SLO LIFE Magazine Feb/Mar 2019

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LIFE

SLOmagazine

CENTRAL

COAST

EVENTS

ON THE

RISE

HEALTH

BEHIND

THE SCENES

LOCAL

TASTE

BY THE

NUMBERS

COASTAL

CHARM

FEB/MAR 2019

SLOLIFEMAGAZINE.COM

MEET

DAVE CONGALTON

LIFE BEHIND THE MIC

& CATCHING A DREAM

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 1


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 9


SLO LIFE

magazine

CONTENTS

Volume

10

Number 1

Feb/Mar 2019

42

DAVE CONGALTON

The voice of our local airwaves

steps out from behind the mic

to share his story.

14

16

18

20

Publisher’s Message

Info

On the Cover

In Box

10 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

28

30

34

Briefs

Check out the latest news highlight reel.

Timeline

We take a look at local events from the past two months.

View

It was a crisp winter day when NICK PAVLAKIS stumbled

upon a long-forgotten scene.


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 11


| CONTENTS

36

38

40

52

Q&A

New to her post as Chief Executive Officer

of Downtown SLO, BETTINA SWIGGER is

excited to be a part of the scene.

Now Hear This

Self-proclaimed “musicians for musicians”

TRAVIS LARSON BAND is set to release

their ninth album.

On the Rise

A combination of academic and athletic

success is guiding Mission College

Preparatory senior AVERY MUNSTER

into a bright future.

Family

Always on the hunt for a fun-filled

adventure, PADEN HUGHES spends an

afternoon exploring the San Luis Obispo

Children’s Museum.

64

68

Real Estate

Look no further for insight into the local housing market

as we share the year-to-date statistics of home sales

for both the city and the county of San Luis Obispo.

Health

Not for the faint of heart, we explore the hot health

benefits of taking the plunge into cool, icy waters.

74

Taste

While not a new trend in the foodie world, noodles have

staying power. Ready to sip and slurp, JAIME LEWIS

dives into a bowl of the good stuff and dishes out the

details of our local hot spots.

54

Dwelling

TERRY and ANDREA HEINLEIN open

the doors to their remodeled post-war

bungalow situated in a sunny spot on

the north end of San Luis Obispo where

views of Bishop Peak abound.

12 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

82

84

88

92

Kitchen

Reminiscent of the French dish coq au vin, CHEF

JESSIE RIVAS shares this wine-based, herb-infused

braised chicken meal perfectly suited for dinner parties.

Wine Notes

Digging deep into the red, ANDRIA MCGHEE journeys

into the world of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Brew

Get ready to rant as local beer meister BRANT MYERS

explains the history and shortcomings of the pint glass.

Happenings

Looking for something to do? We’ve got you covered.

Check out the calendar to discover the best events

around the Central Coast in February and March.


C O M M E R C I A L & R E S I D E N T I A L

When I started this company in 1999 I was told I would:

Never be able to offer great service.

Never be able to provide the best quality.

And never be able to do it at the most competive prices.

Here we are 20 years later...the thing I’ve learned is

Never say never.

- S. Ramse

www.RamseyAsphalt.com

Lic# 881030 A/C12/C32

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 13


| PUBLISHER’S MESSAGE

The other day, my teenage daughter, Geneva, was running late to school. As she was frantically getting herself

ready, she called out from the bathroom asking me if I would slice a bagel in half and put it in the toaster for

her. A few minutes later, she appeared as a hurricane blowing through the kitchen, and she scolded me down

the hallway: “Dad, you burnt the heck out of this thing!”

After she left, just for fun, I went online and searched “1980s toaster oven.” In a split second, I traded places

with my 15-year-old when on the screen popped up the words “General Electric Toast ‘n Broil Toast-R-

Oven.” Yes, sir, that was the one.

The orange and brown that framed the skinny plastic control knobs was the thing I remember most—

orange for broil; brown for toast. But, the faux wood grain that wrapped the sides was a dead giveaway

that we actually had the 1970s model. And that would make sense, considering that it caught on fire

about 20% of the time.

I don’t know for sure, but I would guess it had been a wedding present for my parents. Those numbers would add up because, by the time I was Geneva’s

age, it must have been nearing the end of its second decade. Black as night charcoal was baked onto the tin foil lining the bottom. Its glass door moaned

in protest each time it was pried open. And the drip pan below was frozen shut by the melted cheese cementing the slide rails. Encircling the top were

jagged burn marks—our Toast-R-Oven wore a crown.

Bagels hadn’t fully made their way to California at that time, but English muffins were fast becoming a supermarket mainstay. And once we figured

out that you could scoop a teaspoon of Prego or Ragu or whatever spaghetti sauce happened to be on sale that week on top then cover it with a slice of

cheese and throw it in the Toast-R-Oven, it was pretty much game over. Demand for the old G.E. Toast ‘n Broil went through the roof at our house as

my sisters and I discovered the mini pizza. Again, the only problem was that about every fifth time we baked with that thing, it would catch on fire.

Mom made it clear that it was not a big deal. No reason to panic. Nothing to see here. Since we didn’t keep a car in the garage, the solution was simple:

Quickly stab whatever had been cooking with a fork to yank it out of the miniature inferno, then put on a pair of oven mitts and calmly but deliberately

place the now-on-fire Toast-R-Oven in the middle of the concrete garage floor to let it quietly burn itself out. The whole production became routine

and was not much different than the way you may send a kid to “time out” so that he could quell his temper tantrum.

Of course, we learn from our parents by watching them much more than we do by listening to their words. My mom almost always had an audience

of three, and as long as she didn’t panic, neither did we. It was only during a sleepover when our friends witnessed the whole production that it first

occurred to us that anything was out of order with our vintage Toast-R-Oven. Horrified would be the word to characterize the look on their faces.

Sheer terror. After noting the size of their eyes with curiosity, I would return my full attention to the well-done Wonder Bread smoldering on the

plate before me.

We watched this scene play out for years, never giving it a second thought. That’s just what Toast-R-Ovens do. They catch on fire. Big deal. The

only time it was ever a problem was when my sisters and I entered teenagedom and discovered the mini pizza. Everything was fine until it came to

seconds, and thirds, and fourths because the odds for spontaneous combustion increased exponentially with every use, particularly when deploying

the broiler, as was the case with the tiny pies. Usually, when it came to mini pizzas, it was midway through the second round when someone would

have to stop whatever they were doing, fasten the oven mitts, and get focused to walk the flaming Toast-R-Oven to its designated cool-off spot.

That was the only problem.

I can’t remember when it was precisely, it may have been after a week at summer camp, or maybe I was off at college, but I returned home to find that

the Toast-R-Oven was gone. Mom replaced it with a new, shiny Hamilton Beach toaster, which was conspicuously missing its suffix, “-R-Oven.” No

orange, no brown, no wood paneling—just two boring little slots on the top to drop in a couple of slices of bread, or bagels, or English muffins. The

whole thing felt too sanitary to me, too safe. I did—and still do—prefer a little bit of danger with my breakfast.

I would like to take this opportunity to say “thank you” to everyone who had a hand in producing this issue of SLO LIFE Magazine and, most of all,

to our advertisers and subscribers—we couldn’t do it without you.

Live the SLO Life!

Toast-R-Oven

Tom Franciskovich

tom@slolifemagazine.com

Get the story within the story by going to GrowWithTom.com and

subscribing to Tom’s Bombs to receive the next installment.

14 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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SLO LIFE

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CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Sheryl Disher

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Paden Hughes

Jaime Lewis

Andria McGhee

Brant Myers

Jessie Rivas

Shawn Strong

CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS

Eiliv Sonas Aceron

Joanna Kosinska

Thomas Millot

Nick Pavlakis

Vanessa Plakias

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Letters chosen for publication may be edited for clarity and space limitations.

16 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 17


| ON THE COVER

A SNEAK PEEK

BEHIND the scenes

WITH DAVE CONGALTON

BY VANESSA PLAKIAS

Dave showed up right on time. The first thing he went to was a

picture—a big black and white shot hanging in the studio; it’s

from the first year he was a host. He said he still loves doing what

he does after 27 years, which is so awesome. He’s exactly where he

is supposed to be.

It was my first rainy day shoot for SLO LIFE. I

came up to these really cool-looking satellite dish

things, and I had to stop for some photos. They

were sort of old school, really interesting.

I always ask what music people like during

our shoot for the cover. He said that he likes

Led Zeppelin, so I pulled out one of their

albums as I was prepping the shots on my

computer afterward.

18 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

Dave’s sidekick and producer, Craig Hill was

setting up for Dave’s show that day. They’re fun

together. You can tell they really get along well.

They were very playful in front of the camera.

SLO LIFE


HIGHEST HOSPITAL SAFETY RATING.

7 YEARS IN A ROW.

Thank you to our nurses, doctors, staff and volunteers for helping Sierra Vista and Twin Cities Hospitals

achieve recognition as two of the safest hospitals in America, every year since 2012.

Just five hospitals in the state of California have the honor of this distinction.

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 19


| IN BOX

Take us with you!

Hey, SLO LIFE readers: Send us your photos the next time you’re relaxing in town or traveling

far and away with your copy of the magazine. Email us at info@slolifemagazine.com

PISA, ITALY

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA

STEVE and JENNY MATHIS

PLYMOUTH ROCK, MASSACHUSETTS

LISA MCCARTY and MATTHEW HAAS

MOUNT PINATUBO, PHILIPPINES

LEVI, LENA, and BELLA COX

RUDY BUDANO

20 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


GUANACASTE, COSTA RICA

BERLIN, GERMANY

KELLY, MISSY, and MATT TEEL

PAM and RICHARD ZWEIFEL met their daughter,

MARY, and her husband, ELIAZ, along with friends

and in-laws, ARMEL and ANNICK, from Carnac,

France. There were eight different nationalities represented

at dinner, and EVERYONE wanted to know

more about the SLO Life!

RANCHO SANTANA, NICARAGUA

NORTH CAPE, NORWAY

JOHN and FREDENE MAULHARDT and FAMILY

KAREN PETERSEN

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 21


| IN BOX

You showed us!

PARIS, FRANCE

HALEAKALA NATIONAL PARK, MAUI

LEZLIE and SHANE SHESKEY

ANGELA BORIN, RAMSEY VON RAUNER, VERA VON

RAUNER, RANDALL KULLGREN, and NORM BORIN

AGRA, INDIA

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA

LOREN EYLER

PORT TOWNSEND, WASHINGTON

JIM AND SALLY BROOKS-SCHULKE

FISHER FAMILY REUNION

22 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

GERMANY

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA

BRIAN and MAUREEN SOMODI

GLENNA EDMONSON and MARLEY GEDDES

THAILAND

CHERYL and SAMMY PAPERT

LAKE COMO, ITALY

LISA MIA

KIERAN ALLEN with a little piece of home by

the ancient Tha Phae Gate in Chiang Mai, as he

celebrated his last day of a 6-month elephant

internship in a nearby mountain village.

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 23


| IN BOX

SLO LIFE travels!

SANYA, CHINA

NORTH POLE, ALASKA

DERONDA BURDETTE and JUDY TREVOR

MOUNT KILIMANJARO

PARIS, FRANCE

KEN RIENER

The guides nicknamed me Babu (Grandpa) because of

my age (72). Tough trek—5 days up and 2 days down.

ALEX, JOCELYN, FELICIA, JULIETTE, and KARIN

24 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 25


| IN BOX

Trekking with you!

BELIZE

SANIBEL ISLAND, FLORIDA

JIM and RHONDA SEYBERT

RICH and KIM DICKERSON

CUBA

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

JANET LAURSEN and GULLIVER’S TRAVEL

CHARLEY AULT

and JORDIS DAIGLE

SLO LIFE Magazine would like to issue a correction to the Oct/Nov 2018 issue. The photo of the pasta Bolognese was incorrectly credited to Jennifer Pallian. It was taken by Laura Davidson.

