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Celebrate Oak Awareness Month this October with OAKtober

Ventura, Calif. – The Ventura County Tree Coalition – a network of community organizations, nonprofits, land trusts, agencies, and like-minded groups dedicated to preserving and enhancing Ventura County’s tree canopy – is celebrating OAKtober this October with a number of community greening and education events throughout the county. Ventura County residents are encouraged to participate in OAKtober, also called Oak Awareness Month, by attending community events, learning about the benefits of oak and other trees, or participating in other ways.

Hikers exit an oak grove at Ventura Land Trust’s Harmon Canyon Preserve
Why are Oak Trees Important?

Oak trees are known as keystone species, meaning that they are critical to many ecosystems because they provide benefits to other plants and animals. Like other trees, oak trees cool the environment by sequestering carbon and by providing shade. Oak trees can grow up to 100 feet tall and can live to be over 1,000 years old.

OAKtober Events to Attend

The community is encouraged to attend events hosted by the Ventura County Tree Coalition. All events will have an environmental component on trees, but not all will involve oak trees. View the list of events below for more details. Note: Events are subject to change. 

Museum of Ventura County (100 East Main Street, Ventura, CA 93001)

Join the Museum of Ventura County in a celebration of oaks and native plants with Dr. David White of Once Upon a Watershed, Dave Muffly of Oaktopia, Jenn Rodriguez of Growing Works, Katie Tilford of TinyPlants, and Melina Watts author of Tree, in partnership with Melissa Baffa of Ventura Land Trust. Feel connected to your county’s environmental community with the local leaders and creatives creating a more sustainable future. Visit https://venturamuseum.org/event/oaktober/ to learn more.

Ventura County Government, Center Hall of Administration Board Room

Attend Ventura County Board of Supervisors board meeting to see the Board proclaim October as Oak Awareness Month. Visit https://www.ventura.org/board-of-supervisors/agendas-documents-and-broadcasts/ to view the agenda.

Kimball Community Park, bike path on the west side of park

Help clean the air by joining Ventura Tree Alliance in planting 20 oak trees to shade the path, in celebration of OAKtober. Volunteers are asked to bring shovels and gloves. Funds provided by California Clean Air Day.

Flourish Ojai  (214 W Aliso Street, Ojai CA)

Get ready to be inspired by two documentaries featuring local environmental restoration: Shepherds Song and Where There Once Was Water. Learn about the C.R.E.W.’s Green Valley Project! Visit https://www.greenvalleyproject.org/outdoor-saturdays to learn more.

Lower Libbey Park Parking Lot (210 S Signal St., Ojai, CA 93023)

Ojai Trees invites volunteers to spend a morning planting oaks and other trees to add to the Ojai Valley’s community forest. No experience necessary! Please bring work clothes, a hat, your own gloves, sunscreen, a water bottle, and a mask. Use the link to sign up to volunteer. https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeTwoeJQvRyfhgza9gclC1-pGsjtENpgQbkix64rbbYCEReEA/viewform 

City of Ojai Community Demonstration Garden (S Ventura St, Ojai, CA 93023) behind Ojai City Hall

Once Upon a Watershed and volunteers will be presenting to 6th graders from Matilija Middle School about acorn collecting and replanting for oak reforestation. People interested in volunteering will meet at 9 am at the City of Ojai Community Demonstration Garden.

VCRCD Office (3380 Somis Rd, Somis)

Celebrate Oak Awareness Month by receiving your own oak tree after becoming an oak tree expert. Hosted by the County of Ventura Sustainability Division, UC Cooperative Extension, and the Ventura County Resource Conservation District. Visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/420109317277 to RSVP.

Camarillo Grove Park (6968 E Camarillo Springs Rd, Camarillo)

Come out for a fun self-guided hike, hunt for treats, and enjoy other free activities. Hosted by Pleasant Valley Recreation Parks District. Visit https://www.pvrpd.org/2022-10-22-trail-or-treat to learn more. 

Potrero Road & Erinlea Avenue, Newbury Park, CA 91361

Join the National Park Service for an Oaktober volunteer event planting young oak saplings & helping to restore a young Oak Woodland! RSVP at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/oaktober-native-plant-restoration-at-rancho-sierra-vista-potrero-creek-tickets-419666482747?aff=ebdsoporgprofile.

Medea Creek Natural Park, Oak Park (meet at NW corner of Conifer St & Parkview Dr)

Join our neighborhood greenbelt walk and help collect and plant acorns while learning about the centuries-old oak trees, as seen in classic movies. Hosted by Friends of Oak Park Open Space. The Great Oak Park Oak Walk Tickets, Sun, Oct 23, 2022 at 2:00 PM | Eventbrite

Interested in ordering a native tree for your home? Want to nourish a tree and contribute to improving air quality? Order a tree from Ojai Trees by November 2nd by emailing trees@ojaitrees.org.

Ojai Meadows Preserve – Lomita Ave Entrance (398 S Lomita Ave, Ojai, CA 93023)

Ojai Valley Land Conservancy will be selling some of their favorite drought tolerant plants and a variety of wildflower seeds for you to grow at home in your garden. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to bring the beauty of the preserves to your yard! Visit https://ovlc.org/category/events/ to learn more.

Lower Libbey Park Parking Lot (210 S Signal St., Ojai, CA 93023)

Ojai Trees invites volunteers to spend a morning planting oaks and other trees to add to the Ojai Valley’s community forest. No experience necessary! Please bring work clothes, a hat, your own gloves, sunscreen, a water bottle, and a mask. Email Ojai Trees to sign up to volunteer at trees@ojaitrees.org

Can’t Attend? How you can Celebrate OAKtober

You can celebrate OAKtober in your own way as well! A list of suggested activities could include:

  • Celebrating California State Oak Day
  • Hosting an oak workday to plant or care for one or more trees;
  • Taking a walk or hike through an oak woodland;
  • Collecting acorns and planting them in areas that will be good for them;
  • Reading up on how to care for oak trees; or
  • Creating art inspired by oak trees.

Still need more information – you can learn more with educational materials provided by members of the Ventura County Tree Coalition.

About the Ventura County Tree Coalition

Formed in early 2022, the Ventura County Tree Coalition is a network of community organizations, nonprofits, land trusts, municipalities, and like-minded groups dedicated to preserving and enhancing Ventura County’s tree canopy. To learn more visit the Ventura County Tree Planting Program page.

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