Simi Valley is a city in the valley of the same name, is in the southeast corner of Ventura County, California, United States.Located just minutes from Los Angeles, Simi Valley offers a vibrant city full of cultural diversity, historical landmarks and beautiful rolling hills. Simi Valley with charm of a small town close to Southern California’s most famous attractions, the perfect choice for a getaway, meeting or wedding. The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library is in Simi Valley, where the admired former president was buried in 2004.
40 miles (65 km) from downtown Los Angeles, making it part of the Greater Los Angeles Area. The city sits next to Thousand Oaks, Moorpark, and Chatsworth. The city of Simi Valley is surrounded by the Santa Susana Mountain range and the Simi Hills, west of the San Fernando Valley, and northeast of the Conejo Valley. The area was founded on the site of a Chumash Indian village and designated a Spanish rancho in 1795. The settlement developed as a supply and transport centre for a large agricultural district (citrus and vegetables).
Simi Valley grew as a commuter bedroom community for the cities in the Los Angeles area and the San Fernando Valley when a freeway was built over the Santa Susana Pass. With the growth of the Los Angeles metropolitan area and the subsequent decline of agriculture, Simi Valley has become chiefly residential, with some manufacturing (clothing, electronic equipment, and furniture). The city’s attractions include the Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center (1995) and the Ronald W. Reagan Presidential Library and Museum. Los Padres and Angeles national forests are north of the city.
In Simi Valley there are two main areas of industry, one in the eastern part of the city and the other one in the west. The primary industry is machinery and tools with 69 firms, and the secondary is the metal Industry with 51 firms, both situated in the eastern and western industrial areas. Other industries such as Lumber/Wood Products, Food, Plastic Products, Apparel/Textiles and Minerals, are also concentrated largely in these industrial areas.
Living in Simi Valley offers residents a sparse suburban feel and most residents own their homes. In Simi Valley there are a lot of restaurants and parks. Many young professionals live in Simi Valley and residents tend to have moderate political views. The public schools in Simi Valley are highly rated.
Geographically, Simi Valley is close to the downtown area of Los Angeles, but it also provides a suburban scene, making it a choice for business meetings or short-term business trips. Many local venues offer party and event planning services in the Simi Valley area.
Due to the similar English homonym “See me”, Simi Valley is also an ideal place for weddings. Whether dreaming of a perfect fairytale wedding complete with a magnificently decorated chandelier-lit ballroom or dreaming of beautiful picture-perfect garden wedding, Simi Valley has a variety of different venues, each with its own unique personality.
Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum
Simi Valley is home to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. Learn about the 40th President of the United States through the Museum & Library’s many permanent and visiting exhibitions. This one-of-a-kind museum set on a beautiful hilltop with stunning views of the valley. The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum encompasses more than 100 acres of collections and beautiful gardens in a dramatic hilltop setting overlooking the ocean and Southern California.
After a major state funeral in Washington, D.C., President Reagan was buried at the library in June 2004. The library adjoins a hangar in which the Boeing 707 SAM 27000 (Air Force One), which served presidents Nixon through G.W. Bush, is housed and available for tours. In the pavilion are various automobiles used to transport the president, as well as Marine One, the presidential helicopter.
Air Force One Pavillion – Board and tour the same Air Force One that President Reagan flew more than 660,000 miles in.
Oval Office – Get inside the White House when walk through an exact replica of President Reagan’s Oval Office, complete with his preferred decor and of course a jar of jelly beans on the desk.
Berlin Wall – A large section of the Berlin wall that was donated to the museum and has become a symbol for democracy and freedom.
Secret Service Exhibit – This exhibit tells the story of the United States Secret Service’s founding and history and includes fun interactive activities for kids.
Reagan Library Grounds – Stroll through replicas of the White House’s Rose Garden and South Lawn. Afternoon sunsets from the hilltop gardens are particularly beautiful.
Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center
This gothic building was first a family home, then a church, then a mortuary and is now a historical landmark. The building now houses a theatre for live plays.
Skateboarding Hall of Fame and Museum
The Skateboarding Hall of Fame and Museum was created to honor the passion, dedication and contributions to skateboarding history and culture by skateboarders and cultural icons throughout the decades. The museum has been operating since 1997, features over 5,000 vintage boards dating back to the 1940’s, and possesses the world’s largest collection of skateboard memorabilia.
Find hours of entertainment at this top spot for lasertag and gaming. With multiple levels spread across more than 5,000 square feet, Lazertag Extreme is one of the top facilities for lasertag. Kids will also love the Lazer Maze, yummy cafe food, and all of the best arcade games.
Test your skating skills at Iceoplex, a premier skating facility right here in Simi Valley. Families will enjoy the public skating hours. This is a great way to introduce your children to this sport. There are also lessons and beginner clinics available if your kids are interested in pursuing figure skating or hockey.