26 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

Please send your photos and comments to info@slolifemagazine.com

Follow SLO LIFE on Facebook: Visit facebook.com/slolifemagazine

Visit us online at slolifemagazine.com

Letters may be edited for content and clarity.

To be considered for publication your letter should include your name, address, phone number, or email address (for authentication purposes).


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 27


| BRIEFS

690

The increase to San Luis Obispo County’s

population last year according to estimates

released by the California Department of

Finance. The uptick of .25% was among

the lowest in the state and was classified

as a “natural decrease,” meaning that

more people had died in the county than

were born. Also, the report noted that

approximately 160,000 more people left

California for other states than came here

from them last year.

“We’re going

to Dallas.”

An announcement made by County

Airports Director Kevin Bumen, who

shared that American Airlines will begin

non-stop, year-round service to Dallas-Fort

Worth International Airport in April.

34

The number of years since Paso Robles last

elected a woman to its city council when

Maria Garcia—only the third female in

its history to hold a seat—was sworn in

following her victory in November.

“It had one

of my legs in

its mouth.”

Nick Wapner, a sophomore communications

major at Cal Poly, who was attacked by a

great white shark at Sandspit Beach in

Montaña de Oro State Park. The surfer

received 50 stitches to his leg and is

expected to make a full recovery.

28 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

#RightToRescue

A homemade sign held up by Zoe

Rosenberg of San Luis Obispo, a 16-yearold

animal rights activist, who ran onto the

field during the NCAA Championship

football game between Clemson and

Alabama in Santa Clara to protest

Petaluma Poultry, a chicken supplier to

Levi’s Stadium.

540

The total number of acres preserved as

a result of an agreement between the

Land Conservancy and property owners

Jeff and Joan Buckingham as part of the

Cerro Alto Ranch deal. While the couple

will continue to prohibit public access to

one of the Central Coast’s most iconic

morros—Hollister Peak—the Land

Conservancy did negotiate for some

docent-led hikes.

“Today, I filed

a lawsuit in Los

Angeles to set the

record straight.”

Jay Asher, author of “13 Reasons Why,”

claiming that the Society of Children’s

Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI)

had made “reckless and false statements” to

the news media alleging that the San Luis

Obispo resident had used the SCBWI

in an effort to “lure women sexually,” an

assertion he denies.

$1.9 Billion

The amount that San Francisco-based

Vista Equity Partners is paying to acquire

MindBody of San Luis Obispo. Currently,

the deal is being contested in court by a

class action lawsuit filed by shareholders,

who felt the agreement was unfair to them.

$243,000

The value of the contract awarded by

Cal Poly to Atlanta-based consultant

Damon A. Williams in an effort to make

the campus more inclusive. Currently,

the university ranks as the worst public

school when it comes to serving African-

American students according to a report

conducted by the Race and Equity Center

at USC, and the least racially diverse

student population among all public

universities in California.

“Proud to be a

student, though

we see right

through your

greed, for killing

all across the

world for that war

money.”

A chant repeated for eight minutes by

Cal Poly students protesting at defense

contractor Raytheon’s booth during a

university career fair in October last year.

The students, who came under the scrutiny

of administrators following the incident,

claimed a double standard existed at the

institution as it relates to free speech—

evidenced by the two visits by right-wing

provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos (at a

security cost of $86,200) plus recent racial

flare-ups, including the fraternity blackface

controversy. The students noted that former

Raytheon CEO William Swanson donated

$10 million to the Cal Poly golf program.

5,000

The number of miles that 36-year-old

Walter Handloser, a data analyst of San

Luis Obispo, will attempt to run in 2019

as he plans to complete 50 races of 100

miles or more, which would be nine more

than the current world record. SLO LIFE


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 29


| TIMELINE

Around the County

DECEMBER ’18

12/4

A landmark deal was struck by the Board of Supervisors,

who agreed to a program to end a stalemate and ease

the affordable housing crisis in San Luis Obispo

County. The plan calls for a variety of new revenue

sources to fund a $2 to $4 million pilot program to

encourage construction of low-income and workforce

housing locally. While the source of the monies are

not yet determined, they are expected to arise from a

combination of new construction and vacation rental

fees, additional taxes on second homes, a bond, and a

.25% sales tax increase.

12/3

The Diablo Canyon Decommissioning Engagement Panel—a group of citizens

chosen to provide public input to PG&E concerning the closure of the nuclear

power facility—issued a report stating the plant should be conserved, its

buildings repurposed, and the surrounding lands protected for public access. The

decommissioning process, expected to begin in 2025, was characterized as “lengthy

and complicated” and could stretch out for 50 years as critical issues, such as long-term

storage and removal of spent nuclear fuel, are resolved.

12/11

San Luis Obispo County employees

opted to strike in protest of wages

their union claimed were, on average,

18% less than similar positions in

Kern, Monterey, and Santa Barbara

counties. Hundreds walked off the

job and joined picket lines in front

of the County Government Center

in San Luis Obispo, and many spoke

of their financial hardships during

the public comments session of a

Board of Supervisors meeting. The

union demanded a variety of wage

and benefit increases, including a

2.5% pay hike for certain groups of

employees.

12/28

Emily Marie Bales, 24, was charged

with vehicular manslaughter, DUI

causing great bodily injury, and

leaving the scene of an accident after

striking and killing a Morro Bay

pastor in a hit-and-run incident in

November. The 67-year-old, Dale

Paulsen, had just announced his

retirement from the church that

morning and was out for a walk on

the western shoulder of Ramona

Avenue, east of Pine Avenue, at about

5:30 p.m. on November 18th when

Bales hit Paulsen with her 2015

Toyota Tacoma then fled the scene

and was later found and arrested.

12/31

The Sierra Club sued the Board of Supervisors for

its contentious 2018 land use decision where the

majority—Debbie Arnold, Lynn Compton, and John

Peschong—went against the recommendations of

county staff and the warnings of county attorneys when

it voted to use a map made in 1905 to recognize twelve

parcels of property owned by the Dennis Fesler Family

Trust in rural Arroyo Grande, effectively allowing the

family to build homes and develop the individual lots

without going through the subdivision process which

requires an environmental review. Adam Hill called

the decision “an abuse of process” and Bruce Gibson

accused Compton of ignoring staff recommendations

“because a campaign donor came and asked for a

favor,” to which she said, “It’s not true—to me, this is a

property rights issue.”

30 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


JANUARY ’19

1/12

Stephen Best, who lost his bid for a seat on the Los Osos

Community Services District (CSD) board by a mere 60

votes, filed a lawsuit challenging the results because of what

the Clerk-Recorder’s Office claimed was a clerical error. Best

alleged that it was not, in fact, a simple blunder, but rather an

attempt by the district to seat a preferred candidate. The county

conceded the error, but argued that it had little choice but to

allow Christine Womack, who had been appointed to the board

before the election, to finish out the term of former director,

Jon-Erik Storm. The ordeal leaves behind many questions and

threatens to undermine any decisions made or actions taken by

the current board of the Los Osos CSD and will likely require

the intervention of the Board of Supervisors and the courts.

1/16

Despite an appeal filed by two residents—James Lopes and Odile

Ayral—the third luxury student housing project of El Segundo-based

lawyer and developer Loren Reihl was approved by the San Luis

Obispo City Council. Citing mandates from the State of California

concerning affordable housing targets, the project at 790 E. Foothill

Boulevard, which will result in the demolition of the building that

currently houses Black Horse Coffee and the vacant building that

formerly was occupied by a McDonald’s, was given the green light—

even though it occupies 90% of the lot (versus the standard 75% for

similar projects), reaches a height of 43 feet (versus the standard 35

feet), did not require an environmental impact review to assess traffic

and other impacts, and blocks views of the surrounding landscape.

1/24

The ongoing courtroom drama where District Attorney Dan Dow has

taken over to personally prosecute Cambria resident Herbert Connor, 73,

for sexual assault against his 67-year-old former girlfriend, teetered on

the brink of mistrial when it was found that DNA from someone else was

found on the woman. Superior Court Judge Jacquelyn Duffy ruled that

since evidence was withheld from the defense, it was in violation of the

law. Dow took over the case ahead of the November election—a highly

unusual development—sparking charges of political grandstanding and

pandering to voters by the defense attorney, Ilan Funke-Bilu.

1/21

The San Luis Obispo City Council, having already outlined the

most ambitious municipal goal of carbon emission reductions

nationwide—carbon neutrality by 2035—unanimously

expanded upon its commitments by voting for a resolution

opposing new proposals to truck and pipe crude oil from

offshore platforms through the county. Citing health, safety,

environmental, and climate concerns, the council cited the 2015

crude oil spill off Refugio State Beach in Santa Barbara as an

example for what it was hoping to prevent in the future. The

resolution was the most recent action taken in opposition to the

construction of additional fossil fuel infrastructure locally.

1/29

In a stunning development, PG&E filed for bankruptcy amid $30 billion in

wildfire claims. The company stated that its Chapter 11 action, which will

allow it to restructure its debts while continuing to operate, was the only

way forward following an avalanche of lawsuits it had received as a result

of recent fires, many of which were ignited by its power grid infrastructure.

The company had already begun skipping payments to victims of the 2015

Butte fire, which was caused by a downed power line and is hopeful that

the bankruptcy will eliminate or reduce its eventual payouts related to last

year’s Camp Fire in Paradise, California. Local policymakers are expected to

watch the Chapter 11 proceedings closely for concern over how the judge

will treat the $85 million settlement agreement the utility made with the

county related to the closure of its Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. SLO LIFE

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 31


E X P EC T B E T T ERSM

SAN LUIS OBISPO • 1232IRIS.COM

A rare opportunity to find such a unique property in SLO! Two homes with year round creek and a short distance to downtown. The front home is a remodeled 2

bedroom, ¾ bath home with original hardwood floors. The kitchen is adorned with beautiful accent tiles, hammered copper farm-style sink, stainless steel

appliances, and a sunny kitchen nook. The main/back two bedroom home, is entered via the second story patio with a built in gas BBQ. It is an ideal space for

entertaining and also features an outdoor shower. The open floorplan features a large butcher block island, stained concrete floors that include radiant heat and a

wood burning stove. The ground floor of the house has a double garage and smaller third garage bay, laundry area, office and a full bath.

TERRY GILLESPIE, REALTOR ® , LIC. #01815083 805.459.2022

SAN LUIS OBISPO

Immaculate single level home located in

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2 bed, 2 bath, 1263 sqft home features new

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attached garage. An abundance of windows

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thoughtful layout and touches throughout.

Property Website: 1167Bedford.com

GAVIN PAYNE

BROKER/OWNER, LIC. #01381849

805.550.3918

SAN LUIS OBISPO

This classic, single level 3 bed/1 bath charmer in

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drive, walk or ride to schools, shopping and the

bike path. The home features an open floor plan

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LINDA BUTLER

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BROKER ASSOCIATE, LIC. #00597458

SAN LUIS OBISPO

Experience panoramic views of Edna Valley wine

country from this 3376 sqft French Farmhouse

style home. Located on 10+ acres, quality

features throughout include newly refinished

hardwood flooring, whole house reverse osmosis

system, new exterior paint, high ceilings, open

floor plan, French doors throughout, lush

landscaping, and yellow pine accents throughout.

Property Website: 1990Corbett.com

GAVIN PAYNE

BROKER/OWNER, LIC. #01381849

805.550.3918

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Haven Properties

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805 Main Street, Morro Bay, CA 93442

32 805.592.2050

| SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

BHGREHAVEN.COM


INTRODUCING THE ULTIMATE

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HAVEN PROPERTIES has invested in a Matterport

Camera to introduce San Luis Obispo County to the

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it from any angle, making immersive digital experiences

out of real-world environments. The 3D Showcase

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547 Marsh Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

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805.592.2050

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 33


| VIEW

COMFORT

and JOY

PHOTOGRAPHY BY NICK PAVLAKIS

Eight years ago, Nick Pavlakis set foot on San Luis Obispo’s fertile soil

for the first time. He may as well have been shot through the heart with

one of Cupid’s arrows. It was a moment—a feeling—that stuck with him

until the day he packed up his car and moved to the place that had been

occupying his thoughts.

