Kawaii Klaws
By Stella Haffner   |   September 12, 2023

In the Dear Montecito column, we have hosted writers, musicians, and filmmakers. This week, we are branching into a new medium with Lauryn Rousseau, a 2021 graduate of UCSB and the owner of Kawaii Klaws, a boutique nail art studio.  Q. How did you get interested in nail art? A. My cousin was really into […]

On Education: Annika Wagner
By Stella Haffner   |   August 15, 2023

Most high schools in California require around 60 hours of community service in order to graduate. What does it mean when a student does 40 times that amount? Eighteen-year-old Annika Wagner is a 2023 graduate of Dos Pueblos High School. During her junior high and high school years, she completed more than 2,000 hours of […]


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Edward “Ed” Carty
By Montecito Journal   |   August 15, 2023

Ed and his twin sister, Anne Carty, co-own and manage Carty & Carty Antiques in Montecito’s Upper Village, where their business serves as a resource for historical expertise. With the help of their mother’s early savviness, their establishment has become a hub of knowledge within the community. “We’ve been in Santa Barbara since 1865, came […]

Kristen d’Offay: Fashion That Is Functional and Fabulous
By Dalina Michaels   |   August 15, 2023

Kristen d’Offay grew up loving all things sparkly. She was raised in Houston with a grandmother who was a fashion designer and who loved sequins and dresses. But the idea to do something with fashion stayed locked up in a closet for years – while she worked! After years in corporate recruiting and raising three […]

Students for Reproductive Justice at UCSB
By Stella Haffner   |   July 25, 2023

This week I spoke to Cassidy Miller, one of the publicity coordinators of UCSB’s Students for Reproductive Justice committee, to learn more about how students promote health care advocacy and reproductive rights on campus.  Q. What does Students for Reproductive Justice do? A. Students for Reproductive Justice is a subcommittee of the UCSB Associated Students’ […]

Sharon Byrne to Leave Montecito Association 
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   July 18, 2023

In an announcement made last week, Montecito Association Executive Director Sharon Byrne will be stepping down from her position in order to assume leadership of the Women’s Liberation Front (WoLF), a national feminist organization. “It’s long been a dream of mine to advance the cause of women’s rights in the United States, and globally. I’ve […]

Teresa McWilliams
By Montecito Journal   |   July 11, 2023

Teresa McWilliams, born in Warsaw, Poland in 1937, relocated to Santa Barbara in September 1949 and has been a resident of Montecito for longer than many of us have been alive. Reflecting on the community’s transformation, McWilliams reminisces about a Montecito from a past era. “I’ve lived here for a long time, over 70 years, […]

  • Regan Williams: Shepherdess in Training
    By Stella Haffner   |   July 11, 2023

    Deep in the Ojai Valley hills sits Shepherdess Land & Livestock Co., along with their youngest recruit, Crane School alumna Regan Williams. Regan had a long-standing interest in farming and working with animals, recently picking up classes in holistic land management. But it wasn’t until Regan met her new boss Cole Bush, founder of Shepherdess […]

    Montecito’s Magic Man Passes On
    By James Buckley   |   June 13, 2023

    As MJ reported last week, Milt Larsen passed away on Sunday, May 28, after what had been a whirlwind week for the 92-year-old founder of Hollywood’s Magic Castle. The Sunday before he died, Milt and his wife, Arlene, attended a production of their longtime touring production, “It’s Magic!” in Cerritos, California. They watched the entire […]


    Sharon Byrne Awarded for Her Work with Hands Across Montecito and the MA
    By Eileen Read   |   June 13, 2023

    The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office awarded its Exceptional Civilian Award to Montecito Association Executive Director Sharon Byrne, citing her “extraordinary dedication to others and her collaborative work” with the Sheriff’s deputies, primarily in creating and managing the Hands Across Montecito project to address homelessness. The award described Ms. Byrne as “an accomplished neighborhood advocate […]

    Brooke Green New Head of Laguna Blanca Lower School
    By Joanne A Calitri   |   May 30, 2023

    Laguna Blanca School has announced that Brooke Green M.Ed. will be taking on the role of Head of the Lower School Montecito commencing July 1, 2023. Green is an alumnus of Laguna Blanca School 1997, has been the Lower School’s third grade instructor and their Learning Specialist grades two through four since 2013; and taught […]

    Sarah Powers: Podcaster
    By Dalina Michaels   |   May 23, 2023

    We could call her Podcaster Powers, but this Montecito Mama is close to being a native – and we are thrilled to introduce her to the MJ this week! Sarah (Wysel) Powers moved to Montecito with her family in 1986 when she was five years old. Her mornings were spent walking to school (Montecito Union) […]

    Jakob Hammer: Culinary School Insider
    By Stella Haffner   |   May 16, 2023

    One of my favorite types of articles are the industry-insider sort of stuff. What do experts know that we don’t know? Unfortunately, I couldn’t get an expert this week, so I asked my friend Jakob Hammer to join me instead. (Only kidding!) Please enjoy our light-hearted conversation about the behind-the-scenes of culinary school.  Q. You […]

    Society and Environment with Isa Johanson
    By Stella Haffner   |   May 2, 2023

    Twenty-year-old Isa Johanson is a current sophomore at UC Berkeley and an alumna of MUS, Santa Barbara Junior High, and Santa Barbara High School. From her first Earth Day and subsequent internship with Kathi King of Community Environmental Council to the 2018 mudslides, Isa describes the influence growing up in Montecito had on her current […]