Tuesday, May 22 , 2018, 6:01 pm | Partly Cloudy 65º


Tradition Reigns at Old Spanish Days’ Recepción del Presidente

El Presidente Josiah Jenkins hosts a gathering of past and current Fiesta leaders as well as hundreds of other celebrants

[Click here for a Noozhawk photo gallery from the event.]

Old Spanish Days El Presidente Josiah Jenkins kept tradition alive and well with Sunday's Recepción del Presidente at Fess Parker’s DoubleTree Resort's Plaza del Sol.

The late-afternoon affair featured a wide assortment of Fiesta costumes, an authentic Mexican menu, and wonderful dance performances by 2013 Spirit of Fiesta Corrie Jimenez, Junior Spirit of Fiesta Kailani Cordero and others. Many costumed guests were seen dancing away the evening as the sun set on the ocean across the street on Cabrillo Boulevard. Both live mariachis and a DJ supplied musical entertainment throughout the evening.

El Presidente Jenkins got the party started by sauntering on horseback into the rotunda on "Homer." This year’s El Presidente says he is no "city slicker." Jenkins has had a longtime association with Old Spanish Days, especially the Fiesta Stock Horse Show and Rodeo. He recognized his father, Si Jenkins, and mother Karen for instilling in him the tradition of Fiesta. The family owns the western shop Jedlicka’s.

Si Jenkins was an active participant in the Fiesta Stock Horse Show and Rodeo. He won a headstall in the 1950s at Pershing Park, before the Earl Warren Showgrounds were built. He was an organizer and announcer at the rodeo for years. Karen Jenkins has been in the Fiesta parade many times and provided horses to other Presidentes over the years. In fact, the 2013 Old Spanish Days poster features Si and Karen Jenkins as the two riders in the art piece. The apt poster theme is “Vaqueros y Vaqueros."

“I want to take the opportunity to express my appreciation for my parents — my father Si, at 80 years young, and my mother Karen, who is the number one groom in the land — feeding, watering, cleaning and exercising the horses daily," Josiah Jenkins said. "It is because of their love and assistance that I have been able to play such a big part in the community for so long. I wouldn’t be how I am today if it wasn’t for them.”

Of course, it takes village to raise a Fiesta, and the all-important sponsors were recognized for their generous support.

The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians was acknowledged for its solid support and sponsorship. Impulse Advanced Communications commanded another top sponsorship spot and was represented by a full table with President Dave Clark and his wife, Colleen. Sponsor Union Bank also had a friendly and enthusiastic table hosted by CEO George Leis, Randy Weiss, Felicia Sutherland and others.

Other important supporters included Noozhawk, Cox Communications, the City of Santa Barbara, Jordano’s, MarBorg Industries, KEYT, Paseo Nuevo and La Cumbre shopping centers, Business First Bank, Montecito Bank & Trust, Albertsons, Classic Party Rentals, Pacific Beverage, Brown & Brown Insurance, FLIR, Service Master, Luners, Fess Parker’s DoubleTree Resort, Bartlett, Pringle & Wolf, the Santa Barbara News-Press and others.

In all, 19 past El Presidentes were present at this year’s reception, including Bill Redding, Joanne Funari, Kris Kallman, Kelly Magne, Tim Taylor, Michael Mendowz, Herbert Barthels DDS, William Luton Jr., Roger Aceves, Ruth Kallman (representing the beloved Bob Kallman) and many others.

The 2013 Spirit of Fiesta Corrie Jimenez dedicated her opening dance to her great-uncle, 1976 El Presidente Rudy Castillo (the oldest of the Presidentes at the reception), who attended the event with her proud parents, Carlos and Debbie Jimenez. Corrie will be starting her senior year at San Marcos High School this fall.

Now in its 89th year, Old Spanish Days unofficially starts with the El Reception del Presidente. After the mercados, parade and concerts, the celebration closes on Sunday with the West Coast Symphony’s 46th Annual Fiesta Concert. Viva la Fiesta!

For a complete event schedule or for more information about Old Spanish Days, click here, call 805.962.8101 or email [email protected].

Noozhawk contributing writer Rochelle Rose can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter: @NoozhawkSociety and connect with Noozhawk on Facebook and Pinterest.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Supporter

Enter your email
Select your membership level

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >