The Month Ahead

If you like to plan ahead, this monthly feature will be your guide and calendar. Just snip it out of the paper and attach it to the fridge.

To contribute suggestions for next month’s calendar, send a letter by March 22 to the Month Ahead, Los Angeles Times, 93 S. Chestnut St., Ventura 93001.

For information, call 653-7570.

Art Demonstration, Dinner


Wednesday, March 1

The Westlake Village Art Guild presents a demonstration by art teacher Susan Gordon, beginning with a social hour at 6 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m., at the Thousand Oaks Inn, 75 Thousand Oaks Blvd. The demonstration begins at 8 p.m. She will share her conviction that good drawing is basic to good painting. Tickets for dinner and demonstration are $22, $4 for the demonstration alone. Dinner reservations or information: 498-7859.

Meet the Musician

Thursday, March 2


The New West Symphony Conejo League presents a meeting with pianist Arnaldo Cohen at 9:30 a.m. in the Founders Room of the Fred Kavli Theater at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. New West Director Boris Brott will interview the acclaimed pianist, who will perform March 3 and 4 at the Civic Arts Plaza. Refreshments will be served. Free. Information: (818) 991-6123.

Gem and Mineral Show

March 3, 4

The Ventura County Gem and Mineral Society presents its 38th annual Rock, Gem and Fossil Show from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, 10 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura. There will be exhibits from private collections, children’s activities, demonstrations, and dealers selling everything from minerals and books to fine gems. Information: 642-4957.

Creative Options Day

Saturday, March 4

Cal Lutheran University holds its 21st annual Creative Options Day for women with Marcia Ann Gillespie, editor-in-chief of Ms. magazine, serving as keynote speaker. The day begins at 8:45 a.m. and runs until 4 p.m. There will be a variety of workshops on topics including self-help, political and health-related issues. Tickets are $30 general admission, $20 senior citizens, $10 students. Reservations are encouraged. Reservations or information: 493-3345.

Benefit Cat Show


March 4, 5

The Cat Fanciers Assn. will hold a benefit cat show and tribute to the Maine coon cat from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, 10 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura. The event features up to 225 award-winning pedigreed cats and a special household pet competition. Admission is $6, $4 for children. Proceeds benefit local humane societies, a variety of cat-related causes and the Robert H. Winn Feline Foundation. Information: (800) 400-CATS

Spring Craft-A-Rama

Sunday, March 5

The Conejo Valley Historical Society presents its 24th annual Spring Craft-A-Rama from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Thousand Oaks Recreation Center, 2525 Moorpark Road. Local artists and crafters will sell hundreds of items. Food will be available. Proceeds will be used to support the Stagecoach Inn Museum, Timber Schoolhouse, Tri-Village Complex and other community programs. Free. To reserve a crafters booth or information: 499-7526.

Women’s History

March 6, 7

Ventura College will celebrate Women’s History Month with actor Suzanne Lawrence and musician-storyteller Dorothea Phelan performing living history at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the Fireside Lounge and 3:30 p.m. Tuesday on the library patio at 4667 Telegraph Road. Phelan will perform traditional Irish songs and tales, and Lawrence will act out the life story of Molly Shannon, an Irish woman. This event is sponsored by the Ventura College Foundation. Free. Information: 654-6400, Ext. 1218.


Talk With Local Artist

Tuesday, March 7

Focus on the Masters Tuesday Talk Series presents artist Nancy Rupp from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Laurel Theater, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Rupp is a widely exhibited Oriental brush painter specializing in bold ink work, a technique of traditional Chinese brush painting. Rupp, who has been invited by Chinese, Japanese and Korean peers to four international exhibitions, received her master’s degree in oceanography and then pursued painting when raising her daughters. Tickets are $8, free to students under 18. Information: 649-9366.

Award-Winning Puppets

Saturday, March 11

Performances to Grow On presents the Coad Puppets of Canada in “Dinosaur in the Closet” at 7 p.m. at the Oak Grove Pavilion, 220 W. Lomita Ave., Ojai. The program will feature two pieces, “Box of Feelings” and “There’s a Dinosaur in the Closet.” The puppet troupe has won numerous major puppetry awards, including first prize at the International Festival of Puppet Actors in Poland. Tickets, $6 for children and $8 for adults, are available at Adventures for Kids, 3457 Telegraph Road, Ventura, and by telephone. Tickets or information: 650-9688.

Celebrate St. Paddy’s Day

March 11, 12

The 12th annual Ventura County St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival begins at 10 a.m. Saturday on Main Street and runs from Cemetery Park to the mission in Ventura. The parade theme this year is “World Peace in the Millennium.” State Sen. Jack O’Connell (D-San Luis Obispo) representing Gaelic Irishmen (the Green) and Dr. Joyce Kennedy representing Scots-Irish (the Orange) will lead the parade as grand marshals. The festival will follow and also run from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. Information: 649-1412.

