Author spotlight: Kelly Herrick

Kelly has been editor at large for the Journal since 2007, reporting on news in Montecito and beyond. She is also a licensed realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, and is a member of Montecito and Santa Barbara’s top real estate team, Calcagno & Hamilton.

Gorjana Opens in Montecito
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 15, 2021

Contemporary jewelry store Gorjana has opened on Coast Village Road, bringing its popular mid-priced and fine jewelry to Montecito. Founded in 2004, the Laguna Beach-based jewelry brand is owned by wife and husband team Gorjana and Jason Griffin Reidel, who set out to build a casual jewelry line that was “quintessential California.”  Originating from the […]

Land Use Discusses Highways 101 & 192, and Walking Paths
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 15, 2021

Kirsten Ayars, rep for the Highway 101 widening project, reported on Tuesday at the Montecito Association Land Use and Transportation Committee that recent attempts at deterring the double crested cormorants in the construction area at Sheffield Drive have been negatively affecting neighbors, and that plans have shifted in order to deter the birds while not […]

Easter at Montecito Country Mart
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 15, 2021

This past Saturday, Montecito Country Mart hosted a socially-distant photo op with the Easter Bunny, welcoming more than 200 families over the course of the day. County Line Florals created an Easter floral backdrop for the photo moment, and popped up with their 1965 VW Transporter, Betty, with Easter blooms for the day.  All proceeds […]

Montecito Club to Reopen Next Week
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 15, 2021

Ty Warner’s Montecito Club is set to reopen Tuesday, April 13, after being closed for more than a year during the COVID pandemic. The Club, which features a Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course and social club, has expanded its offerings to include new outdoor amenities, including tennis lessons and clinics for all ages, movies on […]

Women Recognized by CSS and MUS
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 8, 2021

Montecito school superintendents Dr. Amy Alzina, Superintendent of Cold Spring School District, and Dr. Anthony Ranii, Superintendent of Montecito Union School District, recognize the leadership of three outstanding women leaders in the local community in honor of Women’s History Month, including Montecito Association Executive Director Sharon Byrne. In addition to her work with Montecito Association, […]

Read ‘N Post To Close
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 8, 2021

Late last week customers at Read ‘N Post were surprised to learn that the Montecito retail landmark, located in Montecito Country Mart, shared plans to close at the end of April. In business in Montecito for nearly 40 years, Read ‘N Post is a favorite among locals who go to peruse the extensive collection of […]

Electric Bikes Coming to Coast Village Road
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 1, 2021

At their monthly board meeting on Thursday, March 18, the Coast Village Association Board of Directors heard from Jesse Rosenberg, General Manager of Santa Barbara BCycle, as she pitched the group on bringing electric bicycle docking stations to Coast Village Road. The private bike share company has been working with the City of Santa Barbara […]

Hot Springs Pathway Project
By Kelly Herrick   |   April 1, 2021

Over the weekend, volunteers with the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade were out in full force beautifying a newly-built pathway on the lower portion of Hot Springs Road. The next phase of the project, which will start at Casa Dorinda and end at East Valley Road, is set to begin in early May and will take […]

State of Our Schools
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 26, 2021

Next Tuesday, March 30, Santa Barbara Unified School District Superintendent Hilda Maldonado will share the status of the district’s schools. The presentation is hosted by the Santa Barbara Education Foundation and sponsored by Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Ruud & Romo, LogMeIn, UCLA Health, DA Davidson, KBZ Architects, Hohbach-Lewin, Oniracom, and Lazy Acres.  The virtual event features […]

(Most) Local Businesses Permitted to Open Indoors
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 25, 2021

At a Board of Supervisors hearing on Tuesday, Santa Barbara County’s Public Health Director Van Do-Reynoso announced that the county, after meeting several decreasing COVID-19 case rate thresholds, would be entering the less restrictive Red Tier outlined in California’s pandemic blueprint.  Do-Reynoso reported that COVID-19 case rates have decreased 42% over the last two weeks, […]

Latest on School Reopening
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 18, 2021

In addition to the majority of the business sector permitted to reopen indoors with modifications earlier this week, most county public schools – bolstered by happy and tired parents and caregivers – reopened in early March. Montecito public schools, Montecito Union School and Cold Spring School, have been open for in-person learning since late September, […]

Emergency Ordinance Extended
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 18, 2021

On Tuesday, February 23, the Santa Barbara City Council extended its Emergency Economic Recovery Ordinance until March 8, 2022. The ordinance, which was adopted last May, continues the temporary closure of certain streets, on-street parking, and public parking to allow outdoor dining and outdoor business uses in the public right-of-way or on private property, which […]

Colonial Williamsburg at MUS
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 18, 2021

