Fun for the Kids at Local Ventura County Shopping Malls

Shop and plop yourself down while your kids get entertained or, better yet, entertain themselves.  Here is a roundup of kids' activities and play areas at local shopping malls.  In addition to these ongoing activities, seasonal/holiday events are posted regularly here on Conejo Valley Guide.

The Lakes at Thousand Oaks offers a kids club on selected Wednesday mornings.  The Lakes has nicely appointed outdoor playground with swings, slide and sandbox, large grassy area, two lakes and waterfall.

Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks has Kids Fun Zone arts and crafts on the last Saturday of the month.  There is a small outdoor kids play area for the little ones and an impressive outdoor water fountain, not to mention a NEOS interactive play wall. The DojoBoom Extreme Air Sports attraction opened in November 2017 and is a huge draw for kids of all ages, not to mention adults!

The Commons at Calabasas offers a Kids Club for kids 10 and under on Tuesday nights at 6pm typically March through October as well as an Edwards Theater.

Simi Valley Town Center has a small outdoor kids play area, dragon structure and $2 mini train rides. There’s also the Rockin’ Kids Play Center and Studio Movie Grill to round out the action.

The Oaks Mall in Thousand Oaks offers an indoor kids play area for little ones, Build-a-Bear Workshop a Gymboree Play & Music and Young Art Lessons Children’s Art Store. The outdoor shops area often has large scale games out.

Pacific View Mall in Ventura has a nice kids' play area near the food court, Le Funland, a Build a Bear and a monthly Kids Club.

Camarillo Premium Outlets expanded by 220,000 sq ft in April 2009 with The Promenade, which has a Spanish style courtyard area.  In 2019, small kids playground area was constructed at The Promenade.

Playground installed at the Camarillo Premium Outlets in 2019.

Playground installed at the Camarillo Premium Outlets in 2019.

The Promenade at Westlake does not have a kids play area but they do have several nice fountains, live music on most summer weekends, the upscale Cinepolis movie theater and a koi pond.

The Village at Dos Vientos Ranch in Newbury Park has a small playground and grassy area with a pond and bridge.

Lakeshore Learning in Ventura is a great store to buy learning toys and products for kids.  It offers free crafts every Saturday from 11am to 3pm.

Malibu Country Mart has a nice outdoor kids' playground area with cool ocean breezes.

The Collection at Riverpark in Oxnard has the 16 screen Century TheatreColor Me Mine ceramics studio and a nice outdoor playground/park area. The Seaside Steamer offers trackless train rides Fri through Sun. The Annex Food Hall at The Collection offers a Kids Club the last Wednesday of the month.

Indoor Play Places In and Around Ventura County

There are hundreds of parks with play areas throughout the Conejo Valley and Greater Ventura County compiled at THIS LINK, but if you are looking for an indoor playtime experience with your little ones, from toddlers to teens, here are a number of options to check out.

This is just a small sampling of kids' activities highlighted here on Conejo Valley Guide.

FUN FOR THE KIDS AT LOCAL VENTURA COUNTY AREA SHOPPING MALLS

The three story foam ball projectile and climbing area at Kids World in Oak Park.

The three story foam ball projectile and climbing area at Kids World in Oak Park.

Places Where Kids Can Eat Free in Ventura County

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Here's a list of restaurants that have "Kids Eat Free" deals around Ventura County! These deals are subject to change at a moment's notice, so make sure to call the restaurants in advance!

 Let us know of any changes or additions! Now let's go EAT!!

Ventura County area daily deals and online coupon websites

Restaurant rewards programs at 100+ Ventura County eateries

PizzaRev locations in Thousand Oaks (Oaks Mall) and Camarillo (Premium Outlets) are currently (as of July 2019) offering a free Kids’ Meal with the purchase of a regular entree and drink on Sundays. One free meal per transaction in restaurant only. Children 12 and under. Child must be present. www.facebook.com/PizzaRevCamarilloCA/photos/a.807337842641127/2813286562046235 Call to confirm - T.O. 805-230-3482 and Camarillo 805-482-0419

Buca di Beppo currently (July 2019) has a Kids Eat Free deal for dine-in only. One free kids meal for each purchase of a small entree. Two free kids meals for each purchase of a large pizza, pasta or entree. Child must be present (no Home Alone situations lol). Located at Janss Marketplace. www.bucadibeppo.com

Buca di Beppo Kids Eat Free Deal - July 2019.

