The Water Wars Continue

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SEEN (Continued from page 15) Teri Jory and Seth Geiger both honorees and donors to the ballet

five days a week and have opportunities to perform and tour with the professional company. They also have their own fully produced performance at the end of the season. This was the brainstorm of two of tonight’s honorees – Teri Jory and Seth Geiger receiving the Visionary Award. It began four years ago with eight girls. Now there are 26 and a wait list. The participants come from all over the country and even the world. Longtime supporter Chris Lancashire was honored. As board president Lynn Stokes-Pena said, “His generous contributions help sustain many of the groups that make our community unique – Anacapa School, The Granada, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and our own State Street Ballet, to name a few. As Chris commented, “The real honorees of the evening are the dancers. They can stand shoulder to shoulder with all the great companies.” Chris offered up a toast to the late Leni Fe Bland, who gave so much to the ballet. Geoff Green had everyone waving their bid paddles often for the live auction with items all the way from Santa Barbara to New York and a river trip on the Seine to Normandy. It raised many thousands for the group. Arlyn Goldsby reminded us that our troupe had performed in 27 cities in China last year and the Chinese government paid for it. Leila Drake told

us, “Pointe shoes cost $100 a pair and last only a couple of weeks.” Hence, the need for the shoe auction. Besides many generous donations Sara Miller McCune donated $5,000. State Street Ballet founder (22 years) and artistic director Rodney Gustafson hoped the audience would attend “An American Tango” on Saturday, October 22, at the Granada Theatre. It’s been called “an entertaining, theatrical tour-de-force.” Event producers were Jonatha King and Lance Jones from King Communications. Dinner music was by Bent Myggen on double keyboards and guitars. It’s very special for a community our size to be able to support a ballet company. If you’d like to help in any way, call (805) 845-1432 for more information.

Rinaldo Brutoco with Cathy Murrillo from city council and Lalla Brutoco at the New Beginnings fundraiser

Changing Lives

New Beginnings Counseling Center 2016 Changing Lives Gala at the El Encanto Hotel was in celebration of “Community Champions” Gary and Mary Becker. After cocktails on the veranda with music by Renee Hamaty on piano, dinner was served. Executive director Kristine Schwarz welcomed everyone and wants everyone to know what New Beginnings does. “It is a non-profit mental health

GlOBAl lATin cuiSinE

GlOBAl lATin cuiSinE “let’s celebrate life” GlOBAl lATin cuiSinE “let’s celebrate life”

“let’s celebrate life”

30 E. ORTEGA • OvEjABlAncASB.cOM • 963-1012 13 – 20 October 2016

New Beginnings Safe parking coordinator Francie Monk, development coordinator Gabriella Forrester, board president Diane Pannkuk, and executive director Kristine Schwarz

New Beginnings honoree Mary Becker with her granddaughter Tallulah Downs

center that provides psychological counseling and supportive services to low-income families and individuals in Santa Barbara.” They offer affordable counseling, shelter, case management, and education to provide their clients with the ability to lead healthy and productive lives. Lisa Moore, vice president of clinical service for Cottage Health, told us, “There is no more deserving couple to honor than Mary and Gary Becker. Their bios are long, but a few highlights are that Gary practiced law for more than 40 years in Indiana and Kentucky. He sold the Becker Law Office in 2004 and retired here. As Kristine said, “Gary invested in our Safe Parking Program several years ago when the program’s funding was uncertain.

The October sun filled the world with mellow warmth. – Elizabeth George Speare

Mary was a financial planner and investment advisor for 15 years. She also produced a documentary film titled Original Child Bomb. Both Mary and Gary joined the Immaculate Heart Community and strongly support La Casa de Maria Retreat and Conference Center. And the list goes on. Ciara Murray-Young presented the Community Champions Awards to Mary. Sadly, Gary was ill and couldn’t attend. The staff wanted to thank them both for their continuous dedication to improving and growing New Beginning’s programs and services. Their drive and commitment uplifts others touching the lives of many. Also speaking was Glenn Bacheller, president of Social Venture Partners. Board chair Diane Pannkuk gave closing remarks. One of my favorite New Beginnings programs is Safe Parking, which takes 115 vehicles off the streets overnight, placing them in designated spaces in 20 city, county, church, nonprofit agency, and industrial sites in Santa Barbara and Goleta. It is a $270,000 program that also furnishes bathrooms and spot monitoring. They are the working poor trying to lift themselves up from poverty. New Beginnings has placed 47 folks in homes in the last nine months. For more information about all New Beginnings does, call Gabriella Forrester, development coordinator, at 963-7777, ext. 112. •MJ MONTECITO JOURNAL