Conejo Valley Archers
This activity is a guaranteed bull’s-eye for family fun. Conejo Valley Archers offers a session to train young archers.
Offering two locations in Simi Valley Harley’s Bowl is a great stop for the family to enjoy. Harley’s offers bumper bowling for the little ones, plus arcade games, and food and beverages.
Studio Movie Grill
Featuring 9 auditoriums outfitted with custom lounge chairs and recliners, and the latest digital projection. It also features a full-service bar and lounge perfect meeting up before the movie or a nightcap afterwards. Choose from fresh house favorites or heart-healthy choices on our American Grill Menu, and over 60 premium spirits at the bar. Friendly service is available at the push of a button for an unmatched cinema-dining experience.
Santa Susanna Railroad Depot
Restored 1903 train depot now holds a small museum and a working model train layout.
NO. 939 Twentieth Century Folk Art Environments (Thematic)
Located at Grandma Prisbrey’s Bottle Village, 4595 Cochran St, Simi Valley. This assemblage is one of California’s remarkable Twentieth Century Folk Art Environments. In 1956, Tressa Prisbrey, then nearly sixty years old, started building a fanciful ‘village’ of shrines, walkways, sculptures, and buildings from recycled items and discards from the local dump. She worked for 25 years creating one structure after another to house her collections.
The Mosaic Walkway is embedded with thousands of treasures—tiles, shells, doorknobs, irons, car ornaments, jewelry, dishware, scissors, guns, toys — everything imaginable that creates a timestamp of 1950s post-consumer waste. Bottle Village originally had more than 13 buildings and 20 sculptures. Although severely damaged during the 1994 Northridge earthquake, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1996.
NO. 979 Rancho Simi
This is the site of the headquarters of the Spanish Rancho San José de Nuestra Señora de Altagracia y Simí. The name derives from ‘Shimiji,’ the name of the Chumash village here before the Spanish. At 113,000 acres (460 km2), Rancho Simi was one of the state’s largest land grants. Two prominent Spanish and Mexican family names are connected with the Rancho: Santiago Pico who first received the grant, and José de la Guerra who purchased the Rancho in 1842. Two rooms of original adobe remain, part of the Strathearn home built in The Strathearn Historical Park and Museum, an open-air park that is owned and maintained by the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District, and is operated jointly with the Simi Valley Historical Society.
The house is maintained as a historic house museum with typical period furniture and household displays. In addition to the Simi Adobe-Strathearn House, there are various historic buildings and structures that have been moved from their original site to the park, including the 1924 children’s playhouse with toys, the 1902 St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, the original Simi Valley Library and two barns with farm tools and equipment. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places: NPS-78000825. Location: Robert P Strathearn Historical Park, 137 Strathearn Place, Simi Valley.
Simi Valley was once a popular location for many Western movies that were once all the rage, and some movie scenes were shot in the valley. The City of Simi Valley welcomes filmmakers to take advantage of the City’s unique geography and close proximity to Los Angeles. The City welcomes dozens and dozens of productions every year and has earned a strong reputation for fast, friendly service and Across Simi Valleypermitting policies.
The former Corriganville Movie Ranch and its Fort Apache film set, now Corriganville Regional Park, is the Santa Susana Knolls. Many television series were filmed there during the 1950s, such as Richard Carlson’s Mackenzie’s Raiders though that program was set at the former Fort Clark near Brackettville in southwestern Texas. Other areas of filming includes Big Sky Ranch, where the Little House on the Prairie was filmed, Poltergeist was filmed on Roxbury Street, and Welcome Danger (1929) and numerous others in Santa Susana.
Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District
The Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District is a separate government agency from the City of Simi Valley. Park facilities in Simi Valley are operated by the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District. This included a total of fifty parks, where some are urban city-parks, while others are public open space or multi-purpose trail systems. The district has an inventory of 5,600 acres of public owned land, including hundreds of acres of land in the Simi Hills.
Several hundred years of Simi Valley history has been preserved at the Strathearn Historical Park and Museum, and guided tours are available. Railroad enthusiasts can tour a depot built in 1903 with historic exhibits and miniature train displays. The Park District also operates two equestrian centers, two swimming pools, two golf courses, and numerous sports and other recreation amenities. In addition to the many facilities available for public enjoyment, the Park District offers hundreds of diverse recreation programs and large community events such as concerts, arts and crafts fairs and outdoor movies.
The purpose of these areas are to preserve the native landscape, as well as function as a wildlife corridor that protects the natural habitat for wildlife and flora. The city also boasts six golf courses and the Kanan Ranch home development has nature trails for hikers, bicyclists and equestrians to enjoy. Two collegiate baseball teams: The Simi Valley Senators and the California Oaks of the California Collegiate League in Thousand Oaks, provide sports action to local fans.
