Short List

A selective preview of local happenings.

The Vernacular Bestiary
Through June 15 | Museum of Ventura County’s Agriculture Museum

This collection of anonymous amateur images has been collected by photographer and gallerist John Nichols. It has never been publicly exhibited. The abecedarian display of creatures is comprised of 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. On March 13 at 2 p.m., Nichols will give a Gallery Talk titled, “What’s Special About Vernacular Photography?” The opening reception will be held March 22 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. 926 Railroad Ave., Santa Paula. For more information, visit

Ojai Raptor Center Open House
March 30 | Ojai Raptor Center

Doors will open to the public for a rare opportunity to meet all 18 of the Ojai Raptor Center’s non-releasable “ambassador” raptors. Hawks, falcons, eagles, and owls will greet guests during presentations on the ORC stage. Chumash elder Julie Tumamait-Stenslie will share native stories about local wildlife. This will be a free event with a suggested donation of five dollars. Handicapped parking will be available; overflow parking will be located one street down from the Center, and Pegasus shuttles will run every 10 minutes. Noon to 4 p.m. 370 Baldwin Rd., Ojai.

The Dinner Detective
Through March 26 | Ventura

The Dinner Detective is America’s largest murder mystery comedy dinner show. Guests will solve a hilarious murder case while enjoying a four-course plated dinner. A prize package awaits the top sleuth of the evening. In this show, everyone is a suspect, even you, and the killer might be at your table. Admission starts at $59.95. Recurring weekly on Saturdays. 6:15 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. 550 Sanjon Rd., Ventura. For more information, visit

Eat, Drink, and be Local
March 22 | Museum of Ventura County

Locally sourced food will star during the National Charity League Juniors of Ventura County’s Farm-to-Gala gala. Nothing will go to waste during this year’s event, which will raise funds for the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Program at the Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases at Ventura County Medical Center, in partnership with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Medical Group. 6 p.m. to midnight. Cocktail attire; black tie optional. Tickets $175. For more information, visit

A Moon for the Misbegotten
March 12 to April 6 | Rubicon Theatre, Ventura

In this poetic play, two lost souls catch a glimpse of happiness in the moonlight. But is the newly lit fire within them strong enough to withstand a lifetime of disappointment and regret? And will it still be flickering at the break of dawn? Set in and around a dilapidated Connecticut farmhouse in 1923, this great American classic follows Josie Hogan, a boisterous Irish woman with a quick tongue, a tarnished reputation, and a tender heart; and Jim Tyrone, a tortured soul haunted by the loss of his mother. One of America’s master storytellers at the height of his powers, Pulitzer Prize-winner and Nobel laureate Eugene O’Neill creates a mythic tale of old sins and the redemptive power of love. 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. For more information, visit

Come Travel with Us 2014
March 15 | Spanish Hills Country Club, Camarillo

Assistance League of Ventura County, Nancy R. Brandt Auxiliary announces its 2014 fundraiser, Come Travel with Us on California Escapes. Proceeds will benefit the programs of the Nancy R. Brandt Auxiliary and Assistance League of Ventura County. The event includes a gourmet luncheon, live and silent auctions, postcard grab bags, and music by Bryce Chanes. The guide for California Escapes will be Dave Loe, the Ventura County STAR’s travel columnist and longtime travel business owner. Mr. Loe will speak on amusing and unusual trips to classic Golden State destinations that can be reached by train or car. Tickets $60 ($25 is tax deductible). 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 999 Crestview Ave., Camarillo. For more information, call 805.642.2321.

Shen Yun 2014 World Tour
March 18–20 | Fred Kavli Theatre, Thousand Oaks

Through the universal language of music and dance, Shen Yun will take the audience on a journey through 5,000 years of Chinese culture. The performance will feature 100 world-class performers, over 400 sets of handmade costumes, a unique orchestra blending East and West, and dazzling animated backdrops. Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today, where traditional culture has been nearly lost. Yet the nonprofit Shen Yun has become an international phenomenon, bringing the wonders of 5,000 years of civilization to millions across the globe. Tickets available from Ticketmaster at 800.745.3000, online at, or through the T.O. Civic Arts Plaza Box Office, located at 2100 Thousand Oaks Blvd. For more information, call 805.449.2787 or visit

The April Verch Band
March 27 | Ojai Valley Woman’s Club

April Verch has never sounded more comfortable in her skin than she does now, in the second decade of her career as an internationally touring Canadian fiddler, step dancer, and singer-songwriter. Her ninth album, Bright Like Gold, captures a woman who’s fleshed out her identity and is in full command of her gifts, a woman who’s grown from a prodigy into an enduring artist with grace and grit to spare. Since infancy, she was immersed in folk music and dance from her native Ottawa Valley, a melting pot of Franco-Celtic flavors brought by the loggers who settled the area. $20 in advance, $25 at the door; kids under 15 half price (young lap-sitters free). 7 p.m. 441 E. Ojai Ave., Ojai. For more information, visit

Soul Street Dance in “Breakin’ Backwards”
March 29 | Matilija Junior High School, Ojai

Four street dancers will perform their special contemporary mix of choreography to the most popular music of the decades. Eclectic musical selections will include Count Basie, Elvis Presley, The Temptations, Aerosmith, Michael Jackson, and more. Soul Street Dance appeals to all ages, ethnicities, cultures. $20 adults ($25 at the door), $18 seniors (65+) / students ($23 at the door), $10 children under 15 ($15 at the door). 7.30 p.m. Matilija Auditorium, 703 El Paseo Rd., Ojai. For more information, visit

Meadowlark Service League Luncheon and Tennis Tournament
March 31 | Camarillo

This British themed event, “A Royal Affair,” will include a women’s double round-robin tennis tournament and charity luncheon. Tournament play will start at 8:30 a.m. on courts provided by Las Posas Country Club, Spanish Hills Country Club, and private courts. Participants can sign up with a partner to win the Championships Meadowlark. Those who don’t play tennis can attend the luncheon held at Las Posas Country Club featuring a fashion show, boutique shopping, live and silent auctions, and opportunity drawings. Boutique shopping begins at 10 a.m. The cost for tennis and lunch is $80; lunch only is $60. For more information, visit or call 805.630.7257.


Paint Ventura
April 2–5 | Ventura

Red Brick Gallery will host the 7th Paint Ventura, a plein air festival. Paint Ventura includes four days of plein air painting, with wet paint sales each day at Red Brick Gallery and daily demonstrations. More than 100 fine artists and crafts persons display and sell their original work amid a street festival atmosphere throughout Ventura’s downtown streets. The festival will culminate on April 5 with Paint Ventura’s Art Fair, Live Music, a Quickdraw competition, and sale followed by an awards presentation. For more information, visit

Ojai Word Fest
April 10–14 | Ojai

A festival of words, ideas, and stories will unfold in one of California’s most beautiful settings. The literary nexus encourages readers and writers of all genres, skill levels, and ages to partake in events in and around the Ojai Valley. Featured events will include the Spa-tacular Writing Workshop (April 10 and 14), a daylong “write in your robe” retreat that will include full access to world-class spas, fine dining, and writing instruction. The fee for Spa-tacular Writing is $249/day; space limited to 10 writers. Other events include memoir writing, screenwriting, writing blogs and essays, poetry nights, and more. For more information, visit


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