Cristal's Blog


April 20, 2024

Back to Articles

"The Earth does not belong to us: we belong to the Earth." - Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Environmentalist and Journalist.

In the heart of the coastal gem that is Santa Barbara, the community is gearing up for the annual Santa Barbara Earth Day Celebration. Scheduled for Saturday, April 29th from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, April 30th from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Alameda Park, this event is organized by the Community Environmental Council (CEC) in collaboration with CarpEvents, the festival's long-standing partner. Free to attend, the festival promises to be both enlightening and engaging. Plus, Santa Barbara has bragging rights when it comes to celebrating Mother Earth since our community played a significant role in the inception of Earth Day itself.

A view of the earth from space

Santa Barbara's Earth Day

The Earth Day 2024 Celebration in Santa Barbara represents the culmination of over five decades of tireless environmental activism and advocacy. Since the inaugural Earth Day in 1970, Santa Barbara has been at the forefront of the environmental movement, spearheading initiatives, and championing causes to protect our planet's precious resources.

The theme for this year’s festival resonates with the Earth Day Network: "Planet vs Plastics." The focus is on raising awareness about plastics' detrimental impacts on our planet's health and rallying for significant actions, including the phase-out of single-use plastics and advocating for a robust UN Treaty on Plastic Pollution by the year's end. 

Booths lined up at Santa Barbara Earth Day with electric cars and people in the foreground.
Photo courtesy of CEC

A Call to Action

Dynamic and multifaceted, this year’s event offers a wide array of exhibits, presentations and more. From hands-on workshops on sustainable living practices to thought-provoking panel discussions on pressing environmental issues, attendees will have ample opportunities to deepen their understanding of our planet's challenges and explore innovative solutions.

Key features include the longest running Green Car show in the United States offering attendees the opportunity to test drive the latest electric vehicles and bikes, featuring brands such as Audi, Chevrolet, and Polestar. Visitors can also learn about California rebates, federal tax credits, and other incentives, while engaging with electric vehicle enthusiasts.

The Public Square serves as a hub for networking and interaction with organizations dedicated to environmental initiatives, providing the opportunity to connect with elected officials and gain insights into the sustainability efforts undertaken by government agencies and nonprofits.

Additionally, there will be climate-smart agriculture talks and demonstrations by local farmers and food producers, food and beverage artisans, small business owners, and non-profit organizations. Plus an Eco-Marketplace offering a wide variety of eco-friendly merchandise, live music, free bike valet services, a variety of culinary delights at the food court and beer and wine garden, and a dedicated kids’ corner.

At the heart of the Earth Day Celebration is a sense of urgency, a recognition of the critical juncture at which we find ourselves in the fight against climate change. Organizers emphasize the pivotal role of the current decade in shaping the trajectory of our planet's future, underscoring the need for immediate and decisive action to curb carbon emissions and mitigate the impacts of global warming.

Bill Nye on stage with a presenter, getting an award in Santa Barbara
Photo courtesy of CEC

Santa Barbara's Role in Environmental History

The roots of Earth Day run deep in Santa Barbara's soil, intertwined with the region's rich environmental history. The catastrophic blowout of Union Oil Platform A on January 28, 1969, marked a turning point. Over 3 million gallons of oil spilled into the Pacific Ocean, leaving a devastating impact on marine life and coastal ecosystems. Witnessing this ecological tragedy firsthand, local activists sprung into action, catalyzing the birth of Earth Day. Senator Gaylord Nelson, moved by the environmental devastation visible from above, spearheaded the inaugural Earth Day in 1970, igniting a global movement for environmental conservation. Watch this report from legendary Newsman Walter Cronkite regarding the first Earth Day.

Since then, Santa Barbara has emerged as a leader in environmental stewardship, pioneering innovative solutions to complex environmental challenges. From implementing sustainable practices in agriculture to advocating for renewable energy initiatives, the community continues to lead by example and inspire action at local, state, and national levels.

