Up Close with Powerhouse Sanyika “The Firestarter”

“We live in a world where the narrative drives the action and the attention—nowadays the story we tell ourselves and the stories we tell the world are the most valuable forms of currency,” says Sanyika, a resident of Westlake Village and founder of The Firestarter Nation.

Smile and a Song Brings Dreams to Life

“Once upon a time,” and even today, many a young child has dreamed of being a fairy-tale hero. Joanna Bert is living the dream and helping make girls’ and boys’ storybook dreams come true.

A Fun Grgich Hills Estate Wine Dinner

The Four Seasons Hotel in Westlake Village has been a favorite destination for “staycations,” dining, spa days and other well-deserved treats. Robin and I discovered the recently remodeled brasserie-inspired Coin & Candor Restaurant, a casual and sophisticated dining experience complete with top-notch local ingredients and wood-fired cooking techniques inspired by Executive Chef Jose Fernandez.

Camarillo Nurse Leaves a Slice of California With CSUCI

Dialysis nurse Cherie Nedderman loved art for art’s sake. The walls of her Camarillo home on the hill were covered with frame after frame of sycamore trees, tumbling waves and rolling green hills. Paintings echoing the peace she found in the California landscape.

La Reina Visual and Performing Arts Academy

The arts at La Reina offer young women an additional pathway for finding their personal voice. In keeping with the vision of the Sisters of Notre Dame, the arts are an important part of the school’s mission of educating the whole person, nurturing and encouraging them to discover and foster their God-given talents, develop their creativity and imagination and participate…

Examining Autism

Marcia Hinds and her husband, Frank, were devastated when their 4-year-old son was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The psychiatrist, a leading specialist in the Minneapolis area where the Westlake Village couple then lived, told them he would probably need to be institutionalized.

Stay Healthy & Fit with Local Wellness Providers

Abundant beauty and natural resources top the list of things to love in this region, as do the many skilled and talented area health and wellness providers. Whatever health needs may arise, finding an expert provider to address concerns and keep us fit and healthy is a breeze. Here are a few of our favorites!

Channel Islands Marine & Wildlife Institute

It all started with the dream of 5-year-old boy living in St. Louis, Missouri. He wanted to save animals and he loved the water! Sam was also a smart, curious and adventurous kid with an easy smile and gregarious laugh. As Sam grew up so did his passion for making a difference and love of life. He worked hard to…

Los Robles Health System Enters 2020 with a 2019 Full of Firsts

Serving the Conejo Valley for more than 51 years, Los Robles Health System is starting the New Year off with new technology, an expanded facility, an internal medicine residency program slated with a summer start, and much more.

Celebrating School Choice

When it comes to education, area residents enjoy a wide variety of top-quality schools and resources for enhanced learning. Now is the time to submit School Choice applications, which allow students who live outside a school’s neighborhood boundaries to apply to enroll in a particular school on a space-available basis. The abundance of area public, private, hybrid and supplemental educational…

So Much Fun It Is!

The holidays are all about gathering with family and friends to connect, eat and participate in all types of merry-making annual traditions. The many festivities set for the season provide ample opportunities for making memories. Enjoy some of these favorite holiday celebrations with loved ones, young and old.

Rising Stars

The Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza recently celebrated 25 years of bringing arts and entertainment to the Conejo Valley. Pacific Festival Ballet has been a part of that story since 1994 and continues to make dance history in the community today.

Social Justice Fund Creates Change in Ventura County

 Social Justice Fund Creates Change in Ventura County  By Kateri Wozny  There’s a nonprofit in town fighting for social justice issues in Ventura County.

Cook Smart this Holiday Season with WDC Kitchen & Bath Center

Tis the season for family traditions like whipping up special holiday meals and treats to enjoy with loved ones. Today’s smart kitchens make light work of creating the perfect holiday feast, providing convenience and time-saving shortcuts so ease and joy become the focus of the season.

Nonprofits Rewarded for Efforts

November marks the one-year anniversary of the Borderline Bar and Grill shooting (Nov. 7) and also the one-year anniversary of the Hill and Woolsey wildfires (Nov. 8).

Planned Giving Strategies with Montecito Bank & Trust

Planned Giving is an important component of and a significant contributor to the financial success and sustainability of nonprofit organizations.

