Summer Solstice Poster & T-Shirt Contest

Heroes photo, courtesy Santa Barbara Summer Solstice.

Heroes photo, courtesy Santa Barbara Summer Solstice.

The 2018 Summer Solstice Parade & Festival theme is HEROES, which is certainly an apt choice for our community right now.

The organizers state, “we are so grateful and beyond moved by our local heroes and all of the beauty that has been shown by hundreds of emergency professionals and firefighters who have come to Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties to fight the Thomas Fire that has wreaked havoc on our area. Now with the recent mudslides in Montecito we are again finding heroes everywhere: in our neighbors, our community businesses and growing within ourselves.”

The theme was selected from more than 100 suggestions.

Organizers are now accepting artwork submissions for the 2018 Poster & T-shirt Contest. The deadline for submissions is Thursday, February 15, at 5 p.m.

The artist selected will win a $500 prize.

Submit up to three images (jpeg format, 72 dpi) by email, with titles, to soladmin@solsticeparade.com.

Don’t forget to include your name, address and phone number, as well as the email headline “2018 Poster & T-shirt Contest.”

Works are encouraged to support the Solstice 2018 theme: “Heroes,” though all artwork submitted will be considered.

The Summer Solstice Festival is June 22-24 and the parade is June 23. For more information, visit solsticeparade.com.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on February 2, 2018.

 

Cocktail Corner: Cocktails for a Cause

A spirited toast to all things alcoholic!  By Leslie Dinaberg

Community Cocktail for a Cause: Glitz, Glam & Get Down

Their New Year’s festivities may have been cancelled, but the show must go on, so The Kimpton Canary Hotel with Finch & Fork Restaurant are hosting a 2018 Community Cocktail for a Cause: Glitz, Glam & Get Down with DJ Darla Bea (winner of “Best Event DJ” for 2016 and 2017) getting everyone out on the dance floor.

“Let’s celebrate and welcome in 2018, and help provide support to those affected in the community by the Thomas Fire,” say the organizers.

The rooftop party will be on January 20, from  7-11 p.m., with a portion of proceeds benefiting United Way of Santa Barbara.

 2018 Community Cocktail for a Cause: Glitz, Glam & Get Down at the Canary, courtesy photo.

2018 Community Cocktail for a Cause: Glitz, Glam & Get Down at the Canary, courtesy photo.

There will also be a community cocktail competition featuring popular local cocktail bar competitors, with the winner giving raffle proceeds to the charity of their choice, benefitting Thomas Fire affected community members.

Tickets for the cocktail party are $120 amount with a portion of proceeds to United Way of Santa Barbara. That includes sweet treats from Finch & Fork Restaurant, an end of night champagne toast to the community, and a cash bar. 

Tickets: https://nightout.com/events/community-cocktail-thomas-fire/tickets

Cheers! Click here for more cocktail corner columns.

Leslie Dinaberg

When she’s not busy working as the editor of Santa Barbara SEASONS, Cocktail Corner author Leslie Dinaberg writes magazine articles, newspaper columns and grocery lists. When it comes to cocktails, Leslie considers herself a “goal-oriented drinker.”

 Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on January 12, 2018.

Celebrate Kids Helping Kids’ 10th Anniversary

NeedtoBreathe (l) and Andy Grammer return to perform at the 10th Annual Kids Helping Kids benefit concert. Courtesy photos.

NeedtoBreathe (l) and Andy Grammer return to perform at the 10th Annual Kids Helping Kids benefit concert. Courtesy photos.

Kids Helping Kids celebrates its 10th Anniversary at the beautiful Granada Theatre (1214 State St.) January 12-13 with performances by NeedtoBreathe and Andy Grammer.

Andy Grammer performs a benefit show for Kids Helping Kids on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Granada Theatre. Courtesy photo.

Andy Grammer performs a benefit show for Kids Helping Kids on Friday, Jan. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Granada Theatre. Courtesy photo.

Kids Helping Kids is an entirely student-run nonprofit organization lead by the students in the Advanced Placement Economics classes at San Marcos High School. The group works  to help children in need both locally and globally and has raised an amazing $2.5 million to date.

NeedtoBreathe performs a benefit show for Kids Helping Kids on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. at the Granada Theatre. Courtesy photo.

