Posted April 14, 2017
For 93 years, since the first “Old Spanish Days” in 1924, Fiesta has been a celebration of the rich history that makes Santa Barbara such a special place. Annually, the experiences shared during Fiesta serves as a uniting force in our community.
Throughout the years, there has been the respectful recognition and steadfast reverence of the traditions born of its origins. The traditions of civility and dignity harken back to a time when life was difficult and often uncertain. Joy was found in the simplest of things. Celebrations often arose from the arrival of visitors, whether family, friends or those merely passing through town. It was truly a Fiesta!Read more »
Posted February 08, 2017
La Presidente Rhonda Henderson Makes It Official in Mission Sacred Garden
Surrounded by local community and civic Leaders, and with the sacred garden of Old Mission Santa Barbara serving as a historic backdrop, 2017 Old Spanish Days La Presidente Rhonda Ledson Henderson unveiled this year’s Fiesta theme – Unity through Community. In Spanish, Unidos en Comunidad.
“Each year, the Presidente for Old Spanish Days has the privilege of selecting a theme for the coming year, and for me, Fiesta has always meant one thing – COMMUNITY!,” said La Presidente Henderson in making the much-anticipated announcement. “The Fiesta family is large and it extends well past our Board – our over 3,500 volunteers, our sponsors, the Mission, our City and County, our first responders, the dance studios, our collaborative non-profits, the artists, and the over 30 non- profits that stage their fundraisers around Fiesta.”
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Posted November 01, 2016
The organizing group for Santa Barbara’s weeklong Fiesta has named its leadership team for the 93rd edition of one of this country’s largest regional festivals. Old Spanish Days in Santa Barbara has selected its Executive Committee, including the seventh Fiesta La Presidente to lead the organization, as well as five Division Chiefs who will oversee a variety of events from Celebrations to Pageantry and from Dance and Entertainment to Mercados and External Relations.
The 2017 Old Spanish Days Executive Committee will include La Presidente Rhonda Ledson Henderson, who joined the OSD Board in 2006, La Primera Vice Presidente Denise Sanford, La Segunda Vice Presidente Barbara Carroll, La Secretaria Michelle Bischoff, and La Tesorera Angela Miller-Bevan.Read more »
Posted November 01, 2016
What a great Fiesta 2016! It was a great privilege and honor to serve as this year’s El Presidente. I am truly appreciative of Santa Barbara’s involvement and appreciation of Fiesta.
I began this year by inviting everyone to learn how the sea influenced early Santa Barbara, and by asking everyone to join in celebrating the generosity, lifestyle, hospitality and friendliness of the spirit of old Santa Barbara through Fiesta.Read more »
Posted July 20, 2016
The Santa Barbara Historical Museum is proud to introduce a new installation titled Project Fiesta! Building A Complete History of Old Spanish Days, which focuses on the important roles Fiesta has played in the Santa Barbara community. Fall in love with Fiesta as memories of the festival come to life with personal stories, vintage posters, restored costumes, historical photographs, and artifacts that connect our community and celebrate our traditions.Read more »
Posted July 19, 2016
By Sarah Scarminach, Reprinted from Noozhawk News
The environmentalist who created the Ocean Futures Society will lead the parade for this year's celebrations, which have the theme of "The Coastal Frontier." A gloomy morning turned into a beautiful Tuesday afternoon as Jean-Michel Cousteau stood aboard the Double Dolphin and accepted his position as grand marshal for this year’s Historical Fiesta Parade.
The short cruise, put on by Fiesta El Presidente, JC Gordon, began in the Santa Barbara Harbor and ended just off Leadbetter Beach before the ship returned back to port.
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Posted June 18, 2016
Fiesta Ranchera is now Goleta’s biggest event of the year. For the first time, Fiesta Ranchera incorporated an all-inclusive format with over 20 restaurants, wineries and breweries to sample from.
The event is a 50/50 fundraiser for Old Spanish Days and the Goleta Valley Historical Society at a location steeped in California history.Read more »
Posted June 14, 2016
[excerpted from noozhawk.com] Local leaders in business and technology gather to recognize individuals and companies who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to ensuring the economic vitality of the South Coast of Santa Barbara County. Proceeds benefit the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara’s South Coast Business & Technology Awards Fund, which grants scholarships to local students studying business and technology-related subjects at local schools.Read more »
Posted June 13, 2016
The ninth annual Fiesta Ranchera will open Fiesta’s summer season June 16 starting at 5 p.m. at the historic Rancho La Patera & Stow House, 304 N. Los Carneros Road in Goleta.
The beautiful gardens of Rancho La Patera & Stow House offer the perfect ambiance for a sampling of food from local restaurants and wines from local award-winning wineries as well as craft beer and signature drinks.Read more »
Posted May 16, 2016
(REPRINT FROM NEWS-PRESS MAY 15, 2016)
El Presidente J.C. Gordon wanted this year's La Primavera to be special for his year as the head of Old Spanish Days.
In past years, the official kickoff and major fundraiser to Fiesta has taken place downtown, but on this Saturday evening, hundreds of people dined and danced under the stars and next to the ocean at Rancho Dos Pueblos. The isolated ranch and even more isolated beach was the perfect location for this year's theme: Santa Barbara - The Coastal Frontier.
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Posted April 19, 2016
By Gail Arnold, Noozhawk Contributing Writer | @NoozhawkNews | (Reprint from Noozhawk.com)
About 450 enthusiastic community members turned out for the Spirit of Fiesta Auditions on Saturday afternoon at La Cumbre Junior High School on Santa Barbara’s Westside.
The crowd was treated to incredible performances by the 12 finalists for the Spirit of Fiesta and the 11 finalists for the Junior Spirit of Fiesta.
Alexis Simentales was named the 2016 Spirit of Fiesta and Sarah Naretto the Junior Spirit. The runners-up were Alexia Olivares and Reese Danhauer, respectively.Read more »
Posted April 05, 2016
It is with my great pleasure to extend to you, residents and visitors of Santa Barbara, a gracious “Bienvenidos a Todos!” This marks the 92nd year our community will celebrate our seaside town’s multicultural history and traditions.
Santa Barbara’s geographical environment played a central role in the establishment of the isolated Presidio de Santa Barbara. From the times of Santa Barbara’s earliest inhabitants, the Chumash, to the Spanish explorers and on through the Mexican-American Rancho Periods, the significance of the sea has shaped and influenced our American Riviera.Read more »