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Grapes for Grads

April 28th, 2016

On May 1, head to the biggest wine festival in Anaheim to celebrate the graduates of the season! Music is provided by Magnolia Memoir, food by the Wine Gallery, and a silent auction and raffle drawing causes quite a stir each year. The biggest prize of 2016 is a one night’s stay at the Pacific Edge Hotel & Resort. Tickets are $40 per person with an advance purchase of $50 at the door.

Diversity Students Graduation Success Celebration Concept

Located at Tivoli Too! in Laguna Beach, the event kicks off at noon and culminates at 4pm with the exciting raffle drawing. The biggest wine tasting event in the area features wines from local vineyards as well as around the world. This year representing countries include: Argentina, France, New Zealand and more!

Art and Culture

Art demos by students at the Laguna College of Art + Design will also be featured, with some pieces available for purchase. Get your tickets early, bearing in mind that at-the-door tickets are never guaranteed. You must be 21+ to attend, and planning for transportation in advance is highly recommended.

Nothing compares to wine tasting in California—especially at this biggest wine tasting extravaganza of all. Some vendors ship their wines to your door, but it’s still a good idea to leave a little extra room in your suitcase.

 

 

Best Italian Eats in Anaheim

April 11th, 2016

When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, you know you’re in Anaheim! The city is home to some of the most delicious Italian joints around, like Mama Cozza’s, where you can indulge on seafood stuffed mushrooms, chicken parm, fried ravioli, and of course every combination of pizza you can imagine.

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At Milan’s Grill the menu features cream Dijon, homemade lasagna, chicken limone, and a peppering of German dishes to spice things up, like their apple strudel for dessert and pork schnitzel. A taste of Europe is dished up in the most unexpected of ways, and it’s sure to delight.

Little Italy

Enjoy the feature at Baci di Firenze Trattoria, like the generous chicken menu with pollo marsala, pollo al porcini, and pollo alla Carolina. The soups, salads and starters perfectly complement the impressive menu, and seasonal favorites are dreamt up on a regular basis. Here, you’ll find no shortage of authentic, rustic Italian fare.

Of course, you can’t miss Miceli’s, famous for being the oldest Italian restaurant in LA. With singing waitstaff at the ready and wine bottles covering the ceiling, it’s an experience you’ll never forget and one that’s truly LA.

Take an LA Tour

April 8th, 2016

Whether you want an official Disney tour, winery tour, tour of stars’ homes, or a whale watching expedition, an LA-area tour is a must for anyone visiting Anaheim! A Day in LA Tours offers an eclectic mix of options, and you can choose which area of Southern California to discover or customize a private tour, seeing only what you like. The tar pits, food truck tours, and classic Hollywood are all up for grabs.

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Sunseeker Tours specializes in tours of beaches, whisking you from one golden destination to another. Learn about the thriving cultural history of each beach, be taken directly to the best food joints at each one, and spend your day sunbathing, gazing at the ocean, and never worrying about parking.

A Tour de Force

Bike Tours Hollywood ensures you get a great workout while also discovering gorgeous California. Choose from a variety of levels and time frames, so you can make sure the tour is ideal for your needs. From beginners to competitive cyclists, there’s something for everyone.

Spirit Cruises offers unforgettable boating excursions spanning from a couple of hours to an entire day. Head to Catalina, or simply cruise along the coastline to see LA from a new perspective.

Top Anaheim Picks for April

April 1st, 2016

Anaheim is spilling over with events, like the Velvet Lounge: Dinner and Drag hosted by female impersonator Shannel. Previously featured on RuPaul’s “Drag Race,” this is the ultimate outing for anyone looking for wining, dining, and an entertainment show like no other. Shannel is hosting throughout 2016, and it’s an event you can’t miss.

Family Relaxing At Outdoor Summer Event

The Downtown Anaheim Certified Farmers Market and Craft Fair is open in April, offering a chance to indulge in some seriously fresh produce and patisserie items—as well as pick up a locally made craft or two. A family-friendly outing, it’s a must while in Anaheim.

