Ventura, CA - Gingerbread houses became popular way back in 19th century Germany. The tradition, which German immigrants brought to America, lives on in a big way at three Ventura County West hotels. Gingerbread houses as high as six feet tall are in the lobbies of the Pierpont Inn, Four Points by Sheraton Ventura Harbor Resort and at the Residence Inn by Marriott at River Ridge in Oxnard.

“We bake everything on site that goes into building the gingerbread houses,” says Ignacio Cortez, director of food and beverage for both the Pierpont Inn and Four Points. “Each house takes one week to bake and one week to put together.” Cortez has been creating gingerbread houses for the hotels for 16 years.

To build the Four Points 5' by 5' by 6' foot gingerbread house, Cortez and his staff used an impressive amount of ingredients: 600 pounds of flour, 200 pounds of sugar, 135 dozen eggs, 120 pounds of icing, eight pounds of ginger, five pounds of cinnamon, four pounds of nutmeg, 10 gallons of molasses and 20 pounds of candy.

"The smell of the ginger hits hotel visitors the minute they walk into the hotel and some cannot resist sneaking a taste when they think we aren’t watching,” continues Cortez. “Even though I have been doing this for 16 years, I never get tired of it. I even bake and build gingerbread houses at home, which are a huge hit with my grandchildren."

"There is something about these gingerbread houses that brings a smile and a sense of wonder to everyone who sees them. They certainly put you in the holiday spirit," says Victor Dollar, regional manager, Brighton Management and chair of the Ventura County Lodging Association. (VCLA). The VCLA is a marketing organization promoting VenturaCountyWest, highlighting the travel options, special events and things to do in the cities of Camarillo, Oxnard and Ventura.

Visitors can enjoy the gingerbread houses until just after the New Year. For addresses of the three hotels, go to the VenturaCountyWest website, www.VenturaCountyWest.com .

Ventura County Lodging Association (VCLA)
The Ventura County Lodging Association (VCLA) is comprised of lodging facilities and destination marketing organizations in the California cities of Camarillo, Oxnard and Ventura. VCLA represents 61 members including hotels, motels, bed & breakfasts, RV Resorts, resort rentals, the Camarillo Chamber of Commerce, Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau and Ventura Visitors & Convention Bureau. Its marketing campaign, "VenturaCountyWest, Inspiring Choices," is designed to attract overnight leisure and business visitors to the region. www.venturacountywest.com www.facebook.com/venturacountywest

 


 

WHAT: Big Brothers Big Sisters presents a musical evening with Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone, one of Rock and Roll's finest and most versatile entertainers. The Benefit Concert includes the comedic talent of Louis Ashamallah,“The Conejo Valley’s Favorite Egyptian Comedian” as our Master of Ceremonies. One of the original British invasion bands, Herman’s Hermits will provide an evening that everyone can enjoy, while at the same time being champions for youth mentoring during National Mentoring Month.

HOW: The Benefit Concert offers an exclusive pre-concert reception for VIP ticket holders (VIP Tickets are $150*) with drinks and appetizers, as well as a meet and greet with our Stars and special guests. Peter Noone will be signing a Line 6 Guitar that will be live auctioned at the Benefit Concert and we will have other one-of-a kind items, including a Hawaiian Resort stay donated by the Hogan family. The silent auction will have an array of items to bid on including sports memorabilia, gift baskets and jewelry. Our VIP reception starts at 5:30 p.m., doors open at 6:00 p.m. and our concert program begins at 6:30 p.m. Additional tickets are $75*, $60*, $40*, and can be purchased online at www.bbsvc.org, Ticketmaster.com/800.745.3000, or at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza Box Office, civicartsplaza.com. *Plus facility and surcharge where applicable

WHY: Benefit Concert helps raise invaluable financial resources to support the high-impact mentoring programs and services of Big Brothers Big Sisters, which currently serves more than 1,500 youth throughout Ventura County and neighboring communities. The participation of youth and their families in a nationally recognized, preventative mentoring program is transforming their lives for the better, forever and guiding their trajectory to become productive and responsible citizens now and in the future. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County has been serving the youth in Ventura County since 1970 and is the top ranked youth mentoring organization in the country by Guidestar’s Philanthropedia, because of its evidence-based mentoring model with proven youth outcomes.

WHO: Enjoy a crowd of more than 1,800 musical enthusiasts and the generous sponsors who support Big Brothers Big Sisters including Wells Fargo, Summit Business Management, Select Staffing, Ventura County Star, Gold Coast Broadcasting, Marketing Maven, California Pizza Kitchen and the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.

WHEN/WHERE: Benefit Concert will be held at the Fred Kavli Theatre in the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza located at 2100 Thousand Oaks Blvd in the City of Thousand Oaks on Sunday, January 13, 2013 with doors opening at 6:00 p.m. and showtime starting at 6:30 p.m.

