Local People: The Man Who Created The Valley Club

By James Buckley   |   July 22, 2021
“Dr. Alister MacKenzie in 97 Photos 1926-1934,” was produced by Barbara Briggs-Anderson
Barbara Briggs-Anderson, author of Dr. Alister MacKenzie in 97 Photos 1926-1934

During the years 1928 and 1929, Dr. Alister MacKenzie headed up the design and construction of the Cypress Point Club, as well as The Valley Club of Montecito, five years before his final masterpiece: Augusta National, upon which he collaborated with golf-world legend Bobby Jones. Anyone who has been in the men’s locker room at the Cypress Point Club since 2016 (and who hasn’t, really?), would recognize many of the photos on the walls of that illustrious club, as Montecito resident Barbara Briggs-Anderson supplied them all. She is curator of the Julian P. Graham Historical Photographic Collection in Pebble Beach, with an archive of 26,000-plus images and has over 3,000-plus of those images on her website www.julianpgraham.com or www.loonhill.com.

Barbara’s latest effort, an eBook entitled Dr. Alister MacKenzie in 97 Photos 1926-1934, documents the good doctor’s physical appearance and his activities during the final eight years of his life through photographer Julian P. Graham’s historical lens, playing golf at Cypress Point, Pasatiempo, and Pebble Beach Golf Links. Dr. MacKenzie, considered by many to be the greatest international golf architect in the history of the game, designed such notable courses as Augusta National in Georgia (home of the Masters Tournament, which began in 1934), Cypress Point Club, and Pasatiempo (both in the Monterey area), and The Valley Club of Montecito. Then, there is Lahinch in Ireland, Royal Melbourne in Australia, and Titirangi in New Zealand, among others.

The eBook concludes with the 1934 image of Dr. MacKenzie’s funeral with his casket in the backyard of his home on the 6th hole at Pasatiempo with his neighbors and friends paying their last respects. You can order your copy through www.loonhill.com or www.julianpgraham.com

Frank is Steaming

Frank Hotchkiss (Yale 1964) is out to change Yale policy

As a Yale graduate (1964), former Santa Barbara City Council member, and mayoral candidate Frank Hotchkiss, who has since moved to Savannah, Georgia, with his wife, Sandi, says he didn’t pay much attention to his alma mater “until it became apparent,” he writes via e-mail, “that it was headed in the wrong direction. (Yale) had adopted a negative view of the college’s past, as well as America’s history, while not celebrating the great things that both had done (including three recent U.S. presidents from Yale).”

Other alumni felt the same and sought to provide input into Yale’s policies. Two months ago, Yale summarily said, “No, we don’t want your input,” and eliminated the sole independent alumni candidate for Yale’s governing body, the Yale Corporation Board. “That was the last straw,” he says, adding “and one that has been echoed at major universities nationwide. Elite academic arrogance would be the nice way to call it.”

So, he’s out to change things. He and others have begun a GoFundMe campaign to purchase a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal “to bring attention,” he writes, “to Yale’s haughty treatment of its alumni.”

Nearly $10,000 has been raised and many donations — to Frank’s surprise — are not even from Yale alumni. Their goal is $18,000, and Hotchkiss asks that you “take a look at the campaign page (GoFundMe Yale Alumni Election Test) and join it if you like.”

Deacon Skis with the Team

Deacon Buckley skis with the Flying Ace All-Stars team

There they are in full ski gear, the Flying Ace All Stars, in front of the practice jumps at the Olympic facility in Park City, Utah, where Olympic hopefuls practice during the summer months. The young man without a helmet in the front row is 10-year-old Deacon Buckley, grandson of Montecito Journal founder James Buckley. Deacon is too young to make the team but is an all-star in his own right, having garnered four gold medals and having garnered regional and national slopestyle skiing championships in his age group. Many Flying Ace All Stars are heading for the 2021/22 Winter Olympics in Russia this winter. Deacon is too young to compete at that level but does have his eyes on the 2029/30 Winter Olympics in… TBD.

Rooting for Tab

Tab Hunter recounted on his home webpage before he passed away that even during the time he was making movies, he “showed hunters and jumpers, judged, and also gave riding clinics”

Montecito real-estate maven and equestrian supporter Teresa McWilliams is heading up the effort to not only save the Earl Warren Showgrounds, but she’s also spearheading a movement to honor the late Tab Hunter, a longtime Montecito resident and the ultimate horseman; he owned and rode a horse for most of his life, even while becoming the biggest star in Hollywood in the 1950s and ‘60s, and especially here in Montecito.

McWilliams is hoping to raise $500,000 in the lead up to the Santa Barbara National. She qualified that in order to raise this money from the friends and fans of Hunter, the money would have to be used to purchase the naming of an arena after him. State rules require a majority of the Board quorum to approve this requirement, but she’s been having trouble putting a quorum together. She now has the support of Equine Evac and hopes that her goal will finally become a reality.


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