February 4, 2023
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CommUnify, Cottage, NAACP team up for a healthy Black Friday

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Street Smarts

The NAACP Santa Maria-Lompoc, several community organizations and the California Department of Public Health are giving the traditional start of holiday shopping a new look by hosting a Black Health Friday Fair.

The health fair features family activities, food, COVID-19 vaccines and updated boosters for those 5 years and older, according to a release from Kim Hunter and Lagrant Communications. Partners include CommUnify, First 5 Santa Barbara County, Gateway Educational Services, Cottage Health and others. The first 50 households to get vaccinated or boosted will receive a $50 Starbucks gift card.

The Black Health Friday Fair is set for the Dick DeWees Community Center on Ocean Avenue in Lompoc from 9 am to 4 p.m. on Nov. 25.

SLO COMMUNITY GRANTS

The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo has announced nearly $500,000 in grants to 40 nonprofit organizations serving arts, human services, the environment, seniors and people with disabilities.  “The goal of the General Grants Program has always been to provide funding for agencies that directly address community needs,” said Heidi McPherson, CEO of The Community Foundation. Awards averaged more than $16,000 per organization.

TO LONDON, FROM SANTA BARBARA

Music Academy of the West will send 31 fellows to London in November as part of its 75th anniversary programming. The milestone year celebrations began with three performances of the London Symphony Orchestra in Santa Barbara in March. The 31 Keston Music Academy exchange winners from 2019-2022 will train and perform with London Symphony Orchestra Principal Guest Conductor Gianandrea Noseda. 

MARIAN CLINIC TURNS 25

Dignity Health’s Pacific Central Coast Health Centers is celebrating the 25-year anniversary of Marian Community Clinic in Santa Maria with a new facility that offers updated equipment, lab services and continues a tradition of health care access for all. Kudos to Scott Robertson, M.D., president and CEO of Pacific Central Coast Health Centers.

LIGHT UP A LIFE

Hospice of Santa Barbara is holding its annual Light Up a Life remembrance program with a series of events from Dec. 4-10 in locations from Carpinteria to Goleta.  Emcees include Steve Jacobsen, Marybeth Carty and Reverend Julia Hamilton along with poetry and music. The program kicks off at the Lobero Theatre on Dec. 4 at 6 p.m.

NEW LOOK FOR VISIT MORRO BAY

Visit Morro Bay has launched a new brand that includes a logo update and a fresh, saltier take on visiting the Central Coast. The idea is to invoke the “full flavor of an authentic California fishing village,” according to a Michael Wambolt, Executive Director of Visit Morro Bay. 

SAVE A SEAT BEFORE THANKSGIVING 

The Amtrak® Pacific Surfliner® will shift to advanced reservations for travel from Nov. 23-28 during an expected busy Thanksgiving season. Additional train cars and shuttles will increase the number of seats.  Monthly Metrolink and COASTER passes will not be accepted on these dates. For more info check out Amtrak.com or 1-800-USA-RAIL.

VC SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS OPEN

Ventura County Community Foundation is offering more than 470 scholarship opportunities totaling over $1.4 million in awards. The deadline to apply is January 20, 2023 but application by Dec. 8 gets a staff review of applications.

TRANSFORMATION AWARD GIVEN

Southern California Gas Co. has been honored with the top “Business Transformation Award” at the 2022 Responsible Business Awards, hosted by Reuters Events. It was among some 700 companies considered for their sustainability goals and potential impact.

HOLIDAY CRUISING SCHEDULES

 Island Packers Cruisers, the official boat concessionaire to the Channel Islands National Park and a former Spirit of Small Business winner, rolled out its holiday schedule with daily departures to the Channel Islands from Ventura Harbor Village. It will be offering seasonal cruises for family and friends, as well as group functions. 

SANTA TO THE SEA 

After a year away, the 14th annual Santa to the Sea race will be held on Sunday, December 12.  The race starts at 7: 30 a.m. and will include a half marathon. New this year is a quarter marathon, 5K, Kids 1K and a Diaper Dash. The half marathon starts at the world’s largest Santa statue along Highway 101, winds the route through the City of Oxnard and finishes at Channel Islands Harbor.
FIRST BITE OF REVIVED SB TAVERN

In Los Olivos, Mattei’s Tavern’s food and beverage team met up for a live panel discussion with Todd Schulkin, host of Heritage Radio Network’s Inside Julia’s Kitchen and Executive Director of The Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts on Nov. 13.  The California ranch-inspired restaurant spotlights locally sourced dishes.

HAPPY 20, SPIRIT OF SANTA PAULA

Happy 20th anniversary to the Spirit of Santa Paula, an inspired grass roots group founded by Kay Wilson-Bolton and John and Susan Kulwiec. The organization now provides meals and shelter for the city’s homeless population.

FINAL SCENES….

HAPPY 25th: The Lompoc Valley chamber celebrates Garcia Dance Studio’s 25th Anniversary in the Lompoc Valley on Dec. 8 at 5 p.m. at 1006 North H St.

DEDICATED DOJO:  Santa Barbara Dojo, a family-owned martial arts academy continues its tradition of coordinating an adopt-a-family  program for Thanksgiving with its “Thanksgiving Basket Brigade.”

PLEIN AIR MASTER: Flying Goat Cellars in Lompoc extends the show by plein air painter Kelly Rangel from northern Santa Barbara County into 2023. Her subjects include the Sta. Rita Hills wine country.

FOXWORTHY NOTE: Allan Hancock College’s Ann Foxworthy Gallery features the work of artist Rafael Perea de la Cabada. The exhibit, titled “Tiempo sin Palabras/Time without Words,” features a wide range of media.

CONDOLENCES: To the friends and family of Laurence L. Shields, a 50-year member of the Thomas Aquinas College teaching faculty who died suddenly, from a heart attack earlier this month.