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Orange Street Fair

September 1st, 2016

 

One of the most anticipated fairs of the year spans the entire Labor Day weekend! Created in 1973, the Orange International Street Fair was founded in Old Town Orange and now features 15 ethnic “streets” complete with 42 food and drink booths. Non-profits man each booth, and the proceeds go directly back to them. There are handmade crafts and artwork showcasing local artisans.

Check out the community booth area to meet the non-profits and find out more about their missions. The commercial section is where you’ll find a slew of companies meeting and greeting attendees. There’s a street solely for kids with plenty of games and crafts. Plus, enjoy eight stages of entertainment with local performers playing an array of international sounds.

Orange You Glad You Came?

2016 is slated to be the biggest and best year yet. Vendors are still signing up, but a few include Casa Teresa on Asian Street, OC HS of the Arts on Australian Street, the Danish American Club on Danish Street, Orange Elks on English Street, and Orange Coast Gakuen on Ginza Street.

From September 2-4, indulge in everything this sprawling fair has to offer. Located at Plaza Square Park, parking can be limited, so be prepared to walk a few blocks to the festivities. Alcohol sales close at 9 p.m. nightly.

Best Thai in Anaheim

August 27th, 2016

 

An eclectic foodie scene near Anaheim means you’ll find some of the best Thai cuisine this side of Bangkok, just minutes from your hotel! Imperial Thai Cuisine offers dine-in, takeout and delivery of their special dishes like the Flipping Tofu sautéed a golden brown and served with a house-made sauce, Thai Chili Basil with assorted fresh veggies, Rad Na with broad rice noodles and Chinese broccoli with a beer oyster sauce, and the Crying Tiger with prime beef marinated in spices with a spicy lemon sauce.

Delicious vegan thai curry

Suthathip Thai Restaurant features classic appetizers like Thai Rangoon, Crispy Tofu, Curry Puffs, and Thai Fish Cakes to get started. The Spicy Eggplant entrée has eggplants and chilies in a spicy sauce with onion and basil, and the Cashew Nut dish has stir-fried cashews with onion and water chestnuts in a secret house sauce.

Thai Lovers Unite

The Win Thai Cuisine Restaurants are known for their Stuffed Chicken Wings with glass noodles and sweet/sour sauce, their Shrimp Tempura, deep fried with a variety of veggies, as well as their BBQ Chicken Satay served with peanut sauce. From their Beef Noodle Soup to the Chow Mein, it’s comfort food done right.

There’s the Spicy Thai Restaurant, Chaba Thai Noodle and Grill, and Thai & Laos Market to try, too!

 

Salsa Clubs in Anaheim

August 7th, 2016

 

The Anaheim region is a real salsa hot spot, and if you want to strap on your dancing shoes while staying along the golden coast, you have plenty of options. Bravo Nightclub is a top-ranked Latin dance haven with two floors, themed nights and live music most weekends. Open ‘til 2 a.m. with themes ranging from goth to gay night, there’s truly something for everyone here. Plus, the drink specials are always generous.

dance

At the Costa Rica Restaurant you’ll find not only authentic Tico fare, like the country’s famous purple rice, but also live Latin dancing and lessons on most weekend nights. Nothing pairs better with their Tacos Ticos than a little cumbia to end the night.

Salsa + Salsa

El Calor Mexican Restaurant and Nightclub is a popular nightclub with an impressive roster of DJs constantly spinning and shaking things up. It opens at 9 p.m. and boasts fantastic reviews from the salsa world. You’ll find classes as soon as the club opens, followed by dancing into the wee hours. All ability levels are welcome.

Tapas Flavors of Spain is another restaurant turned salsa nightclub, pairing flavorful Spanish tapas with some of the best music and intimate dancing in the city. Flamenco shows are featured on Friday and Saturday nights, and salsa lessons are free following the shows.

 

Comedy on the Terrace

August 1st, 2016

 

Head to the Terrace Cafe at 7 Washington Boulevard in nearby Marina del Rey for their brand new comedy show every Thursday night. There’s a fresh lineup weekly, featuring the country’s most in-demand headliners as well as local up-and-comers. The Beach Room is where you’ll find the action as well as an innovative menu from the Cafe. This free show has no drink or food item minimum—but the menu is so tempting, it’ll be tough to resist!

