The Corriganville Movie Ranch Site in Simi Valley is a Ventura County Historical Landmark

The Corriganville Movie Ranch Site in Simi Valley was designated a historical point of interest by the Ventura County Cultural Heritage Board in January 1982, then subsequently was redesignated as a historical landmark in August 1995.

Corriganville was a 1,500 acre piece of land in Simi Valley purchased by western film star Ray “Crash” Corrigan in 1937. The site was a working movie ranch for nearly three decades, and was used in the making of roughly 3,500 western films and television series such as Fort Apache, The Lone Ranger, and The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin. Actors like John Wayne, Gene Autry, Johnny Weissmuller, Tex Ritter, Joel McCrea, Dale Evans and so many others filmed movies here.

Corriganville today...the ranch burned down in the 1970s, leaving just these cement slabs and exterior walls.

Corriganville today...the ranch burned down in the 1970s, leaving just these cement slabs and exterior walls.

In 1949, the ranch opened to the public as “Corriganville,” a western themed amusement park. The ranch was later purchased by Bob Hope in 1965, deeming the ranch its alternative name, Hopetown. The ranch burned down in the 1970s and all that is left are the cement slabs and exterior rock walls of the barn. 

View of Corriganville Park from a trail on the east side of the park. The trail takes you up to 118 Freeway and a wildlife corridor tunnel that takes you under the freeway into Rocky Peak Park.

View of Corriganville Park from a trail on the east side of the park. The trail takes you up to 118 Freeway and a wildlife corridor tunnel that takes you under the freeway into Rocky Peak Park.

In 1988, 190 acres of the original ranch was purchased by the City of Simi Valley and is now managed by the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District. Corriganville Park is located at 1601 Kuehner Drive, Simi Valley and is open to the public for hiking, walking and exploring. For a detailed compilation of historical aspects of the site, visit www.corriganville.net.

A photo of the Corriganville Movie Ranch when it was an active movie set. Learn more about Corriganville and see a model of what it looked like in the 1960s at the nearby   Santa Susana Depot Museum  .

A photo of the Corriganville Movie Ranch when it was an active movie set. Learn more about Corriganville and see a model of what it looked like in the 1960s at the nearby Santa Susana Depot Museum.

Newbury Park High School Boys Cross Country Team Wins Woodbridge Classic in Record Time, Led by Record-Shattering Nico Young

Record-setting Newbury Park High School Boys Cross Country Team receiving post-race accolades.

Record-setting Newbury Park High School Boys Cross Country Team receiving post-race accolades.

I had the good fortune to witness first-hand last night’s record shattering performance by the Newbury Park High School Boys Cross Country Team at the 39th Annual Woodbridge Cross Country Classic at the Silverlakes Sports Complex in Corona.

Newbury Park, along with several other local area teams, was invited to participate in the Sweepstakes finale, featuring 32 top teams.

(Truth be told, I wouldn’t miss this event as I have a son that runs on this fantastic team!).

Nico’s Performance

Senior Nico Young obliterated the previous course record time of 13:58 with a time of 13:39.70, a time that MileSplit notes is the nation’s fastest high school 3 mile cross country effort of ALL TIME. Yes, you heard it right. He didn’t just break the record. He stomped all over it by over 15 seconds!

Nico is a certified rock star! I can certify that as I was witness to numerous fans requesting photos with this standout who also won the Woodbridge Invitational last year along with the California Division II cross country and 3200 meter track championships.

The Team’s Performance

The rest of the team last night included senior Jace Aschbrenner (2nd overall in 14:04.8), junior Nick Goldstein (7th in 14:25.6), sophomore Colin Sahlman (10th in 14:26.9), junior Daniel Appleford (24th in 14:36.7), freshman Lex Young (25th in 14:37.4) and junior Thomas McDonnell (33rd in 14:44.9). There were 240 participants in the race.

The top 5 scoring members of the team set a course record of 1:11:10.0, or an average of 14:14 per runner. This was not just the course record. It is the fastest high school 3 mile team time ever run on California soil!

This group of Newbury Park athletes has been training diligently all summer long for this season. And it shows. A second team of outstanding runners competed in the Rated race and finished in 4th place.

And let’s not forget the up and coming girls team, which competed in the 3 Mile Girls Sweepstakes event immediately preceding the boys event Saturday night. A fantastic showing by the girls resulted in 5th place, just 38 points away from the 1st place team. The top 5 scoring members of the girls team included junior Fiona Hawkins (18th overall in 16:53.7), senior Archana Mohandas (31st in 17:08.5), sophomore Sam McDonnell (35th in 17:12.3), freshman Ailish Hawkins (63rd in 17:39.8) and senior Gretchen Slattum (64th in 17:40.6).

