Category Archives: This ‘n’ That

Seaside Highland Games cancelled

It is with deep regret the Board of Directors for the Seaside Highland Games is compelled to announce that the 2021 Games will not take place.​

Although the Board worked diligently with the Ventura County Fairgrounds to seek ways to hold the 2021 Games, the options presented by the Fairgrounds eliminated our access to major portions of the Fairground’s parking and event facilities. After much discussion, the Board determined that, given the significant limitations currently mandated by the Fairgrounds, it would not be possible to hold Games that would in any way provide the level of entertainment and quality of experience Seaside has proudly delivered for the past 17 years.​

While this is an extremely disappointing result of careful and time-consuming negotiations, the Board has been assured that the Fairgrounds intend to return to full access for 2022. Accordingly, the Board is committed to providing an outstanding games experience and will be back next October the 8th and 9th for a triumphant return.

Home Energy Savings Toolkits

Javier Saucedo of Ventura County’s Green Business Program will visit the Hill Road Library at 1pm on Thursday, September 23, to explain and demonstrate the contents of the DIY Home Energy Savings Toolkits currently available for lending from Ventura County Library locations.

3C-REN and the Ventura County Library have partnered to create the DIY Home Energy Savings Toolkit. The toolkit includes tools, equipment, and a guide to help you save energy and increase the comfort of your home. There are items for you to keep, like LED light bulbs, outlet gaskets, weatherstripping, and water leak detection dye tablets; and tools to return, like an infrared laser thermometer and a Kill-A-Watt meter. Join this event for a demo of the kit, to ask your questions, and to learn about other sustainability programs in your area.

Javier Saucedo joined the construction trade in 1990, continuing until 2006 when he became an energy conservation specialist working with SoCalGas, SCE, and California weatherization programs. He currently leads the County’s Green Business Program, performs residential and commercial energy audits, and oversees quality control on energy saving upgrades.

This event is free and open to the public. For additional information, contact Linda Cherry, Librarian, at (805) 677-7180.

The Hill Road Library is located at 1070 S. Hill Road in Ventura, CA. Hours of service are 10am to 6pm Monday through Wednesday, 12pm to 6pm Thursday and Friday, and 10am to 2pm on Saturday.

11th Annual Backpack Gift~Away was huge success!

This year’s theme was Pirates & Mermaids!

Kids & Families Together (K&FT), Heart 2 Heart, along with River Community Church, hosted the 11th Annual Backpack Gift~Away Drive-Thru event on Saturday, August 14th. The event served 182 foster/resource, kinship, adopted and bio children from 72 families, who are currently working in programs with Kids & Families Together.

It was a beautiful day at River Community Church for the 11th back to school Gift~Away event! This year’s theme was Pirates & Mermaids! As with prior drive-thru events, our guests and volunteers had a great time dressing in costume and decorating their vehicles. Pirate and mermaid themed decorations, live music, and sparkly bubbles, made the day fun for all! With over 50 jolly buccaneer volunteers, we provided backpacks filled with age appropriate school supplies, clothing and other donations. As families left the event, a box lunch was provided, allowing them the opportunity to enjoy a beautiful picnic lunch together at the beach or local park.

We are grateful to everyone who made this event possible and for helping so many children in care return to school with confidence and the supplies they need for a fun and successful school year! Thank you to our K&FT family, events planning committee, board members, partners, donors, and volunteers! Everyone helped make this year’s back to school event magical.

Kids & Families Together (K&FT) is a nonprofit that has been serving foster/resource, adoptive, kinship, and birth families throughout Ventura County since 2000. K&FT works with children who have experienced trauma, abuse, neglect, loss, and multiple placements. K&FT also works with caregivers who need specialized education, support, and strategies to help raise safe, healthy, nurtured children who thrive. For more information about K&FT please visit us at:

To learn about all K&FT events supporting Ventura County Foster/Resource, Kinship, Adoptive, and Bio-families please visit:

Dear Wild & Scenic Film Festival guests

Thank you for joining us on August 28th for Ventura Land Trust’s 12th annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival on the campus of Ventura County Credit Union.

Your support through Wild & Scenic makes its possible for Ventura Land Trust to permanently protect the land, water, wildlife and scenic beauty of the Ventura region for current and future generations. Thanks to you, Ventura Land Trust conserves and cares for nearly 4,000 acres of sensitive habitat in and around Ventura.

