing for successful programs?
Currently the facility is supervised by a full time Center Director III, (3) full time Ground Maintenance Worker II’s and (3) part time Recreation Leaders I’s. The City of San Diego’s Civic Dance Arts program as well as (8) Independent Contractors provide recreation classes and programs. Instructors also rent fields from the city to provide additional programs and activities at this location.
What are the most popular programs/leagues at the recreation center for both youth and adult?
Our youth Martial Arts, Performing Arts Dance, Gymnastics and Jr. Sports programs are the most popular. Adult activities include Martial Arts, Pilates, Co-ed Softball, Basketball and Flag Football. We also offer open free play time in the gym for basketball, badminton, volleyball and pickle ball for seniors. Little league, girls softball and youth soccer leagues permit the sports fields throughout the year.
What are the age groups served by the recreation center?
The center serves residents of all ages.
Are there any upcoming events you would like the community to be aware of?
Our next special event is Summer Fest on Sunday, June 10. At this event we celebrate the start of summer and promote our summer activities. Music, food and usual good times are included. We also have two Movie in the Park nights. The first is at Ocean Air Community Park on Friday, July 27 showing Adventures of Tin Tin. The second is at Sage Canyon Neighborhood Park on Friday, August 10 showing Spy Kids 4. These events are free to the public. For more information, please call the Ocean Air Recreation Center at 858-552-1687.
What are the summer programs available? When does registration begin?
Our Summer Camp program is available now at the office or you can download it off our website: www.sandiego.gov/park-and-recreation/centers/oceanair.shtml.
Our Summer Class Activity program will be available May 29. Registration for all summer camps and activities will begin June 4 at 5:00 p.m.
What are the future plans for expansion of facilities and/or services at the center?
There are no current plans for expansion of the facility. We are continually evaluating the recreational needs of the community.