The jobs came quickly, all three of them, and the tips from the bar

were the icing on the cake. Between shifts, as he explored his adopted

hometown, Pavlakis wondered how he could capture the surrounding

beauty. There was something about photography that had always appealed

to him, so he squirreled away the largess granted to him by his tipsy

patrons for a couple of months until he was able to make a trip to Costco

and plunk down for a Nikon D-SLR bundle. He figured, as so many

people do, that if he hated it, then he would simply return it. Hate is the

polar opposite of what bubbled up that day.

It was a quick jaunt out to Morro Bay that sealed his fate. What better

way to learn his new equipment than by snapping shots of one of the most

34 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


photographed rocks in the world? But, of all things, it was two vultures in

the foreground that marked the moment in time when Pavlakis fell in love

with the craft. “I don’t know what it was exactly, but it was this one shot

that was super, crispy clear; and that was it. I’ve pretty much had a camera

in my hands ever since.” The Costco equipment was eventually sold, and

he used the proceeds to upgrade to a full-frame Nikon D750, which he

reports has “taken things to a whole new level.” Now, as of the past few

months or so, Pavlakis has gone pro and has hung out a shingle offering

both landscape prints as well as portraiture.

Through a confluence of unusual events, the young photographer found

himself home alone for Christmas. Not wanting to sit around and stare

at the walls, he resolved to take the D750 on a trip up to Big Sur. As he

crossed the city limits, an equally lonely windmill caught his attention.

There was no one else on Highway 1, so he spun around in a maneuver

that could have landed him a high-priced Christmas present. Driving off

the road a bit, the scene that you see here began to unfold. The familiar

clunk of the shutter was the only thing that could be heard, as it opened

and closed over and over again—the sounds of comfort and joy. SLO LIFE

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 35


| Q&A

BEATING HEART

After a few short months into her new role as Chief Executive Officer

of Downtown SLO—formerly known as the Downtown Association—

BETTINA SWIGGER stopped by the office to introduce herself and

share her vision for downtown San Luis Obispo as the regional hub for

the intersection of art and culture and entertainment and commerce.

Here are some highlights from our conversation…

We like to take it from the top, Bettina.

Where are you from? I was born in

Albuquerque, New Mexico. It was, and is, a

culturally rich and diverse place to live. My

dad was an English professor. My mom was

an artist. She was really involved in local

politics. She was the president of the League

of Women Voters when I was in first and

second grade. I remember going with her to

the different candidate forums they would

host. I was a little smarty pants. Did a lot of

distinctly nerdy things. I loved to read and

write. I’m a writer. That’s my passion. I’m

actually writing a book right now. My home

life was really focused on reading and writing

and language and music. I started playing

viola when I was five.

And, what about school? High school was a

miserable experience, and I couldn’t get out

of there soon enough. I graduated when I

was 16. Then I took a year off and followed

my sister to Rochester, New York. She was

in graduate school at the Eastman School

of Music. After that, she got a one-year

teaching position in Durango, Colorado.

So, I moved to Durango with her, which is

this totally beautiful Southwest town with a

narrow gauge railroad, and it’s surrounded by

mountains. I volunteered for a radio station,

worked at a coffee shop called the Steaming

Bean, I played in the local symphony, and

volunteered in an art center. It was a life that

was similar in a lot of ways to my life now.

What came next? I went to Colorado

College in Colorado Springs and worked at

the college for seven years after I graduated.

I started working during the summer for

a music festival, The Colorado College

Summer Music Festival. I left to become the

Executive Director of the Cultural Office of

the Pikes Peak Region. I was there for three

years. I was really happy there actually, but

then Scott Yoo walked into my office one

day. He was the Music Director for Festival

Mozaic, and he was in town for a visit. He

said, “Hey, I think you should apply for this

job in San Luis Obispo.” And I said, “I love

San Francisco.” [laughter]

How did your eight years at the helm of the

festival prepare you for Downtown SLO?

When I was at Festival Mozaic, I was always

trying to get arts and culture and music

to be elevated as part of the conversation

about economic development. So, now I’m

in a position where I get to kind of put my

money where my mouth is, so to speak.

That’s probably not the best metaphor. I

get to practice what I preach. I can see

every day that the businesses downtown

that incorporate elements of having an

experience instead of just a transaction, and

that are based in principles of design and are

trying to create something that people will

appreciate and enjoy, actually have a lot of

their roots in artistic practice, even though

they might not see it that way.

What’s new at Downtown SLO? We

recently moved from a second-floor office,

sort of hidden away from the public. Now

we are on Chorro Street, and we have a

storefront. We see visitors there. We have

a retail store of our own now, so we are

experiencing what a lot of our members

have been experiencing, asking ourselves, “Is

this a viable activity in the 21st Century?”

Retail is changing a lot. That doesn’t mean

it’s dead, but it’s changing. So, getting back

to your question, we’re actively creating

programs for people to come downtown and

be surprised and delighted, stay and spend

some money, and maybe learn something

new and connect with their neighbors

while they’re at it. I walk downtown every

day and see blank canvases for murals. I

see some streets that, frankly, could be

a little bit cleaner. And I see some ways

that we can activate our public spaces that

could encourage visitors to linger a little

bit longer. I love our downtown—it’s the

beating heart of the Central Coast. SLO LIFE

36 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 37


| NOW HEAR THIS

TRAVIS LARSON

BAND

38 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


orro Bay is a small town, which is what makes this

story so unlikely. First, we have to go back in time

to an era when people with names like Michael

and Madonna dominated the airwaves. Very few

knew of a band called Rush, and fewer still could

Mname any of their songs except, perhaps, a couple

of their hits, such as “Tom Sawyer” or “Working Man.” In Morro Bay, at the time,

there may have been a handful of people who could attempt to name the members

of the Canadian rock band—Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart.

On either side of Morro Bay’s beachside high school, there were two gangly

fourteen-year-old kids, who had independently discovered the guitar, and Rush.

The two became obsessed with striking chords in the same way their musical

heroes did it, practicing day and night to get it right. Then, after just six months

into their respective musical journeys, they found one another. Travis Larson and

Jennifer Young, it could be imagined, were placed on planet Earth as some sort of

cosmic amusement, mirror images—one female, one male.

Similar to the classic scene from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer at the Island

of the Misfit Toys, from that point forward, Larson and Young resolved to become

“independent together.” First, it was all about getting gigs and doing whatever

it took to book shows, which meant playing covers. Whether it was The Rolling

Stones or The Police, it didn’t matter, “We slung it out in local dive bars for five

or six years before we started doing our own stuff,” is how Larson characterizes

those early days. The more the dynamic duo jammed together, the more they

began to trust themselves and each other with their unique blend of creativity.

Songs and music started bubbling to the surface. That’s when they decided to

build a recording studio, which they did with Kip Stork, who had been the

sound technician for the old SLO Brew. Together, the trio came up with Avalon

Recording Studio, which continues to operate today in downtown San Luis

Obispo under Stork’s watchful eye.

With the ability to create and record their own music, Larson and Young turned

their attention toward their need for a drummer. After asking around, the choice

became clear after meeting Dale Moon, then a Cal Poly student. In a testament to

the chemistry found between the bandmates, this all happened in 1996—23 years

ago. Since that time, Travis Larson Band has gone on to cut eight albums with

its ninth in production for next year. But, the secret sauce has been grinding it

out on the road, touring almost non-stop for two decades building a fan base one

audience member at a time. It’s the musical equivalent of the football metaphor:

three yards and a cloud of dust.

The eponymous bandmate, Larson, has been particularly prolific in this area,

as he jets around the country teaching guitar to “guitar geeks” at events such as

the recent NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) conference in

Anaheim, and music equipment retailers nationwide. Today the band, in which

Young now handles the bass duties with Larson on guitar and Moon on drums,

ends most of its tours at the same place it begins—on Higuera Street, at the Frog

& Peach Pub. And, that has been a continuous theme for the trio from its genesis,

as it resisted the temptation to move away to the big city to make it happen.

Larson sums up the sentiment through a raspy voice that he likens to Peppermint

Patty, which accompanied him on his way home after a long stretch of guitar

clinics on the road: “We’ve never left the Central Coast. Just toured incessantly

and shamelessly self-promoted to make it happen where we want to be.” SLO LIFE

UPCOMING TRAVIS LARSON SOLO SHOWS

March 15 + 16 . The Libertine . Morro Bay

March 22 . The Siren . Morro Bay

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 39


| ON THE RISE

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT

Avery Munster

This eighteen-year-old Mission College

Preparatory Catholic High School senior

is eyeing a bright future ahead.

What sort of extracurricular activities are you involved in?

I play tennis four times a week and run a beginner tennis clinic for

children with autism on Saturdays. I played high school varsity tennis

every year at MCP, and this last year I played first singles and doubles and

was team captain.

What recognition have you received? I have earned Honor Roll with

Distinction every year in high school, which is awarded to those with

a GPA of over a 4.0. I also won the Health Science Subject Award, the

World Literature Subject Award, Second Place in the 2017 Bentley Physics

International SMART Competition, the AP English Language Subject

Award, and was an AP Scholar.

Who has influenced you the most? My friend Makenna Parkinson has

influenced me because, even though she has been sick for many years,

she is fiercely dedicated to school, diving, and maintaining friendships.

She never allows her illness to stop her from doing the important things.

She has such a big heart, and I admire that quality.

If you could meet anyone, who would it be? I would like to meet Ruth

Bader Ginsburg, who is currently making history as a Supreme Court

Justice. I would like to meet her in order to discover how she was able to

maintain a fulfilling personal life while also reaching the highest position

in her chosen field.

What are your interests/hobbies? I spend a lot of time crocheting and have just

taken up needle felting. I just finished crocheting an infinity scarf and needle

felting a squirrel. Most of my creations are gifts for friends and family.

What is going on with you now? I am currently running my weekly tennis clinic

for children with autism called Tennis on the Spectrum (TOTS), crocheting,

needle felting, and maintaining my grades in my classes.

What career do you see yourself in someday? I want to be a veterinarian because

I love science and animals. I shadowed a local veterinarian and felt comfortable in

a veterinary clinic. I think a career in that field would be really satisfying.

What schools are you considering for college? I applied to Bowdoin College,

Kenyon College, Macalester College, Bates College, Oberlin College, Colby

College, Scripps College, Occidental College, and Whitman College. SLO LIFE

Know a student On the Rise?

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40 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 41


| MEET YOUR NEIGHBOR

42 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


DREAM

CATCHER

PHOTOGRAPHY BY VANESSA PLAKIAS

Twenty-seven years ago, DAVE CONGALTON was a ball of

nerves as he settled into his seat and switched on his microphone

for the first time at San Luis Obispo-based KVEC. Over the

course of thousands of interviews, he found his voice—and his

calling—as the host of the local “Hometown Radio Show” daily

broadcast. Never far from his heart, however, is his passion

for writing. And, after many ups and downs, he found success

in Hollywood a few years ago when his screenplay “Author’s

Anonymous” was made into a movie. As he wandered around the

set meeting the famous actors who were busy memorizing the lines

he had written, he described the experience as “catching a dream.”

Here is his story…

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 43


44 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


ake it from the top, Dave. Where are you

from? I was born in Teaneck, New Jersey.

My family was all New Jersey-based. I’m

the youngest of three sons. My father was

in retail, and he bounced around, mostly

up and down the east coast; but in 1960,

I would’ve been seven years old, he took

a job in suburban Chicago. So, in August T1960, we became the Midwestern branch of the family. Even though I was

born in New Jersey, I consider myself to be a native of Chicago. I’ve always

had trouble with my vision. I was born with cataracts in my eyes. When

my mother was pregnant with me she got chicken pox for the second

time, which somehow caused this issue. For the first few years I was fine,

but then my family realized that I couldn’t tell the difference between

my dad and my uncle. I wore these really thick Coke-bottle glasses. I

was never bullied, but it was a constant source of ridicule. That’s when I

developed humor as a defense mechanism.

