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Pier 39

My stroll with my niece along the Embarcadero to Fisherman's Wharf included Pier 39.  The pier was converted into a shopping center in 1978.
This Coca Cola sign was not at the shopping center, but across the Embarcadero a few blocks up.  It has been there for as long as I can remember, and has been weather beaten and rusty for a long time, as well.  Maybe it was made to look like that!  There are two stages for performers and musicians within the complex.  Admission is usually free, although the performers do work for tips.  One of the biggest attractions along the pier, though, was an accident!
In 1990, sea lions began camping out on the docks.  Look at them, they're so cute and docile ... not!  Boat owners could not get to their vessels -- the sea lions weighed down the floating docks and chased away anyone brave enough to walk out onto them!  I remember the sea lions were originally considered a nuisance and plans were underway to chase them off.  But then the boisterous pinnipeds began to attract crowds.  And those crowds brought business to the restaurants and stores in the shopping center.  So new docks were installed and the boats were relocated.  The sea lions still attract a large crowd (caveat if you plan on visiting: the smell is quite strong), and they are the only performers that are completely free to see!