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NORTHERN SANTA BARBARA COUNTY’S NEWS AND ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY > JUNE 6 - JUNE 13, 2024 > VOL. 25 NO. 15 > WWW.SANTAMARIASUN.COM NEWS ARTS EATS County talks bed tax increase [4] Ramen in Solvang [25] A Lompoc exhibit about clowns [22] AT THE MOVIES The Idea of You is weird but good [24] VISIT US ONLINE SIGN UP for E-Newsletter(s) LIKE US on Facebook FOLLOW US on Instagram FOLLOW US on Twitter Out and about Our Pride issue highlights a social group for older members of the LGBTQ-plus community [6] and the need for the Pride in Mental Health Act [8]

With this year’s annual Pride issue, we’re taking a little time to focus on support systems for the LGBTQ-plus community—what exists and what needs to exist.

Staff Writer Taylor O’Connor talks to the Pacific Pride Foundation about a program it’s expanding into North County intended specifically to provide a sense of community that may be lacking for those who are a little older. The Lavender Elders program aims to be a space for connection and social opportunities for LGBTQ-plus individuals who may not have received it in their youth [6] New Times Staff Writer Bulbul Rajagopal from the Sun’s sister paper looks at the Pride in Mental Health Act, which was introduced in the U.S. Senate by California Sen. Laphonza Butler, and the service gaps it could help bridge [8].

This week, you can also read about Santa Barbara County’s discussion about increasing transient occupancy tax [4]; a Lompoc artist who isn’t clowning around [22]; and five years of ramen in Solvang [25]

Lanham editor JUNE 6 - JUNE 13, 2024 VOL. 25 NO. 15 GLITTER FOR ALL: The Pacific Pride Foundation is expanding its Lavender Elders program into North County to give elder LGBTQ-plus folks more access to a supportive community. NEWS News Briefs ............................................................................... 4 Political Watch 4 Spotlight...................................................................................... 9 OPINION Commentary 10 Letters ........................................................................................ 10 Web Poll 10 Modern World ........................................................................ 10 Canary 12 EVENTS CALENDAR Hot Stuff .................................................................................... 14 ARTS Arts Briefs ............................................................................... 22 MOVIES Reviews 24 CLASSIFIEDS, HOME, AND REAL ESTATE 27 Cover photo courtesy of Pacific Pride Foundation > Cover design by Alex Zuniga I nformative, accurate, and independent journalism takes time and costs money. Help us keep our community aware and connected by donating today. HELP SUPPORT OUR MISSION SINCE2000 SANTAMARIA.ABBEYCARPET.COM 2051 S. BROADWAY • SANTA MARIA WESTERN VILLAGE SHOPPING CENTER 805-347-1121 LIC. 668152 DreamHomeYOUR AWAITS of Santa Maria Abbey Ca r pet Call or visit your local financial advisor today Compare our CD rates Bank-issued, FDIC-insured % APY* % APY* % APY* > | Member SIPC FDI-1867N-A AECSPAD *Annual Percentage Yield (APY) effective 06/03/24. CDs offered by Edward Jones are bank-issued and FDIC-insured up to $250,000 (principal and interest accrued but not yet paid) per depositor, per insured depository institution, for each account ownership category. Please visit or contact your financial advisor for additional information. Subject to availability and price change. CD values are subject to interest rate risk such that when interest rates rise, the prices of CDs can decrease. If CDs are sold prior to maturity, the investor can lose principal value. FDIC insurance does not cover losses in market value. Early withdrawal may not be permitted. Yields quoted are net of all commissions. CDs require the distribution of interest and do not allow interest to compound. CDs offered through Edward Jones are issued by banks and thrifts nationwide. All CDs sold by Edward Jones are registered with the Depository Trust Corp. (DTC). 5.40 5.40 5.40 3-Month 9-Month 1-Year Troy Prober Financial Advisor The Historic Santa Maria Inn 801 S Broadway Suite 7 Santa Maria, CA 93454 805-925-1304 What’s Your Take? Enter your choice online at: We know you’ve got an opinion. Everybody’s got one! This week’s online poll 6/8–6/13 How are you celebrating Pride Month this year? m I’ve went to SLO Pride and will be at Santa Maria Pride on June 9! m I donate to local LGBTQ-plus nonprofits. m I’ll try a new program and/or volunteer with an LGBTQ-plus nonprofit. m I’m traveling out of town to see a Pride festival. 2 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •

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• U.S. Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-Santa Barbara) and the Biden administration announced new funding for two Central Coast school districts to support their purchase of 35 zero- and low-emission school buses for students, according to a May 29 statement from Carbajal’s office. Ventura Unified School District and Santa Barbara Unified School District are receiving $7 million total—with $5 million to Santa Barbara Unified and $2 million to Ventura Unified—in rebates through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ’s Clean School Bus Program, which was created and funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. “The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is helping cut carbon pollution through support for zero-emission and low-emission alternatives across our society— from transportation to schools,” Carbajal said in the statement. “I’m proud to see the landmark law I helped write and pass delivering investments to the Central Coast that will help replace school buses in our districts and ensure we are continuing to take a holistic approach to combating the climate crisis.” The rebates will help California accelerate the transition to zero-emission vehicles and replace older, dieselfueled buses—which have been linked to asthma and other conditions that harm the health of students and surrounding communities. To date, the office of Rep. Carbajal has tracked more than $800 million in funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to support transit and highway improvements, rail and water infrastructure upgrades, and expansion of highspeed internet connectivity.

• U.S. Sen. Alex Padilla (D-California) and several of his colleagues joined the Bureau of Reclamation to announce $159 million in transformational investments for three large-scale water recycling projects in Southern California, according to a May 28 statement from Padilla’s office. Leadership from the three recipients of this Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding—Metropolitan Water District, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), and the city of Ventura—joined the lawmakers and administration officials for the announcement. The funding was delivered by a new federal program Padilla secured in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to help invest in large-scale water recycling programs and innovative water reuse projects that strengthen drought resilience across the West. Through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Bureau of Reclamation is investing a total of $8.3 billion over five years for water infrastructure projects, including rural water, water storage, conservation and conveyance, naturebased solutions, dam safety, water purification and reuse, and desalination. “We know that it’s only a matter of time until the next devastating drought, which is why we need every tool at our disposal to protect our region’s precious water supplies,” Padilla said in the statement. “Today’s announcement, made possible by Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments in large-scale water recycling projects, will help us build a more reliable, more resilient water supply in Southern California.”

• Gov. Gavin Newsom and leaders representing technology, government, academia, and labor, along with civic organizations, recently gathered at the Joint California Summit on Generative AI to collaborate on and examine the technology, according to a May 29 statement from Newsom’s office. The summit was developed and hosted by the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development; the California Government Operations Agency; the UC Berkeley College of Computing, Data Science, and Society; and the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence. Newsom directed his agencies to pursue a partnership with the higher education institutions as part of his executive order on GenAI last year. The state is home to 35 of the world’s 50 leading AI companies, high-impact research and education institutions, and a quarter of the technology’s patents and conference papers, according to the governor’s office. “California is the globe’s artificial intelligence leader, and today’s summit continues to showcase the state’s commitment to innovation,” Newsom said in the statement. “GenAI is here and developing quickly—our innovation hubs and state leaders are quickly evolving to use it equitably and responsibly so it benefits all Californians.” m

TWO PERCENT: Hotels, motels and short-term rentals in the unincorporated parts of Santa Barbara County, like the Skyview Los Alamos hotel, may see an increase in transient occupancy tax if voters approve the 2 percent increase during the November 2024 general election.

Board of Supervisors approve Transient Occupancy Tax increase ballot measure

Despite some residents’ concerns about increased taxes, impacts to the tourism industry, and multiple tax measures going before voters, the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 (with 4th District Supervisor Bob Nelson Dissenting) to put a Transient Occupancy Tax increase on the November 2024 general election ballot.

“I really want to continue to invest in this community to make it the place people are drawn to, and unfortunately that does cost money,” 5th District Supervisor Steve Lavagnino said. “I apologize for the timing, but we are on a path where sales tax would provide the necessary funding.”

Transient occupancy tax (TOT) is a tax generated by visitors who pay the rate when staying at hotels, motels, or short-term rental properties for 30 days or less within the unincorporated areas of the county—which have 24 hotels and 520 short-term rentals, according to the staff report. Voters approved the county’s current 12 percent TOT during the November 2016 general election—a 2 percent increase from the previous 10 percent rate, which had been held since 1990.

Now the county is proposing an additional 2 percent increase (14 percent)—which would bring Santa Barbara County to the same rates as Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Francisco—in order to help the county generate more discretionary revenue, according to the staff report. Solvang and Buellton will also be proposing a 2 percent TOT increase to bring their rates to 14 percent, and Carpinteria is proposing an increase to bring its TOT to 15 percent.

After the board’s approval, staff will come back with ballot language on July 9.

While the TOT only applies to hotels in the unincorporated areas, the measure will need a simple majority of all county voters, according to the staff report.

“Because it’s on a TOT, it’s general, discretionary revenue, it could be spent anywhere in the county, not just the unincorporated area,” CEO Mona Miyasato told the supervisors.

During the April budget workshops, staff reported that the county is facing budget revenue growth outpaced by increased salaries, employee

Solvang’s new utility ordinance enforces against delinquent accounts

Looking to crack down on tenants who leave unpaid water bills behind after unceremoniously vacating their rentals, the city of Solvang is adjusting some of its utility protocols.

In February, the Solvang City Council directed staff to research new ways to approach the enforcement of delinquent water and sewer utility accounts. Staff returned with a proposal at the City Council’s May 28 meeting.

At any given time, there are a handful of residential accounts that are delinquent on their city-owned utility bills, according to the staff report. Most of these accounts carry a balance “in the hundreds of dollars, but current staff is aware of at least one account with a much higher balance.”

To ease Solvang’s difficulty in recovering delinquent bills, City Attorney Chelsea O’Sullivan and staff proposed that the city require all residential accounts going forward be in the property owner’s name rather than the tenant’s name.

benefits, and internal services along with continued storm recovery costs; new legislative changes for public safety, health, and behavioral health services; and ongoing litigation, according to the staff report. The 2 percent increase to TOT presents an estimated $2.9 million increase in revenue, totaling $20.6 million.

While the additional funds would help, Supervisor Nelson voted against adding the measure because he believes that there are other avenues the county could go down in order to generate revenue, he said.

“Looking at … all of the services we have to offer and limited discretionary funds the county has, it is daunting, and I don’t disagree that there’s a problem where there are more needs and wants than there are resources, I just disagree with the solution,” Nelson said. “More taxes doesn’t necessarily mean more revenue.”

According to a letter signed by 109 regional business leaders, this increase would make the county’s TOT the most expensive on the Central Coast, with Ventura County at 8 percent, SLO County at 9 percent, and Monterey County at 10.5 percent, putting Santa Barbara County at a competitive disadvantage.

“I know there’s some that think 2 percent is not that bad, … but the message I’ve gotten from the business community is they are concerned, especially as the economy has gotten a little weaker,” Nelson added. “The tourism industry, hotels that struggle to pay employees a living wage—at some point the cost, and total costs, there’s only so much the consumer can tolerate.”

Nelson said he wanted to see the county reform its planning and approval process to move projects more efficiently and quickly through the county’s system—including projects that have the potential to create TOT like the agricultural enterprise ordinance, the recreation master plan, and the Biltmore Hotel renovation project in Montecito.

Second District Supervisor Laura Capps said that she was also invested in seeing these projects come to fruition, but the additional funding was needed to continue momentum on programs that address other county issues like homelessness and maintaining county employee salaries and services.

“We’re good this year, but we are looking at a really tough outlook,” she said. “It’s a challenge to balance priorities, to keep momentum on homelessness and cleaning things up and also doing right by the businesses.”

“The city is better able to keep track of and enforce against property owners and make sure that they’re paying the bills and fine them if they don’t rather than tenants—who we’ve noticed, when they don’t pay the bill, often leave town,” O’Sullivan said at the May 28 meeting, “and then the city’s stuck [with the bill].”

O’Sullivan explained that staff doesn’t often have the ability to locate a delinquent account holder after they’re no longer a tenant at the property with unpaid water bills, which makes it difficult to “continue to go after them or pursue them in small claims court.”

“The tenant’s still going to pay the utility, but it will just be a matter … decided through their lease terms rather than the tenant having the utility account with the city in their name,” O’Sullivan said. “You could still get the water shut off if the owner’s not paying.”

O’Sullivan clarified that the strict noticing procedures required to turn a property’s water off would remain consistent with state law regardless of whether staff’s policy revisions get approved.

Councilmember Elizabeth Orona expressed one concern shortly before the proposal was adopted unanimously on a first reading.

“Well, hopefully, landlords aren’t making profit on the transfer of the water costs,” Elizabeth Orona said. “It should be net zero—the same rent or the same outflow for a combined rent and water cost.”

O’Sullivan said that staff added “a little bit of flexibility” in the ordinance, which allows the property owner to designate someone “such as a tenant or whoever they want to get the bill in the mail.”

“So, it [the bill] could still be sent to the tenant, but ultimately, legally, the account is in the owner’s name,” O’Sullivan explained. “So, they’re responsible.”

“I have no problem with a tenant and a landlord making whatever arrangements they want to make,” said Councilmember Robert Clarke.

—Caleb Wiseblood

Guadalupe increases cannabis licensing renewal, inspection fees

Like many other jurisdictions, Guadalupe is working out kinks within its cannabis ordinance. The Guadalupe City Council unanimously voted during its May 28 meeting to increase prelicense, inspection, and annual regulatory fees for commercial cannabis businesses, and pushed staff to enforce a $3,000 community benefit fee

June 6 - June 13, 2024 News
FILE PHOTO BY JAYSON MELLOM POLITICAL WATCH ➤ Connection, socialization [6] ➤ Overdue breakthrough [8] Act now! Send any news or story tips to NEWS continued page 5 ➤ Spotlight [9] 4 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •

that operators have yet to pay nearly a year after receiving City Council approval.

Guadalupe adopted its cannabis ordinance in 2021 as a way to increase revenue coming into its general fund. During the ordinance’s development, the city included a community development agreement in its language—which required each retailer to outline how it would help the community—and required a $3,013 fee. Between 2022 and 2023, the City Council approved two new cannabis dispensaries—Root One and Element 7—to join shops in downtown Guadalupe and approved a cannabis processing facility.

As part of its ordinance, the city established a $10,500 application fee that was intended to cover the cost of time spent by city staff and consultants evaluating the legalization of commercial cannabis uses, enacting the ordinance, creating the application procedures, and administering the process, according to the staff report.