Covered 6: Lending a Hand to Our Veterans

An Army Reservist for 14 years, Margurie Evans discovered Covered 6 while working at the post office and looking to utilize her specialized skill set she learned in the military.

America’s Best Christmas Display is Just a Short Drive Away!

If you didn’t know that there is a full-blown winter wonderland right here in Los Angeles, then you have certainly been missing out. For more than 65 years, Aldik Home has been dazzling Southern Californians (and visitors from all over the globe!) with a jaw-dropping display of the most beautiful Christmas décor found anywhere in the world. Each year is…

Taking Control, Becoming Whole: Women Tickled “P.ink” with Mastectomy Tattoos

When Westlake Village resident Sherri Rosenthal, then 60, learned she had stage 1 breast cancer in 2013, she reacted calmly. Even though the invasive ductal cancer tumor in her left breast was small and not aggressive, she told the breast surgeon she wanted both breasts removed.

Cups of Courage–

“You can still be sexy after cancer!” declared Lisa Tivens as she put the finishing touches on her burlesque-style bra, adorned with roses and lace fringe. Tivens, a breast cancer survivor, was among 12 or so participants in the Cups of Courage–The Sisterhood of the Traveling Bras workshop, which took place at the Oaks Mall in Thousand Oaks on August…

Healthy Living Reduces Breast Cancer Risk

“Cancer is most often a lifestyle disease,” says Dr. Darren Clair, MD and founder of Vibrance Medical Group in Westlake Village, noting that “80% of breast cancer occurs in women with NO family history!” Genetics play a significant role, but only when influenced by lifestyle.

Avid Photographer Captures Early Conejo Valley

If you’ve ever been in a restaurant or business with photographs depicting open spaces and ranch life before development in Thousand Oaks or Westlake Village, chances are Ed Lawrence is the photographer. Originally from Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania, Ed first visited California during Army basic training before being shipped off to Germany. After completing his tour, Ed had no interest in…

Patient-Focused Physician Aims to Improve Vision for All

From the time we open them in the morning until we close them at bedtime, our eyes play a very important role in our lives and well-being. So when age-related or genetic issues affect our vision, an experienced, skilled physician like Dr. Rajesh Khanna of Khanna Vision Institute in Westlake Village is essential to restoring your eyes to health.

Reach for the Stars Gala Celebrates YMCA

The Reach for the Stars 3rd Annual Gala on Sept. 21 will raise money for two signature programs offered by the Southeast Ventura County YMCA—Find My Genius and Safety Around Water.

Locals Lace Up to Fund Research & Change Lives

This month on September 28, hundreds will gather at Cal State Channel Islands’ El Dorado Park to participate in the 2019 Ventura County Heart & Stroke Walk. Hosted by The American Heart Association, the Heart Walk is among 300 Heart Walks held in communities across the nation with the mission to fund research to cure heart disease and stroke.

Engineering Teacher Strives to Build Student Success

"To reach a child's mind, a teacher must capture their heart." —Dr. Haim Ginott

Local Schools Make the Grade

Schools throughout the Conejo Valley are especially unique for their award-winning programs, high test scores and graduation rates that lead the majority of their students to top colleges and universities. Here is a glimpse of what schools throughout Conejo Valley have to offer:  

Connecting Careers to the Classroom:

Walk into any classroom at the Ventura County Office of Education Career Education Center Moorpark campus and it quickly becomes evident that these are not your typical school rooms. Rather than the usual cluster of numerous desks, these classrooms may surprise campus visitors with their unusual accoutrements, including a recording studio, a radio station and even hospital beds and equipment—that’s…

Charity Karaoke Singing for a Good Cause

At this month’s Charity Karaoke: Sing for a Cause event, 20 local nonprofit representatives will compete on stage with a live band at The Canyon, Agoura Hills on August 11, each vying to win “Best Performance” and a $1,000 prize for their charity. Before the on-stage event, contestants are collecting donations for their nonprofits, with the aim of winning the…

Summer Fun

This summer make it a point to spend some quality time with family and friends exploring some of the many exciting activities and events around town and (not too far!) beyond. Both young and old will enjoy making memories to last a lifetime.

Broadway in Your Backyard:

5-Star Theatricals, the Ovation Award-winning resident musical theatre company of the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, is a nonprofit organization with a mission to provide the highest-quality theatre experience as well as serve their community with the many outreach programs they offer.

