15 THINGS TO DO AROUND VANDENBERG AFB (NOW VANDENBERG SFB)
By Will Borger
IntroductionAfter you settle into your role at Vandenberg AFB (now Vandenberg Space Force Base), you’ll probably want to find some things to do in and around the base. Finding your new favorite places can take time, so we’ve made a list to help get you started. Finding new places to spend quality time with family and friends is crucial to feeling comfortable at a new base. Explore these options and find what works best for you and your family. Don’t be afraid to ask friends and neighbors for their recommendations too! Know what you are looking for? Click the number(s) to go right to what you go: (1-2) Golfing (3-4) Bowling (5-6) Movies (7-10) Parks, Rivers, and Lakes (11-12) Gyms (13-15) Museums
Suggested Read: Vandenberg AFB Welcome Center (Now Vandenberg Space Force Base)
Things to Do Near Vandenberg Air Force Base
Vandenberg AFB (Now Space Force Base) Golf Courses
1. The Mission Club4300 Clubhouse Rd. Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 733-3535 The Mission Club is a private club that requires membership, but it offers quite a bit. In addition to the 18-hole course, there’s also a golf shop that stocks lots of gear. The course also hosts tournaments.
2. La Purisima Golf Course3455 State Highway 246 Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 735-8395 La Purisima is a critically acclaimed, 18-hole course that offers quite a bit in addition to the course: a restaurant called The Grille, a practice facility featuring bunkers and chipping and putting greens, and a golf shop. The course also offers lessons.
VAFB (Now Space Force Base) Bowling Alley
3. Rancho Bowl10366 Community Loop Vandenberg AFB, CA 93437
Phone:1 (805) 925-2405 Rancho Bowl offers 32 modern lanes and hosts leagues, but that’s not all the long-running alley has to offer. It also hosts an arcade room, bar and restaurant.
4. Surf Lanes Bowling128 E. Donovan Rd. Santa Maria, CA 93454
Phone:1 (805) 606-3209 Surf Lanes Bowling is a 16-lane bowling alley that also offers an arcade room and the Surf Lane Grill, which is known for its Wednesday BBQ specials. Surf Lanes also hosts tournaments and leagues and offers lessons.
Vandenberg AFB (Now Space Force Base) Movie Theater
5. Park Plaza Theatre515 McMurray Rd. Buellton, CA 93427
Phone:1 (805) 688-7434 Parks Plaza Theater is relatively inexpensive and offers tons of tasty treats at the snack bar. The theater is also praised for being clean and for its friendly staff.
6. Hi-Way Drive in Theater3170 Santa Maria Way Santa Maria, CA 93455
Phone:1 (805) 937-9715 Hi-Way Drive In Theater always offers double features, has a snack bar with some excellent nachos and is relatively inexpensive. Just be sure to bring your own speakers.
Parks, Rivers, and Lakes
7. Ocean Beach Park6851 Ocean Park Rd. Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 737-7775 Ocean Beach Park sports beach access, picnic tables and a playground, in addition to being a great spot for bird-watching and nature photography.
8. Beattie ParkE. Olive Avenue and S. Fifth Street Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 875-8100 A sprawling 50-acre park, Beattie Park features a large group picnic area, a children's playground, two lighted basketball courts, a multi-purpose soccer/football field, individual picnic areas, an urban forest preserve with a winding fitness trail and a "Lookout Point" at the highest point in the park.
9. Riverbend ParkMcLaughlin Rd. Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 875-8100 Riverbend Park is a beautiful location with quite a bit to do. Visitors can camp, hike, fish and barbecue. There are also two playgrounds for kids.
10. Waller Park3107 Orcutt Rd. Santa Maria, CA 93455
Phone:1 (805) 934-6123 Waller Park is a beautifully maintained 150-plus acre park just south of Santa Maria. In addition to the ponds and woodlands, visitors can make use of disc golf, volleyball and basketball courts, as well as trails for hiking, biking and jogging. There are also several playgrounds.
Vandenberg AFB (Now Space Force Base) Gym
11. VAFB Group FitnessVandenberg Space Force Base 9005 Washington Ave. Lompoc, CA 93437
Phone:1 (805) 606-3832 VAFB Group Fitness is a smaller gym, but it has a lot of machines, a cardio area, weights and an area for stretching. It also has a basketball court and locker rooms with showers and saunas.
12. The Compound Training Facility432 Commerce Ct., Ste. F Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 291-2854 A 24-hour gym with excellent ownership, the Compound Training Facility offers powerlifting equipment, bodybuilding, CrossFit, boxing or sport-specific training. There’s also a ton of cardio equipment, a ping-pong table and an arcade area.
Vandenberg AFB (Now Space Force Base) Museums
13. Santa Maria Museum of Flight3015 Airpark Dr. Santa Maria, CA 93455
Phone:1 (805) 922-8758 The Santa Maria Museum of Flight has a little bit of everything, whether you’re interested in Hollywood models and props or the history of women in aviation. There are two hangars filled with planes and plenty of memorabilia from the earliest days of flight up through the space program, so there’s plenty to look at.
14. La Purisima Mission Historic State Park2295 Purisima Rd. Lompoc, CA 93436
Phone:1 (805) 733-3713 La Purisima Mission is part museum, part historic state park dedicated to preserving and educating visitors on the purpose of the original mission. The mission offers free guided tours, but there are also hiking and biking trails and historic buildings to explore.
15. Dune Museum1065 Guadalupe St. Guadalupe, CA 93434
Phone:1 (805) 343-2455 The Dune Center is a natural history museum focused on Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes and the animals that live there. It also houses artifacts excavated from the 1923 Cecil B. DeMille film “The Ten Commandments,” which was filmed in the dunes.
ConclusionVandenberg Space Force Base and the surrounding Lompoc area may be small, but it has many offerings to keep you and your family busy. Explore your options, and don’t be afraid to try out new things. Ask your friends and neighbors for recommendations, especially when it comes to local attractions and outdoor parks and events. This list is just a taste of the offerings on and near the base. We hope it gives you a place to start as you explore the area.
The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.
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