La Jolla News Nuggets

Electric scooter ridership has dropped by half since the summer, according to new City figures. Pictured are scooters parked on La Jolla Boulevard.

Downhill plummet for e-scooter ridership

Ridership of dockless electric scooters is down by a whopping half since the summer, according to data recently released by the City. From July to October, the number of trips using shared-mobility devices dropped from 441,830 over two weeks to 222,076.

It may be fall’s normal tourist exodus. It may be the new rules the City put in place this summer. (San Francisco-based Skip and Uber’s Jump have already pulled their devices from San Diego, complaining about the rules.) It may be both or neither.

No one can state for certain the downturn’s cause because the City only started collecting data from the industry this summer — more than a year after the scooters started showing up on San Diego’s streets.

The City continues to encourage residents to report parking and other scooter violations via the City’s Get It Done app:

‘Donor’ kidney stones passed in La Jolla

A desperate plea for help from the East Coast has made its way to La Jolla. Residents report spotting colorfully painted rocks around town all bearing the message “my boyfriend needs a kidney.”

They were painted by Krystal Sparks of Grayson County, Virginia, whose boyfriend, 21-year-old Robert Fallon, is down to less than 1 percent kidney function and not expected to survive very long without a transplant.

Although the rocks have been scattered all over the world by concerned citizens trying to find a match, so far, none has turned up after two years. Anyone who can help is encouraged to e-mail

Carlton closing; claims wasn’t taken to tusk

Carlton Gallery owner Victor Cohen confirmed what new banners outside his store announce: the luxury art and jewelry store at 1144 Prospect St. is going out of business.

“We are, unfortunately,” Cohen said, adding that he was “not sure when” — although an unidentified salesperson commented it would probably be around Jan. 1, 2020.

Cohen and salesperson Sheldon Kupersmith pleaded guilty in February to illegal ivory trafficking and were fined $210,000 after more than 300 pieces of illegal elephant and hippopotamus ivory were found inside their store and warehouse. Valued at $1.3 million, the seizure was the largest of its kind since California banned the sale of ivory in 2016.

When asked if the closure was related to the ivory case, Cohen replied with an emphatic “no.”

“The town has changed,” he said. When asked to elaborate, he replied: “just that the people have changed.”

Susan G. Komen races for cancer cure Nov. 3

The 23rd annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will take place Sunday, Nov. 3 in Balboa Park.

With the money raised from the event, Susan G. Komen San Diego will provide free services for every step of the breast cancer journey — including research, mammograms, biopsies, ultrasounds, care coordination, advocacy and financial assistance.

“Watching thousands of San Diegans pour into Balboa Park united by the same vision — a world without breast cancer — takes my breath away,” said Shaina Gross, president and CEO of Komen San Diego. “We are stronger together as a community and that morning we are all filled with an unwavering hope for the future.”

Susan Goodman — later Susan Goodman Komen — died of breast cancer at age 36 in 1980. Her younger sister, Nancy Goodman Brinker — believing that her outcome might have been better if patients knew more about cancer and its treatment — founded the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation in Komen’s memory in 1982.

The vendor expo opens at 6:30 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 3 along Balboa Drive, and the walk will begin at 8 a.m. at 6th Avenue and Palm Street.

Torrey Pines Church fetes 60 years

On Sunday, Nov. 3, Torrey Pines Church (TPC) at 8320 La Jolla Scenic Drive North will celebrate 60 years with a party on its lawn.

A variety of worship music — from traditional/choir to contemporary — will be on tap, as well as speakers including both current pastors, Mingo Palacios (formerly with Saddleback and the Rock churches) and Dr. Tim Scott (formerly with Grace Church). Retired TPC pastor Claire Berry will also give a message.

Two identical services will be offered in the main sanctuary at 9:15 and 11 a.m. For more details, call (858) 453-3550.

La Jolla taco shop

nationally recognized

Ever wonder why the line for the Taco Stand, 621 Pearl St., is usually 20 young tourists deep? The answer is their online user reviews.

Now, Tripadvisor recognizes the accomplishment by rating the Taco Stand No. 4 on Tripadvisor’s Top 10 list of highly rated fast-casual restaurants — not just in San Diego but the entire U.S.A! The awards were described as taking into consideration the quantity and quality of user reviews gathered over a 12-month period.

The tiny Tijuana-style street food eatery, which opened in 2013, ranked just behind In-N-Out Burger in Los Angeles and Shake Shack in Miami. Ranking No. 1 was The Earl of Sandwich in New Orleans.

Dr. Seuss brand spruced with BBC hire

Dr. Seuss Enterprises — the licensing company promoting the late Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel’s work — has appointed Julie Dill as VP of global licensing, marketing and communications. She previously served as VP of marketing, creative and partnerships at BBC Studios.

“I’m excited to work with Julie to raise the Dr. Seuss brand profile and grow our business, while reinforcing Dr. Seuss’s core values, mission and vision,” said Susan Brandt, president of Dr. Seuss Enterprises. Dill will oversee the consumer products division and lead Dr. Seuss’s international partners, as well move Dr. Seuss into new product categories.

Red Cross needs healthy blood donors

As influenza activity picks up, the American Red Cross urges healthy donors of all blood types — especially platelet donors and those with type O blood — to step up and ensure a strong blood supply for patients in need.

Although blood and platelets can only be given by donors who are feeling well, the Red Cross stresses, having had the flu shot does not affect eligibility. (For those who have the flu, it is important to wait until flu symptoms pass.)

La Jolla blood donations will be accepted 1-7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1 at the Residence Inn, 8901 Gilman Drive; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 7, 8, 12 and 15 at the UC San Diego Library Walk, 9500 Gilman Drive.

Young choreographers sought for competition

San Diego Dance Theater is calling for talent to compete in its 10th annual Young Choreographers Showcase and Prize. Dance choreographers ages 18-30 are sought in all dance styles. Prizes come with awards from $500 to $1,000.

The application deadline is Dec. 8, with a performance March 14, 2020. Entrants must not present a piece previously performed in San Diego County. Find details at

Have a La Jolla “news nugget” or story idea? Call La Jolla Light at (858) 875-5951 or e-mail the details (and include a related photo if possbile) to

— Compiled by Corey Levitan from local reports.