10+ LOCAL stories you need to read for Saturday, October 12

  • 7 min to read

The Central Coast AirFest takes flight at the Santa Maria Public Airport today for two days of on-the-ground displays and aerial demonstrations, highlighted by the U.S. Air Force Viper Demonstration Team, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. General admission is $35 for ages 16 to 64; $10 for ages 5 to 15, 65 and older and active military personnel; and free for those 4 and younger. Parking is $10 per vehicle.

Santa Maria Recreation and Parks Department will host a community meeting about existing athletic fields from 4 to 5 p.m. Monday at the Westgate Neighborhood Building, 1300 Marsala Ave.

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss field availability, assess the reservation process and examine the city’s policy on allocating athletic facilities, a city spokesman said.

Currently, the Recreation and Parks Department operates 18 athletic fields, including 11 ballfields. The popular Hagerman Sports Complex, where amenities include four ballfields, is regularly used for tournaments.

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Jimenez Elementary School students run through rows of pumpkins at The Patch at Los Flores Ranch on Friday.

Alicia Araujo helped welcome local families and an energized group of kindergarten children Friday afternoon — all taking in the sea of orange produce and other attractions at Los Flores Ranch Park at the edge of Santa Maria.

“Once fall season starts, everybody comes in,” Araujo said.

The Hancock College student is part of the 2019 edition of The Patch, featuring pumpkins, corn and other produce grown by area students and placed for sale during Halloween season.

A man allegedly armed with a meat cleaver who allegedly threatened to chop up his girlfriend has been arrested after barricading himself inside a Nipomo area home in a nearly six-hour standoff with San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office deputies.

Brian Louis Garzoli, 52, of Arroyo Grande was taken into custody and booked into San Luis Obispo County Jail on suspicion of making criminal threats and committing a felony while out on bail after he surrendered peacefully, sheriff's spokesman Tony Cipolla said.

The incident began about 1:15 p.m. Friday at a house in the 100 block of Old Summit Road when Garzoli allegedly threatened his fiancee with a meat cleaver and began destroying items in the home.

Week Seven of the high school football season was high scoring, but a little one sided. The Nipomo Titans beat Pioneer Valley for a homecoming win. Lompoc did the same, as the Braves went up early and held on for a big win against Dos Pueblos. Orcutt Academy made it a homecoming night trifecta as they beat Frazier Mountain. See more scores, videos and game stories from a busy Friday night right here.

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Orcutt Academy quarterback Bryce Cofield (in blue) is brought down by a Frazier Mountain defender during Friday night's home game at Pioneer Valley High.

The Orcutt Academy Spartans kicked off their Homecoming weekend in style.

The Spartans defeated Lebec’s Frazier Mountain Falcons 41-8 in a Central Sierra League 8-man football game at Pioneer Valley High School in Santa Maria.

It was the Spartans’ (3-4) third straight victory, improving their league record to 2-0.

Now that's Lompoc High football.

After an up-and-down start to the 2019 season, the Braves have hit their stride.

Lompoc played to form Friday night in a dominant performance against Dos Pueblos, smothering the Chargers from the opening kick until the final whistle sounded in a 56-0 victory on Homecoming night.

Nipomo High School senior Jesse Garza had a big night Friday night.

The running back-linebacker helped his football team snap its four-game losing streak. He was also named Nipomo’s Homecoming king during halftime of the Titans’ 17-3 win over Pioneer Valley.

The Titans won for the first time in their new grass field at Nipomo.

The Knights outscored previously unbeaten St. Margaret's 21-0 in the fourth quarter to win in San Juan Capistrano Friday night.

It marks the second straight win for the Knights after a three-game skid.

Darien Langley scored on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Hunter Barnhart for the go-ahead score. Devin Guggia then tacked on a 25-yard touchdown run for some insurance.

A report on plans to form an independent redistricting commission is scheduled to come before the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors when it meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday in Santa Barbara.

Marking the first update since voters approved formation of the commission last year, the report will provide the board with a tentative schedule devised by staff to meet dates required by the ordinance and a new law that will put a squeeze on adopting new district boundaries.

When voters passed Measure G in the November 2018 election, they approved certain key milestone dates for creating an independent 11-person commission to redraw supervisorial district boundaries in 2021, based on the results of the 2020 census.

The Guadalupe Firefighters Association recently received a $10,000 grant from the Union Pacific Foundation.

Guadalupe Fire Department Station 2

Guadalupe Fire Department Station 2.

The grant money will be used for supplemental firefighter equipment and emergency preparedness training for firefighters in Guadalupe.

Specifically, according to Guadalupe Firefighters Association Vice President Ryan Mack, the money will be used for rescue equipment, protective gear, firefighter tools and specialized training.

