The CVG "Do Something" section contains hundreds of things to do throughout Ventura County and surrounding areas! For listings by category/type, CLICK HERE. Also visit Kid Fun, Fitness & Sports, Local Events, Local Buzz and Events Calendar for even more things to do!
Located at the corner of Erbes Road and Pederson Road in Thousand Oaks, the 14 acre Oakbrook Neighborhood Park was expanded dramatically in 2012. The original park included a play area, sand volleyball court and large grassy area. The expansion includes a decent-sized parking area, small restroom, basketball and netball* courts, a jogging/walking/bike path and a nice horseshoe pit area. Visit the Conejo Recreation and Park District website at www.crpd.org for more information.
To learn more about the game of netball, click this link here on Conejo Valley Guide. This is the first, and, as of May 2013, only netball court in Thousand Oaks. And yes, I was confused when I saw it too.
My kids and I love going to the beach but for many years we seemed to go to the same ones all the time. So I stopped by the Automobile Club and asked them if they had a brochure on all the local area beaches open to the public. They shrugged their shoulders and said no such guidebook existed. What the?? So they handed me a fold out map, which was of no use to me. I wanted to know exactly how to get to these beaches, if they have restrooms, what the parking situation is like, etc.
Then I started searching around the Internet for information and found bits and pieces in various locations that were moderately useful. But I still wanted one consolidated place where I could find out about where to go to the beach around Ventura County on up the coast to Carpinteria and down to Malibu.
So finally I compiled a comprehensive list of local area beaches, in two parts (click the links)
This took a lot of time to compile, so I truly hope you benefit from these lists! While I have not personally been to all 40+ beaches on this list, I've either visited or driven past the pretty much all of the beaches. So enjoy and provide feedback if you have comments and/or additional information.
The Scarlett Belle is a modern riverboat located in the scenic Channel Islands Harbor. The boat can accomodate from 40 to 150 passengers and is a fun, luxurious venue for weddings, parties, corporate events, anniversaries and more...casino nights, graduation parties, public holiday cruises, etc.
For more information, visit www.scarlettbelle.com or call 805.204.0977.
Located at A&M Boat Charters & Cruises at the Marine Emporium Landing at Channel Islands Harbor, 3600 S. Harbor Blvd., #219, Oxnard.
Exit the 101 freeway at Victoria, proceed south on Victoria, at West Channel Islands Blvd, turn right. Go to the second stop light and turn left onto Harbor/ W. Channel Islands Blvd. Go to Cabezone Circle make a left. Into the Marine Emporium. Walk to the back of the three buildings facing the street to the dock where you will see the Scarlett Belle and Sunfish. Free parking.
Owned and maintained by the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, 600-acre Triunfo Creek Park in Westlake Village/Agoura provides deep oak woodland, native grasslands and blankets of wildflowers in the springtime. The main feature of the park, the Pentachaeta Trail, is named after the Pentachaeta lyonii, a federally-listed endangered flower found in the park. The yellow, daisy-like flower is found only in Southern California, and blooms between April and June.
An informational kiosk at the trailhead interprets the Pentachaeta lyonii, as well as other unusual wildflowers found on the site such as the Chocolate Lily, and the White Globe Lily. The site also provides access to hiking trails on the Westlake Vista parcel, also owned and managed by the Conservancy.
Directions: The main trailhead with kiosk is on Triunfo Canyon Road east of the southern terminus of Lindero Canyon Road. There are some off-pavement spots there. The other end of the trail is at the west end of Triunfo Canyon Road about 1.5 miles west of Kanan Road. I've hiked this with my boys at ages 7 and 9 and they did fine. A little whiny on the return...next time I'll bring snacks.
Directions: From the 101 Freeway in Westlake Village exit Lindero Canyon Road. Take Lindero south to Triunfo Canyon Road. Turn left. The trailhead is located opposite Oak Forest Mobile Home.
Visit www.lamountains.com/parks.asp?parkid=62 for more information.
