100 Reasons to Be Ecstatic About Summer In OC!

Summer here is bliss, better than anyplace else in the States

 

87.WATCHING KITE SURFERS IN LONG BEACH
There's something about the air just east of the Belmont Veterans' Pier in Long Beach . . . oh yeah—it blows. For that reason, it's the best spot in the region to watch kite surfers ride the whitecaps just offshore. The wind picks up in the early afternoon—bring binoculars to check out the daredevils near the breakwater. Most important, bring a kid with a kite. 15 39th Place, Long Beach.

88.GETTING SCARED AT THE ABANDONED CRYSTAL COVE COTTAGES
Drive down Pacific Coast Highway from Newport Beach until you see the sign for Crystal Cove parking. Take the shuttle bus, or hike down to the beach, and spend the day playing in the sand. After nightfall, turn on your flashlight and head to the right of the Beachcomber Restaurant, walking down the beach and looking up at all the abandoned historic beach cottages on the hillside. Shine your light onto the empty structures. Then turn off the light. It's as spooky as Scooby-Doo! 8471 N. Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach.

Star Foreman
Star Foreman

Location Info

Map

Orange County Fair & Exposition Center

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Costa Mesa

Mo Ran Gak Restaurant

9651 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92844

Category: Restaurant > Korean

Region: Garden Grove

Bowers Museum

2002 N. Main St.
Santa Ana, CA 92706

Category: Museums

Region: Santa Ana

Fullerton Farmers' Market

801 W. Valencia Drive
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > Street Food

Region: Fullerton

Irvine Lake Cafe

4621 Santiago Canyon Road
Silverado, CA 92676

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Silverado

Villa Romano Green Farms

200 Avenida La Pata
San Clemente, CA 92673

Category: Restaurant > Street Food

Region: San Clemente

Habitat for Humanity ReStore

12827 Harbor Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92840

Category: Retail

Region: Garden Grove

Habitat for Humanity ReStore

2200 S. Ritchey St.
Santa Ana, CA 92705

Category: Retail

Region: Santa Ana

Knott's Berry Farm

8039 Beach Blvd.
Buena Park, CA 90620

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Buena Park

Aliso Beach

31131 S. Pacific Coast Highway
Laguna Beach, CA 92652

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Laguna Beach

Mutt Lynchs

2300 W. Oceanfront
Newport Beach, CA 92663

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Newport Beach

The Fisherman's Restaurant

611 Avenida Victoria
San Clemente, CA 92672

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: San Clemente

Costa Mesa Speedway

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Costa Mesa

Mugs Away Saloon

27324 Camino Capistrano
Laguna Beach, CA 92677

Category: Music Venues

Region: Laguna Niguel

Anaheim Convention Center

800 W. Katella Ave.
Anaheim, CA 92802

Category: Services

Region: Anaheim

Fullerton Sports Complex

560 E. Silver Pine St.
Fullerton, CA 92835

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Fullerton

The Festival Amphitheatre

12762 Main St.
Garden Grove, CA 92840

Category: Performing Arts Venues

Region: Garden Grove

Ocean Institute, Dana Point

24200 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

Angels Stadium Of Anaheim

2000 E. Gene Autry Way
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Music Venues

Region: Anaheim

Irvine Meadows Fairgrounds

8800 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Irvine

Art-A-Fair

777 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Community Venues

Region: Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach Festival of Arts

650 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Laguna Beach

Sawdust Art Festival

935 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Laguna Beach

El Centro Lions Park

201 N. Cypress St.
La Habra, CA 90631

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: La Habra

Richard & Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center

6200 Atherton St.
Long Beach, CA 90815

Category: Music Venues

Region: Long Beach

Captain Dave's Dolphin & Whale Safari

24440 Dana Point Harbor Drive Dana Point
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Dana Point

United States Sailing Center

5689 E. Ocean Blvd.
Long Beach, CA 90803

Category: Services

Region: Long Beach

Oaks Blenheim Riding Park

Via la Plata
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: San Juan Capistrano

