Dowloadable eBooks and Classes

Community Announcement on behalf of the Santa Barbara Public Libraries:

The Santa Barbara Public Library System is bringing free workshops on how to download eBooks and audiobooks to personal electronic devices — computer, e-reader, or portable audio. Each workshop has a 10-person limit. Patrons can preregister by contacting their local branch, or reference librarian Brent Field at 805-564-5623. Classes run from February 26 to April 2.

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Dowloadable cBooks and AudiobooksClasses

The Santa Barbara Public Library System is bringing free workshops on how to download eBooks and audiobooks to personal electronic devices — computer, e-reader, or portable audio. Each workshop has a 10-person limit. Patrons can preregister by contacting their local branch, or reference librarian Brent Field at 805-564-5623. Classes run from February 26 to April 2.

At each branch, a downloadable eBooks training class will be presented at 11am. Patrons will learn how to browse, check out, and download OverDrive eBooks to their computer, and how to transfer eBooks to their eReader. Computer experience required. Laptops and eReaders provided. The schedule and more information on eBook classes may be seen at .

At 1pm the same day, with separate registration, there will be a class on how to browse, check out, and download OverDrive audiobooks to a computer and how to transfer an audiobook to a portable digital media player. Computer experience required. Laptops provided. For schedule and more information on audiobook classes, see .

SOLVANG Library – Saturday February 26
EASTSIDE Library – Saturday March 5
CARPINTERIA Library – Friday March 11
MONTECITO Library – Friday March 18
GOLETA Library – Saturday March 26
CENTRAL Library – Saturday April 2

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Mission Santa Inez – Nineteeth Arch

Virtual Reality View of Santa Barbara by renown local photographer Bill Heller

This archway is one of the 22 original arches built in 1807. The first ten arches are also original but the others collapsed over the years. The mission arches between here and number ten were reconstructed in 1989.

This exposed arch is particularly interesting since it allows you to see the interesting structures under the surface and in this view you can zoom in to examine it closer.

Controls from left to right:
+ Zoom in;
- Zoom out;
change the way the view moves when you drag;
toggle full screen

-Bill Heller

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Sand to Snow

SB View Snowman La Cumbre Pk

On one of those classic Santa Barbara, California days that lures travelers from the mountains to the sea—just an hour from sand to snow.

PS: for the week’s forecast, county temperatures, and satellite images of the next storm, visit the real-time Weather Center, only on the Santa Barbara View (top left tab).

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A Better Use of Redevelopment Funds?

Redevelopment funds are intended to fight blight and promote economic development. The state’s nearly 400 active redevelopment agencies take in about $5 billion a year, now Governor Jerry Brown wants to abolish these agencies.

While the City of Santa Barbara wastes spends redevelopment funds on non-critical projects like underground lighting, rotating benches, restroom renovations and library plazas, other California cities are  funding core services including police.

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Hiking Santa Cruz Island: Part II

By John McKinney @TheTrailmaster

Day-trippers who board an Island Packers boat from Ventura Harbor and land at Scorpion Anchorage will typically have about five hours on the isle. Hikers have a choice of three trails, which can be combined to fashion hikes of various lengths. My favorites:

Santa-Cruz-Isle-Cavern-PointCavern Point (From Scorpion Anchorage to Cavern Point is 1.2 miles round trip with 300-foot elevation gain) The short, but steep, climb on Cavern Point Trail leads the hiker to a stunning viewpoint. Look for seals and sea lions bobbing in the waters around the point, as well as cormorants, pigeon guillemots and black oyster-catchers swooping along the rugged volcanic cliffs.

SCruz-Isle-trail-sign-Potato-harborPotato Harbor (From Scorpion Anchorage to Potato Harbor is 5 miles round trip with 300-foot elevation gain) The jaunt to Potato Harbor begins on a right-forking road just beyond the upper end of the campground. After a half-mile climb, the road levels and heads west.

This hike parallels the mainland coast so it’s fun to look back at the cities and civilization you left behind—a unique perspective indeed. Two miles out a spur trail leads oceanward to an overlook of the distinctly tater-shaped cove backed by rugged cliffs.

Smugglers Cove (From Scorpion Anchorage to Smugglers Cove is 7 miles round trip with 500-foot elevation gain) The signed dirt road to Smugglers Cove climbs east then west as it passes a cypress grove. At the two-mile mark, a spur trail leads to San Pedro Point, a worthy destination for the time-short hiker.

The road descends to an airstrip, then down to the beach. Note the century-old eucalyptus and olive trees in the vicinity of Smugglers Cove.

An optional return route is by way of Scorpion Canyon Trail, which travels through the habitat of the Santa Cruz scrub jay, a bird that’s about 30 percent bigger and a much brighter blue than its mainland cousin, and found nowhere else in the world.

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Spanish Street Names of Santa Barbara

masonMASON - honors Colonel Richard B. Mason (pictured left), that cool-headed, broad-minded soldier who was governor of California at the time of the incident of the Lost Cannon, and the reason this street name was set aside for the tall, light-haired American. His term was characterized by use of head and heart, by justice coupled with firmness. He insisted on jury trials, an important precedent in the establishment of common law in California.