“However, once the conditional use permits were approved, the ongoing costs the city expected to incur related to the creation, negotiations, and execution of the required community benefit agreements for the selected cannabis businesses—as well as certain regulatory and pre-license fees—did not have adopted fees approved by the council to cover these additional costs,” according to the staff report.

To address the financial gaps, the city worked with consultant HdL Companies in 2023 to calculate fees that would be necessary to ensure full cost recovery—including a $3,013 community benefit fee, $1,600 pre-license inspections fee, and a $19,904 annual renewal fee.

“The council adopted the fees last year but hadn’t had the opportunity to impose it because [cannabis retail businesses] haven’t

even exercised their permits … and this doesn’t kick in until then. It’s a renewal fee essentially,” City Attorney Philip Sinco told the council. “We don’t have somebody supervising the program yet. We’re working on that with the grant coordinator to have somebody follow through and monitor these things.”

In a follow-up fee study, HdL found that the pre-license and annual regulatory fees should be increased—with the pre-license inspections jumping to $2,500 from $1,600 and the annual regulatory fees to $20,904 from $19,904, according to the staff report. HdL didn’t recommend any increase for the community benefit agreement fee since these expenses have been incurred.

“We also want some direction as to the essentially $3,000 fees that we have not imposed on them, and some time has passed,” Sinco said. “At staff level, we’re fine telling them they should have been imposed, pay them now, it was on the books; or basically as a show of good faith we could waive those costs.”

According to the staff report, it’s been nearly a year since the City Council approved the first cannabis permit, and more than eight months since it approved the last.

“Once there’s a forgivable absence of being on top of it, we felt awkward asking for it. We wanted to make sure we were acting appropriately,” Sinco said.

City Council agreed that staff should enforce the $3,000 community benefit fee since businesses have received their permits. Councilmember Eugene Costa Jr. asked about the status of the two dispensaries in town.

“That’s beyond the scope of the report,” Sinco responded. “We do know one is going to open in July, and we have no information on the other one.” m

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Connection, socialization


While there are many options for the LGBTQplus community to get together during Pride Month in June and throughout the year, it can be challenging for older community members to have that experience.

“Things like going to a Pride festival might not be accessible to someone who is older,” said Jenise Trinidad Coates, Pacific Pride Foundation programs manager. “The Lavender Elders program works to fill those gaps.”

Pacific Pride Foundation’s Lavender Elders program is meant to help bring Santa Barbara County LGBTQ-plus folks ages 50 and older together. On the first and third Thursday of every month, Pacific Pride Foundation (PPF) hosts Zoom meetings where people can be with other members of the community, said Trinidad Coates, who uses they/them pronouns. The program offers in-person events in Santa Barbara, and PPF is currently trying to expand in-person events to Santa Maria, Lompoc, and other North County communities.

“The way it works in Santa Barbara for in-person is that everyone is able to meet for lunch and that is kind of just an opportunity to really socialize and network and get out and be with other people,” they said. “The Santa Maria portion that I’m hoping to get off the ground and up and running is that in-person portion.”

Through outreach efforts and attending community events, PPF has been working on letting North County residents know that the organization offers its services countywide, including the Lavender Elders program.

“Because we’re coming in kind of newer, most folks assume that we’re Santa Barbara-based only, when really we’re countywide,” Trinidad Coates said. “As of right now, folks are very surprised to hear we have a presence and programs in Santa Maria and Lompoc.”

The Lavender Elders program works in two facets: to provide social opportunities for older folks and to connect LGBTQ-plus individuals to their community, they said.

“Folks who are older tend to not have as much social activities to participate in,” Trinidad Coates said. “As we get older, we are missing the component of seeing people at school or work. Part of the program is that social and fellowship

aspect for folks since most of our group is older. These are folks who are already retired who need a bit of social [activity] in life.”

By 2030, it’s estimated there will be 7 million LGBTQ-plus people living in the U.S. who are 50 and older, according to LGBTQ-plus media advocacy organization GLAAD, but they face unique challenges compared to their non LGBTQ-plus peers.

According to GLAAD, older LGBTQ-plus people are twice as likely to be single and live alone, and four times less likely to have children, making social isolation a significant challenge.

“Fear of, and experience with, discrimination and a lack of cultural competency in health care, housing, and other vital services make LGBTQ people less likely to seek out critical care and services as they age,” according to GLAAD.

In 2018, AARP (formerly the American Association of Retired Persons) found that 34 percent of LGBTQ-plus older people—and 54 percent of transgender older people—reported being worried about having to hide their identity to access housing for older people, according to GLAAD. In addition, limited available research on older adults with HIV show that the AIDs epidemic has disproportionately affected older LGBTQ-plus people.

about the Lavender Elders program, “and that’s why this program is super important and near and dear to my heart.”

The program not only offers a social outlet, but a support network for those who are coming out later in life and learning about their identity, they added.

According to the National Institutes of Health, having pride in one’s identity and connection to one’s community is associated with more positive outcomes for older LGBTQ-plus folks, including higher quality of life and lower internalized homophobia.

“Community is the most important thing, and that’s what this group is able to foster for people who may not have any other way of connecting with their community,” Trinidad Coates said

“When someone goes through the process of coming out ... if it happens at a young age, you have the support of your peers, you might have family support and access to a lot of events you can attend to really … foster that relationship with yourself and that you’ve had with the queer community,” Trinidad Coates said. “If someone is coming out as an older adult, some of those opportunities may not be accessible.”

The online portion of the Lavender Elders program works to make sure that those with health or transportation setbacks can still tap into a community, and PPF offers transportation

through ride shares and partnerships to get people to in-person events, they said.

Alongside getting North County in-person events off the ground, Trinidad-Coates added that PPF would like to expand to take Lavender Elders program members on different outings, like going to museums, and including more social activities.

“I would love for this to be the program people talk about when they find out mom came out of the closet 20 years after their divorce, to meet other people, go out, be social, and hang out with their community,” Trinidad Coates said. “Some folks don’t come out until much later in life, and they really missed out on the experience of having that queer fellowship, and that’s what the Lavender Elders program is able to provide.” m

Reach Staff Writer Taylor O’Connor at toconnor@

Pride Foundation’s Lavender Elders program is designed to bring older LGBTQ-plus folks together Get together Visit to learn more about Lavender Elders and other programs that Pacific Pride Foundation offers.
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Various Dates and Times Sinsheimer Park, SLO


Friday, July 19th • 7:30pm CPAC, Cuesta College, SLO


July 20 & 21 • 10:00am - 6:00pm Laguna Lake Park, San Luis Obispo


Thursday, August 9 • 8:00pm

Vina Robles Amphitheatre, Paso Robles

Overdue breakthrough

The Pride in Mental Health Act hopes to make accessible mental health care services for LGBTQ-plus youth the law

Ahost of Democrats across the United States are trying to bolster access to mental health care and support for LGBTQ-plus youth.

U.S. Sen. Laphonza Butler (D-California), the first Black and openly gay senator to serve in the Senate, introduced the Pride in Mental Health Act on March 14—a day after the Oklahoma medical examiner ruled teenager Nex Benedict’s death a suicide. Benedict, a nonbinary 16-yearold, died a day after a fight in an Oklahoma high school restroom, which was allegedly prompted by bullying over gender identity.

“In the aftermath of discovering nonbinary teen Nex Benedict’s death was ruled a suicide, I think this legislation is really important to highlight how crucial it is that we do more for young LGBTQ-plus kids who maybe don’t have the resources, community, or support to navigate that experience,” Butler spokesperson Christopher Lee told the Sun via email.

If signed into law, the Pride in Mental Health Act would open up grants through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. “Eligible entities” like schools and colleges could apply for these grant funds to provide cultural competency training to caregivers; develop behavioral health and crisis intervention resources; collect data on the behavioral health of LGBTQ-plus youth; and issue school bullying prevention guidelines for LGBTQ-plus students.

A statement from Butler’s office pointed to a 2023 national Trevor Project survey that found 54 percent of participating LGBTQ-plus youth experienced symptoms of depression. Fifteen percent of queer youth reported being threatened with or subjected to conversion therapy.

To combat that, the Pride in Mental Health

and be able to find proper resources and get the help that I needed,” Hardesty said. “I tried to get a therapist or DSPS [Disabled Students Programs and Services] for physical health issues and mental health issues, and I was only ever officially diagnosed with depression. They decided that that wasn’t enough, so they wouldn’t help me, which really, really sucks when you’re trying really hard to get any form of help.” They’re still struggling to find an LGBTQplus-supportive therapist in the county, and they said there are limited options because of insurance hurdles.

For new Cuesta College graduate Maryelizabeth White, who uses nonbinary pronouns, SLO County became a safe queeraffirming space when they moved with their father from Victorville in San Bernadino County.

“I lived in a commuter town in the desert, and everything was about a 30-minute drive away,” White said. “In SLO County, I didn’t have any friends, … and my first introduction into the community itself was going to the Pride fest in 2021. It was crazy, seeing people who are so comfortable with each other, and I felt like a fish out of water, but it was nice.”

Participating in the Pride festival and interacting with Cuesta’s community helped White finally come out to their friends in 2022. But they had trouble finding mental health care in SLO County. It wasn’t until White enrolled in Cuesta that they found an in-person campus therapist who helped them in their journey to figure out who they are.

White switched to a private, insurance-based therapist in their second year at Cuesta.

Act would prohibit grant recipients from providing conversion therapy of any kind, advertising the practice, helping others provide it, and/ or referring young people to conversion resources.

According to the most recent data from 2022-23 in the California School, Climate, Health, and Learning Surveys, 44 percent of queer-identifying ninth graders and 50 percent of 11th graders in the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District responded they’ve been harassed one or two times on school property for their sexual orientation in the past 12 months. Forty-three percent and 59 percent of LGBTQplus ninth graders and 11th graders, respectively, responded “very much true” or “pretty much true” for social emotional distress caused by the reaction to their sexual orientation.

Cuesta College graduate Raven Hardesty, who uses nonbinary pronouns, told the Sun that it was easier accessing a therapist in high school because their mother advocated for them. Now, their mother follows a hands-off approach, even though Hardesty still lives with her.

“She is very insistent that I’m an adult, so I have to do everything myself now even though I don’t know how,” Hardesty said. “I dealt with quite a bit of hostility, especially in high school … and in high school, I kind of realized I had to get thicker skin to deal with it.”

Twenty-year-old Hardesty’s lived in San Luis Obispo County almost all their life. At 12, they came out as pansexual. Around their first two years of high school in Paso Robles, Hardesty came out as gender fluid. By 2021, they realized they were nonbinary.

In Hardesty’s senior year of high school, they said, an adult woman stalked them because of their queer identity and her own alleged mental health issues. Those troubles leaked into Hardesty’s college years when finding an LGBTQplus-supportive therapist proved to be hard for them. Having something like the Pride in Mental Health Act would have helped, they said.

“I’d have someone to talk to about all that

“I mostly chose it because I couldn’t continue Cuesta therapy during the summer or the winter, only during school, when school is in session,” they said. I found that especially during the winter and the summer, I needed therapy the most.”

The downside: White pays for the new service unlike the sessions at Cuesta, which were free. As the former president of the Cuesta Pride club, White advocated for the community college’s mental health program to LGBTQ-plus students.

“The most vocal complaint, I would say, just the lack of knowing what resources were available to everyone,” they said. “People didn’t really realize how many sessions they had. They didn’t know that it was free. They didn’t know that there was an LGBTQ-trained therapist on campus.”

Director of Student Health Services Nicole Johnson told the Sun that one of Cuesta’s licensed therapists was the first in the cohort for the SLO ACCEPTance Project, which aims to provide academically informed, in-depth LGBTQ-plus mental health training for mental health professionals.

She added that the college provides yearround stigma-reducing events, outreach, and training. But serving the growing needs of LGBTQ-plus students out of a small clinic is a challenge, with students sometimes landing on the waitlist for in-person services.

“It is especially challenging, and a barrier to care, if you are seeking a provider with specific training like LGBTQ-plus affirming care,” Johnson said. “Couple these barriers with living in a more rural area like SLO County. We know that we have a difficult time recruiting and retaining trained medical professionals in our area.”

She said she hopes that the Pride in Mental Health Act will consider that local organizations and communities need infrastructure to support legislative change.

“The greatest impact for the students is that it sends a message that acknowledges the barriers they face by the inadequacies of the system,” Johnson said, “and prioritizes their health and safety with legislation that promotes change by identifying the barriers and specific strategies to overcome them in an effort to improve outcomes for LGBTQ-plus students.” m

Reach Staff Writer Bulbul Rajagopal, from the Sun’s sister paper New Times, at brajagopal@

INCLUSIVE JOY: Led by President Maryelizabeth White (center), the Cuesta Pride club celebrated its first Pride Prom last year. COURTESY PHOTO BY RITCHIE BERMUDEZ
8 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •

OUTSIDE: Through the second annual Discover Outside programming, the Land

about its work,

Countywide connection

Land Trust for Santa Barbara County offers Discover Outside—highlighting ecosystems, conservation, and local recreation opportunities

Alongside conserving local lands, the Land Trust for Santa Barbara County wants to teach people about the area they call home, Vanessa Stowers told the Sun.

“We are very lucky to live in this unique space, and it’s something that I don’t ever want to take for granted, so really appreciating why Santa Barbara County is so special—one of those things is the landscape,” said Stowers, the Land Trust development and communications director. “If you can do things that can educate yourself on it … it just makes our community have a little bit more pride.”

The Land Trust for Santa Barbara County works to conserve open space, agricultural lands, and biodiversity hotspots throughout the county. It works with willing landowners to pursue options like easements to protect land in perpetuity, and to monitor and restore lands, and purchase land if the trust has the ability, Stowers said.

“Within the last 40 years, we have conserved [more than] 57,000 acres of land in the county, and one of our big efforts, because we are countywide, is to really make sure the entire county feels like we are a land trust for everyone,” she said. “We are pushing more efforts in our programming.”

These efforts include the Land Trust’s Discover Outside program—a series of free, family-friendly events, public talks, guided treks, shopping days, and a Family Day at Arroyo Hondo Preserve that runs from June 13 to 16 and again from June 20 to 23.

“Discover Outside was established last year just to get people excited about being outdoors and different things happening within the series that catered to everyone—talks for education purposes, led hikes or guided hikes throughout the county,” Stowers said.

One of last year’s highlights returning this year is Family Day at the Arroyo Hondo Preserve, where families can participate in docent-led or self-guided tours and visit education stations to learn more about the creek environment and its inhabitants, she said.

“In addition, we have talks happening throughout the county aimed at educating the public on what we do and why it’s valuable. We are trying to cater to everyone in the community,” Stowers said. “We have some shopping days there where we have partners—if you mention

the Land Trust they will give you a discount or give proceeds back to the Land Trust.”

As a Santa Maria native, Stowers said she’s happy to see more efforts to expand events into North County and ensure that there are opportunities for everyone.

“It’s a great way to learn something new or maybe see a part of the county you haven’t seen before. I know up until I worked at the Land Trust I never went to the Arroyo Hondo preserve,” Stowers said. “It doesn’t always have to be doing something that is maybe not accessible to different ages and abilities to enjoy the outdoors, and the Discover Outside series reflects that because you can appreciate all the county has to offer no matter what your age is, what your ability is.”

All events are free, but some require an RSVP ahead of time. See the full list of events and register at


• Lompoc Parks and Recreation offers teens the opportunity to become involved in their community while receiving work experience and leadership training during the summer through its Volunteen Program. The program is meant for students ages 13 to 15 and will provide hands-on training for teens to acquire new skills, learn responsibility, and provide them with volunteer hours—which may help a teen acquire scholarships and/or employment in the future. Those interested must submit a volunteer application and pass an oral interview. Call (805) 875-8100 or email for an application or additional information.

• Laura Branch, an Ernest Righetti High School science teacher, received the 2023 Santa Barbara County Teacher of the Year award from the Santa Barbara County Office of Education. Branch teaches a variety of science courses, including concurrent physical geology through Allan Hancock College, career technical education (CTE) AP environmental science, and chemistry of the Earth system. She created and developed the curriculum for Santa Maria Joint Union High School District’s first CTE environmental resources pathway. Earlier in her career, she was one of the first teachers in California to develop a stand-alone geology course at the high school level. m

Reach Staff Writer Taylor O’Connor at toconnor@


Nicholas Patrick O’Connor lived most of his life in the Santa Barbara area and the past few years in Kingman, Arizona. He was a talented musician, had a brilliant mind, and was an independent thinker. He was someone who can be described as unique, authentic, creative, intelligent, intuitive, honest, observant, and excelled far beyond what was average in any topic of his interest. Nick did not believe in conforming to a system based on materialism and ego, but instead believed that wisdom and understanding are the keys that unlock truth and a relationship with God. Nick was predeceased by his mother’s father and mother, Milo and Helen Schalla, his father’s father and mother, Dan and Irene O’Connor, and his cousin Brayv O’Connor. Nicholas is loved by his parents, Nancy and Kevin O’Connor, his sister Kelly, her husband Ryan Coffey, their two children Skyla and Zachary, his sister Colleen, her husband Jason Schwartz, his Aunts and Uncles: Sheila and

Rick Starnes, Kathy and Dave Gash, Christina and Cory Lund, Michael O’Connor, Bob and Jeannine Schalla, Merril Lynn and Ken Shamordola, and Carol Schalla. Cousins: Jacqueline and Michael Starnes, Nathan and Lauren Gash, Connor and Heather Lund, Denise, Talon and Chayton Ramirez.

There was a private service for family May 25 in Santa Barbara. Cards may be mailed to: 1607 Mission Dr. #212 Solvang, California 93463.

“You were the light of my life always, and now that you’re with Jesus I know we will be together again soon.” Love, Mom and Dad

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DISCOVER Trust of Santa Barbara County hopes to educate community members including conserving local land like the Dangermond Preserve (pictured). Nicholas Patrick O’Connor • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 9

What do you think of reproductive health care options in Lompoc?

67% I don’t live in Lompoc.

33% It’s really difficult to find a provider and frustrating to get care.

0% It’s OK. There are challenges, but providers and officials are making changes.

0% Much more needs to be done to bridge the gaps.

3 Votes

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Overlooked for too long

Santa Maria High teacher and coach Bill Yanez deserves to be inducted into the school’s Athletics Hall of Fame

Irecently came across the list of second year inductees to the Santa Maria High School Athletics Hall of Fame and was, once again, disappointed to find that longtime Saints’ baseball and basketball coach Bill Yanez was not included. When he was left out last year, I assumed he was simply overlooked by the committee, which has otherwise done an outstanding job establishing and organizing the hall of fame, but to be left out again is a travesty when he was easily one of the best coaches and educators in the school’s history. Because of that, it appears the hall’s committee should be reminded of coach Yanez’s credentials.

Yanez, who died in 2022, came to SMHS in the early 1960s. He had been a great athlete in both high school and college as a baseball pitcher. When he came to Santa Maria High, he first coached basketball under legendary coach Bob McCutcheon. In a story in the Santa Maria Times in 1966, McCutcheon lauded Yanez, saying, “He is an excellent student of basketball, has great desire, and is more than eager to work hard at the game.”

Arguments against wind help fossil fuel

Yes, it is semantics and spin, and the fossil fuel industry and groups like the Charles Koch Foundation must be delighted to have people like Mandy Davis and the REACT Alliance parroting the propaganda they have been feeding them (“Semantics and spin,” May 30).

A recent piece in [the Sun’s sister paper] New Times (“Environmental justice,” April 11) also described how two local fishermen groups sued over offshore wind projects on the baseless claim that a connection exists between sonar surveys and whale morbidity. There is zero evidence that offshore wind activity is harming whales as do ship strikes and fishing gear entanglements. A similar claim used by fishermen’s groups on the East Coast has undermined wind projects in New York.

Mandy makes the claim that “the wind industry is heavily funded by oil companies” as does the REACT Alliance, which claims, “Oil keeps wind afloat.” This is ludicrous. Although public opinion shows that renewable energy remains popular with a majority of Americans, local NIMBY anti-wind groups like REACT are sowing misinformation about wind power, which is becoming an effective tactic in stalling or derailing renewable energy projects. And for fossil fuel idealogues and the climate denial machine assembled from the likes of ExxonMobil, twisting public opinion against renewable energy in would-be host communities is part of their larger mission.

Bill Collins Grover Beach

‘Donald Trump has shown us who he is’

Trump’s conviction in New York reaffirms the principle that no one—not even a former president—is above the law in the United States of America.

The evidence presented to the jury was damning, including numerous falsified documents with Trump’s signature on them. Falsification of business records is a serious crime, and Trump is finally being held accountable just as any other American would. Trump has often been called a fraudster—and now he has been convicted of just that: fraud and trying to illegally pull one over on the American people.

Yanez was even considered as the next varsity basketball coach when McCutcheon left to coach at Allan Hancock College.

Instead, because of his baseball background, Yanez, only 29 at the time, was chosen to take over the Saints’ baseball program. It was a great choice. In his very first year, his team was co-champion of the old Santa Barbara County League, compiling a record of 17-6. A 1967 article in the Santa Maria Times noted the co-championship represented “one of the most successful [baseball] seasons in the school’s history.” He repeated the feat the very next year.

The best was yet come, however. His 1973 Saints, featuring future big-leaguers Bryn Smith and Pat Kelly, won the Northern League with a 20-5 record and advanced to the semifinals of the CIF playoffs before falling to a powerful Edgewood (West Covina) team that also boasted future MLB players, brothers Ron and Gary Roenicke. During his tenure, Yanez’s baseball teams compiled an overall record of 190-105 in 11 years. Not only did three of his players go on to the major leagues, but several others went

the American people and trying to undermine our elections in order to cling to power. This trial was the first of several—he still faces three additional indictments and 54 criminal charges, including federal charges for inciting a deadly insurrection to overturn the 2020 election.

Donald Trump has shown us who he is: a fraudster who will lie and break the law in order to cling to power. We must remember that when we go to the ballot box and cast our vote for the next president.

Anne Toller

Santa Maria

Trump still poses a danger to our democracy

It’s official: After making secret hush money payments to an adult film star 11 days before the 2016 election and falsifying official filings to hide the truth from the public, Donald Trump has been found guilty by a New York jury.

on to play minor league, college, and semi-pro. In 1978, he moved from the diamond to the hardwood to coach a struggling basketball program, which was far removed from the glory days of the 1950s and 1960s. Within a few years, his winning ways were again on display as his 1985 team went 20-6, won the Northern League, and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. For his efforts, Yanez was named the league’s coach of the year. That was the end of his varsity career. During his second tenure as a Saints’ varsity coach, he compiled a record of 72-69. For the next six years he coached the freshman team and had three undefeated squads while winning nearly 100 games. He retired permanently from coaching in 1991 but was still an influential force at the school, teaching English, establishing the philanthropic Saints Varsity Club for athletes, and winning the 1999 Crystal Apple Award, the most prestigious award given to Santa Barbara County educators. In conclusion, I sincerely hope the Hall of Fame Committee will take another look at Coach Yanez as being more than worthy for next year’s induction. m

Carolyn Sherry is a recently retired teacher who taught at Santa Maria High School for 28 years and had the pleasure of working with William Yanez. Send a letter for publication to letters@

Trump’s conviction in New York should remind us all that no one—including a former president— is above the law. It should also remind us of the danger that Trump still poses to our democracy. In the final weeks of the 2016 election, Trump covered up his affair with Stormy Daniels to dupe voters and improve his chances of winning the election. As it turns out, this would only be his first foray into undermining our elections. The New York trial may be over, but Donald Trump still faces three additional indictments and 54 criminal charges for a litany of crimes, including federal charges for his efforts to incite violence and overturn the will of voters after he knew he’d lost the 2020 election. This is a pattern. The jury has done its job to hold Trump accountable. Now, it’s time for the American people to do our part and hold him accountable at the ballot box.

Trump’s felony conviction is not merely about illegal hush money payments made 11 days before an election; it is about safeguarding the integrity of our elections. Trump has a clear pattern of lying to

Sharon Allbright Lompoc
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Pay to stay Opinion

Is there a limit to how high we can raise taxes, even on tourists?

Every four years, it seems like local municipalities devise a way to increase sales tax or transient occupancy tax (TOT). Boy, public safety sure could use a boost, or the roads sure could use an influx of funding, or it’s not really coming out of residents’ wallets so what’s the big deal?

It sounds like a good idea, right? Charge the tourists. They’ll pay it.

Four Santa Barbara County supervisors don’t think it’s a bad idea to raise the county’s bed tax by another 2 percent, which would bring it to 14 percent! That’s a lot. Carpinteria wants its TOT to weigh in at 15 percent, so why stop at 2 percent? Just raise it by 4! Set the bar high so others can reach for it too, as they inevitably will.

It’s already $80 for a weeknight stay at a Motel 6 in Santa Maria and double or more to stay at Motel 6 in Santa Barbara—what’s another $15 to $25 on top of that (and in addition to sales tax) for those people who can barely afford to spend the night at a place that promises to leave the light on for you?

They won’t even notice.

Other municipalities look at what Santa Barbara County is doing and think, “Hey, they’re doing it! We should too!” And then they raise their TOT, which Santa Barbara County residents get to pay when they visit somewhere else. Not be a downer, but WTF is that? I don’t want to pay 15 percent extra on an already ridiculously high hotel price when I visit somewhere—I don’t care if the municipality

needs “discretionary revenue” that it can spend on whatever. And I’m not crazy about TOT money not being earmarked for something specific—like roads or public safety.

But “it could be spent anywhere in the county, not just the unincorporated areas,” CEO Mona Miyasato told supervisors. Oh goody! I bet the 24 hotels and 530 or so short-term rentals are simply thrilled that their customers are paying extra taxes so the money can be spent in incorporated cities that pay their own TOT. But, hey, at least supervisors need to send the tax increase to the ballot first. Voters will get to weigh in!

All it needs is a simple majority to pass and voters are sooo well-educated and smart when looking at everything on the ballot.

Someday, maybe TOT could be 30 percent. Just think of the revenue that would bring in! If an extra 2 percent generates almost $3 million, just imagine … Santa Barbara County would be rich!

But as 4th District Supervisor Bob Nelson pointed out, just because the tax is higher doesn’t mean it will generate more funding—a lesson the county should have already learned with its cannabis tax debacle.

“The message I’ve gotten from the business community is they are concerned, especially as the economy has gotten a little weaker,” he said. “The tourism industry, hotels that struggle to pay employees a living wage—at some point the cost, and total costs, there’s only so much the consumer can tolerate.”

He’s not wrong. m

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brief story, fifty-five words or less, with a headline no longer than seven words.

We accept entries to our annual 55 Fiction writing contest all year long.

Entries submitted by 5 p.m. Monday, June 24, 2024 will be considered for this year’s publications which will be out on July 25, 2024

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Hot Stuff



SANTA MARIA VALLEY/LOS ALAMOS BALLROOM, LATIN, AND SWING DANCE CLASSES Social ballroom, Latin, and swing lessons for all ages. Beginner and advance classes. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, 7-9 p.m. $45-$55. 805-928-7799. KleinDance Arts, 3558 Skyway Drive, suite A, Santa Maria.

CAVE COMEDY NIGHT A night of laughter and celebration as Jessica B. Tovar marks their first year of producing comedy shows at the venue. Don’t miss out on this special night of laughter and camaraderie. June 7 7:30-9:30 p.m. $10. 805-937-8463. Cottonwood Canyon Vineyard And Winery, 3940 Dominion Rd, Santa Maria.

DANCE CLASSES: EVERYBODY CAN DANCE Classes available for all skill levels. Class sizes limited. ongoing Everybody Can Dance, 628 S. McClelland St., Santa Maria, 805-937-6753,

LEARN CALIFORNIA’S OFFICIAL DANCE: WEST COAST SWING Learn west coast swing in a casual, friendly environment, taught by Texas state swing champion, Gina Sigman. Free intro from 6:30 to 7 p.m. Beyond the Basics ($10) is 7 to 7:45 p.m. $10 entry includes social dance (7:45 to 8:15 p.m.). Tuesdays, 6:30-8:15 p.m. 832-884-8114. Cubanissimo Cuban Coffee House, 4869 S. Bradley Rd., #118, Orcutt. VALLEY READS BOOK CLUB The Valley Reads is a monthly book club for adults featuring coffee, snacks, and lively discussion. June 8 2 p.m. Free. 805-9250994. departments/library. Santa Maria Public Library, 421 S. McClelland St., Santa Maria.

CALIFORNIA’S CHANGING LANDSCAPE: THE WAY OF WATER Featuring more than 20 large-format documentary photographs of the Golden State, this timely exhibition showcases George Rose’s recent expansive documentation of California’s dramatic water story. Through July 8 California Nature Art Museum, 1511-B Mission Dr., Solvang,

FAR FROM HOME A solo exhibit of watercolors by artist Martha Inman Lorch that showcase her travels across the globe. She chooses international subjects that catch her eye and imagination. Her unique perspective and watercolor skills make each painting visually enchanting. Reception on June 8, from 2 to 4 p.m. Mondays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. through June. 805 -688-7517. Gallery Los Olivos, 2920 Grand Ave., Los Olivos.


