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.

In Passing: Beverley Jackson
By Richard Mineards   |   August 13, 2020

Beverley Jackson, who died of natural causes last week just short of her 92nd birthday, was one helluva gal! The society doyenne, who moved to our rarefied enclave in 1963 after a privileged upbringing in Beverly Hills and Pasadena, was a fellow student at Westlake School for Girls with Shirley Temple. For 22 years Beverley […]

Remembering Stuart
By Richard Mineards   |   April 9, 2020

My trusty shutterbug Priscilla recalls meeting the late cowboy actor Stuart Whitman, who died in at his Montecito home last month aged 92. It was in the early ‘70s when she was an extra in Laurence Harvey’s last movie Welcome to Arrow Beach, which was filmed at the vacant Casa Dorinda, then known as the […]

Ellen at Home
By Richard Mineards   |   April 9, 2020

Montecito’s Ellen DeGeneres is set to bring back her hit eponymous TV talk show remotely after suspending production at her Warner Bros. Burbank studio because of the coronavirus. Ellen, 62, reveals she has been filming throughout her entire quarantine, conducting a series of A-list interviews for her at-home edition, including John Legend, Jennifer Lopez, and […]

Showing Gratitude
By Richard Mineards   |   April 9, 2020

It was the perfect blend when global medical device manufacturer Karl Storz Imaging president Miles Hartfeld expressed his gratitude to employees when they left work the other day at the Goleta offices. The company makes critically needed endoscopic medical equipment, including bronchoscopes used on the front lines in the battle against COVID-19. Although Governor Gavin […]

Social Distance Serenades
By Richard Mineards   |   April 9, 2020

Santa Barbara classical guitarist Chris Fossek is looking to the Middle Ages, when balladeers roamed the land, to soothe our furrowed brows during these most trying of times. Chris, who has performed at the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and Rome’s Olympic Stadium, has launched a charming new project, Open Window Serenades. “As long […]

Rest in Peace, Kenny
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

On a personal note, I mark the passing of singer Kenny Rogers at his home in Georgia at the age of 81. Rogers, who was elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame, used to entertain at a number of charity events in New York where I last saw him at the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation […]

Makes No Cents
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

Former Montecito funnyman John Cleese is not exactly raking in the big bucks. John, who rose to fame as a cast member with Monty Python’s Flying Circus and Fawlty Towers, has revealed a paltry royalty payment he received for narrating the film Winnie the Pooh, stating that one check totaled all of 20 cents. John, […]

Horsing Around
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

The Santa Barbara Polo Club is delaying the start of its 109th season, which was scheduled to kick off on May 1, because of the coronavirus. Instead, the hotly anticipated initial equestrian event, the Folded Hills Pope Challenge, has been rescheduled for May 15, with the 12-goal schedule continuing through July 5. “The club is […]

Riskin it All
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

Award-winning writer and producer Vicki Riskin, who wrote a delightful book about her parents, Oscar winning screenwriter Robert Riskin and King Kong actress Fay Wray, has been nominated for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize for best biography, 2019. The awards, which were scheduled to be announced later this month, have now been postponed until […]

Pandemic Pentameter
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

The elderly residents of Casa Dorinda, currently under lockdown because of the coronavirus, are waxing poetic! Longtime resident Linda Beuret says residents are watching movies and participating in exercise classes on Casa TV, while food is delivered to the doors of cottages and rooms. “Keeping six feet from anyone you pass is absolutely mandatory,” says […]

Miramar on the Move
By Richard Mineards   |   April 2, 2020

Billionaire L.A. real estate developer Rick Caruso is also doing his considerable best during this pandemic. Despite having now closed the Rosewood Miramar temporarily, he is still paying staff who work at the 124-room, 27-suite hostelry, which opened a year ago. In a further effort to support our rarefied enclave and thank the heroic first […]

Rest in Peace
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

On a personal note, I mark the passing of movie cowboy Stuart Whitman, who has died at his Montecito home aged 92 after complications from skin cancer. A charming man, who I would speak to often at Pierre Lafond, Stuart was best known for co-starring with John Wayne in the 1961 movie The Comancheros. Stuart, […]

Remembering Lyle
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

My condolences to actress-comedienne Carol Burnett, 86. Lyle Waggoner, who co-starred in her popular eponymous TV series from 1967 to 1974, and was a fixture on Wonder Woman with Lynda Carter from 1975 to 1979, has died age the age of 84. “He was funny, kind, and multi-talented,” says the longtime Montecito resident. “But even […]