Buca di Beppo Kids Eat Free Deal - July 2019.

Red's Barbecue at 3090 Cochran St, Ste A1 in Simi Valley is offering Kids Eat Free every Thursday from 11am to close. Get up to 2 free kids' menu meals for every adult meal ordered. Dine in only. Ages 11 and under only. (Reconfirmed 4/16/19)

Kids Eat Free on Wednesdays 4pm to close at Patron Mexican Bar & Grill, 1620 Newbury Road, Suite 2, Newbury Park. One kids meal with purchase of an adult meal for kids 12 and under.

Kids Eat Free all day on Mondays/Tuesdays at Macaroni Grill. For ages 12 and under with purchase of adult entree. Location at 2920 Tapo Canyon Road, Simi Valley. 

D'Amore's Famous Pizza at 300 N. Lantana in Camarillo is currently offering a Kids Eat Free deal on Sundays all day for ages 4 to 12. One child per paid adult meal, dine in only. Call 805.445.6534 to confirm.

Denny's offers Kids Eat Free for 10 and under from 4 pm to 10 pm on designated nights. Up to 2 free kids meals for each paid adult entree. Call location to confirm.

Maria's Italian Kitchen offers Kids Eat Free on WEDNESDAY nights from 4pm to close for kids under age 10 with purchase of adult entree, limited to 2 children per family. Located at 29035 Thousand Oaks Blvd, Agoura (818.865.8999), 23331 Mulholland Dr., Woodland Hills (818.225.0586) and at The Collection at RiverPark in Oxnard (805.988.3300)

Eleven of My Favorite Things to Do In and Around the City of Ventura

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Incorporated in 1866, the City of Ventura is the county seat of Ventura County. The official name of Ventura is the city of San Buenaventura. Mission San Buenaventura was founded by Franciscan priest Junipero Serra on March 31, 1782 and was named after Saint Bonaventure. Enough with the history lesson...here are some of my favorite things to do in this beautiful city!

You can't miss the 1,600 foot long Ventura Pier, with its panoramic views, fishing and ocean-breezes. There's a cool little playground area in the sand just west of the pier, bicycle rentals nearby, miles of beachfront bike path and Surfers' Point. San Buenaventura State Beach stretches from the Ventura Pier down south past the homes of the Ventura Keys.

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Ventura Harbor Village is home to 33 acres of harborside activities, shopping and restaurants. There's an arcade with an antique carousel, boat rides, kayaking and sailing and quick access to family-friendly Harbor Cove Beach and Surfer's Knoll Beach. Also within a short walking distance is the Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitor Center, an inspirational and interactive source of information about the Channel Islands National Park. Bring the kids!

Ventura Harbor Village is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.

Ventura Harbor Village is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.

For some of the most spectacular views of Ventura, stop by Grant Park / Serra Cross Park. You can drive up there, or park above the historic Ventura City Hall building and walk to Grant Park via the Ventura Botanical Gardens Demonstration Trail. This nice 1 mile trail, opened in October 2012, will give you a nice little workout, with views along the way.

A view from the Ventura Botanical Gardens Demonstration Trail. (Taken prior to the Thomas Fire of December 2017.)

A view from the Ventura Botanical Gardens Demonstration Trail. (Taken prior to the Thomas Fire of December 2017.)

Golf N' Stuff is a family favorite, especially when it's really hot in the Conejo Valley and you're looking for an outdoor alternative to the beach.  The kids never tire of the two 18-hole mini golf courses, bumper boats, large, nicely appointed arcade, go karts and bumper cars. Sign up with their email club and receive periodic 2 for 1 deals.

Mini golf fun at Golf N' Stuff Ventura.

Mini golf fun at Golf N' Stuff Ventura.

Another popular family choice is oceanfront Marina Park in the Ventura Keys, a decent sized park with plenty of grassy area, a newer playground and path to adjacent picnic and viewing area Soter Point. We enjoy riding bikes from the park to the Ventura Beach Path.

Marina Park Beach

Marina Park Beach

In Downtown Ventura, the Museum of Ventura County hosts a collection of over 30,000 pieces of fine art and historical items and a changing lineup of exhibits displaying items of local relevance. The Museum's Research Library houses over 150,000 resources related to the history of Ventura County. And the Museum regularly hosts public events geared towards all ages as well as free admission the first Sunday of each month.