Out and About

The famous Sunday Brunch at Tustin Ranch is the only destination for a lazy Sunday indulgence. The buffet comes with complimentary mimosas for adults and a chocolate bar for the little ones. The menu changes slightly as seasonal ingredients shift, so you’re always in for the freshest fare.

For hockey fans, watch the Anaheim Ducks take on the Vancouver Canucks April 2 at this epic home game. They battle the Dallas Stars April 3 and the Winnipeg Jets April 5. Plan accordingly, including choosing the right hotel, and your Anaheim trip is sure to be a blast!

Check Out the Universe Multicultural Film Festival

March 31st, 2016

 

This mega film festival takes place April 1-3 at the Promenade on the Peninsula at Rolling Hills Estates. Located at both the RHCC Community Center and Peninsula City Public Library, a number of panels and keynote speakers will be on hand to discuss the current global film industry. Special panels include “Pitch and Catch,” “Multicultural Screenplay,” “Produce Global Film,” and “Work with China Funded Movies.”

Red Carpet - 65th Berlinale International Film Festival

Cultural events pepper the festival, an homage to the dedication to diversity. A Screenplay Showcase play takes place as well as a Cross-cultural for Filmmakers reception. A Cultural Fashion Competition goes hand in hand with the Red Carpet Fashion Show, offering a serious showcase for designers and fashionistas alike.

Embrace the Film Industry

You’re in LA, which means you can’t escape the siren’s call of the film industry. At this festival, find out who the winners are for Best Feature, Best Short, Cultural Heritage Film Award, Screenplay Contests, Best Actors, and more.

Winners from last year include films like “The Guide” from the Ukraine, “Letterbox” from the UK, “Number 7” from China, and “Tell Me” from Slovenia. A great experience for all ages, this is one event that can’t be missed.

US Military Ships Near Anaheim

March 25th, 2016

Want to get a peek at some of the largest, most historic ships in US military history? The US Military Ships and Naval Museum is the longest-serving dock and hangar in the country. At the USS Midway entrance, the massive vessel serves as a welcome wagon you’ll never forget. In fact, it’s so big it was the first vessel turned away from the Panama Canal due to its sheer size. It served for over 40 years before retiring in 1992 and being reimagined as a museum in 2004.

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There’s also the USS Midway flight deck to explore, complete with an audio tour that will clue you in to the ship’s fascinating history. It’s a fortress on water, and the on-site docents are also military veterans who are happy to share some little known facts and insider information with visitors.

All Aboard!

At the Midway Experience Theater, you have the chance to kick back, relax, and watch some original footage of the ship in action. It seats 80 and is the perfect spot to rejuvenate for the next ship tour. The Battleship USS IOWA Pacific Battleship Center has already snagged the Ship of the Year award from the Steamship Historical Society, even though it has only been open since 2013.

Anaheim is home to some incredible military history that’s well worth exploring. Ready to put on your captain’s hat?

Great Pizza Joints

March 18th, 2016

Grab a slice of California pizza while in Anaheim—or any other pie style that strikes your fancy! Marri’s Pizza and Pasta features fried zucchini, sausage and spinach bread, and famous clam chowder to go along with their slices. Choose from homemade meatballs, hand-shredded mozzarella, fresh veggies and more to top off your homemade, all-Italian pie.

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Pizza Boy is a local chain that offers a casual environment and plenty of complementary treats. Create your own pizza, or go with their BBQ Chicken, Garlic Chicken Delight, Vegetarian or the Hawaiian. Meatball sandwiches, cheesy bread sticks and cinnamon stix are a great addition to your decadent outing.

A Slice of California

The Pizza Press is beloved by locals, where you can get craft beers alongside their Gazette Pizza with vegan cheese, roasted garlic cloves, and chimichurri sauce. Try The Press Cheese with red sauce, mozzarella, ricotta, and aged parmesan. Add on a fresh baked cookie, ice cream scoop, tiramisu, or chocolate mousse to sweeten the deal.

