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I’ll Be Next Door for Christmas: Interview with Juliette Angelo

Posted by on Dec 10, 2018 in Christmas, Entertainment, Film, Holiday | 0 comments

Sponsored With Christmas just around the corner the movie, I’ll be Next Door for Christmas, needs to be on your Christmas watch list. If you are not convinced enough that you need to watch it allow me to convince you some more by sharing some insight on one of the leading actresses mindset when making the film. I had the honor of having an email interview with the star of the movie, Juliette Angelo. I started out by asking her if she could relate to the Christmas hating character she was, or if any of her family members were like the ones in the movie. She answered with, “I come from a very large, very Italian family who love to go all out for Christmas. Decorations, food, gifts, the works. I can understand what it is like to be...

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Make a Holiday Toast with Ammunition Wines

Posted by on Dec 8, 2018 in Christmas, Dining, Family, Holiday | 0 comments

Sponsored We are officially knee deep in the holiday season. Holiday parties are happening almost every night where friends and families are making toasts in celebration of a fantastic year and with the excitement of all the goodness coming to everyone in the New Year. When hosting my friends in my home during the holiday season, I only want to serve them the highest quality wines, and I have recently fallen in love with Ammunition Wines. Ammunition is the shared vision of two guys who had a dream and decided to make it happen. Andy and Bill partnered together to produce world-class wines from Sonoma County and bring them to their friends and family as a celebration of their shared American heritage. After some not-so-careful consideration, they pooled some money together with a few of their friends and started...

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The Holidays Set Sail at The Queen Mary

Posted by on Dec 8, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We attended as a guest of the venue We know the Queen Mary is a stunning jewel all on her own but during Christmas it becomes a timeless holiday experience. With the sprinkling of Christmas cheer throughout from bow to stern. As you stroll the hallways and decks, drinking in the history of the majestic ship you are entertained by familiar songs from Caroler’s, spunky Bell Hops and cheerful interactions with Mrs. Claus. You can leisurely take your time exploring both the ship and discover all of the Christmas activities available to you. Visit the Gingerbread Village where you build your own sweet home; or the Stocking Shop and let the creativity shine though while creating your stocking to hang on the mantle. Mrs. Claus will delight your little ones as they gather round with hot chocolate to hear...

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Snow Days with the Critters at the Santa Ana Zoo

Posted by on Dec 7, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

“Snow Days with the Critters,” the Santa Ana Zoo’s exciting winter event, welcomes visitors to the Zoo during the weekend of Saturday, December 15 and Sunday, December 16 from 11 AM – 2 PM, rain or shine. The event is included with the price of admission and is FREE for children 2 and under, as well as for members of the Zoo. On Sunday, December 16, Santa Ana residents can visit the Zoo and enjoy this event for FREE! Proof of residency is required. “Snow Days” is an annual all-Zoo event welcoming winter and celebrating the joys of the season, including snow! Watch animals receive icy treats and snow enrichment, listen to festive music, enjoy the winter decorations, discover how animals adapt to surviving in freezing environments, create cool crafts, and listen to delightful winter stories. There will even...

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Holiday Teen Favorites at the Disneyland Resort

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018 in Christmas, Disney, Events, Featured, Holiday, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Disneyland   Holiday’s at the Disneyland Resort is something my family has been celebrating since I was a child and it is one of those traditions that I will never get tired of experiencing. From the beautiful lights to the yummy treats at Disneyland, it is a magical way to celebrate the holidays. This year I went with my mom, and we got to experience the holidays just as they began. One of my favorite things every year at is the Disneyland Christmas tree. Every year at Disneyland they have the most fantastic tree that I could stare at for hours. This year I had the privilege of meeting some of the women who make the bows to decorate the tree along Main Street U.S.A. I had so much fun talking to them...

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Visit Whoville to Experience Grinchmas at Universal Studios Hollywood

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Featured, Holiday, Theme Parks, Universal Studios Hollywood | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Every year our family looks forward to celebrating the holidays at Universal Studios Hollywood. Our favorite part of the holiday celebration is getting to experience Grinchmas. The Grinch and all of his friends from Whoville have come to Los Angeles to celebrate the holiday season with your family. This year, I brought my daughter with me to Universal Studios Hollywood to experience Grinchmas. The minute that we left the parking structure, we were immersed in the Christmas spirit. The first thing that we noticed was the giant 40-foot tall Christmas tree that features 200,000 LED icicles! The tree sparkles every night, and the lights are choreographed to the sounds of the season – plus Santa also makes a special appearance too. As we walked through Universal CityWalk, we admired all the...

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A Western Wonderland: 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, the County of Orange, OC Parks and Dana Point Harbor invite families to celebrate the season with “A Western Wonderland” at the 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights. Enjoy festive family activities with a western twist on select dates December 7-15 by the water’s edge. The 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights will take place on December 7, 8, 14 and 15 and feature the theme “A Western Wonderland.” On each evening of the parade, OC Parks will host free family activities throughout Dana Point Harbor including games, crafts, live entertainment and selfies with Santa, all with a western twist. Festivities begin each day at 4:30 p.m. and the Boat Parade of Lights starts at 7:30 p.m. “Dana Point Harbor will embrace the holiday spirit with western themed festivities and exciting entertainment during the 44th Annual...

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HGTV Presents Santa HQ

Posted by on Dec 5, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Hosted Embrace a new way to get your kids and family excited about the Christmas holiday with this hands-on experience in a winter wonderland. As you wait in anticipation to meet and take a picture with Santa, let your child’s magical experience take flight! I brought my brother, my 9-year old niece, and my two sons, who are 4 & 6 years old and we were all in awe of this glorious experience. We first took turns at the Naughty or Nice O’ Meter. The kids got to log in their own name on a tablet, which put their name up on the big screen as the meter began, lights were flashing, and the kids were giggling waiting to see their results! It was so personal and so exciting. Luckily they were all on the nice list! We entered...

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Christmas at the Mission: Capistrano Lights 2018

Posted by on Dec 5, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

From now through Jan. 6, Mission San Juan Capistrano is hosting Capistrano Lights 2018: a nightly tree lighting on The Mission grounds; the celebration will begin at 5 p.m. every night. After the festive ceremony, guests are welcome to explore the San Juan Capistrano’s downtown and historic Los Rios District, known for its picturesque holiday displays, unique dining options, holiday shopping and wine tasting. Additionally, throughout December, families will have the chance to meet an 18th century St. Nicholas for “Selfies with Santa or Mrs. Claus,” in the historic Sala building. Explore the ancient Mission grounds and snap a picture with Santa Claus himself; event dates are December 8, 9, 15, 16 and 22, from 1 to 3 p.m. For more fun, join Mission San Juan Capistrano for “Winter Break: Crafts and Activities for Kids”. The holiday series will...

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9th Annual Christmas with the Critters + Giveaway

Posted by on Dec 4, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Giveaways, Holiday | 6 comments

Join us for our 9th annual Christmas with the Critters for a fun festive day! The children will enjoy crafts, holiday music, bounce house, Santa, watching the animals opening their Christmas presents and listening to keeper talks, while the parents can enjoy holiday shopping, silent auction, lunch and beverages. Tickets: $17 for Adults $11 3 years -12 Free 2 years and younger – No food included When: Sunday December 9th, 2018 Time: 11:00am – 3:00pm Where: 19191 Lawrence Canyon Silverado CA, 92676 Lunch catered by 24 Carrots Catering and Events Holiday shopping opportunities -Tickets will be available at the door for additional $5 -$8 valet parking – All proceeds benefit Rancho Wildlife 501(c)3 GIVEAWAY!! Enter to win a Family Four Pack to Christmas with the Critters event (value of $56) by leaving a comment on our Facebook post or...

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Holiday Gift Guide: Gifts for Growing Minds

Posted by on Dec 4, 2018 in Christmas, Holiday, Shopping | 0 comments

Samples provided When looking for the perfect gift to place under the tree this holiday season, educational gifts always make the perfect gifts to give. After getting my degree in Early Childhood Education, I fell in love with how Lakeshore makes educational games and products that makes learning fun for young children. Every year, I purchase something special for my kids from Lakeshore, and these are my top picks this year to gift to your children. Royal Kingdom Adventure Castle $49.99 Fantasy and adventure abound in this mighty fortress built for endless entertainment—just beware of the dragon! The castle walls open to reveal exciting play spaces, where the wizard counsels the king and queen, and the knights and guards defend the kingdom. There are chambers to explore, stairs to scale, towers for keeping watch…even a dragon’s lair! The castle...

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Christmas at The OC Zoo

Posted by on Dec 4, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

The County of Orange, OC Parks and the animals of the OC Zoo invite the young and the young at heart to celebrate the holiday season on Saturday, December 15 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Christmas at the OC Zoo invites guests to watch the loveable resident animals open treat-filled gifts, and treats hidden inside of Christmas trees throughout the day. Children can join the holiday fun with seasonally inspired crafts. Mr. and Mrs. Claus will be visiting with children and spreading holiday cheer, and the jolly fun continues with games and a photo station. Reservations are not required to enjoy Christmas at the OC Zoo. The holiday activities are free with paid zoo admission. Join the festive fun with OC Parks and the animals of the OC Zoo! December 15 – Christmas at the Zoo 10 a.m....

