This summer make it a point to spend some quality time with family and friends exploring some of the many exciting activities and events around town and (not too far!) beyond. Both young and old will enjoy making memories to last a lifetime.
Keeping cool in the pool tops every kids’ (and kids at heart) summer to-do list. Plan an afternoon to meet up with friends at one of the local public pools open to the public during the summer. Both Newbury Park and Thousand Oaks High School pools have designated open swim days, as does the Olympic-size pool at Cal Lutheran University. For a fun twist, check out the Family Float Nights or Dive-In Movies at Ventura Aquatic Center (901 S. Kimball Road, Ventura).
Gather the family and friends and order a pizza or bring a picnic dinner to enjoy a family-friendly movie from the cool waters of the Aquatic Center! Dive-In Movies screen July 5 and 19 and August 2 and 16, from 7:30-9:30 p.m. $5/person.
Family Float Nights take place from 6:45-8:45 p.m. July 12 & 26 and August 9. Families can bring their pool floats and order pizza or bring food and enjoy a fun evening together. CityOfVentura.CA.Gov/612/Aquatics
Music fills the air this summer, with free outdoor concerts throughout the Conejo Valley. Concert series include the 2019 Summer Concerts in the Park, sponsored by the City of Agoura Hills Department of Community Services and The Acorn Newspapers. Concerts begin at 6 p.m. at Chumash Park, 5550 Medea Valley Drive in Agoura Hills.
The line-up includes:
· July 7: Don’t Stop Believin’ (Journey Tribute)
· July 21: Conejo Valley Community Concert & Jazz Band (at Agoura High School)
· August 4: The Long Run (Eagles Tribute)
· August 18: Captain Cardiac & The Coronaries
The Free Summer Concert Series at the Janss Marketplace is on Wednesday evenings (6-8 p.m.) through July 24. The line-up:
· 7/10: Lights (Journey Tribute)
· 7/17: Space Oddity (Bowie Tribute)
· 7/24: Uptown Funk (Bruno Mars Tribute)
“A Country Fair with Ocean Air”
The 144th Ventura County Fair features 12 days of fun, excitement, education and entertainment for the whole family, beginning July 31 and running through August 11.
Enjoy vendors, arts, crafts, food, exhibits, displays, demonstrations, farm animals, a petting zoo, carnival rides, games and entertainment. Nightly entertainment starts at 7:30 p.m.:
· 7/31: Styx
· 8/1: Martina McBride
· 8/2: Melissa Etheridge
· 8/3: Ohio Players
· 8/3: The Emotions
· 8/3: Evelyn “Champagne” King
· 8/4: Dia de la Familia Concert (3 p.m.)
· 8/5: X Ambassadors
· 8/6: Tommy James and the Shondells (1 p.m.)
· 8/6: Brothers Osborne
· 8/7: Daughtry
· 8/8: George Thorogood and the Destroyers “Good to be Bad Tour”
· 8/9: Collective Soul
· 8/10-11: P.R.C.A. Pro Rodeo (2 and 7 p.m.)
Gather on the lawn at Cal Lutheran University at 5:30 p.m. for pre-show picnics and entertainment during the 23rd season of the popular outdoor theatrical performances by the Kingsmen Shakespeare Company.
William Shakespeare’s “The Merry Wives of Windsor” takes place July 5-7 and July 12-14, and “Richard II” runs July 19-21, July 26-28 and August 2-4. General admission is $25 for adults, $20 for seniors 65 and over, $15 for students with ID and free for everyone under 18. Reserved lawn boxes have room for six and are available online for $90 to $110. KingsmenShakespeare.org
Just a short and scenic drive about an hour north brings you to the beautiful city of Santa Barbara. During the summer months, Santa Barbara hosts a variety of festivals, cultural events and activities for families young and old to enjoy. Visit the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden (1212 Mission Canyon Road), a 78-acre living museum designed completely with California-native plants and featuring five miles of easy walking trails that crisscross the wild-crafted gardens, plus sweeping views of the San Ynez Mountains and Santa Barbara’s Channel Islands. Kids will especially love exploring the Redwood Forest and spotting turtles in the Bessie Bullard Pond.
This summer also features a special exhibition, Garden Casitas: Playhouses Designed with Nature in Mind. Opening July 1, the inspiring installation includes a collection of original playhouses constructed primarily of plant-based materials to encourage kids of all ages to play in nature while sharing the importance of plants in everyday life.
Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors (60+), $8 for children age 13–17, college students and active military with ID and $6 for children age 2–12. SBBG.org
Dinosaurs and butterflies at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History (2559 Puesta Del Sol) will delight all ages. “Prehistoric Forest Discover Dinosaurs in the Wild” invites visitors to take a stroll back in time and come face-to-face with hand-crafted moving animatronic dinosaurs, including a Tyrannosaurus rex, the formidably armored Stegosaurus, high-crested Parasaurolophus, Triceratops and Ankylosaurus mamas with their young.
“Butterflies Alive” allows guests to walk through a beautiful garden with nearly 1,000 live butterflies fluttering freely. The dazzling variety of butterflies includes local favorites and exotic tropical varieties. Both exhibits are included in Museum admission ($15, adults; $12, seniors and teens; $9, children; 2 and under free).
For sea life encounters, visit their sister Sea Center at the historic Stearns Wharf. Unique events and special educational programming include the Live Dive series and a touch-tank where visitors can interact with sharks, rays, sea stars, sea urchins and sea anemones. SBNature.org