The Ventura Land Trust Team

Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast Introduces “Infant at Work” Program

Bring a kid to work.

Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast launched an “Infant at Work” program today allowing parents to bring their infant to work for up to six months. “I believe it is imperative that we do our best to support newborn parents and guardians,” says CEO, Tammie Helmuth. An infant’s first few months are crucial to their development. It is during this time that the infant and their parent form a lifelong bond and a trusting, healthy relationship.

Through this new program, employees who are new mothers, fathers, or legal guardians will be allowed to bring their infant to work for up to six months. This, in turn, promotes a healthy work/life balance and honors the contribution that the employee makes to the council. “This program shows that the council’s practices are what we encourage in our communities; supporting parent and infant bonding, parental well-being, healthy infant development, and breastfeeding,” said Helmuth.

Parents will have the opportunity to respond to their infant’s needs instantly, which will boost their cognitive development. Bonding is a process on its own, it is not something that occurs overnight, it must be nurtured and built up as time goes on. The “Infant at Work” program supports all facets of infant development. This program is invaluable for both parents and infants alike. Helmuth states: “as a female leadership organization, this program undoubtedly aligns with our mission as we know, and support, the value of parent and infant bonding during the earliest stages of life.” It goes without question that Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast is delighted to introduce the new “Infant at Work” program to their workplace.

NAWBO Ventura County Announces Special September Event

The Ventura County chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO VC), along with Gold Corporate Sponsor Chase Bank is pleased to announce this month’s event: “Get a Seat at the Table”. This event will be an expert panel discussion and will be held virtually on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 from 4:30 to 5:30 pm. Registrants may log in early at 4:00pm for social networking to connect or reconnect with their community of friends and business associates.

Expert Panel:
Senator Monique Limón
Member of California
State Senate
19th Senate District

Lori Kammerer
Kammerer & Company, Inc., Government Relations
NAWBO-CA, Legislative Advisor

Dawn Dyer, President/CEO
Dyer Sheehan Group, Inc.
NAWBO Ventura County Chapter, Public Policy Director

The history of NAWBO (National Association of Women Business Owners) is rooted in public policy.  The goal, exclaimed NAWBO’S Founding President Susan Hager, was to “Get a seat at the table or build our own table, and make sure to include other women.”  NAWBO members helped draft and were instrumental in the passage of the 1988 (U.S.) Women’s Business Ownership Act (H.R. 5050) which prohibited discrimination against women in obtaining business credit without male co-signors. More recent, NAWBO successes include sponsoring CA SB 826 to ensure women have a seat at the table on corporate boards.  Engage with Senator Limón, and this esteemed panel of experts to learn more about current legislative measures and the importance businesswomen contribute during these historic times.

Register -Reserve your online access at

NAWBO Ventura County – The local Ventura County chapter of NAWBO is committed to strengthening the wealth creating capacity of its members while promoting economic development within the entrepreneurial Ventura County community. Additionally, the local chapter advocates for innovative and effective change in the business culture, building strategic alliances and transforming public policy for the benefit of its members. Membership is open to women sole proprietors, partners and corporate owners as well as those companies and organizations that support women-owned businesses. Learn more:

The Bookmark About Libraries and Friends

The new, expanded Ventura Friends of the Library Bookstore on the first floor of Foster Library.

by Jill Forman

Changes, changes …Mask Rules

As the pandemic ebbs and flows, the mask rules change before they are even published!

Masks must now be worn indoors by everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

Hill Road book group met in person outdoors on their patio. Foster book group plans a hybrid in-person/Zoom meeting. Contact your group leader with any questions.

Check with the library staff at your branch to keep informed.

Hill Road Express Hours

Do you have difficulty getting to the library during regular hours? Hill Road has an option for library patrons who need expanded times.

Express Access offers patrons admittance to the library in addition to staffed operating hours.

Applicants must present their library card, photo identification and proof of current address for verification purposes. They will sign a policy form and complete an orientation provided by the librarian.

Express hours are: 8 – 10 a.m. Monday-Wednesday; 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. Friday; 8 – 10 a.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday.

Need To Connect? Your library can help!

Need to connect but don’t have the equipment? Here is your answer.

Our Computer Kits consist of a Chromebook, hotspot, and charging cables, all in a carrying case. They check out to adults 18 and older for 4 weeks and may be automatically renewed up to 2 times if not requested by another customer. Kits must be returned to library staff; do not return to a book drop!