United Way of Ventura County:

A local nonprofit is setting the bar by focusing on education, financial stability and health for the well-being of Ventura County residents.

Lighten Up at Westlake Body Contouring:

When then-retired chiropractor Dianne Lalena Sandberg, D.C., first discovered the amazing power of LED light therapy to essentially “melt” fat and dissolve inches, she resolved to share this technology with the public.

Celebrating Men

 Eric Allaman, Composer  Former Malibu resident, currently in Sonoma County  Words to Live By: One day at a time!

Own Your Health: Proactive Tips for Men

If you are burdened with complicated health problems, you have probably been referred to Dr. G. In practice for over 30 years, Dr. Miguel Gonzalez is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Diseases. For many years, he was busy managing hospital patients in the Los Robles Hospital ICU/CCU as well as a thriving primary and pulmonary care practice. In…

Divorce Mediation: Creating Agreements for Life

What do we know about divorce? It can be a scary, emotionally devastating and financially destructive process that can cause long-term damage to families, especially children, but is that inevitable? 

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County: Mentoring Potential

Across Ventura County, youth are facing more adversity than ever before.

Leading Ladies

Community leaders grace us with their presence, perseverance and ability to achieve their dreams while making a positive difference in the lives of others. Here, we celebrate a handful of incredible local women who inspire with their service, accomplishments and commitment to succeed.

“Women Elevated!”

Celebrating its 20th year, BRAVO celebrates women in business and leadership who are breaking barriers, forging new ground and pursuing their goals with fearless fortitude.

WEV

Women’s Economic Ventures—also known as WEV—is a nonprofit organization, serving Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, which provides business training, consulting and loans to help entrepreneurs start, grow and thrive in business.

Camelot Comes to the Conejo Valley

Knights of the Round Table, King Arthur, Merlin and Queen Guinevere are everyday discussion topics for artistic director Kim Maselli, as are conversations about fairies, dragons and giants.

Home Sweet Home

From construction and design to appliances, furnishings and landscape, enlisting the expertise of industry pros makes the process of creating your dream home a whole lot easier—and helps ensure an outcome you’ll be happy to live with for years to come.

Exhibit Portrays Artist’s Evolution “From Dawn to Dusk”

Sam Francis: From Dusk to Dawn, on exhibit at Heather James Fine Art in Palm Desert through April 29, is a great opportunity to see Francis’ evolution as an artist, as it comprises 28 paintings and works on paper, spanning from 1955 to 1994.

Social Services Agency Provides Relief for Wildfire Victims

A nonprofit social services agency is helping wildfire victims of the Hill and Woolsey fires find comfort and hope by providing useful information for the long-term recovery process.

WDC Kitchen & Bath Center: Your One-Stop Shop for Appliances

Originating in 1981 as a 2,000-square-foot appliance showroom called Warehouse Discount Center in Agoura Hills, the family-owned WDC Kitchen & Bath Center now operates five luxurious showrooms throughout Southern California, featuring kitchen appliances, outdoor barbeques, plumbing fixtures and most recently, mattresses.

Wailani and Rescue + Freedom Project

There is nothing better than looking good and doing good at the same time. Jessica Yuda-Humer, founder and president of Wailani Beauty, shows the way.

Animal-Loving Nonprofits Come to the Rescue During Wildfires

Area residents will not soon forget the harrowing days of the Woolsey and Hill fires when raging firestorms burned thousands of acres, destroying hundreds of homes and causing more than 200,000 people and their pets to take refuge in evacuation centers.

Nonprofit Donations to Benefit Borderline Shooting, Hill/Woolsey Fire Victims

A local nonprofit has dedicated its time and energy by focusing on preserving Ventura County and giving back to its residents who were affected by two recent tragedies.

Stage Presence: 5-Star Theatricals Entertains & Educates

5-Star Theatricals is the same beloved Cabrillo Music Theater—just under a new name—that showcases Broadway-caliber productions to the community by hiring professional actors, both equity and non-equity, to perform with a live orchestra. 

Music Director Leads Symphony to New Heights

“And now for a big surprise. Tonight is a joyous celebration and I cannot imagine a better time and place to make this announcement, in front of 300 close friends of the Symphony,” teased Natalia Staneva, chief executive officer of New West Symphony, at the organization’s December gala. “Ladies and gentlemen, it is my great pleasure to introduce to you…