Noozhawk is privileged to be a sponsor of the ninth annual Westmont President’s Breakfast on Feb. 28 at Fess Parker’s DoubleTree Resort. This year’s speaker is microfinance pioneer and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Muhammad Yunus.

We’re holding a drawing for two tickets at the Noozhawk table — but the offer is exclusive to our Hawks Club members. If you’re not a member, click here to join or scroll down this page for more information. We’ll pick a winner on — appropriately — Presidents’ Day.

The breakfast is 7 to 9 a.m. Feb. 28. Doors open at 6:45 a.m. Click here to purchase tickets independently.

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 What were you reading on Noozhawk this week? It was kind of a weird one.

1. Arrest Made in Attempted Kidnapping of Teen Girl

Felipe Cruz: Hands off, pal. (Santa Maria Police Department photo)

Felipe Cruz: Hands off, pal. (Santa Maria Police Department photo)

A 16-year-old Santa Maria girl was minding her own business the night of Feb. 5, walking along North Broadway with two girlfriends. According to Santa Maria police, a driver cruised past the trio several times then parked his car near Taylor Street. That’s when things got creepy.

Sgt. Eligio Lara said the driver, later identified as 25-year-old Felipe Cruz, walked up behind the young women and approached the 16-year-old.

“He grabbed the victim’s buttock with one hand, and grabbed the victim around the shoulder and chest with the other hand,” Lara said. “The females fought Cruz and ran away.”

The young women were able to provide a description of the suspect and the car, complete with license plate number. Officers quickly tracked down Cruz and arrested him on charges of attempted kidnapping and sexual battery. He was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail.

2. Woman Safe After Threatening to Jump from Overpass

A woman tried to climb out on the Las Positas Road overpass the afternoon of Feb. 7, and the commotion forced Santa Barbara police to shut down the northbound lanes of Highway 101 for about 10 minutes to avert a crisis.

Sgt. Bryan Jensen said police were called to the scene about 3:30 p.m. after passers-by saw the woman on the outside of the safety fence on the south side of the bridge.

When officers arrived, Jensen said, they found that a good Samaritan had climbed out onto the ledge with the woman, and was holding on to her wrist, trying to dissuade her from jumping. A police officer made contact with the woman and convinced her to return to safety.

The woman was transported to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital for evaluation.

Click here for free suicide prevention resources that are available 24 hours a day.

3. Mark Shields: Big Man on Campus Chris Christie Getting Smaller Every Day

As the MSM have exhaustively reported, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie may or may not have used the IRS to intimidate and harass his political opponents used a bogus traffic study to clog a highway through a political opponent’s town.

Mark Shields: I’m serious, this isn’t about me.

Mark Shields: I’m serious, this isn’t about me.

Channeling his inner Lucy Van Pelt, political psychologist Mark Shields has diagnosed Christie’s seemingly vindictive proclivities to how he behaved … back in high school. Or some such.

Personally, I care about Christie about as much as I do about New Jersey traffic, but I got the distinct sense that this Shields column may have been more autobiographical than analytical. His vivid character descriptions seemed rather deep-seated.

Regardless, I am grateful to Shields — and Christie — for tying up traffic on Noozhawk for days. Feel free to do it again this week!

4. Santa Barbara Declares Drought; Montecito Water District Approves Mandatory Restrictions

With the drought dragging on, South Coast water agencies are getting serious about their action plans, many of which appear to be more like re-action plans. The City of Santa Barbara is focusing on water conservation, asking residents and businesses to reduce their use by 20 percent. The Montecito Water District just approved mandatory restrictions.

As our Giana Magnoli reported Feb. 11, Santa Barbara’s Water Resources Department has turned to a broker to find water for sale, and the City Council has approved $3.3 million to purchase additional water.

Interim water resources manager Joshua Haggmark said Gibraltar Reservoir is being drained and the city plans to drill wells in the silt to try to get additional water out of it. As water levels continue to sink downstream at Lake Cachuma, the Cachuma Operation and Maintenance Board is considering an emergency pumping project.

Through a series of resource swaps, water that has been stored and stashed throughout the Central Coast is gradually being piped toward Santa Barbara, with the first allotments expected by July.

Things are much less settled in Montecito, where district general manager Tom Mosby said the outfit will run out of water by July if usage stays the same.

New mandatory restrictions prohibit watering yards in the middle of the day, bar the refilling of swimming pools and demand that restaurants only serve water if diners request it. Mosby said the measures aim to cut total usage by 30 percent.

Violators may be fined up to $1,000, and the water district has the authority to install flow restrictors on the service lines of noncomplying customers.

5. Dr. Scott Saunders: How Do I Know If I Have Candida?

I don’t know about you, but candida isn’t high on my list of topics for conversation. To be honest, I didn’t even know it was the big-boy term for a yeast infection.

Dr. Scott Saunders’ candida candor keeps the readers coming.

Dr. Scott Saunders’ candida candor keeps the readers coming.

But one of our advertisers, Dr. Scott Saunders of the Integrative Medicine Center of Santa Barbara, knows all about it and took the time to explain the fungus among us in one of the health columns he occasionally writes for us.

That was back on Jan. 1, 2013.

For the last 13 months, we’ve noticed the consistent presence of that column in our Google Analytics, not infrequently drawing a couple of hundred reads a day. Once in a while someone, somewhere links to it and the traffic spikes. Such was the case last week, and the candida column has been rocketing up the chart for the last seven days.

The column is well worth a read. After all, as Dr. Saunders notes, an estimated 75 percent to 90 percent of people get a candida infection at some time in their lives. Noozhawk readers will know what to do.

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A real student of the Civil War, Robert “Bob” Duncan rarely missed a battle re-enactment as a weekend warrior.

Always faithful, Bob Duncan never tired of reporting for duty. (Duncan family photo)

Always faithful, Bob Duncan never tired of reporting for duty. (Duncan family photo)

But the Korean War-era Marine veteran was just as dedicated to preserving the memory and honor of those who fought and died in more recent conflicts. He almost single-handedly rescued and relocated the Summerland Veterans Memorial monument and flagpole to a prominent location in the heart of the seaside village.

Bob was also a builder, a longtime Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District board member and an amateur photographer who frequently shared his pictures with Noozhawk — often from veterans’ events.

He died Jan. 29 at age 79.

A celebration of Bob’s life will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Feb. 22 at Lions Club Park, 6197 Casitas Pass Road in Carpinteria.

R.I.P and Semper Fi, Bob. Thank you for all that you did for veterans and for Noozhawk.

                                                                        •        •

Shirley Temple Black, perhaps the most iconic and popular child star in Hollywood history, died Feb. 10 at age 85. This chaotically comedic scene with Cary Grant and Myrna Loy from The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer never gets old.

(Kartina Richardson video)

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There were 68,035 people who read Noozhawk this past week. If you value our unmatched breaking news and in-depth reporting on the issues that you care about, please support our experienced staff of professional journalists and help us continue to provide a vital forum for the community.

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— Bill Macfadyen is Noozhawk’s founder and publisher. Contact him at, follow him on Twitter: @noozhawk, or click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

A dark-haired man in glasses with a beard and a mustache smiles at the camera

William M. Macfadyen, Noozhawk Publisher

Bill Macfadyen is Noozhawk’s founder and publisher. Contact him at, and follow him on Instagram: @bill.macfadyen. The opinions expressed are his own.