L.A. Zoo Lights Holiday Light Display Runs From 11/16/18 to 1/6/19


For the 5th year, the Los Angeles Zoo hosts LA Zoo Lights, a nightly holiday light display throughout a large section of the zoo. This jaw dropping display is sure to bring a smile to your face. There are lighted animals of all types, snowflake lane, twinkle tunnel, reindeer village, brightly lit monkeys all over the place and much more.

LA Zoo Lights will be held nightly, from November 16, 2018 to January 6, 2019, with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Learn more and purchase tickets at www.lazoolights.org. LA Zoo Lights is a rain-or-shine event.

But WAIT...discounted tickets available at bit.ly/LAZooLights2018 (affiliate link).

 Scene from LA Zoo Lights 2014

Scene from LA Zoo Lights 2014


LA Zoo Lights will be held nightly, with the exception of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, from November 18, 2016 through January 8, 2017. Learn more and purchase tickets at www.lazoolights.org. LA Zoo Lights is a rain-or-shine event.


Brush Fire Information and Links for Hill Fire and Woolsey Fire November 8, 2018

 Hill Fire around 3:15pm on Thursday, Nov 8th, seen from west Los Robles Trail in Newbury Park.

Hill Fire around 3:15pm on Thursday, Nov 8th, seen from west Los Robles Trail in Newbury Park.

The Conejo Valley and nearby areas have been inundated by emergencies today, including the Borderline Bar & Grill shooting and the fires - Hill Fire (originated in the Hill Canyon area of Thousand Oaks/Newbury Park) and the Woolsey Fire (originated 2:25 pm in the Simi Hills near the old Rocketdyne facility, 25000 Woolsey Canyon Road - bordering Canoga Park in Los Angeles County).

While CVG is not a news site and we cannot provide up to the minute updates, we do want to provide information and links to help local resident stay closely dialed in.

For updates including evacuations, shelters, etc., visit www.vcemergency.com. Or call (805) 465-6650.

For evacuation notifications, sign up by texting VCAlert to 313131 or visit www.vcalert.org.

If you are a Twitter user, the Ventura County Fire Department Public Information Officer provides periodic updates via Tweets at twitter.com/VCFD_PIO. The VCFD Twitter page also provides updates and some useful "Retweets" from other sources at twitter.com/VCFD.

Ventura County emergency alert radio stations: KVTA 1590 AM, KHAY 100.7 FM, KMLA 103.7 FM (SPANISH)


City of Westlake Village emergency updates: (Woolsey Fire): www.wlv.org/AlertCenter.aspx


Other Notices:

HillFire315 2.JPG

Other Updates:

  • National Park Service announced the Western Town at Paramount Ranch has been destroyed by the Woolsey Fire.

  • Peter Strauss Ranch largely destroyed by Woolsey Fire.

  • Woolsey Fire burned through Charmlee Wilderness Park in Malibu, though the structures in the park survived.

  • The MASH set and Reagan Ranch at Malibu Creek State Park were destroyed by the Woolsey Fire, according to the L.A. Times.

  • The L.A. Times also reports that the Leo Carrillo State Beach Campground has been “torched beyond recognition.”

  • ABC News list of homes burned by Woolsey Fire.

  • Woolsey Fire

    • 83,250 acres as of 7pm 11/10. 5% containment. Full containment expected by 11/15. 177 structures destroyed; 2 damaged.

    • 83,275 acres as of 7am 11/11. 10% containment. Full containment expected 11/17. 177 structures, destroyed, 2 damaged.

    • 85,500 acres as of 7pm 11/11. 15% containment. Full containment 11/17. 2 civilian casualties. 3 firefighter injuries.

    • 11/12 7pm: 93,662 acres, 30% containment. Full containment now 11/15. Prelmin estimate show 435 structures destroyed; but damage assessment is incomplete, showing 82 confirmed destroyed and 21 damaged.

  • Hill Fire

    • 4,531 acres as of 7pm 11/10. 65% containment; full containment expected by 11/15. 2 structures destroyed; 2 damaged.

    • 7am 11/11 - No change other than 70% containment.

    • 7pm 11/11 - No change other than 75% containment.

    • 7pm 11/12 - 4,531 acres; 80% containment.

  • Pepperdine University has announced that classes will be cancelled until after Thanksgiving as a result of the Woolsey Fire.

Mass Shooting at Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks on Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Borderline LR.JPG

As a resident of Thousand Oaks for 25 years, never would I have thought that the city where I’ve raised two boys, both born at Los Robles Hospital, would land itself tied for 15th place in all-time deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history.