Stand-up comedy stage

Standup comedy is at its finest at this show, where the doors open at 8:30 p.m., and the laughs start at 9. Come early to get a great seat, and pore over the menu, ensuring your drinks and fare are in hand by the opening act. Views of the Pacific Ocean accompany your comedic dining experience, as well as a wide selection of Omaha steaks, Jakes’ Tuna Pokie, roasted orange duck, and too many pizza and salad combinations to detail!

The New Hot Spot

For years, the Terrace Cafe has been a favorite for celebrations from breakfast through late night. Open from 8 a.m. until 2 a.m., adding comedic relief to this non-stop dining favorite is a natural fit. Kids are welcome during the day, with a special children’s menu dishing up the most delectable options.

However, if you prefer something sweet to go with the sometimes saltiness of the headliners, the expansive dessert menu is sure to please. Try their 3 chocolate mousse cake, carrot cake with strawberry sauce, or traditional tiramisu. To keep up with their headliners, follow them on Facebook.

Take the Boudin Bakery Tour

July 31st, 2016

You fell in love with their bread bowls, but now it’s time to find out exactly how Boudin works their magic. Carb lovers unite as the Boudin bakers showcase their skills and let you in on a few of their secrets. Find out how to make better sourdough bread at home, the best pairings for bread bowls that you can whip up yourself, and what it takes to operate the most famous bakery in California, serving thousands of visitors a day!

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The Boudin tour is held at the Disney Adventureland bakery shop, and all ages are welcome. There is handicap accessibility. Free samples of the delicious San Francisco bread kick off the tour along with filmed narratives from Hollywood elites, like Rosie O’Donnell, explaining how the loaves are made.

No Half Baked Tour

Watch the bakers behind glass walls as they knead the dough into little loaves of heaven. Boudin has been delighting Californians for more than 150 years, depending on a secret recipe to whip up your favorite treats. Bakery rolls are available to purchase, as well as Boudin sandwiches, after the tour at Pacific Wharf Café.

What started as a small old world shop in the Bay Area on Dupont Street has exploded into a California phenomenon.

GamesBeat 2016

July 25th, 2016

 

Get your tickets now for the August 1 GamesBeat 2016, where more than 500 developers, entrepreneurs, executives and investors in the gaming world come together to check out the latest trends and releases. This is the eighth year for this massive festival, where the biggest and trendiest companies come together to check out where the gaming world is headed—including globally—and discover new growth opportunities. This year, the focus is on sustainability, how to best reach gamers, and the increasing global industry.

Microsoft Xbox One - Video Game Controller

The event takes place at Terranea Resort in nearby Rancho Palos Verdes. Spanning three days, from August 1-3, it’s where you’ll find and learn from the best gamers and leaders around. A one-day pass is $295, and the VIP pass is $595 with an advanced purchase. However, tickets are also available at the door on a first-come, first-served basis. Remember that if you’re in the industry, this may even be a write-off!

Game On

GamesBeat is hosted by VentureBeat, a tech media leader that covers “disruptive technology” and reminds us why it plays a big role in all of our lives. VentureBeat covers the latest tech and has a knack for bringing communities together at executive-level conferences. However, GamesBeat is their only games-only festival and conference, growing every year with gamers coming from all corners of the world.

 

Keep Cool at Irvine Inline Skate

July 3rd, 2016

The best way to beat the heat near Anaheim is at Irvine Inline, an ice-skating and hockey rink with summer camps, open skate times, and all the rental equipment you need to keep your cool. Every day of the week, check out the public skate times from 2-4pm and Saturdays from 7-10pm. Admission is $5 and skate rentals are $3, making this one of the most fun and affordable ways to stay cool in July.

father and child learning to skate in winter

If you’ll be in Anaheim for the summer and want to enroll your child or teen in summer hockey camps, they offer one week long camps beginning July 5, July 11 and August 8. For skaters and goalies alike, the price is $195 for skaters and $50 for goalies. Lunch is included in these camps that are Monday-Thursday from 9am-4pm.