Find more information at our VC Connects website:

Kit includes:

  • A Chromebook with power cord
  • A hotspot
  • A USB charging cable and power adapter
  • Canvas bag
  • Mouse
  • Complimentary headset
  • A Note from Bookstore Manager Sandy Greenberg


Come visit the new Vintage Books section in the VFOL bookstore in Foster library. It may surprise you! It’s not just classic literature, but a look into the thoughts of everyday people in the past. Have you ever wondered what your grandparents thought was the key to a successful marriage in 1907? One book advises to “keep the honeymoon short to lessen the risk of disappointment or boredom “. Another book cautions “nervous women” to consider a good orgasm as a cure for their symptoms rather than a visit to the doctor.
We have recipes from General Electric to use with your “new-fangled refrigerator” including creamed sardines and eggs, and ways to make an ice block more attractive. We have self-help books which can help you develop your charm or the skills to think for yourself.
Our fiction ranges from Agatha Christie mysteries to adventure on the high seas, from romance novels such as 1900s “Girl in 10,000” to hardened detective stories from the ‘40s.
Jump in the time machine at the Vintage Books section. It’s a trip!

Join/volunteer! Give back to your community. Support your libraries. Or pick up a brochure at your local branch and mail it in. Get on the mailing list for email or hard copy newsletters.

Visit Ventura finishes in the top three in U.S. Travel Association National Award 

Marlyss Auster Visit Ventura CEO & President and Cheryl Shallanberger Vice President of Sales & Marketing accepting the National Award.

Visit Ventura was chosen as a finalist for a prestigious ESTO Award, finishing in the top three in a nationwide competition between destination marketing organizations across the country in a contest sponsored by the United States Travel Association. 

“We are beyond thrilled and so very proud of our Visit Ventura team,” said Marlyss Auster, Visit Ventura President & CEO.  “Finishing in the top three in a contest of this scope is a first for us, and that makes us proud. But we’re proudest of the program itself, which helped support our local Ventura businesses during a very difficult time. Our aim has always been to do the next right thing to help our community, in both good times and harder times. ”

Winners were announced at ESTO’s Awards Dinner on Tuesday, August 17 in Los Angeles, California. Ventura placed in the top three for their entry “Love, via Beer, in the Time of Covid” in the Virtual Programming category. The entry showcased Visit Ventura’s “Thirsty Thursday” program, an innovative virtual program that, among other things, helped boost both business and morale in the Ventura community during the pandemic.  

The U.S. Travel Association is a national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry. As the united voice of the industry, U.S. Travel prioritizes high-impact issues that matter most, identifying both the travel industry’s biggest opportunities and challenges. ESTO is an acronym for “Educational Seminar for Tourism Organizations.” 

Of late, of course, the biggest challenge has been the pandemic, and Visit Ventura’s “Thirsty Thursday” program addressed those challenges head-on. The program worked with happy simplicity. Each Thursday, a Ventura winery or brewery stepped up to the virtual counter to do a live virtual tasting on Facebook, the Visit Ventura team broadcasting the tasting to its 200,000-plus viewers and beyond. Viewers bought the beer and wine beforehand. During the tasting, the brewers and vintners explained the science-cum-magic behind the tastes while viewers happily sipped and asked questions via chat. The tastings strayed beyond beer and wine, into locally made chocolates and ice cream.

The program didn’t snowball; it galloped out of the gates. The total individual reaches of the live broadcasts ranged from 10,000 to 12,000 viewers. Brewers sold out of beer. The chocolatier sold 200 boxes of chocolates, earning roughly $10,000 at a time when sales were not quite, but very close to, hopeless. 

“We knew we wanted to help our community in the best way we could,” said Auster, who attended the Los Angeles awards ceremony with Visit Ventura Vice President of Sales & Marketing Cheryl Shallanberger. “Without visitors, our local businesses needed help. While we’re proud to be a finalist, what we’re truly proudest of is how the Ventura community stepped up to help keep our businesses in business.”

“It was a really fun program, but, on a serious note, it was something more,” added Shallanberger. “It may have just been beer and wine, but it was also a reminder of the things that matter. A positive attitude and caring. Invincible spirit. How good things always outlast the dark.”

Visit to learn more about the Visit Ventura team and how they contribute to driving Ventura’s economy through tourism.