Dog gone! The prized annual SF event Corgi Con has been chased off Ocean Beach over some federal regulations, and is rescheduled for September on non-federal land at the Alameda County Fairgrounds.
Like many dearly beloved in-person San Francisco events, the annual Ocean Beach corgi rally Corgi Con took a three-year COVID hiatus, but returned in full glory in 2022. Yet that SF return of Corgi Con would prove to be, pardon the expression, short. The event is typically held in June or July, but this year has moved to Saturday, September 16, and all the way out at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton.
A Wednesday Corgi Con Facebook post says, “Unfortunately, there have been some regulation changes at Ocean Beach that would alter the way Corgi Con was held in the past.” SFist has reached out to Corgi Con organizers about the nature of these “regulation changes,” and we’ll update this post with any response. But the regulations may well be those around leashed and unleashed dogs.
Ocean Beach is not technically San Francisco city land, though many parks like Golden Gate Park are. Nor is it a state park, like the Candlestick Point State Recreation Area is. Ocean Beach is a national park under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service, or rather, it is one part of the larger Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) series of parks. And federal park rules are pretty clear about dogs needing to be on leashes.
Rules vary by national park, but generally require that dogs be kept on “a leash no longer than six feet” at all times. Unfortunately, there have been times when dogs have killed endangered or protected species.
Yes, GGNRA does allow off-leash dogs in many areas. But the only section of Ocean Beach that allows off-leash dogs is “Ocean Beach from the north end to Stairwell 21.” As depicted above, that is the north end of Ocean Beach only down to the red dot. In other words, the vast majority of Ocean Beach requires dogs to be on a leash, though there are brief seasonal exceptions.
And Corgi Con has a number of doggie obstacle course competitions in which keeping the dog on a leash simply would not be feasible.
So that may be the reason Corgi Con had to move, and we’ve reached out to the National Park Service for clarification. But the 2023 event is officially moved to Pleasanton, where they will unleash the tiny hounds this fall.
Images: Cheryl Guerrero, Hoodline