But here we are today, in shock over the worst tragedy ever experienced in the Conejo Valley. The hospital where my wife gave birth to our sons treated many of the 23 victims of last night’s shooting at Borderline Bar and Grill, 99 Rolling Oaks Drive, Thousand Oaks (south of the 101, off of Moorpark Road).

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, their friends and families, first responders and others impact by this horrific tragedy.

The facts:

  • Shooting took place on Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 11:20 pm.

  • There were 12 victims who died at the hands of the active shooter, who was also confirmed deceased.

  • One victim was Ventura County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus.

  • Other confirmed deaths: Cody Coffman, Justin Meek, Alaina Housley, Noel Sparks, Blake Dingman, Jake Dunham, Kristina Morisette, Sean Adler, Telemachus Orfanos, Dan Manrique, Mark Meza


  • Visit www.vcemergency.com for updates.

  • Visit City of T.O. website at www.toaks.org/residents/borderline-shooting-information for updates.

  • Monetary donations can be made at vccf.org/donate/make-a-donation to help those impacted by the tragedy.

  • Moorpark Road closed from 101 to Los Padres Drive, including 101 north and south offramps, until investigation is concluded.

  • Vigil at 6pm Thursday night at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Kavli Theatre, with overflow crowds at The Lakes at Thousand Oaks.

  • Blood Drive in Lundring Events Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10

  • "Remembering Those We Lost in Our Community" An Interfaith time of healing and memorial will be presented by Calvary Community Church on Friday, November 9th at 7:15pm in Westlake to honor the victims and families and friends that were lost during The Borderline tragedy. Both pastor, rabbi and priest will be in attendance to share comfort and support with people of all faith. Calvary Community Church is located at 5495 Via Rocas, Westlake Village. Beginning this Sunday the 11th from 4pm to 5pm, Calvary Community Church will be providing free counseling for the next four Sundays. For more information on church location, please call (818)575-2267

Fundraising Events:

The following was written by Jenn Zimmerman, Cal Lutheran’s veterans coordinator, about Justin Meek.

Justin worked in the Veterans Resource Office for two years as a VA work study, and his impact will not be forgotten. His gregarious and outgoing attitude allowed him to instantly bond with the veterans who entered the office. He worked with the Veterans Club to plan events and help veteran-students with their VA certifications. Not only did he work with us, he was an active student on the campus. The busier he was, the more he interacted with his peers, the more he thrived. He was a kind and compassionate person who really cared for others.

Justin was a criminal justice and criminology major who had a passion for doing what was right. I’m not shocked he took action to protect the people at Borderline.

He was a part of the Kingsmen Quartet and loved singing in choir. He sang the National Anthem at graduation and was lined up to sing with the Disney Carolers for the holiday season. Justin came back to Cal Lutheran after he graduated to support the Country Line Dance Club with Borderline. He loved running college night and always seemed to draw a crowd.

He was planning to join the US Coast Guard; a compromise between his Air Force veteran mother and his Navy SEAL father. He enjoyed cooking for others and often brought his leftovers for us to share as we envied his cooking skills. He was going to be the chef our Veterans Day Celebration this Monday. Since he can no longer be with us, we will hold a memorial in his honor. Justin was a real go-getter and had his whole life ahead of him. He will be deeply missed in our community.

Emergency Response Systems in Ventura County and Surrounding Areas


VC Alert is a free service provided by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services and participating cities. It launched in January 2012.

All 10 cities in Ventura County utilize the VC Alert system - Camarillo, Fillmore, Moorpark, Ojai, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Santa Paula, Thousand Oaks, Ventura and Simi Valley as well as unincorporated areas of Ventura County.

The VC Alert database includes all listed and unlisted landline telephone numbers serviced by AT&T and Verizon.  If you would like to ensure that you will be contacted on your home phone, cellular phone, work phone, TTY device, email, fax or text messaging, you must register that information using the opt in VC Alert portal. All information you provide will be kept strictly confidential.

VC Alert alerts residents about emergencies and other important community news.  The system enables officials to provide essential information quickly when there is a threat to the health or safety of Ventura County residents. To learn more and to register online, visit www.vcalert.org or call 805.648.9283.

The City of Westlake Village has Blackboard Connect for telephone emergency response recordings for hazards, warnings, evacuations, updates, etc. Land lines are included in their database but you may place an additional phone in the database.

Ventura County emergency alert radio stations: KVTA 1590 AM, KHAY 100.7 FM, KMLA 103.7 FM (SPANISH)

Los Angeles County residents in Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Malibu, etc. can sign up for emergency alerts at www.lacounty.gov/emergency/alert-la.

