Guests enjoyed a variety of dance performances at La Primavera. | Photo: Isaac Hernández de Lipa /

Old Spanish Days’ La Primavera event raised more than $40,000 on Saturday night as a sold-out crowd enjoyed an exciting and memorable night of history, dance, and community. 

The La Primavera celebration dates back to 1919 when a group of citizens organized the La Primavera Association to “perpetuate through a spring festival the memory of the early Spanish and pioneer days of California.” Since then, the La Primavera event has become associated with Fiesta and been included as an annual Springtime party in Santa Barbara. 

Guests were treated to folklórico regional dances of Mexico at Old Spanish Days’ La Primavera. | Photo: Isaac Hernández de Lipa /

The kickoff to Fiesta started at Casa De La Guerra, where guests were treated with folklórico, regional dances of Mexico as well as early California dances with live musicians. 

A blessing by Chumash Barbareño Elder and 2023 Fiesta Parade Grand Marshal Ernestine Ignacio De Soto awaited guests as they made their way to the historic El Paseo Restaurant. The guests then enjoyed the Four Nations meal, which was curated to honor the four nations that have governed California, the Chumash, Mexico, Spain, and the U.S.

World-renowned Spanish flamenco artist Patricia Guerrero performs at La Primavera 2023. | Photo: Fritz Olenberger, Courtesy of Old Spanish Days

The crowd was brought to their feet multiple times as performers such as Manuel Gutierrez and world-renowned Spanish flamenco artist Patricia Guerrero showcased their talent in a flamenco dance show to bring the evening to a close.

The 2023 El Presidente David Bolton said that “it was a fun and memorable night as we brought history together with extraordinary entertainment at two iconic Santa Barbara locations for a great cause.” Bolton and his team have been planning the event for 18 months, and expressed their thanks to everyone who was able to attend, participate, and contribute to make the event such a success. 

The evening’s title sponsor, TourSpain, along with community member attendance will help fund the free Fiesta events August 2-6.

From left, 2023 El Presidente David Bolton, Primer Caballero Gonzalo Sarmiento, Spirit of Fiesta Jack Harwood, and 2023 Junior Spirit of Fiesta Olivia Nelson greet guests at Old Spanish Days Fiesta’s 2023 La Primavera. Presidente: | Photo: Isaac Hernández de Lipa /


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.