What was it like growing up in the Windy City? I grew up in the

suburbs. I went to Eastern Illinois University on a debating scholarship.

I got a master’s at Illinois State. I thought I was going to be a college

professor. I taught at Concordia College in Minnesota, University of

Utah, DePauw University in Indiana, and then University of Tulsa. I was

teaching media, it was communications and media; mostly media history

and media law and media theory. But, I wasn’t actually doing anything

in media, and I never had. I was just teaching it. I was a historian and

could tell you all about the history of CBS and the FCC and the fairness

doctrine. I knew all that stuff, and have since forgotten everything. I

attended all of the academic conventions. I distinctly remember one in

Chicago, which turned out to be my last. I did all of the social events

there; socialized at the bar, sat on one of the panels, then I woke up the

next morning and had one of those look-in-the-mirror moments and said,

“Is this it?” I was 34 years old, living in Oklahoma, and miserable.

What did you do? I picked up the phone and called the university

counseling center. I said, “Look, I’m not suicidal. I’m not depressed. I

just need someone to talk to.” So, they tell me that I should call this guy

named Terry. It turned out that he used to be the director of the center,

but he was fired because he refused to wear a tie to work. I said to myself,

“That’s the guy.” When we first met, he sat me down and said, “Okay,

what is it you want to do?” I told him that I had always wanted to live in

California, and I’ve always wanted to be a writer or something creative.

He said, “Okay, this is our strategy: You’re going to finish out your year at

the University of Tulsa; you’re going to quit your job; you’re going to move

to California to do something creative.” We would meet twice a month

to refine my plan. And sometime during this process, I came across a job

notice for a one-year, non-renewable lecturer position at Cal Poly. I had

never heard of Cal Poly, never heard of San Luis Obispo, but I figured it

would give me a foothold in California, so I applied. They interviewed me

over the phone.

So, when was this exactly? This was 1987, August. I did everything in my

power to make sure they wouldn’t hire me back. It’s like the singer Roy

Orbison said, “If you have something to fall back on, you always will.”

So, I didn’t just burn bridges at Cal Poly, I actively set a blowtorch to

them. I wanted to make sure that I didn’t settle into academic life again

because I knew it would make me miserable and push me further away

from my dream, which is to write. But, it got me to California and I was

determined to keep going. Right out of the gate, I put my writing to

the test when I entered a stand-up comedy contest. It was an incredible

feeling when I actually won the thing. It validated everything Terry had

said, the guy back in Tulsa who told me I needed to follow my dream. I

called him afterward to share the news. He was so proud of me. Without

question, he had changed my life.

You have to tell us about the comedy routine. Alright. So, I had a stuffed

rabbit named Peter, a toy rabbit, and I had my rabbit do impersonations;

and for the last impersonation, I did this bit about the local KSBY News

anchor, Rick Martel. The place went nuts. It went nuts. But here’s the deal.

It’s the only time as a communication professional that I screwed this

up—because it was a painful lesson—but since I had won, I was asked

to come back another night to open for three professional comedians. I

changed my act. I didn’t do the same routine I won with. I did something

completely different, and I bombed. I was so bad. And to make it worse,

I was single at the time and sharing a place with a Cal Poly student,

basically renting a room. After the routine, I went to the bar and drank

way too much and then I walked home. On my way, a police officer stops

and questions me. They were looking for someone on an attempted rape.

Anyway, when I finally get to my house, I opened the door, turned on

the lights, and all my furniture was gone, everything. It was completely

cleared out. Apparently, this guy was unable to pay the rent that month, so

he moved without telling me and he took all the stuff. One of the worst

nights of my life.

Wow, I guess so. By this time, I had written a couple of screenplays and

was trying to sell movie scripts or get an agent or whatever, so I used

the little bit of money I had saved teaching at Poly to move to L.A., to

Venice. I got a job working at a department store in Santa Monica called

Henshey’s. I worked in the stationery and book section making five bucks

an hour. I kept writing screenplays this whole time, but they were all

terrible. Just awful. Then I met this woman, Charlotte Alexander, who

I eventually married and later divorced. I was living in Venice; she was

living in Indiana. I went back for a couple months to live with her, and

while we were together, we decided to get married. She got me a job at the

local newspaper, without any experience at all, because it was Richmond,

Indiana. Small town. They sent me to city council meetings. I bombed. Oh

my God, I bombed. I didn’t know what I was doing. Then they gave me a

chance to write feature stories, profile people, and I found my voice.

So, what came next? Three months later, we come back to San Luis

Obispo. We were house sitting for a former student of mine, who was my

age. I took the clips from my newspaper job in Indiana, and I went into

the Telegram-Tribune. They gave me a three-day trial. The city editor loved

my writing, and so he gave me a test. They give you a current events test,

and I was the only reporter there that could name all nine Supreme Court

justices. [laughter] So, I’m working at the Trib and continuing to write

screenplays on the side. They were terrible, just awful, and I was getting

more and more desperate with each. Until, finally, I gave up. Quit the

movie writing. And, that’s about the time that I heard about an opening

at the radio station. KVEC was looking for an afternoon host in the 2

to 4 p.m. timeslot. I went in for a meeting and they said, “We’ll get back

to you.” It took them forever, at least a couple of months, before I heard

anything. They offered me the job because I don’t think they could find

anyone else willing to work for $12,000 a year with no benefits.

Tell us about your first day. On the first day, I walked into the station and

they said, “The morning host just quit. You’re going to take over her show.”

I didn’t know anything about radio. Didn’t have any experience. So, I was >>

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 45


supposed to debut on January 6, 1992, but we had an ice storm the night

before and it knocked down the broadcast antenna. I tried not to take it as

a bad omen. It was the next day, January 7th—27 years ago now—that I

did my first show. Rick Martel, the KSBY anchor that I had impersonated

for the comedy routine I talked about earlier, was my first guest. It was

actually a pretty decent show. I was so nervous, but did okay. The very next

day, I came back in and just stunk it up. The second show was awful. I had

a woman on who was a clown, followed by some people who talked about

the estuary. It was so bad. But, it was a good lesson because to this day, my

show is as good as anything in the country or it’s so bad that even I’m not

listening to it. Those early experiences allowed me to find my voice, learn

where we can shift gears, and carry the program when necessary.

And, the most memorable day in the broadcast booth? That would be

the day that Alex Madonna died, probably 13 or 14 years ago now. It was

a Thursday. I canceled everything. So, I called this woman up who I had

scheduled to have on as a guest, and I said, “I’m sorry, but I need to cancel

you today because the guy that built the Madonna Inn, Alex Madonna,

just passed away, and we’re going to talk about that instead.” And she

says, “Well, that’s not going to take up the whole four hours, is it?” I said,

“You know what, I think it is.” Sure enough, I spent about 20 minutes

talking about him and what he meant to me, and then I just sat there for

four hours, and I took phone calls. And at 4:19 or 4:20, Phyllis Madonna,

Alex’s wife, calls in. It was probably my best moment of radio, because

what I did was absolutely nothing. I just kind of sat back and I let her talk,

and she was grieving, and she was anguished, and it was raw, and she was

crying, but she was listening to all the tributes that people were giving.

It was incredibly moving. I kept her on until the hard news break at the

bottom of the hour, and I thanked her, and left it at that. That’s the moment.

What have you learned about yourself along the way? I’ve learned that

I’m doing the job I was meant to do. This is the job I was meant to do. I

was meant to be a radio host. I think I’m never going to win the Peabody

Award or be an NPR correspondent, but I think for local radio, which is

the mission of, to me, radio, to be local, that’s why the FCC set up radio

stations, we’re supposed to serve the community. It’s a real honor for me

to do this and to keep local radio alive. And, at the same time, I think I do

okay with it, and that’s a gift. Not many people get to do the job they were

meant to do.

How would you describe what you do on air? I’m not the community

cheerleader. I won’t go out and do a remote [broadcast] from the blood

bank. I don’t like doing those. That’s not me. I like being in my studio

with my microphone. I’m the watchdog. The show is what matters. My

job is to kind of help keep an eye on things and to give a voice to people.

H.L. Mencken said, “The role of the media is to afflict the comfortable >>

46 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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friendly. We felt like he was truly in the hunt with us as we searched for a house. We are thankful

to have worked with him.

graham @ ccreslo.com

805.459.1865 | CalBRE #01873454

www.ccreslo.com

3196 South Higuera Suite D, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

- Bobby & Kelly Boss, San Luis Obispo


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 47


and comfort the afflicted.” That’s me. Nothing gives me more joy than

giving someone an hour. I’m not claiming that it changes anything, but

at least they have the satisfaction that somebody listened to them. Take,

for example, this guy, who works at an auto parts store. Through me, we’ve

created this persona, Conservative Bob, and he comes in multiple times

a year, and he sounds off on the issues of the day, and he is so grateful for

that opportunity. And he’s good for me because he gets phone calls. I can’t

force people to listen, but I’m striving for what we call “driveway radio.”

That’s a show that is so good that you are willing to sit in your driveway to

listen to the end of it after your commute home.

What does the future hold for you? Well, I’m 65. I’d like to do the show

for at least another five years. Then, we’ll see. Right now, I’m looking for

calmer waters. I’m coming off a very rough four years. From November

2014 to November 2018, I’ve had six eye surgeries. I had a detached retina,

and they reattached it, which I’m grateful for, but they weren’t able to

really do anything for the left eye. On top of that: shingles, bilateral hernia,

diverticulitis, 18 days in the hospital. Charlotte and I had an amicable

divorce after 27 years of marriage, but it still hurts. Moved into a new

house. My station, KVEC, was bought by American General Media. My

dog was killed by a neighbor’s dog while I was in the hospital. And, I was

hit by a car. All that in four years. Not looking for a pity party, but it’s been

a tough run and, like I said, I’m ready for some calmer waters. And, life is

good. I’ve been able to do some traveling recently and I’m writing again.

Maybe for my final phase I’ll become a travel writer, who knows?

What are you writing these days? It’s back to screenplays. So, for the

last five, six years, I’ve been trying to get a movie made called “Seven

Sisters.” One thing I have learned over the years, is that you should write

about what you know. Those first few screenplays I wrote were all turkeys

because I was going for the big idea. “Authors Anonymous,” on the other

hand, was about me and my experiences. Most of what happened in that

movie actually happened to me. “Seven Sisters” is about a guy in San

Luis Obispo, who overcomes personal grief by taking up hiking, and he

>>

48 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 49


“Don’t ever give up on your dream, because there’s no

better feeling in the world than catching a dream.”

hikes the Seven Sisters. It starts off as a comedy, but then takes a whole

unexpected turn. That’s sort of my valentine to San Luis, because this is

my home and I don’t know that I can leave; I’ll always stay here. So, I’m

trying to get that made. Now I’m working with Hallmark on some TV

movies. Last January, we pitched this murder mystery, and we finally heard

back yesterday that they want to know more. They sat on it for a year. It

took eight years for “Authors Anonymous” to be made. It’s just hurry up

and wait.

Okay, Dave, just like you do with guests on your show as you approach

the top of the hour, I’m going to ask you: Any final thoughts? I don’t

know. I like the guy I’m becoming. To survive everything I did these last

four years, I know people have it a lot worse, but I went through a lot.

But having survived it, I kind of rebuilt myself. I think I’m mellower on

the radio. I think I’m friendlier to people. I think I have a more positive

outlook. I’m traveling. I’m in a positive relationship. I made a point in the

last year of reaching out to both of my brothers. We’re closer now than

we’ve ever been. Just thinking back to all those years ago and the decision

to move to San Luis. So, now I go around to speak to these different

writers’ groups in California and I tell people, “Don’t ever give up on

your dream, because there’s no better feeling in the world than catching

a dream.” SLO LIFE

50 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


COMING SOON

Your new favorite place

to shop in downtown

SLO will be opening

in February. We look

forward to meeting you.