For well over 100 groups, clubs and organizations covering a wide range of interests, throughout Ventura County, click THIS LINK.
Click THIS LINK for a list of service clubs (e.g. Kiwanis, Rotary, Assistance League, etc.) and professional organizations and groups throughout Ventura County.
Click HERE for a list of links to music, art and dance clubs and groups in and around Ventura County.
Check THIS LIST of links to senior centers and recreation programs around Ventura County.
The Ventura River Trail is a 6.3 mile asphalt pedestrian and bike path that follows the old Southern Pacific Railroad right-of-way from Main Street in Ventura to Foster Park inland towards Ojai. The path, originally opened in 1999, connects the Ojai Valley Trail to the Omer Rains Trail along the beachfront for 17 miles great bicycling. The trail is open dawn to dusk.
Much of the Ventura River Trail parallels Ojai Freeway 33 and as such is also referred to as the Ojai Valley Trail Extension. Here are the various access points from south to north:
- Dubbers Street at Rex Street
- West Park Row Avenue
- West Harrison Ave at Westpark Center
- Stanley Avenue
- Shoshone Street
- Shell Road
- Orchard Drive
- Crooked Palm Road at Highway 33 Underpass
- Ojai Valley Waste Water Treatment Plant Access Road
- North Ventura Avenue at Hwy. 33
- Santa Ana Road at entrance to Foster Park
More information at www.cityofventura.net/pw/parks.
San Buenaventura Heritage, Inc. (SBH) is a non-profit educational and charitable organizatioin founded in 1978 with a primary focus of preserving the Dudley House, an 1892 Victorian farm house, located at 197 N. Ashwood, Ventura. The Dudley House is one of 35 Ventura County properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
The house is a living history museum reflecting the life of the Dudley family. The terraces and pergola for outdoor events have been installed on the north side side of the house, and the lavender garden with some 100 plants featuring over 20 varieties is on the south side of the house. The basement is used as a community room and visitor center with cooking facilities and is avaialble for small events and receptions. Larger events can be held outside on the grounds.
The Dudley House is open for tours the first Sunday of the month from 1pm to 4pm from January to November. Visit www.dudleyhouse.org or call 805.644.3286 for more information. Admission is free but donations are accepted and appreciated.
Historic Recording Series
During open houses, pre-1930 recordings transferred to CDs are played. A new recording is played each month on the Victrola console in the parlor. Here is the upcoming 2013 playing schedule (past events removed):
May 5 1pm to 4pm - Argentina in Paris. Recordings from 1926 to 1928
June 2 1pm to 4pm - Memphis Jug Band. Recordings from 1927 to 1934
July 4 1pm to 4pm - Louis Armstrong Recordings Vol. 2, Part 3 Recordings from 1925
July 7 1pm to 4pm Louis Armstrong Recordings Vol. 2, Part 3 Recordings from 1925.
August 4 1pm to 4pm - Charles Peguri. Recordings from 1907 to 1930
September 1 1pm to 4pm - Early Tzigane Records, Vol. 2, 1905 to 1922
October 6 1pm to 4pm - The Naughty 1920s, Vol 1, Recordings from the 1920s
November 3, 2013 1pm to 4pm - Emma Eames. Vol. 2, Recordings from 1906 to 1911.
No recordings in December due to Dudley House Victorian Holiday Boutique.
Old Time Radio Series
CDs of radio shows are performed in the radio console on the 2nd floor hallway. Upcoming 2013 schedule (past events removed 4/28/13):
May 5 1pm to 4pm - The Whuistler-Blue Alibi, June 14, 1950
June 2 1pm to 4pm - The Life of Riley-Basketbal Game...Bribe?, March 23, 1951
July 4 1pm to 4pm - Fibber McGee and Molly-Too Much Energy, Janaury 23, 1945
July 7 1pm to 4pm - Fibber McGee and Molly-Too Much Energy, Janaury 23, 1945
August 4 1pm to 4pm - Sherlock Holmes-The Adventure of the Sinister Crate of Cabbages, May 2, 1948
September 1 1pm to 4pm - Mystery in the Air-The Horla, February 12, 1946
October 6 1pm to 4pm - Orson Welles Mercury Theater-War of the Worlds (1hr), October 30, 1938
November 3 1pm to 4pm - The Great Gilderesleeve-The Jolly Boys Band, November 23, 1949
No shows in December due to Dudley House Victorian Holiday Boutique.
