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Summerland Information

History of Summerland

When Summerland was founded as a Spiritualist colony in 1889, terraced streets lined with small lots that sold for $25 apiece replaced the eye-high yellow mustard on the hillsides. The newcomers built a temple where they held seances and contacted spirits, assisted by mediums who could communicate with departed friends and relatives. The peaceful little enclave's serenity was doomed, however, when oil was discovered in 1894.

Within a few years a forest of the first offshore oil wells in the Western Hemisphere rose on piers jutting out into the Santa Barbara Channel. Today, offshore oil rigs, at night resembling aircraft carriers, still dot the horizon.

Oil drillers and workers streamed into town, to the dismay of the original settlers. The oil that could be reached by primitive wells eventually dwindled and by the l920's the boom was over.

In 1951 Highway 101 was expanded into a freeway, wiping out the original business district on Wallace Avenue, and cutting off the town's access to the beach. In the l960's the freeway was elevated, allowing an underpass at Evans Avenue and reuniting the town. An influx of surfers, artists, and hippies joined the older residents, drawn by inexpensive housing and a casual life style. Additional housing was, for many years,curtailed by a lack of water, but when Lake Cachuma was built additional water was available and a building boom began. Now only a handful of undeveloped lots are available, but homes (most with ocean-views) are in great demand.

Today the oil wells on the beach are gone and the area provides recreation for swimmers, sun-bathers, horses, and dogs. On weekends the streets bustle with visitors and antique hunters, but it's said, in certain houses, strange and unexplained sounds can be heard in the still of the night.

Community Services
  • Summerland-Carpinteria Fire Station,
    2375 Lillie Ave
  • Summerland Presbyterian Church,
    2400 Lillie Ave
  • U.S. Post Office
    2245 Lillie Ave
  • Summerland Citizens Association
    P.O. Box 508, Summerland, CA 93067
  • Summerland School
    135 Valencia
  • Summerland Sanitary District
    2435 Wallace Ave
  • Summerland Recycling Ctr
    Wallace Ave

Historical Points of interest

  • Summerland Presbyterian Church
    2400 Lillie Ave at Valencia
  • The Big Yellow House
    built in 1889-90 on Picrpoint Ave
  • The Antique Chase
    former Post Office built in 1939.
    on Lillie Ave at Colville
  • Summerland Beach Cafe
    built c. 1891, on Lillie Ave at Hollister
  • Galen ClarkHouse
    built 1891, On Shelby St


  • Lookout Park
    Evans Ave at the beach
  • Lodahl Park
    Lillie Ave at Ortega Hill Rd
  • Veterans Memorial Park.
    ext to the Fire Station
  • Greenwell Preserve
    Greenwell Ave at Asegra Rd


  • Coffee Cove
    2246 Lillie Ave
  • Stacky's Seaside
    2315 Lillie Ave
  • Summerland Beach Cafe
    2294 Lillie Ave
  • The Big Yellow House
    108 Pierpoint Ave
  • The Nugget
    2318 Lillie Ave
  • Tinker's
    2275 Ortega Hill Rd. #C

Video Rentals

  • Summerland Video
    2325 Lillie Ave
  • Inn on Summerhill

Antiques and Collectibles

  • Antico
    2280 Lillie Ave.
  • Carty and Carty Antiques 2264 Lillie Ave
  • Christian-Miller Antiques
    2173 Ortega Hill
  • Gentlemen Antiquarians
    2560 Lillie Ave
  • Heather House
    2448 Lillie Ave
  • Mary Suding Antiques
    2173 Ortega Hill Rd
  • H. Pollock Fine Art Gallery
    2345 Lillie Ave
  • Precious Cargo
    2246 Lillie Ave
  • Summerland Antique Collective
    2192 Ortega Hill Rd
  • Summerland Hillside Antiques
    2240 Lillie Ave
  • The Antique Chase
    2350 Lillie Ave
  • The Urban Hunter
    2272 Lillie Ave

Business Services

  • Allstate Insurance
    2173 Ortega Hill Rd
  • Craig F. Meister, CPA
    2272 Lillie Ave
  • Korpinen and Erickson,
    Design Associates
    496 Lillie Ave
  • McAdams Financial Services
  • Sterling Communications
    2264 Lillie Ave


  • Indian Summer
    2275 Ortega Hill Rd.
  • Health and Beauty
  • Amara Spa by the Sea
    2476 Lillie Ave
  • Shear Design
    2275 Ortega Hill Rd

Home & Garden, Exotic Birds

  • Bo-tan-ik
    2329 Lillie Ave
  • Pan's Garden
    2360 Lillie Ave
  • Menagerie, Eiotic Birds and Plants
    2430 Lillie Ave

Markets and Convenience Stores

  • Sandpiper Liquor
    2262 Ortega Hill Rd
  • Summerland Market
    2580 Lillie Ave

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