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Ring in the New Year at Universal Studios Hollywood

Posted by on Nov 30, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Universal Studios Hollywood rings in 2019 with EVE, Hollywood’s biggest and most exciting New Year’s celebration, including an all-new Ultimate EVE package, on Monday, December 31, with extended theme park hours to 2:00 a.m. EVE is included in the price of theme park admission and invites guests to spend the day and night enjoying its many popular rides and attractions with a special park-wide party starting at 9:00 p.m., featuring multiple DJs and live music entertainment hubs, that will culminate simultaneously at midnight with a traditional New Year countdown and a spectacular fireworks display. The all-new Ultimate EVE package is a featured addition to this year’s event, inviting guests to celebrate in style. Package highlights include theme park admission starting at 6:00 p.m., access to private lounges, buffet dining, private cash bars, reserved VIP viewing areas for the dazzling...

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Dana Point Harbor Boat Parade begins Next Week

Posted by on Nov 30, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Families are invited to celebrate the season with “A Western Wonderland” at the 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights. Enjoy festive family activities with a western twist on select dates December 7-15 by the water’s edge. The 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights will take place on December 7, 8, 14 and 15 and feature the theme “A Western Wonderland.” On each evening of the parade, OC Parks will host free family activities throughout Dana Point Harbor including games, crafts, live entertainment and selfies with Santa, all with a western twist. Festivities begin each day at 4:30 p.m. and the Boat Parade of Lights starts at 7:30 p.m. “Dana Point Harbor will embrace the holiday spirit with western themed festivities and exciting entertainment during the 44th Annual Boat Parade of Lights,” Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, Fifth District, said....

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Celebrate the Holidays at Heritage Hill Historical Park

Posted by on Nov 28, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

The County of Orange and OC Parks invite you to experience the traditions of the holidays at Heritage Hill Historical Park this winter season. December 7-9 will welcome the park’s 33rd Annual Candlelight Walk. Join us for three enchanted evenings and experience the historic park in a unique way that only happens once a year. Hundreds of luminarias will light the park’s pathways as strolling carolers and musicians fill the night air with seasonal music. The historical buildings will be aglow with Christmas lights and holiday decoration and will be staffed with docents to share each building’s history. Children can visit with Santa in the Arbor, enjoy crafts with Mrs. Claus, watch puppet shows in the Wagon Wheel Corral, and sit at a school desk while storytellers from OC Public Libraries spin holiday tales in the one-room El Toro...

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Knott’s ‘Merry’ Farm Tree Lighting

Posted by on Nov 26, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday, Knott's Berry Farm, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We attended the event as a guest of Knott’s We kicked off the holiday season this year at a very special tree lighting as Knott’s Berry Farm became transformed into Knott’s Merry Farm. The evening of the tree lighting, I picked up my daughter from school, and we went to Knott’s Berry Farm for a lovely mother and daughter night out. When we first arrived, we went to Santa’s Christmas Cabin to visit with Santa. My daughter sat next to Santa and whispered all her Christmas wishes into his ear. After visiting Santa, we walked around and did a little holiday shopping at the Christmas Crafts Village. Throughout Ghost Town are many vendors selling handmade crafts that make the perfect holiday gifts. Then the time had come for the giant tree located in the heart of Knott’s Berry Farm...

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Join Frosty, Rudolph and Santa at the Kaleidoscope Tree Lighting

Posted by on Nov 20, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Kaleidoscope in Mission Viejo will deck the halls with a Cheery & Bright Tree Lighting on Friday, December 7 from 6 to 9pm. The evening of family fun will include holiday crafts, face painting, a photo booth, visits with Santa, and festive food sampling inside Union Market Mission Viejo. Children of all ages will be enchanted by A Storybook Nutcracker brought to life by students from the Pave School of the Performing Arts, and a high-energy holiday song and dance performance by students from OCSA’s (Orange County School of the Arts) MONTAGE! The dancers will be joined by Frosty, Rudolph and Santa himself for a countdown to light the 20-foot Noble Fir. For more information, follow Kaleidoscope on social media at @GoKaleidoscope, visit www.GoKaleidoscope.com or call 949.542.4407. About MONTAGE! MONTAGE! features several of Orange County School of the Arts...

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OC Rescue Mission in Need of Thanksgiving Donations

Posted by on Nov 13, 2018 in Family, Giving Back, Holiday, Thanksgiving | 0 comments

As the holiday season kicks into gear, Orange County Rescue Mission is calling on the local community’s help for critical food donations of sides dishes ahead of its 53rd annual Thanksgiving dinner, which will feed more than 285 homeless men, women and children in the region. “For many of us, Thanksgiving is another opportunity to gather with family and friends, and enjoy a delicious meal,” says Jim Palmer, President of Orange County Rescue Mission. “For those currently living at the Village of Hope and other local residents, this meal means so much more. Many residents have never had an opportunity to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, and we are urgently asking for food donations from the community so that we can offer a memorable holiday for those in need.” Palmer notes that while the Rescue Mission typically receives a...

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2018 Orange County Thanksgiving Dining Guide

Posted by on Nov 12, 2018 in Dining, Events, Holiday, Thanksgiving | 0 comments

A cornucopia of Thanksgiving feasting choices are aplenty throughout Southern California’s Orange County. Included in this autumnal round up are spectacular Laguna Beach options at the award winning Selanne Steak Tavern and the always picturesque and elegant Montage Laguna Beach. Traveling up the coast to Fashion Island Hotel never disappoints with two delectable dining options, brunch and dinner. And for those who want to celebrate in the center of the County, Hotel Irvine’s playful and tasty Backyard dinner is the place for family and friends to enjoy outdoor fun and games alongside traditional dining. Selanne Steak Tavern 1464 S Coast Hwy Laguna Beach, CA 92651 Thursday, November 22, from 1 to 8 p.m. Always elegant and decidedly delicious, Selanne Steak Tavern presents its festive dinner menu for Thanksgiving sharing with family and friends. Chef Joshua Severson’s meal features three...

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2018 Nutcracker Performances in Orange County

Posted by on Nov 2, 2018 in Ballet, Christmas, Entertainment, Events, Featured, Film, Holiday, Theatre | 0 comments

Affiliate Featured The Land of Sweets is coming to you! Discover all the Nutcracker productions bringing a bit of holiday magic to Orange County. American Ballet Theatre Performance of The Nutcracker Segerstrom Center for the Arts 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, CA The ballet will perform December 14th through the 23rd. Tickets – Start at $29. “This Nutcracker is cracking good!” raved the New York Post when American Ballet Theatre premiered this delectable holiday favorite. As the lights dim and Tchaikovsky’s beautiful score fills the air, young Clara enters a dreamlike journey amid magical toy soldiers, mischievous mice, sparkling snowflakes and a glittering Christmas tree! With an impressive cast of more than 100 performers, ABT’s The Nutcracker features set and costumes by Richard Hudson (Tony Award winner, The Lion King), with choreography by ABT Artist in Residence Alexei...

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Teen Fun at Legoland Brick-or-Treat Party Nights

Posted by on Oct 25, 2018 in Halloween, Holiday, LegoLand | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Halloween is one of the best times of year to start preparing yourself for the holiday season because after Halloween comes so many more. To start out your holiday season right Halloween needs to be amazing and what better way to do that than with a fun family trip down to Legoland for Brick-or-Treat Party Nights. I have been going to Brick or Treat for years on end with my family, so every tie it comes around I am more than happy to go. The morning that we were going we put on our costumes and headed down to Carlsbad. We arrived at Legoland and took some pictures in the front of the park an then we went into SeaLife. SeaLife is one of my favorite attractions in Legoland because it...

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2018 Discovery Cube’s Annual Pumpkin Launch

Posted by on Oct 23, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Pumpkin Launch is an all ages, FREE community event that invites guests to come onto a university campus and participate in a fun-filled STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) festival. The headlining event invites local engineer clubs and student Pumpkin Launch contestants to use the principles of STEM to build trebuchet machines that send pumpkins high in the sky and towards large targets lining the field – sometimes more than 50 yards! The team with the highest score wins the coveted Pumpkin Launch trophy. In typical Discovery Cube fashion, guests can become an engineer for the day by making, building and testing their own launchers at the hands-on learning encounters and STEM festival, as well as enjoy some of Orange County’s best food trucks. WHEN: Saturday, November 3, 2018 10AM – 2PM WHERE: Cal State Fullerton Athletic Field 800 N....

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Irvine Park Railroad’s 23rd Annual Christmas Train + Giveaway

Posted by on Oct 12, 2018 in Christmas, Featured, Giving Back, Holiday | 42 comments

It’s the season, once again for Irvine Park Railroad’s annual Christmas Train. Come with family and friends and take this enchanting night ride through historic Irvine Regional Park to meet Santa Claus. The train will depart every 15 minutes from the brightly-lit train station and drop passengers off at the North Pole. Christmas Train tickets may be purchased to ride the train at a specific date and time — get in line and board the train any time during the hour for which you purchase tickets. Tickets may be purchased online ONLY and can be purchased beginning November 1st; tickets may not be purchased in person. Visit www.IrvineParkRailroad.com for details. While waiting to board the train, there are many activities for children to enjoy in Santa’s Village located next to the train station. Activities will be open when the...