Kudos to Coach Sean Brosnan, who is in his 4th year coaching at NPHS. He correctly predicted the strong team showing the day before the race in this runnerspace.com interview.

Record-setting Nico Young joyful immediately after the race with Coach Sean Brosnan.

Other local top 25 showings in the Sweepstakes races included Thousand Oaks High School senior Michael Mireles (4th place overall in 14:17.6) and Moorpark High School senior Keith Murray (23rd in 14:35.9). Junior Jill Walker from Simi Valley High School finished 13th overall in 16:49.6.

Rankings

On August 23rd, DyeStat/RunnerSpace published pre-season national high school cross country team rankings. Newbury Park was ranked 4th on this list, behind Great Oak, CA (#1), Corner Canyon, UT (#2) and Loudoun Valley, VA (#3).

Well guess what…Newbury Park beat the #1 ranked Great Oak last night by a score of 36 to 69. Great Oak is a fantastic program and last year’s winner at this event as well as reigning 2018 Division 1 state champions.

This could be interesting.

Cross Country Scoring

For those unfamiliar with how cross country scoring works, teams are allowed up to 7 runners in the race, but only the top 5 are included in the scoring. First place receives 1 point, 55th place receives 55 points, and so on. The fastest 5 runners on each team are added together for the score.

So no matter how fast an individual runs, for the team, what counts the most is the placing. The lowest possible point total is 1+2+3+4+5 for 15 points. Newbury Park scored 38 last night.

The Future

Aside from setting personal records, Nico and his team are focused on winning the California Division 2 state championship for the 2nd year in a row. Then they want to compete in the Nike Cross Nationals (NXN) and win the national title. Newbury Park finished 6th in last year’s NXN in its first appearance at that invitation-only event.

Congratulations, team! For updates, visit www.newburyparkcrosscountry.com.

Former Olympia Farms Property on the Rancho Potrero Open Space

The Rancho Potrero Open Space area is located in Newbury Park off of Lynn Road, just east of the intersection with Rancho Dos Vientos. The area includes an equestrian center where the former Rocking K Horse Rentals (now Rancho Potrero Community Equestrian Center) is located and is adjacent to the Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa area in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.

On the west end of the space is a a property that used to be called Olympia Farms, which was owned by Greek immigrant, textile businessman and Arabian horse breeder George Patarias Huck. (Huck was tragically shot and killed in front of his home in Mt. Olympus in August 1984 at age 46.)

Huck's 640 property was sold to the Mountains Recreation and Conservancy, City of Thousand Oaks, Conejo Recreation and Park District and National Park Service for $4.2 million in 1993. 312 acres were carved out as an addition to Rancho Sierra Vista. The remainder is part of Rancho Potrero, which is maintained by the Conejo Open Space Conservation Agency (COSCA).

You can explore the Olympia Farms area when hiking in the area, to find large piles of old ranch buildings.

These old ranch buildings are actually a Ventura County historical point of interest that was designated as such in May 1986. According to the City of Thousand Oaks, there were two large barns built in 1930 on the Dos Vientos Ranch. Joseph Lewis, business partner of City of Camarillo namesake Adolfo Camarillo, farmed 8,000 acres of land in this area. The barns were dismantled to make room for home development in Dos Vientos and the lumber currently resides here. The Conejo Recreation & Park District is working with the Conejo Valley Historical Society in finding other appropriate uses for these materials, such as displays at the Stagecoach Inn Museum in Newbury Park.

Historic 1930 Dos Vientos Ranch buildings dismantled on stored here

Historic 1930 Dos Vientos Ranch buildings dismantled on stored here

Zuma Beach in Malibu, One of the Largest and Most Popular Beaches in Los Angeles County

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Zuma Beach is located at 30000 Pacific Coast Highway.. At four miles long, Zuma is one of the largest and most popular beaches in Los Angeles County,

Zuma is known for its long, wide sands and excellent surf, as well as plenty of facilities, including several food stands, restrooms, showers and volleyball. The Zuma boardwalk is well over a mile and a great place to take a walk.

There are over 2,000 parking spaces in the massive parking lot. Parking varies but ranges from $8 to $15 (summer weekends).

Visit beaches.lacounty.gov/zuma-beach for more information.

NOTE: Fires, including BBQs, are not allowed on any beach in Malibu; the exception is that fires may be allowed in designated spots at some state beaches. Dogs are not allowed on state beaches.

Zuma Beach boardwalk is great for walking.

Zuma Beach boardwalk is great for walking.

Seabirds like it here too.

Seabirds like it here too.

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Scenes Near the Corner of Thousand Oaks Boulevard and Rancho Road in 1970

Conejo Valley Days Parade 1970 with auto promoting Sizzler.

Conejo Valley Days Parade 1970 with auto promoting Sizzler.