Italian Pizza Rosa offers a simple pizzeria option with classic pies. Get up to five toppings (The Works) and choose thick crust, if that’s how you roll. There’s an Anaheim pie out there for everyone—get yours!

Discover the Dana Point Festival of Whales

March 2nd, 2016

Every March, the Dana Point Festival of Whales gives you the opportunity to get a close look at the annual migration. On March 5th and 6th as well as the 12th and 13th, Anaheim is celebrating the 45th year of whale watching festivities with an epic two-weekend event. It’s the best time of year for whale watching in California, and tour boats are booking up fast. Schedule a two-hour tour, 8am trip special, 4pm sunset whale watch trip, 2.5 hour catamaran cruise, Ocean Institute whale watching cruise, or Captain Dave’s Dolphin and Whale Watching adventure today!

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Free shuttle services are available on festival days from 10am to 4pm, with extended hours on March 5th—the day of the family-friendly parade that kicks off the celebration. Park and ride all day for free, including the water taxi service that has you migrating right along with the whales.

A Whale of a Tale

The California Gray Whale migrates to and from Mexico and Alaska, with 40-50 whales passing through Dana Point during the festival days. At the headland, 200-foot cliffs allow for a real bird’s eye view of the migration. A public trail system to the docks spans just over three miles, offering a leisurely hike for families.

Stop in to the Nature Interpretive Center to learn more about the whales, Dana Point, and local activities. It’s the best time to visit Anaheim, where you won’t be the only traveler passing through!

Top Vegetarian Restaurants in Anaheim

March 1st, 2016

Vegetarian and vegan foodies love how prevalent kind-eating establishments are in Anaheim. You have a bevy of veg-friendly dining options at your feet, starting with Healthy Junk! Here, you’ll find burgers, Tex-Mex, pizza, sweets, and more! Try their Anaheim Chili-Pepper “burger,” fish tacos made from the company’s secret veg blend, or a chez pizza slice.

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Thuyen Vien is an all-vegetarian option for those who can’t get enough Vietnamese food. Enjoy egg rolls, jicama rolls, an energy bowl, and pho with soy chicken, soy beef, or mixed veggies. At the Gypsy Den Cafe and Bar you’ll be surrounded by a bohemian vibe while dining on gypsy nachos, a vegan quesadilla, mac and cheese, or house fries.

Veg is Easy in SoCal

Kareem’s Restaurant is a laidback eatery known for having some of the best falafel in town. At Vegan Pizza you know exactly what you’re getting but will be shocked by the unique toppings and decadent crusts. Pizza, pasta, calzones, and sides are all available. Try the Mexican pizza, Veggie Delight, Greek pizza or Classic Margherita. Indian pizza, Mediterranean pizza and the Spicy Thai are also sure to delight. Where’s your next slice coming from?

Your Leap Day Cheat Sheet

February 28th, 2016

It’s one of the most celebrated days for Disney fans—Leap Day. For the past few years, Disneyland has been open 24 hours on Leap Day to give Disney lovers a full extra day of fantasy, fun and thrills. The “One More Disney Day” campaign has proven so successful that thousands flood the park to take advantage of early morning and after-hours fun. If you want the full experience, plan for an off time (around 4am is ideal) so you don’t have to deal with the crowds, and you can watch a rare Disney sunrise.

Disney is very hush hush about special events, menu items and celebrations. It’s only the fourth year of this epic event, so it’s too soon to notice trends. However, one thing is certain: If you’ll be in Anaheim on Leap Day, it’s nearly a requirement to head to Disneyland.

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A Fairytale Come True

Like any special event at Disney, no punches are pulled. All your favorite characters will be there, the shops and restaurants are open around the clock, and there’s sheer magic in the air. Even better, February is a great time to visit the park with moderate temperatures day and night.

For every Disney lover, an after-hours adventure is what dreams are made of. Where will your first stop be?