Short List: March 2024

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NOWRUZ March 23 | Ventura

MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET

March 15-24 | Thousand Oaks

The Tony® Award-nominated musical “Million Dollar Quartet” offers an extraordinary twist of fate when Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley come together at Sun Records in Memphis for what would be one of the greatest jam sessions ever. “Million Dollar Quartet” brings that legendary December night to life with an irresistible tale of broken promises, secrets, betrayal and celebrations that is both poignant and funny. Relive the era with the smash-hit sensation featuring an incredible score of rock’ n’ roll, gospel, R&B and country hits, performed live onstage by world-class actors and musicians. Fred Kavli Theatre, Bank of America Performing Arts Center, 2100 East Thousand Oaks Boulevard, Thousand Oaks, 805.449.2787, bapacthousandoaks.com.

COUNTY VENTURA ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARADE

March 16 | Ventura

County Ventura St. Patrick’s Day Parade is brought to you by the Ventura Elks Lodge #1430. Since 1984, the parade has been a showcase of Ventura County’s finest. It features amazing costumes, dancers, horses, high school bands and more. The parade route is on Main Street in Downtown Ventura, starting at Lincoln Drive and continuing to Fir Street. This year’s theme, “Shamrocks & Shenanigans,” gives parade participants an invitation to embrace their inner leprechaun with whimsy and mischief. The 2024 Grand Marshal is Elena Brokaw, Executive Director of the Museum of Ventura County. More information at www.venturastpatricksdayparade.com.

A CONVERSATION WITH PERLA BATALLA

March 17 | Ventura

The next edition of Focus on the Masters’ popular Artist Spotlight Series will feature singer/songwriter Perla Batalla. Batalla was reared in Los Angeles by a family immersed in music; her father, a Mexican singer and DJ, her uncle in the renowned Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán and an Argentine mother who ran a bustling Venice record store called Discoteca Batalla. At 15, Perla left home to begin a music career. She studied opera; performed jazz, country, soul, swing and rock…but it wasn’t until she began working with the legendary Leonard Cohen that Perla’s career began in earnest. She has performed and recorded with artists such as Lou Reed, Sonny Rollins, k.d. lang, Rufus Wainright, Jackson Browne, Laurie Anderson and countless others. $20 general admission; $15 for seniors; free for FOTM members. Sunday, March 17, 3-4:30 p.m. Namba Performing Arts Space, 27 South Oak Street, Ventura, 805.653.2501, focusonthemasters.com/spotlight-series-2/.

“LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE” 50TH ANNIVERSARY CAST REUNION AND FESTIVAL
March 22-24 | Simi Valley

“LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE” 50TH ANNIVERSARY CAST REUNION AND FESTIVAL

March 22-24 | Simi Valley

This once-in-a-lifetime event promises to be the largest gathering of cast members from the beloved show. Fans will have the opportunity to meet their favorite “Little House” cast members, including Melissa Gilbert, Karen Grassle, Alison Arngrim and Dean Butler, delve deeper into the behind-the-scenes world of Walnut Grove through engaging Q&A panel discussions, and relive memorable moments with episode screenings. Three iconic interiors and a treasure trove of memorabilia from the series will be on display. Live music will set the tone for this nostalgic journey, creating an immersive experience for all attendees. The festival will have a wide variety of period-correct lessons and demonstrations, such as butter churning, leather working and more, offering a step back in time to the days of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Tickets start at $15 for kids, $45 for adults. Rancho Santa Susana Community Park, 5005 East Los Angeles Avenue, Simi Valley, littlehousefestival.com.

NOWRUZ
March 23 | Ventura

NOWRUZ

March 23 | Ventura

Nowruz is the Persian New Year, which occurs at the spring equinox and commemorates the beginning of the new season in the Northern Hemisphere. The Museum of Ventura County will offer a special Nowruz celebration on March 23 with festive food, traditional dance, live music, Farsi calligraphy and more. Safir Catering offers delectable Persian cuisine for purchase, Sahlala Dancers will enchant you with traditional Persian dance, Illunis will serenade you with covers of Persian pop music and a Fire Jumping Ritual will add a touch of excitement. Join the museum for a day of cultural splendor, delicious cuisine and lively entertainment! Free. Saturday, March 23, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Museum of Ventura County, 100 East Main Street, Ventura, 805.653.0323, venturamuseum.org/event/nowruz/.