Craft Breweries with Onsite Tasting Rooms In and Around Ventura County and Adjacent Areas

According to the Brewers Association, there were 6,372 total U.S. breweries at the end of 2017, up 16% from one year prior (and over double the number of breweries in 2013). Over 98% of these breweries are craft breweries, consisting of microbreweries, brewpubs and regional craft breweries.

A craft brewer is defined as being small (annual production of 6 million barrels of beer or less), independent and traditional (flavors derived mostly from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients).

We've seen and experienced this growth in and around Ventura County, so how about if we summarize them right here! This list includes local craft breweries with onsite tasting rooms ranging from the Conejo Valley out just past Ventura County into Carpinteria.

Conejo Valley (Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, Agoura Hills)

14 Cannons Brewery and Showroom opened at 31125 Via Colinas, Suite 907 in Westlake Village opened in September 2017, featuring a handful of freshly brewed craft beers as well as an actual brewery showroom. www.14cannons.com 818.652.6971

Ladyface Alehouse & Brasserie, the Conejo Valley's first microbrewery and brewpub, opened in November 2009 at 29281 Agoura Road, Agoura Hills. Offering a full selection of craft brews and full lunch/dinner menus daily. ladyfaceale.com 818.477.4566

Westlake Brewing Company opened its small volume brewery in early 2016 at 31111 Via Colinas #200, Westlake Village. Offers craft beers and craft soda in an industrial feel.  The taproom, open Wednesday through Sunday, has old school pinball machines, shuffleboard table and live entertainment. westlakebrewingcompany.com 818.851.9052

Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company opened its Westlake Village taproom at The Shoppes at Westlake, 30770 Russell Ranch Road, in December 2015. Offers up craft beers brewed onsite as well as at other locations in Santa Barbara. Also a full-service restaurant with indoor/outdoor seating open daily. www.figmtnbrew.com 818.874.1305

Five Threads Brewing Company at 31133 Via Colinas, Suite 109, Westlake Village opened in October 2015. Offers fresh brewed craft beers in its tasting room seven days a week. www.fivethreadsbrewing.com 805.457.5990

Twisted Oak Tavern opened in 2015 at 30105 Agoura Road, Agoura Hills, offering a full gastropub experience with a full lunch/dinner menu and over 30 craft beers on tap made onsite. Open daily. www.twistedoaktavern.pub

Coming soon to Thousand Oaks at 244 E. Thousand Oaks Boulevard: Tarantula Hill Brewing Company sometime in early 2019. tarantulahillbrewco.com


Topa Topa Brewing Company is a microbrewery that opened on June 6, 2015 and is located at 104 E. Thompson Boulevard in Ventura,. Offers a variety of microbrews in a small tasting room area. www.facebook.com/topatopabrewingco 805.628.9255

Poseidon Brewing Company opened its tasting room on August 11, 2014 at 5777 Olivas Park Drive, Unit Q, Ventura and is open Tuesday through Sunday. Ooh, they offer up a free pint on your birthday if you present Valid ID with birthdate! www.poseidonbrewingco.com 805.477.0239

Anacapa Brewing Company opened its doors back in 2000 with a seasonal rotation of over 25 beers in this full service restaurant/brewery in the heart of Downtown Ventura at 472 E. Main Streetanacapabrewing.com 805.643.BEER (2337) (gotta love that phone number)

Flat Fish Brewing is a brewery co-owned and located with Cantara Cellars at 126 N. Wood Road, #104 in Camarillo. They will soon be opening a taproom where both beer and wine are offered. Currently open Thursday through Sunday. flatfishbrewing.com 805.484.9600

MadeWest Brewing Company opened its doors in January 2016 and is located at 1744 Donlon Street, Ventura, offering a variety of craft beers, plenty of indoor/outdoor seating, food trucks and more. www.madewest.com 805.947.5002

Ventura Coast Brewing Co. is at 76 S. Oak Street in Downtown Ventura. Offers indoor/outdoor patio seating, flights, 4 and 16 ounce pours of its creations. Open 7 days a week. www.vcbc.beer

Leashless Brewing opened in early July 2017 at 585 E. Thompson Blvd, Ventura, offering organic, Belgian style ales. www.leashlessbrewing.com

Concrete Jungle Brewing is located at 4561 Market Street in Ventura in the former Surf Brewing location. The offer 20 house-brewed beers on tap. Open daily at noon, except Mondays (closed). Learn more at concretejunglebrew.com. 805.650.4816

Transmission Brewery and Tasting Room is being built out at 1098 East Front Street, Ventura.

Seaward Brewing is being built out at 1920 Goodyear Ave., Suite D, Ventura. www.seawardbrewing.com Updates at www.instagram.com/seaward_brewing.

