Emma Wood campground hibernating for winter season
Attention, campers: The “Closed” sign at one entrance of Emma Wood State Park is no mistake.
Parks officials in Sacramento are hoping that the temporary closure of a portion of the park’s campgrounds in Ventura will save them up to $6,000 in operational costs, as dictated by state budget constraints.
The Emma Wood Ventura River Group Camp will be shut down until March 31, said Jerry Weil, the Ventura Sector superintendent for the state parks department’s Channel Coast District.
“Mainly because of our budget situation, we’re trying to make cuts wherever we can, which is really difficult,” Weil said this week. “Even before the budget cuts, we were operating on a pretty slim budget.”
Weil said the campsite, one of five at Emma Wood, was approved for closure during a period viewed as mostly off-season, when fewer people utilize the grounds during the winter.
“The decision was made at the Sacramento level that we were going to keep all the parks open,” explained Weil, “but make seasonal closures or hour reductions to make up the deficit.”
McGrath State Beach in Oxnard also remains closed, albeit temporarily. According to Weil, as a precaution the beachfront was closed in anticipation of flooding and should reopen by the beginning of the new year next month.
Other state-run parks and beaches in Ventura County south of Mugu Beach, which include Thornhill Broome, Sycamore Cove and Sycamore Canyon campground, have avoided reductions in hours or outright closures because their funding is subsidized by help from the National Parks Service — $900,000.
Those properties receive the parks service aid because they fall within the state park Malibu Sector of Ventura County, where the Santa Monica Mountains, a parks service-run recreation area, is located, says Alphonse Pepito, another state parks superintendent.
Pepito said it is likely any one of the other Ventura County parks or beaches would have endured cuts had that funding been unavailable.
“With the reduction we would have had, we would have lost approximately seven positions for just this sector,” he said.
Camarillo hit with holiday vehicle vandalisms
Notwithstanding Santa Claus’ once-a-year trek to Camarillo last week, police have responded to at least 17 visits from vehicle vandals in the city this month — 11 on Christmas alone.
In each incident, according to a press release from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, which polices Camarillo, vehicle windows were shot out with BB guns during late night and early morning hours.
Six incidents, on Aqua Verde Court, Ridgeview Street, Fieldcrest Drive, Buenos Tiempos Drive and Mesquite Street occurred overnight on Dec. 19, police said.
The remaining 11 took place overnight on Dec. 25 on Los Pueblos, Ladera Vista, Creekside and Rancho Calleguas drives, and Paseo Montelena.
No suspects have been caught and police are seeking any information that may help in solving the vandalisms, which may be provided by calling the Camarillo detectives division at 388-5100. Ventura County Crime Stoppers, which pays up to a $1,000 reward for information, also welcomes tips at its hotline, (800) 222-TIPS.
— Paul Sisolak
University hosting Senior Fest
Cal Lutheran University’s Senior Fest 2010, a day of fitness, theology and other workshops for older adults, will be held Jan. 14, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m., at the school’s Samuelson Chapel in Thousand Oaks.
The “Passing on the Faith” event will feature several workshops led by CLU faculty and staff. It will also include devotions, lunch and a presentation by the Association of Lutheran Older Adults, an inter-Lutheran movement based in Baltimore. The keynote address for the program, noted in a CLU announcement, will be delivered by the Rev. Roland Martinson, an author and professor at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn.
Registration for Senior Fest is $25 per person prior to Jan. 5 and $30 afterward. To register, go to callutheran.edu/seniorfest.com For more information, contact Linda LeBlanc at either 493-3936 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
— Paul Sisolak
Camarillo students donate more than three tons of food
In an effort to tackle hunger, students from nine Camarillo schools, eight of them in the Pleasant Valley School District, donated 6,600 pounds of food to FOOD Share, the county’s biggest regional food bank.
The district’s yearly Stuff-a-Bus holiday food drive brings together students, staff and faculty to collect food for Food Share and the 55,000 people it serves each month.
“We very much appreciate the Pleasant Valley School District’s ongoing support of Food Share,” said Bonnie Weigel, CEO and president of FOOD Share, in a press release. “In this difficult economy, we see more families struggling to put food on their tables and know that every donation helps to alleviate hunger for those in need.”
Participating schools, and their donations, included:
Pleasant Valley School District Office, 181 lbs;
El Descanso Elementary, 970 lbs;
La Mariposa Elementary, 552 lbs;
Las Posas Elementary, 298 lbs;
Las Colinas Middle School, 853 lbs;
Monte Vista Middle School, 1,351 lbs;
Santa Rosa Technology, 565 lbs; and
Tierra Linda Elementary, 1,840 lbs.
For more information on how to donate or volunteer, call 983-7100 or go to www.foodshare.com.
— Michael Sullivan
Inaugural Boys & Girls Club art show at E.P. Foster
Artwork by members of the five Ventura, Saticoy and Oak View clubs will be on display at the first annual Boys & Girls Club art show on Thursday, Jan. 7, at 6 p.m., at Ventura’s E.P. Foster Library. Refreshments will be served by members of the teen leadership group Keystone Club. Sandra Laby, Gwenlyn Norton, John Brant, Sharon Fleur and Jack Halbert will judge the entries Wednesday, Jan. 6, at 6 p.m.
The following art mediums will be included in the judging: monochromatic drawing, multicolored drawing, pastel, watercolor, oil or acrylic, printmaking, mixed media, collage and sculpture. The winner from each category will advance to the regional competition and be entered into the next phase of the Boys & Girls Club of America’s National Fine Arts Exhibit competition.
The goal of the arts program, one of the five diversified core programs offered by the Boys & Girls Club of Ventura, is to enable young people (ages 6 to 18) to develop their creativity and cultural awareness through knowledge and appreciation of the visual, tactile and/or performing arts, according to a press release.
The other four age-appropriate club programs are focused on: character and leadership development; education and career development; health and live skills; and sports, fitness and recreation. The club has a no-discrimination policy on the basis of race, religion, gender, culture, national origin, sexual orientation or financial considerations.
For additional information, to schedule a tour or volunteer, go to www.bgclubventura.org or call 641-5585.
— Michael Sullivan