We invite individuals, companies and organizations to consider advertising and sponsorship opportunities by contacting Terri Felix at 805.484.2282 x 23 or by e-mailing tfelix@bbsvc.org. Visit our website at
www.bbsvc.org or call 805.484.2282 for additional event updates. Facebook Event Page: http://www.facebook.com/events/127489910738487/

 


 

Oxnard, CA – It’s that time of year to catch a glimpse of nature during Whale Watching Season taking place off the coast of Oxnard. The season officially begins the day after Christmas, December 26 and continues through mid April 2013.

Both Islands Packers, Ventura County’s official concessionaire to the Channel Islands National Park and Channel Islands Sportfishing Center offer whale watching excursions directly from Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard to see these magnificent mammals. Island Packers offers 3 ½ hour non-landing narrated trips with morning and afternoon departures available. The fare is $35 for adults; $32 for seniors 55+; $25 for children (3-12); and free for children 3 and under.

Channel Islands Sportfishing Center provides whale watching excursions during the week and on the weekends. Rates are $40 for adults; $35 for seniors; and $25 for children under 12.

Every year, an estimated 20,000 to 25,000 Pacific Grays Whales migrate through the Santa Barbara Channel on their way to and from the warm lagoons of Baja California, Mexico. A journey through the Channel Islands National Park and National Marine Sanctuary provide visitors the unique opportunity to experience the splendor and beauty of these giants of the deep. Besides whales, visitors often encounter dolphins, seals, sea lions and a rich variety of bird life, some of which are endangered and protected.

For more information on Oxnard’s Whale Watching Season, call 1-800-2-OXNARD or visit the website at www.visitoxnard.com.

About Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau (OCVB) is a non-profit organization designed to increase visitor expenditures, and tourism revenue opportunities through the promotion of Oxnard as a premier travel destination. Oxnard is an easy drive up the coast from Los Angeles or from the northern portions of California. Visitors are encouraged to enjoy Oxnard’s uncrowded beaches, explore the many diverse attractions and outdoor adventures that are unique to the area. A wide variety of hotel accommodations are available ranging from mid-priced rooms to oceanfront and seaside settings. For more information, call the California Welcome Center at 805-988-0717. To obtain tourism information on Oxnard, visit the website at
www.visitoxnard.com

 


 
Windy Bazaar, watercolor by Fredda Leiter
Windy Bazaar, watercolor by Fredda Leiter
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Travel and art are linked in the life of Fredda Leiter, a Ventura artist whose watercolor paintings will be exhibited starting Dec. 19 at Harbor Village Gallery in a show titled “Outside Time When Circling the Globe.”

“Each moment is connected to all others, and also stands alone. A painting can capture a moment, engaging our eyes, emotions and physical sensations,” said Leiter, whose solo exhibition of small pieces (most 9 by 12 or 12 by 16 inches) will run through Jan. 14. An artist’s reception will be held 5-8 p.m. Dec. 21 in the gallery at Ventura Harbor.

Leiter has traveled widely around the world and a favorite destination is Italy, which she has visited four times, twice on watercolor class study tours. Italian landscapes are truly “outside time,” said Leiter, who once viewed a 200-year-old fresco in a church, then stepped outside to behold the same vista.

She photographed many scenes and subjects in her travels before she began painting and Leiter said some of those early slides and prints still provide inspiration for her art. “Some paintings live in my head for a long time, and a lot of work happens inside the brain. My goal is to think of the photograph as a starting point and then to decide what to throw away or move around.”

A favorite painting so far for this show, she said, is of a rhinoceros parent and child from one of her trips to Africa.

Leiter’s art studies and career began in 1999, first with classes in drawing, then in painting in oils. Her focus shifted to watercolors in 2006, when she enrolled in a watercolor class trip to Italy and took a class to prepare. Since then, she has continued to study locally and in workshops around the country with noted watercolorists.

She said, “Watercolor is a medium that challenges us. How much do we control? How much control do we relinquish? The unexpected effect can vitalize a painting.”

Most challenging, she said, is knowing when to stop, “when to take my hands off it.”

Watercolor is a difficult medium, said Leiter, but it’s “not in my nature to try something easy.” Learning to create art started with “a leap of faith,” she said, like many other accomplishments in her life, including entering medical school 10 years later than most of her classmates.

Now a practicing psychiatrist, Leiter said she devoted many more hours than usual to her artwork in preparation for this show but that the extra practice has increased her skill. “Having to carve out time to create paintings for the show has been very productive!”

Another benefit is that the act of painting and spending time with these scenes takes her back in time to the trips she has enjoyed. “It’s a delight to travel around the world and find universal moments that inspire,” Leiter said.

The gallery at 1591 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura Harbor Village is open noon-5 p.m. daily except Tuesdays. For more about the exhibit or the nonprofit Buenaventura Art Association, call 648-1235 or visit the website www.buenaventuragallery.org.

 


 

The Santa Paula Art Museum is excited to announce its preparation for a retrospective featuring Santa Paula artist Robert Clunie. It is to open on July 27th, 2013. We are seeking paintings from the entire span of his artistic career. “We are interested not only in the paintings but stories that might go along with them”, said Jennifer Heighton, Executive Director. If you have a Robert Clunie painting that you find particularly unique and would be willing to loan to the Museum for their exhibition, please call Jennifer Heighton or Julie Cluster at (805) 525-5554 or email to info@SantaPaulaArtMuseum.org.

