Picks of the Week - Happenings

By Chris O'Neal and Michel Miller 08/28/2014

Friday, Aug. 29, through Sunday, Aug. 31.

The annual Ventura Nationals return to the Fairgrounds with custom vehicles, handmade merchandise and artwork from local and national artists. Musicians headlining this year’s event include Big Jay McNeely and James Harman. On Friday night, an art show at the Majestic Ventura Theater will feature motor-driven artists from 6:30 to10:30 p.m. On Saturday, the Car and Motorcycle Show will take over the Fairgrounds from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m, and on Sunday a charity run and barbecue will begin at 10:30 a.m. Prices vary. For more information, visit www.venturanationals.com.

Monday, Sept. 1, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Visitors can view rare tractors and talk to the tractors’ owners as well as view a working vintage engine demonstration. A kids’ zone will also be on site. $5 for the kids’ zone. Museum of Ventura County, Agriculture Museum, 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. For more information, visit www.venturamuseum.org

Friday, Aug. 29, through Sunday, Aug. 31.

Ventura Improv Company’s annual Labor Day event this year will feature Now Town and the Understudies from L.A. and ChImps Improvisers from the Chadwick School in Palos Verdes. Highlights include the Alumni Show on Friday and the grand finale showdown. Prices vary by performance. A full event pass is $40. 34 N. Palm St., Ventura. www.venturaimprov.com/festival.

