Featured Image by Island Packers
by Visit Ventura
The world has (rightly) slowed, but it hasn’t stopped. With mask wearing (thank you) and social distancing (thank you) factored in, there’s still plenty to do in Ventura in August. Ventura has — deep breath — concerts and movies and live theater, scrumptious Facebook live food tastings and arrangements (Peirano’s Market meets Ventura Food Tours), thirst-slaking (and educational) Facebook live beverage samplings, Farmers Markets heavy with local largesse, the chance to see one of the largest sea caves in the world, and last — but certainly not least — the chance to see the largest creature on the planet.
All this fun, while still doing the right thing for all of us.
And heartfelt thank you for that.
Stick Your Head (and the rest of your body) into Painted Cave, one of the largest sea caves in the world
Date: Throughout August (but best to book quickly — they sell out)
Painted Cave, on Santa Cruz Island (part of Channel Islands National Park), is one of the largest sea caves in the world. Island Packers will give you an unforgettable look, nosing their 64-foot vessel into the cave, and allowing you to enter a cathedral world that breathes the past. Post gawp, passengers have about three hours to explore and swim (bring or rent snorkeling gear) at lovely Prisoners Harbor.
Summer Whale Watching (and the possible appearance of the largest creature on Earth)
Date: Anytime you want to come aboard Island Packers
No guarantees of a Blue Whale sighting, of course, but so worth the roll of the dice. For when anticipation collides with realization and the largest creature on this planet roils to the surface, the result is as stunning as a glimpse of Hollywood humility, and as subtle as already disappearing blowhole mists. And while Blue Whales are the biggest (sorry) lure, there’s no telling what you’ll see. From roughly June through mid-September, Blue Whales are also joined by Humpback Whales — and in any season, there’s the chance of Orca Whale sightings and the high likelihood of a variety of species of dolphins (on a single day in late July Island Packers saw over 5,000 Common Dolphins). What has Island Packers been seeing lately? Have a look here.
Date: Wednesdays and Saturdays
Local farmers bring the freshest fruits, vegetables,herbs, honey, eggs, nuts, cheese, olive oil, fruit juices, jams and jellies (among other items) you ever laid taste buds on. Oh, right. Also fresh baked bread and tasty ethnic foods, ready to go.The Midtown Ventura Farmers Market is held Wednesdays from 9 am to 1 pm at the Pacfic View Mall (3301 North Main Street, West parking lot, near Red Robin Restaurant). The Downtown Ventura Market — part of Ventura since 1986 (running without interruption) — is ope Saturdays from 8:30 am to noon at the corner of Santa Clara and Palm Streets.
Yes, they have modified their operations for your safety. Please click here.
Fisherman’s Market, Ventura Harbor Village
Date: Saturdays, 7:30 am to 11 am (weather dependent)
You won’t find fresher seafood because it comes right off the boat to the small pier behind Andria’s Seafood Restaurant & Market (1449 Spinnaker Drive). The official word is the Market runs from 7:30 am to 11 am, but the unofficial word is to get there early — because they often sell out. Inside tip; you can also order the catch online ahead of time. Learn about online ordering — and Ventura’s hardworking fisherfolk — here.
Ventura Food Tours/Peirano’s Market Virtual Food Tasting
Date: Monday, August 17 5-6pm
Imagine the most delectable charcuterie platter. Imagine not knowing how to arrange it. Allison Costa of Ventura Food Tours pairs with Jim Rice, proprietor of Peirano’s Market & Delicatessen in a Visit Ventura Facebook live to talk everything food. Cheese/charcuterie boxes are available for purchase at Peiranos both before and after the Facebook live.
Concerts in Your Car
Dates: Please see below
Sweeping lights, thundering drums, strutting singers, screaming guitars… yep, live music still lives when drive-in morphs with live concert; the experience enhanced by huge screens, booming sound systems, live aerial drone footage, and a sense of, well, wholly unconventional fun. The shows are brought to you by CBF Productions. Super Duper Kyle, Randy Houser, Fishbone, Ozomatli and Rey Fresco and Third Eye Blind have already played live beside the sea at the Ventura County Fairgrounds; with hundreds of fans enjoying the thrill from their cars.
For social distancing rules and more, please click here.
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Show Tunes by the Sea (and Jim Messina)
Dates: Please see below. All shows start at 8 pm.
Ventura’s treasured Rubicon Theatre Company has stepped up to become the first regional theatre company in the nation to offer safe-distance live music performances. Again at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, this is your chance to go retro with a 30th anniversary reunion of the Plaids (August 3rd, 4th and 5th), and, well kind of retro too, the beautiful music of Jim Messina and Friends (August 17th, 18th and 19th). That would be friends sitting in, and Jimmy has some talented friends. August 17th, Jimmy shares the stage with John McFee of the Doobie Brothers. August 18th, Jimmy pairs with Timothy B. Schmit of the Eagles. And August 19th, he plays with who else? Kenny Loggins.
Again, the joy and thrill of live music — with safety in mind. Feels good? Feel better still knowing that the proceeds from “Rubicon Goes Retro” benefit the Rubicon Theatre Company’s Artistic and Education programs.
Dates: August 6th, 13th, 20th, 27th 4pm (Yep, you guessed it — Thursdays)
With fun in mind, Visit Ventura has teamed up with Ventura’s amazing (and fun-loving) wineries, breweries, and distilleries to offer you “Thirsty Thursdays” on our Facebook channel. Unwise to mistake this strictly for a loutish drinking game. No, here you have a chance to address both your thirst and your education. And so a nice thing for businesses that, in these hard times, need our community support.
It works simply. Each Thursday, a Ventura winery or brewery steps up to the virtual counter to do a live virtual tasting; a few different wines, or a few different beers. On their end, they explain what you are tasting, and how they came up with the tastes you are tasting. On your end, you sip and murmur appreciation, and maybe even practice a little retention.
You’ll need to purchase the week’s homework beforehand (please click here for more information). Then perhaps, you might display it prominently somewhere in the home (because anticipation is part of the tasting process).
Coming in August (and we encourage you to stay on into September)…
August 6th Ventura Coast Brewing Company
August 13th Poseidon Brewing Company
August 20th Leashless Brewing
August 27th Transmission Brewing
September 3rd Rincon Brewery