Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated Kitty Morgan's position at Better Homes and Gardens magazine. She was executive editor.
As editor-in-chief of Sunset magazine, Kitty Morgan has seen the best the West has to offer.
“This is my favorite part of California,” she said Thursday in Pismo Beach. “There is no better location to invite people to, to experience the life of the West.”
Morgan spoke at an event promoting Sunset Savor the Central Coast, a food, wine and lifestyle festival sponsored by Sunset magazine and the San Luis Obispo County Visitor and Conference Bureau.
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In its third year, the festival features four days of dinners, food and wine tastings and seminars, adventure tours and appearances by celebrity chefs such as Food Network hosts Ted Allen and Aarti Sequeira.
Last year’s Sunset Savor the Central Coast drew more than 8,870 guests and generated nearly $3 million, according to an economic impact report prepared by San Luis Obispo-based Productive Impact.
Morgan said events such as Savor give readers an experience they can’t find anywhere else.
“It’s always been about the landscape here: the beauty of ocean, oaks and those beautiful hills,” said Morgan, who last visited the Central Coast more than a decade ago. “The idea is escape: to come to a place where the pace is slower and sweeter.”
A California native and graduate of UC Berkeley, Morgan served as Sunset associate travel editor from 1984 to 1988, before heading to the East Coast to work at publications including Departures, Latina and Every Day With Rachael Ray. After five years as executive editor of Better Homes and Gardens magazine, she returned to Sunset this March.
Morgan described Sunset’s target audience as passionate people who travel, cook and entertain significantly more than their peers.
“What the magazine gives is a doorway into experiences,” she said. “It’s about living well.”
She’s interested in reaching out to readers via the tech sector, creating specific content for tablets and smartphones. For instance, she said, the magazine could personalize tips from the popular Sunset Western Garden Book for individual microclimates.