Posted: Thursday, Oct 7th, 2021

By Visit Ventura

Five Fun Things To Do In Ventura This Weekend (and sooner)

Why just five fun things in Ventura, a town that swims in fun? It’s called a teaser. And really, it’s more fun to keep coming back for more. And we’ll offer you more.

Later.

On a serious note, when you opt to do any — or all — of these things, you are, in one way or another, kindly Supporting Ventura Local, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

So here’s a taste of Ventura fun for this weekend (actually, starting Thursday with Pennywise and the Dead Kennedys at the Majestic Ventura Theater).

Drive here and stay, so you can get it all in; from cool, wide-open beaches, to cold craft beer, to a walkable small-town downtown with unique shops and restaurants, most of them locally owned.

For life is short, and there can never be enough fun.

Channel Islands Native Garden Plant Sale

Date: Saturday, October 9th

Once or twice a year the Master Gardeners of Ventura County offer up this gem; the chance to buy a wide variety of native California plants, including species from the Channel Islands. The plant sale will be held in front of the Channel Islands National Park Visitor Center (1901 Spinnaker Drive) at Ventura Harbor (the Visitor Center is at the end of Spinnaker Drive). The sale runs from 9 am to 1 pm. Get there early. Things go fast.

Surf ‘N Suds Beer Festival

Date: Saturday, October 9th

Surf ‘N Suds is rated one of the country’s best beer festivals, and it’s coming to Ventura’s San Buenaventura State Beach on Saturday, October 9th (11:30 am to 4:30 pm). Plain and simple, it’s the biggest craft beer festival on the Central Coast and the only craft beer festival in Ventura — which in two craft beer epicenters, well, that’s saying something. The Festival will feature over 65 craft breweries — and seltzers, kombucha, ciders, micheladas, and wine. Perhaps consider an early admission (11:30 am) ticket, and sampling some beverages that won’t be available after 12:30 when everyone else comes in.

Need another nudge and a few reasons why this might be one of the best times you haven’t yet had? Read on.

Sublime with Rome, the Dirty Heads, Hirie, Rey Fresco, and the Free Love Project

Date: Saturday, October 9th

Surfer’s Point LIVE brings live music to the Ventura County Fairgrounds yet again. This time it’s the High and Mighty Tour — Sublime with Rome, the Dirty Heads, Hirie, and local favorites Rey Fresco and the Free Love Project. Fans of Sublime — and there are thousands of them — know the band has a long and storied history, from backyard (and everywhere) Long Beach parties to international acclaim, their music fusing reggae, punk and ska energy, hip-hop swagger, and, beneath it all, a large dose of sage-wise introspection. That’s five bands and a full day (2 pm to 10 pm) of electricity; the wild joy of live music pounding into the salt-laced sea air.

But until the first chords ring in your chest those are just words.

Ventura County Fear Grounds

Date(s): October 1-3 / October 7-10 / October 14-17 / October 21-31. Hours: Thursdays 6 pm-10 pm / Fridays 6 pm-11 pm/ Saturdays 6 pm-11 pm / Sundays 6 pm-10 pm

These days, Halloween is no longer for the squeamish or the faint-hearted. Some seriously hair-raising stuff. The aptly named Fear Grounds at the Ventura County Fairgrounds beside the sea offers, well, not your County Fair fare. Accommodating for current times, there are three open-air haunts, but they aren’t without risk. The Fright Train, The Terror Trail, and The Cage are as good/bad as they sound. CBF Productions — who hosted Concerts in Your Car throughout the pandemic — knows much of sounds systems, technology, and startling light. These — and a twisted imagination — are now applied to Halloween fright. The motto for The Cage is simple. “Your job: survive. Their job: to stop you.” The Terror Trail and The Cage are walk-throughs. The Fright Train is a ride.

Either way, keep your defibrillator handy.

Music. Everywhere.

Yes, summer is officially over but live music sure isn’t. Why not start on Thursday at Winchester’s Grill & Saloon (632 East Main Street) with the one-man band that’s Preston Smith (5:30 pm)? Friday, the James Broz band plays classic rock (7 pm), and Sunday The Tossers bring a British Rock invasion to town (3 pm). Ventura features convenience. Stroll a block or two down Ventura’s car-free downtown and enjoy more live music at Grapes & Hops. Thursday, Pennywise and the Dead Kennedys blow the roof off the Majestic Ventura Theater. Friday, Pennywise and Strung Out raise what’s left. Ventura Harbor Village also has live music — and there’s plenty more. There’s no more extensive listing of local music offerings than the amazing Ventura Rocks.

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