A young father and a toddler looking at green plants and flowers at Santa Barbara Earth Day festivities.
Photo courtesy of CEC

The Fight Continues

As the world grapples with escalating environmental challenges, The Santa Barbara Earth Day Celebration serves as a rallying cry for individuals, businesses, and policymakers to unite in safeguarding our planet's future. Participation in Earth Day 2024 is not merely symbolic but a tangible step towards effecting meaningful change. By engaging with experts, joining local initiatives, and advocating for policy reforms, individuals can contribute to a sustainable, resilient future for generations to come.

Want to celebrate Santa Barbara’s Earth Day as a “local” next year? If you're considering relocating to Santa Barbara, Montecito, or surrounding communities, don't hesitate to reach out for assistance in finding your dream home. Whether you're looking to buy or sell, I'm here to help. You can contact me at (805) 886-9378 or email me at This Earth Day let’s all remember the works of Margaret Mead, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." Let's take this moment to reaffirm our dedication to both the planet and one another, and to pave the way towards a brighter, greener future in your new home.

Of Related Interest:

Back to Articles

Client Reviews

“It was an emotional experience selling our mother’s home in Montecito that we all loved so much but Cristal made the process easier on our whole family by guiding us through the transaction every step of the way. She knows the market so well and everything she recommended was on point including the asking price, painting, and staging the home, which looked beautiful and helped the buyer envision her new home. We sold it the first day it hit the market with an offer above asking! Cristal did an incredible job communicating with us and the buyer to ensure that the transaction would run smoothly. We highly recommend using Cristal, she was a pleasure to work with! ”

- J & A

“Cristal is a pleasure to work with! Her knowledge of the local real estate market coupled with her amazing listening skills resulted in her showing us an array of homes that were all excellent choices. Her low-pressure patient attitude made us feel extremely comfortable with the whole process. I cannot recommend her highly enough.”

- M.F.

“Cristal Clarke is #1 in her field - and you don't become #1 by luck. Cristal works harder, and longer, and with more charm and patience than any real estate agent I have ever worked with in the past; her calendar has no weekend, her days have no clocks, her only concern is selling your property as soon as possible and for the best price on the market. Am I a fan? You bet!”

- P.B.

“We have used Cristal now several times and cannot express how grateful we are for her expertise, dedication, and unwavering support throughout the entire home-buying process. Cristal is knowledgeable, patient and attentive. Her attention to detail is remarkable, and she consistently went above and beyond to provide us with all the information and resources we needed to make informed decisions. Cristal is a skillful negotiator and advocate. She can navigate complex negotiations with professionalism and grace and felt like a true partner to us in the home-buying process. Cristal has a genuine passion for real estate and a deep commitment to her clients' satisfaction. I cannot speak highly enough of Cristal and her exceptional service. She is a true expert in her field and her dedication to excellence, combined with unwavering support is the reason we choose to work with her for all our real estate buying needs.”

- T.C.

“Cristal is a top-notch realtor who sold my home before it ever went on the market. I had two competing offers that enabled me to get top dollar for my home. Not only is Cristal superb but her team is extraordinary. I cannot say enough about Cristal and her team. They are simply phenomenal, the consummate professionals, who took care of every possible detail, making the sale and transition period, smooth from our end. They are also lovely, caring people, who knew all the right professionals, to get the job done. Thank you, everyone!”

- D.R.

“I could list lots of cool adjectives to describe Cristal. All good by the way. But, that is not why I or anyone should hire Cristal. My reason for hiring her, which proved to be correct, is very simple. She got the job done. And, she does it time and time again and with zero issues. And, that is why she is one of the top agents in the country. End of subject. ”

- M.A.

“Working with Cristal was a complete pleasure. Cristal was extremely patient with us as we evaluated nearly 2 dozen homes over a span of 2 years. Her knowledge of the market is unmatched. Cristal provided us with exceptional counsel as we evaluated opportunities and negotiated pricing. The closing process was handled thoroughly and efficiently. We could not be happier with our purchase and even more happy to now call Cristal our friend.”

- D.K.

