Posted on July 18, 2023 by Christina Wicker
With sunshine and blue skies most days of the year, summertime in Conejo Valley offers activities the whole family can enjoy. Plan your summer vacation in Thousand Oaks and Agoura Hills to see another side of Southern California.
There’s nothing quite like music to soothe your soul. Fortunately, summer sounds are abundant here in Conejo Valley.
There are still several shows to see during the Agoura Hills Summer Concerts in the Park Series. The Conejo Valley Community Concert and Jazz Bands will perform with special guest artist Walt Johnson on July 23 at 6 p.m. at the Agoura High School PAEC. Prince Again, a Prince tribute band, will take the stage on Aug. 6 at Chumash Park, and Jumping Jack Flash, a Rolling Stones tribute band, will rock out on Aug. 20, also at Chumash Park. All of the concerts are free, although a donation of $2 is appreciated. Food will be available for purchase at each concert.
Thousand Oaks’ Summer Concerts in the Park series is also in full gear with performances by a variety of tribute bands. The Pat Benatar Experience will be held on July 23, followed by QRST (Queen Rush Styx Tribute) on Aug. 13 and the Midnight Rider Band (Allman Brothers tribute) on Sept. 4. All concerts are from 5 to 7 p.m. at Conejo Community Park. Bring your lawn chairs, blankets and picnic baskets.
There are tribute bands aplenty at The Canyon in Agoura Hills. Beatles vs. Elvis: A Musical Showdown pits the Abbey Road band against Scot Bruce and his group in a musical battle on July 28. Buffett Beach will take fans to Margaritaville with their Jimmy Buffett & The Coral Reefer Band tribute on Aug. 4. Taylor Made Tapestry and Fantastic Diamond will treat concertgoers to James Taylor, Carole King and Neil Diamond tributes on Aug. 5. Cover bands honoring The Eagles (Aug. 11), ’80s bands (Aug. 26) and Fleetwood Mac (Sept. 8) will also be featured at The Canyon.
Some performers will be making their way to the Bank of America Performing Arts Center in Thousand Oaks. John Lodge, the vocalist and bass player of The Moody Blues, will perform on July 29 at the Center’s Fred Kavli Theater. At the Scherr Forum Theatre, enjoy the comedy of Ryan Hamilton on Aug. 25 and the music of John Ondrasik – better known as Five For Fighting – on Sept. 27 and 28. Back at the Fred Kavli Theater, witness a unique blend of classical and contemporary ballet performed by Complexions Contemporary Ballet on Sept. 13. Cinderella, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s classic fairytale, is being presented by 5-Star Theatricals through July 23, also at the Fred Kavli Theater.
Some of Conejo Valley’s restaurants and breweries are known for more than just food and drinks. Pedals & Pints Brewing Company in Thousand Oaks is also serving up rock ’n’ roll and country music this summer. Among the scheduled artists are classic rock musicians Hellerhighwater on July 22, country rock band Westbound 66 on Aug. 12, country singer Justin Honsinger on Aug. 19 and blues and rock musician Angela Petrilli on Sept. 2. The Original Pizza Cookery will gladly serve you a mouthwatering pizza for dinner along with a helping of music most Fridays and Saturdays, with such artists as Danny Sinatra, Michael Quest, Restless Diesel and more.
Janss Marketplace, a community shopping and entertainment experience, features a large outdoor eating area, a fun splash water fountain and an outdoor kids play area. You can see and hear some fun musical acts as well, including the K-Tel All Stars on July 19, the Rag Dolls’ all-female Aerosmith tribute on July 26, and the Fooz Fighters, a Foo Fighters tribute band, on Aug. 2. Each concert is held from 6 to 8 p.m., so feel free to purchase dinner from one of the 20-plus restaurants and beverage establishments at the Marketplace.
Summer weather in Conejo Valley is as good as it gets, especially in the morning. So, it’s only natural that many folks around this area love to go for a walk or a ride on the region’s trails. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful, easy stroll or a path that a cross-country athlete would find challenging, Conejo Valley offers all types of summer activities. Choose from trails that are dog-friendly, or take on the hills with your bike. Other trails make the perfect stomping grounds for horseback riding lessons or guided rides if you’re ready to saddle up.
The Cheeseboro Canyon Trail in Agoura Hills is seen as a moderately challenging hike. With a good mixture of climbs and downhill portions, the 10.7-mile loop provides an excellent source of exercise. Leashed dogs, horses and bikes are all allowed on this beautiful path, which is scattered with large oak trees for shade and is an excellent location for birding.
The wide Modelo Trail, considered easy for the average hiker, extends 2.8 miles and begins in Agoura Hills. The highlight of this path is the amazing views of the canyons. Plan between 60 and 90 minutes to complete the trail, or enjoy a bit of a challenge by taking one of the connecting rails for a longer distance.
There are several trails that lead from Thousand Oaks’ Dos Vientos area, including a 5-mile loop path that is considered moderately challenging. Hikers, runners, bikers and horseback riders all share the trails.
If taking a leisurely stroll with the family sounds appealing, try the Sapwi Loop in Thousand Oaks. The new 2.4-mile loop trail is popular for hiking, mountain biking and running, and if you’re a fan of disc golf or picnics, you’ll be delighted to hear there is open space for lawn games.
Before taking off on a hike, everyone should pack plenty of water, along with sunscreen, a lightweight hat, sunglasses, packable rain gear and clothing you can layer.
Conejo Valley is known for its natural beauty, and few places showcase it as well as the Conejo Valley Botanic Garden in Thousand Oaks. Open daily, the area, consisting of 33 acres of natural terrain, features 15 specialty gardens. A Kids Adventure Garden is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sundays only. Admission is free, although donations are appreciated.
An excellent way to enjoy summer in Conejo Valley is by visiting the Gardens of the World, a 4.5-acre area that showcases five unique gardens. Created as a monument to commemorate the various cultures of the world, the landmark features gardens representing England, France, Italy, Japan and the California Mission Courtyard. Pathways lead around the gardens with a variety of plants, flowers and water features. There is also a traditional bandstand located in the center of the gardens.
The first home in Agoura Hills was built in 1850 by landowners Jose Reyes and Maria Altgracia Reyes de Vejar. It is now the Reyes Adobe Historical Site, with outdoor displays and a museum/cultural center highlighting a timeline of the property. A bonus is an adjoining park with a playground and picnic facilities, so pack your goodies and make a day of it.
Adjacent to the beautiful Rancho Sierra Vista National Park and the Satwiwa Native American Indian Cultural Center is the Rancho Potrero Community Equestrian Center. The center, located in Thousand Oaks, offers hour-long guided horseback rides to areas where you can see views of the ocean and the Channel Islands, and if you time it right, a beautiful sunset. Wildflower Hay Wagon Rides are also featured. Picnic tables are available, so spend a family day and enjoy the sights. Reservations are required.
Whether you’re here for business or pleasure, make sure to plan plenty of time to enjoy the excellent Conejo Valley restaurants, breweries and wineries, as well as the many outdoor adventures and indoor venues at your disposal. There are a variety of lodging options, so get away from the city hustle and bustle and enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of Conejo Valley.