A second Rincon Brewery is being built out at 4100 Telegraph Road, Ventura. Follow their Facebook page for updates at www.facebook.com/pg/rinconbreweryventura.

Tap’d Ventura is opening its doors at 546 E. Main St at 2pm on Thursday, November 1st. Tap’d will be serving 43 taps of craft beer “by the ounce” along with fast/casual foods including burgers, flatbread pizzas, salads and more. tapdventura.com 805.667.8771

Camarillo, Oxnard

Institution Ale Company is a microbrewery founded in 2013 that recently moved to a larger location and tasting room at 3841 Mission Oaks Boulevard in Camarillo. Food offered includes artisan flatbread pizzas and soft baked pretzels. institutionales.com 805.482.3777

Casa Agria Specialty Ales is a small brewery located at 701 N. Del Norte Boulevard, Suite 310 in Oxnard, brewing up a handful of specialty beers since February 2015. There is now a small onsite tasting room open to the public Thursday through Sunday. www.casaagria.com 805.485.1454

Red Tandem Brewery is a nanobrewery featuring 7 high quality ales brewed onsite to customers at its tasting room at 109 Harbor Boulevard, Oxnard Shores at Channel Islands Harbor. It was founded in September 2014 and opened to the public in May 2016. Open Wednesday through Sunday. www.redtandembrewery.com 805.236.2105

Moorpark, Simi Valley

Enegren Brewing Company opened in July 2011 in Moorpark and is now located at 444 Zachary Street, #120 (a newer, 15 barrel brewery opened in January 2015).  www.enegrenbrewing.com 805.552.0602

Mad Era Brewing will be coming soon (Fall 2018 anticipated) to the former home of Marie Callender's at 20 W. Cochran Street in Simi Valley (cross street Madera Road. Hmm. Mad Era. Madera. Hmm.)

Other Local Cities

The Ojai Valley Brewery Tap Room is located at Azu Restaurant and Bar at 457 E. Ojai Avenue. The brewery is located 3 blocks away. The taproom is open noon to close 7 days a week. ojaivalleybrewery.com/the-tap-room 805.640.7987

Rincon Brewery at 5065 Carpinteria Avenue in Carpinteria is a craft brewery and restaurant open 7 days a week. rinconbrewery.com 805.684.6044

Island Brewing Company has been brewing in Carpinteria since July 2001 at 5049 Sixth Street (Linden at the railroad tracks). Its open redwood beam tasting room was originally built as a packing house for lemons and citrus. Located right next to Carpinteria State Beach too! Open 7 days a week. www.islandbrewingcompany.com 805.745.8272

BrewLAB is an artisanal nano-brewery located at 4191-8 Carpinteria Avenue in Carpinteria. Tasting room is open Thursday through Sunday. www.brewlabcraft.com 949.922.9152

Other Options on Tap

Some additional craft beer tasting options in the area are highlighted below. These ones serve up tap beers from other craft breweries and/or produce the beer elsewhere. We have included on this list bars/taverns serving up at least a dozen craft beers on tap.

Conejo Valley

The Dudes' Brewing Company Tasting Room opened at Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks on July 15, 2016. Although the beers and are not brewed on site (this is done in Torrance), they have 20 tap handles for your imbibing pleasure. www.thedudesbrew.com

Bottle & Pint is a specialty craft beer store and taproom at 1714 Newbury Road, Suite G, Newbury Park. Open seven days a week, they have a revolving list with 20 beers on tap. Bring your own in or have it delivered. 805.480.9500 www.bottleandpint.com.

Draughts Restaurant & Bar at 398 N. Moorpark Road, Thousand Oaks has 45 craft beers on tap as well as a full restaurant. 805.777.7883 www.draughtsrestaurant.com

The Crown and Anchor at 2891 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd, Thousand Oaks has 17 draft beers and ciders on tap, serves food, lots of TVs and periodic live entertainment. www.crownnanchor.com 805.497.0070

Boney Mountain Tavern, located at 722 N. Wendy Drive, Newbury Park, has 32 beers on tap, including a variety of craft beers. boneymtntavern.com 805.498.6511

Finney's Crafthouse & Kitchen just opened at the Westlake Plaza, 982 S. Westlake Boulevard, Westlake Village, in the former home of Galletto. They serve up 30 craft beers on tap. www.facebook.com/Finneyscrafthouse 805.230-9950

Wades Wines at 30961 Agoura Road, Suite 321, Westlake Village offer over 50 beers on tap, wine tasting and thousands of other spirits for sale and tasting. Retail store is open daily. Tasting is open Thursday through Sunday. www.wadeswines.com 818.597.9463

Other Local Cities

McGregor's Craft Beer and Wine is a new tasting room/bottle shop at 144 W. Los Angeles Avenue #105 in Moorpark, with 16 rotating taps and an expanding library of wine. Open daily. 805.553.9818 www.mcgregorscraftbeer.com

Bottle & Pint has a 2nd location at The Annex, a cool food "court" area within The Collection at RiverPark in Oxnard.