La Conchita Bike Path Between Mobil Pier Road in Ventura to Rincon Point

My choice for most awesome Class I Bike Path in Ventura County is the La Conchita Bike Path that runs from Mobil Pier Road in Ventura (southwest of Mussel Shoals) to Rincon Point. The path is directly adjacent to the southbound Highway 101.

Entry point to La Conchita Bike Path at Rincon Point Rd/Bates Rd (directly adjacent to the 101 onramp).

Entry point to La Conchita Bike Path at Rincon Point Rd/Bates Rd (directly adjacent to the 101 onramp).

This distinct path premiered in September 2014 and provides for roughly 4 miles of unimpeded views of the Pacific Ocean on the west and is directly adjacent to the hustle and bustle of Highway 101 on the other side.

Do views from a bike path ever get any better than this!!??

Do views from a bike path ever get any better than this!!??

Class I bike paths are great to bring the entire family on as they are completely separate from street traffic. My kids love this path because it is flat, in great condition and is just so beautiful that its hard not to ride this path without a smile.

This separates the path from southbound 101 traffic. Pretty amazing riding carefree adjacent to the 101.

This separates the path from southbound 101 traffic. Pretty amazing riding carefree adjacent to the 101.

We brought the bikes to Rincon Beach Park to start our journey on the north end of the path. (Alternatively, park at Rincon Point or on Rincon Pt Road.) You first get to see surfers at the world famous Rincon Point, then on to the La Conchita Beach area.

One of several beach access points to the La Conchita Beach area.

One of several beach access points to the La Conchita Beach area.

There are several beach access points along the path.  As part of this project, Caltrans built an undercrossing to enable folks to walk to the beach from La Conchita

After La Conchita you reach a stopping point at the small community of Mussel Shoals, where you can stop at the Cliff House Inn for a drink and check out the man-made Rincon Island.

A quick stop to view the man-made an inaccessible Rincon Island

A quick stop to view the man-made an inaccessible Rincon Island

Walk your bikes across the offramp to the next bike path entry point, on to the next section of path that half circles southeast to its endpoint at Mobil Pier Road.

You cross here (signs indicate you must walk bikes across) to the next access point.

You cross here (signs indicate you must walk bikes across) to the next access point.

You will see beach area here referred to as Oil Piers Beach. There used to be piers here but they were taken down in 1998.  There is parking on Mobil Pier Road for beach/bike path access; you can park here and ride the path the opposite direction.

The beauty continues (except for the graffiti) as you ride towards Mobil Pier Road.

The beauty continues (except for the graffiti) as you ride towards Mobil Pier Road.

Mobil Pier Road is the endpoint of this Class I path, but, you can continue south if you'd like by taking the Mobil Pier Road underpass below the 101 to Pacific Coast Highway going south, past Hobson Beach Park, Rincon Parkway, Faria Beach Park and so on. This section is not Class I path but I've taken my kids here and we enjoy it.

Great stuff! A Ventura County "Bucket List" item that all of you have to try!

4th of July Fireworks, Parades and Other Events Around Ventura County

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America's 243rd birthday is July 4, 2019! Here is our annual list of local fireworks, parades and other festivities taking place throughout Ventura County and surrounding areas for Independence Day.

Fireworks planned in Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, Moorpark (July 3rd), Simi Valley, Calabasas, Channel Islands Harbor, Ojai, Santa Paula, Fillmore, Woodland Hills, Camarillo, Ventura and Santa Barbara. Laser show in Agoura Hills on the 7th.

4th of July celebration parades to take place in Westlake Village, Ventura, Ojai, Santa Barbara, Channel Islands Harbor and Carpinteria (June 30).

Other family festivities and fun includes concerts, carnivals, swimming, games, tournaments, kids' fun zones, 5K/10K runs, etc.!

(Contact us with updates)

Thousand Oaks/Newbury Park

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The annual Conejo Recreation and Park District and City of Thousand Oaks 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular is launched from the hill behind the Hillcrest Center of the Arts in Thousand Oaks. Best viewing will be at Janss Marketplace and The Oaks Mall parking lots. Fireworks start at 9 p.m. Patriotic music simulcast by KHAY 100.7.

Other CRPD 4th of July events around town include a pancake breakfast and Home Run Derby in the morning at Borchard Park in Newbury Park, Concert in the Park at 5pm at Conejo Community Park and free swimming from noon to 4pm at CLU and NPHS pools.

July 4th 5K/10K Run/Walk at Dos Vientos in Newbury Park. Race proceeds benefits a local non-profit that helps families in extreme circumstances.

Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks once again will be hosting a free viewing of the fireworks along with live music and family activities starting at 5pm on the 4th. Eagles tribute band The Long Run will be performing.

Bethany Church on the Hill in Thousand Oaks once again opens its incredible views to the public with a 4th of July Celebration starting at 6pm. Free music, family fun, food for sale and some of the best views of the Thousand Oaks fireworks display in town!

Ice Cream Social and Patriotic Celebration at Stagecoach Inn Museum in Newbury Park from 1-4pm on July 4th. Free admission and ice cream (while supplies last)!

Westlake Village

The 50th Annual Westlake Village 4th of July Parade starts at 9:45am followed by music, inflatables, games, popsicles, etc. at Berniece Bennett Park until noon. Boy Scout pancake breakfast before the parade for $5/person.

The City of Westlake Village presents its 6th Annual Fireworks Spectacular Show from the Westlake Village Golf Course, with additional viewing locations at Calvary Community Church, Westlake Village Inn and Berniece Bennett Park. Activities begin at 6pm, including family-friendly games and contests and food trucks. The 18 minute show will start at 9:10PM.

Calvary Community Church is hosting a Fireworks Celebration starting at 6pm, followed by fireworks viewing at 9pm. Bring blankets, chairs and dinner, or purchase from food trucks on site. No pets, grills, alcohol, tents or tailgating allowed.

Moorpark (3rd of July)

The City of Moorpark presents its 3rd of July Fireworks Extravaganza at Arroyo Vista Park, 4550 Tierra Rejada Road once again. A fun family event with festivities (games, food, entertainment) starting at 4pm (gates open at 3:45pm). Fireworks at 9pm. $5 admission; ages 4 and under are free.

Simi Valley

Visit the Reagan Presidential Library 4th of July Celebration between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Festivities include music, family entertainment, food, presidential re-enactors, face painting, storytelling and more. All 4th of July activities are FREE; however, regular admission applies for touring the museum.

The Star Spangled 4th of July Fireworks Celebration will take place at Rancho Santa Susana Park in Simi Valley on July 4th from 3pm to 9pm, followed by fireworks. FREE admission.

Calabasas

The City of Calabasas 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular at Calabasas High School opens at 5 p.m. with fireworks at 9 p.m. Features live music and kids' fun zone. Tickets are limited and must be purchased in advance. $10 admission includes parking, entertainment and activities. Children under 2 are free. Food and beverages will be offered for sale.

Other Calabasas 4th of July activities include a free Summer Splash Party from noon to 5:30pm, a Pet Show at Calabasas Lake at 11am and the 41st Annual Lakeside Fun Run 4 mile, 2 mile, 1/2 mile and 1/4 mile events in the morning.

Camarillo

The annual fireworks at Camarillo High School are a “go” for 2019 at 9PM but due to anticipated construction at the stadium, activities will be limited. No coolers, umbrellas, chairs, etc. allowed due to space constraints. Gates open at 7PM. Free of charge. Space will be limited because the football field will not be available. MORE DETAILS AT THIS LINK

Another option is to watch the fireworks from Pleasant Valley Fields on the other side of the 101.

Free swimming at the Pleasant Valley Aquatic Center from 1-4 pm on July 4th.

Oxnard/Channel Islands Harbor

Start your holiday with the 16th Annual Channel Islands 4th of July 5K & 10K races. Flat, fast and fun!

Independence Day activities all day long on July 4th at the Channel Islands HarborAfter the 5K/10K, family fun at the Marine Emporium Landing from 11am to 9pm will include a crafters' market, inflatable fun zone, rock climbing wall and food booths. 4th of July Children's Parade starts at 10:30am at Albacore Way, travels north up Harbor Blvd. and ends near Marine Emporium Landing.

At 6 p.m., more than 50 patriotic themed electric boats will cruise around the Harbor in the 3rd Annual 4th of July Electric Boat Parade. The Annual Fireworks by the Sea starts at 9 p.m.

Ventura

The City of Ventura 4th of July Street Festival and 44th Annual Pushem-Pullem Parade are free, with the parade starting at 10am, street fest on Main Street and side streets with over 200 artisans, food booths, vendor displays and live music.

The Rotary Club of Ventura hosts its 24th Annual Fireworks Show and Family Picnic again this year on July 4th at the Ventura College Athletic Field starting at 5pm, featuring a family picnic, live music, kids' fun zone, followed by fireworks show at 9pm! Tickets at the gate $8 adults, $6 ages 4-12.