SHOW A night filled with live music, dance, and mesmerizing aerial performances reminiscent of the lively streets of New Orleans. For guests aged 21 and over. June 7 6 p.m. Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum, 3596 Sagunto St., Santa Ynez, 805-688-7889.

UNDER THE SAME SUN: FROM LOWRIDERS TO FARMWORKERS The exhibition features works by five visual artists based in Central and Southern California with their own unique approach as seen in the diversity of the work on display and the variety of styles. Through July 7 Elverhoj Museum of History and Art, 1624 Elverhoy Way, Solvang, 805-686-1211.



Join Sandra Dotson’s Mindful Collage

Journaling class, and enjoy blending art and mindfulness. Discover self-expression through collage techniques, creating a serene space to calm thoughts and set intentions. June 6 1:30-3 p.m. $35. Melville Estate Winery, 5185 E. Hwy 246, Lompoc, 805-735-7030.

THE MAGIC OF MY WORLD The Lompoc Valley Art Association’s Cypress Gallery will be featuring The Magic of My World, an artist show by Kristine Kelly. Through June 30 805-737-1129. Cypress Gallery, 119 E Cypress Ave., Lompoc,


ARROYO GRANDE SUMMER ART IN THE PARK Features dozens of local vendors selling homemade items, free bounce house, music, food trucks, and more. June 8, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. $0-$15. 805-473-5472. Elm St. Park, 380 S Elm St., Arroyo Grande.

DANCE FITNESS ART AND CULTURE FOR ADULTS Discover dance as a form of artistic expression and exercise, using a wide range of styles and genres of music (including modern, jazz, Broadway, ethnic). Tuesdays, 4-5 p.m. $10 drop-in; $30 for four classes. 510-362-3739. Grover Beach Community Center, 1230 Trouville Ave., Grover Beach.

THE FIREBIRD AND THE PIRATE Everybody Can DANCE and the Santa Maria Civic Ballet present this production. June 8, 7-9 p.m. and June 9, 3-5 p.m. $20-$30. 805-489-9444. Clark Center for the Performing Arts, 487 Fair Oaks Ave., Arroyo Grande.

OCEANO SEABREEZE MARKET Discover Oceano is proud to present the Oceano Seabreeze Market featuring handcrafted artisanal goods and exclusive collections from local makers, artisans, and curators. Enjoy shopping, food, drinks, music, and

an afternoon of fun at the historic Oceano Depot. June 8 12-5 p.m. Free. 805-779-1414. Oceano Train Depot, 1650 Front St., Oceano.

PIRATES OF PISMO A-GO-GO The plot follows a young “junior pirate” who plans to celebrate his 21st birthday by breaking away from the grip of his master, the Pirate King. Comical complications arise because of his Feb. 29 birthday, as it only comes around every four years. Through July 6 Great American Melodrama, 1863 Front St., Oceano.


9 TO 5: THE MUSICAL Set in the late 1970s, this story of friendship and revenge is “outrageous, thought-provoking, and even a little romantic.” Pushed to the boiling point, three female coworkers concoct a plan to get even with their egotistical, lying boss. Wednesdays-Saturdays, 7-9 p.m. and Saturdays, Sundays, 2-4 p.m. through June 30 $20-$40. 805-786-2440. shows/9-to-5-the-musical/. SLO Rep, 888 Morro St., San Luis Obispo.

ACT SUMMER THEATRE CAMPS Visit site for details on this summer camp series. June 10 - Aug. 5 SLO Rep, 888 Morro St., San Luis Obispo, 805-786-2440.


Actor’s Edge offers film and television acting training in San Luis Obispo, plus exposure to Los Angeles talent agents. All ages and skill levels welcome. Classes available in SLO, LA, and on zoom. ongoing $210 per month. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo.

ADAM PARKER SMITH: FOR THE TIME BEING This exhibition will feature several works made throughout the artist’s career as sort of a mid-career retrospective. Adam Parker Smith has a unique ability to


For its fifth annual Juneteenth celebration, Juneteenth SYV hosts its Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball and Art Show at the Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum on Friday, June 7, at 6 p.m. Attendees can expect to enjoy drinks, dinner, dessert, and a variety of entertainment, including a special appearance from Princess Tiana (pictured). Visit juneteenthsyv. com to find out more. The Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum is located at 3596 Sagunto St., Santa Ynez.

address complex themes in a whimsical, light-hearted way that makes his work incredibly accessible. Through July 7, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. 805-543-8562. exhibition/adam-parker-smith/. San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, 1010 Broad St., San Luis Obispo.

APRIL BANKS: OUTLANDISH Los Angeles-based artist April Banks is a creative strategist working across visual art, social engagement, and exhibition design. Her practice sits intentionally between image, space, and experience. Through July 29, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. 805-543-8562. San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, 1010 Broad St., San Luis Obispo.

ART AFTER DARK: ART IS US An unforgettable evening where art, rhythm, and grace converge under one roof. June 7, 5 p.m. Drew Davis Fine Art, 393 Pacific St., San Luis Obispo.


An exploration of the the intersection of the analog and the digital space. Artificial intelligence was asked to answer questions relating to the human experience. Featuring the graffiti script of Sam Lopata and the abstract sand stacks of Zoya Lopata Dixon. June 7, 5-8 p.m. Free. 805-439-1611. MYLR Gallery, 1238 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo.



Hometown Realty is pleased to host amazing local artists, rotating their art work each month for the ‘Art After Dark’ calendar year. Reception of food and wine. First Friday of every month, 5-8 p.m. through Nov. 1 Century 21 Hometown Realty, 1103 Toro St., San Luis Obispo, 805-235-4877.


CENTRAL GALLERY Schumacher’s work

is pensive and introspective, inspiring one to take a solitary walk on a cloudy day. Wander in to reflect on her “delicious, wistful landscapes.” Mondays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sundays, 12-4 p.m. Free. 805-747-4200. Art Central, 1329 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo.

BEGINNING WATERCOLOR WITH JAN FRENCH Learn the ways watercolor is apt

to flow (or not), and how you and those colors can “start a tango that will unleash a new relationship with your artistic visions.” For beginners or watercolor artists who would like to “loosen up.” Thursdays, 1:30-4:30 p.m. through June 27 $120 plus materials. 805-747-4200. Art Central, 1329 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo. FIRST FRIDAYS Visit SLOMA on the first Friday of each month for exhibition openings, music, and wines provided by regional winery partners. Admission is free and open to the public. First Friday of every month, 5-8 p.m. Free. 805-543-8562. San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, 1010 Broad St., San Luis Obispo.

IMPROV COMEDY SHOW Hosted by Central Coast Comedy Theater. June 8, 6-8 p.m. The Bunker SLO, 810 Orcutt Road, San Luis Obispo. Presented by Central Coast Comedy Theater. June 14, 6-8 p.m. SLO Public Market, 120 Tank Farm Road, San Luis Obispo. THE LARAMIE PROJECT A breathtaking collage that explores the depths to which humanity can sink and the heights of compassion of which we are capable. June 13 -15 CongregationHouse, 11245 Los Osos Valley Road, San Luis Obispo.

SECOND SATURDAYS SLOMA’s Second Saturdays program encourages intergenerational learning and creative expression for children of all ages. Families are invited to SLOMA’s lawn to learn about the visual arts together using unique activity kits and create an art project inspired by current exhibitions. Second Saturday of every month, 11-1 a.m. through Dec. 14 Free. 805-543-8562. San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, 1010 Broad St., San Luis Obispo. SLO NIGHTWRITERS: A COMMUNITY OF WRITERS SLO NightWriters supports local writers with monthly presentations, critique groups, contests, and other events. Second Tuesday of every month, 6:30-8 p.m. Free. 805-703-3132. slonightwriters. org. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo.

—Caleb Wiseblood
New Times and the Sun now share their community listings for a complete Central Coast calendar running from SLO County through northern Santa Barbara County. Submit events online by logging in with your Google, Facebook, or Twitter account at You may also email Deadline is one week before the issue date on Thursdays. Submissions are subject to editing and approval. Contact Calendar Editor Caleb Wiseblood directly at INDEX Arts....................................... 14 Culture & Lifestyle 16 Food & Drink ......................18 Music 20 10-DAY CALENDAR: JUNE 6 - JUNE 16, 2024
14 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •
Management reserves the right to change or cancel promotions and events at any time without notice. Must be 21 or older. Gambling problem? Call 1.800.GAMBLER. ©2024 Chumash Casino Resort. SCAN TO SEE ALL UPCOMING SHOWS AND PURCHASE TICKETS. ALWAYS AMAZING. NEVER ROUTINE. ALAN PARSONS JUNE 14 | FRIDAY | 8PM MJ LIVE JULY 26 | FRIDAY | 8PM AIR SUPPLY JULY 12 | FRIDAY | 8PM UB40 AUGUST 2 | FRIDAY | 8PM Great Snacks · Cold Beer · Hwy 1 Oceano · 805-489-2499 · ONE FREE SMALL POPCORN! Expires 7/6/24 ON SALE NOW MAY 17 through JULY 6 • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 15


Hot Stuff


This club reads, studies and discusses books chosen by the group which relate to their lives as gay men. All are welcome. Second Monday of every month, 7-9:30 p.m. Free. events/. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo. NORTH COAST SLO COUNTY


Three artist groups of the Central Coast Artists Collective (photographers, sculptors, and craftmakers) show selected works by members in this annual exhibition. Through June 24, 12-4 p.m. Free. 805-772-2504. Art Center Morro Bay, 835 Main St., Morro Bay. FIBER AND TEXTILES BY DEBBIE GEDAYLOO

A self-taught artist who uses observations of the natural world as inspiration. Through June 29, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. 805-772-1068. Gallery at Marina Square, 601 Embarcadero suite 10, Morro Bay.


PARTY Featuring Cathy Russ, Debbie Gedayloo, and Kristina Albion with their photography, textiles, and bags, respectively. June 8 , 3-5 p.m. Free. 805-772-1068. Gallery at Marina Square, 601 Embarcadero suite 10, Morro Bay.

PHOTOGRAPHER CATHY RUSS Russ is a photographer living in Morro Bay whose photography has taken her around the world for decades. Her work features rural and urban scenes, landscapes, wild animals, and much more. Her work is printed on paper, metal, and canvas. Through June 29, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. 805-772-1068.

Gallery at Marina Square, 601 Embarcadero suite 10, Morro Bay.



ANDROID PHONE CLASS First Thursday of every month Oasis Center, 420 Soares Ave., Orcutt, 805-937-9750.

CENTRAL COAST CORVETTE CLUB Open to Corvette owners and enthusiasts. First Thursday of every month, 7 p.m. Free. 805-934-3948.

Home Motors, 1313 E. Main St., Santa Maria. FEEL GOOD YOGA Tuesdays, Thursdays, 8:309:30 a.m. 805-937-9750. Oasis Center, 420 Soares Ave., Orcutt.

FIRST FRIDAY First Friday of every month Historic Old Town Orcutt, S. Broadway and Union Ave., Orcutt.

GROUP WALKS AND HIKES Check website for the remainder of this year’s group hike dates and private hike offerings. ongoing 805-3432455. Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes Center, 1065 Guadalupe St., Guadalupe.


SHOW Hosted by the incredible Grace Towers, with the following queens scheduled to perform: Vivian Storm, Angel D’mon, Melina Poinsettia, Samara Sin, Daphne J, and more. June 8 7-10 p.m. Presqu’ile Winery, 5391 Presqu’ile Dr., Santa Maria, 805-937-8110.

ORCUTT MINERAL SOCIETY Second Tuesday of every month Oasis Center, 420 Soares Ave., Orcutt, 805-937-9750.

SANTA MARIA PRIDE RESOURCE FAIR AND MAKERS MARKET Features nonprofits, crafters, and local businesses. June 9 11 a.m. Santa Maria Fairpark, 937 S. Thornburg St., Santa Maria.


ADVENTURER’S LEAGUE Be prepared for epic excitement with tabletop gaming presented by the Santa Maria Adventurer’s League. Everyone is welcome regardless of previous experience. All children under the ages of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Space is limited and registration is required. June 9 1-4:30 p.m. Free. 805-925-0994. departments/library. Santa Maria Public Library, 421 S. McClelland St., Santa Maria.



TRAIL Join California State Park Docent Sally to explore the habitat of the dunes. Learn about the diverse plants, animals, and habitats that can be found in this unique ecosystem. RSVP at 805-474-2664 June 7 10 a.m.-noon Free.


The Lompoc Valley Art Association presents The Magic of My World, a new solo art exhibit, which debuted in late May and will remain on display through the end of June at Cypress Gallery in Lompoc. This exhibition highlights a collection of artworks by featured artist Kristine Kelly. Visit for more info. Cypress Gallery is located at 119 E. Cypress Ave., Lompoc.

805-474-2664. West Grand Avenue Plaza and Parking Lot, 25 W Grand Avenue, Grover Beach.

ADVENTURES WITH NATURE: HEALTH AND WELLNESS WALK Join State Park Docent Peggy for a presentation on the health benefits of being out in nature by taking a stroll around the Oceano Lagoon. Group will slow down and experience nature and its positive effects it can have on your health and wellbeing. June 13, 9-11 a.m. Free. 805-474-2664. awn/. Oceano Dunes Visitor Center, 555 Pier Ave., Oceano.

BEGINNER GROUP SURF LESSONS AND SURF CAMPS Lessons and camp packages available daily. All equipment included. ongoing Starts at $70. 805-835-7873. Sandbar Surf School Meetup Spot, 110 Park Ave., Pismo Beach.

BEGINNING BALLET FOR ADULTS Enjoy the grace and flow of ballet. No previous experience needed. Wednesdays, 5:15-6:15 p.m. $12 drop-in; $40 for four classes. 510-362-3739. Grover Beach Community Center, 1230 Trouville Ave., Grover Beach.


CAMPS The Central Coast Aquarium is excited to announce that summer camp registrations are now open. Each week-long camp session will include: interactive lessons and activities, outdoor field trips, animal encounters, and more. Mondays, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. through Aug. 5 seasonal-camps/summer-camps/. Central Coast Aquarium, 50 San Juan St., Avila Beach, 805-595-7280.

DIVE AND BEACH CLEANUP Celebrate World Oceans Day with us during this cleanup event with lunch, music, and activities to follow. June 8, 8 a.m. my805tix. com/. Central Coast Aquarium, 50 San Juan St., Avila Beach, 805595-7280.