1019 Morro Street . San Luis Obispo

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㠀 㔀 ⸀ 㔀 㐀 アパート⸀ 㠀 㠀 㘀 ⴀ 眀 眀 眀 ⸀ 䜀 愀 爀 搀 攀 渀 匀 琀 爀 攀 攀 琀 䜀 漀 氀 搀 猀 洀 椀 琀 栀 猀 ⸀ 挀 漀 洀

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 51


| FAMILY

SLO CHILDREN’S

MUSEUM

BY PADEN HUGHES

Delight. There is a lot parents will do

to coax a look of delight from our

children. I think of all the times

we’ll attempt a silly dance, cheer as

our little ones jump from the couch

into a pile of pillows, or, in my case,

watch the movie “Frozen” for the

thousandth time. But, at the end of the day, it’s always

worth it, and we keep coming back for more, because

witnessing our children engage in a world full of magic

and miracles is just as thrilling to us, the big kids, as it is

to them. Their joy is our joy.

One of the best local spots guaranteed to fill my daughter

with glee is the San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum.

Originally opened in 1990, the museum reopened in 2008

after a three-year $5 million remodel, resulting in the

world-class facilities it offers today. With a combination

of permanent and temporary exhibits, the museum

continually offers fresh inspiration to learn through play.

For parents and children alike, it’s true: the minute you

step into the museum, it lights up your imagination.

Recently, my family and I spent the day exploring the

three levels of the museum. The first floor is more science

focused, the second floor emphasizes creativity, and the

third floor is designed specifically for toddlers.

Our exploration began with a hands-on exhibit called the

“Augmented Reality Sandbox,” which comes complete

with kinesthetic sand that holds its form as you shape it

into whatever your imagination can conjure. If you can

manage to morph it into a single letter, the projector

above will scan the hand-made typography and respond

by changing the color of its light. It was something that

can only be described as magic.

The next long stop for my daughter, Kennedy, came at

the backlit multicolored pegboard. As she began working

away on her creation, a man who I guessed to be in his

eighties, also got busy spelling out the word, “Hi.” It was

fascinating to see the two generations equally mesmerized

by the exhibit, each bringing their own experiences and

creativity to the empty canvas. The notion that creativity

flows no matter our age was on full display.

As we made our way upstairs, it quickly became

apparent it was going to be our favorite. Every corner

of the floor was designed as if it were on the set of

“Sesame Street,” a scene made for kids to step into

and make their own. From a diner equipped with a

kid-sized kitchen and plastic foods to sell, to a doctor’s

office, to a theatrical stage, to a rock climbing wall, to

the ever-popular fire truck, to the police motorcycle, it

was endless fun seeing what would unfold behind the

next corner.

Without a doubt, the highlight of Kennedy’s trip was

playing with the make-believe fruit and vegetables

organized in bins as if it were a roadside farm stand

in Edna Valley. I not-so-successfully attempted to

contain my pride as she named each piece of fruit and

vegetable in her cart, then passed the produce out to

the other kids playing nearby and encouraged them

to make dinner. The cycle repeated as she refilled the

shopping carts to the point they were overflowing,

restocked the bins, and then started all over again. We

spent almost an hour playing with the plastic produce,

and she was in heaven.

With just ten minutes to go until closing time, we

finally made our way up to the third floor and spent

those last moments with the toddler train. Just as I

thought the outing could not have possibly gotten

better, it did as she climbed

aboard and pretended to be

the conductor. She mostly

loved yanking on the string

that operated the whistle,

which rang out in the same

way we have come to expect

from the Amtrak that

passes by our home daily.

As the museum closed

and we made our way out

the front door, I knew the

day was a success when

my daughter proclaimed,

“So fun!” SLO LIFE

PADEN HUGHES is

co-owner of Gymnazo

and enjoys exploring

the Central Coast.

52 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 53


| DWELLING

AS ONE

The past, present, and future come together in a post-war

bungalow on the north end of San Luis Obispo.

54 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 55


It was supposed to just be one semester,

some time away from the icy, cold hustle

and bustle of Boston. The traffic was getting

out of hand, and the near constant state

of commuting between his office at the

university and his private practice was,

frankly, getting old. Yes, it is fair to say that

Terry Heinlein needed a break.

After a quick trip through California the

previous year, there was one thought that

would not leave his mind as he stared through

the frosty windshield at the bumper inching

forward ahead of him: San Luis Obispo. He

tells the story about flying into Los Angeles—

or was it San Francisco?—then driving up, or

down, Highway 101 and exiting for a break

midway. “I fell in love immediately,” recalls

Heinlein. Although an East Coaster all the

way through, who was born in Washington,

D.C. and had roots firmly planted within the

orbit of go-go Beantown, he found something

that he had been missing right here on the

Central Coast. “People here are so nice. I don’t >>

56 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


www.idlershome.com

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 57


ever want to go back to Boston. [laughter] I love being

here. It’s very different. San Luis is a different place.

It’s a great town.”

With a lively private practice as an architect

specializing in restorations, additions, and

renovations of historic buildings, Heinlein was busy.

If that was not enough, he was also teaching his craft

to eager students at the University of Pennsylvania

and Boston Architectural College, including taking

on various levels of administrative roles, as well.

It was during a particularly hectic day toggling

between clients and students that he caught wind

of something that he needed to do. Cal Poly was

searching for a visiting professor to teach in its

architecture department for a semester. Figuring that

was exactly what he needed to recharge his batteries,

Heinlein along with his wife, Andrea, and their son

headed off to San Luis Obispo for what was to be a

four-month sojourn. Except it wasn’t.

One semester quickly became nine. The weeks and

months melted away as if they were icicles holding on

during a warm spring afternoon; no one noticed. The

Heinleins settled into a new life on the Central Coast

and found its unique culture, the SLO Life, suited

them just fine. But, they were never able to entirely

leave the East Coast behind, as Heinlein logged many

hours on a plane for meetings with clients, and there

were so many family ties on the other side of the

country. At some point after those nine semesters,

reality set in and the family moved back to whence it

came but, as Heinlein noted during this part of the >>

58 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 59


etelling of the story, “Always with the idea that we’d

be back.”

The hold-downs in Boston began to loosen their grip

in 2006 and allowed for a homecoming of sorts. But,

as it turned out, the real estate market was white hot.

Nothing was available for a price that penciled out for

the Bostonians, so they sat on the sidelines until the

Great Recession made its way to the Central Coast.

There, perched atop a hillside overlooking the north

end of town, the Heinleins stumbled upon a 1940s

vintage two-bed, one-bath shoebox of a house. The

little cottage was one of many occupying Tassajara

Drive, originally built by Cal Poly as faculty housing

after World War II when that part of town had

more Holsteins in residence than humans. With an

abundance of sunshine, an oversized lot, and friendly

neighbors, the East Coasters began the process of

becoming West Coasters.

Winding things down in Boston would take some

time, and some planning, so the house was rented to

a Cal Poly professor for the next eight or nine years.

During that period, the architect took on some new

clients: his wife and himself. As the couple envisioned

what they felt to be important for their next chapter

of life together, they laid out their priorities: family,

community, and sunshine; lots of California sunshine.

The design began taking shape, and because his >>

60 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 61


specialty was restoring old buildings to their former

glory, Heinlein was the perfect choice for the project.

While the city’s stamp of approval was still wet,

Heinlein enlisted the help of Don Chaffin a Santa

Margarita-based builder, who the homeowner

describes as an “old school, great, terrific guy,” and

the vision began to materialize. While maintaining

the same basic structure at the front of the house,

two separate wings were added on which created a

courtyard. Previously, the lot had a significant slope,

but it was elevated and flattened with all of the soil

that was over-excavated to make way for the new

foundation. One wing now houses the guest quarters,

a one-bedroom, one-bathroom space with a separate

entrance, which features a forever rotating series of

kinfolk visiting the western branch of the Heinlein

family tree. The other wing serves as an extension of

the living space, including a family room and kitchen

separated only by a countertop and pass-through

window hemmed in by cabinets built by Green Goods

of San Luis Obispo.

Within a year, the project was complete. The only

thing left on the checklist is the installation of the

solar panels, which are going in soon. And, just like

the resurrected bungalow, Heinlein himself is on the

brink of a new beginning as he finishes up work for

clients, one in Boulder, Colorado, the other in Cape

Cod, and fully settles into his new hometown; the

magic happens—the professor knows—when the past,

present, and future come together as one. SLO LIFE

62 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


181 TANK FARM ROAD . SUITE 140 . SAN LUIS OBISPO . CA . 805-543-7600

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 63


| SLO CITY

REAL ESTATE

BY THE NUMBERS

laguna

lake

tank

farm

cal poly

area

country

club

down

town

foothill

blvd

johnson

ave

2017

Total Homes Sold

63

Average Asking Price

$721,043

Average Selling Price

$710,614

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price 98.55%

Average # of Days on the Market 31

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

Total Homes Sold

Average Asking Price

Average Selling Price

Sales Price as a % of Asking Price

Average # of Days on the Market

2017

26

$794,180

$784,342

98.76%

26

2017

30

$806,653

$798,300

98.96%

28

2017

15

$1,236,520

$1,196,623

96.77%

54

2017

81

$761,576

$755,866

99.25%

48

2017

52

$774,486

$759,596

98.08%

33

2017

52

$813,469

$804,663

98.92%

32

2018

61

$832,729

$818,281

98.26%

39

2018

24

$865,908

$850,259

98.16%

41

2018

23

$1,033,591

$996,653

96.43%

31

2018

18

$1,224,938

$1,181,888

96.49%

79

2018

49

$934,100

$923,903

98.91%

52

2018

42

$882,217

$868,022

98.39%

30

2018

58

$877,316

$861,368

98.18%

45

+/-

-3.17%

15.49%

15.15%

-0.29%

25.81%

+/-

-7.69%

9.03%

8.40%

99.10%

57.69%

+/-

-23.33%

28.13%

24.85%

-2.53%

10.71%

+/-

20.00%

-0.94%

-1.23%

-0.28%

46.30%

+/-

-39.51%

22.65%

22.23%

-0.34%

8.33%

+/-

-19.23%

13.91%

14.27%

0.31%

-9.09%

+/-

11.54%

7.85%

7.05%

-0.74%

40.63%

*Comparing 01/01/17 - 12/31/17 to 01/01/18 - 12/31/18

SOURCE: San Luis Obispo Association of REALTORS ®

SLO LIFE

64 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


New Year.

Fresh Start.

California’s brightest joins one of the

industry’s most trusted

We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve joined Guaranteed

Rate, a top 10 national retail mortgage lender, to take

your mortgage experience to the next level.

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• Low, low rates

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including low down payment options and Down

Payment Assistance programs

• A local, dedicated team for more efficiency,

increased capacity and superior customer service

• One of the most trusted lenders in the industry

with a 95% customer satisfaction rating*

Let’s keep the conversation going. Contact us today.

Donna Lewis

Branch Manager/VP of

Mortgage Lending

O: (805) 335-8743

C: (805) 235-0463

donna.lewis@rate.com

Rate.com/donnalewis

Maggie Koepsell

VP of Mortgage Lending

O: (805) 335-8742

C: (805) 674-6653

maggie.koepsell@rate.com

Rate.com/maggiekoepsell

Dylan Marrow

VP of Mortgage Lending

O: (805) 335-8699

C: (805) 550-9742

dylan.morrow@rate.com

Rate.com/dylanmorrow

3596 Broad St, Ste 106, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

*95% Customer Satisfaction: Data Source: Guaranteed Rate’s Client Satisfaction Surveys (Averaged 2007-2017)

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Donna Lewis NMLS # 245945, Dylan Morrow NMLS # 1461481, Maggie Koepsell NMLS # 704130

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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 65


You served us.

Now let us

serve you.

Reasons to consider a VA loan for

your home purchase:

• Loan amounts up to $2M

• Fixed rate and ARM options available

• 100% financing is available up to the

VA county loan limits

| SLO COUNTY

REAL ESTATE

REGION

Arroyo Grande

BY THE NUMBERS

NUMBER OF

HOMES SOLD

2017

335

2018

322

AVERAGE DAYS

ON MARKET

2017

59

2018

53

MEDIAN SELLING

PRICE

2017

$767,314

2018

$770,968

Contact me today to learn more.