The Museum is located at 117 North 10th Street, Santa Paula, CA 93060. The Museum’s regular hours are Wednesday – Saturday, 10 AM – 4 PM, and Sundays, 12 PM – 4 PM.

 
Music, comedy and storytelling shows in lineup

THOUSAND OAKS, CA - KCLU will broadcast several local and national holiday specials during the next few weeks.

“Hanukkah Lights” will air at 9 p.m. Dec. 8. National Public Radio’s Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz will read Hanukkah stories and memoirs written specifically for the show by acclaimed authors.

“Blues Shack All Holiday Special” will air from 2 to 5 p.m. Dec. 9 and 16. It will feature rarely heard renditions of holiday favorites and some unique selections from the KCLU blues library.

“Tinsel Tales,” which will be broadcast from 7 to 9 p.m. Dec. 24 and 9 to 11 a.m. Dec. 25, is a collection of the best and most-requested holiday stories. National Public Radio voices from the past and present will tell tales overflowing with joy, hope and childhood memories.

“‘A Christmas Carol’ with Jonathan Winters” will air at 9 p.m. Dec. 24. The master comedian presents a distinctive reading of Charles Dickens’ holiday classic.

At 10 p.m. Dec. 24, a recording of The High Street Broadcast’s presentation of “Thank Your Lucky Stars” will air. The send-up of the holidays will be staged Dec. 19 at the Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center.

“Jazz Piano Christmas” will be broadcast at 11 p.m. Dec. 24. This concert from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts will feature National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master Ellis Marsalis, Jason Moran, Geri Allen,Taylor Eigsti and other artists performing their favorite songs of the season.

“Christmas With Morehouse and Spelman Glee Clubs” will air at midnight Dec. 24. The choirs of two of the nation’s most prestigious historically black colleges will perform together.

KCLU will broadcast “Capitol Steps: Politics Takes a Holiday” at 9 p.m. Dec. 31. The performers will roast 2012 to a crisp with their annual year-in-review awards ceremony.

Programming is subject to change.

KCLU, a community service of California Lutheran University, is the NPR station serving Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Please can listen in Ventura County at 88.3 FM, in Santa Barbara County at 102.3 FM and 1340 AM, and online at kclu.org.

 
“On the Midway” by Jack Halbert, Best of Show in 2012, BAA’s 26th Annual Open Competition
“On the Midway” by Jack Halbert, Best of Show in 2012, BAA’s 26th Annual Open Competition
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Buenaventura Art Association announces a “Call for Entries” for the 27th Annual Open Competition at the Buenaventura Gallery in downtown Ventura’s cultural district. The exhibit will run from January 8 through January 26, 2013. Deadline for entries is midnight December 31, 2012. Over $1,500 in cash prizes and membership benefits will be awarded at a reception and ceremony on Saturday, January 12 from 4 – 7 pm, including a $400 top prize for Best of Show. Katrina McElroy, art instructor at Moorpark College, will be the juror.

McElroy earned her Master of Fine Arts with distinction from California State University at Northridge. She received her BA in Fine Art from Reed College in Portland, Oregon and studied at Il Bisonte, International School of Graphic Arts in Florence, Italy. McElroy creates in several media, from prints to paintings, photography and video. Her work has been shown in galleries in Miami and Los Angeles, as well as galleries on the campuses of Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Chapman College in Orange, CA.

McElroy teaches two dimensional design and art appreciation at Moorpark College, as well as sculpture during summer sessions at CalArts in Valencia. Most of her current work, however, has been video and photographic installations. McElroy states that her work “addresses the tendency to analyze, compartmentalize, organize and manipulate emotion despite of, and because of, its persistence, cyclical nature and its ability to overwhelm.” In creating her work, McElroy captures spontaneous, private moments, often of herself, in moments of extreme emotion. She manipulates and rearranges the thousands of video stills from these clips into compositions and installations that deny the viewer a linear narrative. Instead, she says, “the result is an abstraction, a systematic disorganization (and reorganization) of time that in some ways more closely resembles the truth and memory of the actual moment.” To see Katrina McElroy’s art go to www.katrinamcelroy.com.

The competition is open to all artists in Central and Southern California. A prospectus may be downloaded from the Buenaventura Art Association’s website at www.buenaventuragallery.org. Entries must be submitted electronically and uploaded online at the same website.

The Buenaventura Gallery is located at 700 E Santa Clara St. in downtown Ventura. Hours are Tues – Friday from 12 – 5 pm and Saturday from 11 am to 5 pm. For more information visit the website at www.BuenaventuraGallery.org.

