Tag archives: locals

Jam and Honey: Buh Bye Big Apple. Manchester Capital’s Susan Sofronas has Arrived
By Jeff Wing   |   July 16, 2024

Newish Montecitan Susan Sofronas – recently arrived from the isle of Manhattan – is settling in nicely. She already adores our little woodland getaway, and as we sip java at sun-soaked Bree’osh on Coast Village, she charmingly parses her personal Tale of Two Cities with open delight.  “If you think of New York City – […]

Miki Dora Was Here
By Jeff Wing   |   June 18, 2024

Troubled Surf legend Miki Dora – the Dark Prince of Malibu – remains a cipher. His lifelong desire to live in the moment has made him a mythic figure in the surf pantheon; a stature that in his lifetime royally pissed him off. Pop culture shorthand has reduced Dora to a James Dean for the […]

Puzzlin’ Pete Produces ‘More Time’
By Steven Libowitz   |   May 28, 2024

Pete Muller didn’t set out to make a record in Memphis with an entirely new band when he visited producer/engineer Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell) on the advice of his manager. But the two hit it off, and when his previous producer Rob Mathes proved too busy with his Sting projects to get away, Muller committed […]

Natalie Martinez: Carpinteria High Senior Accepted into Eight-Year Medical Track at Brown
By Stella Haffner   |   April 23, 2024

“I didn’t always know I wanted to be a doctor. Actually, I hadn’t really considered medicine until my sister was diagnosed,” says 17-year-old Natalie Martinez. Natalie and her family are Carpinteria locals. On the weekend, they enjoy hiking the Franklin Trail and visiting family in Ventura. But their lives were upended when Natalie’s 13-year-old sister, […]

Women’s History Month 2024: Fashion Designer Catherine Gee
By Joanne A Calitri   |   March 26, 2024

When I read Editor-In-Chief Edward Kobina Enninful OBE’s final issue of British Vogue, which he dedicated to 40 women, I realized that it is fitting fashion designer Catherine Gee be featured in my Women’s History Month issue.  From 2016 – with her hand-painted designs for the prints on her signature silk line of women’s clothes […]

Dawson Fuss
By Stella Haffner   |   March 19, 2024

Dear Montecito! I miss you! I can’t wait to be home for Spring Break next week! I’m getting ready to finish my second year at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, and a lot has happened since the last time we spoke about my single “Oblivious,” which at the time was […]

Alice Tran: Tough as Nails
By Jeff Wing   |   March 12, 2024

In the war’s aftermath there were hundreds of thousands of scores to settle, and the new government wasted no time getting down to business. Former army officers, religious leaders, those who had worked for or with Americans or the old government; they were all asked to register with the new authorities, who would call them […]

Meet the Neighbor
By Richard Mineards   |   March 12, 2024

Montecito animal rights activist Gretchen Lieff didn’t have to look far when she moved into a new estate. The property, built in 1964 and designed by architect Carl Hillmann, was right next door to her former Arcady home! To mark the occasion Gretchen, owner of the La Lieff vineyard and Funk Zone tasting room, hosted […]

Richie Slater Crosses the Interior
By Jeff Wing   |   February 27, 2024

Richard Slater – Englishman, explorer, cultural spelunker, and during a particularly trying economic downturn in his native Liverpool, a bin-man – gathered his strength. New York City had been kind to him but was draining him of precious lucre. He’d spent his time well – hung out with a couple of Dutch tourists (scions of […]

The Gentleman from Liverpool Will be your Server This Evening
By Jeff Wing   |   February 20, 2024

LONDON (1982) – Richard Slater, anecdotist, adventurer, and future server at San Ysidro Ranch’s legendary Stonehouse Restaurant, hoisted his backpack in a gesture of fortitude. A wall of glass gave onto the gigantic, riveted machine that would presently loft him out of Heathrow Airport and deposit him at JFK in New York City. Slater stared […]

Dear Montecito: Joan Curran
By Stella Haffner   |   February 20, 2024

“I hadn’t imagined myself working in the nonprofit sector when I started college,” says Joan Curran. Joan was a freshman at the University of San Francisco when she began her federal work study and – as she would later realize – began her career. Joan joined the team at a San Francisco–based nonprofit called Career […]

Super Bowl Party Pile Up
By Richard Mineards   |   February 20, 2024

Sports fans galore descended on the George Washington Smith Montecito estate of technology executive Howard Cannon, just a tiara’s toss from the home of singer Katy Perry and her British actor fiancé Orlando Bloom, for Cannon’s popular seventh annual Super Bowl party. With commercial time during the CBS broadcast of the matchup between the Kansas […]

Dear Montecito: Kristine Carrillo 
By Stella Haffner   |   February 6, 2024

Who doesn’t love a full circle moment? Today we have yet another wonderful featuree who is an alumna of the Mission Scholars program. Inspired by her time in the program and her upbringing here in Santa Barbara, Kristine Carrillo is a current senior at Brown University where she studies International and Public Affairs and Education […]

Dear Montecito: Annika Wagner
By Stella Haffner   |   January 23, 2024

New schedule, new workload, new classes and more. Moving from the end of high school to the beginning of freshman year is one of the biggest transitions a student will experience, even when they are as college-ready as Annika Wagner. Last year Annika graduated from Dos Pueblos High School with a 4.85 GPA, 34 college […]

Montecito’s Dirt Bike Days
By Jeff Wing   |   January 23, 2024

Montecito! (excuse me) While our fairly liquid little village has never been known as the “Home of the Mink Stole,” neither has it ever sported the tagline “Central Coast Epicenter of Tweens Helling around on BMX Bikes.” That branding would likely have been discouraged by the Montecito Association. The descriptor, though, would not have been […]

Isabela Contreras
By Stella Haffner   |   January 9, 2024

Today’s topic: future physicians and an enviable education. Santa Barbara’s tourists dream about moving here for the great food, beaches, and shops. But as locals we know that one of the best things about living in Santa Barbara is the education available to our children. From world-class extracurriculars at our elementary schools to a country-topping […]

Osiel Ocampo The Path to Being Half Full
By Stella Haffner   |   December 19, 2023

December is a festive season. A month of family. A month of moderate weight gain. But for many featurees of the Dear Montecito column, December is first and foremost the end of the semester.  To reflect on the end of term, we are reading a piece by Osiel Ocampo. Osiel was born and raised in […]

Kate Kramer: Interior Designer
By Dalina Michaels   |   December 19, 2023

Montecito native Kate Kramer has an eye for design – whether it is for a home or an afternoon snack:  “It’s funny, my career has taken me all over, but one of my most interesting jobs was working at a design firm as a package designer. One of our clients was Frito-Lay, so I literally […]

Avery Brundage: Montecito’s Fallen King
By Anthony Wall   |   December 5, 2023

Few have had a grander international presence while living in Montecito than a wealthy Chicago businessman named Avery Brundage. His story is a quintessentially American one – a rags-to-riches, Horatio Alger tale, though not without its twists. Brundage grew up in the Teddy Roosevelt era of bold, rugged achievers. Born to modest circumstances in Detroit […]

Dawson Fuss: Part 2: What am I going to do with my life? And what am I going to do for dinner?
By Stella Haffner   |   November 21, 2023

Growing up, moving out, heartache, and more. To quote singer-songwriter Dawson Fuss in his 2023 release: “When will these growing pains give my bones a break?” We last spoke to Dawson in April of 2021 about his musical beginnings. Two years later, the Teen Star and Cate School alum is now a sophomore at the […]