Cruising Oral Histories of Balboa Park



at Marston Point Parking Lot ie the “Fruit Loop” 

GPS coordinates: 32.724951, -117.158503

Friday, February 24, 5:30 - 11pm

ADA accessible. Free, no reservation required


Though hookup apps are the primary forum for orchestrating casual sex, many remember how park restrooms, foliage, and parking lots facilitated the lost art of cruising.  Since the 50’s, Balboa Park has served as a place for the LGBTQ community to come of age, to encounter the AIDS crisis, and even to experience fatal hate crimes.

In collaboration with Lambda LGBTQ archives, we introduce a second season of accounts from those who participated in, surveilled, or managed cruising culture in Balboa Park. For one night, the parking lot of Fruit Loop will be transformed into a listening theater. Parked cars will play the firsthand stories of the men and women who remember when Balboa Park was a prime meeting place during a time when being gay was illegal.



Performance artist, poet, and concert pianist Todd Moellenberg is our field correspondent for the month, as he takes his daily walk to Fruit Loop. He will be posting pictures and observations along the way to the Parkeology website and instagram feed.

Path Poem, Todd Moellenberg




Carla Coshow, Hillcrest resident since 1975, Owner of The Flame lesbian bar | 10:24

Big Mike, Bartender, Photographer, LGBT activist, and community fundraiser | 16:40

Anonymous | 13:40

Rick Ford, Adult Industry Entrepreneur | 11:27

Charles David, A Letter to the People of San Diego, read by Walter Meyer | 6:00

J Marcus Newman, Photographer | 13:35

Erik Trayvon Benson, Event Planner | 14:12

Giselle de la Rosa, Activist | 12:23

Jim Hurtado, ESL teacher | 14:08

Alberto R. Cortés, Mama’s Kitchen Executive Director | 9:42

Todd Moellenberg, Fruit Loop Field Correspondent, Path Poem | 2:30


Kate Clark, interviewer and story editor

Angela Risi, story editor  

Samuel Dunscombe, audio post production

Walter Meyer (Lambda Archives Manager), interview liaison

Erik Trayvon Benson, interview recruitment

Marina Grize, marketing

Lissa Corona, table host

Parker Bray, equipment support

Jeremy Raab, production assistant

Diana Benavidez, production assistant

Peter Chen, production assistant

Jeszi McPeak, production assistant

Rafa Rios, photography

Todd Moellenberg, Parkeology Artist in Residence: Fruit Loop Correspondent

Car Donors

Samuel Dunscombe

Gabrielle Ramlow

Esther Valenzuela

Joseph Swift

Joe Yorty

Minxuan Lin

Kate Clark

Todd Moellenberg

Rafa Rios

Jeremy Raab

Ryan Hand

Lucas Spenser

Ren Ebel

Brian Schoner

Dr. Joel Trambley

Peter Chen

Jason Crane


Sarah Schwartz

Maria Mathioudakis

Ken Selnick

Angela Risi

Thanks to:

Walter Meyer

Lambda Archives

all Queen’s Circle Interviewees

Rage Magazine

Amy Sanchez

Misael Diaz

Marina Grize

Lissa Corona

Steve Stopper

Joshua Rapp

Ranger Jon Anderson

Ranger Kim Duclo

Bruce Martinez

Mario Llanos

City of San Diego Park and Recreation Department