Vol. 11, No. 20 – July 4 – July 17, 2018 – Person to Person

by Jennifer Tipton

What’s your fondest 4th of July memory in Ventura?

Karson Fish
age 18
works at The Wharf
“Probably when I was little, going to the college and watching fireworks with my family. We picnicked and barbequed, and I especially liked the barbequed burgers because burgers always taste better on the 4th of July!”

Victoria Beelik
age 50
presents seminars for large animal evacuation planning and author
“My fondest memory is sitting on Hollywood Beach, in front of the Rudder Room watching the Quad Police (police that ride quad motorcycles on the beach) busting people that had “over celebrated”. We did that for years, it was hysterical!”

Savannah Benton
age 23
works at Iron and Resin
“Just being on the beach with my friends and my dog Buddy, surfing and hanging out.”
I asked, “Do you do any fireworks?”
“Aren’t fireworks illegal?”, she whispered. “Well, we do, but don’t say we do…it’s pretty simple to get them in Fillmore. I like the ones that look like weeping willows, or sparklers – I love sparklers! Wait! Roman Candles – those are my favorite!”

Louise Bailey
age 80
worked as a waitress at Vagabond
“Going to my son, Kenny’s when he lived on a ranch off Casitas Vista Road and we’d set off fireworks there. And of course, all those years going to the Pier to see the fireworks. It’s a shame they’re taking away fireworks but it’s not the fireworks that are the problem, it’s the people that are not responsible. But it’s ok cause I’ve got faith, the future generation’s gonna get it right!”

Dan Weidler
age 68
retired Navy / works at the base in Port Hueneme
“We moved here in 1978 and we like going to the fireworks at Ventura College. My wife, Debbie likes to go to the street fair too, but I usually have to work in the morning even on the 4th.”

John Christie
age 65 (but looks 50)
retired Sheriff / works as a Park Officer at Lake Casitas
“In the late 70’s, I took my girlfriend and several of my friends with their girlfriends in my dad’s boat and anchored about 500 yards off the end of the Pier, we could see all of Ventura and the fireworks from there, to see it all – that was my favorite! Now, I get to drive a patrol truck around Lake Casitas and many of the campers barbequing offer me food, they’ll ask, “hey John – want a burger? or hey John – wanna try these ribs?” I love my job!”

Writer’s note: living in Ventura for over 50 years, and I have many fond memories of July 4ths past … in my teens when I didn’t let go of a cherry bomb soon enough and my ears rang for days! In my mid-twenties when the City did the firework show off the Pier and we’d all pack up the kids and go to the beach. But it wasn’t enough for some folks to just watch, they began to bring their own arsenal and Pierpont beach became Armageddon. My fondest memories are in my forties with the block parties we used to have, neighbors came together, we pulled the Webers to the street, everyone brought side dishes and the kids would decorate their bikes and wagons and have a parade. At dusk, although we could see the fireworks from the college, we had our own, smaller show (thanks to Fillmore). Those kids are all grown now, some have kids of their own and I hope they are creating memories. For me now, it’s all about that street fair!

Happy 4th of July Venturans and stay safe out there!

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