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Weekly column by Barbara Hirsch

The U.S. is blessed with more arable land than any other nation. About 45% of the country’s land is used for agriculture, including all that is needed for livestock, which is considerably more than that used for planting crops. On the planet, it is a similar percentage – 40% to 50% of the world’s forests and grasslands have been converted into land for growing food. However, the amount of land used in the U.S. remains consistent and has actually decreased a bit over the years, with increased yields. Globally the land needed continues to increase with the faster growing population. “According to FAO estimates, the world will need to produce 70 per cent more food by 2050 to meet increased demand.”(1)

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The Santa Barbara Garden Post

Weekly Column by Cerena Childress – Sustainability, Eating Fresh and Organic

Rain? Time for Little Adobe Gardens!

Rain Wet Purple Kohlrabi!

Yes, Santa Barbara gardeners almost always love rain!  If  you anticipate rain, get out the wildflower seed packets and toss some seeds about in those unplanted spaces along your walk!   Do only ones okay for that habitat, non invasive.  If you have made clay/compost/seeds seed balls, now is the time to scatter them!  What is a seed ball? Little Adobe Gardens

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Person of the Week: Michael Self

selfThere’s no doubt at all who the Person of the Week should be: Michael Self… for refusing to go along to get along, for treating public funds with prudence and care—and this week for voting against spending $2 million in taxpayer funds on the library plaza project.

Democratic Party true believers do not understand her Everywoman appeal that transcends politics. They hate her common-sense, demonize her motives and worked themselves into a complete funk over her election. The worst they can say about her is that she demanded proof that bulbouts increase public safety and are worth their cost. With her down-home cheerful disposition, willingness to treat respectfully and hear out her detractors, and determination to follow-up with the public she truly serves.

Council Member Self  has distinguished herself as a unique force to be reckoned with.

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Remembering Naturalist Neal Taylor

By John McKinney @TheTrailmaster

Editor’s note: Upon hearing of the passing of Neal Taylor, Santa Barbara View Outdoors editor John McKinney went back to his files and retrieved an article he wrote about Taylor for the Los Angeles Times View section back in 1989. A brief passage is excerpted here, an homage to a wonderful man.

Park naturalist welcomes visitors aboard the Cachuma QueenWay out on Lake Cachuma, somewhere between the call of the loon and the honk of the Canadian goose, there is the amazing spiel of naturalist Neal Taylor.

“At Lake Cachuma, we have seeds that walk, spiders that fly, plants that catch fish and trees that predict rain,” Taylor says to his Eagle Tour passengers aboard the Cachuma Queen, “and there are 276 varieties of birds, including three dozen species of waterfowl on the lake.”

But only one Neal Taylor.

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Housing the Formerly Homeless and Drug Addicted in Local Neighborhoods

On the heels of approved housing for the formerly homeless in the family-friendly enclave of San Roque, a single-family house in a west-side neighborhood will likely become a new detoxification center for the Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse.

The four-bedroom property on Placido Avenue will purportedly be purchased by the Santa Barbara Housing Authority for use as a detoxification center.

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Traffic Calming Devices or Dangerous Traffic Impediments?

More rain is on the way… and the wet weather often causes problems for local motorists. So please be extra vigilant and watch out for those traffic calming devices.

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Library Plaza: Public Safety at Risk!

The whole area ought to be ringed in yellow tape with signs posted that read, “Warning: entering a zone of depravity; proceed at your own risk.

The public comments about the dangers awaiting anyone who might dare to run the gauntlet to get to check out a book or look at an art exhibit or attend an event in the Faulkner Gallery are far too much for a community to bear—and the entire area has to be redesigned.

It’s a real life Dante’s Inferno—no need to check out the book at all.

Criminality. Illicit activity. Drug paraphernalia. Pedophiles hiding in the bushes. Frightful scenes everywhere.  Good grief, why haven’t we heard about the perils at the library before now?

Why does anyone schedule First Thursday nighttime gallery shows in such a dangerous place?

Library-goers are familiar with the sights and smells of the unwashed who hang out, use the bathrooms and nap the day away, but the frightening scenes described far outweighed any benefits of entering the hall of letters and trove of literary masterpieces.

Never fear, the city planners—not the police—have come up with a plan to save all of Santa Barbara from the crime wave that somehow has gone unnoticed and unreported.

With only Council Member Michael Self voting against the plan, the expenditure of up to $2 million dollars in Redevelopment Agency funds was approved. And apparently just in time before the money is snatched away by the evil state.

And safety will surely be returned to the mean streets of Anapamu and Anacapa, and the plaza in between will be redeemed from the circles of Hell.

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The Hazards of Freeway Living

By Cheri Rae

cheriIn the rush to densify Santa Barbara, the planners and promoters of Plan Santa Barbara have advocated the construction of high-density housing along transportation corridors.

The General Plan Update suggests building a limited number of housing units as close as 250 feet, and more at 500 feet from Highway 101, although it notes, “diesel particulate emissions could present a potentially serious health risk to residential and other sensitive land uses within 250 feet of U.S. Hwy 101.” The Plan further suggests that the risks would be mitigated with the installation of landscaping.

A study released in December, 2010 reveals that the health risks in living in close proximity to a freeway extend beyond the acknowledged pulmonary and cardiovascular effects. It concluded the closer a woman lived to a highway during pregnancy, the greater the risk of her bearing a child with autism.

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