Montecito Journal

Village Beat: A Crane Thanksgiving

Among tables adorned with pumpkins and leaves, students, parents and teachers at Crane Country Day School celebrated the season with a Thanksgiving feast. The meal, complete with turkey, stuffing, and all the traditional fixings, had special meaning this year as the school community embraced three of its own families who lost their homes in the Tea Fire. Earlier in the day, Crane students, with the help of volunteers from Westmont, spent hours assembling sifters to donate to Tea Fire victims. Teachers Bob Ingersoll, Phil von Phul and Chris Reussner organized the effort. Materials were donated by local construction company Giffin & Crane; Geoff Crane is grandson of the founder of the school. “They really feel like they’re doing something to contribute,” Williams said about the students helping fire victims. In all, about sixty sifters were made and donated. more

Celebrity Fires Consume Media

As I write this, I’m still waiting to go back home; the mandatory evacuation remains in effect for my neighborhood in Montecito after the devastating “Tea Fire.” My son and I stayed at my house longer than we should have, filling the cars with keepsakes and watering the place down with a garden hose until the howling winds driving the smoke and embers seemed too threatening. I found a creative way past police barricades the next morning to see that my house survived, along with all the houses on Chelham Way. I live adjacent to Westmont College, which lost nine structures, and the next street over from mine, Westmont Road, lost a number of homes. more

From Fire Storm to Storming the Field

Dave Wolf, Westmont head men’s soccer coach, has already begun creating new memories after losing his home in the Tea Fire. Less than four days after his family’s home in the Las Barrancas neighborhood was reduced to ashes, Wolf led the Warriors to a stunning 2-0 upset victory over #5 Azusa Pacific Nov. 17 to capture the Golden State Athletic Conference Men’s Soccer Championship. more

Westmont Fire Protection Plan Activated

The fire moved rapidly, and Westmont College was one of the first areas hit. Scott Craig, Manager of Media Relations at Westmont tells us that students and faculty are attempting to regain normalcy this week after losing eight structures and fourteen faculty homes adjacent to the campus; classes are scheduled to resume December 1. Three of the 17 buildings that make up Clark Halls (F, M and S), Bauder Hall, the physics building, the old math building and two Quonset huts were lost in the blaze. The latter three buildings were scheduled for demolition in the coming weeks to make way for new facilities on campus as part of Phase I of the college’s Master Plan. more

Village Beat: Westmont Groundbreaking

On Thursday, October 23, Westmont College will officially break ground, signifying the beginning of Phase I of its Master Plan. On October 9 the Westmont Board of Trustees voted to take this historic step of breaking ground on two new buildings: Adams Center for the Visual Arts and Winter Hall for Science and Mathematics. more

Governance Forum Part II: Economics and Finance

“Incorporation means higher expectations,” said Goleta’s City Manager Dan Singer at the second of three governance forums hosted by the Montecito Association. In transient occupancy taxes (TOT), which are generated by tourism, the Biltmore, San Ysidro Ranch, and Westmont accounted for 51% of what the County collected this year. more

MBAR Gives Green Light to Westmont

On Monday June 16 the Montecito Board of Architectural Review granted preliminary approval for Phase I of the Westmont College Master Plan. The hearing focused largely on the tower of the proposed chapel, which, at the request of county planner Alex Tuttle, was lowered to 49 feet. more