This year’s Fiesta Ranchera was celebrated — with frequent exclamations of “¡Viva la Fiesta!” and “¡Viva la familia!” — last Thursday night at Rancho La Patera in Goleta.

Co-hosted by Old Spanish Days and the Goleta Valley Historical Society (both of which benefited from the night’s proceeds), the fifth annual event drew about 800 attendees, said Dacia Harwood, the events coordinator for the Goleta Valley Historical Society.

With the music of Tony Ybarra and a Spanish guitar trio playing in the background, people — many of whom were decked out in Spanish and western wear — sampled foods savory and sweet from (among other vendors) Blush Restaurant and Lounge, Marmalade Café, SBB Gourmet Catering, Anna’s Bakery, and the Bacara Resort and Spa. There was also a tequila-tasting bar courtesy of Tres Agaves, beer from Hollister Brewery, and wine from Arthur Earl, Alexander & Wayne, Carina Cellars, and Consilience.

Although Camarillo resident Rebecca White “didn’t know what to expect” from her first foray into Fiesta Ranchera, she said that she had a good time. “The music was the draw,” she said.

Frances Pieszen, who lives near Ranch la Patera, had also never attended the event before, but was “glad” she did, saying, “I was out walking, and I decided to stop over.”

The party, which was sponsored by companies such as Cox Communications, MarBorg Industries, and Bartlett, Pringle & Wolf, also featured performances by the Spirit and Junior Spirits of Fiesta and music from Area 51. And the fact that the Goleta City Council recently deemed June 21 to be Fiesta Ranchera Day in the Goodland added something special to the celebration.

“It gets better and better every single year,” said Ricardo Castellanos, this year’s El Presidente. “It’s about all of the longtime Santa Barbara and Goleta families that are coming together and celebrating as one family.”


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