To the east, Rocky Peak has a trail system for Mountain Biking, Hiking and Equestrian activities. The trail is accessed just off the 118 freeway at Kuehner Road, Yosemite Road (about 1-mile North) or Rocky Peak. Trailheads are: The Hummingbird Trail, Rocky Peak Fire Road or The Chumash Trail. These trails are not recommended for beginners, due to fairly steep grades and some technical sections on the trail.
To the southwest, numerous trails are accessible for Mountain Biking, Hiking and Equestrian activities. The main access point for Wood Ranch Open Space is at the intersection of Wood Ranch Parkway and Long Canyon Parkway, but can also be accessed through nearby Challenger Park or from trailheads in Thousand Oaks. The trail system travels as far west as highway 23, as far east as the Rocketdyne facility and connects to the Lang Ranch trail system (Westlake Village) and Chesebro trail system, which begins in Agoura Hills.
Simi Peak (the highest peak in Simi Valley) is accessible from this trail system via China Flats in the Chesebro trail system. Ahmundson Ranch connects to this trail system, again via the Chesebro trail system. Bridlepath, a private trail system also connects to the main fire road. The west end of Simi Valley is also home to the 150-acre Tierra Rejada Park, which offers hiking trails to nearby Moorpark, CA.
Santa Susana Field Laboratory
The 2,848 acres (1,153 ha) Santa Susana Field Laboratory located in the Simi Hills, was used for the development of pioneering nuclear reactors and rocket engines beginning in 1948. The site was operated by Atomics International and Rocketdyne (originally both divisions of the North American Aviation company). The Rocketdyne division developed a variety of liquid rocket engines. Rocket engine tests were frequently heard in Simi Valley.
The Atomics International division of North American Aviation designed, built and operated the Sodium Reactor Experiment, the first United States nuclear reactor to supply electricity to a public power system. The Boiling Water Reactors (BORAX) experiments were five reactors built between 1953 and 1964 by Argonne National Laboratory. They proved that the boiling water concept was a feasible design for an electricity-producing nuclear reactor.
The Santa Susana Field Laboratory includes sites identified as historic by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and by the American Nuclear Society. The National Register of Historic Places listed Burro Flats Painted Cave is located within the Santa Susana Field Laboratory, on a portion of the site owned by the U.S. Government. The drawings within the cave have been termed “the best preserved Indian pictograph in Southern California.”
Simi Valley enjoys dozens of carnivals, fairs, car shows, art shows, fundraising walks/runs, concerts, and other cultural events each year.
Round-up Rockin’ Country Music Extravaganza takes place in Simi Valley and features top country performers, line dancing, and craft and food vendors. It’s a “Rockin” good time!
Lace up and hit the road for a good cause. For more than 10 years, Simi Valley athletes have gathered for the Gator Run 10K, 5K, and Kids 1 Mile. Proceeds benefit the Rotary Club of Simi Sunset.
Simi Valley Street Fair
More 370 vendors fill Simi Valley’s streets in May with food, crafts, games, and prizes. The Simi Valley Street Fair is free to the public and features live music.
4th of July in Simi Valley
The Simi Valley 4th of July Fireworks Extravaganza, presented by the Simi Valley Days Foundation, has been a local tradition for more than 45 years. Celebrate throughout the day at Rancho Santa Susana Community Park and cap-off the evening with an incredible fireworks show.
Simi Valley Days Parade & Carnival
A Simi Valley tradition for more than 86 years, join us for Simi Valley Days in September. This four-day celebration features a parade followed by a carnival at Simi Valley Town Center. With live music, rides, games, food, and beer and wine, Simi Valley Days is perfect for the whole family.
Simi Valley Dream Cuisine
Arrive hungry to this October food and wine festival, featuring gourmet selections from the best restaurants in the Simi Valley area. Enjoy local food, baked goods and desserts, and beer and wine. The real dreams will come true while dancing to the music of Ronny & The Classics, providing live beloved oldies and radio favorites from across four decades. In addition to popular sounds of the past there will be a present day silent auction to take part in.
Fall Harvest Festival
Visit Underwood Family Farms during October for a full month of fall celebration. Pick a pumpkin from the patch and enjoy ongoing events throughout the month, including live music, games and activities for kids, and vintage tractors. Humans aren’t the only ones getting in on the fun as the festival includes pig races and our animal show! However the food, including kettle corn, pumpkin pie, roasted corn on the cob and fish tacos, is best eaten only by people
Holiday Tree Lighting
Start the Christmas season and get into the holiday spirit at Simi Valley’s tree lighting, complete with a visit from Santa, amazing lights, and music.