Thomas Lamica spent three hours Friday watching hordes of high school students learning about new career opportunities while roaming the Hancock College Santa Maria campus during the 15th annual Career Exploration Day.

“It’s great for them to kind of get some focus on what their possible career choices will be,” said the AHC project director who helped put together this year’s event.

“And it allows us to guide them and let them see some new experiences, too, that they might not always think about,” Lamica added.

Members of the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors will consider giving themselves a raise, hear a report on industrial hemp and consider recommendations regarding the 2020 census when they meet Tuesday in Santa Maria.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in the Board Hearing Room of the Joseph Centeno Administration Building at 511 E. Lakeside Parkway in Santa Maria.

County Human Resources Department staff is recommending a 3% increase in supervisors’ salaries, based on the Consumer Price Index for the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim area.

As old warbirds, fighter jets and other aircraft are set to take to the skies during next week’s Central Coast AirFest, organizers have begun stepped-up preparations for the second annual airshow.

Slated for Oct. 12 and 13, the AirFest is expected to bring thousands of spectators to the Santa Maria Public Airport to celebrate the region’s aviation history, eat good food and watch electrifying routines performed by skilled pilots.

The event will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with four hours of flying each afternoon.

They came, they battled and they conquered.

Santa Maria’s John Leo Dato and Santa Ynez’s Angel Flores shared the spotlight Friday night when boxing returned to the Samala Showroom at the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians’ Casino.

It was the fourth time that Matt McGovern brought his World Fighting Championship (WFC) to the casino and the fourth straight sold out house.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office and Santa Maria Valley Humane Society joined forces last week to help a wayward cat who had been living in the Northern Branch Jail construction site.

Jail Cat - Sgt. Wolf & Phoenix

Sgt. Bill Wolf of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office spotted Phoenix the cat living in an open seismic joint at the North Branch Jail construction site. The Santa Maria Valley Humane Society assisted in trapping Phoenix, who has since been neutered and vaccinated. 

The cat, named Phoenix, was spotted by Sgt. Bill Wolf, who contacted the animal shelter after noticing the cat was living inside a seismic joint at the construction site, said Matt Chan, director of community engagement at the Humane Society.

The open joint in the building construction was scheduled to be filled with sealant, and the sheriff's office was concerned that the cat could be in danger of being hurt or displaced.

With assistance from the Humane Society, Phoenix was trapped on Sept. 27, Chan said.

The cat, now neutered and vaccinated, is with a foster "parent" from Woods Humane Society and will be relocated to serve as a barn cat.

Once operational, the Northern Branch Jail will collaborate with the Humane Society on an inmate dog training and cat socialization program.

Chan said anyone can contact the Humane Society about its Community Cats program, which provides loans of cat traps free of charge, along with free neutering, spaying and vaccinations.

Residents who are looking for resources to help with Community Cats can call Santa Maria Valley Humane Society at 805-349-3435, ext. 6.

A new restaurant has opened at the marina at Cachuma Lake Recreation Area offering food that’s suited for a day of outdoor fun but with a gourmet twist.

HOOK’d Bar and Grill serves up breakfast burritos, barbecue prime top sirloin sandwiches with grilled onions and peppers, soft tacos, a variety of salads, specialty hamburgers, beef hot dogs, french fries, hot and cold beverages and more.

The air-conditioned restaurant has indoor as well as outdoor seating with a shaded patio, and on Saturdays it presents live music by area musicians.

Well, week six was a bit of a mixed bag. Lompoc went down to Santa Ynez and beat the Pirates after a slow start, St. Joseph cruised for a win against Pioneer Valley, and Santa Maria dropped a home game against the SLO Tigers. But, the surprise of the evening has to go to Paraclete coming to Righetti High School and getting a big 42-7 win over the Warriors. Get scores, videos and more from week six of the high school football season, right here.

Righetti coach Tony Payne was appreciative after Friday night's game against Lancaster Paraclete.

Yes, even though his team had just suffered a 42-7 beating for their first loss of the season, Payne found some value in defeat.

Payne felt his team needed to be reminded that they're not perfect.

Before Friday night's game at Santa Ynez High, Lompoc football teams under Andrew Jones had never lost to the Pirates.

The Braves have now won 10 in a row versus their traditional league rival.

This time, Lompoc rolled to a 45-7 romp to open Channel League play at 1-0 and improve to 4-2 overall.

The San Luis Obispo offense did a number on Santa Maria’s Homecoming Friday night.

Undersized and undermanned on defense, the Saints simply couldn’t make nearly enough stops. Tigers quarterback Emilio Corona threw for four touchdowns and ran for two, and the Tigers came away with a 56-30 non-league win at Santa Maria’s Ralph Baldiviez Stadium.

Two prescribed burns are planned after mid-October by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department, one near Orcutt and the other near Los Alamos, a department spokesman said.

A prescribed vegetation management burn will take place at the BarM Ranch, also known as the Barham Ranch, at 10505 Highway 101, about four miles southeast of Los Alamos, said Capt. Daniel Bertucelli, public information officer for County Fire.

