Author spotlight: Richard Mineards

Richard covered the Royal Family for Britain’s Daily Mirror and Daily Mail, and was an editor on New York Magazine. He was also a national anchor on CBS, a commentator on ABC Network News, gossip on The Joan Rivers Show and Geraldo Rivera, host on E! TV, a correspondent on the syndicated show Extra, a commentator on the KTLA Morning News and Entertainment Tonight. He moved to Montecito 13 years ago.

Spring-ing to Success
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Santa Barbara City College hosted its fifth annual Spring Forward! college foundation gala on the Great Meadow on the West Campus under new CEO Bobbi Abram, who had only been on the job four days after moving from a similar position in Pasadena. “Let the fourth be with you!” she told the more than 300 […]

A Great Two Minutes
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

A torrent of tony tête toppers descended on the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club when social gadabout Rick Oshay and Teresa Kuskey, founder of the popular La Boheme dance troupe, hosted their fourth annual Run for the Roses bash, celebrating the 150th Kentucky Derby. Known as the Greatest Two Minutes in Sport, the Churchill […]

Polo de Mayo
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Cinco de Mayo took on a whole new complexion when the Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club launched its 113th season with the 12-goal Lucid Motors Pope Challenge, a hotly-contested match between Antelope – led by Grant Palmer, whose father Geoff is a L.A. real estate tycoon – and Budweiser beer heir Andy Busch’s Folded […]

Achievement Over Lunch
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

The Association for Women in Communication Santa Barbara hosted its 16th annual Women of Achievement awards lunch at the Cabrillo Pavilion honoring four outstanding educators. The 155 guests were welcomed by co-chairs Brooke Holland and Judith Smith-Meyer with honorees including Katya Armistead, an assistant vice chancellor and Dean of Student life at UCSB; Yolanda Medina-Garcia, […]

Fantastic Mr. Fox 
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Jonathan Fox, who retired as artistic director of the Ensemble Theatre Company in June after 17 years at the helm when it moved from the rustic Alhecama Theater to the New Vic, was lauded for his work at a 76-guest dinner thrown by Santa Barbara’s Jewish Foundation at the historic Santa Barbara Club. Cyndi Silverman, […]

A Powerful Brunch
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

What a difference a year makes! When MOXI: The Wolf Museum of Exploration and Innovation hosted its 6th annual Power of MOXI spring brunch in 2023, the event had to be moved inside because of the frigid weather. Last week the fun fête, co-chaired by Amber Kaplan and Angie McGrath, couldn’t have been more perfect […]

A Shining Night
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Santa Barbara Historical Museum’s latest exhibition celebrates half a century of Summer Solstice, the colorful and creative annual parade on State Street. The event started in 1974 when mime and artist Michael Gonzales celebrated his birthday with friends on the town’s main thoroughfare. Fifty years later nearly 100,000 people line the street to experience something […]

Taking a Gander of the Stage
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

After 9/11 the small town of Gander, Newfoundland, with a population of 10,000 residents, was overrun with nearly 7,000 stranded passengers after the FAA shut down airspace nationwide, forcing all planes to land at nearby airports. A total of 38 planes, carrying 6,579 passengers and crew, landed in Gander as part of Operation Yellow Ribbon, […]

May Day Revelry
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Santa Barbara Revels, under founder Susan Keller, held its 16th annual May Day Celebration at the Paseo Nuevo. Mica Basilici, the tony troupe’s song leader, taught fascinated members of the public spring-themed songs, while the Revels dancer leader Helen Pasley taught “Sellinger’s Round,” a May Day circle dance dating from 1670. The dancers also performed […]

A Blooming Bash
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Riviera Ridge School’s floral-themed annual gala truly bloomed, with more than 250 guests at the Rosewood Miramar more than surpassing its $200,000 fundraising goal. With lush floral centerpieces adorning each table in the Chandelier Room, and whimsical six-foot tall papier mâché filling the space, the Spirit Blooms bash was led by Katrina Sprague and Mari […]

House on Market
By Richard Mineards   |   May 14, 2024

Tech mogul Eric Schmidt, who owns Montecito’s sprawling Solana estate, the former home of Bill and Sandi Nicholson, has put his Bay Area compound on the market. The three-acre property, created by combining three contiguous parcels in the tony township of Atherton, home to America’s priciest zip code for seven consecutive years, is asking $24.5 […]

A Divot-ing Dinner
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

Divotees were out in force as the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club hosted the second annual Dinner & Divots bash with 110 guests raising around $100,000 for Lobero Theatre Associates’ program to support underserved local youth music education, which also honored the popular theater’s 100th building anniversary. The tented fun fête, a tiara’s toss […]

Not Toi-ng Around
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

Supporters of Santa Barbara Choral Society were clearly in the right aria when the popular 76-year-old choir hosted Toi, Toi, Toi, an evening of operatic enchantment at the Rockwood Woman’s Club with 110 guests, many in Tosca attire, raising around $70,000 during the sunset soirée. After cocktails on the terrace, followed by a musical toast […]

