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San Buenaventura Conservancy

P.O Box 23263

Ventura, CA 93002

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"Historic Preservation is about managing change, not preventing it."
Linda Dishman, L.A. Conservancy, quoted from L.A. Times, 07.10.10

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(*- please note: due to potential copyright infringement, published articles are not reprinted here but the date and publication name may be included for your benefit. We welcome unpublished articles for inclusion here. Most articles can be found in the Ventura County Star.)



A Man With A Mission - VC Reporter

Tearing Down the Gates of the Mission - VC Star


San Buenaventura Conservancy, the Gould Family, and Real Estate Agents Join Forces with Local Vendor and Select Non-Profits to find the “right” buyer for Ventura’s only Greene & Greene  

Dateline: Thursday, August 3rd, 2006 at 10:00 AM members and docents of the San Buenaventura Conservancy (SBC) will welcome the truckloads of furniture from For Your Home, Ventura’s renowned retailer for period inspired furniture, to the Henry Mather Greene designed Gould House in order to put the home’s “best foot forward” in the search for the right buyer.  The home will also be offered to select non-profits for fundraising and be featured as part of a rare, out-of-town tour during the 2006 Craftsman Weekend, hosted by Pasadena Heritage. 

Historically Correct House Dressing 

With the real estate market “pacing off”, as reported in the Star on July 26th, house dressing (where a home on the market is decorated in order for buyers to see its potential) has become increasingly popular.  However, the Gould House is not the average home.  Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005, it is the only Greene & Greene on the list that is recognized by scholars as a rare specimen of Henry Mather Greene’s artistic talent.  Currently listed with Remax Gold Coast Realtors in Ventura County and Mossler & Doe, Inc. in Los Angeles, the house has been on the market for the last several months, with interest being constant but without commitments.  So the San Buenaventura Conservancy approached the Gould family and the listing agents about exploring some historically creative ideas to increase its exposure beyond traditional methods of multiple listings and advertising.

 “People, lots of people, who qualify financially, need to actually see the house and they need to see it through the eyes of its greatest potential”, says Cynthia Thompson, SBC President.  Most of the original furniture has gone to individual Gould family members.  Thompson approached For Your Home, who had loaned period correct reproduction furniture to the home during Ventura Architecture Weekend in 2004, to see if they would be willing to do so again for the duration of the selling period.   “It is good for us and its good for the Gould House” was the response from Kevin Seelof, General Manager and Greg Bouffard, Sales Manager.  A unique feature of this partnership is that all of the furniture from the store in the house will be for sale as buyers come through, with replacement pieces available to the home. 

Partnering with Select Non-Profits

 Another historic approach to broadening exposure is that the house will be offered free of charge to select non-profits for fund raising purposes during the sale period.  “We’re starting with Ventura first, of course,” said Thompson. “As an example, the Ventura County Museum of History & Art has capital campaign needs for the construction of the new museum and the Farm Implements Museum.   This is a way to reach out to a financially qualified demographic while serving the needs of our cultural community” she explained.  The Conservancy will also be exploring similar arrangements with the Gamble House in Pasadena and other select non-profits in Santa Barbara and Montecito.

 Pasadena Comes Calling

 Pasadena Heritage, who is also host to the internationally attended Craftsman Weekend, annually presented in October, holds the conservation easement on the Gould House.  In an unusual move for the event, they will be offering a bus tour, 60 plus miles outside Pasadena, called The Arts and Crafts Movement In Ventura featuring the Gould House with stops at 71 Palm restaurant, The Hartman House, the Valentine-Siodmak House, and the Pierpont Inn on Friday, October 20th from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm at $100 per ticket.

 “The SBC is very excited about Pasadena’s interest in San Buenaventura’s architectural legacy.  This is confirmation that Ventura’s historic built environment is not just a sentimental enthusiasm of a few, but also, an actual engine for economic development through cultural tourism.  If our authenticity can encourage people to spend $100 to see our town, it is an opportunity we need to capitalize on.  Pasadena’s international identity is based upon its architecture.  This partnership and recognition with Pasadena is something that should be nurtured,” concludes Cynthia Thompson.

 For further information about the Gould House, contact Jerry Brener/Remax Gold Coast Realtors at 805.794.7323 (in Ventura County), Crosby Doe of Mossler & Doe, Inc. at  310. 275. 2222 (Los Angeles County) or visit the Gould website at  Information about Pasadena Heritage’s Craftsman Weekend is available at or by contacting Teri Geis at 626.441.6333.  For Your Home can be reached at 805.641.1919. For any additional information about this press release, contact Authentic Resources Team at 805.815.8969


October 6, 2005


ArtWalk, Ventura Architecture Weekend & Ventura Music Festival Team Up

The City of Ventura has partnered with the San Buenaventura Conservancy, which produces Ventura Architecture Weekend, and the Ventura Music Festival during the weekend of the Harvest ArtWalk, November 4 to 6, 2005 to create a jam-packed weekend full of art, architecture and music that is being billed as VenturAuthentiCity.  