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Pageant of the Monsters Haunted House

Posted by on Oct 9, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Just when you thought it was safe to go backstage…The Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters brings a “monster” of a good time to Laguna Beach! Reviving an event from years past, Pageant of the Masters Director Diane Challis Davy presents the Pageant of the Monsters, transforming the Pageant’s backstage into a Haunted House with an artistic twist. The event will take place on October 26, 27, 28 and 31 at the Festival of Arts from 6 – 9:30pm. This is the 5th presentation of Pageant of the Monsters. Davy originated the haunted house idea in 1996, it was repeated in 1997 and then again in 2007 and 2013. This year, the Pageant of the Masters’ creative team of artists and technicians has reunited to resurrect the acclaimed Halloween Haunted House as part of the Pageant of...

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Yappy Howl-O-Ween at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel

Posted by on Oct 9, 2018 in Events, Halloween | 0 comments

Nothing gets cuter than a dog dressed in a costume. With Halloween just around the corner, we’d love for you to join The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel’s Yappy Howl-O-Ween, a canine and companion cocktail party and costume contest! Perfect for families and friends to enjoy, the resort’s Yappy Howl-O-Ween can’t be missed! Proceeds from the event (and all of the resort’s Yappy Hours) are donated to Canine Companions for Independence, a non-profit that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly trained assistance dogs. When & Time: Thursday, October 25, 2018 from 4- 7 p.m. Where: The Dana Lawn at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel (1 Ritz Carlton Dr., Dana Point, 92629) What: Haute hounds will enjoy flavored water like bacon, chicken, beef, or vegan, while human guests relax with a glass of Mutt Lynch Unleashed Chardonnay, Merlot Over...

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Vampirates Take over Pirate’s Dinner Adventure

Posted by on Oct 9, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Have you ever wondered how pirates celebrate the Halloween season? Wonder no more for I have the answer, they hit the seas and fight against vampirates! Vampirates? Well what else would you call pirates turned vampires who sail the seas for booty and meals. Where can you see these said vampirates? Well that’s easy in Buena Park at none other than Pirate’s Dinner Adventure. That’s right Pirate’s Dinner Adventure has transformed its show into a ghoulishly fun experience filled with pirates, vampires, and gypsies swinging high above. If you’ve never experienced Pirate’s Dinner Adventure, then I suggest you go during the Halloween festivities. The special Halloween show transports you to the 18th century. As you enter the arena, before you is the Spanish galleon nestled in an indoor lagoon. From the...

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2018 OC Zoo Halloween Zoo-tacular

Posted by on Oct 5, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

The County of Orange and OC Parks are pleased to present the annual Halloween Zoo-tacular at the OC Zoo located inside Irvine Regional Park on Saturday, October 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Celebrate the fall season with festive activities and the animals of the OC Zoo! Families are invited to bring their children to trick-or-treat, explore the zoo during a spooky scavenger hunt and create Halloween and fall-themed crafts. OC Zoo animals will join the fun as they receive treat-filled pumpkins and special Halloween treats throughout the day, and the first 100 children in costume ages 12 and under will receive a free gift. “Visitors of all ages can come explore the Zoo-tacular event located inside Irvine Regional Park,” said Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer. “This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to show off their...

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Teen Guide to Knott’s Scary Farm

Posted by on Oct 5, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday, Knott's Berry Farm | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Knott’s Hanging out with friends and going to theme parks are two of my absolute favorite things to do. When you put them together, you get one very happy teenager. My mom surprised me with tickets to go to Knott’s Scary Farm for the first time on Friday. So, in honor of all the teenagers going with their friends, I decided to write a guide to go to Knott’s Scary Farm with friends. This year was my first time attending Knott’s Scary Farm, and I was extremely terrified. My older brother has been going since he was in 6th grade and never found the courage to go. This year I finally felt ready, and it wasn’t that bad. That’s my first tip, make sure you are ready before going. You have to make...

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Kaleidoscope Hosts “Thrilling” Halloween Party

Posted by on Oct 4, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Mission Viejo, CA – Ghosts and goblins of all ages are invited to Kaleidoscope in Mission Viejo for a “Thrill or Treat” Halloween Party & Open House on Sunday, October 28 from 1 to 4pm. The afternoon of free family fun will take place throughout Kaleidoscope with seasonal crafts, a DJ, photo opportunities, trick or treating for costumed youngsters, and some spooky surprises. The first 200 kids will receive trick or treat bags and a Party Pass to collect stamps from all participating retailers and restaurants for a chance to win prizes at the end of the event. Parents will also enjoy food and beverage sampling from Kaleidoscope restaurants, special discounts from select retailers and mini spa treatments. For more information, please visit www.gokaleidoscope.com or call...

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Irvine Park Railroad Pumpkin Patch Through the Eyes of a Teenager

Posted by on Oct 3, 2018 in Events, Family, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Irvine Park I have been going to the Irvine Park Railroad since I was a baby. Irvine Park Railroad is one of my favorite family traditions. Now that my brother and I are older, our friends ask us, “Do you guys still enjoy going to Irvine Park Railroad?” Well, let me give you the most straightforward answer…YES! Just because we are teenagers does not mean we don’t love panning for gold and decorating our own cookies. In fact, when we know that a holiday is coming up, we jump at the chance to go to Irvine Park Railroad. I know a lot of the activities they have at the park seem like they would only be appealing to toddlers and younger children, but adults forget that teenagers are kids too and probably wouldn’t...

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Growing up with Knott’s Camp Spooky

Posted by on Oct 3, 2018 in Halloween, Holiday, Knott's Berry Farm, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Knott’s Berry Farm Knott’s Camp Spooky has always been one of my favorite things to do with my children during the Halloween season. I have been bringing my kids since they were babies, and unfortunately, two of my kids have transitioned to Knott’s Scary Farm, leaving me with just one kid who is young enough to still experience the fun. Since this is one of my last years with a kid young enough to experience the fun, I took my time with my son to make every moment matter. I turned off my cell phone, directed all of my attention into my son’s experience, and it ended up being one of my favorite visits to Knott’s ever. We started the day in Camp Snoopy. I kind of shed a tear remembering my now...

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Dana Wharf Kids Boo Cruise

Posted by on Oct 2, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Celebrate Halloween on the Water with Dana Wharf Whale Watching First Kids Boo Cruise Departs Dana Wharf at 5 PM on Friday, October 19 Dana Wharf Whale Watching invites families to come aboard and join us for our annual Boo Cruise on Friday, October 19 between 5 pm and 7 pm. Cruises depart every 20 minutes and feature costume contests with great prizes, amazing raffles each trip. There will also be entertainment for those waiting to board! No reservation is needed and each cruise is only a $5 donation! All money raised goes directly to Special Fishies: Aquatic Freedom and Education which gives scholarships to the special needs children in the community. For more information visit...

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Tips for Having the Most Magical Time at Disneyland During Halloween Time

Posted by on Oct 1, 2018 in Disney, Halloween, Holiday, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Disney Halloween is one of the most magical times to bring your family to the Disneyland Resort. While we don’t seem to be having fall weather here in Orange County, your family can enjoy a little taste of the season by enjoying comforting foods and admiring the festive decor at Disneyland. One thing that I always encourage parents to do when bringing their kids to the Disneyland Resort is to plan ahead so that they can get the most out of their magical time at The Happiest Place on Earth. These are some of my tips to help your family with getting the most out of your magical time at the Disneyland Resort during Halloween Time. Purchase the Disney MaxPass Visiting the Disneyland Resort has changed forever with the introduction of Disney MaxPass....

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Disneyland Halloween Time: All About the Churros

Posted by on Sep 24, 2018 in Disney, Halloween, Holiday, Theme Parks | 0 comments

I visited as a guest of Disney One of our family’s favorite things to do when visiting the Disneyland Resort during Halloween Time is to taste all of the sweet treats that can be found throughout the park. This year, it is all about the churros with there being seven different flavors of churros (plus churro sundaes) for your family to enjoy during while visiting the Disneyland Resort. While at the Disneyland Resort last week, our family embarked on a delicious journey of trying all the different churro flavors. We started at the Disneyland Park at the Golden Horseshoe by tasting the churro sundae. It was the best sundae I have ever devoured, and I enjoyed it so much that I went back for seconds. The dessert featured hand-scooped vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, cookie dough, and a warm...

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Pirate’s Cave Home Haunt in Orange

Posted by on Sep 10, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Since 2000, The Pirate’s Cave has been a premiere stop for trick or treaters in the city of Orange. During the expansion of their haunt, a long forgotten pirates cave has been discovered. Since then, many have entered seeking treasure, but none have returned. Legend says the cave is haunted by undead pirates from ages past. Are you brave enough to venture through the graveyard, skeletons, time tunnel, and into the siren’s layer? You will be amazed at the special effects and pirate-themed walk-up home haunted house that is geared for ages 10 to adult. There is no gore or blood, think of it as a scarier version of Pirates of the Caribbean. They also invite families with younger children under 10 to experience their “No Monster Walkthrough” where you can experience the haunt and effects without the scares...