About the Buenaventura Art Association
Buenaventura Art Association (BAA) is a non-profit, foundational arts organization in Ventura – a 58-year-old institution devoted to sustaining Ventura County’s cultural and artistic resources by developing visual artists in all stages of their careers. BAA was started in 1954 by a group of Ventura community, civic and business leaders who recognized the importance of the arts in all communities and wanted to encourage and foster Ventura’s cultural growth. BAA runs two galleries – the Buenaventura Gallery in downtown Ventura at 700 E. Santa Clara St., and the Harbor Village Gallery, 1591 Spinnaker Dr., in the Ventura Harbor Village. BAA also collaborates with Community Memorial Hospital to exhibit art in its ground floor public corridors.

 
Mikael Oganes
Mikael Oganes
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Event highlights early 20th-century art exhibit at CLU

THOUSAND OAKS, CA - A free piano recital and expert talk will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15, in conjunction with the exhibit “Resonating Images: 1900-1950” at The William Rolland Gallery of Fine Art at California Lutheran University.

Art critic and curator Peter Frank will discuss the paintings, drawings andprints in the exhibit and answer questions from 2 to 3 p.m. Following an intermission with tea and cake, Armenian-born master pianist Mikael Oganes will perform modern variations of early 20th-century masterpieces, including works by George Gershwin and Igor Stravinsky, from 3:10 to 4:10 p.m. A concluding reception will follow.

Frank is the associate editor of Fabrik magazine and an art critic for The Huffington Post. The former senior curator for the Riverside Art Museum hasorganized shows for institutions throughout the world. The most notable among them was “19 Artists – Emergent Americans,” the 1981 Exxon National Exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

A fiery pianist, Oganes has won prizes at international competitions and wide praise for his original arrangements of symphonic works for solo piano. He is currently touring as a solo and collaborative pianist throughout North America and the Middle East and completing his debut recording with violist Victor de Almeida. He works to bring classical music to wider audiences by incorporating percussion and electronics.

“Resonating Images” is on exhibit through Feb. 2. The free exhibit features works by such prominent American artists as George Bellows, a realist known for his bold paintings of urban life in New York City, and John French Sloan, a member of The Eight whose 1908 group show created a sensation and led to the realist artistic movement known as the Ashcan School.

Two of the great painters of the American Regionalism movement, Thomas HartBenton and John Steuart Curry, are featured. Benton’s fluid, sculpted figures show people in everyday scenes from regions throughout the country, while Curry is noted for his paintings of life in his home state of Kansas. Works by two prominent German artists, George Grosz and Kathe Kollwitz, are included. Grosz is known primarily for his caricatures of Berlin life in the 1920s. Kollwitz expressed empathy for victims of poverty, hunger and war through her drawings, etchings and lithographs.

Other featured artists are Peggy Bacon, Edward Biberman, Aaron Bohrod, HansBurkhardt, Lorser Feitelson, William Gropper, Emil Kosa Sr., Georges Rouault, Millard Sheets, Max Weber and Francisco Zuniga.

The Rolland Gallery is on the north side of Olsen Road between Campus Drive and Mountclef Boulevard on the Thousand Oaks campus. It is open Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and by appointment. For more information, contact curator Jeff Phillips at 805-493-3697.

 
Recent credits include Broadway show, ‘Bourne’ film

THOUSAND OAKS, CA - Veteran actor Stacy Keach will discuss his long and successful careerfrom 7 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, at California Lutheran University.

Keach will speak before students and community members in the Preus-Brandt Forum as part of the free “Conversations With …” series. Actor and director Markus Flanagan, who teaches at CLU, will moderate an informal one-hour discussion on the craft of acting. A question-and-answer session with the audience will follow.

Although Keach is best known for his TV portrayal of the hard-boiled detective Mike Hammer, he has a long list of stage and screen credits as well. During the last year, he starred in the critically acclaimed “Other Desert Cities” on Broadway and appeared in the summer blockbuster “The Bourne Legacy.”

A Fulbright scholar to the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, Keach began his professional career in 1964 with the New York Shakespeare Festival. He received three Obie Awards for his off-Broadway performances in the 1960s and 1970s. More recently, he received three Helen Hayes Awards, which honor theater productions in Washington, D.C., for his lead roles in “The Kentucky Cycle” in 1994, “Frost/Nixon” in 2009 and “King Lear” in 2010.

His television series roles have included Ken Titus in “Titus” from 2000 to 2002, Warden Henry Pope in “Prison Break” from 2005 to 2007, and Pops in “Lights Out” in 2011. He won a Golden Globe for his performance of the title role in the 1988 miniseries “Hemingway.” His many guest roles have included Chelsea’s gay father on “Two and a Half Men” and the father of Marty Weaver on the Thanksgiving episode of the new series “The Neighbors.”

Keach began his film career in 1968 in “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” and starred as over-the-hill boxer Billy Tully in the 1972 movie “Fat City” directed by John Huston. His many other movies include “Doc,” “Luther” and “Honeydripper.”

Born with a cleft lip that was repaired, Keach is the honorary chairman of the Cleft Palate Foundation.