YOGA FOR FIRST RESPONDERS, EMTS, AND CARETAKERS Class schedule varies. Contact empoweryoga805@gmail for details and reservations. 805-619-0989. empoweryoga805. com. Empower Yoga Studio and Community Boutique, 775 W. Grand Ave., Grover Beach. EMBROIDERER’S GUILD OF AMERICA The Bishop’s Peak Chapter of the Embroiderer’s Guild of America invites you to attend its meeting on the third Saturday of each month. For more information, follow on Facebook at Bishop’s Peak EGA or visit the EGA website. Third Saturday of every month, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. through Nov. 16 Free. Grover Beach Community Center, 1230 Trouville Ave., Grover Beach, 805-773-4832. MULTICULTURAL DANCE CLASS FOR ADULTS Experience dance from continents around the earth, including from Africa, Europe, and more.

Described as “a wonderful in-depth look at the context and history of cultures of the world.” Tuesdays, 5:30-6:30 p.m. $10 drop-in; $30 for four classes. 510-362-3739. Grover Beach Community Center, 1230 Trouville Ave., Grover Beach.

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF WATCH AND CLOCK COLLECTORS, CHPT. 52 Come join a friendly meeting of watch and clock collectors. Members bring watches and clocks to show, plus there are discussions of all things horological. Second Sunday of every month, 1:30-3 p.m. 805-547-1715. php/chapter-52-los-padres. Central Coast Senior Center, 1580 Railroad St., Oceano.

QI GONG FOR LESS STRESS AND MORE ENERGY Experience the energy of Qi Gong through simple standing movements promoting flexibility, strength, relaxation, and increased energy. Suitable for all ages and fitness levels, Qi Gong revitalizes and enriches your life. An outdoor class overlooking the ocean. Wednesdays, 4-5 p.m. $14 per class or $55 for 5-class card with no expiration. 805-440-4561. Margo Dodd Gazebo, Ocean Park Blvd., Shell Beach.


Call for details. Second Saturday of every month, 10 a.m. 805-904-6615. Oak Park Christian Church, 386 N Oak Park Blvd., Grover Beach.


Ask local professionals about how you can stay independent while you age. June 12 10 a.m. Oxford Suites, 651 Five Cities Drive, Pismo Beach.

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES Looking for a fun and educational opportunity this summer? Join the aquarium’s Volunteer Team. No marine science experience is necessary. There are lots of ways to get involved. Check out website for more details. Tuesdays. through Sept. 30 Central Coast Aquarium, 50 San Juan St., Avila Beach, 805595-7280.

THE WAVE: COMMUNITY GATHERING AND DANCE PARTY Features a disco dance with live DJs, dinner, yoga, and more. June 9 4-7 p.m. Dinosaur Caves Park, 2701 Price St, Pismo Beach.

WEEKLY WATER SAFETY LESSONS Facility advertised as open and safe. Give the office a call to register over the phone. MondaysFridays $160-$190. 805-481-6399. 5 Cities Swim School, 425 Traffic Way, Arroyo Grande,

WMW HIGH VIBE HIKE Visit site for tickets and more info on this hike hosted by Women Making Waves. June 8 9 a.m. Pismo Preserve, Mattie Road, Pismo Beach.


AGING GRACEFULLY WITH PREVENTATIVE CARE “We can’t stop getting older, but we can shift our thinking about it.” Moving from “I can’t do anything about it” to “I have some control over how my mind and body ages.” Series sponsored by Unity Five Cities. Details from Over Zoom. Wednesdays, 6-7:30 p.m. through Nov. 20 Love offering. (805) 489-7359. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo. BEYOND MINDFULNESS Realize your potential through individualized meditation instruction with an experienced teacher via Zoom. This class is for those who wish to begin a practice or seek to deepen an existing one. Flexible days and times. Certified with IMTA. Email or text for information. Mondays-Sundays, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Sliding scale. 559-905-9274. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo. CAL HOPE SLO GROUPS AT TMHA Visit website for full list of weekly Zoom groups available. Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays Transitions Mental Health Warehouse, 784 High Street, San Luis Obispo, 805-270-3346. COFFEE CHAT HOMESHARESLO Have an extra room you’d like to rent out? Or looking for affordable room to rent? Are you interested in adding an ADU to your backyard? Hearing the buzz about Waterman Tiny Homes Village? Special opportunity: come take a tour of the Demonstration Cottage. June 12 10:30-11:30 a.m. Free. 805-215-5474. Waterman Village at the Rosa Butron de Canet Adobe, 466 Dana Street, San Luis Obispo. DAILY QIGONG PRACTICE For the early riser or commuter, every weekday morning. Maintain or improve concentration, balance, and flexibility. Includes weekly Friday 3 p.m. class with more practices. Led by certified Awareness Through Movement teacher. Mondays-Saturdays, 6:10 a.m. and Fridays, 3 p.m. $35/week or $125/ month. 646-280-5800. qigong. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo. GUIDED ENERGETIC MEDITATION Are you energetically sensitive? This reoccurring weekly class will be a guided Introduction to Energetic Meditation Techniques that will assist you to: clear your energy field, improve energy flow and energy boundaries, quiet and focus your mind, and be clearer about “Who You Really Are.” Mondays, 6:30-8 p.m. through Nov. 30 $22. 503-929-6416. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo. HEALING DEPRESSION SUPPORT GROUP A safe place to share life experiences with those who have depression or have had and recovered from the devastating effects of depression. Mondays, 6-7 p.m. through Dec. 30 Free. 805-528-3194. Hope House Wellness Center, 1306 Nipomo St., San Luis Obispo. METAPHYSICAL/SPIRITUALITY BOOK CLUB A weekly book discussion, on a wide variety of titles from the general subject of metaphysics, spirituality, and comparative religion. By invitation. For more information, contact David Higgins, email: Location revealed to those invited. Wednesdays Free. Private location, TBA, Location not to be published. MINDFULNESS AND MEDITATION (ONLINE MEETING) Zoom series hosted by TMHA. Thursdays, 10:30 a.m.-noon Transitions Mental Health Warehouse, 784 High Street, San Luis Obispo, 805-270-3346. PICKLES FOR A PURPOSE: SLO A pickleball tournament to benefit Meals that Connect: Senior Nutrition program. Annually, Meals that Connect provides more than 200,000 meals to seniors. Admission includes free event t-shirt, access to online auction, and refreshments. All skill levels are welcome. June 9 8 a.m.-2 p.m. $60. 805-541-3312. French Park, 1040 Fuller Road, San Luis Obispo. PRIDE PROM (GRADES 6-12) For students in grades 6-12 to enjoy live DJs, dancing, youth crafts and games, photography areas, and hang out areas. June 8 7-10:30 p.m. $12. events. Laguna Middle School, 11050 Los Osos Valley Rd., San Luis Obispo, 805-596-4055. Q YOUTH GROUP (VIRTUALLY VIA ZOOM) This is a social support group for LGBTQ+ and questioning youth between the ages of 11-18. Each week the group explores personal, cultural, and social identity. Thursdays, 6-8 p.m. Free. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo.

CULTURE & LIFESTYLE continued page 18

7/4 Jill Knight 7/6 Quadratones
Noach Tangeras
Tap Roots 7/14 Roughouse
Spanky Paul
Joi Polloi
of Tuesday
Jill Knight JULY
7/27 Earls
Call for Reservations 805-927-4502 FEATURING Central Coast bands, BBQ, and beer on our outdoor patio from 12-4pm SADIE JASPER ALBUM RELEASE PARTY Presented by: SADIE JASPER BRIGHAM Does your organization sell tickets? Get more exposure and sell more tickets with a local media pa ner. Call 805-546-8208 for more info. ALL TICKETS. ONE PLACE. Humdinger Brewing, SLO ON SALE NOW! TICKETS AVAILABLE AT MY805 TIX. COM Friday,
July 19 •
JUNE 6 - JUNE 16, 2024
PHOTO COURTESY OF KRISTINE KELLY Spread the word! Send event information to calendar@ MUSIC FLAVOR/EATS INFO CALENDAR OPINION NEWS STROKES ARTS ARTS from page 14 16 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •



House, SLO Improv Comedy Show: Ensemble Team


TICKETS ON SALE NOW AT MY805TIX.COM FEATURED EVENTS FEATURED EVENTS POWERED BY: & UPCOMING EVENTS ON MY805TIX.COM UPCOMING EVENTS ON MY805TIX.COM ONGOING EVENTS ONGOING EVENTS Alternative Tastes Wine Fest: Celebrating Paso’s Unique Varieties SATURDAY, JUNE 8 Broken Earth Winery, Paso Robles Live Oak Music Festival 2024 FRI-SUN, JUNE 14-16 El Chorro Regional Park, SLO Smoke & Song: A Country BBQ featuring Michael Ray FRIDAY, JUNE 28 Tooth & Nail House of Wine, Paso Robles Hope After Dark: More Than a Drag Show SATURDAY, JUNE 8 Presqu’ile Winery, Santa Maria Improv Comedy Shows at Bang the Drum Brewery FIRST THURSDAY OF EVERY MONTH Bang The Drum Brewery, SLO Scan QR code with camera to sign up for the weekly Ticket Wire newsletter. Get all the latest events each Wednesday! SELL TICKETS WITH US! It’s free! Contact us for more info: 805-546-8208 Central Coast Aquarium TICKETS · VOLUNTEER · DONATE FRI: 12–3PM · SAT & SUN: 10AM–4PM San Juan Street, Avila Beach SLO Blues Baseball Games FRI-SAT, JUNE 7-JULY 27 Sinsheimer Park, SLO Lavender U-Pick Experience SUN-SAT, MAY 12-AUG 31 CLOSED ON TUES-THURS Hambly Lavender Farm, San Miguel Brass Mash First Friday FRIDAY, JUNE 7 Liquid Gravity Brewing Company, SLO Remember When Rock Was Young: The Elton John Experience FRIDAY, JUNE 7 Clark Center, Arroyo Grande Cancer Christ with Viscerate, Aseptic, & No Warning Shots FRIDAY, JUNE 7 Dark Nectar Coffee, Atascadero Houseplant Arrangement Class SATURDAY, JUNE 8 Golden State Goods, Atascadero Coastal Wine & Paint Party SATURDAY, JUNE 8 Harmony Cafe at the Pewter Plough, Cambria Art and Sip at the SLO Public Market SATURDAY, JUNE 8 SLO Public Market Improv Comedy Show SATURDAY, JUNE 8 The Bunker SLO Shamanic Yoga & Rituals for Vitality SUNDAY, JUNE 9 Aurora Meditations & Rituals, Morro Bay The Wave: Community Gathering &
Dance Party
Hills June
Idlers Home, Paso
Caves Park, Pismo
Manda Mosher and Dead Rock West, A Tiny Porch Concert SUNDAY, JUNE 9
Strauss Ranch, Agoura
2024 Central Coast
Robles Trivia Wednesday Night with Brain Stew Trivia WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12 Bang The Drum Brewery, SLO The Laramie Project
14 SLO Public Market Do You Compute, Four Day Beard, Silvatici, & Shadow Construct 47 FRIDAY, JUNE 14 Humdinger Brewing, SLO Beer Yoga at Ancient Owl SLO SATURDAY, JUNE 15 Ancient Owl Beer Garden SLO Coastal Wine & Paint Party
JUNE 15 Harmony Cafe at the Pewter Plough, Cambria The Killer Dueling Pianos SATURDAY, JUNE 15 Blast 825 Brewery, Orcutt Shawn Clark with Archer
15 Templeton Mercantile Grads & Dads at The Cliffs 2024
JUNE 16 The Cliffs Hotel and Spa, Pismo Beach The Boys Of Summer Music of The Eagles
JUNE 16 Blast 825 Brewery, Orcutt Mismiths, Bunker Club, Suburban Dropout, & More! SUNDAY, JUNE 16 Humdinger Brewing, SLO Carson
and Hardcastle with Seth Roberts
18 Templeton Mercantile Bootleg Standup Presents Ramsey Badawi
JUNE 18 Libertine Brewing Company, SLO • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 17




80s, & 90s

SATURDAY, JUNE 22 Cottonwood Canyon Winery, Santa Maria

Hot Stuff


Talley Vineyards and Tasting Room in Arroyo Grande is celebrating the release of its vibrant new white blend, 2023 PRIDE, made in celebration of Pride Month, with a special reception on Tuesday, June 11, at 5 p.m. The profits from wine sales and event ticket sales will benefit the Gala Pride and Diversity Center. Admission to the reception is $30, which includes wine flights and food pairings. Visit for more info. The tasting room is located at 3031 Lopez Drive, Arroyo Grande.

CULTURE & LIFESTYLE from page 16

SLO BLUES BASEBALL 33 summer home games held. Go to for full schedule. Tickets available from My805Tix. Through July 27 $10 adults; 12 and under free. 805-512-9996. my805tix. com. SLO Blues Summer Collegiate Baseball, Sinsheimer Stadium at 900 Southwood Dr., San Luis Obispso.

SLO NOONTIME TOASTMASTERS CLUB MEETINGS Want to improve speaking and leadership skills in a supportive and positive environment? During COVID, we are meeting virtually. Contact us to get a meeting link for info. Tuesdays, 12-1 p.m. Free. Zoom, Online, Inquire for Zoom ID. SLO PUBLIC MARKET’S THIRD ANNUAL SUMMER CELEBRATION With fabulous live dance music from Riff Tide, food and drinks, talented local vendors, and family and doggie-friendly fun for all ages. June 8 1:30-4 p.m. Free show. 805-210-9698. San Luis Obispo Public Market, 3845 S. Higuera St, San Luis Obispo.

SLO RETIRED ACTIVE MEN: WEEKLY COFFEE MEETING SLO RAMs is a group or retirees that get together just for the fun, fellowship, and to enjoy programs which enhance the enjoyment, dignity, and independence of retirement. Thursdays, 8:30-9:30 a.m. $10 coffee meeting. Madonna Inn, 100 Madonna Rd., San Luis Obispo.

SUMMER SOIREE AND SALE Honoring and celebrating our customers at our new showroom located at 1227 Archer Street on the corner of Higuera in SLO. Offering 10 percent on all spas, 30 percent on all addons, and up to 25 percent off on all patio furniture. June 8 , 4-7 p.m. 805-439-4404. CCH Enterprise, 1227 Archer St., San Luis Obispo.



Alcoholics Anonymous is a voluntary, worldwide fellowship of folks from all walks of life who together, attain and maintain sobriety. Requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. Email for password access. Sundays, 7-8 p.m. No fee. Online, See website, San Luis Obispo.

TECH BREW MEETUP Tech Brew is a free networking event where people interested in technology can hang out in an informal environment with a small TEDtalk-like presentation from an interesting speaker. Learn more online. Second Monday of every month, 5-7 p.m. 805-323-6706. StoryLabs, 102 Cross St, Suite 220, San Luis Obispo.

