Mission Statement

This page is meant to function as a community hub for those that love the Funk Zone. It is also a resource to help publicize Funk Zone events, and to raise awareness generally about the value of the history, architecture,  and community that is unique to this neighborhood.  Through open dialogue and public meetings we hope to help those that live and work in this neighborhood flourish.

Anyone who would like to publicize their events on this page or for general questions regarding the Funk Zone, please contact Nathan Vonk: nathan@sbartsblog.com


13 responses to “Mission Statement

  1. Thanks for this very eloquent and thoroughly considered comment, James. This is clearly something we should discuss at the next meeting.

  2. With all due respect James, I like Funk Zone.
    Consider Keep Austin Weird, New York’s Dumbo or Lompoc’s Warehouse Wine District. It shows a juxtaposition of the culture which can be found in the rest of Santa Barbara. In order to keep the illusion of something different, something with spirited energy, I like that we already have a name. Just sayin. Hope others will chime in.

  3. Hi James, great being your neighbor !
    I’m torn on this subject. I understand exactly what you’re saying and a lot of it I agree with. However, when I mention to people or friends around town that I live in the “Funk Zone” their reply is usually: ” Oh that’s so cool, I LOVE that area, it’s got so many things to explore and discover”.
    If you’re completely serious about a name change per se, I would be willing to support any efforts to go before the City of SB and “Officially” get a written statement or motion that clarifies it as a “dedicated zone of the City of Santa Babarara” with a different name associated with it.
    I’m glad you started this conversation and I look forward to hearing more.
    On a side-note yet one that needs mentioning; now that I live on Yanonali directly across the street from your kitchen/business, I notice on a Constant basis the use of the nearby surface streets as a “speedway or shortcut” from one part of town to another. Especially Yanonali from State to Calle Cesar Chavez. It’s ridiculous. I think the speed limit is 25 or 30. I’ve seen motorists zooming past my house and your kitchen doing at least 50 or more.
    With all of the recent activity in our city (unfortunately) related to Pedestrians being hit by motorists (including fatalities) it really upsets me that our neighborhood is claimed by some local residents as their own personal “cross-town freeway”.
    How many more local resident pedestrians or tourists need to be injured or killed until Our City ends dangerous speeding in our area and all other areas within the city limits?
    Talk to you soon,

    Stuart Sterling.

    “Funk Zone” resident.

    • Hi Stuart,

      I just wanted to apologize for not getting your message approved sooner. I have it set up (or so I thought) to receive emails when people leave comments, but apparently that feature isn’t working. I’ll be looking into it so this doesn’t happen in the future.



  4. Greetings Everyone!

    I spend quite a bit of time traveling around the country for work, music festivals, etc. and whenever i mention that i’m from Santa Barbara to people that i come across…whether they have been to Santa Barbara or just know of it, they always seem to mention the Funk Zone and never in a negative way. I love the name and think it represents something fun, hip, and chic in Santa Barbara!

    Look at all the great people related to FUNK:

    James Brown
    James Joseph Brown was an American singer , songwriter, musician, and recording artist. He is the originator of funk music and is a major …

    George Clinton
    George Clinton is an American singer, songwriter , bandleader, and music producer and the principal architect of P-Funk. …

    Bootsy Collins
    William Earl “Bootsy” Collins is an American funk bassist, singer, and songwriter. Rising to prominence with James Brown in the late 1960s …

    I am an event planner in the City of SB and i relish at the opportunity to host events in the FUNK ZONE and can’t imagine it being called anything else…

    My 2 cents.

    Warner Anderson
    Event Director @ Plus One Events and the New Noise Music Foundation

  5. Hello fine Funkers:
    This is a valid discussion in that there is an opportunity during this conceptual limbo to redraft/reframe the title and brand of this potent part of town; and yet… why would we? It is a distinct, iconic, and already common part of local vernacular that has extended well beyond the confines of our town. To Laura’s point, many of the arts districts across the globe are singled out as such, because they were repurposed districts with industrial, marine, meat packing, mining, ghetto historical orientations. I can’t imagine a business or entity that is, or could potentially be situated in the F%#@-zone that would be so image crucial to its clientele that an adjective like “Funk”, could tarnish whatever services it provides… It’s not as if it will be forcibly placed in the title of every winery, firm and store.. it just defines a neighborhood; ie. Hell’s kitchen doesn’t seem to discourage the presence of moral people, commerce, and churches… likely the same inverse effect would be the case for our interests here. If anything, The Funk Zone enhances the space as a recognizable title suggesting something eclectic, dynamic, and open to interpretation. That to me sums up the very ideal of a sector yearning for entrepreneurial development, public interest, and associated surging property values… so much so that many of us may regret that success in the not too distant future.
    I look forward to seeing you all again with ideas, and presentation art in hand. The collective content we sew now may be the catalyst for this town to show up on many people’s radars that might have otherwise written this town off as a bastion of the retired and placid. We are much too active and interesting for that! regards, mark goerner

  6. Ciao Mark– nice input and appreciated fodder for my consideration for certain. It is a unique moment in time we occupy with regards to the development of this area of town and the more thoughtful and integrated actions and ideas that we can contribute as a collective body the better. And including the residential aspect, influence and character that they provide to the area seems to be a realistic and, personally, appreciated inclusion.

    Very best to all– and I hope that you all come and enjoy our pop-up dinning on the 6th of October…. James Johnson, Events Unlimited Organic Kitchen

  7. An object crafted in the hands of an artist radiates the quality and care put into it’s creation. While an object created through production may look similar, it will never express this element of soul. When I look around at the buildings here, there is still soul in the architecture and this leads me to believe that this quality has been important to all residents for quite some time.

    Community wealth is not just the numerical value held but also it’s quality of soul, diversity and skills which exist in the people of that community. I might assume that the standard model of development will include some facet of beauty in the architecture, I am also certain it will make the Funk Zone financially inaccessible to the specific, artistic soul which made it attractive in the first place.

    While the ideas presented in the recent Charrette might be considered the “dreaming” stage of planning, an alternative development model exists which could begin shaping this dream into reality without the need for the private investment which may ultimately gentrify the area.

    Through this model, community wealth can be leveraged to buy, build and own, moderate to low income live/work studios, to reinvest in existing businesses and build new ones. The “wealth” stays IN the community where it continues to build according to the vision set by the people who make up this community.

    What I am looking for specifically in posting this letter would be to locate and bring together, visionary people who are interested in creating a plan of action built from an existing and successful community wealth building strategy, adapted to fit the collaborative vision and needs of this community.

    I would be honored to present these ideas in more depth,


    • Hi Jon,
      Love your concept and want to hear more. There is a group meeting at the Municipal Winery on 2/22 at 3pm and I think you may have some people willing to get on board. Additionally, I will be down there this week end with the change over of the AMASS Gallery at Mason and Helena Streets. Call me and we can get together for a coffee when I am down there. 886-1540

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