The “Conversations With …” talks provide theatre arts students and other aspiring actors with advice from professionals. They take the approach laid out in Flanagan’s book, “One Less Bitter Actor: The Actor’s Survival Guide,” which explains how to make it in the business of acting while staying sane and focused.

Farm Fresh Clothing Co. is sponsoring the free 2012-2013 series.

Preus-Brandt Forum is located south of Olsen Road near Mountclef Boulevard on the Thousand Oaks campus. For more information, call 805-493-3415 or email info@westlakeactingstudio.com.

 

Ojai Valley Museum Store “Holiday Book and Art Fair”
Friday, December 7, 2012
5 to 7 p.m.
Ojai Valley Museum
130 West Ojai Avenue
Ojai, CA

It’s HOLIDAY SHOPPING TIME!! You’ve made your list and you’re checking it twice, so its time to start your shopping in the Museum Store at the Ojai Valley Museum! We are hosting an extraordinary Book and Art Fair on Friday, December 7th from 5 to 7 p.m. that will encompass all of our gallery spaces. Hot cider, wine, and light fare will make your visit all the more festive. Admission will be free and we promise you a delightful gift buying experience!

The Holiday Fair will feature Ojai based writers and artists who are regularly represented in the Museum Store, but they will be bringing additional items for this December 7th event! Fifteen local authors will autograph and personalize your book purchases. Book selections will include novels, cookbooks, history, art, and biographies. The Holiday Fair will showcase six local artist’s works in glass, fiber, pottery, as well as one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces and lotions and potions produced on local farms. The selections are museum-quality, unique-to-Ojai gifts priced in the $50.00 or less range! How can you resist?

When you shop with us on December 7th, every purchase helps support the collections and exhibitions of the Ojai Valley Museum. You will be buying gifts while contributing financial support to Ojai’s ONLY museum! See you on December 7th!

The Ojai Valley Museum, established in 1967, is generously supported in part by Museum Members, Private Donors, Business Sponsors and Underwriters, the Smith-Hobson Foundation, Wood-Claeyssens Foundation, City of Ojai, Rotary Club of Ojai, and the Ojai Civic Association.

The museum is located at 130 W. Ojai Avenue, Ojai, CA. Admission: free for current 2012 members, adults - $4.00, children 6–18 - $1.00 and children 5 and under – free. Gallery Hours are Tuesday – Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Tours are available by appointment. Free parking is available off Blanche Street at back of museum.

For more information, call the museum at (805) 640-1390, ext. 203, e-mail ojaimuseum@sbcglobal.net or visit the museum website at: Ojai Valley Museum.org

 
Edward Jacob Wenig - Thesbian, Historian, Community Activist. Photo courtesy of Wenig family.
Edward Jacob Wenig - Thesbian, Historian, Community Activist. Photo courtesy of Wenig family.
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Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus - Educator, Social Innovator, Humanitarian. Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, Founder and President of NRTA-AARP, testifying before the Kefauver Committee on Hearing Aids, April 19, 1962. Photo courtesy of Archives of Ojai Valley Museum.
Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus - Educator, Social Innovator, Humanitarian. Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, Founder and President of NRTA-AARP, testifying before the Kefauver Committee on Hearing Aids, April 19, 1962. Photo courtesy of Archives of Ojai Valley Museum.
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First Grey Gables Residents - Residents of Grey Gables were committed to Dr. Andrus’s vision of the older years as a time of growth and service to others. Photo courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
First Grey Gables Residents - Residents of Grey Gables were committed to Dr. Andrus’s vision of the older years as a time of growth and service to others. Photo courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
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Grey Gables Mini Van - To service the valley’s growing senior population, Gray Gables administrator Dick York proposed several NRTA-AARP outreach programs: meals-on-wheels, a senior center, a retired senior volunteer program, and a mini-van transportation service. Photo courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
Grey Gables Mini Van - To service the valley’s growing senior population, Gray Gables administrator Dick York proposed several NRTA-AARP outreach programs: meals-on-wheels, a senior center, a retired senior volunteer program, and a mini-van transportation service. Photo courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
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Office NRTA-AARP - In 1960, Dr Andrus constructed a new office building across from Grey Gables on Montgomery Street. It operated 24 hours a day with over 200 employees making NRTA-AARP Ojai’s largest employer at the time. Photo Courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
Office NRTA-AARP - In 1960, Dr Andrus constructed a new office building across from Grey Gables on Montgomery Street. It operated 24 hours a day with over 200 employees making NRTA-AARP Ojai’s largest employer at the time. Photo Courtesy of Archives of The Gables of Ojai.
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“Shangri-la: Ojai’s Untold Stories,” the final exhibit for 2012 at the Ojai Valley Museum, will run through December 30, 2012. It features historical, primarily unknown personalities, who were directly related to Ojai and who have had great influence on the town and the nation. The five “Untold Stories” featured in this exhibit highlight the lives of Ethel Percy Andrus, Benedict Bantly, Edward Libbey, Effie May Skelton and Edward Jacob Wenig; all of whom were tenacious, passionate, political, fearless, selfless, and adventuresome movers and shakers in a wide variety of fields and endeavors.