TEEN MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT GROUP Learn more about mental health

will introduce embodiment practices for women to identify and access safety, love, and belonging in their body as it relates to their sensuality. Women will learn how to rewire their nervous system to bridge resiliency and pleasure together. June 8 2-4 p.m. $98. 805-305-5609. christianamarie. com/pleasure-pulse-playshops. Bare Heart Boudoir, 1333 Van Beurden, Los Osos. MORRO BAY


DISCUSSION GROUP A group of metaphysically minded individuals that have been meeting for many years now in the Coalesce Chapel. Club offers a supportive metaphysical based community. Members discuss a different topic each week. All are welcome to join. Fridays, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Suggested donation of $10-$15. Coalesce Bookstore, 845 Main St., Morro Bay,


and coping skills to help you through your journey towards wellness and recovery. Thursdays, 4:30-6 p.m. Free. 805-5406576. Hope House Wellness Center, 1306 Nipomo St., San Luis Obispo.

TRANS* TUESDAY A safe space providing peer-to-peer support for trans, gender non-conforming, non-binary, and questioning people. In-person and Zoom meetings held. Contact for more details. Tuesdays, 7-9 p.m. Free. GALA Pride and Diversity Center, 1060 Palm Street, San Luis Obispo, 805-541-4252.


This group is a safe place for trans* and gender non-conforming people, as well as those questioning, from ages of 11 to 18. A facilitated emotional support group to be heard, share your story, and hear stories that may sound surprisingly like your own. Second Tuesday of every month, 6-8 p.m. Free. GALA Pride and Diversity Center, 1060 Palm Street, San Luis Obispo, 805-541-4252.

VOLUNTEERS URGENTLY NEEDED Hospice volunteers find working with patients to be very gratifying and emotionally meaningful. This is an excellent use of time for retirees, students, or anyone who feels called to give back to your community. Give the gift of time that only CCHH Hospice fills. Train free in mid-June for three Fridays only. Fridays, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. through June 28 Free. 805-305-7980. hospice-volunteer/. Central Coast Home Health and Hospice, 253 Granada, San Luis Obispo.


CENTRAL COAST WOOD CARVERS Learn the art of wood carving or wood burning. Join Central Coast Wood Carvers in Morro Bay at St. Timothy’s. Open for beginners, intermediate, or advance. Learn a wide range of techniques and skills. Tuesdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Free. St. Timothy’s Catholic Church, 962 Piney Way, Morro Bay, 805-772-2840, index.html.

CO-DEPENDENTS ANONYMOUS MEETING Co-Dependents Anonymous (CoDA) is a Twelve Step recovery program for anyone who desires to have healthy and loving relationships with themselves and others. Meeting is hybrid (both in person and on Zoom). For information, call 805-900-5237. Saturdays, 1-2:15 p.m. Free. Cambria Connection, 1069 Main St., Cambria, 805-927-1654.



Hosted by Aurora Meditations and Rituals. June 9, 8:30 a.m. Beach Access Parking Lot, 102 Atascadero Road, Morro Bay. WORLD OCEAN DAY BEACH CLEANUP AT MORRO ROCK Join the Morro Bay

National Estuary Program for a beach cleanup in honor of World Ocean Day. Participants will be picking up trash on the beaches, roads, and trails around Morro Rock. June 8 , 10 a.m.-noon Free. Morro Rock, Coleman Drive, Morro Bay.


SANTA MARIA VALLEY/LOS ALAMOS FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS AT COSTA DE ORO Featured vendors in the series include Cali Coast Tacos, Cubanissimo, Danny’s Pizza Co., Chef Ricks, and more. Call venue for monthly schedules. Fridays 805-922-1468. Costa De Oro Winery, 1331 S. Nicholson Ave., Santa Maria.

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS AT WINE STONE INN Fridays, 5-8 p.m. Wine Stone Inn, 255 W. Clark Ave., Orcutt, 805-332-3532,

FRIDAY NIGHT FUN Karaoke with DJ Nasty. With Beer Bucket specials. Kitchen stays open late. Come out and sing your favorite song. Fridays, 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Roscoe’s Kitchen, 229 Town Center E, Santa Maria, 805-623-8866.

NICK THE GREEK CELEBRATES SANTA MARIA GRAND OPENING Authentic Greek street-food restaurant Nick the Greek is celebrating the opening of its new Santa Maria location by welcoming the community with free lunch (one entree per person) from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on June 11. June 11 , 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Free. Nick the Greek, 479 E. Betteravia Road, Santa Maria,

PRESQU’ILE WINERY: WINE CLUB Call or go online to make a reservation to taste at the winery or find more info on the winery’s Wine Club offerings. ongoing Presqu’ile Winery, 5391 Presqu’ile Dr., Santa Maria, 805-937-8110.

SECOND ANNUAL WEST COAST COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY WINE FESTIVAL An opportunity for universities and community colleges in California, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona to showcase their wines and winemaking programs. Wine tastings will be provided by representatives from the colleges and local wineries. Small bites will be served by local restaurants. June 8 1-4 p.m. Allan Hancock College, 800 S. College Drive, Santa Maria.

FOOD & DRINK continued page 19

Tickets on sale now at POWERED BY: & Scan QR code with camera to sign up for the weekly Ticket Wire newsletter and get all the latest events each Wednesday SELL TICKETS WITH US! IT’S FREE! CONTACT US FOR MORE INFO. Summer Solstice Full Moon Ceremony THURSDAY, JUNE 20 The Barn at Fog’s End, Cambria Death Over Bakersfield 2024 FRI & SAT, JUNE 21 & 22 Grumpy’s Brewing Co., Bakersfield Open Farm Days: SLO CO Farm Trail FRI-SUN, JUNE 21-23 Paso Robles & SLO Treat Yo’ Self: A Decadent Experience in Honor of Pride Month MONDAY, JUNE 24 Mistura, SLO SLOFunny Comedy Show, Hosted by James Uloth FRIDAY, JUNE 28 JUSTIN Downtown Tasting Room, Paso Robles Big Wheel Cobra FRIDAY, JUNE 28 Templeton Mercantile Club Sombra at Humdinger Brewing FRIDAY, JUNE 28 Humdinger Brewing, SLO Improv Comedy Show SATURDAY, JUNE 29 The Bunker SLO SLOFunny Comedy Show Hosted by James Uloth SATURDAY, JUNE 29 Morro Bay Eagles Club Coastal Wine & Paint Party SATURDAY, JUNE 22 Harmony Cafe at the Pewter Plough, Cambria 2024 Live at the Lighthouse Concert Series SATURDAYS, JUNE 22-OCT 12 Point San Luis Lighthouse, Avila Beach Atascadero Lakeside WineFest SATURDAY, JUNE 22 Pavilion on the Lake, Atascadero BrainSoil7: Celestial
Pat Benatar, Van
Blast 825
Art Studio, SLO
Tribute Show to
Warning, &
Brewery, Orcutt
Odyssey, Classic Rock from the 70s,
By The Sea Productions Presents: Sylvia JUNE 21-JULY 7 545 Shasta Ave, Morro Bay Full Moon Yoga, Meditation, and Sound Bath Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort & Spa, SLO Lavender Farm Yoga California Lavender Honey Farm, San Miguel
JUNE 6 - JUNE 16, 2024
18 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •


LOS ALAMOS A carefully curated open air artisan and farm market. Features great vintage finds, handwoven and hand dyed textiles, hand-spun yarn, organic body care products, and locally grown organic eats. Second Saturday of every month, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. 805-722-4338. Sisters Gifts and Home, 349 Bell Street, Los Alamos.

SIPPIN’ SUNDAYS Every Sunday, come cozy up inside the tasting room and listen to great artists. Sundays, 1-4 p.m. Free. 805-937-8463. Cottonwood Canyon Vineyard And Winery, 3940 Dominion Rd, Santa Maria.

TACO TUESDAY Tuesdays, 5-8 p.m. Wine Stone Inn, 255 W. Clark Ave., Orcutt, 805332-3532,


Call venue or visit website to find out about featured vintners. Thursdays Steller’s Cellar, 405 E. Clark Ave., Orcutt.

WINE AND DESIGN CLASSES Check Wine and Design’s Orcutt website for the complete list of classes, for various ages. ongoing Varies. orcutt. Wine and Design, 3420 Orcutt Road, suite 105, Orcutt.


GAME NIGHT (INCLUDING DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS) Come and play the games provided or bring your own whilst enjoying a beer, wine, coffee, or cheese plate. Join in the Dungeons and Dragons game too if you like (over 21s, no gambling allowed). First Thursday of every month, 6:30-9 p.m. through June 6 Free. 805-6869126. Arrowsmith’s, 1539 Mission Drive, Solvang.


a Saturday afternoon in the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley, tasting wine from 28 local wineries, listening to world-class,

professional jazz musicians, and sampling

27 different olive-themed dishes prepared by local chefs. June 8 , 1-4 p.m. $100. 805697-6145. Lavinia Campbell Park, 2398 Alamo Pintado Ave., Los Olivos.


This is an interactive wine school event where sommelier and wine educator Sam Schmitt presents a curated selection of wines, whilst you relax and taste them and vote for your favorite. June 9 7-8:30 p.m. $45, or $75 for two. 805-686-9126. Arrowsmith’s, 1539 Mission Drive, Solvang.



TUESDAYS CLASH Don’t miss Head Games Trivia at COLD Coast Brewing Company every Tuesday night. Teams can be up to 6 members. Earn prizes and bragging rights. Kekas will be serving their delicious local fare. Fun for all ages. Tuesdays, 7-9 p.m. Free. 805-819-0723. COLD Coast Brewing Company, 118 W Ocean Ave, Lompoc.


Features a brunch buffet, live music, and more. Celebrate the accomplishments of our graduates and cheers to all the best dads out there. June 16 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. The Cliffs Hotel and Spa, 2757 Shell Beach Rd, Pismo Beach, 805-773-5000.


New topics each month with a thorough demo and explanation of the process that creates non-alcoholic, probiotic, and nutrient-dense fermentations. Leave the class confident and prepared with recipes to make your own at home. Limited seating; reserve spot prior to class by phone/email. Second Sunday of every month, 3:30-5 p.m. $30. 805-8016627.

Kulturhaus Brewing Company, 779 Price St., Pismo Beach.

PRIDE RELEASE CELEBRATION Talley Vineyards is celebrating the release of its vibrant new white blend, 2023 PRIDE. The profits from wine sales and event ticket sales will benefit the Gala Pride and Diversity Center. June 11 5 p.m. $30. Talley Vineyards, 3031 Lopez Dr., Arroyo Grande.

TRIVIA NIGHT Join BrainStew Trivia for a hilariously witty evening of trivia in Pismo. Teams of 1 to 4 people. Prizes awarded to the first and second place teams. Kitchen is open until 7:30 p.m. for brain fuel. Beer, cider, wine, and non-alcoholic options. First Thursday of every month, 6:30-8 p.m. Free. 805-295-6171. Kulturhaus Brewing Company, 779 Price St., Pismo Beach.



MARKET Visit site for tickets and more info. June 8 , 2:30 p.m. SLO Public Market, 120 Tank Farm Road, San Luis Obispo.


BRUNCH Tickets include a full brunch, complimentary mimosa, and educational program with esteemed Dr. Jay Bettergarcia, associate professor in psychology and child development at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. June 9 10 a.m.-noon $50. Bang the Drum Brewery, 1150 Laurel Lane, suite 130, San Luis Obispo, 805 242-8372.


BREAKFAST Join the SLO Grange Hall for a good old-fashioned pancake breakfast. Pancakes, bacon, eggs, juice and coffee; all for a low suggested donation price of $10, with proceeds to benefit SLO Grange Hall 639. Second Sunday of every month, 8-11 a.m. $10. 805-543-0639. San Luis Obispo Grange Hall, 2880 Broad St., San Luis Obispo.

Hot Stuff JUNE 6 - JUNE 16, 2024 HOT STUFF continued page 20 FOOD & DRINK from page 18 e Pirate & the Firebird Saturday, June 8, 7pm Sunday, June 9, 3pm Clark Center for the Performing Arts 487 Fair Oaks Ave Arroyo Grande Tickets: Adults $30 Children $20 Tickets available online or at the box o ce 805-489-9444 Ballet Camp 2024 Ages 7 – 14 • Camp Meets – M-F 9-3 Session 1 - June 17-28 • Session 2 - July 1-12 ENROLL TODAY! 805.345.5570 800 S Broadway, Santa Maria • F l Our Fo steps! Everybody Can DANCE Summer Movie Night Presents JUNE 19, 2024 START TIME: 7:30PM BRING CHAIRS AND BLANKETS & ENJOY THE SHOW 241 S BROADWAY, OLD ORCUTT, CA MEET US UNDER THE WATER TOWER call for reservations (805) 937-4251 7200 Shack: Open Fri-Sun only | 11am-4pm FOXEN: Open Daily by Reservations 7200 & 7600 Foxen Canyon Road | Come enjoy the sunshine at FOXEN and The Shack! Wines of Elegance & Balance Since 1985 • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 19



BOYS OF SUMMER Enjoy live music outdoors at the Stockyard. June 16 Blast 825 Brewery, 241 S Broadway St., Ste. 101, Orcutt, 805-934-3777,

HAPPY HOUR MUSIC SERIES Enjoy live music at the winery most Friday evenings. Check site for concert schedule. Fridays Presqu’ile Winery, 5391 Presqu’ile Dr., Santa Maria, 805-937-8110.


Valley Senior Citizens Club presents its Keeping it Blue dance. Featuring the Riptide Big Band with vocalists Bob Nations, Mitch Latting, and this month, guest vocalist Liz Douglas. Free thanks to grant funding from Community Foundation of SLO County. June 9 1:30-4 p.m. Free. 775-813-5186. Elwin Mussell Senior Center, 510 Park Ave., Santa Maria.

LADIES NIGHT OUT Music by DJ Van Gloryious and DJ Panda. Features delicious daiquiri specials. Thursdays, 8 p.m.-midnight Roscoe’s Kitchen, 229 Town Center E, Santa Maria, 805-623-8866.


Enjoy live music most Fridays at the venue. Call venue or check website to find out who’s performing. Fridays Steller’s Cellar, 405 E. Clark Ave., Orcutt.

MUSIC AT ROSCOE’S KITCHEN Live DJ and karaoke every Friday and Saturday night. Featured acts include Soul Fyah Band, DJ Nasty, DJ Jovas, and more. Fridays, Saturdays, 9 p.m.-2 a.m. Roscoe’s Kitchen, 229 Town Center E, Santa Maria, 805-623-8866.

