Picks of the Week - Happenings

By Chris O'Neal and Michel Miller 02/27/2014

OJAI MARDI GRAS Saturday and Sunday, Mar. 1-2.
The Ojai Mardi Gras Wake Up! Krewe will host this year’s celebration. The magic of this year’s theme, The Wizards of Odd, invites your creative soul to dress up and sashay out. The masquerade ball on Saturday includes a costume contest with special prizes, endless dancing and mind-blowing costumes. $20-$25. Ojai Art Center, 113 S. Montgomery St., Ojai. For more information, visit www.ojaimardigras.com.

RICKIE BYARS-BECKWITH Friday, Feb. 28, 7-8:30 p.m.
Agape International Choir musical director Rickie Byars, “godmother of inspirational funk,” will perform “Love Emerging,” a compilation of her inspirational music with the theme of “Bringing Water to Dry Land.” $20-$25. Center for Spiritual Living, 880 Hampshire Road, suites V and W, Westlake Village. For more information, visit www.cslwestlake.org.

Three blues legends team up to bring their signature sounds to the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza. Bishop, known as A founding member of the groundbreaking Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Elvin has performed and recorded with music legends such as B.B. King, John Lee Hooker and the Allman Brothers. Cotton, is a Grammy-winning blues harp legend now in his 69th year as a professional musician, and Thorn is known for his muscular brand of roots music. $39-$49. Scherr Forum Theatre, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., 800-745-3000.

PORTUGESE FRATERNAL SOCIETY OF AMERCA MEETING 11:30 a.m. The PFSA will gather to discuss matters of Portugal and share a lunch. The PFSA officers will also be present. Holiday Inn Express, Windjammer Room, 1080 Navigator Drive, Ventura. For more information, call 483-6285. 
WAR HORSE 7 p.m. Pre-recorded live from London’s West End, this one-night event, based on Michael Morpurgo’s novel and adapted for the stage by Nick Stafford, takes audiences on a journey of courage, loyalty and friendship. $13-$15. Century Riverpark 16, 2766 Seaglass Way, Oxnard. For more information, visit www.cinemark.com
WISH NIGHT CELEBRATION 2014 6:30 p.m. This event will celebrate wishes and raise funds for more wishes through silent and live auctions, plus a special Fund-A-Wish program where people can fund full or partial wishes. Hyatt Westlake Plaza, 880 S. Westlake Blvd., Westlake Village. For more information, visit tri-countieswish.ticketleap.com/2014.
BOYS & GIRLS’ CLUB YOUTH OF THE YEAR BENEFIT 6:30-9 p.m. With a multitude of stars, including hip-hop artist Poet Ali and screen actor McKenna Grace, plus the pop family musical Twinkle Time, the organization will recognize local youth and volunteers who have made significant contributions to the Boys and Girls’ Club. Fred Kavli Theater, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit www.bgcconejo.org.
CENTER FOR AUTISM AND RELATED DISORDERS, OBAMACARE WORKSHOP 10 a.m.-noon. Attendees will learn what insurance companies will and will not cover, types of plans and rules regarding coverage, effective strategies to maximize benefits and how to understand the complexities of different insurance carriers under the ACA. 325 E. Hillcrest Drive, suite 140, Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit www.centerforautism.com
COMMUNITY CULTURAL ROCK MUSIC CONCERT 8 p.m. (and Sunday, Mar. 2, 2 p.m.). Featuring vintage American rock group Iron Butterfly and its 1968 hit “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” with all proceeds going to benefit nonprofit kid artist student scholarships. Yolie’s, 138 W. Main St., Ventura. For more information, visit www.concertartshow.org
MUSEUM OF VENTURA’S BEE MURAL UNVEILING 2-4 p.m. The free event will include admission to the galleries, crafts, activities and photos with everyone’s favorite honey-loving bear!  Meet artist MB Hanrahan during a honey tasting reception provided by Bennett’s Honey Farm. Museum of Ventura County’s Agriculture Museum, 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. For more information, visit www.venturamuseum.org.
THE PAST 3:30 p.m. (and 6:30 p.m). An Iranian man reunites with his estranged wife (Bérénice Bejo) in Paris to finalize their divorce, which is soon complicated by a shocking revelation by her daughter from a previous marriage. $6.25-$9.75. Plaza Cinemas 14. 255 W. 5th St., Oxnard. For more information, visit www.oxnardfilmsociety.org.