This tour de force, original history exhibit is comprised of text and three-dimensional installation/tableaux chronicling the five personalities, plus six short stories about additional influential individuals and little known tidbits of Ojai history. The primary stories about the three men and two women, all of whom had ties to Ojai, serve to educate, enlighten, surprise and impress. Visitors will be enriched by the information within these stories and their awareness of this community will be greatly expanded.

The concept for this exhibit - to relate stories about Ojai that are not known by most people - was conceived several years ago. Four Community Curators, Patricia Atkinson, Laura Crary, David Mason and Craig Walker, researched and wrote the texts and gathered supportive ephemera for each individual/person featured in the exhibit. Michele Ellis Pracy, Ojai Valley Museum Director, curated each of their contributions to form the overall group exhibition.

Contributors to the Shangri-la exhibit include: AARP, The Gables of Ojai, Ojai Community Bank, Ojai Estate Sales, Treasures of Ojai, Jim McCarthy and Christine Brennan, La Piu Bella Tavola, Tony and Anne Thacher, Bob and Alyce Parsons, Christine Fenn, Veronica Cole – Ojai Valley Inn and Spa, Angelique LaCour, Teri Thomson Randall, Barbara and Sandy Service and Lily Liu.

The museum is located at 130 W. Ojai Avenue, Ojai, CA. Admission: free for current 2012 members, adults - $4.00, children 6–18 - $1.00 and children 5 and under – free. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Tours are available by appointment. Free parking is available off Blanche Street at back of museum.

The Ojai Valley Museum, established in 1967, is generously supported in part by Museum Members, Private Donors, Business Sponsors and Underwriters, the Smith-Hobson Foundation, Wood-Claeyssens Foundation, City of Ojai, Rotary Club of Ojai, and the Ojai Civic Association.

For more information, call the museum at (805) 640-1390, ext. 203, e-mail ojaimuseum@sbcglobal.net or visit the museum website at: Ojai Valley Museum.org

Find us on Facebook Ojai Valley Museum http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ojai-Valley-Museum/324606746779

 

Sculptor Len E. Burge III has applied his interest in particle physics to a recent series of sculpture, which he explains is an attempt to visualize the “seemingly invisible that is in a sense, the island of Santa Cruz.” His intriguing look at this island just off our coast can be seen in The Particle Garden, an exhibition of his sculpture at the Museum of Ventura County December 2 through March 3, 2013.

The Particle Garden is one of three exhibitions opening December 2 at the museum that focus on different artistic impressions of the Channel Islands. Island Treasures: Artworks from the Santa Cruz Island Foundation includes works by 19th and 20th century painters including Richard Diebenkorn, as well as today’s new generation of plein air painters. Tidepool Discoveries: Images form a Different Point of View shows what interests photographer Dan Harding, whose macro-portraitures capture tidepool life at the islands.

Burge’s interests have led to his career as fine arts sculptor and fine arts fabricator, video director and art director, animator and prototype creator. He has worked on projects which include Claymation for Xbox 360; “Metropolis II,” at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and films such as “Batman 2,” “Jurassic Park,” ”Edward Scissorhands,” “Predator 2,” and “Terminator 2.”

The Museum of Ventura County is located at 100 East Main Street in downtown Ventura. Hours are 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Admission to the exhibitions is $4 adults, $3 seniors, $1 children 6-17, members and children under 6 are free. Paid events include free admission to the galleries, and the first Sundays of every month are free general admission for the public. For more museum information go to www.venturamuseum.org or call 805-653-0323.

 

Year-end top-20 “best of” lists are common this time of year in everything from movies to books to electronic gadgets. The Buenaventura Art Association, being no exception, will look back at 2012 by showcasing the year’s solo artists in one group show titled “The Best of BAA 2012”, opening November 28 and running through December 17 at the Harbor Village Gallery in Ventura.

Running the gamut from revered veteran artists like Gerd Koch to fresh, new faces like Michele Baggenstoss, “The Best of BAA 2012” features the work of artists who were awarded solo exhibitions in both BAA’s Harbor Village Gallery and downtown Buenaventura Gallery during the past year. These artists, all members of the Buenaventura Art Association, competed for and were awarded these shows by jurors who judged their submitted work on its artistic merit.

The result was a year-long eclectic mix of artistic media – oils, watercolors, photographs, and ceramics – as well as an exciting series of exhibitions featuring both established professionals and soon-to-be-collected newcomers.

The Best of BAA group show will feature the work of Gerd Koch, Carole Milton, Rex Kochel, Gail Faulkner, Christine Leong, Robert Diehl, Susan Cook, Diana Caskey, Christine Beirne, Kathy McGuire, Roxie Ray, Gina Niebergall, Dorothy Hunter, Brent Hanson, Chris Weber, Michele Baggenstoss, Jacqueline Biaggi, and Fredda Leiter.

To view the works of this collection of fine artists, visit the Harbor Village Gallery at 1591 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura Harbor Village. Gallery hours are noon-5 p.m. daily except Tuesdays. For more information about the exhibit or the nonprofit Buenaventura Art Association, call 648-1235 or visit the website www.buenaventuragallery.org.