Lessons/lessons.html. Coelho Academy of Music, 325 E. Betteravia Rd., Santa Maria. NOTHING BUT TROUBLE Enjoy live music outdoors at the Stockyard. June 9 Blast 825 Brewery, 241 S Broadway St., Ste. 101, Orcutt, 805-934-3777, blast825brewery. com/.

SUNDAY NIGHT FUN End the weekend with some good vibes. Music by DJ Van Gloryious. Sundays, 8 p.m.-midnight Roscoe’s Kitchen, 229 Town Center E, Santa Maria, 805-623-8866.

THREE 4 ALL Enjoy live music outdoors at the Stockyard. June 8 Blast 825 Brewery, 241 S Broadway St., Ste. 101, Orcutt, 805934-3777,

WILL BREMAN LIVE Part of the Happy Hour Music Series. June 7 5 p.m. and June 14 , 5 p.m. Presqu’ile Winery, 5391 Presqu’ile Dr., Santa Maria, 805-937-8110,


ALAN PARSONS LIVE See the legend live in concert in the Samala Showroom. June 14 , 8 p.m. $49-$79. Chumash Casino Resort, 3400 E. Highway 246, Santa Ynez, 800-248-6274, entertainment.

CJ SOLAR LIVE Enjoy live country music. Part of the Music in the Garden series. June 9, 3 p.m. $37. Solvang Festival Theater, 420 2nd St., Solvang, 805-686-1789.

LIVE MUSIC SUNDAYS Sundays, 2-6 p.m. Brick Barn Wine Estate, 795 W. Hwy 246, Buellton, 805-686-1208,

The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District


Learn to play piano, drums, guitar, base, ukulele, or violin, or take vocal lessons. ongoing 805-925-0464.

Special Education Child Find

MUSIC IN THE GARDEN This ongoing summer concert series spotlights a variety of musical acts. Afternoon performances held on various Sunday afternoons throughout the summer. Through Sept. 1 Solvang Festival Theater, 420 2nd St., Solvang, 805-686-1789.

SANTA YNEZ VALLEY WIND ENSEMBLE SUMMER CONCERT The SYV Wind Ensemble has entertained at parades,


The Morro Bay Estuary Program hosts its World Ocean Day Cleanup event at Morro Rock on Saturday, June 8, from 10 a.m. to noon. The public is welcome to attend and help pick up litter and debris around Morro Rock. Trash grabbers, bags, buckets, disposable gloves, and more will be provided. Visit the program’s Eventbrite page to find out more about the event.

holiday festivals, and more. Don’t miss their lively Summer Concert on the beautiful Skytt Terrace at Elverhøj Museum. Music selections include Ray Charles, Sonny Rollins, John Phillip Sousa, and more. Bring a picnic basket and blanket/chairs. June 8 , 2 p.m. Free. 805686-1211. Elverhoj Museum of History and Art, 1624 Elverhoy Way, Solvang.

WINE DOWN WEDNESDAYS Wednesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Brick Barn Wine Estate, 795 W. Hwy 246, Buellton, 805-686-1208,



2024 Featuring some of best local and regional bands all summer long. Food, craft vendors, and activities for the kids. Free and all ages welcome. Sundays, 3-6 p.m. through Aug. 18 Free. 805-473-4580. Ramona Garden Park Center, 993 Ramona Ave., Grover Beach. KARAOKE EVERY FRIDAY Enjoy some good food and karaoke. Fridays, 5-8 p.m. 805-723-5550. The Central Grill, 545 Orchard Road, Nipomo.

The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District (SMJUHSD) seeks to identify, locate, and evaluate high school age students suspected of having a disability who may be eligible for special education services designed to meet their educational needs at no cost to families. This includes students that are highly mobile, migrant, experiencing homelessness, students that are wards of the state, and students attending private schools located within SMJUHSD boundaries.

If you suspect your child has a disability, contact the school special education department or district office Special Education Department. Staff | Special Education | Santa Maria Joint Union High School District (

El Distrito Escolar de las Escuelas Preparatorias de Santa Maria Educación

Especial Búsqueda de Estudiantes

El Distrito Unificado de Escuelas Preparatorias de Santa Maria (SMJUHSD) busca identificar, localizar y evaluar a los estudiantes en edad de escuela preparatoria sospechosos de tener una discapacidad que puede ser elegible para servicios de educación especial diseñados para satisfacer sus necesidades educativas sin costo alguno para las familias. Esto incluye a los estudiantes que son altamente móviles, migrantes, sin hogar, estudiantes que están bajo la tutela del estado, y los estudiantes que asisten a escuelas privadas ubicadas dentro los limites de SMJUHSD.

Si sospecha que su hijo tiene una discapacidad, comuníquese con el departamento de educación especial de la escuela u oficina de Educación Especial del distrito SMJUHSD.Staff | Special Education | Santa Maria Joint Union High School District (


The City of Pismo Beach Recreation Division proudly presents the Pacific Breeze Concerts at Pismo Beach Rotary Amphitheater at Dinosaur Caves Park. This three show summer series will feature exceptional regional musical groups as well as special family activities. Food available for purchase. June 8 , 1-4 p.m. Free. Dinosaur Caves Park, 2701 Price St, Pismo Beach.


Craig A. Meyer as Almost Elton John, with music by The Rocket Band. This spectacular musical journey celebrates the decades of chart-topping hits of Sir Elton John. June 7 7:30-10 p.m. $45-$75. 805-489-9444. the-elton-john-experience/. Clark Center for the Performing Arts, 487 Fair Oaks Ave., Arroyo Grande.


4000. Mulligans Bar and Grill, 6460 Ana Bay Road, Avila Beach.


2024 LIVE OAK MUSIC FESTIVAL Expect a fun-filled weekend of great music, art, camping, activities, and reuniting with friends and family. June 14 -16 my805tix. com/. El Chorro Regional Park, California 1, San Luis Obispo.

BRASS MASH: FIRST FRIDAY First Fridays are magical nights filled with the vibrant energy of our all-horn band. Join the festivities at Liquid Gravity and immerse yourself in the unique fusion of your favorite rock and pop songs. First Friday of every month, 6-10 p.m. Liquid Gravity, 675 Clarion Court, San Luis Obispo.



The Cal Poly Choirs and Symphony will combine to present repertoire the groups will perform while on tour in France. Repertoire will include selections by American composer Dan Forrest as well as Canadian composer Nathaniel Dett’s “Chariot Jubliee.” June 8 , 7:30 p.m. $15 and $20 general; $10 students. 805-756-4849. Performing Arts Center, 1 Grand Ave., San Luis Obispo. LIVE MUSIC AT KROBAR Enjoy live music at Krobar, which showcases local, talented artists of all music genres. Kick-off your weekend right, grab your favorite seasonal craft cocktail, and vibe to the sounds of the night. Follow on Instagram to find out who is playing. Every other Friday, 6-9 p.m. and Saturdays, 6-9 p.m. through Aug. 31 Free. 833-576-2271. Krobar Craft Distillery, 1701 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo.


ATTENTION all former SMJUHSD Special Education Students born 1997 and 1998!

BEACH Up in the Air will play its unique blend of upbeat originals and danceable covers. June 8 5-7 p.m. Free. 805-595-

Cal Poly’s jazz combos will perform classic jazz repertoire as well as original student compositions. With Dylan Johnson, director. June 7 7:30 p.m. Free. 805-7562406.

Cal Poly Davidson Music Center, Room 218, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

All records for any Special Education student that was born within 1997-1998 and attended a Santa Maria Joint Union High School District school, your physical special education records are available for pick up at no charge from the District Office. All 1997 Records not picked up by June 1, 2023 and 1998 Records not picked up by June 1, 2024 will be destroyed.

HEARTLESS: A TRIBUTE TO HEART Heartless is California’s premier Heart tribute band, inspired by more than 30 years of rock and roll magic from sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson. At every performance, Heartless takes you on a musical journey from the 1970s. June 8 8-10 p.m. $20. 805-225-1312. The Siren, 900 Main St., Morro Bay. MORRO BAY WHITE CAPS COMMUNITY BAND CONCERT Under the baton of conductor Brenda Hascall, The Morro Bay White Caps will perform a selection of classical, popular, and movie music. The band is seeking new members (for more information, visit their website). June 8 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Free; donations accepted. Morro Bay S. T Pier, 1185 Embarcadero, Morro Bay. THE MOTHER CORN SHUCKERS AND WOLF JETT June 7 7:30 p.m. The Siren, 900 Main St., Morro Bay, 805-225-1312, m

If you have any questions, or to arrange a pickup date/time, contact:

Sandra Hernandez/ Dept. of Special Education Santa Maria Joint Union High School District 2560 Skyway Dr., Santa Maria, CA 93455 805-922-4573 ext. 4311

ATENCION estudiantes anteriores de SMJUHSD nacidos en 1997 y 1998!

Todos los registros de cualquier estudiante de Educación Especial que haya nacido dentro de 1997 -1998 y asistió a una escuela del Distrito Escolar de las escuelas preparatorias de Santa Maria, sus registros físicos de educación especial están disponibles para recoger sin cargo en la Oficina del Distrito. Todos los registros del 1997 que no hayan sido recogidos para el 1 de junio de 2023 y registros del 1998 que no hayan sido recogidos para el 1 de junio de 2024 serán destruidos. Si tiene alguna pregunta, o para programar una fecha/hora de recogida, comuníquense con:

Sandra Hernandez/ Dept. de Educacion Especial

Santa Maria Joint Union High School District

2560 Skyway Dr., Santa Maria, CA 93455

805-922-4573 ext. 4311

FILE PHOTO BY CAMILLIA LANHAM Hot Stuff JUNE 6 - JUNE 16, 2024 HOT STUFF from page 19 20 • Sun • June 6 - June 13, 2024 •
GET READY TO CHOOSE YOUR FAVORITE! 805-347-1968 The 2024 Best of Northern Santa Barbara County voting begins on June 13! 13! • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 21


Chumash Casino Resort presents Alan Parsons, live in concert

Grammy Award-winner and Santa Barbara resident Alan Parsons will perform at the Chumash Casino Resort in Santa Ynez on Friday, June 14, at 8 p.m. Tickets to the concert, held in the resort’s Samala Showroom, range between $49 and $79.

Parsons’ career as a songwriter, record producer, and audio engineer spans several decades. During his time as an engineer at Abbey Road Studios, he worked on two Beatles albums— Abbey Road and Let It Be —during the late 1960s.

His involvement with Pink Floyd’s iconic album The Dark Side of the Moon brought Parsons worldwide recognition, according to press materials, and led him to create The Alan Parsons Project, alongside songwriter and producer Eric Woolfson.

He’s received more than a dozen Grammy nominations over the years and scored his first win in 2019. In 2018, Parsons performed at the Chumash Casino Resort and donated all of the show’s proceeds to first responders and local organizations serving Santa Barbara’s flood victims after the Thomas Fire debris flow.

To find out more about Parsons’ upcoming show at the casino, call (805) 686-0855 or visit The resort is located at 3400 Highway 246, Santa Ynez.

Melville Vineyards and Winery hosts collage journaling workshop

Described as a blend of art and mindfulness, a collage journaling class—titled Crafting Intentions with Mindfulness— will take place at Melville Vineyards and Winery in Lompoc on Thursday, June 6, from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Attendees of the workshop will have the opportunity to “discover self-expression through collage techniques” in a serene space “to calm thoughts and set intentions,” according to press materials.

The class is led by Sandra Dotson, the founder of Entangled Co. Dotson is a self-taught artist with experience in various media—including watercolor, jewelry, and wire weaving—and a background in retail sales and computer science, according to the Santa Ynez Valley resident’s website. Dotson’s workshop at Melville Vineyards and Winery will include an intro to collage art and compositional concepts, and tips on effectively organizing thoughts in order to set intentions and translate those intentions visually. Each participant will receive a journal, collage materials, glue, scissors, and other tools to complete their projects.

Admission to the event is $35. To register or find out more about Dotson’s workshops and artwork, visit entangledco. com or call Melville Vineyards and Winery at (805) 735-7030. The venue is located at 5185 Highway 246, Lompoc. m

Harlequin hues

While horror movies often give dolls and clowns a bad rap, local artist Jasmine Gonzalez is shedding some neutral light on the latter, but with inspiration from a peculiar artifact from both groups.

A few months ago, Gonzalez attended an estate sale where she found a vintage brochure that highlighted a club dedicated to crafting clown dolls and clown teddy bears.

“It was such an odd find,” Gonzalez said of the 1970s-ish relic. “There’s a photo of a woman posing with what looks like a bunch of children, and then you look closer and you realize they’re all dolls surrounding her.”

These types of photos and other elements of the brochure—full of clown imagery that strikes an eerie balance between creepy and jovial—inspired the artist’s new clown-centric mixed media exhibit, currently on display at Eye on I, a restaurant and art space in Lompoc, where it’ll remain on display through the end of June.

Gonzalez described the month-long showcase as “a collection of some weird and funky clownrelated stuff that I’ve been working on,” with many collage pieces incorporating snippets from the brochure she found.

“Some of the images I’ve actually been playing with, either duplicating or manipulating, and then incorporating in these pieces,” said Gonzalez, who hopes the exhibit will grab the attention of passersby, whether they love or hate clowns.

“I’m planning to stop people in their tracks, whether that’s good or bad,” the artist said with a laugh.

For one of the artist’s

collage pieces, Gonzalez experimented by dragging a profile of a clown’s face up and down a scanner, which elongated the clown’s visage to surreal proportions in the ensuing prints.

“I started dragging and playing around with it [on the scanner] to see what it would do, and it created some pretty terrifying images,” said Gonzalez, who adds colorful nonclown flourishes, such as butterflies and other symbols, to some works in order to pull the viewer’s focus in a different direction, “almost to confuse the person, but in an intriguing kind-of-creeped-outbut-you-think-it’s-OK kind of way.”

“I just like things like that,” Gonzalez said. “If it’s something that can pull me out of the monotony of my autopilot throughout my day … that intrigues me.”


the eye of the beholder

To find out more about Lompoc-based artist Jasmine Gonzalez, visit The mixed media artist’s new collage exhibit at Eye on I opened in early June and will remain up through the end of the month. Eye on I is located at 131 N. I St., Lompoc.

While the Eye on I exhibition runs through the end of the month, Gonzalez—who also works with photography, upcycled fashion, and jewelry—has ongoing displays and works for sale at Jupiter’s Spark and South Side Coffee Co., both in Lompoc, where the artist has lived for the past seven years.

“When I first moved here, I was saying it was my quarter-life crisis. But really, it was just that I needed a big life change, a big pivot,” said Gonzalez, originally from Orange County. “I was looking for a new adventure. I had friends who had moved up here for the wine industry. … I visited a couple times and fell in love with it.

