More than 350 units of blood were collected over three days last week at the fourth annual Padres Summer Blood Drive at Petco Park. I know I am not alone when I say it sure does not seem like summer without baseball, but is nice to see some activity at Petco Park.

Presented by Sycuan Casino, the drive ran Tuesday, June 16 through Thursday June 18 and was held at the park’s Lexus Premier Parking Lot. VIP donors included Vice President of Community and Military Affairs for the San Diego Padres, Tom Seidler.

“We are grateful to the Padres and Sycuan Casino for partnering with us to make the drive happen this year, “ said San Diego Blood Bank CEO David Wellis. “With many organizations not being able to hold blood drives right now, this couldn’t have come at a better time.”

Every year this drive kicks off the Blood Bank’s appeal to the community to donate during the summer months. This drive also marked the first time bloodmobiles were out in the community since COVID-19.

With limited giving locations, blood is highly needed right now. To give blood, schedule an appointment at SanDiegoBloodBank.org.

• • •

I hope this is a good sign that life is getting back to something near normal. We received information today from the city of San Diego that parking enforcement in the city will restart as of July 1 as summer gets into full swing.

City staff had consulted with several business groups representing communities across San Diego and business owners were overwhelmingly in support of resuming parking enforcement, specifically meter time limits as restaurants and other area businesses reopen, according to the city.

The enforcement will begin with a two-week grace period where violators will receive written warnings, according to the city. But citations will be back on July 15.

“We know many residents are looking forward to visiting their favorite restaurants, breweries, cafes, shops and stores, and restarting our local economy,” said Deputy Chief Operating Officer Erik Caldwell “As the city begins to take careful and measured steps to reopen, we need to make sure parking enforcement, especially in our business districts, allows for a healthy flow of customers, ensures accessibility and reinvests back into our communities.”

San Diego suspended citations for vehicles violating street sweeping, metered parking, time limits, and yellow commercial zones on March 16 when the stay-at-home order went into effect.

“Local business owners have shouldered the burden of our unprecedented situation the past few months. Now, we are finally starting to sense a return to business and life as usual. While free parking is convenient, parking meters help incentivize turnover at prime parking spaces in business districts,” said Chris Clark of San Diego’s Small Business Alliance.

The city recommends visiting sandiego.gov/parking for anyone who would like specific information.

• • •

With COVID-19 dominating health related headlines for the past several months, it was nice to hear of a recent $1 million gift to support the clinical and research missions of the Blood and Marrow Transplantation Program run jointly by UC San Diego Health and Sharp HealthCare The donation was made by Robert Shillman, founder and CEO of Cognex Corporation . Shillman was diagnosed with lymphoma three years ago and after a nation-wide search sought out care at the Moores Cancer Center. He credits Dr. Edward D. Ball, a leading hematologist-oncologist and director of the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program at UC San Diego Health, for saving his life.

“I was fortunate to have been referred to Dr. Ball when I was first diagnosed with lymphoma three years ago, and I am alive today because of his care,” Shillman said. Shillman is the founder, chairman and chief culture officer of Cognex Corporation.

The gift will fund a four-year award that helped recruit prominent physician-scientist Fotios Asimakopoulos, M.D., to the Moores Cancer Center.