One Worth Remembering
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

With its tantalizing title “The Most Famous Woman You’ve Never Heard Of” the historic Santa Barbara Club was packed when 64 eager guests of Montecito Bank & Trust’s MClub gathered to find out who local historian and Noozhawk scribe Erin Graffy de Garcia would be talking about in her one-hour lecture. The subject London-born Kathleen […]

Dancing the LINES
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

Alonzo King LINES Ballet, the latest hour-long dance production staged by UCSB’s popular Arts & Lectures at the Arlington, was a real showstopper. The talented company staged Deep River, which premiered last year as part of LINES Ballet’s 40th anniversary, based on more than four decades of thought-provoking dance. The production is the result of […]

Here’s Hope
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

The Santa Barbara Education Foundation held its annual Hope Awards at the Santa Barbara Historical Museum honoring local heroes of public education with 160 guests raising more than $50,000 with a paddle raise benefitting the Teacher Grants program, which has given 387 grants since 2018 with more than $685,000 invested in classrooms. The two recipients […]

New Neighbor
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

Winemaker and animal activist’s Gretchen Lieff’s new Montecito home was socially gridlocked when she hosted a bustling housewarming bash for 60 guests with popular pianist Gil Rosas tinkling the ivories. Gretchen didn’t have far to go to find her new four bedroom, five bathroom Arcady 1961 property designed by Carl Hillmann, given it’s just a […]

An Evening of Fireworks
By Richard Mineards   |   May 7, 2024

Santa Barbara singer Katy Perry was honored in Beverly Hills last week. The former Dos Pueblos High student was presented with the Colleagues Champion of Children Award for her philanthropy at the 35th annual spring lunch at the Beverly Wilshire. She co-founded the Fireworks Foundation in 2019 with her sister Angela Lerche with the mission […]

It’s Chukka Time
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club opens its 113th season on Sunday (May 5) kicking off an action-packed schedule filled with exciting tournaments and events that will showcase some of the world’s most talented equestrians from across the globe. With a record number of teams and players participating at every level, this season is set […]

Zpectacular Performance
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

Opera Santa Barbara sold out both performances at the Lobero of its highly entertaining show Zorro by Hector Armienta, who wrote both the music and the libretto. The action character, a sort of Spanish Robin Hood, made his debut in a 1919 novel The Curse of Capistrano by author Johnston McCulley. The action – with […]

Foundational Persons
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

It was a very in-tents occasion when a giant marquee covered the Hilton Hotel’s rotunda when the Santa Barbara Foundation held its 81st Persons of the Year lunch, with awards going to Jim Morouse and Peter Schuyler, whose mother Jane Schuyler won the award in 1997, making them the first mother-son duo to be so […]

Papal Paper
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

What to get the man who pretty much has everything? That was the quandary faced by Montecito Bank & Trust president George Leis when, as chairman of the National YMCA, he had an audience with 87-year-old Pope Francis at the Vatican earlier this month. His Holiness was presented with a book created by Fr Joe […]

Titan-ing the Score
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

Santa Barbara Symphony wrapped its 71st season on a high note at the Granada with Mahler Meets Klezmer: Titans of Sound. The concert, conducted by veteran maestro Nir Kabaretti, featured Grammy and Juno-nominated clarinet soloist, band leader and composer David Krakauer. The entertaining musical journey started with Mozart’s Overture to The Abduction from the Seraglio, […]

A Compassionate Campaign
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

Hospice of Santa Barbara has launched a Legacy of Compassion campaign to coincide with its 50th anniversary. CEO David Selberg announced the campaign, which helps with activities throughout the year, at a Shining Light Society spring reception at its Riviera headquarters, just a tiara’s toss from the Belmond El Encanto. Behavior analyst Rosy Bucio shared […]

Legends Slay on Stage
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

UCSB Arts & Lectures packed the Arlington Theatre on two consecutive nights with jazz legend Herbie Hancock and a very different performance with drag queen RuPaul, who was promoting his new memoir The House of Hidden Meanings. Before 14 Grammy-Award-winner Hancock’s energized show with his extraordinarily talented quintet, a dinner was thrown at Villa & […]

Local House Under Construction
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

Meghan Markle’s new Netflix series exhibiting her cookery and gardening skills is not being shot at the Sussex’s Riven Rock estate. But, by sheer coincidence, at the nearby eight-acre estate of old friend Tim and Sherri Cipolla, who split their time between our rarefied enclave and their home in Rancho Palos Verdes, an oceanside development […]

Glen Holden Remembered
By Richard Mineards   |   April 30, 2024

On a deeply personal note, I remember Glen Holden, one of three founding members of the Santa Barbara Polo Club, who has moved to more heavenly pastures at the age of 96. Born in Boise, Idaho, Glen grew up on a ranch outside of Portland, Oregon, from the age of six where he developed a […]