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Adventure City Boo-Tastic Halloween Party + Giveaway

Posted by on Sep 9, 2018 in Events, Giveaways, Halloween, Holiday | 26 comments

Your family is invited to a special two day kid-friendly private event at Adventure City! Adventure City’s Boo-tastic Halloween Party 2 Nights Only October 19th and 26th *Enjoy 11 exciting rides *Walk through their “trick-or-treat street” for FREE candy and trinkets *Enter the all-new vortex tunnel for a dizzying delight *Ride the express train for a fun Halloween scavenger hunt *Join them for their spooktacular dance party *Meet their mad scientist magician for some astonishing tricks *Show your halloween spirit and wear a costume (optional) Tickets for this special event are just $24.95 per person. Purchase your tickets today online. GIVEAWAY!! Enter to win 4 tickets to this fun family event by leaving a comment on our Facebook post or in the comments below. We will pick one random winner on October 1st. Good...

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Boo at The Rancho Wildlife Zoo

Posted by on Sep 4, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Halloween is coming fast, Are you ready to have a blast? Bring the kids and parents too For trick or treating at the zoo! Ghosts, goblins and witch’s brew Come as you are, or wear your best costume. Make a spooky spider craft There may be a fright, and plenty of laughs! Where: Rancho Wildlife Foundation 19191 Lawrence Canyon Silverado, CA 92676 When: Monday October 29th 2018 10am, 11am and 12pm Details: RESERVATIONS REQUIRED Reservation times: 10am, 11am, or 12pm (949) 589-7900 or [email protected] $6 per child | Adults are free (2 free adults per reservation) Seperate reservation required per family $8 valet parking Non candy items available at each station Costumes encouraged. Children will trick or treat to all the decorated animal enclosures. Free crafts tables. Vendor shopping available for the...

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Festival of Arts Laguna Beach Announces Return of Pageant of the MONSTERS

Posted by on Aug 21, 2018 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Just when you thought it was safe to go backstage the Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters brings a monster of a good time back to Laguna Beach. Only returning to the Festival grounds every five years, the Pageant of the Monsters will offer attendees a frightfully fun time with ghoulish tricks, treats, and “spook-tacular” art surprises October 26, 27, 28 and 31, 2018. Resurrecting an event from years past, the Pageant’s backstage will transform into a haunted house with an artistic twist. The Festival of Arts grounds will be filled with ghoulish tricks and treats including art activities, live music, wandering zombies and other “spook-tacular” surprises. Funds for this event are provided in part by the lodging establishments and the City of Laguna Beach. This event is not recommended for children under 5 years of age....

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Irvine Park Railroad’s 13th annual Pumpkin Patch + Giveaway

Posted by on Aug 19, 2018 in Events, Giveaways, Halloween, Holiday | 17 comments

Irvine Park Railroad’s 13th annual Pumpkin Patch is fun for the entire family. Children and adults are invited to the Pumpkin Patch which is open daily from September 15th through October 31st. Irvine Park Railroad is located inside of Irvine Regional Park in the foothills of Orange, California. The Pumpkin Patch is located in Locomotive Loop and Miner’s Meadow just behind the train station. Thousands of pumpkins, in all shapes and sizes, fill the areas behind the train station. All visitors are sure to find the perfect pumpkin. Pumpkin Patch activities include: Train rides, hay rides, panning for gold, a child-friendly haunted house, a hay maze, a moon bounce, pumpkin ring toss, carnival games, cookie decorating, John Deere tractor racers, face painting, picture stands, great food, and a lot more. Irvine Park Railroad’s 3rd annual “Great Pumpkin Weigh-Off” will...

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Summer Dive-In Movie nights at Fashion Island Hotel

Posted by on Jul 24, 2018 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

Friday nights are Summer Dive-In Movie nights at Fashion Island Hotel – the stylish, luxury SoCal coastal hotel oozing with relaxed hospitality and atmosphere. Silver screen favorites start at sundown when dates, friends and families pull up a chaise lounge poolside or get comfy on their own inflatable pool floaties to view Luke Skywalker, Mowgli, Thor, the Black Widow, Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Lupita Nyong’o and other unforgettable characters and stars under the stars. Popcorn, movie snacks, cocktails and other beverages are available to purchase for sipping and crunching. Cost is $10 for locals and free for hotel guests. To sweeten this poolside cinema experience, overnight guests can enjoy the benefits of Fashion Island Hotel’s Seas The Summer package, which features 15% off their room, 15% off dining for two and a $15 Market Place credit. Summer Dive-In Movies...

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Queen Mary’s All-American 4th of July Celebration

Posted by on Jun 8, 2018 in 4th of July, Events, Holiday | 3 comments

Dress in your best red, white, and blue and celebrate Independence at the Queen Mary’s All-American 4th of July Celebration from 2 p.m. – 10 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4, 2018. The day-long celebration offers live entertainment from the nation’s top tribute bands including Tom Petty and the Heartshakers, The Long Run (Eagles Tribute band) and DSB (Journey Tribute Band). The popular patriotic celebration is a ship-wide event offering family-friendly games, activities, a 4th of July parade, strolling performers, and multiple stages of live entertainment culminating with SoCal’s top fireworks display. Independence Day revelers will voyage throughout the Queen Mary’s many decks, ballrooms, and salons for a day of multiple celebrations with live music performances, DJs, dueling pianos, dancing, and more! On the Verandah Deck, Tom Petty and the Heartshakers will pay homage to the late Tom Petty as...

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2018 Orange County Father’s Day Dining Guide

Posted by on Jun 6, 2018 in Dining, Family, Father's Day, Holiday | 0 comments

Father’s Day is just days away, and Orange County’s top restaurants are rolling out the red carpets for dad’s and offering exquisite special menus for the big day. Make the dad in your life feel extra special this Father’s Day by treating him to brunch, lunch or dinner at one of these restaurants listed in our Orange County father’s day dining guide. From buffets to burgers and cigars to seafood, Orange County has Father’s Day in the bag for dads, dads-to-be and dad-like figures. At Montage Laguna Beach’s Studio is a champagne Father’s Day brunch that includes live entertainment and games. A gourmet brunch with signature burgers and chicken and waffles is being served at Selanne Steak Tavern by dad/Chef Josh Severson complete with a selection of creative cocktails. For a more playful day, dads and their families can...

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Free Dads & Grads Party at the MainPlace Mall

Posted by on Jun 4, 2018 in Events, Father's Day | 0 comments

MainPlace Mall, Santa Ana’s premiere shopping destination, is throwing a “Dads & Grads” themed Party on the Patio and Art Walk to celebrate Father’s Day and new graduates. On Saturday, June 9 from 2-5 pm, guests can relax, dine, and unwind while enjoying a free afternoon of entertainment, food and beverage sampling, giveaways and much more! Taking place on the second-floor patio outside of Lucille’s Smokehouse BBQ, Applebee’s and Wokcano, attendees can enjoy free beer and food samples while listening to live classic rock. There will also be a photo booth, games for all ages, complimentary beauty stations by MAC, Makeup Stop, and Sephora and a raffle where you can enter-to-win merchandise from MainPlace Mall retailers. Dads and grads in attendance will receive a complimentary gift from MainPlace Mall. In addition to the Party on the Patio, MainPlace will...

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Cinépolis Summer Kids Movie Series

Posted by on Jun 1, 2018 in Entertainment, Events, Film, Summer | 0 comments

The Cinépolis Summer Kids Series is back and for the first time ever, debuting at all Cinépolis Luxury Cinema locations. Occurring every Tuesday at 10am, now through August 14, guests can enjoy $1 movie tickets at Cinépolis USA theaters and $3 movie tickets at Cinépolis Luxury Cinema theaters for special screenings of their favorite animated movie. All summer movies are suited for the entire family, with a G or PG rating. Groups and events are available at participating locations with 48hrs notice. A full list of movies and dates below: • “The Boss Baby”- June 12 • “The Angry Birds Movie” – June 19 • “Smurfs: The Lost Village” – June 26 • “The Emoji Movie” – July 3 • “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” – July 10 • “The Lego Ninjago Movie” – July 17 • “The...

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OC Parks Summer Concert Series and Sunset Cinema film series

Posted by on May 31, 2018 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

The County of Orange and OC Parks are pleased to present the annual OC Parks Summer Concert Series and Sunset Cinema film series, with events kicking off in June. Enjoy summer nights at your favorite regional parks with free concerts and movie screenings in a family-friendly atmosphere. June films include The Jungle Book, The Lion King, and Guardians of the Galaxy, and concerts feature Donavon Frankenreiter, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. All events will include free parking with food and drink available for purchase. Dates and times vary per series, for more information about summer-long events visit ocparks.com. OC Parks Sunset Cinema June Dates Saturdays June 16, 23, 30 from 6 –1 0 p.m. OC Parks Summer Concert Series June Dates Thursdays June 21, 28 from 5 – 8 p.m. OC Parks Sunset Cinema Film Series Carbon Canyon Regional...

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Some Spook-tacular Fun is coming to the Disneyland Resort

Posted by on May 17, 2018 in Disney, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort returns for more spook-tacular days than ever this year, enchanting guests of all ages with frightfully fun experiences themed especially for the season, from Sept. 7 through October 31, 2018. Eerie encounters and fiendish fun await guests at both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park as favorite experiences are transformed into dreadful delights. With seasonal attraction overlays, Halloween-themed décor and food and beverage offerings, plus encounters with dastardly Disney villains, happy haunts will materialize around every corner. Additionally, the guest-favorite Mickey’s Halloween Party will return with 15 nights of after- hours fun. This separate-ticket event features some exclusive entertainment, Disney characters in their Halloween attire, trick or treating at locations throughout Disneyland Park and a chance for the entire family to visit the parks in costumes. Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party go...