LORD CAITANYA DISCUSSION 7:30 p.m. Lord Caitanya appearance will be discussed at the American Vedic Association Bhagavad Gita As It Is Fellowship: Discover how this expansion of God appeared as his own devotee and revolutionized the course of religious history.  Learn how the bhakti path he taught is spreading worldwide at the next AVA gathering. 687 W. Villanova Road, 640-0405.
DAS EXPERIMENT 7 p.m. This 2001 German film features a journalist who joins an experiment offering 4,000 marks to people willing to submit to a psychological test in which half of the volunteers will pose as prison guards and the other half will be their prisoners. Lundring Events Center, CLU Campus, 60 W. Olsen Road, #1800, Thousand Oaks. For more information, call 493-3436 
STEPHEN HICKS PRESENTS “POSTMODERNISM AND ITS DISCONTENTS” 2 p.m. Hicks will discuss postmodernism’s themes and origins and its disquieting prospects for the future and will explore why its arguments have such power in the contemporary intellectual world and why they have that power in the humanities but not in the sciences Overton Hall, CLU Campus, 3163 Regent Ave., Thousand Oaks. For more information, call 493-3232.
THE BOYS NEXT DOOR Feb. 28 through March 6. Elite Theater presents this story that takes place in a communal residence where four mentally handicapped men live under the supervision of an earnest, but increasingly “burned out” young social worker named Jack. we are reminded that the handicapped, like the rest of us, want only to love and laugh and find some meaning and purpose in the brief time that they, like their more fortunate brothers, are allotted on this earth. $15-$18. 2731 S. Victoria Ave.,Oxnard. 483-5118 or www.elitetheater.org.
SHREK: THE MUSICAL March 1 through April 6. The stage adaptation of the Disney film is presented by Actors’ Repertory Theatre of Simi. $18-$25. 3050 E. Los Angeles Ave., Simi Valley. 583-7900 or www.simi-arts.org.
50/50  Through March 2. Elite Theater presents this poignant play about four women, friends since childhood, who reunite for a weekend in a ski condo when one of them becomes ill. $20. 2731 S. Victoria Ave., Oxnard, www.elitetheatre.org.  
DEADMAN’S CELL PHONE Through March 16. Santa Paula Theater Center presents Sarah Ruhl’s new comedy, the first Main Stage production of the 2014 Season. Ruhl comments on the social mores of modern life when technology intervenes in the insightful comedy.  “That commonplace gadget you are advised to turn off when the lights of the theater go down, or when the plane takes off, becomes a mysteriously powerful totem of transformation in Dead Man’s Cell Phone,” said Charles Isherwood of the New York Times. $15 or $20. 125 S. Seventh St., Santa Paula. 525-4645 or www.santapaulatheatercenter.org.
FIDDLER ON THE ROOF Through March 9. Rich in historical and ethnic detail, this beloved musical has touched audiences around the world with its humor, warmth and honesty. The universal theme of tradition cuts across barriers of race, class, nationality and religion, leaving audiences crying tears of laughter, joy and sadness. $17-$25. High Street Arts Center, 45 E. High St., Moorpark, www.hsac45.com.  
IPHIGENIA: A TRAGICALLY FUNNY COMEDY Through March 16. The Flying H Group presents a modern take on the classic tale. King Agamemnon prepares to lead the greatest coalition of armies in the history of the world to retrieve Helen of Troy. Throw in his spunky daughter Iphigenia, a hunky Achilles, a comical puppet army, the Mighty Myrmidons, and you have the makings of a Greek tragedy with a twist. $15-$18. 6368 Bristol Road, Ventura, www.flyinghgroup.com
ROALD DAHL’S WILLY WONKA Through March 30. $10-$18. Based on the beloved film and book, Willy Wonka is the timeless tale of the mysterious candy man as he stages a contest involving five hidden Golden Tickets that allow five special children into his factory and a lifetime supply of free candy as well. 330 Skyway Drive, Camarillo, www.skwayplayhouse.org.