RESCUECON
March 23 | Oxnard

RESCUECON

March 23 | Oxnard

Get ready for an unforgettable experience at RescueCon, a jam-packed one-day event dedicated to celebrating the bond between humans and animals! Mark your calendars for a day filled with heartwarming pet adoptions, enlightening workshops, captivating performances, and so much more. At RescueCon, you’ll have the opportunity to connect with nonprofit exhibitors who are making a difference in the lives of animals every day. Learn about their missions, volunteer opportunities, and how you can contribute to their efforts. Dive into the vibrant world of art and vendors, where you’ll discover unique treasures and creations inspired by our furry friends. Special guest “Kitten Lady” Hannah Shaw (@kittenxlady), animal advocate and educator, will host exclusive workshops and Q&A sessions. Don’t miss your chance to be a part of this incredible event and join us in celebrating the joy of rescue! Free. Saturday, March 23, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Community Center Park East, Oxnard Performing Arts Center, 800 Hobson Way, Oxnard, www.theopac.org/rescuecon.

SPRING WINE WALK
March 23 | Ventura

SPRING WINE WALK

March 23 | Ventura

One of the region’s most popular wine events is back, just in time for visitors to take advantage of the beautiful spring weather! More than 60 locations will be pouring out libations, while the street fair will feature over 100 local artisans. The Wine Walk will showcase wine, sparkling wine and craft beer sampling in your favorite downtown businesses. Plus, the Vendor Fair will feature hundreds of local vendors and crafters lining the streets of downtown with goods available for sale. Small bites will be available at select tasting locations. A gourmet brunch buffet will be available in the VIP area. Come celebrate spring with a sip of your favorite beverage, the company of good friends and the fun and festivity that is the Spring Wine Walk! Street fair and live entertainment are free and open to the public. $55 general admission; $99.99 VIP Bunny Lounge; $20 for parking at Ventura County Fairgrounds. For more information, visit www.springwinewalk.com.

THE GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER

March 29-April 21 | Thousand Oaks

When the low-born Monty Navarro finds out that he’s eighth in line for an earldom in the lofty D’Ysquith family, he figures his chances of outliving his predecessors are slight and sets off down a far more ghoulish path. Can he knock off his unsuspecting relatives without being caught and become the ninth Earl of Highhurst? And what of love? Because murder isn’t the only thing on Monty’s mind…. $20-$22. Conejo Players Theatre, 351 South Moorpark Road, Thousand Oaks, 805.496.3715, conejoplayers.org.

FEMALE MAKER MARKET AND SPRINGTIME SOIREE

March 30 | Ventura

Shop the Curated Marketplace by the Female Maker Market on the Ventura Harbor Village Lawn on Saturday, March 30, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. We welcome the Female Maker Market and their variety of woman-owned small business shops including curated clothing, local jewelry, children’s wear, home decor, hand poured candles, permanent jewelry and so much more! Come down with your family for an Easter Egg hunt from 10-11 a.m. on the lawn. Come down and enjoy the Easter Bunny, live entertainment and shop local for your last-minute Easter basket gifts! For more information, please visit the Female Maker Market website at www.thefemalemakermarket.com or their social media feed, @thefemalemakermarket. Ventura Harbor Village, 1583 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura, www.venturaharborvillage.com.

SUNFLOWER GIRL PAINTING WORKSHOP

March 30 |Ojai

Unlock your inner artist! Indulge yourself in an afternoon of self-expression. No experience necessary. Learn a variety of abstract painting techniques. You will use both brushes and palette knives. Paint along with Amy Lynn Stevenson, step by step, adding vibrant and dynamic layers of acrylic paint on canvas. You will be provided with everything you need, not only a palette full of paint and materials, but assistance and encouragement. Each participant will have the opportunity to add their unique personal touches, and then take home their own expressive art work on a 16×20 gallery wrap canvas at the end of the workshop. $75; includes all materials and canvas. Limited to 18 participants. Reserve your space today! Saturday, March 30, 1-4:30 p.m. Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts, 8585 Ojai-Santa Paula Road, Ojai, 805.646.3381, www.beatricewood.com/workshops/sunflower_girl_workshop.html.

MERMAID MONTH
Through March 31 | Ventura

MERMAID MONTH

Through March 31 | Ventura

Ventura Harbor Village is now hosting its Ninth Annual “March Is Mermaid Month,” a month-long shell-abration of mermaids (and mermen) by the sea! Select restaurants will have special mermaid eats and treats, select stores will have special mermaid MERchandise, and there will be a free mermaid scavenger hunt daily, redeemable for prizes at our Mermaid Month headquarters – the Mermaid Gallery. Our main special events feature ocean-inspired activities and live mermaid meet and greets happening on select weekends in March. You can expect interactive booths, mermaid craft stations for kids, chalk art, mermaid dance parties and more. Various vendors will showcase their skills, offering services like face painting, glitter tattoos, and hair braiding on designated dates. Please stay tuned for the o-FISH-al schedule and more deTAILS for 2024 Mermaid events, coming soon! Ventura Harbor Village, 1583 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura, www.venturaharborvillage.com.