NeedtoBreathe performs a benefit show for Kids Helping Kids on Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. at the Granada Theatre. Courtesy photo.

The annual benefit concert looks back on the legacy built by the students of San Marcos and the support of our community, bringing back two of the past favorite performers, Andy Grammer (Friday, Jan. 12 at 7 p.m.) and NeedtoBreathe (Saturday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m.).

Past artists who have performed at Kids Helping Kids benefit concerts include:

  • Toad the Wet Sprocket and Tyrone Wells (2009),
  • Five for Fighting (2010),
  • Mat Kearney and Tyrone Wells (2011),
  • Sara Bareilles and Tyrone Wells (2012),
  • Switchfoot and Brad Corrigan from Dispatch (2013),
  • Andy Grammer and Tim Lopez from Plain White T’s (2014),
  • Ingrid Michaelson and Jon McLaughlin (2015),
  • NeedtoBreathe and Johnnyswim (2016),
  • and Gavin DeGraw and Parachute (2017).

In addition to the local chapter, the Kids Helping Kids model to is now in place at two other high schools in Sacramento and Dana Hills, California.

For more information click here, and to purchase tickets, visit the Granada website.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on January 6, 2018.

SBIFF Announces Virtuosos Award Winners

Santa Barbara International Film Festival Virtuosos Award—honoring (clockwise from top left) Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman),
Hong Chau (Downsizing),
 Mary J. Blige (Mudbound),
Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name), Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick),
and John Boyega (Detroit)—takes place on Saturday, February 3, at 8 p.m. at the Arlington Theatre. Courtesy photos.

Santa Barbara International Film Festival Virtuosos Award—honoring (clockwise from top left) Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman),
Hong Chau (Downsizing),
 Mary J. Blige (Mudbound),
Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name), Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick),
and John Boyega (Detroit)—takes place on Saturday, February 3, at 8 p.m. at the Arlington Theatre. Courtesy photos.

Santa Barbara International Film Festival Virtuosos Award will once again honor many of the most notable performances in Hollywood this year. The award, presented by UGG, takes place on February 3 at the Arlington Theatre.

“2017 has seen a variety of breakout performances,” states Roger Durling, Executive Director of SBIFF. “We are thrilled to celebrate this diverse group of actors who have earned their place as some of the most talented individuals working in the industry today.”

The group will be recognized for their breakthrough roles in 2017 and careers thus far. Daniel Kaluuya gives a star-making performance as the unsuspecting yet resourceful Chris Washington in the speculative thriller Get Out. Bringing to life the enduringly popular comic book character of the same name, Gal Gadot balances formidable prowess and a genuine sense of hope in her role in this summer’s critically praised, conversation-changing Wonder Woman. Hong Chau delivers an inspiring performance in the social satire Downsizing, in which she brings humor and compassion to the role of Ngoc Lan Tran. In Detroit, John Boyega gives a captivating turn as Melvin Dismukes, a security guard who is falsely accused of killing three men on one of the most horrific nights in American history. Based on a true story that he co-wrote, Kumail Nanjiani brings comedy, pathos, and dramatic stakes to The Big Sick as a man whose girlfriend falls into a mysterious coma. In Mudbound, renowned singer/songwriter Mary J. Blige delivers a powerful and solemn turn as Florence Jackson, a mother struggling to maintain land in 1940s Mississippi. In Call Me By Your Name, Timothée Chalamet gives a brilliant and heartfelt performance as Elio, a teenage boy who begins a relationship with his father’s assistant.

Prior recipients for the award include Dev Patel, Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Ruth Negga, Alicia Vikander, Rosamund Pike, J.K. Simmons, Eddie Redmayne, Quvenzhane Wallis, Rooney Mara, Melissa McCarthy, Andrew Garfield, John Hawkes, Hailee Steinfeld, Jacki Weaver, Carey Mulligan, Saoirse Ronan, Gabourey Sidibe, Casey Affleck, Marion Cotillard, Viola Davis, Sally Hawkins, Richard Jenkins, Melissa Leo, Ellen Page, Amy Ryan, Michael Shannon, Brie Larson, Jared Leto and June Squibb.

For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on December 20, 2017.