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Mother’s Day Family Festival

Posted by on May 8, 2018 in Events, Mother's Day | 0 comments

Boomtown Brewery hosts a Family Day with mom at heart. This Mother’s Day, come to Boomtown Brewery and treat mom to some family fun and delicious ale. This FREE to attend event is Sunday, May 13 from 12:00pm-6:00pm with plenty of fun activities perfect for the whole family (and some last minute hand crafted gifts for mom): chocolate decorating, succulent designing, a bouncy house, face painting, and a photo booth! A BBQ vendor will be in attendance taking care of dinner, so mom doesn’t have to cook. Open to all ages, no reservation required. Haven’t thought about what to get mom for Mother’s Day yet? Keep thinking…but while you’re thinking, put this event on your calendar. This event is perfect for mom to get out of the house and have a craft brew, but keep her kids nearby as...

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Mother’s Day Brunch by the Sea at Hotel Shangri-La

Posted by on May 7, 2018 in Dining, Events, Featured, Mother's Day | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue This past weekend I was treated to an early Mother’s Day brunch by the sea at the beautiful Hotel Shangri-La in Santa Monica. The boutique hotel is the perfect place to treat mom to brunch on Mother’s Day because of the hotel’s beautiful ocean views, timeless decor and excellent cuisine. While I had the pleasure of enjoying brunch in their elegant restaurant, brunch on Mother’s Day will be served al fresco under the beautiful Santa Monica sun on the outdoor hotel patio. Brunch began with a champagne toast before embarking on an epicurean adventure. Our first course was a refreshing gazpacho shooter that perfectly cleansed our palate before savoring the next five courses. The highlight of our brunch was the avocado toast. The dish featured perfectly crisp toast topped with thinly...

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Celebrate Mother’s Day at Dana Point Harbor

Posted by on May 7, 2018 in Events, Holiday, Mother's Day | 0 comments

Sponsored The County of Orange, OC Parks, and Dana Point Harbor invite families to spend Mother’s Day weekend at picturesque Dana Point Harbor. Enjoy ocean activities, dining specials, shopping, art sales and seaside scenery May 12 – 13. Enjoy the ocean breeze during the Mother’s Day Fine Art Show & Sale May 12 – 13 from 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. along the boardwalk between Harpoon Henry’s and Wind & Sea. Presented by the Dana Point Fine Arts Association, visitors can enjoy displays featuring watercolor, acrylic, pastel, photography and more. Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching offers excursions daily, and Dana Wharf cruises on May 13 will offer moms a complimentary “MOMosa” or glass of champagne. Dana Wharf also offers fishing trips on the high seas and on May 13 moms fish free and receive a complimentary equipment rental....

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2018 Orange County Mother’s Day Dining Guide

Posted by on Apr 25, 2018 in Dining, Featured, Holiday, Mother's Day | 0 comments

Celebrate Mom this year on Mother’ Day by treating her to an unforgettable Sunday brunch at one of these premier Orange County dining destinations. Back Bay Bistro 1131 Back Bay Drive Newport Beach, CA 92660 Back Bay Bistro welcomes guests to celebrate Mother’s Day with a gourmet brunch buffet, bottomless mimosas and an unforgettable waterfront atmosphere on Sunday, May 13 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Seafood Station Ahi Poke, Shrimp Cocktail, Ceviche, Oysters in a Half Shell, and Chilled King Crab Legs with Cocktail Sauce, Lemon, and Tabasco Cooked to Order Omelets Omelet or Whole Eggs Made to Order with: Country Ham, Sausage, Bacon and Bay Shrimp, Assorted Cheeses, Diced Tomatoes, Onions, Mushrooms, Spinach, Fresh Cut Peppers, and Salsa Smoked Fish Station Gravlax, Scallops, Trout, Salmon with Dill Mustard Sauce, Sliced Red Onions, Capers, Cream Cheese, Sliced Tomatoes, and Toasted...

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Springtime Memories with the South Coast Plaza Easter Bunny

Posted by on Mar 26, 2018 in Easter, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Spring has sprung, and Easter bunnies all around are out and about visiting and taking photos with kids of all ages. Some bunnies can be a mix of cute and creepy, but the bunny at the South Coast Plaza is anything but that. This Bunny is amazing! My kids were in love with this bunny. When we got to the mall, we were invited to visit the Kids Atelier Store directly across from the carousel for a private event. They had some tasty treats, a balloon twister and a basket full of goodies for all the kiddos. My son loved the frog piggy bank that he received in his basket. There is a Springtime crafts cart that sells them and some other wooden things for kiddos to decorate for a fee...

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2018 Orange County Easter Dining Guide

Posted by on Mar 14, 2018 in Dining, Easter, Family, Holiday | 0 comments

Easter is a time for families to come together and create memories that will last a lifetime with enjoying delicious cuisine. While there are many dining choices on Easter, these are our top picks of where to spend the holiday with your family. Easter Feast and Fashionable Fun in the Ballroom Sunday, April 1; seatings at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. For this holiday, it’s time to round up the family and hop over to Fashion Island Hotel for an Easter Feast and Fashionable Fun! They’re transforming the Ballroom into a colorful Easter wonderland with live entertainment, kids’ face painting and egg decorating, pictures with the Easter Bunny and a family photo to capture all the fun memories. The bountiful brunch buffet features favorites like made-to-order crepes, seasonal salads, tasty desserts and a selection of kids’ favorites. And what’s...

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2018 Orange County St. Patrick’s Day Dining Guide

Posted by on Mar 6, 2018 in Dining, Family, Holiday, St. Patrick's Day | 0 comments

You’ll have the luck of the Irish this year while enjoying delicious authentic food at one of these top dining destinations in Orange County. The Blind Pig Restaurant + Bar — Rancho Santa Margarita The Blind Pig Kitchen + Bar serves up shareable gourmet American cuisine, by Executive Chef Karl Pfleider, with an expansive selection of craft beers and specialty craft cocktails, by Bar Manager Ryan Autry. For St. Patrick’s Day this year, the team will offer a selection of $5 craft Irish beers on tap, a featured Irish whiskey for $6, and a single malt flight, along with craft Irish-inspired cocktails to be paired with Irish-themed dishes on special like Bangers & Mash, Irish Beer Battered Fish, and Corned Beef. Cha Cha’s Latin Kitchen — Brea, CA & Irvine The Latin inspired menu at Cha Cha’s Latin Kitchen...

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Southern California: Lunar New Year Events

Posted by on Feb 5, 2018 in Events, Featured, Holiday, Lunar New Year | 0 comments

Celebrate the Lunar New Year and the Year of the Dog with your family at one of these Southern California Lunar New Year events. Disneyland Resort 1313 Disneyland Drive Anaheim, CA 92802 Disneyland.com The Disneyland Resort is the premier place to bring your family to celebrate the Lunar New Year this year. The celebration is happening at Disney California Adventure Park with authentic cuisine, fantastic entertainment, and activities. The magical celebration continues until February 18th. Save on tickets for your visit by taking advantage of the limited-time Southern California resident discounted ticket offer. Irvine Spectrum Center 670 Spectrum Center Drive Irvine, CA 92618 Sunday, February 18 from 1pm to 3pm. Activations will take place in the Giant Wheel Court including: Lucky red envelopes Korean fan dancers Chinese lion dance Asian themed stilt-walkers Music entertainment And more! Fashion Island 401...

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2018 Orange County Valentine’s Day Dining Guide

Posted by on Feb 5, 2018 in Dining, Holiday, Valentine's Day | 0 comments

Treat your loved one with the perfect Valentine’s Day date night at one of these romantic Orange County dining destinations. AVEO Table + Bar Enjoy a seaside dining experience this Valentine’s Day at AVEO Table + Bar. Executive Chef Collin Thornton has created a special 4-course menu ($89 pp) with standout dishes that mirror the effortless coastal elegance of resort including taragon-poached lobster with a saffron-tomato marmalade, brown butter John Dory with ricotta gnocchi, and an herb-crusted rack of lamb in a raspberry red wine reduction. The final course is a large macaron filled with Itakuja chocolate mousseline, bejeweled halved raspberries, and finished with a sangria reduction. AVEO Table + Bar 1 Monarch Beach Resort Dana Point, CA 92629 949.234.3900 Taco Rosa Taco Rosa takes a different approach to Valentine’s Day, by offering a special experience instead of a...

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Mulan’s Lunar New Year Procession

Posted by on Jan 31, 2018 in Disney, Events, Holiday, Lunar New Year, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Disney Families are invited to come to the Disneyland Resort to celebrate the year of the dog during the Lunar New Year celebration at Disney California Adventure Park. While visiting Disney California Adventure Park with my daughter, one of our favorite things that we experienced was Mulan’s Lunar New Year Procession. As we arrived at Paradise Pier to see Mulan’s Lunar New Year Procession, the celebration began with festive music. Within minutes we saw Mulan, Mushu, and Goofy dancing to the music and making their way closer to us. My daughter and I were captivated during the entire performance by the beautiful music, dancers, and the majestic dragon. There was so much to see that families will want to come back to see it again and again. The magical Lunar New Year Celebration...