“It’s definitely a hidden gem of a town,” the artist said of Lompoc. “The art scene is still very small, but we’re looking to cultivate it and make it bigger.”

Gonzalez and Anna Look are the cofounders of The Pot Mamas, a social club that organizes various art events in Lompoc throughout the year, including the monthly Lompoc Art Walk (which occurs at various venues on every first Thursday).

The goal of the club is ultimately to create “event spaces that can bring people together and celebrate the arts,” promote support for local artists, and provide those artists an outlet “to socialize outside of Instagram” at art receptions and other festivities, Gonzalez said. “It’s important to find people like us,” the artist said. “Literally, the social club is about … ‘What do we want to do? Let’s do that.’ Let’s just throw all these parties, and that way I can go to them.” m

Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood loves clowns, especially the scary ones. Send red balloons and joker cards to

Arts Briefs is compiled by Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood. Send information to
TURN THAT CLOWN UPSIDE DOWN: A collection of clown-themed mixed media pieces is currently on display at Eye on I in Lompoc, as part of a solo showcase of works by Lompoc-based collage artist Jasmine Gonzalez.
NOSE POSE: Lompoc resident Jasmine Gonzalez (pictured) has a new collage exhibit in town focused on clowns, “because life feels like a circus lately,” the mixed media artist told the Sun PHOTO COURTESY OF ENTANGLED CO. Lompoc artist holds clown collage exhibit at Eye on I
dragged an illustration of a clown up and down a scanner to eerily manipulate its features before incorporating it into a collage piece of various images.
LONG FACE: Artist Jasmine Gonzalez
Showtime! Send
gallery, stage,
cultural festivities


• Resource Fair • Silent Auction • Spoken Word SOUL FOOD DINNER for purchase: buy your meal tix in advance @

• FREEDOM LOUNGE Hosted by History Center SLO County 696 Monterey St. SLO

• Black Art Exhibit Edna Contemporary Fine Art 967 Osos St, SLO

• WED MOVIE June 19 1:30-3:30pm THE COST OF INHERITANCE Where: Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in SLO Free (Reserve your seat):


miss: Gospel music by the legendary House of Prayer Choir and Latino Music by Juan Leandro Gutierrez and Paul Gonzalez

11am-4:30pm Mission Plaza, San Luis Obispo JOIN US AS WE CELEBRATE ART & CULTURE: A Glimpse of the Past & Present FOR ALL THINGS JUNETEENTH:

The Vibe Setters
7th Annual with NAACP SLO
GROUPS* 805-928-7731 x.4150 *12 OR MORE TICKETS 805-922-8313 | PCPA.ORG sbnature .org • June 6 - June 13, 2024 • Sun 23

Michael Showalter (The Big Sick) directs and co-writes this quirky romance based on the novel by Robinne Lee. Sparks fly between a world-famous pop singer (Nicholas Galitzine) and an art gallery owner and single mother (Anne Hathaway). But their love for one another becomes compromised with repercussions after their steamy affair becomes public (115 min.)

Editor’s note: Our regular reviewers, Glen and Anna Starkey, took this week off from Split Screen.

Caleb: Having never been to Coachella, I’m not sure how to feel about the inciting incident that kick-starts a romance between a 40-something single mom and a 20-something boy band star in The Idea of You. The happenstantial way divorced art gallery owner Solène (Anne Hathaway) ends up in fictional pop sensation Hayes’ (Nicholas Galitzine) private trailer suggests that the security fellas at Coachella are pretty chill-a. While reluctantly chaperoning her teen daughter and her friends at the music festival with VIP passes, Solène mistakes Hayes’ trailer for one of the VIP lounges and uses his restroom. Hours after watching the movie—an occasionally cringey but overall endearing romantic dramedy—I’m still hung up on the couple’s accidental meeting. Is a VIP pass all it takes to wander around Coachella aimlessly and end up in the private quarters of its headlining acts? Would anything have prevented Solène from barging into Lana Del Rey’s or Doja Cat’s trailer instead? What grabs Hayes’


What’s it rated? TV-MA

When? 2012

Where’s it showing? Max


What’s it rated? R What’s it worth, Caleb? Rent it What’s it worth, Bulbul? Rent it Where’s it showing? Amazon Prime

attention the most during his first encounter with Solène though—enough to distract him from immediately firing his bodyguards—is the fact that she doesn’t recognize him. It’s revealed earlier that the crowd at the fest isn’t short of both teens and women Solène’s age who are obsessed with Hayes’ band, August Moon (whose hardcore fans are nicknamed Moonheads), so Solène’s detachment seems to really humble him. She’s not detached from him for long, however. Bulbul: The Idea of You sets itself up as a lighthearted but steamy rom-com about a couple with an age gap, but what really makes its premise interesting is all the chatter about whether the movie is based on Harry Styles fan fiction. It is the movie adaptation of Robinne Lee’s 2017 novel of the same name. Lee even mentioned in a 2020 Vogue interview that Hayes’ character is a mashup of Prince Harry and Harry Styles. Inspiration for her book struck, she said, after watching YouTube videos of the former One Direction singer and learning that he “often dated older women.” I never cared for Styles’ music but I’m a longtime Anne Hathaway fan. I find it hard to believe enough time has passed for her to play a mom to a teenager, but Hathaway handled the single-parent role with ease and grace. Her character exercises healthy boundaries when it comes to both Hayes’ pursuit of her and even her ex-husband’s new wife’s attempts to be friends with her. Look, The Idea of You isn’t winning any Oscars, but it’s got a plot that’s fleshed out and paced well enough to make it an enjoyable

weeknight watch from the comfort of your home.

Caleb: Hathaway is great, and Galitzine seems like he had a lot of fun playing fake Harry. With its single-digit rating in mind, I went into this celebrity-falls-forcommoner tale expecting an R-rated Notting Hill, but walked away feeling like I just saw the PG-15/16 version. I can’t recall any instances of nudity, but I guess some scenes were explicit enough to nab the R, which feels like an odd reverse-engineered marketing move. It’s a mistake to alienate the tween and teen fans of Styles and One Direction, but since The Idea of You went straight to streaming on Prime, maybe the studio figured it’d be easy for those under 17 to get ahold of it one way or another.

Bulbul: I think this movie is for boy band fans who went to middle school in the late 2000s and early 2010s who regularly wrote or consumed Wattpad fan fiction. The Idea of You checks off most of the hilarious tropes that those fans were familiar with though they receive a grown-up upgrade with a 40-year-old main character. She’s beautiful but doesn’t know it, isn’t like other girls, has a tragic backstory about her romantic past, and so on. Solène and Hayes now must overcome public heat for being in an atypical relationship, with one random tabloid headline

even dubbing her “Yoko Ono 2.0.” I think the OG pre-teen and early teen fans—now in their 20s and 30s—would thoroughly enjoy The Idea of You because it gives their old amateur stories a big-budget life. It’s very much a product of the new digital age, but can we please retire the tired idea that 40-year-old women (even those who aren’t as stunning as Hathaway) are too ancient and frumpy to be attractive? m

New Times Staff Writer Bulbul Rajagopal and Calendar Editor Caleb Wiseblood filled in for Glen and Anna Starkey this week. Email your thoughts to

Being both the main actor and the creator of HBO’s show, Girls, Lena Dunham (Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood, American Horror Story) plays a 23-year-old freshly graduated college student who’s a little selfabsorbed, awkward, and obsessed with becoming a writer—but she’s too lazy to put in the work to actually write anything. She’s trying to navigate post-grad life with her three friends: the control freak with a slightly egotistical personality, Marnie, played by Allison Williams; the free-spirited hippie, Jessa, played by Jemima Kirke; and the one who wants to live the Sex and the City lifestyle while still studying at NYU, Shoshanna, played by Zosia Mamet. Navigating their way through jobs (or for some a lack thereof), boyfriends, breakups, sex, and adulthood, the six seasons of Girls is a uniquely funny yet sometimes infuriating show that gives you a bit of secondhand embarrassment. It shows a rare glimpse of how the transition from college into adulthood is a roller coaster of highs and lows that are mentally challenging, a bit awkward, and hard to stop watching. (six seasons, 30-minute episodes)

—Samantha Herrera


What’s it rated? TV-MA

When? 2024

Where’s it showing? Netflix

Netflix’s Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies, & Scandal docuseries covers the rise of a dating site for married people seeking other adults to have affairs with, the hack that exposed millions of users’ data to the public, the lives it wrecked in the process, and the dark shadows around the site’s CEO. The series is compelling, for sure.

It starts with a little too much humor about the site’s origins and the big marketing push that jumped the company into the big time. As the plot unfolded, it was hard to peel my eyes away from the disaster that I knew was coming—an inevitable train wreck that impacted 37 million people who some argue might have deserved it. But it also impacted victims who didn’t deserve it, their spouses, children, friends, and workplaces.

I learned a lot of things I didn’t know about the company, the hack, and what exactly happened in 2015. The story is wild and the company was 100 percent shady, thanks to CEO Noel Biderman. But I walked away from the docuseries feeling like it wanted me to empathize with the men who got caught trying to cheat on their spouses. Not cool, Netflix.

With a major focus on husband-and-wife Sam and Nia Rader, Christian vloggers who went viral starting in 2014,

the docuseries zeros in on how the company impacted their relationship and the fallout from Sam signing up for and using the dating site. Spoiler alert: They’re still together. This docuseries will leave your mouth hanging open in disbelief. (three approx. 50-minute episodes) m

—Camillia Lanham

LOVE AT FIRST FLIGHT: A 24-year-old boy band star (Nicholas Galitzine, left) courts a teen fan’s 40-year-old divorced mom (Anne Hathaway, right) in the Prime original movie The Idea of You.
PHOTO FROM ADULTING: (Left to right) Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet), Marnie (Allison Williams), Hannah (Lena Dunham), and Jessa (Jemima Kirke) are four friends navigating adulthood in New York City in HBO’s Girls
OUTED: Sam Rader (left), half of Christian vloggers husband-and-wife duo Sam and Nia (right), was outed as part of the Ashely Madison data breach in 2015. Netflix’s docuseries Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies, & Scandal focuses on Rader’s transgressions and how it impacted his marriage.
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of noodles

Solvang’s Ramen Kotori celebrates five years in business

There are many reasons to stop at Ramen Kotori in downtown Solvang on a hot summer day that don’t involve bowls of broth and noodles.

“I think our biggest hurdle during summertime is people walking by and thinking we only have ramen,” the shop’s co-founder and co-owner, Francisco Velazquez, told the Sun

When it’s warm out, the restaurateur recommends pairing one of Ramen Kotori’s sashimi dishes with wine by the glass from Stolpman Vineyards or another local vintner featured on the venue’s wine list. Husband-and-wife duo Francisco and Erica Velazquez—who first met while both working as chefs at The Marine Room in San Diego—opened Ramen Kotori during the spring of 2019 and recently celebrated the shop’s fifth anniversary.

“We’re good at working, but we suck at parties,” Erica admitted with a laugh.

Ramen Kotori in Solvang is open for patio dining and takeout Wednesdays through Sundays, from noon to 3 p.m. and 4:30 to 8 p.m. Call (805) 691-9672 or visit ramenkotori. com for more info. The restaurant is located at 1618 Copenhagen Drive, Solvang.

Back in March, the couple commemorated the milestone during a small pizza get-together with their staff.

Throughout their careers, Erica and Francisco have both worked as chefs and managers for others at various spots across California, while Ramen Kotori marked their first venture as restaurant owners.

“After five years, I’m starting to get the hang of it. I feel like we are getting better every year. … It really took a whole year to figure out what we were doing. It was pretty brutal,” said Francisco, whose business persevered during the pandemic with support from longstanding staff members and faithful customers. “The reason we’re still here is because of the community.

Before dating, Francisco and Erica bonded over their love of ramen outside of work hours, the couple revealed.

“As friends, one of the first things we ever made together was actually ramen,” said Erica, born and raised in Kyoto, Japan.

SUPER BOWL: The shoyu ramen at Ramen Kotori in Solvang is served with a choice pork belly, spicy ground chicken, pork shoulder, marinated tofu, or fried chicken.
EATS continued page 26 Eats
CRUDO KUDOS: Ramen Kotori co-owner and co-founder Erica Velazquez serves an appetizing crudo assortment at the venue, which opened in downtown Solvang in 2019.
Share tasty tips! Send tidbits on everything food and drink to MUSIC FLAVOR/EATS INFO CALENDAR OPINION NEWS STROKES ARTS
Shoyu and tell
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Ramen Kotori

During their relationship, Erica and Francisco have lived and worked in both Southern and Northern California, before picking the literal middle ground between the two regions to open Ramen Kotori. Solvang is also Francisco’s hometown, which he described as akin to Disneyland during holiday seasons due to the tourism it attracts.

One of Francisco’s favorite memories so far during the restaurant’s run was seeing a group of bystanders stop and stare at a unique early morning delivery made to the venue. It was a whole bluefin tuna, courtesy of Sea Stephanie Fish—one of Ramen Kotori’s fish suppliers.

Sea Stephanie Fish delivers various seafoods to the restaurant on a regular basis, but getting the freshly caught whole bluefin tuna—which weighed 115 to 125 pounds—is a seasonal occurrence. The Velazquez couple expects the next delivery of this kind sometime this June.

“There’s just no comparison to getting a whole fish,” said Francisco, who described the length of the tuna as taking up three of Ramen Kotori’s patio tables. “We’ll break it down within an hour, and scrape it, and try it, and it’s like the best fish you’ve ever had.”

While Ramen Kotori has a mainstay menu that’s pretty concrete, there’s also a chalkboard

at the shop displaying various rotating specials as they come and go. This is where patrons will find some upcoming dishes that will revolve around the anticipated bluefin. Following the restaurant on social media is another way to find out about these specials in advance. Many of the shop’s ongoing offerings, including hand rolls and poke dishes, center on locally sourced seafood— including sea urchin and oysters—and fresh produce the couple finds at the weekly Solvang Farmers Market. As for the star attraction found in the restaurant’s namesake, the couple’s personal favorite of their ramen selections is their shoyu ramen, because of its light soy sauce broth.

“That’s kind of like our main ramen here. It’s really easy to eat. … [It’s] something you can eat every day,” Francisco said. “It’s not going to weigh you down; it’s not super heavy.

“But there is joy in eating a tonkotsu—super rich with pork belly in it,” Francisco added, commenting on the cloudier, thicker broth of a hearty, sweater-weather tonkotsu. “[It’s] great when it’s chilly outside.” m

Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood wouldn’t mind lounging in a hot tub full of ramen. Send comments to

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