Things to Do With the Kids in Ventura County When It's Wet Outside

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It doesn't rain nearly often enough here in Ventura County, but when it does, that's a great excuse for staying inside. You are in the right place as we have compiled this extensive list of well over 200 indoor activities from Agoura to Simi Valley to Ventura and everywhere in between!

Arts and Crafts

These are just a sampling of the various activities and events in Conejo Valley Guide, so make sure to explore and find something fun to do!

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Highlights of a Dozen Fun Things to See and Do In and Around Camarillo

Residents voted to incorporate Camarillo as a city on September 29, 1964 (the same day that Thousand Oaks residents voted to do the same). Today Camarillo has the 5th largest population out of 10 cities in Ventura County, with about 66,000 residents.

One neat feature of Camarillo is its revitalized Old Town on Ventura Boulevard, a one mile stretch adjacent to Highway 101 between Lewis Road and Carmen Drive. There is a mixture of eateries, galleries, salons, boutiques and shopping along the pedestrian friendly thoroughfare that has transformed the area. Parking is free. More at www.facebook.com/camarillooldtown.

Here are a dozen other fun things to explore, see and do in Camarillo:

The roughly 2 mile Calleguas Creek Bike Path from Pleasant Valley Fields to the corner of Flynn and Upland Road in Camarillo is a family favorite, providing 4 miles of bicycling round-trip. The path is adjacent to Calleguas Creek with several street under crossings, keeping the path completely free of vehicular traffic.

Calleugas Creek Bike Path

Calleugas Creek Bike Path

McGrath Family Farm off the Central Avenue 101 offramp grows organic fruits, vegetables and flowers and is open 7 days a week from spring through fall. McGrath also offers farm tours, visits with the farm animals and "pick your own" produce. A quick, healthy and fun stop with the kids.

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The Commemorative Air Force Southern California Wing Aviation Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday at the Camarillo Airport with hangars devoted to preserving, displaying and flying World War II aircraft. Docents are extremely knowledgeable and eager to share information.  This is a Camarillo must-see.

Also at the Camarillo Airport is the annual Wings of Camarillo Air Show in the August time frame. This is a weekend display of restored World War II military aircraft in flight, aerobatic, vintage and experimental aircraft displays, classic cars and plenty of family fun. This is one event in Camarillo that you have to see up close at least once. Visit wingsovercamarillo.com for more information.

Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

Photo Credit: Scott Harrison

The Camarillo Ranch House is a 3-story, 14 room, 6,000 square foot Victorian home built by Adolfo Camarillo in 1892. The City restored the beautiful home to what it looked like during the 1914 to 1930 time frame. Today the house is a popular event venue and is open for docent-led tours several days a week. The Camarillo Ranch was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2003.

The Camarillo Ranch House is a popular wedding and other special events destination.

The Camarillo Ranch House is a popular wedding and other special events destination.

I'm amazed at how few of the people I talk to have heard of the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology, more popularly known as the Camarillo Bird Museum. The 22,000 sq ft non-descript facility in an industrial office park hosts a collection of over 250,000 sets of bird eggs representing approximately 4,000 species; 18,000 nests and 56,000 bird study skins. The Museum is open for tours less than a dozen times per year and is a local "you have to see it to believe it" collection.

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The Camarillo Premium Outlets is Ventura County's premiere outlet mall, featuring over 160 shops and eateries. As a local, my preference is to visit the Outlets during weekdays due to their extraordinary popularity (hint: crowds) on the weekends, but weekends are fun too. On the east side are the original outlets, including the Main Court and Fashion Court, while on the west is the newer The Promenade section. In between is the Edwards Camarillo Palace 12, another of my favorite places to be in Camarillo.

Harley's Camarillo Bowl is the go-to spot for most kids that I know in the Conejo Valley who throw bowling birthday parties. I know because when the kids go bowling, I make sure to join them. Harley's gets the job done with 20 lanes, a small arcade, and a bar that serves up cold beer (a required feature for me to take my mind off how lousy I bowl).

There are dozens of great farmers' markets around Ventura County, including the Saturday morning Camarillo Certified Farmers Market in Old Town Camarillo from 8am to noon.

There are a number of nicely appointed parks of all shapes and sizes in Camarillo, including six larger parks. One of my favorites is the hidden away Camarillo Grove Park at the bottom of the Conejo Grade. It is not the largest park or have newest playground equipment, but what it does have is several miles of hiking trails and a dog park that makes it a fun destination for many.

