Sunday, August 1, 2021     Volume: 22, Issue: 22
55 Fiction

Cover Story

55 Fiction


Our annual short story contest winners include tales about death, money, and love It doesn’t sound like much, but 55 words can cover a lot of ground. The shortest stories in the universe tie up lose ends, surprise people, kill people, and love people. This year’s stories were cheesy, mushy, dark, funny, and sad—some talked about Trump, COVID-19, aliens... [ Read More ]

Top 5 Articles

News: Veterans say fireworks affect them beyond July 4
News: Political Watch: July 29, 2021
News: Public Health pleads with locals to get COVID-19 vaccine
News: Dignity ends Anthem contract after other insurance disputes
Cover Story: 55 Fiction


Slow The Virus

Veterans say fireworks affect them beyond July 4

By Malea Martin

Local veterans say fireworks are a multi-month ordeal in Santa Maria. Matthew Woody, a local resident and veteran, spoke during public comment at a July 20 Santa Maria City C...

Dignity ends Anthem contract after other insurance disputes

By Camillia Lanham

As of July 16, Central Coast residents insured by Anthem Blue Cross lost in-network coverage at Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria, Arroyo Grande Community Hospital...

Public Health pleads with locals to get COVID-19 vaccine

By Malea Martin

Public health officials urged community members to get vaccinated as Santa Barbara County experiences soaring COVID-19 case rates, hospitalizations, outbreaks, and deaths. The...

Political Watch: July 29, 2021

• On July 19, Assemblymember Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo) announced that his Assembly Bill 841 was signed into law. The legislation aims to help keep foster chil...


Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Project opens program to help build charging stations

By Camillia Lanham

San Barbara County has close to $5 million available as part of a $12 million effort to get roughly 1,000 new electric vehicle (EV) chargers installed in Ventura, Santa Barbar...

Cannabis Corner

Guadalupe works to establish commercial cannabis permit application criteria

By Kasey Bubnash

Guadalupe is working to flesh out the finer details of its recently passed cannabis ordinance, and although that process might take slightly longer than initially expected, po...


Neglected minor crimes lead to larger quality-of-life crimes that rot the core of society


In September 2017 in a locally published commentary, I observed “Broken windows; Lompoc is full of them”; this commentary was based on a theory by social scientist...


Public parody


If I could point out one thing that’s wrong with our health care system right now, it’s this: A health care system that essentially has a monopoly on providing ser...


Elwin Mussell Senior Center hosts upcoming dance concert

By Caleb Wiseblood

The Santa Maria Valley Senior Citizens Club presents Let’s Dance, a special dance concert featuring live music from the Riptide Big Band and vocalist Bob Nations, at t...

805 Wave hosts comedy, barbecue fundraiser supporting United Way of Northern Santa Barbara County

By Caleb Wiseblood

805 Wave is hosting a special comedy night fundraiser at Willow Ranch in Nipomo on Saturday, Aug. 21. Doors open at 6 p.m. A portion of the event’s proceeds will be dona...

SLO NightWriters hosts Zoom talk with local authors Wendelin Van Draanen and Mark Parsons

By Caleb Wiseblood

Husband and wife Mark Parsons (author of Road Rash) and Wendelin Van Draanen (creator of the Sammy Keyes series) will discuss their respective careers in children’s li...

PCPA returns to the Solvang Festival Theater with an uplifting concert revue, 'Together: A Musical Journey'


It’s 8 p.m. and the sun is setting, but George Walker’s got enough sunshine in his pocket to light up an amphitheater during his cover of Justin Timberlake&rsquo...


‘Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain’ celebrates a life and mourns a tragic death

Morgan Neville (Won’t You Be My Neighbor, 20 Feet From Stardom) directs this documentary about revered chef, writer, and TV host Anthony Bourdain, known for authentic ap...


Flying Goat Cellars scores recent wine competition awards


Founded in 2000, Flying Goat Cellars is technically, legally old enough to drink its own wine. While 2021 marks this local winery’s 21st year in business, birthday wishe...

Hot Stuff


The Classical School of Ballet (CSB) presents Dancefest 2021 at the Lompoc Civic Auditorium, with performances on Friday, Aug. 6, at 7 p.m., and on Saturday, Aug. 7, at 1 and ...


Greener Pastures Farm Sanctuary in Arroyo Grande will be open to the public for self-guided tours on Saturday, Aug. 7, from noon to 2 p.m. Visitors will be able to meet the re...


Gallery Los Olivos’ latest duo exhibition, Inside/Outside, will be available to view through Saturday, July 31. This showcase features impressionistic paintings by oil a...


Judd Manor in San Miguel presents The Grapes of Laughs, a live stand-up comedy show, on Saturday, July 31, at 8 p.m. Comedians Andrea Abbate (pictured), Jill Turnbow, and Sara...


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Weekly Poll
Does Santa Maria have a fireworks issue?

Yes, and it's negatively affecting veterans, pets, and people with noise sensitivity.
We could crack down more on illegal ones, but it's fun for the Fourth.
No! If anything, I should be able to set off fireworks year-round.
We need to find the right balance between fun and safety.

| Poll Results

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