Atascadero

405

358

53

48

$543,959

$570,549

Avila Beach

20

18

80

72

$1,070,260 $1,248,919

Cambria/San Simeon

160

167

86

73

$710,930

$771,684

Cayucos

64

59

117

101

$1,054,171

$1,134,737

Creston

14

11

82

147

$799,000 $930,909

Grover Beach

173

127

45

44

$516,687

$532,604

Ben Lerner

Mortgage Advisor

NMLS 395723

805.441.9486

blerner@opesadvisors.com

1212 Marsh St., Suite 1

San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Los Osos

Morro Bay

Nipomo

Oceano

130

144

256

55

148

148

295

47

35

62

60

53

65

65

53

50

$610,261 $745,706

$698,432 $745,706

$636,594 $684,294

$447,400 $508,600

Pismo Beach

146

140

56

78

$1,045,916

$969,197

Paso (Inside City Limits)

453

389

41

37

$487,861

$501,173

Paso (North 46 - East 101)

51

58

48

48

$487,640

$537,203

Paso (North 46 - West 101)

96

109

98

91

$556,116

$738,287

Paso (South 46 - East 101)

57

55

69

58

$712,373

$770,209

© 2019 Opes Advisors, A Division of Flagstar Bank

Member FDIC | Equal Housing Lender

San Luis Obispo

349

323

36

43

$797,410

$923,782

Available to eligible veterans. This is not a commitment to

lend. Program terms may vary based on the state or region in

which the financed property is located. Subject to credit approval,

underwriting terms and conditions. Programs subject

to change without notice. Program restrictions apply. Please

consult your tax advisor regarding the deductibility of interest.

Important information will be provided in the disclosures you

receive after we have received your application and the loan

documents you are provided at loan closing.

66 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

Santa Margarita

Templeton

Countywide

17

118

2,949

16

117

2,771

*Comparing 01/01/17 - 12/31/17 to 01/01/18 - 12/31/18

32 91 $415,753

52 77 $722,606

54 53 $653,295

$401,813

$814,894

$703,688

SOURCE: San Luis Obispo Association of REALTORS ®

SLO LIFE


At Semmes & Co. Builders,

we are guided by environment.

As pioneering green builders on California’s Central Coast,

we believe in building responsible, healthy and inspiring

living spaces – just as we’ve done since 1978.

743 SERRANO DRIVE . SAN LUIS OBISPO . $949,000

Beautiful describes this property, Hardwood and Tile flooring, Maple

counter tops with numerous built-ins including kitchen and through

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is low maintenance with mostly brick pavers, hot tub, pond with

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DRE 01031282

805-440-4593

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work like hell and advertise.”

- Ted Turner

on his secret to success

Call us. We can help your business grow.

805.543.8600

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SLO LIFE

magazine

Cheers – your garden drinks responsibly!

visit gardensbygabriel.com -or- call 805.215.0511

An activity of Gardens by Gabriel, Inc. · License No. 887028

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 67


| HEALTH

Taking the Plunge

why cold is so hot

It was noon sharp on the first day of the New Year in Avila Beach when

hundreds of revelers simultaneously sprinted toward the frigid waters of

San Luis Bay. Screams and shouts of shock and exhilaration were heard as

contact was made with the frigid 55-degree Pacific, and it left us wondering

from our perch on the pier above: Is the Polar Bear Dip good for you? Turns

out it is.

If history can serve as a guide, as it often does, then there are many accounts of people

jumping into cold bodies of water for the sake of their health. The Chinese, as it

turns out, have been doing this for years. The ancient Romans had a similar practice.

There are accounts of various Native American tribes who would dive into an icy river

following a sweat session in a superheated teepee, sometimes called a sweat lodge. And

cold-weather countries, such as Finland and Russia, have their own traditions that

continue to this day.

Today, here in the States, many big-name athletes swear by the ice bath that follows a

tough game. And, the motivational speaker Tony Robbins

has become so enamored of the benefits that follow the

freezing dunk that he has reportedly built something called

a plunge pool at each of his seven homes. In the case with

Robbins, as with so many other practitioners, he starts by

first cranking up the heat in his sauna. Then, it’s on to the

shock of the cold. And, it’s that hot-cold combination that

appears to jolt our hormones and circulatory system into

optimal performance.

We here at SLO LIFE Magazine became intrigued by the

whole concept and decided to dive (pun intended) into it

further with our decidedly non-scientific approach. Again,

we’re not doctors, and we’re not scientists, just curious

minds who like to know what is new and now in the world

of health. Here are a few things we learned… >>

68 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 69


#1

GEE, THAT’S SWELL

There’s that word again, inflammation. As research continues to show

up demonstrating that the root cause of so many of the diseases that

afflict modern-day human beings have their roots in chronically

inflamed bodies, the fix would seem simple: reduce inflammation. And,

that is precisely what a cold plunge does. The concept is no different

than applying an ice pack to a sprained ankle. What does that do

exactly? It reduces the swelling. And, what is swelling? It’s just another

word for inflammation. Think of jumping into the ocean without a

wetsuit as dipping your whole self into a big, huge ice pack. The result:

less inflammation.

#2

WIN-WIN

Those long, hot showers that Americans have adopted as a daily

practice may be doing a number on our skin, particularly those thin,

sensitive areas under our eyes known as “bags.” Some health and beauty

gurus swear by the cold shower, which is becoming en vogue with the

Hollywood set. It’s those bags under our eyes that make us look tired,

even when we are not. And, again, what causes those bags? Swelling.

And, what is swelling? Inflammation. Reduce inflammation, and you not

only become healthier, but you also become more beautiful. Win-Win.

#3

HAPPINESS HORMONES

In some circles, the cold plunge is referred to as cold thermogenesis and

may involve what the Russians call “dousing,” which traditionally was

done early in the morning and late in the day just before bedtime. The

reason: It lifts the mood. Think about those long, dark winters in the

upper reaches of the Northern Hemisphere. No sun. No trips out to Dog

Beach to let Fido run around while you soak in the rays. Depressing,

right? The effect on the mood appears to be significant, as the body

responds to the shock of the cold by releasing massive amounts of the

happiness hormones: endorphins and noradrenaline.

HUMAN POPSICLE

Cryotherapy is hot (um, we meant to say “cold”) and

appears here to stay. Already common in most big

cities, it may not be long before cryogenic centers start

to pop up here around the Central Coast. The person

receiving the therapy sits in a futuristic-looking tube

with their head sticking out of the top. Through the

use of liquid nitrogen, the air inside suddenly plunges

to -200 degrees Fahrenheit for a period of two to four

minutes. But, don’t worry, you’ll get the same benefits

from diving into the Pacific. And for free.

70 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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Alternating between cold and hot like Tony Robbins does by going to the sauna first before

taking a cold plunge appears to have an optimal effect on our circulatory system. In the most

simple terms, the heat causes our vessels to expand and open wide, while the cold prompts

them to tighten. This daily expansion and contraction routine strengthens the vessels and

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72 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

#5

CONTROL-ALT-DELETE

Aside from the endorphins and noradrenaline, there appears to be a cascade of beneficial

hormones that are released during a cold plunge. Although the research is scant in this

area, many practitioners describe a resetting of the endocrine system, which could mean

relief for hormone-related disorders. There have been some promising results documented

with metabolic disorders, such as Type 2 diabetes when it comes to insulin resistance

with one study finding a 43% increase in insulin sensitivity after participants switched

from taking a daily hot shower to a cold one for a period of six days. Just as when the old

PC starts getting wonky and acting up, a cold plunge may very well be the body’s way of

hitting Control-Alt-Delete. SLO LIFE


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| TASTE

USE YOUR

NOODLE

New and old purveyors offer an education in the ancient art of noodles.

BY JAIME LEWIS

n college, I probably ate my weight in ramen.

Each serving cost something like 19 cents and the

directions couldn’t be easier: place the hardened Icake of noodles into a bowl (or mug, or bike helmet, or...),

pour boiling water over to soften, and stir in the little pouch

of flavoring. Voila! Dinner is served.

Recently, ramen and other Asian noodle styles are trending

in American restaurants, but these aren’t the crusty pre-fab

packets from college days of yore. Like so many

other heritage foods, noodles have experienced

a renaissance in modern cuisine, transcending

humble origins to be obsessed over, played with,

and made unbelievably tasty.

Want to start slurping? Here in SLO County,

the options are plentiful. I visited just a few, both

new and not-so-new, to get my noodle on. >>

JAIME LEWIS writes about

food, drink, and the good

life from her home in San

Luis Obispo. Find her on

Instagram/Twitter @jaimeclewis.

74 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 75


THE INDULGENCE:

CHOW MEIN

At Chef Paul Kwong’s pint-sized Chinese noodle house,

Mee Heng Low in downtown San Luis Obispo, the vibe

manages to be both vintage and deliciously contemporary.

Watercolors of the Buddha eating noodles line the walls,

and classical music pipes over the stereo.

Likely one of the oldest restaurants in town, Mee Heng

Low stands beside the Palm Theatre on Palm Street, one of

the best dinner-and-a-movie gigs going. The building dates

back to the turn of the 20th century, still boasting a sign

that reads “Chop Suey.”

“Chop suey was invented here for the U.S. palate,” says

Kwong, who was born into an English-Chinese family.

It’s a fusion style of cooking, he adds, not a specific dish.

“Traditionally, it’s served with rice, but rice was rich man’s

food. Noodles were poor man’s food. So we serve chop suey

with noodles, instead of rice.”

Kwong’s son, Russel, brings me a plate spread with

crispy, thin yellow noodles, topped with seasonal

vegetables. I’ve ordered the chow mein with chicken,

vegetables and ginger-soy sauce. (Kwong also serves lo

mein; mein refers to noodles while chow means “fried”

and lo means “tossed.”) I tug at the fried noodle cake

with chopsticks, the dish melding into a thick jumble

of noodles, cabbage, scallions, and sauce, and proceed to

wolf down the whole thing.

Three people at a neighboring table rise to leave. As

the door closes behind them, Kwong tells me the group

includes the owner of the nearby tai chi studio. “He comes

in all the time,” he says. I could get into tai chi and chow mein

every day, I think to myself. >>

76 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 77


THE PURIST: SOBA

Just a few blocks away, Goshi offers a completely different sort

of ambiance. Set amid the sycamore trees behind The Creamery

complex, the Japanese eatery feels leafy and peaceful, a place

apart with paper lanterns and traditional music playing softly.

Most people visit Goshi for its sushi, including a Japanese friend

I bump into and two friends from the wine industry. Me? I’m

here for the soba, thin Japanese buckwheat noodles served in a

brothy soup called kitsune soba.

Borrowing the concept of noodles from neighboring China, the

people of Japan have eaten soba noodles since as far back as 300

B.C. A warm, comforting dish of soba, broth, and sweet-fried

tofu called abura-age, kitsune can also be ordered with ropy

wheat-flour noodles called udon.

The word kitsune means “fox” in Japanese, which I realize

refers to the amber color of the fried tofu in my bowl when

server Gustavo Santana places it before me. I add a few ruffles

of scallions and generously sprinkle the bowl with shichimi, a

red powder composed of chiles, spices, orange peel, seeds and

seaweed. Nutty and delicate at the top, the broth becomes richer

and more concentrated the more I slurp. Just over halfway

through my lunch, I am full.

When the check comes, I’m amazed at the total: just $8.45,

including tax, for one of the most satisfying and flavorful

lunches in SLO. >>

78 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 79


THE NOMAD: RAMEN

When Brian Terrizzi opened his pasta shop Etto last year, he had no idea he’d soon be

making ramen noodles right alongside bucatini and fettuccine. But the link between East

and West isn’t actually all that obscure.

“There’s a lot of debate about where pasta came from,” Terrizzi says. “Most experts think

it’s likely that Italians picked up pasta from travelers along the Silk Road, coming from

China.” Japan picked up ramen, too, and has developed its preparation into an artform.