DINNER AND A MOVIE FEATURING MAMMA MIA 8 p.m. A gourmet food truck and beverages will be available for a singalong of the film Mamma Mia, starring Pierce Brosnan (Remington Steel) and Meryl Streep (Mamma Mia). $10. Museum of Ventura County, 100 E. Main St., Ventura. For more information, visit www.venturamuseum.org.
FREE CONCERT FEATURING DIRTY RICE 6-8 p.m. Popular reggae band Dirty Rice will perform as part of this concert series in Oxnard. $5-$60. Heritage Square, 715 S. A St., Oxnard. For more information, visit www.heritagesquareoxnard.com.
VENTURA IMPROV FESTIVAL 8 p.m. (through Sunday, Aug. 30). Special guests and a huge improv showdown and more will open the festival, with many activities planned for the weekend. Ventura Improv, 34 N. Palm St., Ventura. For more information and for a full schedule, visit www.venturaimprov.com.
BEGINNER UKELELE CLASS 11 a.m.-noon. The library is hosting a free class to learn the basics of playing the ukulele. Instruments will be available to check out at the front desk. E.P. Foster Library, 651 E. Main St., Ventura. For more information, call 648-2716.
MUSIC UNDER THE STARS: SKINNY LITTLE TWITS 7:30-9:30 p.m. Classic rock band Skinny Little Twits will perform as part of this series of concerts at the Olivas Adobe. $20. Olivas Adobe, 4200 Olivas Park Drive, Ventura. For more information, visit www.cityofventura.net/mus.
TRAVIS BRASS QUINTET: UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND OF THE GOLDEN WEST 7 p.m. A brassy blend of sound, style and humor make Travis Brass an entertaining ensemble, composed of two trumpets, a horn, trombone, tuba and percussion. Libbey Bowl, 210 S. Signal St., Ojai. For more information, visit www.libbeybowl.org.
VENTURA RACEWAY: MOTORCYCLES, QUADS & SPEEDWAY BIKES 3 p.m. gates. The Ventura Raceway returns for the summer, this time featuring motocrcyles, quads and bikes. Ongoing. $11-$15. Ventura County Fairgrounds, 10 Harbor Blvd., Ventura. For more information, visit www.venturaraceway.com.
CHILI COOK-OFF AND MUSIC FESTIVAL 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Celebrate the annual chili cook-off with an ICS-sanctioned chili competition, live music by UnUsual Suspects, The Hodads and Sgt. Pepper, a classic car display, a Texas Hold ’Em poker tournament and a Kids’ Zone. $10. Camarillo Ranch, 201 Camarillo Ranch Road, Camarillo. For more information, visit www.camarillochilicook-off.com.
MEDIUM TIM BRAUN: AWAKENING YOUR SIXTH SENSE 12:30-3:30 p.m. This spiritual workshop will try to answer the question of whether or not there is life after death. $30-$35. Center for Spiritual Living, 880 Hampshire Road, suites V and W, Westlake Village. For more information, visit www.cslwestlake.org.
CONEJO VALLEY’S LABOR DAY CONCERT: LED ZEPAGAIN 5 p.m. The only Led Zeppelin tribute band endorsed by rocker Jimmy Page himself will perform. Conejo Community Park, 1175 Hendrix Ave., Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit www.crpd.org/concerts.
SANTA PAULA LABOR DAY PARADE 10 a.m. Walking groups with banners, musical groups, floats, workers riding in work-related vehicles, equestrians and all groups representing a Labor Day theme will walk the main drag in celebration of Labor Day. Parade starts at Seventh and Main streets, Santa Paula. For more information, visit www.ci.santa-paula.ca.us.
CAL LUTHERAN CONVOCATION 9:30 a.m. Faculty and administrators will assemble in full academic attire to welcome about 800 freshmen and new transfer students. California Lutheran University, 60 W. Olsen Road, #1800,  Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit www.callutheran.edu.
VENTURA COUNTY GARDEN CLUB MEETING 1 p.m. This will be a meet and greet or welcome-back meeting to review proposed programs or to get feedback from members on other topics of interest. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 117 N. Seventh St., Santa Paula. For more information, call 889-1969.
THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK Aug. 29 through Sept. 20. Conejo Players presents a newly adapted version of the dramatic true story of people hiding from Nazis during World War II as told through the eyes and ears of a young girl. $16-$18. 351 S. Moorpark Road, Thousand Oaks. 495-3715 or www.conejoplayers.org.
OF MICE AND MEN Aug. 29 through Sept. 21. Ojai ACT presents John Steinbeck’s moving story of a deep friendship among workers who dream of a better life but are thwarted by prejudice and cruelty. $10-$18. 113 S. Montgomery St. 640-8797 or www.OjaiACT.org.                
GODSPELL Through Aug. 31. The Actors’ Repertory Theatre of Simi presents one of the biggest off-Broadway successes, with music and new lyrics by Stephen Schwartz. Based on the gospel according to Matthew, it features memorable and inspirational music as well as clowning, pantomime, acrobatics and other traditional theater arts. $18-25. Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center, 3050 Los Angeles Ave., Simi Valley. 583-7900 or www.simi-arts.org.
GUYS AND DOLLS Through Sept. 21. High Street Arts Center presents the classic Broadway musical about crazy love. $16-$25. For tickets call 529-8700 or visit www.highstreetartscenter.com.
LA INFAMIA/INFAMY Through Sept. 6. Teatro de las Americas presents this play by avant garde Mexican playwright Oscar Liera that compassionately explores themes of family dysfunction. For mature audiences. $5-25. Oxnard College Black Box Theatre. For more information, call 983-2876 or visit www.teatrodelasamericas.org
MY SON THE WAITER: A JEWISH TRAGEDY Through Sept. 19. Brad Zimmerman’s hysterical and bittersweet tale of his 29-year struggle to “make it” in New York as an actor and comedian while “temporarily” waiting tables to make a living. Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. 449-2100 or www.toaks.org.
TALLEY’S FOLLY Through Sept. 14. Skyway Playhouse presents this Pulitzer and Drama Critics’ Circle award-winning play set in real time about an unlikely love affair. $10-18. 388-5716 or www.skywayplayhouse.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.
