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PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Santa Ynez Valley’s Annual ‘Scarecrow Fest’: Oct. 10-Nov. 10, 2014

Santa Ynez Valley “Scarecrow Fest” Kicks off October 10, 2014; Runs through November 10, 2014

— Ballard, Buellton, Los Alamos, Los Olivos, Santa Ynez and Solvang Will All Get in on The Game, as Annual “Scarecrow Fest and Contest” Goes Valley-Wide for Second Year —

Wednesday, September 24, 2014 – Santa Ynez Valley, CA – The Santa Ynez Valley, home to Santa Barbara wine country on California’s Central Coast, will usher in the fall season as it kicks off its Annual Santa Ynez Valley (SYV) Scarecrow Fest and Contest on Friday, October 10, 2014, coinciding with the start of Santa Barbara Wine Country’s “Celebration of Harvest Weekend” event. This year’s Scarecrow Fest, sponsored in part by Visit Santa Ynez Valley, will for the second time, include the “SYV” communities of Ballard, Buellton, Los Alamos, Los Olivos, Santa Ynez, and the town that started the original Scarecrow Fest, Solvang. The Santa Ynez Valley Scarecrow Fest will run through November 10, 2014.

During the month-long festival, visitors and SYV locals are encouraged to play, stay and enjoy the scarecrow sights and many events scheduled throughout the Scarecrow Fest stretch. The Valley will boast more than 200 scarecrows this year, on which the public is invited to judge and vote for their favorites in the “field”.

The SYV Scarecrows, crafted by local businesses, individuals and school organizations, will be showcased throughout the Santa Ynez Valley in the five main communities of Solvang, Santa Ynez, Los Olivos, Los Alamos and Buellton. The winning scarecrows from each town will be eligible for the “2014 Harvest Cup: Best in the Valley” title and trophy, the winner of which will be announced on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at Valley Pets in Buellton (225 McMurray Road) – the 2013 “Harvest Cup” winner and trophy holder.

The Valley’s first Scarecrow Fest was held in Solvang, in 2010, initiated by the Solvang Third Wednesday committee led by Susan Williams and Sue Moualim. The original contest was created to drive business to each of the participating companies, storefronts, merchants and organizations, as well as to the town and the surrounding Santa Ynez Valley locales, in general. In the contest’s first year, 60 Solvang businesses joined in the fun and by 2012, more than 100 businesses were participating in the annual contest – which received a count of 1,200+ public judging ballots. Past years’ Scarecrow Fests have received nationwide publicity, drawing increased visitor activity to the Santa Ynez Valley.

During Solvang’s Fifth Annual Scarecrow Fest (October 10 - November 10, 2014), locals, tourists and area merchants will vote via ballot boxes scattered about the City, for scarecrow winners in six different categories: Best Scarecrow in Motion, Best Use of Recycled Materials, Best Use of a Business Theme, Most Danish, Spookiest, and Most Humorous. Ballots will be available at the Solvang Visitors Center and at select Solvang businesses, and will feature maps to direct voters to each of the contest’s scarecrows. In addition to the six category winners determined by public voting, a panel of anonymous judges will award a “Best Scarecrow” title to an overall City of Solvang winner, which will go on to compete for the “2014 Harvest Cup”. And in an effort to further enhance the community’s fall “spirit”, this year’s Solvang Scarecrow Fest will, for the first time, also be open to residential participants.

The Santa Ynez Chamber, along with local businesses, is proudly sponsoring the Second Annual “Santa Ynez Scarecrow Village”, which will “live” in the Santa Ynez Valley Historical Museum (3596 Sagunto Street) from October 15 - October 31, 2014. This year’s Scarecrow Village will take on a Hollywood form as the “Santa Ynez Village Theater” – complete with a multitude of movie-themed scarecrows, or “Scare-lebrities” – and will be comprised of scarecrows created by various classrooms throughout the Valley, all sponsored by Santa Ynez businesses. During the Santa Ynez Halloween Street Faire on October 31 (5:30 PM-8:30 PM), the Santa Ynez scarecrows will be silently auctioned off to visitors and locals with all proceeds benefiting the participating classrooms. The “Village” scarecrow that raises the most money will be entered into the “2014 Harvest Cup” competition.

This year’s Santa Ynez Scarecrow Fest will also be open to all Santa Ynez merchants, who will post their own “Scare-lebrity” scarecrows in front of their businesses, from October 10 to November 10, 2014.

In the wine-drenched village of Los Olivos, approximately 40 businesses are participating in the second annual Valley-wide Scarecrow Fest. The Los Olivos Scarecrow Fest, organized by the Los Olivos Business Organization, starts October 10, 2014, when visitors and residents are welcome to pick up Scarecrow voting ballots at participating businesses – or download ballots from www.losolivosca.com – to vote on their favorite scarecrows in the following categories: Best Los Olivos Scarecrow, Most Humorous, Spookiest, Best Business Theme, Best Natural Materials, and Best Traditional. Completed ballots may be turned in to any of the participating businesses; the overall Los Olivos scarecrow winner will represent the town in the quest for the “2014 Harvest Cup” trophy.

In the ‘Old West with a new twist’ community of Los Alamos, the 2014 Scarecrow Fest will take on a bit of a different shape: “Birds in Los Alamos” will have the town playing host to the “scared crows” fleeing from the Solvang, Santa Ynez, Los Olivos, Buellton and Ballard scarecrows. The C Gallery, along with other Los Alamos shops and businesses, will “bring on the birds”, festooning themselves inside and out with crow-like “faux” birds. One particular highlight of Los Alamos’ version of this year’s Scarecrow Fest, is The C Gallery’s pop-up art show, “All Kinds of Black Birds”, which will feature “Black Birds”-themed art in all sorts of mediums. “All Kinds of Black Birds” will have an opening reception on Saturday, October 18, 2014, 5:00 PM-7:00 PM, during the Los Alamos Third Saturday Evening Stroll. The pop-up art show opens to the public on Thursday, October 16 and closes on Sunday, October 19 at 3:00 PM.

And last but certainly not least, the Buellton Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau is sponsoring the second Buellton Scarecrow Fest. Maps pinpointing scarecrow locations along with ballots and ballot boxes, will be available at the Buellton Visitor Information Center (597 Ave of Flags, Unit 101) and at participating businesses throughout the City. Buellton’s scarecrows will be judged – starting October 10, 2014 – by locals, tourists and merchants, as well as a panel of judges, in the following categories: Best Use of Natural Materials, Most Humorous, Best Use of Business Theme, and Spookiest. Buellton’s “Best Scarecrow” will represent the City in the Valley-wide contest, as the town trying to keep its current hold on the coveted “Harvest Cup”.

More information about this year’s Santa Ynez Valley Scarecrow Fest is available at www.syvscarecrows.com, as well as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, at facebook.com/SYVScarecrowFest, twitter.com/SYVscarecrows and instagram.com/syvscarecrows. Scarecrow voters and visitors are also encouraged to use the hashtag #syvscarecrows in all on-line discussions of the SYV Scarecrow Fest.

Questions about the 2014 Santa Ynez Valley Scarecrow Fest plans, or requests for photos, may be directed to Anna Ferguson-Sparks, Stiletto Marketing, at 1.877.327.2656 or info@stilettomarketing.com.

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