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Monday, January 21 , 2019, 10:58 pm | Partly Cloudy 52º


Alex Kacik: New Carrillo Street Business Brings Creative Approach to Social Therapy

KnitFit owner Debbie Carty expands from Solvang to Santa Barbara, taking over the former Affordable Go Karts and Ducati location

Taylor Carty suffered a stroke in utero that impaired her motor skills. When she was growing up, there weren’t any social therapy options, so her mom decided to create her own.

Debbie Carty taught her daughter how to knit and invited her friends. After jumping around coffee shops to teach arts and crafts for five years, she opened a KnitFit storefront two years ago in Solvang and expanded into 320 W. Carrillo St. in Santa Barbara about a month ago.

“Whether you are 5 years old or 85, it gives you a safe place to come and enjoy yourself,” Debbie Carty said. “We use crafting to break down all the barriers. You learn to make something here and are invited to stay and play.”

KnitFit has taken over the former Affordable Go Karts and Ducati location that features about 1,700 square feet. Carty said that while she understands there’s not much foot traffic, the Carrillo Street exposure and word-of-mouth go a long way, adding that every kid needs a guaranteed play date.

“When we were mobile, all kinds of people were coming and that’s when I realized that it’s not just my daughter that needed this therapy,” she said. “It was a mom that is overwhelmed, or a 5-year-old that is bullied. Everyone has special needs.”


Gourmet burger restaurant Eureka Burger will open on the corner of Chapala and De la Guerra streets in Santa Barbara. A San Luis Obispo manager told me that it will open across from Silvergreens in September.

Cincinnati native Nick Fontova and his partners Justin Nedelman, Paul Frederick and Ron Guidonestarted started the California burger chain in 2009, according to its website.

Eureka Burger has five other stores that offer burgers, such as a fig marmalade burger and a Caesar burger, as well as sandwiches, salads, wines, desserts and a rotating selection of beers.


Coull, a video advertising network based out the United Kingdom, has purchased the Santa Barbara-based online marketing agency RevUpNet for $2 million.

John Greathouse started RevUpNet, which produced more than $60 million in sales during the past three years, Coull’s blog reads.

Coull, which is the sole video partner of Google Affiliate Network, will use RevUpNet to break into the U.S. market, according to Webb Capital CEO Peter Webb.

“As a result of this acquisition, we are well-positioned to build on recent client wins, including Sears, Puma and Under Armour,” he said. “We expect 50 percent of our business to come from the U.S. within the next 12 months. Video is the fastest-growing sector within online advertising, and Coull is positioned to take a market lead in Europe and U.S.”

New Addition

Kathleen Kalp has joined Montecito Bank & Trust as vice president and senior portfolio manager.

The Goleta resident has nearly 30 years of experience in financial analysis and has worked for research, mutual fund and banking firms in Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and Phoenix. She will report to Senior Vice President/CIO Peter Madlem.

“Her extensive experience in investment research, portfolio construction and private-client asset management constitutes a remarkable addition to our wealth management department,” Madlem said.

Business Boost

Business leaders at the South Coast Business Forum discussed a new program that would highlight local startup ventures, called “Start It In Santa Barbara.”

The forum focused on the next Startup Weekend Santa Barbara planned for Nov. 2 and Startup Santa Barbara. Startup Weekends focus on creating technology-related businesses in a 54-hour weekend, and Startup Santa Barbara provides a national platform for mentoring, funding and business development.

“I’ve never seen so much activity around business and entrepreneurship in the Santa Barbara area,” Kyle Ashby of Kaldera Marketing said.

On the Bubble

CasaBubble is a company in Santa Ynez that started selling portable living spaces in April.

Pierre-Stephane Dumas designs inflatable spheres that are made out of lightweight PVC and powered by air, according to the company’s website. The fully pressurized small spaces are designed for outdoor guest rooms, play areas or dining spaces and are available in 30 colors. There are five sizes that weigh from 53 to 190 pounds.

They use less than 100 watts of electricity per hour and can be inflated in as little as 15 minutes. The bubbles are manufactured in France and constantly refresh the air through quiet turbines to prevent condensation.

“Dumas designed his bubble to give the occupants the experience of sleeping under the stars in all the comfort of a hotel room,” the site reads.

Noozhawk staff writer Alex Kacik can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @NoozhawkBiz, @noozhawk and @NoozhawkNews. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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