BELL ARTS FACTORY Through Aug. 30. Museum of Ventura County presents “Womb with a View,” selected works by Sara Thomas. Hours: noon to 4 p.m. Saturdays and by appointment. Tool Room Gallery, 432 Ventura Ave., Ventura. 653-1174, www.bellartsfactory.org.
BUENAVENTURA GALLERY Through Sept. 6. “Journeys Through Peace,” watercolor paintings by Laura Walter. Reception on Sept. 5, 5-8 p.m.  Hours: Tuesday through Saturday,   11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 700 E. Santa Clara St., Ventura. 648-1235 or www.buenaventuragallery.org.
CARNEGIE ART MUSEUM  Through Sept. 15:  Paintings and installation by CAM studio artist Yenting “Ryo” De Smidt. Hours: Thursday through Saturday, 10 a.m-5 p.m.; Sunday, 1-5 p.m. 424 S. C St., Oxnard. 385-8158, www.carnegieam.org.
FOX FINE JEWELRY Through Nov. 2. “Visions From the Third Planet,” a solo exhibition of work by Steve Cook, whose colorful photorealistic paintings have been used on wine labels, national advertisements and magazines. Hours: Monday through Thursday, 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays, 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sundays, noon to 6 p.m. 560 E. Main St., Ventura, 652-1800.
FRED KAVLI THEATRE GALLERY Through Aug. 27. “ExpressionsX3” features more than 40 works in a variety of mediums by Southern California artists Kiar Mesko, Christy Botkin Reeves and Jay Smithline. 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks.
GALERIE 102 Through Sept. 14. “Cycles and Spires,” an exploration of the cyclical nature of life and death through continual motion in different mediums featuring paintings by James Wills and sculpture by Elisa Berry Fonseca. 102 W. Matilija St., Ojai, 640-0151.
GALLERY 525 Through Aug. 30. Recent works by printmakers Asandra and Bruce Samia. 525 W. El Roblar Ave., Ojai. 798-0407 or www.gallery525.com
HARBOR VILLAGE GALLERY Through Sept. 2. “Water, Rocks and Trees: Life into Art,” a duo exhibit by photographer Darlene Roker and painter Deborah De Bono. Hours: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. daily except Tuesdays. 1591 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura Harbor Village.
HILLCREST CENTER FOR THE ARTS Through Sept. 29. “Ripples*Waves*Curls,” a multimedia group show that uses summer in Southern California as its subject. 403 W. Hillcrest Drive, Thousand Oaks. 381-2747 or www.hillcrestarts.com.
KWAN FONG GALLERY Through Oct. 2. “The Journey,” works by Carolin Peters. Reception on Sept. 6, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Soiland Humanities Center at Cal Lutheran University, 60 W. Olsen Road, Thousand Oaks, 444-7716.
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.-8 p.m. daily. 401 E. Main St., Ventura, 279-1221, www.latitudesfineart.com.
MUSEUM OF VENTURA COUNTY Through Aug. 31, “Who’s Minding the Store: The Small Grocery Business in 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, Gayel 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 Sept. 16. “Sun Drenched,” featuring art that explores rhythm, movement and light travel. 315 E. Main St., Ventura. 643-6400 or redbrickart.com.  
SANTA PAULA ART MUSEUM Through Nov. 2. “Quintessential California,” more than 60 paintings that highlight the enduring beauty of the Golden State, by members of the California Art Club. $10 members, $15 nonmembers.  Through Oct. 12: “From Wet Plate to Pixel: Three Centuries of Photographic Processes.” This photography exhibition features work by Ventura County fine-art photographers, including Luther Gerlach, Stephen Schafer, Lis Schwitters, Lisa Dodge and Jim Fitzgerald. Explore the variety of processes being practiced locally, from historical to contemporary. 117 N. 10th St., Santa Paula. 525-5554 or www.santapaulaartmuseum.org
SESSIONS AT THE LOFT Through Sept. 30. “Saving Africa,” nature photography by Christopher Ward. 2465 Ventura Blvd., Camarillo. 383-3333 or www.sessionsattheloft.com.   
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 Aug. 31. “Mini Survey (1984-2014),” a retrospective by Michael Dvortcsak. Dvortcsak’s credentials include bachelor of art and master of fine arts degrees from the University of California at Santa Barbara, where he has also lectured and taught for several years. Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and weekends by appointment. Bell Arts Factory, Studio 30, 432 N. Ventura Ave., Ventura. 644-9214, www.vitaartcenter.com.  
WILLIAM ROLLAND GALLERY Through Sept. 11. “The Beautiful: Contemporary Art Featuring America” features works by various artists that exemplify the diversity and beauty of American life. California Lutheran University, William Rolland Stadium, 160 Overton Court, Thousand Oaks, 493-3697.     
AGRICULTURE MUSEUM Ongoing: Antique farming equipment and various displays relating to the history of agriculture in Ventura County. 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. 525-3100 or www.venturamuseum.org
CALIFORNIA OIL MUSEUM Through Sept. 7: “A Tribute to the Musicians of Santa Paula.” 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 redesigned 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.oilmuseum.net.  
MULLIN AUTOMOTIVE MUSEUM Through Dec. 31. “The Art of Bugatti,” featuring vintage French art deco cars and art by the Bugatti family. 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. 5164 E Telegraph Road, Piru. 805-521-1501, www.ranchocamulos.org.  
REAGAN LIBRARY Through Sept. 4. “Baseball: The Exhibit.” featuring memorabilia that include Babe Ruth’s bat, Joe DiMaggio’s record-setting baseball and rare trading cards. 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
SEABEE MUSEUM Ongoing. “The Century Before Seabees: The Bureau of Yards and Docks (BuDocks), 1842-1942.” The U.S. Navy Seabee Museum is the second-oldest official Navy museum in the nation. The mission of the Seabee Museum is to select, collect, preserve and display historical material relating to the history of the Naval Construction Force. Hours: Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Ventura Road and Sunkist Avenue, in Building 100 at Naval Base Ventura County, Port Hueneme. 
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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