“Cristal Clarke has conducted numerous real estate transactions for me beginning 13 years ago with the purchase of a Lemon Ranch. She has handled both large and small purchases and sales with equal dedication. As a negotiator, you can’t find anyone better. Her transactions are always conducted in the most appropriate and professional manner. Cristal has considerable knowledge of the Santa Barbara market.”

- S.N. Decker Ph.D.

“Living in Europe, we were to say the least, unaccustomed to the nuances of Real Estate acquisition in California and Cristal steered us through the process with absolute professionalism and personal attention to detail at every turn. Her in-depth knowledge of the market place combined with enthusiasm and drive was the only reason we secured the property of our dreams and will be forever grateful. If you are looking for personal discrete and private representation of the highest quality we suggest you look no further than Cristal Clarke.”

- Johan and Paula van den Berg

“Cristal is very straightforward, cheerful, helpful, professional and trustworthy….we felt very lucky to work with her.”

- John and Lacey Williams

“After considering our many choices, we are grateful it was Cristal Clarke of Sotheby’s International who represented the sale of our Montecito cottage. We are familiar with Cristal’s reputation of hard work and dedication to clients, but it was her attention to detail that made our experience so positive. She offered suggestions for staging the property, worked in harmony with potential buyers and was even able to secure back up offers. The sale of our cottage was completed much sooner than we expected, due in great part to Cristal’s professional skills and support. We highly recommend Cristal as a first choice for anyone needing representation with real estate.”

- Michael & Nancy Lee

“Our experience in working with Cristal Clarke resulted in the successful and discrete acquisition of a property which was not yet on the open market. Her knowledge of the Montecito/Santa Barbara area and vast expertise blended with her passion for real estate and architecture, provided us with the very highest level of professionalism and personalized services. Cristal exhibited a rare combination of excellent communications, attention to detail, creativity and patience.”

- Richard and Catherine Frinier

“Cristal really breaks the mold. She knows every nook and cranny of this real estate market, understands value, and follows up on everything, all the time. She was incredibly patient with our two year quest to find the perfect house. Every house hunting trip from across the country was well planned, and our time was never wasted. On top of her professionalism and expertise, she is delightful to spend time with. We are thrilled with the home we purchased, and grateful to Cristal for so wisely advising us through this process, right through to the close and beyond.”

- Laurie Siegel

“We met Cristal first in the course of renting a winter home (for three years), then buying a house using her as our agent. She was amazingly good at listening to our wants and showing us homes that fit our needs. Her mastery of the paperwork was perfect. Most importantly, there was never a situation where we doubted her straightforwardness or integrity. If we do another real estate transaction in Montecito (which I doubt, we’re happy with what we purchased), without question we’d use Cristal again.”

- Ken Saffir

“Susan and I just want to thank you for your efforts in the sale of our home. You are really quite amazing. Your competence, persistence, optimism and humor made the entire process effortless. Every problem that arose, you somehow fixed; any obstacle, you overcame. We have bought and sold many homes. It has never been such a painless and enjoyable process!”

- Michael & Susan Marquart

“A little something about “our” realtor, Cristal Clarke. My wife and I came to Santa Barbara about fifteen years ago looking for a seasonal home from which to enjoy the weather and amenities of the central coast. Being in the real estate business myself I was familiar with agents and brokers so entered the market with open eyes. We “flipped” a few houses in the early years, dealing with various agents and finally ended up in Montecito. That’s when good fortune put us together with Cristal. To say we were impressed is to put it mildly. Cristal really knows the market. She is familiar with the area, its history and trends. When we have questions about a particular property she either has the answers immediately or gets back to us by phone or email. There is no waiting or wondering with Cristal. She is an agent who is “on top of it.” Her recommendations as to price points, contractors, inspectors and title agents have proven to be exceptional, showing great insight and the highest professional standards. We consider ourselves exceedingly fortunate to say that Cristal Clarke is our realtor and would recommend her services to any serious buyer or seller.”

- Rob & Judi Kelch