The weekend will kick-off on Friday, November 4th from 5:00 to 9:00 pm with the new Upstairs-Downtown Tour as part of Ventura Architecture Weekend. If you’ve ever wondered what’s happening above the Main Street stores, this tour is for you. Along the route of this self-guided tour, many businesses will open their doors to their upstairs areas that feature examples of contemporary offices housed in historic buildings as adaptive reuse. Included will be the historic office of Erle Stanley Gardner who wrote the Perry Mason novels. A reception will be held that evening at the Livery, sponsored by Harold Powell (REMAX), Gold Coast Home Loans, Aliso Escrow and Fidelity Title Companies. Jazz and period music will be provided by the ever-ebullient Jim Calire Trio.

On Saturday, November 5th, from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, check out the Downtown Home Tours for architecture of the 1890s to the 1920s. Also downtown from 3 pm to 9 pm, stroll through the shops and galleries to view over 80 participating exhibits and over 20 live performances during Harvest ArtWalk. By 8:00 pm, if your feet are tired but your heart craves music, sit down and tap the tired toes for an evening of swing blues music with Kid Ramos and his Blues Band, presented by the Ventura Music Festival.

On Sunday, November 6th, the Midtown Home Tours will continue to explore Ventura’s architectural treasures through its Spanish architecture of the 1920s-30s and will include the volunteer, community rehabilitated Washington School; also from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Both Saturday and Sunday (Nov 5th & 6th) the Dudley House (an interpretive house museum of Victorian agricultural life in 19th Century Ventura) will be part of the tours.

As always, ArtWalk is a free event, but tickets are required for the architecture tours and the blues concert. Ticket prices range from $22 to $32/advance and $27 to $37/at door per individual event.

For information or tickets for the home tours or concert, call the Ventura Visitors Bureau at 805.648.2075 or 800.483.6214; or you can purchase advance tickets online at

For more information on ArtWalks contact Robin Elander, 805.658.4760, or

Basic description:

A 3-day city-wide event highlighting the history, architecture, art, and music of the City of Ventura.

August 5,2005

Gould House makes National Register of Historic Places

April 28, 2005

Terra Cotta Restoration Tour at City Hall
Non-Profit Seminars at Seaside Park

April 19, 2005

Ventura City Council increases fines for destruction of landmarks

September 24, 2004

Ventura to Host Three-Day Stroll Through History


The Pierpont Inn’s rich history and Ventura roots have made a powerful impact in the community. The Inn’s decades of historic architecture and preservation has spurred a citywide restoration movement. This year the Inn will serve as the main staging ground for Ventura Architecture Weekend including historic home tours and the popular Period Exposition.

In November 2003, the first annual Ventura Architecture Weekend launched with resounding success, heightening the awareness and pride of the City of San Buenaventura, celebrating its unique architectural and cultural landscape. Nearly one thousand people attended the three-day event from places as far away as Hawaii and Montana. This year’s event is expected to be even more successful with the addition of home tours in Ventura’s oldest and most historic neighborhood, Westside Community.

Following in the preservation footsteps of cities like Pasadena, California and Savannah, Georgia; Ventura and The Pierpont Inn are taking bold strides to put Ventura on the map and in the history books. Ventura’s energy and focus on preservation created a new powerful force for Preservation, Tourism and Revenue. As a result of the first annual Ventura Architecture Weekend in 2003, the San Buenaventura Conservancy has been born. Its mission is education through advocacy and this year the newly formed non-profit organization will invite the public to take a stroll through history as the host of Ventura Architecture Weekend 2004

Dateline: November 12-14, 2004
The success of Ventura Architecture Weekend is largely based upon the involvement and support of community organizations (Midtown, Downtown, and Westside community councils, The Ventura Visitors & Convention Bureau, the Ventura Chamber of Commerce, The Ventura County Arts Council). Once again these entities are pooling their efforts to add the element of historic identity in crafting Ventura as destination city for cultural tourism. “I am very excited about the recent citizen involvement in our preservation efforts, and I credit Ventura Architecture Weekend with playing an important role in heightening community awareness of our historic architectural treasures,” says Tracy Long, Chair City of San Buenaventura Historic Preservation Committee.

This year, it is ‘ALL POINTS PIERPONT’ as the The Pierpont Inn & Racquet Club will be the ‘historic hub’ for weekend activities. The restoration of The Pierpont Inn (a craftsman Bungalow hotel built in 1910 and current member of Historic Hotels of America) that began in 1999 is credited with raising public preservation awareness. So, it is only fitting that all home tours will begin at The Pierpont and the Inn will once again be the location for the Period Exposition.

The three-day Ventura Architecture Weekend takes place Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, November 12th-14th, 2004. The Weekend starts with an elegant Gala at Ventura’s Beaux Arts City Hall, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. One of the evening’s highlights is the displays and living history re-enactments of a half dozen of Ventura historic families. The Home Tours are on Saturday and Sunday from 11-4 with Saturday showcasing the early (1890s to 1920s) architectural development of the Westside and Downtown areas; and Sunday featuring the eastward movement of the town in the Midtown (1920s-1930s). Concurrently, the Period Exposition at The Pierpont Inn will feature restoration vendor exhibitors like the California Lantern Company, Crown City Hardware, and The Antique Stove Shop. Additionally, lectures and workshops will be given throughout the day with a popular return of national historic design celebrity, Jane Powell, author of Bungalow Bathrooms and Bungalow Kitchens sharing her expertise.

