Polo Helping People Helping People

By Richard Mineards   |   June 20, 2023
Deb Biddinger, Susan Webber, Nancy Hunsicker, Alanna Tarkington, Valerie Kissell, and John Kuelbs at the Santa Ynez Valley Polo Classic (photo by Priscilla)

A sold-out crowd of 420, many of them in magnificent millinery, descended on the Piocho Ranch home of the Happy Canyon Vineyard owned by Santa Barbara Polo Club billionaire patron Tom Barrack for the 11th anniversary Santa Ynez Valley Polo Classic that raised around $200,000 for People Helping People, a Solvang-based organization providing human and social services.

Among the guests noshing on lunch from Jake Francis at the Valley Piggery while quaffing La Lieff sparkling rosé, Happy Canyon wine, and Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company beer were Joel Baker, Chuck and Margarita Lande, T.J. Barrack, Valerie Kissell, Monty Roberts, Claudia Uretz, Sharon Landecker, Brian and Shamra Strange (owners of The Inn at Mattei’s Tavern in Los Olivos), and hat contest judge Hayley Firestone.

The ubiquitous Geoff Green, head of the Santa Barbara City College Foundation, acted as emcee and money raiser for the bash co-chaired by the tony triumvirate of Nancy Hunsicker, Deb Biddinger, and Alanna Tarkington, with Allan Hancock College student Adele Westerfield singing the National Anthem.

An assortment of polo matches kept the guests entertained.


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