Professional development and training blog of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)
September 4, 2009

PRSA 2009 International Conference: 50 Sculptures, 3 Museums, 1 Aircraft Carrier, 7 Ships and 2 Submarines in a One-mile Radius

San Diego dwtn map artIn our continuing exploration of the fun side (as opposed to the learning/networking side) of the Conference, I wanted to take a moment to show just how much entertainment/culture exists within walking distance of the Conference hotel (The San Diego Marriot Hotel & Marina). Last week’s San Diego photo tour mentioned our downtown is packed with public art.

Today, map- and photo- based proof.

First, I drew a hotel-centered 1-mile radius circle on our Downtown Public Art Guide Map (downloadable PDF). Within that circle, I count 50 pieces of public art ranging from whimsical to memorial, as well as numerous galleries and several performing arts theaters. Additionally, there are TWO major motion picture theaters (1 & 2). All are highly walkable.

The circle also includes our Children’s Museum (WOW), Maritime Museum (WAY COOL) and Museum of Contemporary Art (VERY CHIC). More on those after the slide show.

Next, pictures:

Get the flash player here:

The Museums:

San Diego Children’s Museum

Literally across the street from the Conference hotel is the San Diego Children’s Museum. Personally, it’s one of the most impressive I’ve ever seen.

Lifting directly from the Children’s Museum web site, it “features innovative, provocative artworks that kids can touch, climb, or move (exhibitions); messy, hands-on art making opportunities (studios); and a variety of arts-based classes and camps (Arts Education Center). Rounded out with an organic cafe, abundant seating, quiet space for parents and infants, and an outdoor park, the Museum provides a comfortable and engaging environment for the entire family …”

(To really get a sense of the place, check out their Flickr slide shows at the bottom of the home page.)

San Diego Maritime Museum

Eight historic ships — ranging from the iconic Star of India to a Russian B-39 submarine — are docked together for you to climb aboard and explore.

Direct from their Web site: “The Maritime Museum of San Diego enjoys a worldwide reputation for excellence in restoring, maintaining and operating historic vessels. The museum has one of the world’s finest collections of historic ships, including the world’s oldest active ship, Star of India. Our collection of ships and exhibits are available for daily public tours.”

NOTE: Though it floats right next door, the USS Midway (aircraft carrier) Museum is separate from the Maritime Museum.

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego Downtown

MCASD has two locations. One in La Jolla (20 to 30 minutes from the Conference hotel) and the downtown extension (walkable from hotel).

From their Web site: “At MCASD Downtown, experience contemporary art in a historic setting — the Jacobs Building, formerly the Santa Fe Depot baggage building — and view site-specific installations by artists Jenny Holzer and Richard Serra.”


Given these (and the downtown area restaurant density, which we’ll discuss later), you could pretty much spend a week in San Diego just operating on foot out of the hotel. Not to mention the fact that you have a Conference to attend. Oh, yeah … that.

Casey DeLorme headshot (1)Casey DeLorme, APR, is an award-winning public relations professional with extensive experience in online/social media marketing, presentations/presentation coaching, special events, media relations, creative strategic planning] and crisis communications. He moved his firm, Getspine Communications, to San Diego (from Tucson, Ariz.) in 2007 because he wanted to surf and paraglide more often. He is a past chair of PRSA’s Western District and current co-chair of PRSA’s PRSSA Affiliate Task Force.

Join Casey at the PRSA 2009 International Conference: Delivering Value, November 7–10 in San Diego, CA!


Experience spectacular views in the heart of America’s Finest City.
Discover the perfect blend of coastal “cool” and downtown “hot” at the San Diego Marriott Hotel & Marina. Take in the relaxing waterfront views, and then get ready to explore the vibrant city just steps from the lobby doors. Conveniently located adjacent to the convention center and the Gaslamp Quarter’s shopping and restaurants, the hotel is also a short distance from the city’s sparkling beaches and must-see tourist attractions, including the famous San Diego Zoo, Mission Bay Aquatic Park and SeaWorld. If speed is more your style, you can rent personal watercraft and powerboats at the hotel’s marina. Two 25-story towers include 1,362 spacious nautical-themed guestrooms offering expansive views of the bustling city or San Diego Bay.

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