SHEN YUN

April 2-3 | Thousand Oaks

Shen Yun takes you on an extraordinary journey through China’s 5,000 years of divinely inspired culture. Exquisite beauty from the heavens, profound wisdom from dynasties past, timeless legends and ethnic traditions all spring to life through classical Chinese dance, enchanting live orchestral music, authentic costumes, and patented interactive backdrops. Revisit a time when scholars and artists sought harmony with the Tao, or the “Way” of the universe, and when divine beings walked upon the earth to inspire humanity. Join us for a night filled with beauty and wisdom, courage and hope… it’s the experience of a lifetime! See Shen Yun — live on stage. Performances on Tuesday, April 2, at 7 p.m. and Wednesday, April 3, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. $80-180. Fred Kavli Theatre, Bank of America Performing Arts Center, 2100 East Thousand Oaks Boulevard, Thousand Oaks, 805.449.2787, bapacthousandoaks.com.

NICO HEYNING: WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY OF THE CALIFORNIA COAST

Through May 6 | Oxnard

Explore the California Coast through the lens of wildlife photographer Nico Heyning. Channel Islands Maritime Museum in beautiful Channel Islands Harbor will feature a special exhibit of the birds, marine mammals and other creatures that call the Golden State’s seashore and ocean environments home. Channel Islands Maritime Museum, 3900 Bluefin Circle, Oxnard, 805.984.6260, www.cimmvc.org.

30 FOR 30

Through May 5 | Santa Paula

“30 Under 30” is a group exhibition showcasing art by 30 California artists between the ages of 18 and 29. Emanating from Berkeley to San Diego, all of the featured artists are current college students or recent graduates just starting their careers as painters, illustrators, photographers, filmmakers, ceramicists and more. Radically diverse in subject, style and media, these 30 works of art reflect a playful curiosity and refreshing experimentality not unexpected of a young group of artists. What is remarkable: their wisdom and boldness in embracing art as a means of examining the world — deconstructing histories, structures and norms — to better understand and express themselves, and inspire others to do the same. Santa Paula Art Museum, 117 North 10th Street, Santa Paula, 805.525.5554, www.santapaulaartmuseum.org.

WINTER WHALE WATCHING

Through April 15 | Oxnard and Ventura

Hop on board for an Island Packer’s Winter Whale Watch excursion, with trips departing from Ventura Harbor. These waters off the coast of Ventura and Channel Islands Harbor are known for their marine mammal diversity, and you may get to see other species of marine mammals along with the migrating gray whales. Seals, sea lions and several species of dolphins along with occasional orca whale pods may also be seen on your trip. Fun for all ages! Island Packers, 1691 Spinnaker Drive, #105B, Ventura, 805.642.1393, islandpackers.com.

ON THE HORIZON

PLEIN AIR INVITATIONAL AT VENTURA BOTANICAL GARDENS
April 6-7 | Ventura
“Botanical Garden” by Ron Zolkover

PLEIN AIR INVITATIONAL AT VENTURA BOTANICAL GARDENS

April 6-7 | Ventura

“Cross Pollination” is the first annual Plein Air Invitational paint out hosted by the Ventura Botanical Gardens (VBG). Over the weekend of April 6-7, 13 gifted regional artists will create original artworks depicting the flora, fauna, landforms and panoramic vistas of the gardens. From the French, “en plein air” means in the open air. Plein Air painters draw their inspiration by depicting their subject matter in real time, allowing them to better capture the changing details of weather and light on the surrounding landscape. An artist meet and greet will take place Saturday, April 6, 9-10:30 a.m. at the Merewether Visitor Center. Garden visitors can meet the artists or hike the trails later to watch the artists at work. This event is free for members and $7 for nonmembers. The Ventura Botanical Gardens is located at 567 Poli Street in Ventura. For more information, visit www.VenturaBotanicalGardens.com.

SELECTIONS FROM HANDEL’S MESSIAH

April 6-7 | Camarillo, Thousand Oaks

One of mankind’s most profound and enduring musical commentaries on Jesus Christ’s Nativity, Passion, Resurrection and Ascension, including the joyous “Hallelujah Chorus.” Audience sing-along of select choruses at the conclusion of the performance. Conducted by Michael Christie. Performances on Saturday, April 6, at 7 p.m. at the Bank of America Performing Arts Center, 2100 East Thousand Oaks Boulevard, Thousand Oaks; and on Sunday, April 7, at 3 p.m. at the Rancho Campana Performing Arts Center, 4235 Mar Vista Drive, Camarillo. $30-$120. newwestsymphony.org.