Located just 37 miles northwest of Downtown Los Angeles, Simi Valley is the third largest city in Ventura County. It has an estimated population of 126,788 residents, and covers over 42 square miles. There are plenty of attractions in the area, and it is considered to be a family-friendly destination.
A great attraction to see is the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. There are also several other museums, including the Strathearn Historical Park & Museum, the Pioneer Memory Garden, and the Wood Ranch Barns. The library features a collection of historical items, and there are docent-led tours of the museum.
The first inhabitants of Simi Valley were the Chumash Native Americans. They occupied the area for thousands of years. They began to harvest local marshland plants around 2,000 years ago. They developed a precious stone money system, which aided them in adapting to climate changes. They were able to remain on their land until the late 1700s. In 1877, Juan De la Guerra reported planting walnuts on a 14,400-acre portion of the original rancho. The land was free of rust disease, and its climate was ideal for farming.
Throughout the 1950s, agriculture was the dominant industry in Simi Valley. Most homes were ranch houses, and grazing cattle was more common than shopping malls. The area also had a strong Latino community. Many Latino families worked for white ranchers.
During the 1960s, the area’s first major residential development began. In the late 1860s and early 1870s, the earliest Anglo American ranchers arrived in the area. Charles Emerson Hoar purchased Hummingbird’s Nest Ranch in the northeastern corner of Simi Valley. He was named the “first American farmer” by early Simi historian Janet Scott Cameron.
Several movies have been filmed in the Simi Valley area. One of the more recent films to feature the area was Postcards from Buster. The movie featured indoor skateboarding culture in the area, and there were numerous scenes filmed in the Skatelab, an indoor skatepark. Another notable movie that filmed in the area was The Doberman Gang. The movie features the Bank of Simi as the location for a robbery.
Aside from the movie locations, Simi Valley is known for the historical landmarks. It was once home to a third Chumash village. There is also the Santa Susana Pass, which was once home to Porter Ranch. There is also a recreation park called Big Sky Park in the area. The area is also home to several golf courses. In addition, there are several museums and attractions, and it is easy to spend the day exploring the area.
The official tree of the city is the Ta’apu. It is believed to have inspired the name of the town. Other historical structures include the Simi Community Methodist Episcopal Church, which was originally built in the mid-1920s. It was renovated in 1981 and has retained its past elegance. Other famous landmarks in the Simi Valley area include the Brandeis-Bardin Institute’s House of the Book, and the original Power Ranger Power Chamber.