For the first time in its nearly 150-year history, Santa Barbara High School ― one of the oldest schools in California ― is hosting an All Dons Reunion on Saturday, October 5, that’s expected to draw thousands of alumni to its Anapamu Street campus. “It’s going to be a great day,” said organizer Tim Putz, class of ’63. “We’re really excited.”

Things kick off at 11 a.m. and go until 4 p.m. The first 2,000 people through the doors will get a souvenir gift. Tickets are $20-$45, and the proceeds will go to scholarships and the school’s Classroom Assistance Program, or CAP, a general fund used by teachers to offset shortfalls in their classroom budgets. 

Putz said the day will include campus tours, food trucks, and live music. And, of course, plenty of photos and memorabilia. Alumnus Paula Lopez will serve as emcee, and there’ll be a silent auction with voice lessons from JR Richards of Dishwalla as well as lunch or dinner with Oscar-winning director Taylor Hackford, both also alumni. The night before, the S.B. High/San Marcos rivalry football game will be played at SBCC’s La Playa Stadium. 

Putz said the day should feel like a college reunion, only bigger and better. Separate tents will be set up for each graduating decade, with one each covering 1875 (the year the school was founded) through 1950. Old friends separated by years and distance will get to see each other again. Memories will be rekindled, and stories will be retold. “We’re a very close-knit school,” said Putz. “Once a Don, always a Don.”

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