Some of you may remember the Sizzler restaurant on Moorpark Road that is now a Hooter's. Well, before that, there was a Sizzler at 1259 East Thousand Oaks Boulevard, in a space that today (thanks to a generous donation from Thousand Oaks Storage) is the home of affordable housing non-profit Many Mansions.

Thousand Oaks Sizzler on Thousand Oaks Boulevard, just east of Rancho Road, in 1970

Thousand Oaks Sizzler on Thousand Oaks Boulevard, just east of Rancho Road, in 1970

Many Mansions moved in Spring 2015 at the long ago former home of the first Sizzler restaurant in Thousand Oaks.

Many Mansions moved in Spring 2015 at the long ago former home of the first Sizzler restaurant in Thousand Oaks.

Sizzler was directly east of the Enco gas station at the corner of Thousand Oaks Boulevard and Rancho Road.

Enco was a short-lived brand name from the Humble Oil Company, which is now part of ExxonMobil. Apparently it translated into "stalled car" in Japanese.

Conejo Valley Days Parade 1970 at intersection of Thousand Oaks Blvd and Rancho Road.

Conejo Valley Days Parade 1970 at intersection of Thousand Oaks Blvd and Rancho Road.

Notice the Shell gas station across Rancho Road in the above photo. Today of course a different kind of fuel is served there at the first Thousand Oaks Drive-Thru Starbucks. I also notice the gas price at that time was 28 9/10th cents a gallon.

Conejo Valley Days 1970 Enco Station

Today, there is a Chevron station located at this former home of Enco. It is the exact same building shown above! But instead of "Happy Motoring!" there's a sign on the building that says "Food Mart."

This Chevron station is the former home of the Enco station pictured above.

This Chevron station is the former home of the Enco station pictured above.

Conejo Valley Days Parade 1970 Chicken Delight

And this last photo shows a 23 North sign west of Rancho Road. Partially hidden behind that sign is a Chicken Delight that was located at 1165 E. Thousand Oaks Boulevard. Today, the closest Chicken Delight is in Winnepeg, Canada. 

Nicholas Canyon County Beach in Malibu, East of Leo Carrillo State Beach

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Nicholas Canyon County Beach is 1 mile east of Leo Carrillo State Beach at 33850 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. This is a nice beach where you can hang out, fish, picnic, surf and go for a great walk in about 25 acres. There's a decent sized parking lot with 150 spaces available, as well as parking on PCH. Parking costs range from $3 to $10 (as of July 2019), depending on time of the year. There are also portable restrooms on hand as well as showers and picnic benches. More information at beaches.lacounty.gov/nicholas-canyon-beach.

LA County beach rules at https://beaches.lacounty.gov/la-county-beach-rules/ - as an fyi, animals (including dogs), alcohol, smoking, fires/BBQ and amplified music are allowed.

View from the top of hte staircase near the parking lot.

View from the top of hte staircase near the parking lot.

Bench yourself for some nice views of the Pacific Ocean.

Bench yourself for some nice views of the Pacific Ocean.

View looking northwest towards Leo Carrillo.

View looking northwest towards Leo Carrillo.

Century Lake at Malibu Creek State Park

According to the Malibu Creek Docents, around 1903, the Crags Country Club constructed a 50 foot tall dam on its 2,000 acre property on what is now Malibu Creek State Park. The dam created a seven acre lake that club members used for fishing and duck hunting.

The Club closed in 1936, and 10 years later, 20th Century Fox Studios purchased the property to film movies and TV shows on what was renamed Century Ranch. The 1968 "Planet of the Apes" featured many prominent scenes shot here.

This is an awesome video showing Planet of the Apes (1968) film scenes at Malibu Creek State Park and local area beaches then and today.

As for the lake, it is now referred to as Century Lake, a hiking destination in Malibu Creek State Park. Only 1 1/2 miles from the parking area, Century Lake is in a secluded area, where you can eat your lunch at the picnic table and enjoy serenity (usually, depending on who else is there). I believe it is fine to wade in the water and even kayak in there if desired. although I've never seen anyone do so.

Century Lake is a left hand turn from the main Crags Road trail, after cresting the only significant hill going down the other side. The only indicator is this narrow sign.

Century Lake is a left hand turn from the main Crags Road trail, after cresting the only significant hill going down the other side. The only indicator is this narrow sign.

The hike has a moderately steep hill in it, but otherwise is quite flat and easy to do with kids and/or a stroller.

Malibu Creek State Park has something for everyone...camping, a visitor center, the "Rock Pool," the M*A*S*H set, the old Reagan Ranch, Century Lake, over 35 miles of trails, rock climbing (near the Rock Pool) and more.

The Century Dam is shown in this image. You don't wanna fall down that dam. Off limits.

The Century Dam is shown in this image. You don't wanna fall down that dam. Off limits.