So when Terrizzi’s Japanese-American friend, Anna Takahashi Gargani, suggested selling

ramen beside pasta, the idea didn’t feel so far-fetched. He and Gargani researched the

dish and eventually sourced ingredients to design a make-at-home kit to feed four people,

offered the first Thursday of every month. Since the program’s launch, ramen kits are

promoted via email and social media, and often sell out before the noodles are even made.

I pick up a kit to try composing ramen at home for my family on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Inside, it’s comprised of the noodles and pre-packaged servings of tare ( Japanese barbecue

sauce), shichimi, nori (dried seaweed), wood-ear mushrooms, scallions and Japanese candy

for a sweet ending. I follow the kit’s directions (including foolproof instructions for perfect

soft-boiled eggs to lay on top), and dish out a colorful, healthful, yet hearty lunch. Terrizzi

told me that each sip of the broth would become more and more concentrated, leading to

what he called an “umami-bomb,” and he is right. One twirl of precious, handmade noodles

begets another; each spoonful of broth grows successively meatier and more complex.

Best of all? My family gets to enjoy a veg-heavy lunch... and I get to take the credit.

SLO LIFE

80 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 81


| KITCHEN

BRAISED CHICKEN

When preparing this dish, you’ll be hard-pressed

to wait until it’s finished simmering to get a taste

of the rich, flavorful gravy.

BY CHEF JESSIE RIVAS

82 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


JESSIE’S TIP:

This dish is great for dinner parties because you

can cook everything up to the 20-30 minute

simmer and then turn off the heat and cover

until your guests arrive. Keep warm in a 350

!degree oven covered and serve when ready.

BRAISED CHICKEN

6 - 8 pieces of bone-in chicken thighs, wings, or

drumsticks with excess skin and fat removed

1 cup flour for dredging

1 Tbs kosher salt

2 tsp table grind black pepper

1 Tbs canola oil

1 Tbs olive oil

2 oz dried porcini (optional)

16-20 oz pearl onions peeled and halved or 1 onion sliced

8-10 cloves garlic peeled and smashed with side of knife

3-4 sprigs of thyme

6-8 whole sage leaves

1 bay leaf

1 cup red wine

1 ½ cup red wine vinegar

1 cup chicken stock

1 tsp ground allspice

2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

2 cups cremini mushrooms cut in half

¼ cup rough chopped flat leaf parsley

Mix flour, salt and pepper for dredging. In a 12” deep

fry pan add both oil types and heat to medium high

heat. Dredge chicken in flour mixture and add to

fry pan one piece at a time. Sear to a golden brown

on both sides. Remove chicken and set aside. Drain

excess oil and add dried porcini mushroom, garlic,

onions and sauté on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add

chicken, herbs, red wine

and vinegar to fry pan.

Bring to a boil then add

chicken stock and reduce

to a simmer. Add allspice,

Worcestershire sauce

and cremini mushrooms.

Cook on low simmer for

20-30 minutes or until

sauce is reduced by half.

JESSIE RIVAS is the owner

and chef of The Pairing Knife

food truck which serves the

Central Coast.

Serve with polenta or your

favorite mashed potatoes

and top with chopped

parsley. SLO LIFE

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 83


| WINE NOTES

DEEP RED

Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre grape varietals—also known as GSMs—from the

Central Coast have received considerable recognition worldwide. Visitors arrive here

to sample them, and to meet their makers. Cabernet Sauvignon, on the other hand,

has been renowned in Napa and Bordeaux, but not traditionally here on the Central

Coast. That is starting to change, however, and the California Cab has been making

some noise in the industry as of late. The secret is out, but our local vintners have

known it for years. Brace yourself for homegrown Cabernet Sauvignon.

BY ANDRIA MCGHEE

Austin Hope // Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 // $50

What makes a Cab? On the vine, it is deep purple in color. A

relatively small grape, it features a tough skin, which puts up a

good fight to frost and also combats any rot that may appear in an

unexpected late rain. You can see why it can be a farmer’s favorite.

The vines grow in a warm environment where the hot sun will

urge the grapes to produce by day, while the cool night comes in to

create the deep complex flavors. The soil is often chalky, white, and

light brown dust. Your shoes will be dirty after a walk through the

vineyard. Sounds like Paso, right? This is where the good Cabs thrive.

This bottle from Austin Hope Wineries in Paso Robles was a treat

that a friend passed along to me when visiting my old hometown.

It made me proud to see such an example enjoyed by someone who

has yet to visit the vineyards here. It is made purely of Cabernet

Sauvignon. This is one of those bottles

that you uncork to drink with a hefty

steak, like a ribeye, and continue

enjoying while you visit with company

around the table after dinner.

In the glass, most Cabernet Sauvignons

will appear thick with a glowing ruby

red hue. This particular wine entices

with its deep cherry appearance. It’s

the phenols that come from the grape

skins, seeds, and stems that produce the

beautiful color. They can also take credit

for the complexity of taste as well as

for preserving a bottled wine over time.

The sight of that particular shade of red

makes anyone’s mouth water. >>

ANDRIA MCGHEE received

her advanced degree in

wines and spirits from

WSET in London and enjoys

travel, food, wine, and

exercise as a means to enjoy

those around her.

84 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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Edna Valley Winery // Meritage 2015 // $40

Cabernet Sauvignon tastes great on its own and also plays

together well with other grape types. Have you ever seen the word

“Meritage?” Look for it when you are shopping because it means

that a winemaker was having even more fun than usual. You can

almost substitute the word Meritage for “mixture” or “blend”

because it means that it will consist of two or more red grape

varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot,

among others. Why these grapes in particular? They are the grapes

that have been blended in the Bordeaux region of France for so

many years to enhance the flavors of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Edna Valley Winery has a great example of Meritage right here on

the Central Coast. The first taste conjures a bing cherry, as well as

a slight hint of raspberry and blueberry. Though it’s easy to get a

“hot mouth”—the burning sensation that sometimes accompanies

alcohol of deep red wines—it will not happen here. Instead, you get

the pleasure of a smooth, velvety texture. It has such an elegant taste

that it could be paired with a meaty braised short rib, or on its own

as you linger late into the night with a special group of pals.

Even without wine critics to tell us how great the Cabs are, we

can simply taste it for ourselves. The recognition for all of the hard

work that our region has done in the last 15 to 20 years in wine is

lovely indeed. The upcoming 2016 vintage (remember, these wines

take a couple of years to debut) in Cabernet Sauvignon is already

creating quite a buzz, so keep your eyes and taste buds ready for

more exquisite, homegrown deep red Cabs in your future.

Ancient Peaks // Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 // $18

Early picked Cab can taste faintly of green vegetables: asparagus

or green bell pepper. Picked too late and it can carry the flavor of

a heavy, jammy fruit explosion. A mid-range Cabernet Sauvignon

should taste velvety and smooth with flavor colors of brick red and

deep blue, reminiscent of late harvest dark cherries, blackberries,

and blueberries. You may even detect some different spices, such as

cedar, and sometimes vanilla.

Ancient Peaks is as impressive in taste as it is in price. Cabs are

known for being expensive, so enjoy this one on a weeknight in

with a grilled eggplant dish or a robust stew. No question here,

you don’t have to wait for a fancier occasion—be here now, in the

moment. Savor the lasting echoes of blackberries with this Cab

along with some faint, woody tones of a distant campfire. SLO LIFE

86 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 87


| BREW

the

shake

down

BY BRANT MYERS

Folks, we’re being robbed blind right in

front of our eyes. That’s right, someone is

taking precious beer from us. And what

is beer but liquid gold? I hope I have

your attention because this epidemic

needs to stop. Let me dive into the

highly contentious topic: the pint glass.

The ubiquitous Shaker Pint glass,

widely used in bars and restaurants

to serve everything from ice water to iced tea, is being used

to serve your beer. My beer better come with free refills if this

maddening practice continues! Okay, I need to calm down and

start at the beginning. For those of you that are not calling your

congressperson, taking to the streets in protest, and burning malt

bags on the steps of the Capitol like myself, the Shaker Pint

is something you have seen a thousand times, but likely never talked about. It’s

a simple conical glass with straight walls and a taper of about one inch from the

wide mouth at the top to the narrow bottom a half-foot later. A self-proclaimed

“American Pint,” the Shaker gets its name from the original use, as a vessel to pop

into a stainless steel cocktail shaker then open slightly to drain into a cocktail glass.

So, how did a bar utensil become a serving vessel? Well, like many of our antiquated

liquor laws still on the books, this piece of work is a holdover from Prohibition

where most small breweries serving beer in traditional glassware specific to their

country of origin went bankrupt. Traditional small German and Belgian breweries

serving tulips, half-pints, and mugs went belly-up, and the only breweries remaining

after the repeal were the mass manufacturers of the fizzy yellow stuff that is still

being made to this day. Afterward, very few customers cared about what they were

drinking and how they were drinking it once the bars reopened, so any glass was

tolerated. Bar owners liked the new Shaker Pint due to its sturdy sidewalls, low

cost, and especially the ability to stack them high, which increased bar space. Fast >>

88 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


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forward 90 years, and we are still stuck with these abominations

of proper glassware. Politics may have changed, but bars and

restaurants still see the bottom line with a catch-all glass that’s

cheap, sturdy, and stackable.

Now that we have some background let me return to my rant

regarding this highway robbery. What does the Shaker Pint take

from us? The first act of theft: enjoyment. Any thick glass will

instantly begin to transfer the ambient warmth of the glass itself

into your beer while simultaneously removing the cold from the

beer to chill the glass—basic heat transference principles at work

(and, if you think the Shaker gets me riled up, ask me about

chilled/frosted glasses). The second element of theft is that wideopen

mouth at the top of your glass. Where is the head retention

for the foam, the place where all the aromatics play for your

enjoyment with every quaff? That beer may have a thin line of

white stuff on top resembling a 7th grader’s mustache when it’s

set down on your table, but take one sip, and it’s gone. So now

you have a warm, flat beer beginning from the moment it was

poured. Aroma, mouthfeel, carbonation, temperature—all gone

thanks to the larcenous Shaker Pint.

Now, for the last, and worst, theft of our liquid gold reserves: the

beer itself. You see, as opposed to a 20-ounce British Imperial

Pint (more on that in a minute) the Shaker is 16 ounces, which

is the proper U.S. liquid pint amount, so what is the issue here?

Well, friends, you’re getting a 14-ounce pour into that glass to

account for the fleeting foam in addition to the room at the top

to make sure nothing spills while it’s getting to you. That’s twelve

percent of your “pint” gone because of this antiquated mixer

carried forward from nearly a century ago. Please don’t serve my

food on a floor tile, my wine in an old pickle jar, or my beer in a

bar utensil.

You see, the proper pint is one served in a 20-ounce glass. Order

a bourbon barrel-aged stout, fruited sour, or double IPA and you

should get a smaller pour in a tulip glass, but order a pint and

you’ll want the best vessel your money can rent. My opinion on

the best pint glass is one commonly called a Nonic; it has a thin

sidewall for temperature retention that has been strengthened

with a slight bulge to trap aroma and comes with the added

benefit of acting as a grip for when you’ve had a few. You can

pour 16 ounces into them all day, have a nice thick foam layer,

and still leave a little gap to keep the bar dry. The tops are also

less prone to chipping hence the “no-nick” name, and they stack

without sticking.

Sure, I have Shaker Pint glasses at

home, my guests use them all the

time for their water, and my toddler

loves his juice with the fun brewery

designs on the outside. Would I ever

drink a beer out of them? Well, you

can pry a Nonic glass out of my calm,

temperature-correct, frugal hands

because at least I’ll die happy with

twelve percent more beer in my belly.

So, next time you order a beer,

remember to stand on the bar top and

begin your chant: “No Shaker! Nonic!”

What could go wrong?

SLO LIFE

BRANT MYERS is a 13-year

veteran of the Central Coast

craft beer industry who

enjoys sharing his passion

with anyone who doesn’t

put an orange in their

hefeweiezen.