A trail at Camarillo Grove Park

A trail at Camarillo Grove Park

The Pleasant Valley Historical Museum is dedicated to the preservation of local history and the adjoining Charles L. Honn Botanical Garden features plants and trees indigenous to the Pleasant Valley and the surrounding region. Both are fun, short, worthwhile visits, which is good because the Museum and Garden are only open from noon to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, except holidays. Admission is free.

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 is at 880 Hampshire Road, Suite A, Thousand Oaks, 10,000 sq ft climbing area with sections ranging from 25 feet to 45 feet tall. Fun for all ages. We've enjoyed some fun birthday parties here. Boulderdash also has a facility in Chatsworth.

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 (originally opened in 2010). 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.

Sixteen Things to Do In and Around Agoura Hills

Sixteen Things to Do In and Around Agoura Hills

The City of Agoura Hills was incorporated as a city in 1982, becoming the 83rd city in Los Angeles County. The city is 8.2 square miles in size and is considered to part of the Conejo Valley, lying between the Santa Monica Mountains and Simi Hills. Its boundaries are roughly east of Lindero Canyon Road on the west (bordered by Westlake Village), south of Agoura Road on the south, portions of Chesebro Road on the east (including part of the Liberty Canyon Road area) and on the north, just above Fountainwood and Timberlane Streets (with Oak Park lying

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Conejo Creek Park North in Thousand Oaks is a Perennial Family Favorite

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On a recent visit to Conejo Creek Park North, located at 1379 East Janss Road, Thousand Oaks, we were surprised when we found dozens and dozens of koi in the lower pond area, cohabitating with the ducks.

Where did they come from? We don't know, but there are sure fun to watch.

Where did they come from? We don't know, but there are sure fun to watch.

Conejo Creek Park North is one of the nicest, widest appealing parks throughout Ventura County. You get almost everything at this park. This 44 acre park has two ponds with a stream connecting them, two separate play areas, beach-style volleyball courts, a NEOS game, multiple large, shaded picnic areas. a fitness trail about 2/3rds of a mile that circles the park, plenty of shade trees and multiple large, grassy areas. Something for everyone.

Topping it off is the fact that the park is adjacent to the beautiful Grant R. Brimhall Library, Goebel Senior Center and Thousand Oaks Teen Center. We often park at the library, check out some books, then walk, scooter or ride across a bridge to the park. It is a great way to spend the day.

Conejo Creek Park North is extremely popular for larger events on the upper grass area adjacent to the largest picnic structure. There is plenty of parking available. And in the middle of the park is a jungle-like trail area that I enjoy exploring with the kids. We also see birthday party celebrations all the time.

To learn more about Conejo Creek Park North, visit the Conejo Recreation and Park District website at www.crpd.org. To learn about other parks we enjoy in and around Ventura County, click THIS LINK.

Forty-Seven Things to Do In Thousand Oaks

The City of Thousand Oaks was incorporated on September 29, 1964. Most of Newbury Park was annexed by the city in the 1960s/1970s. Casa Conejo, Newbury Park's first planned community built in the early 1960s and the Lynn Ranch area of Thousand Oaks are unincorporated areas of Ventura County that technically are not annexed into the City of Thousand Oaks. Why that is, I'm not sure. The City of Thousand Oaks also annexed the Ventura County portions of Westlake Village in 1968 and 1972. A bit complicated, eh?

Enough history for now! Let's look at the future...like tomorrow or this coming weekend. Here are 47* things to do in the City of Thousand Oaks in random order.

*It started out as 47 things to do but we've lost count since originally posting this.

View of Boney Mountain from the Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa area.

View of Boney Mountain from the Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa area.

Older version of City of Thousand Oaks sign.

Older version of City of Thousand Oaks sign.

Over 140 Summer Camps and Programs In and Around Ventura County

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Looking for a summer camp within range of Ventura County? Here's a list of over 140 summer day camps and residential camps and programs in the area. Actually, there are hundreds and hundreds of individual camps available.

We've attempted to categorize the camps into three main groups; Traditional/Learning, Sports and Music/Arts, though many camps cover numerous fun activities all in one.

Know of more? Submit them here!

No doubt there will be some typos/errors on this list, so let us know if you find one.

*Updated for 2019

Traditional Day Camps, Overnight Camps, Educational Camps and Other Camps

Sports Camps

Music/Arts/Science Camps