The 20th Dudley House Victorian Holiday Boutique will take place from 10am to 6pm on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday starting on the Friday after Thanksgiving, November 29. The dates are November 29, 30 and December 1, 6, 7, 8, 13, 14 and 15. The House is decorated inside by dozens of crafters who will be selling their items. For information on the event call (805)-654-8381.
The Conejo Valley Botanic Garden is a 33 acre retreat of hiking trails and natural habitat adjacent to Conejo Community Park off of Lynn Road and Gainsborough.
CVBG now offers plant sales (weather permitting) every Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. featuring California native and drought tolerant plants. Reasonable prices! Enter at the Kids' Adventure Garden entrance (W. Gainsborough Road at Jeaunine Dr. between Lynn and Moorpark Roads.
This is really a special place to bring the kids for low key hike. There are numerous trails and a short walk/hike to the top of the mountain rewards you with sweeping views of the entire Conejo Valley, from Westlake Village to Thousand Oaks to Newbury Park.
Here is what you'll find at the CVBG:
- The Nature Trail is 3/4 of a mile long and meanders above the creek through oaks and willows. This is a moderate trail.
- The Little Loop Trail leads you above the creek, through chaparral and around a meadow.
- The Native Plant Section and Lower Meadow feature southern and northern California plants.
- Lillian's Meadow showcases perennials, shrubs and trees that thrive with minimal water.
- The Salvia Garden delights hummingbirds and butterflies.
- The Butterfly Garden is a safe haven that provides nectar and food sources for butterflies and caterpillars.
- The Nursery houses workspace for the plant propogation team and hosts plant sales.
- The Herb Garden exhibits an extensive and unusual collection of medicinal, kitchen and aromatic herbs.
- The Bird Habitat has a fresh water source and is planted with native plants that provide year-round food source for birds.
- The Australian Section features collection of plants from down under.
- The Desert Garden hilltop landscape features cacti, succulents and desert trees and provides a panoramic view of the Conejo Valley.
- The Rare Fruit Orchard holds an extensive collection of trees.
- The Tranquility Garden is planted in the Japanese style featuring California native plants.
- The Oak Tree Grove has many species of North American and other oak trees.
- The Trail of Trees exhibits 50 trees with a variety of genera.
If you have small kids, they will love the Kids' Adventure Garden and treehouse, but it is only open on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. They'll enjoy hiking through the trails and exploring the streams and bridges.
Located at the southeast corner of Westlake Boulevard and Thousand Oaks Boulevard, The Promenade at Westlake is an architecturally appealing outdoor mall that has a nice assortment of things to do, including two large fountains, several koi ponds and in summer 2012, a new high-end Cinepolis movie theater.
Restaurants include Macaroni Grill, The Grill on the Alley, Marmalade Cafe, Farfalla Trattoria, Champagne French Bistro, Fresh Brothers, Lemonade, Loteria Grill, Paul Martin's American Grill and Pick Up Stix. There is also a Bristol Farms, Cost Plus Imports, Sports Authority and a variety of clothing and specialty stores.
Lots of outdoor seating around the fountain area outside of Barnes and Noble. There is usually live music on Friday/Saturday nights during the summer months. The fountain between Paul Martin's and Macaroni Grill is a kid favorite.
The Promenade at Westlake is the sister mall of the similarly appointed The Commons at Calabasas. It is located at 100 Promenade Way, Westlake Village (southeast corner of Westlake and Thousand Oaks Boulevards). Visit www.ShopPromenade.com or call 805.497.9861 for more information.
