Located just 90 minutes from Los Angeles and 30 minutes from the beach, the Ojai Valley is perfectly situated to take advantage of the best California has to offer. Its charming downtown corridor is characterized by Spanish Revival architecture and is filled with excellent restaurants, shopping, and wine and beer tasting opportunities. At the heart of it, all is the rambling Libbey Park, which features a large playground, tennis courts, and a world-class outdoor amphitheater, the Libbey Bowl. This artistic community is home to several galleries as well as the state’s oldest nonprofit art center but is also the hub of cutting-edge contemporary music with the annual Ojai Music Festival.

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Surrounding it all is the Los Padres National Forest, a wonderland offering myriad outdoor adventures — from casual morning hikes to world-class rock climbing. It’s not surprising, then, that its people are passionate about the environment, and support numerous organizations like the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy and its 2,000-plus acres of land free and open to the public.

Ojai is also a popular destination for spiritualists, as the home of the Krishnamurti Foundation and the Krotona Institute of Theosophy. And Ojai’s geographic orientation — it runs east to west, rather than north to south as most valleys do — has led some to hail it as a unique energy vortex, making it a sought-after destination for those seeking reflection, inner healing, and self-realization. The Chumash Native American tribes, too, have considered this area a sacred place for thousands of years.
But Ojai is also a thriving agricultural region that supports some of the best citrus, avocado, olive and lavender crops on the West Coast and beyond. A tight-knit community full of bohemians, outdoorsmen, artists, and innovators, Ojai stands as one of the jewels in California’s crown.

OJAI

Bart’s Books

By Tiobe Barron
Paris has the Eiffel Tower, London has its titular tower, San Francisco has its Golden Gate Bridge; Ojai has the Post Office tower, and Bart’s Books. Ojai’s iconic secondhand bookstore is a wonder that weaves together outdoor and indoor spaces, bookstore browsing, and something naturally and effortlessly “Ojai.”
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OJAI

Randy’s Recipes: Celebrate the Holidays with Comfort Food

Story and photos by Randy Graham
The year 2020 has been tough for many of us. For those of us with a passion for cooking (and eating), it has been particularly tough, with restaurants closing their doors, not to reopen for the foreseeable future if at all.
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OJAI

Teeing up on Ventura County Greens

By The Unknown Golfer
Soule, Olivas, and Buenaventura offer pristine views, diverse challenges. As people begin to venture out again, they’re rediscovering our regional golf courses. I am certainly no different; in fact, not playing golf was one of the hardest things about being confined to home for me. So when courses started to open, I was quick to get out and play, while taking all the recommended precautions.
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OJAI

Horses Helping Humans

By Amelia Simpson “Something beautiful always happens here!” Andrea Gaines says of her Horse, Heart and Connection workshops with an exuberant smile. Winston Churchill said it best when describing our connection with horses: “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.” Andrea Gaines spends her time in Ojai making sure as many people as possible experience that important connection.
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OJAI

Sweet local bicycle riding in Ojai and Ventura

By Bennett Barthelemy
We’ve been pushing our bikes 
up some of the hill. But we don’t mind because we are able to better appreciate the shimmering diamond light bouncing off the Pacific Ocean 15 miles away, and the Channel Islands swimming off in its hazy distance. Remnants of the devastating Thomas Fire two years ago are barely visible on the trail around us as the tenacious chaparral has rebounded after welcomed winter rains.
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OJAI

Ojai Film Festival Celebrates Two Decades

This fall the Ojai Film Festival celebrates 20 years of bringing film to Ojai, and pays tribute to classic Hollywood with Lifetime Achievement Awards honoring actors Pat Boone and Eva Marie Saint. For directors, screenwriters, producers, animators, actors, students, Hollywood veterans, Academy members, and industry insiders alike, the Ojai Film Festival welcomes filmmakers and film lovers from around the world Oct. 31 through Nov. 10.
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