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Holiday Family Fun: Winter Fest OC

Posted by on Jan 1, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Winter is my favorite season, and part of that is because of the holidays and all the fun lights and decorations. I also love the cold weather and sipping on hot cocoa with my family. This year, my family and I attended Winter Fest OC at the OC Fair Grounds. I knew from the minute I heard of it that it was going to be a blast and I was right! The event featured so many fun activities that we stayed until eleven o clock at night! There is ice skating, carnival rides, snow tubing, food, and many more fun activities. My younger brothers favorite was the ice skating, while my older brother and I loved all of the thrilling carnival rides. Snow tubing was an enjoyable way to bring the...

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Winter Wonderland: CHILL at The Queen Mary

Posted by on Jan 1, 2018 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Now that you have some time between the holidays, you should check out the all-new CHILL at The Queen Mary! Whether you are looking for something fun and wildly different with the family, an outing as a couple or perhaps you want to gather a group of friends to play in the cold; it’s a great afternoon or evening of fun! CHILL at The Queen Mary is a winter wonderland full of activities that make you smile! First thing you’ll notice is you are surrounded by the most amazing 38,000 sq. ft. Ice Adventure Park; you won’t know which activity to choose first with ice bumper cars, zip lining, sledding and our favorite; outdoor ice skating! We’re not talking about a small ice rink; you get to wander and skate on...

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Toast to 2018 Aboard The Majestic Queen Mary

Posted by on Dec 29, 2017 in Events, Holiday, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

Ring in the New Year with a night of captivating live entertainment, delicious food, and spectacular drinks culminating with one of SoCal’s top New Year’s Eve fireworks display on Sunday, December 31, 2017. Travel throughout the ship’s decks, ballrooms, and salons for one night of multiple celebrations including a live performance by well-known 90’s artist, Sir Mix-A-Lot. FIREWORK DISPLAY: Dubbed Southern California’s top fireworks display, the 15-minute-long fireworks show paints the night sky with exhilarating colors in-sync to New Year Eve themed music off the stern of the Queen Mary. NEW YEAR’S EVE ENTERTAINMENT: Grand Salon Sip champagne and sing along to exciting Los Chicos Del 512 Selena Tribute Band with live performances at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. Windsor Salon Delight in the New Year’s Eve Buffet – Regional Cuisine of Mexico. Walk up only and seating starts...

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Ring in the New Year at Winter Fest OC

Posted by on Dec 29, 2017 in Events, Holiday, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

Winter Fest OC, Southern California’s largest winter experience, invites you to ring in the New Year not once, but twice, with a special countdown, fireworks, and an unforgettable 3,000-balloon-drop at 6pm and midnight. The celebration begins early with not-to-miss meet-and-greets with PAW Patrol characters Marshall and Chase from 2:30pm to 9:00pm. Families are also invited to commemorate El Día de los Reyes, or Three Kings’ Day on January 6, where Winter Fest will host a traditional parade of three kings and a live camel at 5:30pm. Festive food, live entertainment, and camel viewing will take place all day to mark the cherished holiday. All the fun of Winter Fest continues through January 7, with OC’s largest snow play & slide area with real snow blown in daily, plus unlimited tubing down Snowflake Summit’s 150-foot mountain of ice, bounce houses...

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2017 Orange County New Year’s Eve Dining Events

Posted by on Dec 29, 2017 in Dining, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

Looking for somewhere to ring in the New Year? These are the hottest dining spots to ring in the New Year in Orange County. Ways & Means Oyster House 21022 Pacific Coast Hwy Huntington Beach, CA 92648 All aboard for Ways & Means Hawaiian New Year’s Bash! Throw on your cheesy Love Boat costume and get ready for a night of music & dancing! Guests can enjoy themed cocktails, costume contests, and giveaways all night long! Andrei’s Conscious Cuisine & Cocktails 2607 Main Street Irvine, CA 92614 Start the year off in a charitable way with Andrei’s special New Year’s Eve menu (100% of the net profits are donated to The Andrei Foundation). For $89 per person, with an optional $30 wine pairing, guests will enjoy a three-course prix fixe menu, fun party favors and complimentary champagne toast at...

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SoCal Firefighters: FREE Tickets to CHILL at Queen Mary

Posted by on Dec 23, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

The world-famous Queen Mary and Urban Commons, the current Queen Mary lease holder, will offer SoCal Firefighters a FREE ticket to the all-new CHILL in appreciation of their efforts in fighting the recent California fires. Featuring the first-ever Ice Adventure Park in the U.S., the newly-inspired CHILL offers a rush of icy family fun with nightly entertainment throughout the park including international cultural celebrations, live music, Rockettes-style dance performances, fireworks, choreographed light shows, DJs, dancing, tasty food, a nightly Christmas Tree lighting ceremony and much more. “This is a special time of year for many communities and their families,” said Dan Zaharoni, Urban Commons Chief Development Officer. “We wanted to find a way to show our appreciation for the unwavering support and dedication of our local firefighters during these past weeks and current days. We know many towns and...

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Giving the Gift of Handmade Gifts

Posted by on Dec 22, 2017 in Christmas, Crafts, Holiday | 0 comments

Sponsored One of our favorite gifts to give are those that are handmade. This holiday season, we took a break from the holiday stress and spent an afternoon decorating stockings to fill with Welch’s holiday fruit snacks for some of our family and friends. We decided to fill the stockings with Welch’s fruit snacks vs. candy because they are made with real fruit (which is the first ingredient), they are 100% DV vitamin C, 25% DV Vitamin A&E, fat-free, gluten-free, and have no preservatives – making them a great alternative to candy. It was a fun afternoon as my kids added buttons, bells, and stickers to the red stockings. Once we were done decorating the festive stockings, we filled them up with lots of Welch’s fruit snacks before delivering them. When our friends saw the handmade stocks, it brought...

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Pretend City Holiday Fun

Posted by on Dec 20, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Pretend City Children’s Museum has a Christmas countdown going on. Each day they will “unwrap” a holiday activity for you and your family to enjoy. Each of these days has a Storytime with a new book read each day. My family and I went to check this Christmas countdown out. All I can say is… What a treat! Everything in Pretend City is lit up and decorated beautifully. You really feel the holiday magic when you step inside. On our visit Pretend City Children’s Museum went all out for us and had a great pancake breakfast with Santa. We got to enjoy this event with a few other families, and it really made my kiddos feel special. I mean what kid would not love a private breakfast with Santa? After we...

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The Birth of the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade

Posted by on Dec 20, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue For 109 years Newport Beach has invited locals and guests from afar to marvel it the beauty of the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade.  Year after year our family tradition has been to watch these lights float on top of the water bringing with them holiday cheer.   This year, as I stood along the beach at Marina Park watching the smiles on the faces of my children and that of strangers nearby, I wondered if John Scarpa and Joseph Beek realized how greatly they impacted the holidays in Orange County. If you don’t recognize the names, then please read on and learn about how two mean brought magic to Newport Beach.   Over 100 years ago, Scarpa and Beek established what was then called the Tournament of Lights. Scarpa owned a gondolier company...

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Winter Wonderfest: A Perfect Way to Keep Cool This Hot Holiday Season

Posted by on Dec 19, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday, Museums | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Oh, the weather outside is frightfully hot with the record-breaking heat this holiday season which means my plans for snow play up in the mountains during the holidays has been postponed.  Thank goodness for the Discovery Cube OC’s Winter Wonderfest!  You read it right…snow is coming to Orange County.  Year after year the Discovery Cube OC brings joy, snow, and fun to children and adults. To experience tubing down a huge 75-foot ramp, sledding, and playing in real snow you need three important things.  1. Warmish jacket. It may be in the high 70’s but baby it gets cold outside next to the ice.  2. Gloves!!! Any kind of gloves would do, but I highly recommend waterproof ones so that your fingers don’t freeze from making snowmen and throwing snowballs. 3....

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Holiday Traditions at the Irvine Park Railroad Christmas Train

Posted by on Dec 18, 2017 in Christmas, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the Irvine Park Railroad It is hard to believe that it was 15 years ago that our family started the holiday tradition of visiting Santa at the “North Pole” at the Irvine Park Railroad Christmas Train. It has been a tradition that our family has kept every year since our first son was born. This year was bittersweet for me because I was worried that my two teenagers would not want to attend. They have grown up so much over the past year, and things that used to spark the magic in their hearts, don’t as easily anymore. I waited until the day we were visiting the Irvine Park Railroad to tell my two teenagers, and to my surprise, they were ecstatic to relive the magic of the holidays at the Irvine Park...

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The Magic of the Disneyland Candlelight Ceremony

Posted by on Dec 18, 2017 in Christmas, Disney, Featured, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Disney For the past three years, I have had the esteemed honor of attending the Disneyland Candlelight Ceremony as a guest of the Disneyland Resort. This year was very special to me because the ceremony was held on my birthday. After spending the day interviewing the cast of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, I got dressed up to attend the ceremony with one of my best friends, my daughter Ella. Knowing how popular the traditional event is at the Disneyland Resort, we arrived early and had dinner at the Uva Bar in Downtown Disney before entering Disneyland Park. We enjoyed a delicious steak dinner paired with a fresh, crisp salad, and it was the perfect prelude to our magical evening. Once the time had come, we entered the park and got in line...

