The community gathered recently for Santa Barbara Channelkeeper’s 21st Blue Water Ball at the Cabrillo Pavilion to celebrate the organization’s work on clean water and to generate support for current and future programs.
Dressed in varying shades of blue, guests enjoyed views of the Santa Barbara Channel with cocktails on the pavilion terraces.
Jazz music from the Dave Vignoe Trio and keyboardist Mel McGary underscored the seaside ambience. Chumash elder and firekeeper Art Cisneros led a blessing in Chumash and English honoring the ocean, sky, and the sparks of spirit within everybody.
During the dinner hour, an auction was held while the three-course meal was laid out.
Guests at the Blue Water Ball were given embroidered beach towels and chocolate truffles.
Branden Aroyan’s large-scale art installations were displayed while Executive Director Ted Morton summarized Channelkeeper’s impacts. Dr. Benjamin Halpern also gave a keynote address about healthy oceans in a changing climate.
“This year’s Blue Water Ball was a terrific, fun event,” said Executive Director Morton. “We were thrilled to bring supporters together to celebrate Channelkeeper’s accomplishments and the positive impact that we are making in our community.”
Santa Barbara Channelkeeper is a nonprofit that aims to protect and restore the Santa Barbara Channel and its watersheds through science-based advocacy, education, field work, and enforcement.
“Climate change is the most significant challenge of our lifetime,” said Mr. Morton prior to the keynote speech. “Channelkeeper’s Board recently approved a five-year strategic plan that sets out a course to do more to ensure that the Santa Barbara Channel and its watersheds, and the
people and wildlife that depend on these areas, are able to counter and adapt to the intensifying impacts of climate change.”
This year’s Blue Water Ball raised more than $130,000 to protect local beaches, creeks, and coast, and defend the community’s right to clean water and healthy habitats.
The funds raised at the Blue Water Ball support programs that monitor creeks and coastal waters, organize volunteers for community cleanups, provide educational experiences for local students about water quality and habitats, and advocate for policies to ensure clean and safe water and habitats.