• Polly E. Toledo

“Smile, you’re in San Diego” a motto Councilmember Campbell can live by...

Updated: Dec 30, 2019

Photo credit: PANDR Design Co. Mural by PANDR Design Co.

In case you are wondering, District 2 includes the communities of Clairemont, Linda Vista, Midway/North Bay, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Ocean Beach, Pacific Beach, and Point Loma. That encompasses a number of unique communities and even more Arts and Culture opportunities. I recently wrote to Councilmember Jennifer Campbell, who represents District 2, to ask her a little bit about herself and what she thinks makes San Diego and her district a great Arts and Culture destination.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I grew up in Colorado, spent time in Washington D.C. and Pittsburgh before moving to San Diego 14 years ago. Before coming to City Hall I practiced and taught medicine and acupuncture for 37 years. Serving people has long been a passion of mine and I’m honored to continue to do so as the District 2 representative.

What do you enjoy most about arts and culture in San Diego?

San Diego is a great arts community. We have a huge variety of art – museums, ballet, opera, theater, modern dance, the list goes on. While being a doctor doesn’t give you a lot of down time, my partner Suzanne and I have spent a lot of it enjoying art. In the past we were season ticket holders to the La Jolla Playhouse, the San Diego Civic Theater and the Diversionary Theatre. All three provided a different kind of experience – from plays I knew by heart to experimental projects that challenged one’s perceptions. That sort of variety makes San Diego truly unique.

What makes your district’s arts and culture community unique?

District 2 is packed with opportunities to explore arts and culture. In every neighborhood there’s a chance to listen, view or experience something new. From Liberty Station’s Arts District, the WOW Festival, Humphrey's by the Bay – not to mention an ever-growing public art scene - my district has really become ground zero for arts and culture in San Diego. Even our fantastic community groups get in on the act. The Ocean Beach and Pacific Beach Town Councils constantly bring neighbors together with their events like Concerts on the Green or the Chili Cook Off, while Point Loma residents hold an annual summer concert series as well. I’m proud to support these groups through our CPPS funding to ensure that everyone in District 2 can be a part of our arts and culture community.

What do you find most interesting and exciting about the San Diego Arts and Culture ecosystem?

There’s a lot to love when it comes to San Diego’s arts and culture ecosystem. As someone who enjoys live performances, our regional theaters seem to get better every year, whether it’s performing the classics or launching a new play that will soon end up on Broadway. I’m also thrilled that our bi-national cultural connections continue to grow. We’re seeing more and more cross-border and cross-cultural art projects coming together that explore not just San Diego but our entire region. One final piece to this puzzle is our growing public art movement. From murals to electrical boxes, the expansion of everyday art that makes people happy has a subtle but important impact. My personal favorite is a mural a few blocks from City Hall. Big bright colors and a simple message – “Smile, you’re in San Diego.” A perfect summary of how I feel every day.

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