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Celebrating the Holidays at Rancho Las Lomas

Posted by on Dec 18, 2017 in Christmas, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue This past weekend, my family and I attended the event “Christmas with the Critters” at Rancho Las Lomas. The grounds of Rancho Las Lomas are just gorgeous. My husband and I came here many years ago for a wedding, but this was our first time checking out the zoo with the kids. We saw all kinds of exotic animals such as zebras, peafowls, reptiles, African Servals, Macaws, and our favorite, a White Bengal Tiger named Lilly. We were lucky to have walked by during feeding time and got to observe the Zookeeper feed Lilly a snack and learn some interesting facts about her too. All the cages at the zoo were decorated for Christmas and Lilly was a typical playful “kitty” batting and chewing at the colorful streamers that adorned her...

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Holiday Pirate Dinner Adventure

Posted by on Dec 16, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Arg! Pirates have kidnapped Santa over at Pirate’s Dinner Adventure, and your family is invited to embark on an epic journey full of swashbuckling holiday fun. The holiday version of Pirate’s Dinner Adventure is the best yet and one that your family is not going to want to miss seeing this holiday season. Your adventure will begin by capturing a keepsake photo in front of the giant pirate ship. From there, you’ll be invited into the building where there will be tray passed appetizers, drinks, and an interactive pre-show. Then it will be time for the fun to begin. Your family will take a seat inside of the tiered audience where you’ll be immersed in a pirate-themed holiday story. There will be action, adventure and lots of holiday cheer. While watching...

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Creating Holiday Memories at Santa’s Village

Posted by on Dec 14, 2017 in Christmas, Featured, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue One of my favorite childhood memories was driving up to the mountains to spend time with my family at Santa’s Village. When I learned that Santa’s Village had finally reopened to the public last year, I wanted to bring my children, but our holiday season was too busy to make the trip. This year, I made it a priority to bring my children to experience the magic of Santa’s Village, and it was an experience that they will never forget. We had thought about spending the weekend in the mountains but decided to make it a day trip in our Kia Sorento. We left early and arrived at Santa’s Village right when they were opening. I signed the waiver, got our tickets, and the fun began. As we entered Santa’s Village,...

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Get into the Holiday Spirit at Roger’s Gardens

Posted by on Dec 11, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Roger’s Gardens in Corona Del Mar never disappoints, especially around the holidays. This year, Rogers Gardens has transformed into “Joyeux Noel,” a glittery and fantastic shop full of pure holiday magic! Inside, Christmas trees stretch way up high, completely drenched in sparkling ornaments and twinkling lights. Each tree has its own unique theme and accessories to go along with it. There’s always a bit of whimsy in the displays at Roger’s too; my girls got a kick out of the table & chairs mounted on the ceiling! Outside, a toy train zips through a sea of tiny trees. Plush, velvety poinsettias add pops of red throughout the gardens. Now through December 23rd (11am to 6pm in the Amphitheater), you can even take pics with Santa! As I mentioned in my post around Halloween, there are lots of expensive breakables...

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Celebrate the Holidays at Universal Studios Hollywood

Posted by on Dec 11, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue Get into the holiday spirit with your family this year at Universal Studios Hollywood. Not only can your family be immersed in the magical world of entertainment, but also create memories that will last a lifetime at the family-friendly theme park. This year, the holidays are bigger and better than ever at Universal Studios Hollywood as they are transforming The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, bringing back Who-ville at Grinchmas, and there are Mischievous Minions abound. As night falls, your children will be in awe as they witness the transformation of Hogwarts castle in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. It is a spectacular sight as the castle becomes adorned with twinkling lights, getting everyone into the holiday spirit. While exploring the Wizarding World of Harry Potter don’t miss sipping on...

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Take a ‘Holiday’

Posted by on Dec 11, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Who doesn’t love live music?  Who doesn’t love a craft cocktail after a long work week?  And who doesn’t every once in a while just like to go out with the girls or have a date night with the hubby and cut loose?  Ummm, I know I sure do! Now I like to dance, but I don’t know most adults over 30 who enjoy a loud nightclub or pumping DJ mixes.  Of course to each their own, but when it comes to live music, I really just appreciate a great sounding local band that I can sing along with and get some of my moves out.  I preface “my moves” with needing a bit of liquid courage, but then again when you’ve got your girls by your side or your man on your arm, it’s really just about having...

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Taste of CHILL at The Queen Mary

Posted by on Dec 7, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of the venue We were recently invited to the Taste of CHILL to sample bites and beverages from the six regions across the Globe that will be showcased at the all-new CHILL. The 38,000-square foot Ice Adventure Park features Ice Skating, an Ice Track, Amsterdam Bumper Boats, a Shanghai Speedway, a Zip Line, Ice Shuffleboard and a two-story, 140-foot-long Ice Tubing slide. CHILL at The Queen Mary will open on December 13th and run thru January 7th. The one-of-a-kind experience will allow you to celebrate the traditions of Christmas from six different regions of the world; exploring international fare, the cultures, dancing and live performances. After tasting what will be offered for all of us, we can’t wait to play and explore the world again through food. Come hungry because it’s amazing! You’ll find...

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Back Bay Bistro: Brunch with Santa

Posted by on Dec 7, 2017 in Christmas, Dining, Holiday | 0 comments

Back Bay Bistro welcomes guests to celebrate the holidays with family, friends, great food and Mr. Claus himself at Brunch with Santa on Saturdays, December 16 and 23. The restaurant will be open on Christmas Eve as well with a special Sunday Brunch with Santa featuring fresh seafood and bottomless mimosas. Brunch seatings are available from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. with a visit from Santa from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. For those who wish to dine out on Christmas Eve, Back Bay Bistro is hosting a gourmet, six course Christmas Eve dinner highlighting seasonal sides, three main course options and festive desserts with seatings from 4 – 7:30 p.m. Christmas Eve Dinner Menu: First Course Winter Mixed Greens with candied pecans, cranberries and blueberries with raspberry vinaigrette Second Course Roasted Tomato Bisque with garlic croutons and asiago...

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Discovery Cube OC Winter Wonderfest + Giveaway

Posted by on Dec 7, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Featured, Giveaways | 14 comments

Sponsored Snow is coming to Orange County at Discovery Cube OC, so bundle up and experiment with ramps and friction, while enjoying all-day snow play and tubing at Winter Wonderfest. Experience a lesson in physics as you whoosh down a huge 75-foot ramp on inflatable tubes. But, where do you move the fastest — near the top or bottom? Find other frosty delights in the snow play area, where snowmen are under icy construction with the help of your imagination! Sledding down a snow-covered hill is part of the snow-filled festival, too. Slip your hands in some mittens and dig deeper into this brrr-illiant topic. Winter Wonderfest is fun for the entire family and allows kids and adults to experience a snow-filled day without leaving Southern California! Dates: December 16th-17th December 22nd-January 7th Where: Discovery Cube OC 2500 N...

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Festival of Holidays: Cultural Holiday Celebration

Posted by on Dec 4, 2017 in Christmas, Disney, Holiday, Theme Parks | 0 comments

We visited as a guest of Disney One of our favorite ways to celebrate the holidays at the Disneyland Resort is by experiencing the cultural celebration, Festival of Holidays. The holiday celebration is inspired by Christmas, Navidad, Hannukah, Diwali, Kwanzaa and Three Kings Day. It offers families an opportunity to savor the flavors of the holidays with delicious culinary creations, participate in activities and enjoy fantastic entertainment. Food The food is one of our favorite parts of the Festival of Holidays. As your family scrolls through Disney California Adventure, you’ll discover colorful marketplaces that will take you on an epicurean adventure. There are 11 different festive food offerings with the roasted turkey slider and Reuben Potato Smash being our two must-have foods. Entertainment The Disneyland Resort is known for providing the best entertainment in Orange County, and the entertainment...

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8th Annual Christmas with the Critters + Giveaway

Posted by on Nov 29, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Giveaways, Holiday | 11 comments

You’re invited to bring the family to Christmas with the Critters and enjoy a festive day at the Rancho Wildlife Foundation. There will be a visit from Santa, bounce houses, crafts, live holiday musical performances, and more! You can even watch the resident exotic animals open their Christmas presents, including a Bengal tiger, zebras, African servals and other beautiful animals. Lunch is included with the purchase of entrance tickets! Sunday, December 17th 11am to 3pm Pre-sale general adult tickets $15, 3-12 years $10, 2 and under are free. Door general adult tickets $20, 3-12 years $15, 2 and under are free. Where: Rancho Las Lomas 19191 Lawrence Canyon Silverado, Ca 92676 Parking is required $8 per car. GIVEAWAY!! Enter to win 4 tickets by leaving a comment below or on our Facebook post. We will pick one random winner...

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Back Bay Bistro: Stress-Free Holiday Meals

Posted by on Nov 29, 2017 in Dining, Holiday, Thanksgiving | 0 comments

Sponsored Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year because it is the one holiday where I host all of our family and friends. This year was a little bit different for me because I had planned a major surgery to be the day before the holiday so that I would have my family home to help me with the recovery. Everyone in my family insisted that I cancel Thanksgiving, but after almost twenty years of hosting the holiday I looked for other options to make hosting easier, and that was when I learned about the Back Bay Bistro Thanksgiving to-go option. With Back Bay Bistro being the premier place for families to dine out on Thanksgiving, I knew that the to-go meal would not disappoint and that my family would be able to enjoy a delicious meal while...