A special feature of this year’s home tours is the “Work In Progress” house. Homeowner and textile designer for Patagonia, Lynne Siodmak, recently purchased the only Oriental Craftsman in Ventura. Known as the 1915 Harry Valentine House and only owned by two prior owners, the grand structure needed lots of TLC. Home tour attendees will be able to witness ‘restoration in process’ as Lynne’s dedication to environmentally sensitive reuse of original materials will be explained as part of the tour.

Tickets to the events will be on sale in early September, 2004 and can be purchased through the Ventura Visitors and Convention Bureau (800.333.2989) or online at the San Buenaventura Conservancy website at Special courtesy discounts and privileges for room reservations are available at The Pierpont Inn & Racquet Club. Call Vicki Dussaigne at 805.653.6144 ext. 180 or Visit the Pierpont website at

For more information please contact:
Jennifer Curtis, CMS Info Services 805.983.3495
Cynthia Thompson of The Pierpont Inn 805.653.6144 ext. 153
The Ventura Visitors and Convention Bureau at 800.333.2989 e-mail

October 1, 2004

National Preservation Celebrities

Join the 2004

Ventura Architecture Weekend Workshops

The Pierpont’s Period Exposition offers preservation and restoration advice from top professionals in the field

Nationally recognized preservation experts will conduct lecture workshops as part of the 2004 Ventura Architecture Weekend at the Period Exposition held at the The Pierpont Inn. Last year’s event spawned a grass roots preservation movement.  Responding to the demand for ways in which to promote history, top professionals in the field have agreed to lend their expertise to a very interested public.  

Christy Johnson Mc Avoy, Managing Principal of her company, Historic Resources Group, is an official advisor to the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Washington, DC.  She is also a co-founder of the USC School of Architecture Historic Preservation Program. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles Conservancy, and is a past president of the California Preservation Foundation. Her knowledge of historic preservation standards, code compliance, historic architecture, and creative development options enables she and her qualified staff to provide a wide range of consultant services. She is a real estate specialist in the application of financial incentives for historic preservation. Her company is currently responsible for the over-site of the restoration of the famed Gamble House in Pasadena, California.

Paul Duchshere, former Design Service Director for Bradbury & Bradbury Art Wallpapers, his expertise in the Arts & Crafts style grew from creating a line of Craftsman period wallpapers.  Since that time his special talents created a period interior design business located in San Francisco.  Long a proponent of historic preservation, Duchsherer’s knowledge and enthusiasm for design history has found further expression through lecturing, writing, and teaching courses in the field.  He gained national celebrity with the publication of his books, The Bungalow, Inside the Bunglow, Outside the Bungalow, Victorian Glory, and the eight mini-book series Bungalow Basics . He is very much in demand on the lecture circuit of preservation shows like Craftsman Weekend, Disney’s Arts & Crafts Show, the SOHO San Diego Show and the Grove Park Inn Arts & Crafts Show.

Jane Powell, a former clothing designer bought her first bungalow, a minor fixer upper and renovated it in a way that preserved its original features.  Several bungalows later, it had turned into a career and business called House Dressing.  She skyrocketed to fame when she published her experiences in the new best sellers Bungalow Kitchens and Bungalow Bathrooms.  Following these successes, she has now produced a total of six ‘top chart’ books, including the book Linoleum, which Amazon. Com January Magazine reviewer called “fun and fascinating”.  Her upcoming books are Bungalow Exterior Details and Bungalow, Ultimate Arts and Crafts Home. 

She, too, is a extremely celebrated popular speaker of the big national preservation shows.

Holley Gene Leffler specializes in accurate re-creations of vintage fashions, making history come alive for period re-enactors, museum docents, and historic home owners around the country.  She has dressed living history participants for six Ventura County museums. Conducting clothing and millenary classes at Costume College and the American Sewing Guild’s National Convention, her designs are in high demand for live theater and fashion shows.  A student of Jean Hunnisett, the international “Grand Dame” of historical fashion, Holley Gene’s attention to period correct details has been widely reported in the media.  She is the author of Re-Creating Vintage Clothing, a standard-bearer working text on the subject.  One of her larger successes was guiding over 150 volunteer participants in proper vintage attire, for last years’ Ventura Architecture Weekend, a feat she will repeat in 2004. 

The Period Exposition is part of the 3-day, city-wide event in Ventura that begins on Friday, November 12th, 2004 with the Gala Reception at City Hall.  Home Tours of historic architecture ranging from the 1890s to the 1930s will be available Saturday (13th) and Sunday (14th) from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM.  The Period Exposition will be open to the public from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM on both Saturday and Sunday.  For tickets, information, and published workshop/lecture schedules call the Ventura Visitors and Convention Bureau at 800.333.2989 or visit the San Buenaventura Conservancy website at