Ventura Land Trust launches 20th Anniversary Year with community birthday party

Harmon Canyon Preserve by Jason Fakour.

Ventura Land Trust (VLT) will celebrate 20 years of land conservation in 2023, starting with a free community birthday party on Friday, February 24 at Topa Topa Brewing Company (4880 Colt Street, Ventura, 93003) from 6-9 pm.

The birthday party will include the reveal of the winners of VLT’s inaugural Art Contest, a look back at milestones through the organization’s history, a sneak peek of gear that will be on sale at the April 8th Gear Garage Sale, family games, and of course, birthday cake.

Ventura Land Trust was founded in 2003 as Ventura Hillsides Conservancy by community members who sought to protect the iconic hillsides to the north of Ventura from development.

The Conservancy hosted top musical talent at annual concerts in Arroyo Verde Park, raising funds to permanently protect local open spaces. The first conserved parcels of land were in the Ventura River corridor. Community volunteers worked alongside VHC’s staff to restore and care for conserved lands, setting a tradition of community involvement and volunteer support that continues today.

Ventura Hillsides Conservancy became Ventura Land Trust in 2017 to reflect a broadened vision to protect open spaces countywide. The organization was accredited by the Land Trust Alliance in 2019, joining a network of more than 400 accredited land trusts across the nation that have demonstrated a commitment to professional excellence and to maintaining the public’s trust in their work.

VLT now holds 3,877 acres of land in seven preserves across Ventura County—including the hillsides that inspired the organization’s founding, now known as Mariano Rancho Preserve. Ventura’s first large-scale nature preserve, Harmon Canyon Preserve, opened to the public in 2020.

VLT’s 20th anniversary will be acknowledged throughout 2023 with special events and opportunities for the public to be part of envisioning VLT’s next 20 years. The 20th birthday part is free to the public, but RSVPS are encouraged at

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