The association applied for the grant with Union Pacific Foundation five months ago and received notification Sept. 1.

The Union Pacific Foundation is the nonprofit grant-funding wing of Union Pacific, which operates the second largest railroad system in the United States.

“Thanks to Union Pacific Foundation’s generosity, Guadalupe firefighters will be better prepared to respond to railroad emergencies in the future and are extremely grateful for the opportunity to better serve our community,” Mack said.

Ana Marez occasionally sobbed on the witness stand Friday in Lompoc Superior Court as she described the last few hours of her infant daughter’s life.

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Baby Evelyn was 26 days old when she died, allegedly at the hands of her father, Jose Ramirez Jr., 28, who was appearing before Judge Raimundo Montes De Oca on a charge of murder in the infant's May 19 death.

In addition to Marez’ testimony, defense and prosecution attorneys questioned and heard evidence from Lompoc Police Department Detective Charles Scott and Dr. Manuel Montez, a forensic pathologist with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff Coroner’s Office.

CHP plans Smart Start class for newly licensed drivers

The Santa Maria Area Office of the California Highway Patrol will hold a Start Smart traffic safety class for newly licensed young adults ages 15 to 20 on Wednesday, Nov. 20.

The Start Smart classes are two hours long and address such traffic safety issues as collision avoidance techniques, collision causing elements, driver responsibilities and local collision trends.

The program speaks directly to the newly licensed drivers and their parents and guardians.

The class is free and will be held at 1710 N. Carlotti Drive from 6 to 8 p.m. Space can be reserved by calling the Santa Maria CHP Office at 805-349-8728.

Buellton City Council

The regular meeting of the Buellton Planning Commission scheduled for Thursday has been canceled due to a lack of items to discuss, said Clare Barcelona, commission secretary.

Commissioners’ next regular meeting is set for 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, in the City Council Chambers at 140 W. Highway 246 in Buellton.

Agendas are posted in advance on the city’s website at www.cityofbuellton.com.

The 2018 Central Coast Airfest was recently awarded the first place Pinnacle Platinum Award for best Small Civilian Air Show category in 2018 by the International Council of Air Shows (ICAS).

The award was presented at the annual ICAS convention in Las Vegas on Dec. 5 to Chris Kunkle, Airfest Committee chairman, Chris Hastert, Santa Maria Airport General Manager, and Henry Behel, producer and director of the Airfest’s video, The Inventor’s Dream, that was part of the award nomination package.

“We were absolutely thrilled to have been chosen as the top civilian airshow by ICAS, particularly since this was our first airshow” said Kunkle. “We could not have done this without the tremendous support of the airport district, volunteers, and our great sponsors."

Three suspected gang members accused of killing an Oceano man last April entered not guilty pleas in San Luis Obispo County Superior Court on Thursday.

Brothers Robert and Gabriel Garay of San Luis Obispo and Nathaniel Jara of Avila Beach are accused of killing 41-year-old Daniel Fuentes Sr. in association with the Oceano 13 street gang.

Fuentes was shot multiple times on April 2 as the three allegedly chased Fuentes on foot near Ocean and 22nd streets in Oceano, according to a probable cause statement from the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office.

Robert Joseph Garay

Robert Garay

Fuentes sought help at a neighbor's house on Beach Street, where he collapsed and died, according to the statement.

According to court records, all three defendants are charged with first-degree murder, with each carrying criminal street gang sentencing enhancements, in addition to special allegations of committing murder in association with a criminal street gang.

All three also face additional charges of participating in a criminal street gang.

Gabriel Garay faces an additional enhancement of causing great bodily injury by discharging a firearm, according to records.

The three are being held in San Luis Obispo County Jail.

A preliminary hearing hadn't been set at the time of publication, according to Harold Mesick, attorney for Gabriel Garay.

Mesick couldn't comment on the case other than to say his client is entitled to the presumption of innocence.

Attorneys Paul Phillips and R. Thomas Allen, representing Jara and Robert Garay, respectively, couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

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See a breakdown of horoscopes for each astrological sign online.


Sunny. High 83F. Winds WNW at 10 to 20 mph.


Clear skies. Low near 45F. Winds light and variable.


A mainly sunny sky. High 81F. SE winds shifting to NW at 10 to 20 mph.


Sunny. High 83F. Winds W at 10 to 20 mph.


Clear skies. Low around 40F. Winds ESE at 5 to 10 mph.


Mainly sunny. High 79F. SE winds shifting to W at 10 to 15 mph.


Abundant sunshine. High near 85F. Winds WSW at 10 to 20 mph.


Clear skies. Low 41F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph.


Sunny skies. High near 85F. ESE winds shifting to WSW at 10 to 15 mph.


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