Goleta is famous for its lemons. And Stow House is where the lemons began. In fact, Stow House was where the first commercial lemon orchard in all of California was planted, 3000 lemons in 1875. Lake Los Carneros, next to the property, was created as a source of irrigation.
Three generations of Stows lived in the beautiful Carpenter Gothic house on the property after William Stow purchased the land for his son Sherman Stow, who built the house in 1872. The gardens are magnificent, with huge old trees and tropical-looking banana groves. Come for a tour of the house on weekend afternoons, then take a stroll in the gardens and around the many sunny trails at Lake Los Carneros.
Tours make the house come to life, as you learn about the family members who lived here. One of the Stow girls didn't want to part with her piano during her honeymoon so she had it carted around the world with her!
The house and gardens are often used for special events:
Every Sunday from 11-2, there are barn animals, tractor rides, and outdoor games!
On first Sundays of the month, there are free live concerts from 2-4pm in the garden. It is blissful and sheltered amongst the banana grove and the musicians are good. Happy Goletians come, bringing picnics with them.
In October, the Old-Time Fiddlers Convention is held here, with a stage by the banana grove (Oct 8, 2022). It's great to sit on the lawn and listen to the musicians compete.
PEP holds a Halloween event for the toddler crowd at Stow House.
Stow House hosts a Christmas event that includes a photo with Santa, making cookies in the old-fashioned kitchen, hot cider on the balcony, live chamber music, rein-goats to pet, and Christmas ornament crafts (Dec 10, 2022).
December is the best time of year to visit the house because it is decorated beautifully for Christmas.
The garden would be a beautiful place to get married.
While you're here check out the South Coast Railroad Museum, on the same property.
A fun place to visit after is Captain Fatty's Brewery, which has a large open-air interior with modern decor. They have delicious brews- I liked their sour beer. People gather here in the afternoon to chat at the abundant tables inside. There is a couch and table with games kids can play such as dominoes.
Stow House is located at 304 North Los Carneros Road, Goleta CA 93117, call (805) 681-7216.
Exit Highway 101 at Los Carneros Rd and head toward the mountains. After Calle Real, the house is on your right, behind the South Coast Railroad Museum. There is plenty of parking.
Store open weekends 1-4pm. Tours of house are weekends at 2pm and 3pm, $5 donation.
Missed the festivities. In San Diego, where the city was covered in fog. Very jealous!!!! Home to Santa Barbara tonight. )
Last Updated: Sat, 19 Aug 2023 16:23:29 GMT