Cue the Yacht Rock
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

It was a sea of navy-blue blazers and Nantucket red pants when the Santa Barbara Yacht Club marked its 152nd opening day as the second oldest sailing mecca on the West Coast. Executive Chef Owen Hanavan laid on a heaping display of food – plank salmon, lamb chops, sausages, shrimp, eggs Benedict, eggs Florentine, and […]

A Dreamy Book
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Social gridlock reigned at Lee Stanton Antiques in the upper village when international British photographer Tim Street-Porter, an old friend, and artist and editor Annie Kelly promoted their new Rizzoli coffee table tome City of Dreams: Los Angeles Interiors. The 256-page book, which took two years to come together, features the designs of Frank Gehry […]

Return of the Doppelgänger
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Campbell Hall at UCSB was the place to be when the popular Arts & Lectures program staged two more major entertaining concerts. The first was the Danish String Quartet, joined by Finnish cellist Johannes Rostamo, for the eagerly anticipated capstone to their Doppelgänger Project, which I have watched over the past three years at Campbell […]

‘Little Women’ Takes the Stage
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Little Women, the American Theatre Guild’s musical version of Louisa May Alcott’s popular novel at the Granada, was an absolute delight. Based on Alcott’s life, the production follows the lives of sisters Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy March, each determined to lead their lives on their own terms. The timeless, captivating tale – set at […]

ZDF at Maison Mineards Montecito
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Another day at Maison Mineards Montecito, another TV crew! This one from Germany’s ZDF network with a five-person team, two of whom had flown in specially and one producer, Mo Davies, who jetted in from London and knew many of my royal expert friends from dealing with them over the decades. Los Angeles-based producer, Melanie […]

Welcoming President Walker
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Banker Henry Walker is the new president of the Santa Barbara Polo Club. Henry, who I have known for many years, is the patron of the FMB Too! polo team, a club trustee and member of the USPA since 1981. He joined the 117-year-old, Long Beach-based Farmers & Merchants Bank as a teller, and now […]

Remembering Lynda Millner
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

On a personal note, I remember Lynda Millner, the MJ’s longtime society columnist who retired in August 2022, after 27 years as a scribe for this illustrious organ. Her Seen Around Town column was a regular must-read chronicling the comings and goings of our rarefied enclave’s bustling social scene. Octogenarian Lynda leaves her long-lived husband, […]

Real New Neighbors
By Richard Mineards   |   April 23, 2024

Real Housewives of New Jersey alumna Dina Cantin is our rarefied enclave’s latest celebrity resident. She and her husband David Cantin have just snapped up a nearly 6,000 square foot five bedroom, five-and-a-half bathroom Tuscan-style villa for $16 million in Montecito. The tony twosome relocated to the Left Coast in 2015, settling in Malibu. Originally […]

A Laudable Lehman Play
By Richard Mineards   |   April 16, 2024

The Lehman Trilogy, a Tony Award winning three-man show by Stefano Massini, adapted by Ben Power and directed by Oanh Nguyen, at the Ensemble Theatre Company’s New Vic is not to be missed! The three-hour-long production, with two ten-minute intermissions, chronicles the rise and fall of the Lehman brothers, a 160-year journey of three immigrant […]

All Aboard!
By Richard Mineards   |   April 16, 2024

Mega philanthropists Roger and Sarah Chrisman hosted a fun fête for supporters and friends on the 110 ft. gaff rigged schooner Mystic Whaler, which is now run by the Central Coast Ocean Adventures Foundation based in Oxnard, as an education vessel for young people aged 10 to 18 years. The tony Montecito twosome bought the […]

The Bell of the Ball
By Richard Mineards   |   April 16, 2024

Our Eden by the Beach’s Community Arts Music Association ended its 105th International Series on a particularly high note when the U.K.’s 66-year-old Academy of St. Martin in the Fields – under the directorship of legendary Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell – played a sold-out concert at the Granada. The wonderfully entertaining show featured the […]

An Aperitif of Talk 
By Richard Mineards   |   April 16, 2024

Roger and Robin Himowitz opened the doors of their charming Provencal-style Montecito estate to host a sunset soirée honoring former U.S. Secretary of Labor Robert Reich before he spoke at UCSB’s Campbell Hall, part of the popular Arts & Lectures program. Reich, 77, who studied at Dartmouth College, Yale Law School, and won a Rhodes […]

Next Up… Hot Dog Eating Contest
By Richard Mineards   |   April 16, 2024

There are now more billionaires than ever, 2,781 in all, 141 more than last year and 26 more than the record set in 2021, according to the new 38th annual Forbes magazine Rich List. They’re also richer than ever, with $14.2 trillion in aggregate, up $2 trillion from 2023 and $1.1 trillion more than the […]