adopt 470x300See the extensive projects the MVCC has done to improve our community’s elementary schools.


Looking to give back to the community, the Midtown Ventura Community Council created the Adopt-a-School program. The concept is to do a project at each public school in Midtown Ventura.

Our Adopt-A-School project at Loma Vista Elementary School is in full swing and set to finish this fall.

The school project this year took on even bigger dimensions thanks to all the volunteers and organizations that offered to assist.

LomaVista sideJPGA bio-swale is being installed on the side of the main office at Loma Vista School.To recap, the iconic 90-foot high pine tree right in front of Loma Vista School had fungus and beetles and had to be removed for safety. The tree was really the main focal point of the school and the kids really missed it. Because so many volunteers stepped up to help we decided to do a comprehensive redesign around the front of the school installing an all Coastal California Native Garden. This would use much less water and integrate better with our environment. We also are diverting rain runoff from the roofs.

Local landscape architect Brian Brodersen, who designed the Will Rogers project, has created a beautiful plan for Loma Vista. Jesse Doty, Senior Project Manager for Clark Construction Group working on the new VCMC building has volunteered along with some of his workers as well as donating heavy equipment which enabled us to install a larger project that would have been possible otherwise.

Larry Mosler owner of the Ojai Quarry donated $2,000 worth of rock for the garden.

The Ocean Friendly Garden, (OFG), Committee of the local Surfrider Ventura County ChapterLomaVista workVolunteers placed large boulders to create the main bio-swale at the school. is again donating $1,000 as they did last year, using a huge chunk of their funds to help us.

Ventura Water is donating $500 to help buy the native plants.

Steve Holt and Bill Whitley, parents of children at Loma Vista used heavy equipment on our last workday, June 14, to dig the swales for the dry creek beds and position the boulders around the swales.

Ventura Rental Center has donated equipment again as they did last year.

MVCC Board members are again contributing money to help with the renovation.

It really does take a village and in that regard we are asking for anyone who would like to donate money and/or in kind donations and as important volunteer some time to help with this endeavor which will inspire our youth and the community. Our projected itemized expenses for this project is about $9,000. Our MVCC Board has dedicated $5,000 and with OFG committee and Ventura Water we still could use some help with funding.

This completed project will be a wonderful colorful example of what a native garden can look like while saving water and being environmentally minded.

California Coastal Native Garden at Loma Vista SchoolA rendering of the California Coastal Native Garden at Loma Vista School.

Blanche Reynolds

Rainbow Bridge was built in the 1990s and showing its age. The MVCC in 2012 led the restoration effort (we had plenty of help) on the playground at Blanche Reynolds School.Rainbow Bridge Park in VenturaThe restored Rainbow Bridge Park.

Thanks to residents and the business community, we were able to repaint the play structures, replace damaged or broken boards and refresh the ground cover. It was a fabulous beautiful for the MVCC’s first Adopt-A-School project.

Mark Draganchuk, owner of Draganchuk Alarms, and Jeff Zimmerman of Z Dwellings, general contractor both gave money, time and material to the refurbishing. Gene West, a wooden toymaker, rebuilt the large chimes at the playground. Betsy Quinn, a local artist, restored the five Chumash wooden icons that “cross” the rainbow. Dan Long Painting donated his labor.

Will Rogers

Creating an Ocean Friendly Garden on the Ocean Avenue side of the Blanche Reynolds campus was our project in 2013.

The Midtown Ventura Community Council led the charge in designing, removing 80 feet of blacktop and building the sprawling garden that included two large bio-swales (dry creek beds) to keep rainwater out of the storm drains.Bioswale in actionThe bioswale during a major rainstorm.

Teacher Kris Guzman's for her tireless efforts to "green" the school with the help of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Schoolyard Wildlife Habitat grant and Will Rogers' students. Without the support of the Ventura Unified School District Board of Education, administrators and maintenance supervisors, the project would not have been possible.

Landscape architect Brian Brodersen, who redesigned the existing garden turning it into a Surfrider Ocean Friendly Garden plus designed a 100-foot long bio-swale to capture all the storm water that previously ran into the street.

Under the leadership of PTA President Betsy Manninen, the Will Rogers PTA donated $1,000 and volunteered many hours before and during the project to see it through its completion. Surfrider Foundation's Ocean Friendly Garden committee contributed $1,000 as well the countless hours of many volunteers and valuable support.

Ocean Friendly Garden at Will RodgersThe completed Ocean Friendly Garden at Will Rodgers School.Ted Cook, the owner of Ventura Rental Center, gave substantial discounts (and some free use) of heavy equipment. The city of Ventura donated hand tools and mulch, and Ventura Water provided assistance. Larry Mosler, owner of Ojai Quarry, donated $2,000 of rock to enhance the areas. E.J.Harrison and Agromin donated about a $1,000 in services.

Jesus Murillo of M&M Landscapes rototilled the garden area in preparation for the retrofit. We were also joined by volunteers from the G3 and Green Gardens Group. Green builder Jeff Zimmerman, owner of Z Dwellings Construction, donated his time along with equipment operator Terry Leach, who used the mini-X trencher and Bobcat.
MVCC board members donated time and money for the projects and maintained the vision to see it to fruition.

Adopt a School
See the extensive projects the MVCC has done to improve our community’s elementary schools.