Established in 1924, Toastmasters International has become a world leader in helping people become more competent and comfortable in front of an audience. The nonprofit has 270,000 members in 13,0000 clubs around the world, offering a proven, fun way to practice and hone communication and leadership skills.
Most meetings are comprised of approximately 20 people who meet weekly for an hour or two. Participants practice and learn skills by filling a meeting role, ranging from giving a prepared speech or an impromptu one to serving as timer, evaluator or grammarian. There is no instructor; instead, each speech and meeting is critiqued by a member in a positive manner, focusing on what was done right and what could be improved.
There are over 70 local Toastmasters clubs throughout Ventura County. They meet on different days of the week in various locations, in the morning, during the day or at night.
First step is to find a local club. There is a search function at www.toastmasters.org that allows you to search for a club by zip code, by meeting day and by meeting time.
Here is just a sampling of some of the 70+ local Toastmasters clubs:
- Vocal Ambassadors (voiceambassadors.toastmastersclubs.org) meets on Wednesdays from 6-7:30pm near Westlake High School. Call 818.991.9322 for details.
- Camarillo Evening Toastmasters (camarillo.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Tuesday evenings
- Conejo Valley Toastmasters (1864.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Monday nights at Baxter
- Daybreakers of Westlake Toastmasters (3332.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Wednesday mornings at Baxter from 6:30 a.m. to 8 a.m.
- Ocean View Toastmasters (www.oceanviewtoastmasters.com) meets on alternate Thursday nights in Ventura
- Rhetorical Link Toastmasters of Conejo Valley (6765.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Thursday nights
- Ventura Toastmasters (since 1934!!) (www.venturatoastmasters.com) meets Monday nights
- Moorpark Toastmasters (1038927.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Wednesday nightsat the Moorpark Chamber of Commerce
- Simi Valley Toastmasters (www.simivalleytoastmasters.org) meets Thursday nights
- Calabasas Toastmasters (www.calabasastoastmasters.org) meets Monday nights
- Ventura Sunrise Toastmasters (http://venturasunrise.freetoasthost.net) meets Tuesday mornings
- Sandpiper Toastmasters (1224.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Wednesday mornings in Ventura
- ACE Toastmasters (1038926.toastmastersclubs.org) meets Tuesday nights at Mimi's Cafe in Thousand Oaks
- CLU Expressionists Club (7548.toastmastersclubs.org) meets at lunch on Tuesdays at Cal Lutheran
- Thousand Oaks Toastmasters at Lunch (TOTAL) (1934.toastmastersclubs.org/) meets on Thursdays at noon at the Civic Arts Plaza Oak Room. Free parking
- Thousand Oaks Toastmasters (2847612.toastmastersclubs.org/) meets on Tuesdays at noon at the Civic Arts Plaza Oak Room. Free parking (New club in 2013!)
- Los Amigos Toastmasters (2224.toastmastersclubs.org) is a bilingual club that meets Thursday nights in Oxnard
The list goes on. Contact us if you would like to post additional information about your club!
We are fortunate to have such great trails and views of Boney Peak from in Newbury Park. At Wendy and Potrero is the Western edge of the Santa Monica Mountains where Sycamore Canyon cuts through Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa and Point Mugu State Park.
Roughly a mile easy hike from Wendy/Potrero gets you to the Satwiwa Native American Indian Culture Center where you can check out some native Chumash items. This is a nice little hike to take the kids on. There are restrooms and water at the center, which is open from 9 to 5 on weekends. You can get easier access to the center by parking in the adjacent National Park Service parking lot via Lynn Road to the access road at Via Goleta in Newbury Park.
Another few miles of hiking gets you to a neat waterfall, which is fun to check out with the kids but somewhat more strenuous of a hike. Here is more information about the Boney Mountain Trail, leading up to Hidden Valley Overlook, the waterfall and Danielson Monument.
Click here for a pdf file describing these and other local trails or go to the National Park Service website at www.nps.gov/samo. Visit www.nps.gov/samo/planyourvisit/rsvsatwiwa.htm for a map and site information on the National Park Service website.