Staff Report

During September, children from the Santa Ynez Valley responded to local libraries’ invitation to draw a bookmark based on the theme “A Friend is…” Those entries are now on display to the public at both Buellton and Solvang libraries and all of the drawings have been printed into free bookmarks for library visitors to enjoy.

A blind panel chose the following entries as standouts in these age categories: 

Ages 3 and under: Jack Rushing (Oak Valley Preschool); 

Age 4: Remy Arthur (Family School); 

Ages 5 and 6: Justin Martinez (Solvang School), Maddie Nichols (home school) and Gray Rushing (Oak Valley Preschool); 

Ages 7 and 8: Lucas Goodman, Felicity Hume, Couper Nichols (all home school) and Branwen Van Dam (SYV Charter); 

Age 9: Norah Hirth and Macie Ann Martinez (both of Solvang School); 

Ages 10-12: Alison Hume and Colton Paulson. (both homeschool).

The following notable entries earned special participation awards: Bronson Ballinger, age 5; Hollis Van Dam, age 5; Dalston Kay, age 6: Gus Ballinger, age 8; Danaka Cantrell, Tatum Kay, Stella Libera and Everly Nunez, all age 9.

The contest was sponsored this year by the Friends of the Library of Santa Ynez Valley and Blenders in the Grass. The Friends of the Library of SYV fund programs, materials and extra library staff hours: visit their donor page at 

For information on programs and events the Goleta and Santa Ynez Valley libraries, see the calendar at, or look up the Solvang and Buellton libraries on Facebook.