Staff Report

The annual Santa Ynez Valley Polo Classic, benefiting Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People, will return to Happy Canyon Vineyard at Piocho Ranch in Santa Ynez on Saturday, June 29.

The event will include high-goal professional women’s and men’s matches with a preliminary junior competition.

According to even coordinator Erica Valdés, there are many ways, at various price points, to watch the event.

“All the venues for the matches at Piocho provide spectacular up-close viewing. Only the amenities vary,” Valdés said.  “You can view the fast-paced action from luxury VIP boxes including champagne reception and sit-down lunch; beer and wine club seating; and economy general admission.”

Local resident Joel Baker, the Polo Classic’s “play coordinator” and a long-time “high goal” professional polo player, is once again recruiting the teams and players.  Baker said he expects that again this year the event will include some of the best and most celebrated male and female players in the world.

The Barrack Family, owners of Piocho Ranch and sponsors of the Happy Canyon Vineyard team of polo professionals, will host the Polo Classic for the fourth consecutive year.

“We are thrilled to once again host this fantastic event,” said T.J. Barrack. “Each year the event has been extremely well organized, highly attended and has delivered a display of world-class polo. My family is proud to support our community and the great efforts of People Helping People in this way and embrace the expanded opportunity to promote the sport we love at the place we love.”

According to Nancy Hunsicker, PHP board member and Polo Classic co-chair, the success of the Polo Classic is due to the collaborative efforts of community leaders, dedicated volunteers, and generous corporate and small-business partners.

“We hope that even more folks will attend or volunteer and that additional businesses will step up as sponsors,” she said. “You don’t have to be a fan of or expert in polo to enjoy the beautiful setting and the competition, speed, and horsemanship professional polo players display.”

VIP, Patron, Club, and general admission tickets are available at Contact Valdés at for patron pricing and availability.

General admission tickets are $15 each and $5 for children under 12. They include nearby parking and shaded seating close to the action.  Food and beverages, including beer and wine, will be available for purchase.

Tickets, volunteer opportunities, and more information are available online at or by calling Valdés at 805-686-0295.