90 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


No matter what your fortunes are,

Dr. Daniel will give you the smile you need

to make your dreams come true!

Specializing in Smiles

Dr. Daniel Orthodontics

1356 Marsh Street . San Luis Obispo

(805) 543-3105 . drdanielortho.com

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 91


| HAPPENINGS

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FEBRUARY

PLEIN AIR PAINTING

Morro Bay Art Association

is proud to present renowned,

local artist, Ken Christensen,

for a two-day workshop.

Christensen is a classic, on-site

landscape painter influenced

by French Impressionists and

Fauves.

February 8-9 //

artcentermorrobay.org

SLEEPING BEAUTY

The more than 50 dancers of one of

Russia’s foremost ballet companies

imbue vibrant performances with the

timeless tradition of classical Russian

ballet. This full-scale production of

composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovski’s

crown jewel is sumptuous in its scope,

featuring choreography by Russia’s

legendary Marius Petipa.

February 10 // operaslo.org

COMEDY NIGHT

Weekly comedy show at

Bang the Drum Brewery

featuring touring and local

comics all for one dollar.

Plus beer, food truck, and

raffle giveaways.

February 7 - 28 //

bangthedrumbrewery.com

CO-CREATION PROJECT

Robert Thies brings the perfect balance

of drama and lyricism needed for

Beethoven’s Piano Concerto #4. He then

takes you on a tender and introspective

journey with Debussy’s Girl With The

Flaxen Hair to which the artworks of the

evening are beautifully choreographed.

Orchestra Novo, led by Michael Nowak,

will also be performing Aaron Copland’s

delight-filled and romantic Appalachian

Spring.

February 10 // orchestranovo.com

MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET

This Tony Award-nominated musical

is inspired by the legendary recording

session on December 4, 1956, when an

extraordinary twist of fate brought Johnny

Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and

Elvis Presley together at Sun Records

in Memphis for what would be one of

the greatest jam sessions ever. In this

blockbuster musical experience, the actors

play the instruments, sing the songs and

take on the characters of these four icons

of popular music. Million Dollar Quartet

brings that legendary December night

to life with an irresistible tale of broken

promises, secrets, betrayal, and hit songs

like Blue Suede Shoes, Walk the Line,

Sixteen Tons, Hound Dog, and Great

Balls of Fire. Celebrate the kings of rock

‘n roll at our Million Dollar Gala Night

on Friday, February 15th. Enjoy a preshow

reception featuring generous hors

d’oeuvres, martinis and wonderful Central

Coast wine.

February 8 – March 10 // slorep.org

92 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


NONAME

Noname (born Fatimah Warner) is

an American artist from Chicago,

Illinois, who blurs the lines of

poetry and rap through the music

she creates. Noname released her

debut project entitled “Telefone”

which was 3 years in the making

and highly anticipated by fans and

media alike. Instantly the project

gained critical acclaim with a rave

review by Pitchfork and landing

her praise from major outlets like

Rolling Stones, Complex, and Dazed

& Confused. Special Guest Elton

will open the show.

February 20 // eventbrite.com

NOTABLE ENCOUNTER

Join music director Scott Yoo for an encore

presentation of his Notable Encounter

exploring Bach’s second partita for solo

violin. He will take you on a one-hour

tour behind this masterpiece for the violin,

which has been dubbed the “Everest” of

the violin repertoire. He will discuss Bach’s

life, the historical context of the work, and

will offer his own perspectives on learning

and playing the piece. Scott will conclude

the evening with a full performance of the

entire Violin Partita.

February 21 // festivalmozaic.com

SENIOR DISCOUNT . Mon & Tues 10 to 2 . $15

1351 Monterey Street . San Luis Obispo

(805)783-2887 . clippersbarber.com

Dr. Arnie Horwitz

HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS

Are you feeling overwhelmed

and confused? I can help.

Specializing in

- Relationship Conflicts - Parenting & Self-Esteem

- Separation and Divorce - Personal Life Planning

- Grief and Loss - Career Uncertainty

Therapy/Counseling/Coaching

Dr. Arnie Horwitz • 30 yrs. Experience

805-541-2752

www.doctorarnie.com

SLO CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL

Celebrate the brewers of craft beer

and raise a toast to their unique and

wonderful creations. Enjoy special

beer and food pairings as well as

educational beer seminars.

February 22 - 23 // slo-beer-fest.com

WE SHALL OVERCOME

Inspired by the words and actions of Dr.

Martin Luther King Jr. and curated by

musical director, multi-instrumentalist,

composer and conductor Damien Sneed,

We Shall Overcome showcases a repertoire

from across the African-American music

traditions that electrified generations

of civil rights activists and defenders.

Interwoven with spoken word from Dr.

King’s recorded speeches, an awe-inspiring

assemblage of vocalists tie together a living

lineage of music and culture that includes

traditional gospel, modern gospel, classical,

jazz, Broadway and spirituals.

February 27 // pacslo.org

Join us for the greatest

jam session in history!

FEB 8 – MAR 10

Wed-Sun@7 pm / Sat-Sun@2 pm

San Luis Obispo Repertory Theatre

888 Morro Street, San Luis Obispo

slorep.org • 805.786.2440

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 93


| HAPPENINGS

ART AFTER DARK

Art After Dark is a free evening of art,

community, and culture! Enjoy this selfguided

tour of galleries and non-traditional

art venues (think salons, jewelers, museums,

etc.) showcasing the work of local visual,

literary and performing artists. Held the first

Friday of the month in downtown San Luis

Obispo and surrounding neighborhoods.

March 1 // eartsobispo.org

PINE NEEDLE

BASKET WEAVING

Head to the SLO Botanical Garden

and explore the art of pine needle

basket weaving in the Oak Glen

Pavilion. Artist Elizabeth Bear will

guide attendees through the process

of creating beautiful, fragrant and

sustainable pieces of artwork at

this intimate workshop. “A basket

reflects the person who makes it…

There’s no machine that can make a

basket,” states Ms. Bear. Just bring

sharp scissors, imagination and a

bagged lunch, as Ms. Bear provides

all materials as well as her masterful

insight. Each participant will make

their own basket and start a second

basket to complete at home. This

intimate workshop also includes a

lecture on sustainable harvesting

and tree kindness.

March 2 // eventbrite.com

94 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

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MARCH

HOPE FOR THE HOMELESS

GOLF TOURNAMENT

Sponsors, raffle donors and teams

are needed for our 5th Annual Hope

for the Homeless Golf Tournament

presented by Pismo Beach Golf

Course. All proceeds from this event

support the efforts of the 5Cities

Homeless Coalition to transform lives

for individuals and families who are

homeless or at risk of homelessness in

South County. Register your 5-player

team online or complete and return

a 2019 Player Registration Form no

later than February 22.

March 2 // 5chc.org

THE MISEDUCATION OF THE AMERICAN ELITE

SLO Classical Academy will host William Deresiewicz, the best-selling author

of “Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a

Meaningful Life.” As a professor at Yale, Deresiewicz saw something that troubled

him deeply. Some of the nation’s brightest minds were adrift when it came to

thinking critically and creatively and finding a sense of purpose. “Excellent Sheep”

takes a sharp look at the high-pressure conveyor belt that culminates in the skewed

applications Deresiewicz saw firsthand as a member of Yale’s admissions committee.

It is essential, says Deresiewicz, that college be a time for self-discovery, when

students can establish their own values and measures of success.

March 7 // sloclassical.org


First Presbyterian Church is committed

to expressing our love of God through

inspirational worship.

First Service: 8:45am

Education Hour: 10am

Second Service: 11am

childcare available

981 Marsh Street

(corner of Marsh and Morro)

fpcslo.org

FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 95


| HAPPENINGS

PACIFIC COAST CLASSICS:

BIG SUR INSPIRATIONS

An evening to change the way you think about classical music

with electric violinist Tracy Silverman. The evening will also

feature Schumann’s No. 4—a widely interpreted piece, frequently

subjected to modifications in tempo, orchestration, and expression

by conductors; making every live performance of the piece a unique

experience. And enjoy a tribute to the Central Coast with Dharma,

which features a huge range of percussion instruments, including

a set of tuned gongs, keyboard samplers, and even two flower pots

composed by Pulitzer Prize-winner John Adams.

March 9 // slosymphony.org

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MARCH

CAYUCOS SEA GLASS FESTIVAL

As one of the premier events on the

Central Coast, visitors come from all over

the country to enjoy a weekend of local

artisan goods, fun in the sun, live music,

and of course an extensive marketplace

of the finest sea glass art. Whether a sea

glass fan or someone looking to learn

about this world-wide hobby, the festival

has something for everyone.

March 9 // cayucosseaglass.com

LADYSMITH BLACK MAMBAZO

No group is more closely identified with African song—some might say with world

music itself—than this vibrant South African nine-member vocal ensemble. Since

1987, when they were introduced to mainstream America with the release of Paul

Simon’s groundbreaking Graceland album, these African troubadours have traveled

the world with the uplifting, polyrhythmic harmonies of their homeland. The

group has won five Grammy Awards, including one this year for Best World Music

Album for their recent Shaka Zulu Revisted release.

March 12 // pacslo.org

SAN LUIS OBISPO

INTERNATIONAL FILM

FESTIVAL

Film, wine, fun—The San Luis

Obispo International Film Festival

will once again attract stars,

great films, and film and wine

enthusiasts to the Central Coast

of California, as it celebrates its

25th annual festival. A premier

six-day annual event, the SLOIFF

showcases contemporary and classic

film screenings in a wide variety

of venues, from the city’s classic

art deco Fremont Theatre, to the

popular independent Palm Theatre,

as well as a number of unexpected

venues from the wine country of

Paso Robles to the seaside towns of

Avila Beach and Pismo Beach.

March 12 - 17 // slofilmfest.org

96 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 97


| HAPPENINGS

MONTY PYTHON’S SPAMALOT!

This outrageous musical comedy is lovingly ripped off from the film

classic, “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” with script by original Python

Eric Idle and music and lyrics by the Grammy Award-winning team of

Idle and John Du Prez. Follow the tale of King Arthur and his Knights of

the Round Table as they embark on their quest. Flying cows, killer rabbits,

taunting Frenchmen, and bright, show-stopping musical numbers are just a

few of the reasons audiences worldwide are eating up Spamalot!

March 14 // pacslo.org

MARCH

ZINFANDEL WEEKEND

Once a year Paso Robles toasts our heritage variety, Zinfandel. The 3-day

celebration features winery events, a Zin seminar, and the Z After Party, pairing

Zin with dessert and live jazz.

March 24 // pasowine.com

98 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

15TH ANNUAL MARCH

TRIATHLON SERIES

The Cal Poly Triathlon Team is hosting

the 15th annual March Triathlon Series

at Lopez Lake in Arroyo Grande. All

proceeds from the event go directly to

the team to help provide athletes with

discounted race entries and travel fees

to other collegiate races throughout

California, as well as Collegiate

Nationals. Online registration closes

March 21 and is open to anyone over 13

years old.

March 24 // marchtriathlonseries.com

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CATTLEMEN’S WESTERN

ART SHOW & SALE

The nationally renowned 29th art show

and sale will be held at the Paso Robles

Event Center. This show offers all original

art that has not been displayed at the show

before. This highly successful national show

includes 50 extremely talented professional

western artists. All the artists will be

available to meet and talk to the public

during all hours of the show. Don’t miss the

Friday Night Reception or the Cattlemen’s

BBQ Saturday and Sunday. Proceeds go

to sponsor agricultural activities for 4-H,

FFA, and Cal Poly.

March 29 -31

cattlemenswesternartshow.com


FEB/MAR 2019 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | 99


HOMECOMING

starts with Haven Properties.

For generations, people have turned to Better Homes &

Gardens for guidance on how to live the lives of their

dreams. From skyline to shoreline and everything in

between, Haven Properties is here to help you find the

perfect home in which to bring those dreams to life.

BHGREHaven.com

805.592.2050

100 | SLO LIFE MAGAZINE | FEB/MAR 2019

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