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Non-Profit Group Continues Efforts To Restore Historic Movie Set Destroyed By South Coast Wildfire

The Western Town set area of the Paramount Ranch after the November, 2018 Woolsey Fire

A small church building sits on a ranch in the hills southwest of Agoura.  It’s what's left of a historic movie set where hundreds of movies and TV shows were shot over the years in what’s now the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.

It was “Western Town” at the Paramount Ranch.  Virtually all of the other buildings which were here for decades, and used for shows like “The Cisco Kid” and “Weeds” are gone.  The 2018 Woolsey brush fire destroyed most of the ranch.  

A non-profit group which supports the National Recreation Area’s programs, services, and research is helping to rebuild it.

Sarah Horner is President of the Board for the Santa Monica Mountains Fund, which has pledged to raise $1.5 million dollars for the restoration project.  The idea is to build a new working set, so people can get the rare opportunity to see Hollywood in action.

The fund supports a number of projects in the National Recreation Area, including education projects for kids and work experience programs for inner city teens.  The fund also helps finance things like mountain lion research, paying for radio tracking collars used by scientists.

Charlotte Parry is Executive Director of the Santa Monica Mountain Fund.  Parry says they are showcasing the non-profit’s efforts this week.  Their annual summer showcase event is online this year, because of the coronavirus crisis.

The Fund is raising money for its efforts with an online auction, featuring a guitar from a member of the rock band the "Eagles" signed by five members of the group.

You can visit the ranch and hike on some nearby trails, but the church building is now the sole surviving structure from the set area.

You can find a link to the Santa Monica Mountains Fund Summer Celebration at

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.