In an effort to provide a special experience to their 5th grade class, teachers at Montecito Union School brought Colonial Williamsburg to MUS. “Most years, fifth graders are able to attend the D.C./Colonial Williamsburg trip as a culmination of their studies of the early history of our country. Clearly, that wasn’t in the cards this year, but our […]

Coast Village Association Seeks to Form Improvement District
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 11, 2021

At a City Council hearing on Tuesday, March 2, the Council voted unanimously to approve an ordinance related to forming a Community Benefit District on Coast Village Road, an initiative set forth by the Coast Village Association Board of Directors. “This is just the beginning, the first starting block,” said CVA Board President Bob Ludwick, […]

Food Donations at La Cumbre Deli
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 11, 2021

For the last several months, Larry Balducci, the beloved owner of Plaza Deli in La Cumbre Plaza, has been offering his expansive and easily accessible patio as a drop off location for pet food donations. “After hearing all of these stories about how people can’t afford to feed their pets during the pandemic, I knew […]

Concern Over Hot Springs Trail Project
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 11, 2021

A newly built pedestrian pathway along Hot Springs Road has sparked some neighborhood controversy, which was discussed at the Montecito’s Land Use and Transportation Committee meeting this past Tuesday.  Bucket Brigade founder Abe Powell, who was an integral part of the County-led road enhancement project, explained to the Committee that the impetus for the trail […]

Bissel Clinic
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

For 25 years, Bissell Clinic in Montecito’s Upper Village has been helping Montecito and Santa Barbara residents deal with both chronic and acute pain. The chiropractic and physical therapy clinic provides multidisciplinary care with state-of-the-art equipment, offering patients a broad array of therapies to hone in on their ailments. “After being here this long, people […]

Miramar Receives Accolades
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

Rosewood Miramar Beach announced last week that it has received distinguished accolades from three leading travel authorities. The distinctions include a Gold Badge in U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Best Hotels rankings, as well as being named the best hotel in Santa Barbara and the ninth best hotel in California by the publication. This […]

Mail Thief Arrested
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

Thanks in part to a vigilant Montecito resident, a suspect was arrested late last week for mail theft and numerous other theft-related charges. Juan Carlos Coronado-Mendoza, 31, of Santa Barbara, was arrested at his home on the 1200-block of Liberty Street last week.  According to the Sheriff’s Department, on December 29, 2020, a victim of […]

Baby Boom at ELMO
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

El Montecito Early School Director Suzy Dobreski reports that six families at the beloved preschool are currently expecting babies! She sent over this photo of the expectant mothers, with prayer shawls that were knitted by members of El Montecito Presbyterian Church.  Closed for almost two months around the holidays, the small preschool reopened in late […]

Deterring the Birds in Summerland
By Kelly Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

With ongoing construction on the Sheffield Drive bridge as part of the Highway 101 widening project, many drivers have noticed mylar streamers and balloons in the eucalyptus trees on the nearby bluffs. Both the Audubon Society and Heal the Ocean have received many concerns over what looks like broken mylar balloons in the trees. Kirsten […]

San Ysidro Bridge Ribbon Cutting
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 25, 2021

Last Thursday, February 11, several community leaders and nearby residents came out to a small ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the opening of the new bridge across San Ysidro Creek at East Mountain Drive. Public Works Director Scott McGolpin, First District Supervisor Das Williams, Public Works Deputy Directors Julie Hagen and Chris Sneddon, Bucket Brigade […]

New MPC Commissioner to be Appointed
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 25, 2021

The Santa Barbara County Executive Office is seeking to fill a vacancy on the Montecito Planning Commission, effective immediately. The vacancy is left from the departure of Charles Newman, who stepped down from the Commission at the end of his second term in December.  Newman was appointed to the Montecito Planning Commission in January 2017, […]

Sepi Consignment Closes
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 18, 2021

After six years in business, Coast Village Road consignment boutique, Sepi, has closed. Owner Sepideh Babri took over the shop in early 2015, when it was named Matti & Me after then-owners Matti Bourgault and Wendy Nanon Smith.The high-end luxury consignment store featured women’s clothing, handbags, shoes and boots, belts, sunglasses, jewelry, and accessories, in […]

New Stores at Montecito Country Mart
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 11, 2021

Two new stores are calling Montecito Country Mart home as business picks up throughout the Mart following the lifting of the state’s stay-at-home order in January. “People are here, they are shopping and eating, all in a safe way,” says Mart rep Kristin Teufel, who introduced us to the new shops earlier this week.  The […]

In Business in the Upper Village: CODA Studio
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 4, 2021

A new design studio and custom furniture showroom is open daily in the Upper Village, located next to Tecolote Book Shop, in the space once occupied by Oliver and Espig. CODA Studio offers an elevated style of distinct furnishings, artwork, home décor, and lounge wear.  The studio, which is a subsidiary of their manufacturing business, […]

Festival of Hearts Goes Virtual
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 4, 2021

