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A happy couple out on a bike ride in the desert


Things to do in Town and Nearby

Surrounded by four mountain ranges, an adjacent to the China Lake Naval Weapons Center, the city of Ridgecrest offers all kinds of things to experience in town and in the surrounding region. Below are some of our favorite things to experience.  

A stone with petroglyphs on it

In Town Activities

A group of men practicing their golf game on a driving range

China Lake Golf Course

Golf Course, Pro Shop & Restaurant

The 18-hole "China Lake" course at the China Lake Golf Course facility in Ridgecrest, California features 6,832 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 72. The course rating is 72.6 and it has a slope rating of 124 on Bermuda grass.

Live Theatre 

Community Theatre 

The Ridgecrest Musical Enrichment Society (RMES) is known for their high quality musical theatre productions. The Community Light Opera and Theatre Association (CLOTA) was formed in 1964 and specializes in producing straight plays.

A group of actors singing in a production of Joseph and the amazing technicolor dreamcoat
An exterior wall of the Maturagno Museum with a metal petroglyph sculpture in front of it

The Maturango Museum

Galleries, Gift Shop & Tours

In addition to the exhibit galleries, which feature the natural and cultural history of the Upper Mojave Desert, the Museum sponsors many programs and tours, including tours to the world-famous Coso petroglyphs.

China Lake Museum 

Museum, Gift Shop

A large variety of present and past, US Navy aircraft, weapons and technology are available at the Museum for close up viewing. In addition, the Museum has a well stocked gift shop with books, videos, clothing, and other paraphernalia relative to the museum's exhibits.

A Hornet fighter jet displayed outside the China Lake Museum.
Two men in medieval attire wielding swords and shields.

In Town Events

A carousel at night that is set up in front of a Ferris wheel

Desert Empire Fair

The largest annual event in the area, the fair features rides, arts/crafts exhibits, livestock shows, local and professional entertainment, carnival, and commercial vendors.

A native American man playing a wooden flute.

Petroglyph Festival

The weekend-long festival celebrates the Coso people, and specifically the 10,000-year-old petroglyphs of the Coso Rock Art District. Enjoy Native American live music and dancers, as well as a crafts-and-food street fair.

Demolition Derby

Sponsored cars crash into each other to the cheer and delight of fans in the stands as drivers compete to be the last one moving. This event draws more than 2,000 people annually, packing the stands to the point of standing room only.

A man holding a checkered flag and trophy while standing on a car.

Summer Pique Nique

The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), an international organization devoted to research/re-creation of pre-17th-century skills/arts/combat/culture/history, hosts an annual picnic where the barony draws together for a day of feasting and fighting.

A seated man and woman wearing royal medieval attire.
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