SBIFF’s Maltin Modern Master Award to Honor Gary Oldman

Gary Oldman will receive the Maltin Modern Master Award from Santa Barbara International Film Festival on February 2, courtesy photos.

Gary Oldman will receive the Maltin Modern Master Award from Santa Barbara International Film Festival on February 2, courtesy photos.

Gary Oldman, who is getting critical acclaim and Oscar buzz for his role as British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour, is set to receive the Maltin Modern Master Award at the 33rd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival.  Oldman will be honored for his longstanding contributions to the film industry and Leonard Maltin, for whom the award was recently renamed after, will return for his 27th year to moderate the evening. The event takes place on Friday, February 2, at the Arlington Theatre.

“Gary Oldman has dazzled audiences for decades with an array of brilliant performances,” states Maltin. “With Darkest Hour, he has once again proven that he is a force to be reckoned with, and a true master of his craft.

The film takes place during the early days of World War II, as the fate of Western Europe hangs on the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Oldman), who must decide whether to negotiate with Hitler, or fight on against incredible odds. Directed by Joe Wright from a screenplay by Anthony McCarten, the film also stars Ben Mendelsohn, Kristin Scott Thomas, Lily James and Stephen Dillane.

The Modern Master Award was established in 1995 and is the highest accolade presented by SBIFF.  Created to honor an individual who has enriched our culture through accomplishments in the motion picture industry, it was re-named the Maltin Modern Master Award in 2015 in honor of long-time SBIFF moderator and renowned film critic Leonard Maltin.  Past recipients include Denzel Washington, Michael Keaton, Bruce Dern, Ben Affleck, Christopher Plummer, Christopher Nolan, James Cameron, Clint Eastwood, Cate Blanchett, Will Smith, George Clooney and Peter Jackson.

For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on December 19, 2017.

 

LUX LED Lighting Partners With Unite to Light for Holiday Season

Courtesy photo.

Courtesy photo.

In the spirit of the holiday season, two Santa Barbara-based companies have partnered for a holiday giving campaign. LUX LED Lighting is teaming up with Unite To Light—a nonprofit organization that provides portable, solar-powered lamps to people living without electricity—to do some good this holiday season.  

With every purchase of a LUX LED Lighting lamp, the company will donate a solar lamp for Unite To Light. Whether from disaster, lack of infrastructure, or inability to pay, Unite to Light aims to bring light to those who would otherwise live in darkness. 

Courtesy photo.

Courtesy photo.

“1.2 billion people are currently without electricity, including many in our own backyard who have been affected by the recent hurricanes and wildfires,” says Roger Edgar, CEO of LUX LED Lighting. “Our team was motivated by Unite to Light’s dedication to providing an effective solution to those living in darkness, and we are proud to contribute to that mission.”

The giving campaign will kick off on November 24,  in conjunction with a 30% site-wide Black Friday discount that will be available on LUX LED Lighting’s website. The campaign will extend through December 26, providing ample opportunity for consumers to join the charitable mission. Products can be purchased by going to www.store.luxledlights.com.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on November 21, 2017.

Dream Foundation Summer Dream Fashion Show

Aqualillies entertain at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Aqualillies entertain at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Dream Foundation—the Santa Barbara-based nonprofit is the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults—recently hosted its third annual Summer Dream fundraiser to benefit Dreamers ages 18 to 40. The stylish event included a fashion show, with designs from A Tropical Affair, Calypso St. Barth, K. Frank, Lolë, Miller’s Oath, UGG and local designers Catherine Gee and Danielle Rocha of Rocha Swim.

A model at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

A model at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

“Summer Dream is the perfect opportunity to introduce and educate our local community about Dream Foundation’s mission, what the future holds, and about the diverse Dreamers and Dreams that the organization serves,” says Dream Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer Kisa Heyer. “Many are surprised to learn how many Dreamers are under the age of 40 and how seemingly simple yet incredibly prolific their Dreams can be.”

A model at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

A model at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

In addition to the fashion show, the fundraiser included performances by local singer/songwriter, Gabe Reali, DJ Qu1z0, and synchronized swimmers, Aqualillies.