Barrelhouse 101 at 545 E. Thompson Blvd, Ventura has an insane number of craft and micro beers on tap...over 100. Open daily with full menu. www.barrelhouse101.com 805.643.0906

The Local Beer & Wine Bar is located at 795 Camarillo Springs Road in Camarillo, Suite E. It is open daily at noon (11am on Sundays). 16 rotating taps are offered. thelocalcamarillo.com

The Dugout Sports Grill serves about 22 taps of beer along with cocktails, food and 32 TVs at 109 W. Cochran Street, Simi Valleywww.thedugoutsimi.com 805.955.9200

Winchesters Grill & Saloon at 632 East Main Street in Ventura has over 30 beers on tap, mostly craft types. They also have a full menu and full bar. www.winchestersgrill.com 805.653.7446

Yard House at The Collection at Riverpark in Oxnard has well over 100 beers on tap of all varieties.  www.yardhouse.com/locations/ca/oxnard/oxnard-the-collection-at-riverpark 805.981.8707

Cask Alehouse is located at 5952 Telegraph Road in Ventura (at Victoria), offering a rotating selection of 32 beers on draft, many of which are brewed here in Ventura County (such as Surf Brewing, Made West, Topa Topa, Poseidon and Five Threads). www.facebook.com/caskalehouse 805.765.4201

Two Trees Restaurant and Taps is located at 7822 Telegraph Road in Ventura, serving up 28 beers on tap along with full breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. www.twotreesrestaurantandtaps.com 805.659.3365

Fluid State Beer Garden, located at 692 E. Main Street, Ventura, offers craft beers, sourdough pizzas and more. www.fluidstatebeer.com 805.628.3107




Darryl's Couch was a craft beer bar located at 795 Camarillo Springs Road in Camarillo.  www.darrylscouch.com They closed on Sunday, March 11, 2018, after operating for 5 1/2 years. Now located there is The Local Beer & Wine Bar.

Surf Brewery was the first packaging craft brewery in Ventura County when it opened in June 2011. It closed in early 2018. Now operating at this location is Concrete Jungle Brewing.

Veterans Day Services in Ventura County


Veterans Day is celebrated as a Federal holiday on the 11th day of November in honor of those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.

(Note that since the 11th falls on a Sunday in 2018, it is being observed on Monday, the 12th.)

It coincides with other holidays such as Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, which are celebrated in other parts of the world and also mark the anniversary of the end of World War I, which formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when Armistice with Germany took effect.

Here are some local Veterans Day 2018 service options to honor those who have served our country:

A sampling of free Veterans Day offers for Active Military and Veterans with ID:

The following is courtesy of professional photographer Scott Harrison (www.harrysonpics.com):


Vietnam veteran David Stull stands guard while supporting a flagpole carrying the American flag at the Garden of Valor at Valley Oaks Memorial Park in Westlake Village. This was one of three 30 minute shifts he stood guard. November 1984 photo by Scott Harrison/The News Chronicle

Back in the 1980s, Conejo Valley residents would observe a 24-hour vigil during the Veterans Day holiday. I took photos several times, but this 1984 photo at dusk remains my favorite. The current full name of Valley Oaks is Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks Memorial Park. The flame is still burning at the Garden of Valor.

Compilation of Great Trails and Hikes In and Around Ventura County


Looking for a good hike around Ventura County and nearby areas? We've highlighted a number of our favorite hikes in the Do Something section of Conejo Valley Guide.





  Lone Oak at Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa

Lone Oak at Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa

  Lynnmere Open Space views to the west.

Lynnmere Open Space views to the west.

Views from the Ray Miller Trail in Malibu.

  Danielson Road trail in the Boney Mountain Wilderness.

Danielson Road trail in the Boney Mountain Wilderness.

 Views of Simi Valley from the peak of Mt. McCoy in Simi Valley.

Views of Simi Valley from the peak of Mt. McCoy in Simi Valley.

 Sunset Hills Trail in Thousand Oaks.

Sunset Hills Trail in Thousand Oaks.

 Tree encampment along Los Padres Trail in Thousand Oaks.

Tree encampment along Los Padres Trail in Thousand Oaks.