Ballet Troupe Performs

March 11-12, 16, 18-19

Marla Bingham Contemporary Ballet presents “Firebird, a Native American Vision” at 7:30 p.m. Saturdays, 2:30 p.m. Sunday and 3 p.m. Thursday at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Scherr Forum Theater, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. The program features various dances, including the premiere of the company’s new work, “Something Different.” Tickets are $25 to $30 weekends, and $18 March 16. Tickets or information: 449-ARTS.

Benefit Surf Contest

March 11, 12

The Ventura Surf Club presents the Arden Taylor Benefit Surf Contest at Surfers Point across from Seaside Park, 10 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura. The contest benefits Arden Taylor, who was diagnosed with inoperable cancer, and his family. A portion of the proceeds will also benefit the American Cancer Society. To register for the contest or information: 671-9939.

Choral Concert

Sunday, March 12

The Gold Coast Concert Chorus performs “Masses for a New Millennium” at 4 p.m. at Padre Serra Parish, 5205 Upland Road, Camarillo. The concert features the premiere of “Missa Anno Domini 2000" composed by Kenneth Helms and “Communion in E Minor” composed by Terrence Minogue. It will be performed by 110 Gold Coast Chorus members and a 43-piece orchestra. Tickets are $12, $10 for senior citizens, students and children. Tickets or information: 647-6147.

Paddy’s Irish Cabaret

Friday, March 17

The Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza presents Paddy’s Irish Cabaret at 8 p.m. at 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. The show will bridge the past Irish music of Paddy Noonan with the present, featuring the best Irish talent on the stage. The show stars Glen Curtin, known as the velvet voice; comedian Eddie Devine and Irish dancers and music including Noonan’s daughter, Sheila Noonan. Tickets are $16.50 to $26.50. Tickets or information: 449-ARTS.

Irish Luncheon

Friday, March 17

A St. Patrick’s Day luncheon and show hosted by the Goebel Senior Adult Center will run from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on the top floor of the Holiday Inn, 450 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura. The Irish luncheon consists of corned beef and cabbage. Entertainment will be provided by the Mountain Folk Singers. Tickets are $47 per person. Registration or information: 381-2744.

Beethoven Revisited

Saturday, March 18

Los Robles Master Chorale, the Ventura Master Chorale and the Conejo Valley Symphony Orchestra with guest conductor Vance George will perform Beethoven’s “Missa Solemnis” at 8 p.m. at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Fred Kavli Theater, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. Tickets cost $12 to $30. Information: 497-0386.

Fashion Fund-Raiser

Wednesday, March 22

The Thousand Oaks Women’s Club will hold “The Millennium Saga: A Trek Through Fashion” at 10 a.m. at the Thousand Oaks Inn, 75 Thousand Oaks Blvd. The presentation will begin at 10:30 a.m., followed by a Chinese chicken salad luncheon and raffle. Tickets are $35. Proceeds benefit the Conejo Free Clinic’s Well Baby Program, Manna and the Crisis Pregnancy Center. Tickets or information: 498-4153.

World Music Events

March 24-26

The “Music Alive!” weekend of world music will feature flamenco, gypsy, Spanish and Cuban music in locations throughout Ventura. A flamenco party opens the weekend at 8 p.m. Friday at the Pierpont Inn, 550 Sanjon Road. Yaelisaa and Solera Flamenco Dance Company will entertain. Gypsy art and flamenco dance will be featured at 11 a.m. Saturday at the new Harriet Henson Gazebo in Plaza Park, Santa Clara and Fir streets. Ventura City Hall will host Cuba Alive at 8 p.m. Saturday, with the piano duo of Gloria Cheng and Vicki Ray. On Sunday, guitarists will play Spanish music at 2 p.m. at Temple Beth Torah, 7620 Foothill Road. Also Sunday, an orchestra will perform Spanish and Cuban works at 7 p.m. in the Laurel Theatre, 1006 Main St. Tickets for the entire weekend are $60. For prices on individual events or information: 497-5800.

Musical Comedy

March 24-26, 31

Cabrillo Music Theater and the Gold Coast Performing Arts Assn. present the musical “Funny Girl” at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Fred Kavli Theater, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. Tickets cost $14 to $32. Tickets or information: 449-ARTS.

Percussive Dance Show

Friday, March 31

Performances to Grow On presents the Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble in a special program, “Incredible Feets,” at 7 p.m. at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza’s Scherr Forum Theater, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. The show is a fusion of live music, comedy, singing and array of percussive dance forms rooted in different cultures. Tickets, at $12 for children and $15 for adults, are available at the box office, Adventures for Kids in Ventura, the Ojai Coffee Roasting Co. and by phone at 650-9688. Information: 646-8907.

Compiled by ALEX FIELD / Los Angeles Times