 
Museum Supporters Throw Las Vegas Holiday Party

Las Vegas visits Ventura on Saturday, December 8 when the Museum of Ventura County’s Next Generation presents Vegas In Ventura: A Holiday Party from 8:00 p.m. to midnight at the museum. Partygoers can dance to the music of Mini Elvis DJ Mighty Mike, visit the casino tables, mashed potato buffet and no-host bar, smile for the photo booth, and cash in their chips for an opportunity drawing for a three-day, two-night stay in Laughlin, Nevada. The event is presented by Next Generation, museum goers who enjoy parties, art, history and film, and who wish to encourage membership and participation in the Museum of Ventura County. Museum galleries are open that night until 9:00 p.m.

Tickets are $35 for the general public, $25 for museum members, and $50 at the door. There is a $25 savings for those who purchase an individual museum membership along with their Vegas In Ventura ticket. The package includes a year-long membership in Next Generation as well in the Museum of Ventura County in Ventura and its Agriculture Museum in Santa Paula. Event RSVPs must be made by December 5 and prepaid to (805) 653-0323 x 304, or on line at nextgenlasvegas.eventbrite.com.

The Museum of Ventura County is located at 100 East Main Street in downtown Ventura. Hours are 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Admission to the exhibitions is $4 adults, $3 seniors, $1 children 6-17, members and children under 6 are free. Paid events include free admission to the galleries, and the first Sundays of every month are free general admission for the public. For more museum information go to www.venturamuseum.org or call 805-653-0323.

 
All day holiday festivities to be held at Channel Islands Harbor

OXNARD, CA - Channel Islands Harbor kicks off the holidays with its 47th annual holiday Parade of Lights noon – 8 p.m., Dec. 8, with the parade beginning at 7 p.m. This year’s theme is “Holidays in Toyland.” Everyone is invited to enjoy a full day of holiday activities and watch festively decorated boats in the parade.

Kids can play in 36 tons of snow falling at the north end of Harborview Park, off Harbor Blvd. near Marine Emporium Landing, beginning at noon. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be there from noon – 4:30 p.m. There will also be holiday arts and crafts vendors starting at noon.

Santa and his reindeer will ride through the sky at 7 p.m. to mark the beginning of the parade. The parade starts in front of Peninsula Park and heads to the Main Channel, turns at Hobie Beach, loops in front of the launch ramp then heads back to Pacific Corinthian Yacht Club and repeats the route for a second run. The parade can be viewed from parks and walkways that line the route as well as from most Harbor restaurants. To view the parade from the water, contact A&M Charters at (805) 204-0977.

To participate in the parade, download an entry form from www.channelislandsharbor.org. Any size boat can register for the Parade of Lights.

Parade participants can take part in various decorating contests and compete for awards.

For more information on the Parade of Lights visit www.channelislandsharbor.org.

Channel Islands Harbor serves as a center of recreation, boating, shopping and water sports activities. The harbor is home to three yacht clubs and nine full-service marinas that provide berths for 2,150 boats. It also hosts the Ventura County Maritime Museum, located at 3900 Bluefin Circle, Oxnard, CA 93035, the museum is a cultural center dedicated to the interpretation of maritime history through interactive exhibits and educational outreach.

 

Ventura, CA - Community Memorial Hospital’s first-floor lobby and hallways will be decorated with an eclectic mix of art by local artists when the hospital holds its “Recycle: Eco Art” exhibit open to the public from Dec. 2 to Jan. 6.

A “Meet the Artists” reception is set for Tuesday, Dec. 4, from 5 to 7 p.m., in the hospital’s first-floor lobby. This event is open to the public.

This show is entitled “Recycle: Eco Art” and will be juried by Rhode Island artist, Tom Deininger. His artwork is in numerous public and private collections throughout the world and has won many awards in “recycled” and “found object” competitions. Deininger was named one of the top ten artists in the country working in recycled art by the Huffington Post. The show includes artworks utilizing at least 75% reused, recycled or found materials.

CMH provides a venue where patients, patient’s families and visitors all are soothed, inspired and grateful to view local art. The exhibit, a joint partnership between CMH, the Buenaventura Art Association and the Community Memorial Healthcare Foundation, is located on the first floor at Community Memorial Hospital, 147 N. Brent St. in Ventura. Any proceeds are used for future exhibits as well as to benefit local artists and the foundation’s philanthropic efforts.

Community Memorial Hospital is a member of Community Memorial Health System, a not-for-profit health system, which is comprised of Community Memorial Hospital, Ojai Valley Community Hospital, and eleven family-practice health centers entitled Centers for Family Health. The health system is located in Ventura County, California.
Caption: Self Portrait, Tom Deininger, artist to jury CMH art exhibit.

 

Camarillo, CA - The CSU Channel Islands Choir will present two holiday concerts in December. Both are open to the public and feature a selection of holiday music as well as a performance of Bach’s Cantata No. 140, Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme with members of the Channel Islands Chamber Orchestra.