Ojai

The annual Ojai Independence Day parade will take place at 10am on July 4th. Live music and fireworks show will take place at Nordhoff High School Stadium, starting at 5 pm. Fireworks will begin at 9:15 am. Presale tickets for the nighttime event are available. Details at www.4thofjulyinojai.com.

Fillmore

The 33rd Annual Sespe Creek Car Show is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on July 4th and the City of Fillmore fireworks show starts around 9:15 p.m. at Fillmore Middle School.

The Fillmore & Western "Firecracker Train" departs at 6:30PM for a BBQ dinner and ride, topped off with a viewing of the City of Fillmore fireworks display.

Fillmore & Western July 4th Festival Train Rides at 10am, noon and 2pm. One hour rides on vintage diesel trains!

Santa Paula

Fireworks show planned at Harding Park, 1300 E. Harvard Boulevard at 9pm.

Agoura Hills

On Sunday, July 7th, the City of Agoura Hills presents a free concert at Chumash Park followed by a laser show. Concert starts at 6pm.

Woodland Hills

The Valley Cultural Center in Woodland Hills hosts its July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza featuring free concert at 6pm, followed by fireworks at approximately 9 p.m.

Carpinteria

The 22nd Annual Rods and Roses Classic Car Show will take place on Saturday, June 29th, from 10 am to 3 pm, followed by an Independence Day Parade at 5 pm.

Santa Barbara

The 55th Annual 4th of July Parade starts down State Street at 1pm.  Lots of activities all day near the beachfront hosted by the City of Santa Barbara and SPARKLE and of course fireworks at West Beach at 9 p.m.

Malibu

The City of Malibu does not host a public fireworks display but the LA County Fire Dept approves permits for private fireworks displays off of barges in the ocean. Locations in 2019 include Paradise Cove and Malibu Colony.

Displays are scheduled to begin at approximately 9:00 PM and conclude by 10:00 PM in compliance with Malibu Municipal Code Section 9.36.010.

CLICK HERE FOR LOCAL AREA BEACHES SPANNING FROM MALIBU TO SANTA BARBARA

FREE AND NEARLY FREE SUMMER MOVIES IN AND AROUND VENTURA COUNTY

FREE CONCERTS AND LIVE MUSIC THIS SUMMER IN AND AROUND VENTURA COUNTY

Jumping and Climbing Options In and Around Ventura County

If your kids are bouncing off the walls around the house and need to jump off some steam, perhaps they need a new environment for jumping and/or climbing in and around Ventura County. Here are some options to consider.

DojoBoom Extreme Air Sports opened at the Janss Marketplace in Thousand Oaks in November 2017, offering over 50,000 square feet of trampolines, launching decks, foam pits, obstacle course, climbing wall and much more.

Sky Zone Trampoline Park is located at 2825 Johnson Drive in east Ventura. Similar to Sky High, Sky Zone offers wall to wall trampolines with open jump sessions, a "SkySlam" court and more.

Platinum Sports Center is located at 160 W. Cochran Street in Simi Valley, offering, among many other things, an indoor trampoline court for bouncing off the walls and play slam dunk volleyball, dodgeball and other fun activities during open gym time.

Boulderdash Indoor Rock Climbing at 880 Hampshire Road, Suite A, Thousand Oaks, is a 10,000 sq ft climbing area with sections ranging from 25 feet to 45 feet tall. Fun for all ages.

An additional Boulderdash Indoor Rock Climbing opened at 2879 Seaborg Avenue, Suite 101, Ventura in January 2019. This facility is also 10,000 sq ft.

The Agoura Hills/Calabasas Community Center at 27040 Malibu Hills Road, Calabasas features, among other things, a 35 foot rock climbing wall.

Santa Barbara Rock Gym is an 8,500 sq ft facility located at 322 State Street, Santa Barbara.

Sky High Sports - The Trampoline Place in Camarillo used to be an option…but closed in the summer of 2018 . But there's also a Sky High Sports in Woodland Hills.

Not for the inexperienced...rock climbing at Westward Beach in Malibu.

Not for the inexperienced...rock climbing at Westward Beach in Malibu.

For more seasoned climbers, there is a sheer cliff used by rock climbers at Westward Beach in Malibu as well as near the Rock Pool at Malibu Creek State Park.