Selling New York
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

Santa Barbara resident and horse racing enthusiast Barry Schwartz, the co-founder of Calvin Klein Inc., is selling his sprawling equestrian estate in New York’s Westchester Country for $100 million. Spanning around 740 acres, the property is among the largest privately held estates in the county, according to Christie’s International Real Estate. Known as Stonewall Farm […]

Seas the Day
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

Santa Barbara Maritime Museum is riding the crest of a wave having been designated Nonprofit of the Year. The harborside museum, which has received the accolade from the Chamber of the Santa Barbara Region, opened 20 years ago with the mission of interpreting the colorful maritime history of the Santa Barbara Channel. It was founded […]

When it Rains, it Pours
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

As if the coronavirus restrictions weren’t enough, Milt and Arlene Larsen, owners of the Magic Castle opposite the Andree Clark Bird Refuge, have had their computers hacked. “It really was an absolute mess,” says Arlene. “Whoever did it fixed it so we could not send out letters to let everyone know.” The dynamic duo have […]

Viral Vibrato
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

Montecito arborist and amateur opera composer Gene Tyburn is on a high note! A video of his opera Macbeth on YouTube has now achieved more than one million views. “It was all filmed in just one take by a friend,” says an elated Gene, owner of TLC Tree Services for more than 45 years, who […]

Headed to Hollywood
By Richard Mineards   |   March 26, 2020

San Marcos High sophomore and Santa Barbara Teen Star Sofia Schuster really is a golden girl! The 16-year-old singer traveled down to Los Angeles to an audition for the latest series of the popular ABC TV series American Idol in front of local warbler Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan, and received the golden […]

Wuu-ing the Audience
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

Despite coronavirus concerns, there were few cancellations when Elliot Wuu, winner of the Music Academy of the West’s solo piano competition, performed at Hahn Hall. The 20-year-old, an undergraduate of New York’s Juilliard School showing great finesse, won the recital and a future one at the Chicago Cultural Center on April 1, based on his […]

Cancellations Abound
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

I was interviewed at Maison Mineards Montecito by KEYT-TV reporter Anikka Abbott on the impact of the coronavirus on cultural and entertainment events in our Eden by the Beach. At the time of the taping most social events were still in place with no cancellations, but after California Governor Gavin Newsom banned gatherings of more […]

Riveting Recital
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

Ray Winn and Peter Kavoian opened the doors of their magnificent Birnam Wood home for a Musicale featuring Italian pianist Jacopo Giacopuzzi on the dynamic duo’s Bosendorfer grand piano, one of only seven of its type in the world. The Music Academy of the West fundraiser, catered by Elena Wagner, featured Verona native Jacopo, who studied […]

Music City Convention
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

Josiah Hamilton, 45, great-great nephew of the late civic leader Pearl Chase and a co-founder of the Santa Barbara Bucket Brigade, just opened the Berkshire Hathaway National Sales Convention in Nashville, Tennessee, with more than 6,500 agents in attendance. Josiah, who grew up dividing his time between Montecito and London, has been working as an […]

Casablanca Postponed
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

One of the first casualties of the coronavirus shutdown locally was Marymount School’s annual fundraiser at the Montecito Club which had 200 guests and was expected to gross $400,000 for scholarships and other operating costs. But even though the number was below Gov. Gavin Newsom‘s edict of no more than 250 people at a gathering, […]

Change of Plans
By Richard Mineards   |   March 19, 2020

Montecito animal activist Gretchen Lieff and fiancé Miles Hartfeld had their romantic vacation to the Maldives and India cut short after President Donald Trump‘s announcement about new travel measures fighting the spread of the coronavirus. “We found ourselves in the middle of the Indian Ocean on an island 200 miles north of the Equator,” says […]

SBYC Season Sets Sail
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

It was a sea of navy blue blazers and Nantucket red pants when the Santa Barbara Yacht Club marked its 148th opening day as the second oldest sailing mecca on the West Coast. Executive chef Michael Blackwell laid on a culinary display of food, accompanied by gallons of mimosas, that would have made Belshazzar green […]

It’s Magic
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

You can’t get much of a greater span in approaches to magic than the acts appearing on It’s Magic!, whose 63rd edition, which annually showcases different types of magic – from subtle sleight of hand to big-stage illusions, performs two shows at the Lobero on Saturday, March 14. On the one hand, we’ll see Michael […]

Magical Meetup
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

It was a nice coincidence when former veteran KEYT-TV weatherman Alan Rose, who now works at KOAA-TV in Pueblo, Colorado, took some time off from his vacation to Palm Springs to visit Disneyland. The complex’s California Adventure was hosting its annual food and wine festival, drawing media from throughout the country, including KEYT-TV morning anchor […]

