Jollibee Coming to Anaheim, Or: Can We Finally Get Around to Calling a Part of Anaheim Little Manila?

I knew that the Filipino chain Jollibee (its mascot is above, rocking the Bieber and BeyoncĂ©) was interested in coming to Anaheim months before its official announcement last week, but couldn't spill the deets due to…well, I can't even say that! It's a good thing, of course, and represents the second effort by the chain to enter the Orange County/Long Beach area (a LBC try failed). But it also raises a fundamental question for my hometown: when are we going to get around to designating the shopping plaza where it's landing as Little Manila, or at least a part of the city by that name?

That shopping plaza hosts the turo-turo joint Kapit Bahay, a Filipino bakery, a Filipino store of some sorts, and will also feature another Filipino bakery next to Jollibee. And that entire area of Anaheim has Filipinos living among Mexis and elderly gabachos–St. Boniface Church has one of the county's only Tagalog-language Masses, and a new Filipino-focused evangelical church just opened a couple of miles from the coming Jollibee. I don't have the latest Census figures in front of me, but I'd say Anaheim is the heart of the Filipino community in Orange County–time to acknowledge them.

Then again, Anaheim won't even designate Brookhurst Avenue as Little Arabia despite the chingo of Middle Eastern restaurants and business there. And my idea to name the intersection of La Palma and Euclid avenues (just up Euclid from the coming Jollibee) Thai Corner due to its preponderance of Thai businesses went nowhere…oh, well. Can't wait to send Edwin to Jollibee!

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