Pacific Marine Mammal Center

20612 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Services

Region: Laguna Beach

320 Main

320 Main St.
Seal Beach, CA 90740

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Seal Beach

Matador Cantina

111 N. Harbor Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Fullerton

Pacific Amphitheatre

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Music Venues

Region: Costa Mesa

AQUARIUM OF THE PACIFIC

100 Aquarium Way
Long Beach, CA 90802

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Long Beach

Dockside Boat & Bed

316 E. Shoreline Drive
Long Beach, CA 90802

Category: Hotels and Resorts

Region: Long Beach

Orange County Zoo

1 Irvine Park Road
Orange, CA 92869

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Orange

Cook's Corner

19122 Live Oak Canyon Road
Coto De Caza, CA 92679

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Coto de Caza

The Bruery

715 Dunn Way
Placentia, CA 92870

Category: Breweries and Wineries

Region: Placentia

Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Pacific Coast Highway and Warner
Huntington Beach, CA 92649

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Huntington Beach

Lantern Bay Park

25111 Park Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

Pearson Park

401 N. Lemon St.
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Anaheim

Hi-Time Wine Cellars

250 Ogle St.
Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Category: Restaurant > Wine Bar

Region: Costa Mesa

Centennial Farms

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Services

Region: Costa Mesa

Newport Cruisers

2233 W. Balboa Blvd.
Newport Beach, CA 92663

Category: Retail

Region: Newport Beach

Catholic Worker

316 Cypress Ave.
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Category: Services

Region: Santa Ana

Wild Rivers Waterpark

8770 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Irvine

Doheny State Beach

25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

The Rinks- Anaheim Ice

300 W. Lincoln Blvd.
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Anaheim

Oak Canyon Ranch

5305 Santiago Canyon Road
Silverado, CA 92676

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Orange

Creme Tangerine

2930 Bristol St., Kiosk 2
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Retail

Region: Costa Mesa

Las Brisas

361 Cliff Drive
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Restaurant > Mexican

Region: Laguna Beach

Tanaka Farms

5380 3/4 University Drive
Irvine, CA 92612

Category: Restaurant > Raw Food

Region: Irvine

Portfolio Coffee House

2300 Fourth St.
Long Beach, CA 90814

Category: Coffee Shops

Region: Long Beach

Art Theatre of Long Beach

2025 E. 4th St.
Long Beach, CA 90814

Category: Movie Theaters

Region: Long Beach

Details

Photography and post-production: Star Foreman
Hair and makeup: Autumn Sanders
Styling: Devon Nuzer
On-set stylist: Sunshine Harding
Models courtesy of Models International: Haley Bartlett, Thor Knai, Samantha Summers

SEE ALSO:


VIDEO: Click here to go behind the scenes of our cover photo shoot.


INFOGRAPHIC: Click here to see the last orange groves in Orange County.

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89. FRYING A FISH IN SAN PEDRO
If you like your fish fresh, and by fresh, we mean fresh-off-the-hook-and-straight-onto-your-lunch-plate fresh, drive across the Vincent Thomas and Gerald Desmond bridges from Long Beach into San Pedro, then hang a left down Harbor Boulevard to Nagoya Way. At the end of the road is the San Pedro Fish Market and Restaurant. Buy a pescado, take it to the outdoor frying station, and then rip that sucker apart with your fingers. Good luck eating the whole thing, though; a better bet is to take the carcass home and use the leftovers for a few days' worth of fish tacos. 1190 Nagoya Way, San Pedro.

 

90. LOVING THE ANTI-SUMMER
You need not fear Southern California summers if you have vampiric tendencies. Those who don't fare well in the signature Orange County rays can stroll into the powerhouse of air conditioning, the ice-skating rink. Take up hockey, figure skating or curling, or just rent a pair of moldy skates and putter around the rink while you count down the days to the cool relief of autumn. One of the best places to do it is The Rinks' Anaheim ICE (which Anaheimers will always call Disney ICE, just like they call the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim you-know-what). Anaheim Ducks fans who are pining for the return of hockey season can relish in knowing they are falling on the same block of ice on which Bobby Ryan and Corey Perry hone their craft. 300 W. Lincoln Ave., Anaheim, (714) 535-7465; www.anaheimice.com.

