Pacific Beach Community Surf Garden has started to ‘bloom’

A flower design made out of surf boards decorated with mosaic is being installed on the PB Recreation Center’s north wall.
A flower design made out of surf boards decorated with mosaic is being installed on the Pacific Beach Recreation Center’s north wall.
(Brian Curry)

A project four years in the making is becoming a reality at the Pacific Beach Recreation Center.

Installation of the Pacific Beach Community Surf Garden — also referred to as the mosaic mural project — has begun. It was designed by local artist Rob Tobin, who specializes in re-claimed materials.

The Pacific Beach Town Council has been working with Tobin to beautify the rec center with the mosaic murals. They are just part of a larger improvement endeavor to improve the center’s interior and exterior.

Artist Rob Tobin with part of the mosaic mural he has designed.
(Brian Curry)

Two mosaics are planned, one depicting flowers on the north wall and the other a sunset on the south wall. Surf boards being used in the design were donated by community members.

“Come by the recreation center and take a look,” said Brian Curry, who has been involved in the project and is the 2023 PB Honorary Mayor. “It is spectacular and will be an incredible artistic statement.”

Curry said the project is being fully funded by the community via donations. Another $50,000 is needed to complete it due to the engineering work and materials costing more than originally budgeted.

“Costs have not yet exceeded our fundraising donations, but there are significantly less funds to complete the project as envisioned (e.g., lighting, landscaping, etc.) and the intended use of excess funds for other rec center improvements,” Curry said.

There are five donation levels listed on the PB Town Council’s website at They range from a 6-inch surfboard-shaped tile for a $50 to $99 donation to a 24-inch tile for a contribution of $5,000 or more. Each will include the name of a person or entity. All donations are tax-deductible.

“Please tell friends, family members, acquaintances, businesses, everyone, about the project and our need for additional funds to make the Surf Garden an example of a community-sponsored artistic beautification endeavor for the benefit of all the public be they residents, visitors and workers here in PB,” Curry said.