Gabe Reali performs at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Gabe Reali performs at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Also on the menu was decadent food and drink from Heat Culinary, Patròn Tequila, Sun Potion, Summerland Winery, Topa Topa, Rori’s Artisanal Creamery and Green Star Coffee.

Held at the home of Ursula & Pat Nesbitt, additional guests included Daryl & John Stegall, Eva Guerrand-Hermès, Mireille Noone, Jelinda DeVorzon, Michelle Ebbin, Belle & Daniel Cohen, Jim Nigro, Belle Cohen, Summer Dream emcee and KEYT Channel 3’s Meteorologist, Alan Rose, second and third annual Summer Dream Committee Chair Arlene Montesano, and Dream Foundation board members Justine Roddick, Luke Ebbin and Board Chair Kenny Slaught, among others.

Arlene Montesano (Summer Dream Event Chair), Tom Parker, Karla Blackwell and Soogie and Don Kang (Golden Sponsors) at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Arlene Montesano (Summer Dream Event Chair), Tom Parker, Karla Blackwell and Soogie and Don Kang (Golden Sponsors) at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

“Dream Foundation believes that everyone deserves to have their final days filled with inspiration, comfort and closure. Receiving no state or federal funding, the organization and its Dreamers rely solely on private donations. One hundred percent of the proceeds of Summer Dream will be allocated to fulfill the Dreams of terminally-ill young adults, 18-40 years old,” say the organizers.

Luke Ebbin (Dream Foundation Board Vice Chair), Michelle Ebbin, & Justine Roddick (Dream Foundation Board Member), photo by Kelly Sweda Photography.

Luke Ebbin (Dream Foundation Board Vice Chair), Michelle Ebbin, & Justine Roddick (Dream Foundation Board Member), photo by Kelly Sweda Photography.

Over the past two decades, Dream Foundation has served more than 25,000 Dreams to terminally-ill adults, and they have never turned down a qualified Dream applicant.For more information about Dream Foundation, visit DreamFoundation.org.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on June 26, 2107.

Help Secure Isla Vista Youth Projects Forever

Courtesy Isla Vista Youth Projects.

Courtesy Isla Vista Youth Projects.

I had the opportunity to visit the Isla Vista Youth Projects Children’s Center site yesterday on a Women’s Fund site visit and was so impressed by what I saw. For the 2015-16 grant cycle, the Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara granted them $75,000 to help them get one step closer to completing the purchase of the Children’s Center, ensuring that 160 low-income child care spaces remain available.

Coincidentally, Isla Vista Youth Projects (IVYP) recently launched a campaign to raise $300,000 to qualify for $300,000 in matching funds to purchase their building in Isla Vista and successfully close Phase I of their capital campaign. Along with the Children’s Center,  Isla Vista Youth Projects serves over 2000 children and families annually providing high quality childcare, education and activities for children 0 – 5 years old.

The IV Youth Projects team is racing to meet this matching fund offer by the end of 2017. To date, IVYP has already raised over $1 million for this capital campaign and a successful $300k for $300k match campaign will close out Phase I of their capital campaign.

“For over 30 years, the Isla Vista Youth Projects has offered the children of Goleta and Isla Vista a safe, healthy and vibrant place to spend their days while their parents were hard at work. This campaign ensures that we can continue to offer this service to thousands of children in the future without the threat of losing our treasured home,” says IVYP Executive Director LuAnn Miller.

“The cost of real estate and skyrocketing rents are direct threats to community serving organizations across the County of Santa Barbara and IV Youth Projects is no different. We have a rare opportunity to match every dollar raised and secure our home forever.” says IVYP Campaign Committee member Dr. Yonie Harris.

IVYP’s capital campaign has already secured support from the likes of the Santa Barbara Foundation, Hutton Parker Foundation, Towbes Group, DiPaola Family Foundation, Kennedy Family, Orfalea Foundation, Mosher Foundation, Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara, Wolfe Family, Casey Family, Cox Communications and more.
For more information on the campaign or how to donate, please, go to www.ivyp.org.

—Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on December 8, 2016.

 

CALM at Heart: Awakening

CALM supporters stand up loud and proud to give financial support to the nonprofit at this week's luncheon. Photo by Leslie Dinaberg.