For the last 22 years, Montecito’s Friendship Center has hosted a fun-filled pre-Valentine’s event to raise funds for the Center’s HEART (Help Elders At Risk Today) Program, subsidizing the cost of adult day services for low-income aging and dependent adults and their families. This year, thanks to the pandemic, the event is going virtual, and […]

New Bridge at San Ysidro Creek
By Kelly Herrick   |   February 4, 2021

Nearly three years to the day after the 1/9 Debris Flow that damaged or destroyed over 600 homes as well as debilitated Montecito infrastructure, the Santa Barbara County Public Works Department made a significant step in the rebuilding process with the replacement of the East Mountain Drive Bridge over San Ysidro Creek. The bridge, which […]

Covid Restrictions Crush Local Businesses
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 21, 2021

Earlier this week, Jeannine’s Bakery owner Alison Hardey announced the closure of her downtown store; the latest local casualty of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing stay-at-home order that has shuttered most California restaurants, allowing them to be open solely for takeout orders. “It wasn’t an easy decision, it’s kind of like ‘which child do […]

New ADU Revisions
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 21, 2021

Santa Barbara County Long Range Planning Staff is once again hard at work updating local ordinances pertaining to Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) that comply with state laws. We’ve been reporting on ADU laws since 2017, when Assembly Bill 2299 and Senate Bill 1069 reduced barriers, streamlined the approval process, and expanded the capacity to accommodate […]

Homeless Camp Cleared Prior to King Tides
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 21, 2021

An abandoned homeless camp surrounded by trash, bicycle parts, car batteries, flooded tents, and more became an eyesore on the “Graveyards” beach in Montecito, at the base of the cliff below the Santa Barbara Cemetery. In a recent newsletter, Heal the Ocean says they received a call about it from a concerned citizen last week, […]

Montecito Association Tackles Multiple Land Use Issues
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 14, 2021

The Montecito Association Land Use Committee met earlier this week, and took a look back at the major land use projects the committee worked on in 2020. “We recognized early on after the debris flow that there would be multiple large scale projects to tackle,” said MA Executive Director Sharon Byrne, adding that the projects […]

Jules Coast Caviar
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 14, 2021

A new gourmet food boutique is slated to open for business this weekend, in the new commercial space next to Folded Hills Wine Tasting Room in developer John Price’s mixed-use building at Olive Mill. Jules Coast Caviar is an emporium for the finest foodstuffs from the West Coast and beyond, carefully curated by owners and […]

In Business: Persona Pizzeria
By Kelly Herrick   |   January 7, 2021

Persona Pizzeria on State Street has reopened under new ownership, despite statewide stay-at-home orders that have shut down indoor and outdoor dining in the majority of counties in California. “We know it’s not the optimal time to open a new business, but we are super COVID-safe and looking forward to offering the same delicious, freshly […]

Miramar Compliance Update
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 31, 2020

Last Wednesday, December 16, reps from the Rosewood Miramar Resort were in front of the Montecito Planning Commission providing an annual compliance update related to parking, events, and hours of operation of the hotel’s Beach Bar. “Our primary goal is to be a good member of the community,” said Miramar owner Rick Caruso’s Vice President […]

Rebuilding & Recovery Update
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 31, 2020

Also at MPC last week, County planner Joe Dargel gave an update on the rebuilding following the Thomas Fire and 1/9 debris flow, nearly two years after the debris flow damaged or destroyed 631 structures in Montecito, and took the lives of 23 members of our community.  When the County first took stock of the […]

Montecito Association Meets
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 24, 2020

Last week, the Montecito Association Board of Directors held its monthly board meeting via Zoom.  During Community Reports, Montecito Union School and Cold Spring School superintendents Anthony Ranii and Amy Alzina reported that in-person learning continues to go well, despite increased COVID-19 cases in Santa Barbara County and beyond. Both schools have increased staff testing, […]

Chief Widling to Retire
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 24, 2020

Also happening at MFPD, Montecito Fire Division Chief of Operations, Alan Widling, is set to retire on December 30. The #2 in command at MFPD, Chief Widling has worked the last 31 years of his life in the service of others.  Widling was hired as a full-time firefighter by the Montecito Fire Department in September […]

New Storm Map to be Released
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 24, 2020

This Thursday, December 17, the Montecito Fire Department, in partnership with the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the Carpinteria Summerland Fire Protection District, and First District Supervisor Das Williams will host a virtual community meeting to provide winter preparedness information and to publicly release the updated Interactive Storm Impact Consideration Risk Map. […]

Real Estate Snapshot
By Kelly Herrick   |   December 24, 2020

To say that Montecito real estate was “hot” in the third quarter of 2020 is a gross understatement; in fact, the market activity in late summer/early fall broke records across the board in both sales price and number of transactions, in both the 93108 and beyond.  Q3 sales in 2020 were up a whopping 156% […]