Happy 15th Anniversary to The Ventura Ladies Luncheon 

Founder, Laurie Ann Meyer.

by Carol Leish, MA

Founder, Laurie Ann Meyer said, “I saw a need for a venue where women could gather at lunch time without interrupting their evening or morning schedules to come relax for a nice meal and be served.” That is why I started the group in June 2009 in which ladies’ network and gather without annual/monthly dues, have no minimum on categories, and pay only for the months that they can attend.

“We first met at My Florist and Bakery, which was in downtown Ventura, with 5 women. The next month we decided to do it again and had 15 women. We moved the third meeting to the Pierpont with 25 women. And, at the fourth luncheon we had over 40 women!  That is when I realized that we had something special going!”

Besides having met at the Pierpont, before they went through some changes, The Ladies Luncheon also met at the French Bakery in the Ventura Harbor for a few months before going back to meeting at the Pierpont.  After the Pierpont started remodeling, the group met for lunches at the Poinsettia Pavilion for many years.  “Then, in March, 2020, when COVID hit, the group met over Zoom, which was a challenging and interesting time” according to Meyer.  “We made it through that time!  Then, in 2022, post COVID; or, as it was winding down, we started meeting at The Greek Mediterranean Steak & Seafood, at the Ventura Harbor.   They have been a great venue with incredible owners and staff.”

Meyer mentioned how important it has been/continues to be to build relationships first and business second.  She said, “When an unlimited number of people in the same profession attend our luncheons, they end up collaborating instead of colliding.  It is the theory of, “When 2 or more are gathered.”

Besides having the monthly luncheons, the group gathers for evening wine mixers in locally owned women businesses.  In March of 2020, the Ladies Luncheon Ventura had their first all-day event:   “Radiant You”.  Meyer said, “We hope to be able to repeat this event soon, since it was very successful with over 100 attendees.  Hopefully in May, 2025.  In December, we substitute our monthly luncheon for a Holiday Boutique with holiday vendors, food, etc. We also invite men, including spouses, and friends.”

Meyer stressed how the group is, “Now about ‘Community, Connection and Support.’ While we support each other, and refer each other for our businesses, the LOVE that has been created is exponential. And, after 15 years, we have been through many ups and downs with each other, including adversities and successes.  The bond continues to be strong, and we are not going anywhere, except growing larger now that, since the pandemic, ladies have more of a desire to be able to connect in person.”

Sponsoring the monthly luncheon, “Gives ladies an opportunity to highlight their business through all our various marketing platforms, such as social media and our website.  By being able to present at the luncheon event exclusively, they have a great way of exposing what and how they do in their businesses.  Visit the sponsorship tab on our website for more information.”

Meyer emphasized that, “We are known for the best RAFFLE in town!  Because, in most cases for the monthly luncheon, EVERYONE leaves with a gift.  In addition, we all leave with a Gift of Love and a hug!  I am so grateful for all the love women have brought and continue to bring to each other at the Ladies Luncheon.  We meet on the first Thursday of every month.  Thank you, Ladies!  Happy 15 Year Anniversary to YOU!”

Please register on the website www.theladiesluncheon.com for the upcoming June 6, 15th Anniversary Luncheon Meeting at the Greek Mediterranean Steak & Seafood: 1583 Spinnaker Dr. #101; Ventura, CA 93001. For more information call Laurie at (805) 223-0154.  Come celebrate and gather with a wonderful group of ladies while eating delicious food!

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