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Hola and Viva! If you’re like me, you’ve been watching carefully for updates on our Old Spanish Days Fiesta celebration. On-again, off-again, outdoors versus indoors, public versus private — it’s been a rollercoaster of a week. Here at the Indy’s virtual HQ, it’s been interesting to watch our reporters make sense of the flurry of press conferences, press releases, emails, calls, and texts that have flown about throughout the week as the status of various events has changed from hour to hour.
A Spirited Open House
One local tradition that went on as planned was the annual Fiesta Kickoff Party held Monday night, August 2, in the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors back parking lot. While “party in a parking lot” may not quite match the professional image that comes to mind when you think of your favorite Realtor, this is not just any parking lot, and it wasn’t just any party.
Spirit of Fiesta Ysabella Yturralde and Junior Spirit Savannah Hoover (shown right) wowed the crowd with live dance performances. With mariachis playing, food from local favorite El Zarape, a photo booth, churros, paletas, and perennial party band Area 51 providing live tunes for dancing, it was quite a lively affair, with enough space and fresh air for all.
Proceeds from this year’s event will benefit Old Spanish Days during another challenging year, and 2021 La Presidenta de Fiesta Stephanie Petlow — a Realtor herself! — was on hand to welcome guests, thank the association, and donate a signed poster. I’ve come to think of this annual celebration as an open house at the Realtors’ house. A good time was certainly had by all!
Seen Around Town
Thursdays are “caravan” days in Santa Barbara, when Realtors tour newly listed properties for sale to preview them for their clients and to stay current on what’s available in different neighborhoods. Thursday is also the day that the Independent publishes! So I’ve gotten in the habit of choosing a couple of listings and stopping by to see my Realtor friends, share this week’s issue, and peek inside. This Thursday, I visited two cuties, saw some friends, picked up a sandwich, and was back at the office within an hour. Allow me to share my personal mini-tour:
Over on the Westside, Devin Wong’s newest listing is tucked between San Andres and Chino Streets on a little cul-de-sac called Western Avenue. I found a steady stream of Realtors checking it out and stopping to chat, including Cimme Eordanidis and Marcos Lazaro.
Devin shared that the house (built in 1910) was originally located a couple of blocks away — where Foodland now stands, and the site of the original Jordano’s Grocery Store — and was moved to its present location in the 1950s. It’s a cute house with lots of potential; find out more from Devin here.
In my downtown neighborhood, the newest home to hit the market is this beautifully redone two-bedroom, two-bath cottage listed by Alex Gallop. Built in 1916 and completely renovated in 2018, this house has its own charming story. The owners remodeled it to be their primary residence because they wanted to be close to their daughter, who lived in Santa Barbara. Fast-forward a couple of years, and the daughter — now married — had a career change that necessitated a move to San Diego … where her parents lived. Everyone in the family is now happily settled down south, and one lucky buyer will make this showplace their new home. The list of upgrades is way too long to mention; find all the details here.
Whether you’re Viva-ing or not (i.e., celebrating Fiesta or Flee-esta as locals have chuckled for years), enjoy your weekend!