The first concert is Monday, Dec. 3, at 8 p.m. in Malibu Hall on the CI campus. Reservations are requested at https://csuci.wufoo.com/forms/holiday-concert/. The concert is free, though donations are welcome. Limited parking is available on campus with the purchase of a $6 daily permit; follow signs to the parking permit dispensers.

The second concert will be held Saturday, Dec. 8, at 4 p.m. at St. Columba’s Episcopal Church, located at 1251 Las Posas Road in Camarillo. Parking is complimentary and reservations are not needed. A $20 donation is suggested.

The CSU Channel Islands Choir has a weekly evening class offered by the University’s Performing Arts Program that unites students, faculty and community members in the joy of singing. The class is led by Professor KuanFen Liu and sponsored by the Channel Islands Choral Association (CICA).

For the Dec. 3 concert, limited parking is available on campus with the purchase of a $6 daily permit; follow signs to the parking permit dispensers. Free parking is available at the Camarillo Metrolink Station/Lewis Road parking lot in Camarillo with bus service to and from the campus. Riders should board the CI Vista Bus to the campus; the cash-only fare is $1.25 each way. Buses arrive and depart from the Camarillo Metrolink Station every 30 minutes from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday. For exact times, check the schedule at www.goventura.org.

For more information, contact Dr. KuanFen Liu at 805-278-0375 or downbeatplus@gmail.com. Visit the choir’s website at http://choir.csuci.edu or CICA’s website at http://cicachoir.org.

About California State University Channel Islands
CSU Channel Islands (CI) is celebrating 10 years of education, innovation, growth and community enrichment during the 2012/2013 academic year. We salute our faculty, staff, students, alumni, supporters, and partners who continue the CI mission of a student-centered education emphasizing international and multicultural perspectives with interdisciplinary and experiential service-oriented learning.

Together, we are solving the problems of today, preparing the leaders and innovators of tomorrow, and contributing to the vitality of higher education.

CSU Channel Islands – A Decade of Distinction

 

California State Old Time Fiddlers District 8 will meet Sunday, November 25 from 1:30-4:30 pm at the Oak View Community Center, 18 Valley Road, Oak View. Join fiddlers for an afternoon of listening and dancing to Country Western and Bluegrass music. Bring an instrument and play along. Ron Sexton whose resume includes playing with Willie Nelson and Buck Page will host a workshop on Stage Presence from 12:15-1pm. No admission or parking charge. Refreshments available. For more information go to calfiddlers.com or call 797-6563.

 
Explore the Tragic Rise and Fall of Marie Antoinette

Marie Antoinette, one of European history’s most infamous queens, is the subject of the newest George Stuart Historical Figures® exhibition Let’em Eat Cake, opening at the Museum of Ventura County on November 20 and running through February 24, 2013.

The exhibit of one-quarter life-size sculpture of Antoinette and other personalities from the French Revolution sheds light on her extravagant life and tragic end by the guillotine.

Accompanying monologues by historian and artist George Stuart include Queen of France on Tuesday, January 15 at 2:00 p.m., and The Mob at the Gates! on Tuesday, February 12 at 2:00 pm. in the museum’s Martin V. and Martha K. Smith Pavilion. Admission to each monologue is $15 for the general public, $10 for museum members, and includes entry to all museum exhibits. For reservations, call (805) 653-0323 x 7.

The future queen of France began life as the Austrian princess Maria Antonia, who entered into an arranged marriage with the French Dauphin in 1770. She became Queen Marie Antoinette in 1774. Apparently a doting mother to her four children, Antoinette was initially known for her simplicity, but soon had a reputation for extravagance and excess which contributed to her unpopularity with the French public. The famous words “let’em eat cake” were probably falsely attributed to her, but Antoinette’s seeming indifference to the hardships endured by her subjects was not overlooked during her trial before a Revolutionary Tribunal. She was subsequently guillotined; of her family, only a daughter survived the revolution.

The Museum of Ventura County is located at 100 East Main Street in downtown Ventura. Hours are 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Admission to the exhibitions is $4 adults, $3 seniors, $1 children 6-17, members and children under 6 are free. . Paid events include free admission to galleries. The first Sundays of every month are free general admission for the public. For more museum information go to www.venturamuseum.org or call 805-653-0323.

 

Monday November 26, 2012 7 - 9 pm

California ceramic artist, Kim Clarke, will be talking about her 6 week residency in Vallauris, France. She was one of several international artists chosen to create a body of work and then participate in an exhibition. Clarke will share a power point presentation and information about her work, the residency, town and local clay bodies that are used by French artists. Clarke will also talk about side trips that included the island of Sainte-Marguerite.

Kim's work can be seen at galleries in Ojai, Santa Monica, Ventura and several out of state galleries.

She splits her time between homes in Ojai and Simi Valley.

There will be a display of her work available to see and purchase.

Everyone is invited.

Refreshments, FREE

For more information, call 805-985-5038.