VENTURA IMPROV COMEDY Fridays and Saturdays, 8 p.m. Ventura Improv Company (VIC) presents hilarious improvisational comedy. The VIC’s Fresh Fridays are intended to showcase the talents of improvisers of all experience levels; newer improvisers rock it out with veteran VIC members. All shows will be a competitive comedy improv format where the improvisers are given challenges by the show’s host or director. The audience can judge the action! Saturday shows feature experienced veteran players. 34 N. Palm St., Ventura. 643-5701, www.venturaimprov.com.
CSUCI March 3-21. “Dreams, Fables & Histories, Captured and Framed,” a student exhibition of time-based media art, curated by CI digital media lecturer Elizabeth Leister. Reception with the artists will be held on Thursday, March 6, 6-8 p.m. CI Palm Gallery, 92 Palm Ave., Camarillo, inside the Camarillo Smiles Dental building. For more information, call 437-2772.
AGRICULTURE MUSEUM March 1 through June 15. Museum of Ventura County’s Agriculture Museum in Santa Paula, will present the first exhibition of “The Vernacular Bestiary: Animal Snapshots from A to Z.” This collection of anonymous amateur photographs has been collected by photographer John Nichols over the past two decades and has never been publicly exhibited. The abecedarian display of creatures comprises photographs taken over the past 120 years. An adjacent kids’ reading and exhibit area will encourage children and their families to read and write poems, as well as draw and display their own responses to the animal-themed exhibition. Animal poems by published poets will also be shared in binders that can be carried around the exhibition area. Reception on March 22, 3-5 p.m. 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. 525-3100 or www.venturamuseum.org.
BUENAVENTURA GALLERY Through March 2. “A Few of My Favorite Things & Places,” solo exhibition by Mary Jo Murphy. She will present about 20 recent works in oil, acrylic, watercolor and Copic marker, ranging in size from 8-by-10 inches to 48-by-60 inches. Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 700 E. Santa Clara St., Ventura. 648-1235, www.buenaventuragallery.org.
“CHANNEL ISLANDS MARITIME MUSEUM Through March 23. “Local Color: Three Photographers,” featuring work by Toshi, Michael Brodey and Jim Englund. Michael Brodey, a photographer for the U.S. Coast Guard and the Coast Guard Auxiliary, has 50 years’ experience as a noted outdoorsman and dramatic landscape photographer. Jim Englund, a commercial and industrial photographer, currently works in a style characterized by brilliant, saturated color and in a large format. Toshi, inspired by the light of the coastal environment, augments his images with LED bulbs selectively placed in a handcrafted light box/frame. Reception on Saturday, March 1, 6-7:30 p.m. 3900 S. Harbor Blvd. 984-6260 or www.cimmvc.org.  
COUNTY GOVERNMENT CENTER Through March 4. “Facebook Profile Pictures: Your Image on the Internet” and “A Wrinkle in Time: A Celebration of the Joys, Struggle, Triumphs and Legacies of Ventura County Seniors.” Atrium Gallery in the Hall of Administration. 658-2213 or www.venturacountyartscouncil.org.   
FOX FINE JEWELRY Through March 8. “Speed and Grace,” works by JoAnne Duby, Sherron Sheppard and Joanna Spinks. Hours: Monday  through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays, 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. 210 E. Main St., Ventura, 652-1800.   
LATITUDES FINE ART GALLERY Ongoing. The photographic collections of Steve Munch and Stephanie Hogue, including color and black and white images of local landmarks, beautiful scenery and coastal wildlife. Hours: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. daily. Open until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 1591 Spinnaker Drive, #13, Ventura Harbor Village, 642-5257.    
MUSEUM OF VENTURA COUNTY Ongoing: Permanent exhibitions include a collection of artifacts from Chumash Indian life, the George Stuart Historical Figures® and various fine-art pieces by local artists. Hours: Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; First Fridays, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. 100 E. Main St., Ventura. 653-0323 or www.venturamuseum.org
OJAI GALLERY 353 Ongoing. Coastal Central California and Ojai Valley plein air, oil, pastel and watercolor paintings by Ventura County artists, including Norman Kirk, Ruben Franco, Lynn Byrne Simon and Emily Goldfield. A large-scale outdoor corten steel sculpture by  Mark Benker. Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, noon-6 p.m.  353 Montana Road, Ojai. 798-0010 or OjaiGallery353.com
OVA ARTS Ongoing. Gallery features fine art and contemporary craft by 39 artists, including Merilee Eaton, Gayle Childress and Peggie Williamson.  Ceramic arts, sculpture and textiles by local artisans such as Julie Wellings and Patty McFall are also on display. 108 Signal St., Ojai, 646-5682.  