 

91.HOOTENANNY!
If you've yet to experience Hootenanny in the flesh, then you're as OC as the Dodgers. The county's greaser culture has a long, brawling history, and this music festival is as formal a reunion as it'll ever have: pretty girls with inked sleeves and form-fitting 1950s dresses rocking stilettos till Tuesday; guys with DAs and ciggies snugly held in the rolled-up sleeves of white tees; and the legendary chili billies, the Latinos who saved the lifestyle from oblivion just as they did Morrissey, almost all wearing perfectly coifed, high, tight pompadours. We could also rave on about the cool cars that'll be in attendance, but let's not forget the music, which this year features festival staple the Reverend Horton Heat. There's a reason why organizers keep asking this guy back—you'll figure it out after you witness him mount an upright bass while delivering a face-melting solo. It might even make you feel bad about cracking all those derisive Fonzie jokes at the front gate. Oak Canyon Ranch, 4700 Santiago Canyon Rd., Siverado Canyon; www.thehootenanney.com. July 2.

 

92.ROLLER DERBY
Though roller derby can be enjoyed year-round, there's something about drinking a cold beer from a can while sitting in a folding chair at an old roller rink that goes well with summer. Though the OC Roller Girls' bouts often involve fishnet-clad ladies pounding one another in the face or doing their damnedest to see opponents crash to the floor, you'll find a lot of family camaraderie at matches, with moms, dads and kids on hand to cheer on their favorite team members. Better—and cheaper—than a night at the old ballpark, folks. For more info on the OC Roller Girls bouts, visit ocrollergirls.com.

 

93.VINYL SHOPPING IN THE OUTDOORS
Here's a seemingly antagonistic combination: vinyl record shopping under the medium's mortal enemy, the summer sun. Local bluesman-turned-entrepreneur Parker Macy recently decided to sell his platters not in the typical enclosed storefront, but rather from a small Kenskill camper trailer, with open-air record bins, parked near the Urban Outfitters in Costa Mesa's Lab anti-mall. Not to worry: There's plenty of shade courtesy of the surrounding, aesthetically chic buildings, whose layout funnels a pleasant ocean breeze while shoppers at Creme Tangerine flick through titles from Harry Nilsson and Miles Davis. 2930 Bristol St., Kiosk 2, Costa Mesa, (714) 932-0552.

 

94.HAVING A MARGARITA ON THE LAS BRISAS PATIO
It's hard to find much to complain about life in Orange County—or about life in general, for that matter—when you're overlooking the Pacific Ocean under a cloudless blue sky, margarita in hand. Perched atop a cliff on Laguna Beach's Cliff Drive, Las Brisas has a breathtaking view of the sea. The venue, originally the Victor Hugo Inn before El Torito founder Larry Cano transformed it into Las Brisas in 1979 to match Mexican coastal resorts, has become a Southern California landmark for its prime location. Chill out on the patio one of these gorgeous days and indulge in any of the restaurant's fine margaritas; our favorite is the Crystal Cove Margarita, its tart citrus smoothed out by just a touch of Amaretto, a perfect way to let worries melt away like the ice in your glass. 361 Cliff Dr., Laguna Beach, (949) 497-5434; www.lasbrisaslagunabeach.com.

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My Voice Nation Help
2 comments
Eric Brightwell
Eric Brightwell

*Reasons 45, 58, 67, 87 and 99... because LA County is next door.

Cathie
Cathie

Break of Dawn is in Laguna Hills, not Laguna Niguel. So I guess the only thing Laguna Niguel has going for it is the bare-assed folks at Mugs Away. Big whoop.

 
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