For our annual review of stories, some of the Indy’s writers and editors have put together lists of the stories they were proud of this year, or just had fun writing or reading. Here are Associate Editor Jackson Friedman’s picks.

“In Cryonics Lawsuit, Son Fights for Father’s Frozen Head” by Tyler Hayden — The headline says it all. This has got to be one of the strangest cases we’ve ever covered.

“Transgender Health Care in Santa Barbara” by Delaney Smith — Should Santa Barbara’s transgender minors have access to hormone therapy? This eye-opening cover story tactfully covered this and a host of other sensitive subjects related to transgender health care.

“Santa Barbara County in an Uproar over Cannabis Odors” by Nick Welsh — Nick Welsh dove nose first into a hot-button issue that’s still playing out from Carpinteria to the Santa Ynez Valley.

“The Great Agave Experiment” by Matt Kettmann — Can agave correct California’s parched, fire-prone landscape? Some folks in the county believe so and are betting big on this plant’s liquor-making and fire-stopping potential.

“Table for One: Chronicles of a Solo Santa Barbara Diner” by Ninette Paloma — Alex Drake’s cover illustration nicely complemented Ninette Paloma’s prose in this cover story capturing what it can be like to dine out alone as a woman in Santa Barbara.

“Drag Racing Returns to Its Santa Barbara Roots” by Tyler Hayden — This look back on Santa Barbara’s and Carpinteria’s drag-racing past includes a bunch of really fun historical photos.

“Islamic Society’s Prayers Answered with Goleta Mosque” by Delaney Smith — This inspiring story tracks the 20-year uphill battle to get a mosque built post-9/11.


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