Skate Like You Mean It

Kids don’t have all the fun, because adult-only pick-up times are every Friday and Sunday from 9-10:30pm. Admission is just $10 for non-members. There’s also stick time, which is available Monday through Saturday with a $5 admission. Whether you’re a newbie or you’ve been skating for years, Irvine Inline has you covered.

Ask about company retreat options, birthday parties or another custom idea!

 

Where to Watch the Fireworks in Anaheim

July 1st, 2016

Independence Day is taken seriously in Anaheim, with numerous restaurants offering specials for active-duty service members and veterans, but the fireworks are the real showstoppers. There’s Disneyland, which streams their show live at 8:50pm, but the party gets started well before the night falls! In Disney’s Hollywood Studios, a DJ begins setting the mood at 5:30 and the adults-only Rockin’ Fourth of July Party kicks off at 10:30. You’ll also be treated to seeing your favorite Disney characters in patriotic costumes throughout the day.

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The annual OC Block Party stretches from 3-11pm, with the fireworks spectacular show at 9:45. It’s a food lover’s paradise where local vendors whip up special patriotic dishes to tempt you. Carnival games, merchandise vendors, live art installations and more can be found at this family-friendly event at the Angels Stadium.

Light Up the Night

Balboa Peninsula-Newport Bay’s July 4 fireworks and parade cruises are a fantastic way to celebrate the holiday. Boat parades take place at 1pm and 4pm, and you can take a tour along Newport Beach to enjoy the California sunshine. The fireworks begin at 7pm.

Enjoy a quaint fireworks show at the annual Community Fireworks Show and Festival of Fullerton. Entertainment, food and live music are on hand to keep you entertained. Most activities are free, and the fireworks begin at 9pm, lasting 20 minutes!

Raise the Steaks!

June 20th, 2016

Don’t think that all of California is healthy eating and seafood (although there’s plenty of it!). It’s also a fabulous spot for some of the best steakhouses in the country. Check out The Ranch Restaurant, which has a Wild West saloon attached in case you’re craving happy hour steak bites instead of the whole enchilada, or rib eye in this case! There’s over 53,000 square feet to explore, with ingredients and cuts coming from several California farms.

Beef steak on black stone table

Prime Cut Café is another popular pick, open for lunch and dinner with an expansive wine bar. Try their happy hour menu where the steak frites are perfectly seasoned and complement the hanger steak, which is always flawlessly prepared. A separate dessert menu featuring seasonally changing treats is the rich ending to an idyllic outing.

Good Eats

Manhattan Steak and Seafood offers a touch of the Big Apple in southern California. Go back in time to the era of supper clubs in a classy environment, where the drinks are poured strong and the dishes are on point. However, the menu is always changing, so you need to check it out every time you’re in Anaheim to see what’s new!

From the Steer Inn where you get generous portions of locally farmed cuts to the countless Japanese infusion steak houses, there are plenty of choices to find just the right cut for you.

Celebrate the First Day of Summer

June 16th, 2016

It’s officially summer, and you’re on the golden coast where (although it feels like summer year-round!), it’s an especially fantastic location to celebrate. Start your morning with a SUP or surfing lesson at one of the area’s famous beaches. Venice, Malibu and Muscle Beach are all fantastic options. Try the quintessential California roller blading along a boardwalk, and you’ll instantly be in the summer groove.

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There are more fro-yo options in California than you can shake a stick at, as well as bubble tea and gourmet ice cream. Cool off after your morning outing by stopping at Salt and Straw (a Portland, Ore. transplant), the classic local Pinkberry, or the Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor and treat yourself to some summer lovin’.

Easy Living

Disneyland, if you haven’t made it there yet on this trip, is full of easy living during the summertime. Book a character experience, or pamper yourself with a park spa visit. Inspired by Bali experience, the Disney Spa offers a Mandara Spa Ritual, a couples retreat, and a special sunrise 2+ hour massage experience.

There are summer solstice celebrations throughout the region, with a massive Solstice Parade in Santa Barbara (well worth the trip) with live music, a drum circle and plenty of events for the kids.