Editor’s note: This letter to the editor, intended for publication, was addressed to News-Press staff writer Neil Hartstein, who has been reporting on Flightline Restaurant at the Santa Barbara Airport.
Thank you for the detail in your article. I’m a former Santa Barbara resident who has great memories of the former Elephant Bar and High Sierra (restaurants in the same location).
I shared the following comments on the topic on my Facebook page:
“This story is so frustrating in several ways. It shows just how idiotic my old hometown has become in their governmental ignorance. Three years of revenues to the city never appeared.
“Also, when this was opened as the Elephant Bar way back in the 1980s, my Dad did some of the drafting design work on the facility. Dec. 31, 1983, the day I passed my private pilot checkride, after promising myself I’d finish before the end of the year, my Dad took me and the family here for a celebration lunch.
“I ate lunch here with my Mother before she and I left town to drive her to the East Coast to live with my sister after my Dad had passed. The last time I ate here was with my Uncle Joe, Aunt Nancy and Uncle Mike.
“I met Mr. (Warren) Butler on a visit and had a nice chat with him. The memorabilia collection he had of military and civilian aviation as well as other military material, at times made the restaurant seem more like a fascinating museum than an eatery. The Flightline was always on my to-do list when I’d visit my hometown.
“I’ll always have the memories of walking the building and seeing my Dad’s design work, and sitting around a table with family and friends as a newly-minted 17-year-old pilot. That was so much fun. Such great memories.
“I sincerely hope that the government of my hometown can get their act together and get moving to properly utilize this incredible resource. I’m sure the FBOs would both be happy to do joint referrals and pursue other win-win scenarios.
“I hope the people of Santa Barbara press hard on the government where, if they do intend to adjust the master plan, they get their collective (butts) moving and do it before flushing cash flow down the tubes each month.”
MSgt, USAF, retired
Founder, Guard The Constitution