Punk Rock Patti
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

Bruce Heavin and Lynda Weinman opened the doors of their charming Padaro Lane beach house for a concert by veteran rocker Patti Smith, 73, which raised $100,000 for CADA – The Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse – which hosts its 34th annual Amethyst Ball “Motown at the Miramar” on March 27. The bustling beachside […]

Please Mr. Postino
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

Opera Santa Barbara was on a high note when it performed Mexican composer Daniel Catan‘s Il Postino at the Lobero. The Spanish language production, based on the charming 1994 film, was conducted by maestro Kostis Protopapas and directed by Crystal Manich, who made her debut with the company three years ago with The Cunning Little […]

Little Women Lunch
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

It may have been written in 1868, but Louisa May Alcott’s Civil War classic Little Women continues to stand the test of time, with the first silent film of the work in 1917, George Cukor’s 1933 film with Katharine Hepburn, and last year’s Oscar nominated Greta Gerwig version with Meryl Streep, the seventh one made. […]

Brilliant Bill
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

American British-based writer Bill Bryson, 68, was in fine humorous form at the Granada, when he spoke about his extensive work as part of the UCSB Arts & Lectures program. Bryson, who first visited the U.K. in 1973 as part of a European tour, decided to stay after landing a job at a psychiatric hospital […]

CAMA Centennial
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2020

One hundred years to the very day the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Venezuelan maestro Gustavo Dudamel performed in a special CAMA – Community Arts Music Association – sold-out concert at the Granada. Both CAMA and the orchestra are celebrating centenaries this year, with the Big Orange musicians having made its Santa Barbara debut at the […]

What a Deal
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

Longtime Montecito resident Dick Wolf, the creator of Law & Order and the multi-TV show Chicago franchise for NBC, has become the network’s $1 billion man. Wolf, 73, has signed a new five-year deal to stay with NBCUniversal, his studio home for the past 36 years, which includes three-year renewals for Law & Order: Special […]

New Resident
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

Sleepless in Seattle star Meg Ryan, 58, is the latest celebrity to call our rarefied enclave home, joining fellow actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Natalie Portman. Ryan, who also appeared in Top Gun, When Harry Met Sally, and Courage Under Fire, has purchased a 4,268 sq. ft. three-bedroom, three and a half bathroom home on one […]

Wolf Pack
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

Five of the city’s major entertainment organizations combined forces at the Granada to present a special benefit performance of Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, an enchanting tale of adventure and bravery that transfixed the sold-out young audience. Maestro Nir Kabaretti led the Santa Barbara Youth Symphony, with a narration by English UCSB professor Simon […]

Amaizing Fare
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

The Luna-tics were out in force when prolific restaurateur Carlos Luna opened his latest Mexican eatery, Flor de Maiz, on Cabrillo Boulevard, just across from Stearns Wharf. The 140-seat eatery, wedged nicely between the Bluewater Grill and the FisHouse, is named after the flower xochimoyahuatl, when the tribes of pre-Hispanic Mexico venerated corn as the […]

The B’s Knees
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

It was a very B-list performance when classical guitarist Miloš, who hails from Montenegro, made his debut at the Music Academy of the West’s Hahn Hall along with a quintet from the British 12 ensemble, playing works by Bach, Boccherini and the Beatles. The highly entertaining UCSB Arts & Lectures show, part of the Up […]

Party Animals
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

South African jungle tracker Boyd Varty was the mane attraction when Bobby and Susan Shand opened the doors of their Montecito aerie for a sunset soiree for AHA!, the Santa Barbara non-profit that inspires youth to be safe, seen and celebrated. The bash, described as “a friend raiser,” also focused attention on the 21st anniversary […]

TBCF Little Heroes Breakfast
By Richard Mineards   |   March 5, 2020

It was an early start when the Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation hosted its 6th annual Little Heroes breakfast for 400 guests at the Hilton, which raised more than $60,000 for the popular charity. The boffo bash, co-chaired by Heather Ayer, Matt Fish, and Brittany Dobson, featured the eccentric Patch Adams, better known as a medical […]

New CEO
By Richard Mineards   |   February 27, 2020

Canadian Barbara Robertson, who has held a succession of finance, operations and administrative positions with several area nonprofit organizations, has been named president and CEO of the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara. Robertson studied business economics at the University of British Columbia and accounting at the British Columbia Institute of Technology before working as a […]