CALM supporters stand up loud and proud to give financial support to the nonprofit at this week’s luncheon. Photo by Leslie Dinaberg.

A fun afternoon to celebrate and reflect on the healing work of CALM was just what the doctor ordered this week.

CALM—which is an acronym for Child Abuse Listening Mediation—takes on the critical mission to prevent, assess, and treat child abuse in Santa Barbara County. The nonprofit provides comprehensive services for children, families and adults, and has done so since its inception in 1970.

Celebrating this organization at the beautiful Coral Casino was a heartwarming affair. K-LITE’s Catherine Remak served as master of ceremonies, introducing a new video highlighting the organization’s work throughout the county, with offices in Santa Barbara, Santa Maria and Lompoc providing prevention and early intervention programs, treatment programs and clinicians who work closely with individuals, families, teachers, administrators and law enforcement.

The theme was an afternoon of mindfulness, and it truly was.

Images of CALM at Heart: Awakening event at the Coral Casino. Photo by Leslie Dinaberg.

Images of CALM at Heart: Awakening event at the Coral Casino. Photo by Leslie Dinaberg.

CALM staff members spoke from personal experience about their prevention programs across Santa Barbara County help parents and children heal from their traumatic pasts. CALM Chief Executive Officer Alana Walczak gave a moving presentation about the importance of being there and being leaders for our community’s most vulnerable people. Jennifer Freed, PhD, co-founder of AHA! (a local nonprofit committed to transforming the world by empowering teens to create peaceful and connected communities), was the keynote speaker, focusing on mindfulness practices.

CALM was founded in 1970 to reach stressed parents before they hurt their children. CALM continues to be the only nonprofit agency in Santa Barbara County focusing solely on preventing, assessing, and treating child abuse and family violence through comprehensive, cutting-edge programs. CALM offers children, families, and adults a safe, non-judgmental, caring, and strength-based environment to heal and increase family well being. For more information about all of CALM’s services, please call 805/965-2376, or visit http://calm4kids.org.

—Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on November 11, 2016.

MCASB LAUNCHES 2016 DREAM HOME RAFFLE

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

Are you dreaming of a beautiful Santa Barbara home with city and ocean views? Here’s your chance to win that dream house, and support Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB) at the same time!

The MCASB Dream Home Raffle has been the primary fundraiser for the Museum of Contemporary Art for over a decade.  This entrepreneurial way to fundraise has been a successful way to bring free arts programming, world-class exhibitions, and contemporary art to the Central Coast.

This year, the grand prize is a 4000+ square foot home that sits on three acres and has three bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a separate studio unit with an office. From city lights to the Pacific coastline to the Channel Islands, the MCASB Dream Home offers a luxurious way to experience the best of Santa Barbara. In addition, more than 2,500 prizes are available throughout the raffle, offering participants a 1 in 20 chance to win.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

Since the raffle began in 2005, it has raised over $6 million, helping host over 100,000 visitors, directly funding free arts programming, and bringing world-class exhibitions to Central Coast audiences and beyond.  In just the last year, MCASB raffles have impacted community members.

In addition to winning the dream home or a $3 million cash prize, there are numerous options for those who have a winning ticket, including luxury cars, vacations, MacBook Air, cash prizes and more.  For a complete list of prizes, visit SBHomeRaffle.com.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

Tickets must be purchased by October 21. During the raffle, two early-bird drawings will be held. The grand prize drawing is November 11. Winners will be announced on SBHomeRaffle.com.

 

To enter the Raffle, call 888/402-9222 or go toSBHomeRaffle.com. and register online. Ticket purchasers must be 18 years or older, have U.S. residency and meet other requirements in the Rules and Regulations as specified at SBHomeRaffle.com.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

MCA Santa Barbara Dream Home Raffle, courtesy photo.

MCASB is a nonprofit, non-collecting museum dedicated to the exhibition, education, and cultivation of the arts of our time. Formerly Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF), MCASB is the premier venue for contemporary art between Los Angeles and San Francisco. MCASB is located at the Paseo Nuevo Shopping Center Upper Arts Terrace downtown. Exhibitions are also on view at MCASB Satellite @ Hotel Indigo Santa Barbara at 121 State St.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons Magazine on September 1, 2016.