Mid-October to early November is the target window for the two-day burn aimed at reducing the risk of wildfire by removing old-growth flammable vegetation while helping to improve rangeland.

A drill to practice deploying oil booms on the ocean is scheduled for Oct. 9 near Goleta by the Santa Barbara County Fire Department, a spokesman said.

County Fire, California Department of Fish and Wildlife Oil Spill Prevention and Response and U.S. Coast Guard personnel will deploy the booms in response to the mock release of oil in the Goleta Beach area, said Fire Department spokesman Capt. Daniel Bertucelli.

The drill using County Fire resources and water rescue equipment is designed to maintain proficiency and multiagency collaboration in responding to oil spills, Bertucelli said.

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Fire equipment will be at the scene for the duration of the drill from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., but no road or beach closures are planned, he said.

The Guadalupe City Council will consider appointing a former Sand City city administrator to take the reins from Guadalupe's current interim administrator during the council's Tuesday meeting.

If approved by the council, Todd Bodem, who served as city administrator in Monterey County's Sand City, will replace interim City Administrator Robert Perrault, who has filled the position on a temporary basis since early March.

Bodem would begin the job Nov. 1.

Most recently, Bodem was the city administrator for Sand City from 2014 to 2018. Prior to that, he held various positions in local and regional government in Minnesota for nearly 28 years.

Bodem received a bachelor's degree in local and urban affairs from St. Cloud University and a master's degree in urban and regional studies from Minnesota University.

The appointment would mark the end of a nearly nine-month search for a new permanent city administrator after Cruz Ramos stepped down in February.

During the search, several qualified applicants from throughout the western United States were considered, a city spokeswoman said, adding respondents were subjected to a comprehensive review and selection process.

The City Council interviewed the most qualified applicants during a session held at the end of July and then interviewed two finalists in a session held in August.

The proposed employment agreement calls for Bodem to serve for three years. At that point, the City Council would review whether to extend his term of employment.

If appointed by the council, Bodem would receive an annual base salary of $137,500.

Three residential burglaries in three days in Santa Ynez, with similar methods of entry and similar items taken, have prompted a request for assistance and words of advice from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office.

Two burglaries took place Tuesday, Oct. 1, when a homeowner in the 3600 block of Olive Street came home from work to find the residence had been burglarized.

A second victim in the 1300 block of Refugio Road returned home in the afternoon it also had been burglarized, said sheriff’s spokesman Lt. Erik Raney.

In both cases, the perpetrator entered through an unlocked rear door, and similar items were taken from each home, Raney said.

Two days later, a third residential burglary was reported in the 1100 block of Tyndall Street, where again the perpetrator gained access through an unlocked rear door and the modus operandi was similar to the two Tuesday burglaries, Raney said.

Currently, no suspect or vehicle associated with the crimes had been identified, he said, although detectives are actively working the investigation.

Raney asked anyone with information relating to the burglaries to contact the Solvang station of the Sheriff’s Office at 805-686-5000 during business hours or the nonemergency dispatch line at 805-683-2724 after hours.

Anonymous tips can be left online at www.sbsheriff.org/home/anonymous-tip/.

Raney also asked residents to watch for suspicious activity in their neighborhoods, and if they spot something suspicious, they should note the license plate or physical description of the suspicious vehicles or individuals and call 911.

Residents also should lock their windows and doors when they leave home, he said.

The driver of a produce truck and trailer hauling celery died following a three-car collision Friday on Highway 1, west of Orcutt near Solomon Road, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Just before noon, the driver of the flatbed truck was heading northbound on Highway 1 at an undetermined rate of speed when a gray Toyota sedan pulling out of the Rancho Maria Golf Course made a left-hand turn in front of the truck, causing the truck driver to swerve and jackknife the truck and trailer, spilling crates of celery along the roadway, California Highway Patrol Officer David Medina said.

A white Volkswagen Jetta heading southbound was unable to avoid the crash and flipped over in a nearby ditch, sustaining damage to the front passenger side.

An aggressive approach to implementing your goals will be necessary this year if you want to take advantage of the opportunities that are heading your way. Preparation and faith will help you find your way to a place where you feel comfortable and able to launch your efforts.

Go online to see a breakdown for each astrological sign.


Abundant sunshine. High 77F. NW winds at 5 to 10 mph, increasing to 15 to 25 mph.


Clear skies. Low 49F. Winds NNE at 10 to 15 mph.


Mainly sunny. High 82F. NE winds shifting to WNW at 10 to 20 mph.


Plenty of sunshine. High 79F. Winds WSW at 10 to 20 mph.


Partly cloudy. Low 47F. Winds light and variable.


A mainly sunny sky. High around 80F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph.


A good deal of sunshine. High near 85F. Winds SW at 10 to 15 mph.


A few passing clouds, otherwise generally clear. Low 47F. Winds ESE at 5 to 10 mph.


Mostly sunny. High 84F. Winds S at 10 to 15 mph.


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