RED BRICK GALLERY Through March 18. “Longevity,” featuring a variety of colorful and dynamic scenes with subjects of strength that have weathered time. Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. 315 E. Main St., Ventura. 643-6400, www.RedBrickArt.com.   
SANTA PAULA ART MUSEUM Through June 22. “Watercolors and Woodblocks: Jesse Arms Botke.”  $10 members, $15 nonmembers. 117 N. 10th St., Santa Paula. 525-5554 or www.santapaulaartmuseum.org.    
VENTURA COUNTY POTTERS GUILD GALLERY Ongoing: various unique ceramic works by local artists on exhibit and for sale. 1567 Spinnaker Drive, suite 105, Ventura Harbor Village. 644-6800.
VITA ART CENTER Through Feb. 28. “Pamela Grau: Unified Emergence.” Pamela Grau searched inside and out for images and materials that would support her creative path. In 2009, while being treated for cancer, a new body of work emerged that was devoid of storytelling. The core of this current work is about spirit contained within design, color and texture. It is about expansion and containment. It invokes our most primal responses to nature. Pictured is her “Pod Infestation,” an ongoing installation made from discarded socks. Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; weekends by appointment.Bell Arts Factory, Studio 30, 432 N. Ventura Ave., Ventura. 644-9214, www.vitaartcenter.com.
AGRICULTURE MUSEUM Ongoing: collections of farming machinery and implements from Ventura County’s rich agriculture history plus paintings by local artists that depict farming life. Current exhibition started March 30. 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. 525-3100 or www.venturamuseum.org
CALIFORNIA OIL MUSEUM Ongoing: exhibits that detail the history of the oil industry in Ventura County. A 1900 iron-and-timber, full-size operating drilling rig is one of the major permanent attractions. Hours: Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m-4 p.m. 1001 E. Main St., Santa Paula. 933-0076, www.oilmuseum.net
CHANNEL ISLANDS MARITIME MUSEUM Ongoing. “Dutch Skies: Four Centuries of Seascape Paintings” can be seen in the museum’s recently designed and lighted galleries. Stand next to the antique cannon guarding “The Gun Deck” and the formidable battle paintings. Enjoy the panoramic harbor view as a backdrop to the “armada” of historic ship models in the North Gallery. Every day, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 3900 Bluefin Circle in the Channel Islands Harbor, Oxnard, 984-6260.  
DUDLEY HOUSE MUSEUM Ongoing. A fully furnished, restored 1892 Victorian farmhouse once owned by a pioneer family in Ventura. Guided tours, 1-4 p.m. every first Sunday. Corner of Loma Vista Road and Ashwood Avenue. 642-3345 or www.dudleyhouse.org.  
MULLIN AUTOMOTIVE MUSEUM Ongoing: Display of French vintage art deco cars, including Bugattis, Delages and Voisins. Open Saturdays by reservation. $12. 1421 Emerson Ave., Oxnard. 385-5400, www.mullinautomotivemuseum.com
MURPHY AUTO MUSEUM Ongoing: Cars from every period on display, including Packards. Hours: Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. $5-$9. 2230 Statham Blvd., Oxnard. 487-4333, www.murphyautomuseum.org.    
RANCHO CAMULOS MUSEUM Ongoing. A national historic landmark that preserves the rancho California culture with adobe buildings. Also the location and inspiration for the famed novel Ramona. Tours by appointment. Closed to public tours in December and January and during inclement weather.  
REAGAN LIBRARY Through March 9.  “SPY: The Secret World of Espionage” features more than 300 documents and spy gadgets, many never before seen by the general public. Ongoing: Permanent collection includes exhibits that document President Ronald Reagan’s life, featuring a re-creation of his Western-style oval office, a piece of the Berlin Wall, and Air Force One. Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday. 40 Presidential Drive, Simi Valley. 800-410-8354, www.reaganlibrary.com
WORLD WAR II AVIATION MUSEUM Ongoing. Southern California Wing of the Commemorative Air Force hangars featuring World War II aircraft. Flight demonstrations and cockpit viewings. Camarillo Airport, 455 Aviation Drive, Camarillo, 482-0064.

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