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10 Great Holiday Gifts Under $50

Posted by on Nov 28, 2017 in Christmas, Holiday, Shopping, Tech | 1 comment

Sponsored Looking for the perfect gift for a teenager or the person who has everything? Verizon has some great holiday gift ideas this year and these are our top picks to buy for less than $50! Google Home Mini: add smarts to your home (even multiple rooms). Get hands-free help in any room with this voice-activated speaker. It’s powered by the Google Assistant. You can ask it questions and tell it to do things. Square Credit Card Reader: the perfect gift for the someone on your list running a small biz. Griffin Stylus – have a tablet or looking to be a bit more precise with your touchscreen, the Griffin Stylus will give you precision without pricing you out. Cases – from Kate Spade, to Tech 21, protect your devices without breaking the bank. The UA Protect Grip Case...

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Mom’s Night Out Holiday Cooking Class

Posted by on Nov 27, 2017 in Christmas, Dining, Education, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Enjoy a night out with friends or a special date night where you can learn some cooking basics, drink wine, eat what you cook, and have a great time! The classes provide hands on, practical culinary experience under the guidance of Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA)’s renowned Chef Instructors in their world-class teaching kitchens. Monday, December 4th – Fresh Pasta Anyone? Monday, December 11th – A Night in the Mediterranean Time: 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Cost: $60 per class Ages 21+ Cost of registration includes beer and wine! Registration is currently available...

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Kaleidoscope Celebrates the Season with Community Tree Lighting

Posted by on Nov 24, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Kaleidoscope in Mission Viejo will ring in the holidays with a festive Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony for the community on Saturday, December 2 at 5pm. Co-hosted by Mariners Mission Viejo, the evening will begin with free children’s activities, a holiday boutique with local artisans, and at 7pm, holiday caroling and entertainment will culminate in the Christmas tree being lit. Local families are invited to enjoy a holiday photo booth, face painting, cookie decorating, and an ornament craft. At 7pm, visitors will enjoy a sing-a-long style program of classic holiday carols with planned surprises. Hot cocoa will also be served. In addition, restaurants inside Union Market Mission Viejo, on the upper level of Kaleidoscope, will donate 10% of sales from the evening to Mariners MV Outreach. The non-profit program recently established a disaster relief initiative in Puerto Rico, to provide...

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You’re Invited to the Vue Holiday Celebration + Tree Lighting

Posted by on Nov 22, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

You’re invited to Vue Newport’s festive Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting in the Vue Front Plaza on Friday, December 1 from 6:00-7:30 pm. This magical holiday celebration for the entire community will feature live music by nationally acclaimed Golden Coast All-Stars, sweet treats, scrumptious hot cocoa, and the first annual Vue Newport Tree Lighting. This is a free, family-friendly event that is sure to become a holiday tradition on the Newport Beach Peninsula. Vue Newport is a luxurious new community on the Bayfront in Newport Beach. www.vuenewport.com. The Vue Front Plaza is located at 2240 Newport Boulevard, Newport Beach, CA 92663. When: December 1st Time: 6pm to 7:30pm Cost:...

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Celebrate the Season with Holiday Movie It’s a Wonderful Life

Posted by on Nov 21, 2017 in Christmas, Entertainment, Film, Holiday | 0 comments

Ring in the holidays by enjoying the classic film, It’s a Wonderful Life at the Lido Theater in Newport Beach, Friday, December 15 through Thursday, December 21, at 7pm nightly, with additional 1pm matinees on Sat., Dec. 16 and Sun., Dec. 17. In addition, at the 7pm showing on Saturday, December 16, movie goers can visit with Santa, and enjoy carolers and complimentary hot cocoa prior to the movie starting. Harkening back to the Golden Age of Hollywood, the Lido Theater is the perfect setting to enjoy the award-winning Frank Capra movie that has become a holiday favorite over the years. Released in 1946, the drama tells the story of an angel sent to help a frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed. The Lido Theater is located in Via...

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Crystal Cove Tree Lighting and Winter Family Festival

Posted by on Nov 20, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Join Crystal Cove Conservancy for the 21st Annual holiday winter family festival and tree lighting to be held on Saturday, December 2, featuring Orange County’s only “on the beach” holiday tree. Crystal Cove Conservancy, the non-profit partner of Crystal Cove State Park, will host their 21st annual complimentary all-day family event on the beach in the Crystal Cove Historic District. The Historic District will be decorated by volunteers with traditional mid-century décor to bring the holiday magic to all of those who love Crystal Cove. Festivities begin at 10:00 a.m. with a seasonal bazaar featuring handcrafted treasures by local residents and artists as well as old-fashioned holiday decorations. All proceeds benefit Crystal Cove Conservancy and their mission of preservation, conservation and education. The excitement builds when Santa arrives at 4pm for family photos, followed by the 21st annual tree...

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Gingerbread House Decorating Events in Orange County

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in Christmas, Holiday | 0 comments

One of my favorite family traditions is to decorate a gingerbread house with my children. Families who want to make gingerbread house decorating special this year can do it at one of these special gingerbread house decorating events happening this holiday season in Orange County. Fantastical Holiday Gingerbread and Confection Journey of Oz’s Emerald City at Island Hotel Newport Beach Unveiling on Monday, November 27, through December There’s no place like home and There’s No Place Like Island Hotel during the holiday season. This year’s magical hand-built gingerbread plus vibrantly colorful sweets presentation will “bring to life” everyone’s favorite, “The Wizard of Oz,” written by L. Frank Baum in 1900. Now 117 years later, hotel visitors can fondly follow the Yellow Brick Road into Munchkin Land and go on to The Emerald City. Expect the display to follow Dorothy...

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Give the Gift of a Disneyland Resort Experience + Giveaway

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in Christmas, Disney, Family, Featured, Giveaways, Holiday, Theme Parks | 17 comments

Sponsored Discover how easy it is to give friends and family members an experience at the Disneyland Resort. Giving a Disney Vacation makes it easier than ever to give theme park tickets or a dining experience, or even a Disney vacation to Walt Disney World and other Disney destinations. Mickey and Minnie Mouse sent our family some special gifts this holiday season for us to share some great gift ideas that you can give a loved one this holiday season. Give a Disney vacation experience Now, it’s easier than ever to give the gift of a Disneyland Resort experience – or a Disney vacation! You can give gift cards for theme park tickets, dining experiences, hotel stays and more! Star Wars Experiences Something you can do January through March The Force is strong with guests at the Disneyland Resort...

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10 Ways to Celebrate the Holidays at Disneyland

Posted by on Nov 14, 2017 in Christmas, Disney, Featured, Holiday, Theme Parks | 1 comment

We visited as a guest of Disney It is the most magical time of the year to bring your family to the Disneyland Resort. The entire resort is adorned with twinkling lights, majestic Christmas trees, and festive decorations. The holidays begin at the Disneyland Resort, and these are ten ways to celebrate the holidays with your family at Disneyland. Watch a Christmas Fantasy Parade. The holiday parade is guaranteed to get your family into the holiday spirit. There are magical floats, festive music and a surprise visit from Jolly Old Saint Nicholas. Be immersed in a magical world while taking a boat ride into it’s a small world. The attraction comes to life at night with a beautiful display of lights and inside families are introduced to holiday traditions from around the world. Have a frightfully fun time experiencing...

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2017 Orange County Thanksgiving Dining Guide

Posted by on Nov 14, 2017 in Dining, Holiday, Thanksgiving | 0 comments

Enjoy a Festive Thanksgiving Dining Where It’s Warm, Welcoming and Wonderful at one of these premiere Orange County Restaurants. Back Bay Bistro 1131 Back Bay Drive Newport Beach, CA 92660 Back Bay Bistro welcomes guests to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with a festive gourmet buffet featuring slow roasted turkey, holiday sides and more with the unforgettable waterfront atmosphere on Thursday, November 23 from 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. For those who wish to enjoy their Thanksgiving meal from the comfort of their own home, Back Bay Bistro is offering Thanksgiving To Go. Call ahead by November 22 to reserve your professionally prepared whole turkey and a selection of favorite holiday sides. NOV. 23 BUFFET MENU DETAILS: Fresh Salads Field Greens with Apples and Dried Cherries, Walnut Vinaigrette Grilled Asparagus Salad Spaghetti Squash Salad Beets with Goat Cheese Wild Mushroom Salad Cauliflower...

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Enter into the Discovery Cube Gingerbread House Competition

Posted by on Nov 13, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Sponsored One of my favorite family holiday traditions is to decorate a gingerbread house together. Ever since my children were toddlers, I always wanted to decorate a gingerbread house and enter it into the Discovery Cube OC gingerbread house competition, but with our busy schedule, I never made time to do it before Thanksgiving – until this year. It is our first year entering the gingerbread house competition, and I brought our family to Discovery Cube OC to decorate our gingerbread house in their kitchen. The Orange County School of the Arts: Culinary Arts and Hospitality (OCSA CA&H) students were at the gingerbread house decorating party and helped us to create unique gingerbread houses to be on display throughout the holiday season at Discovery Cube OC. Being the OC Mom Blog, I knew that I wanted to make an...

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The Magic of Christmas + Giveaway

Posted by on Nov 13, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 12 comments

Sponsored The Young Americans has announced the dates of its 28th season of The Magic of Christmas presented by KOST 103.5 at LaMirada Theatre for the Performing Arts. December 7th – 17th, 2017. After a sold out 2016 season, and by popular demand, additional shows have been added this year making this season the longest run of The Magic of Christmas ever! Ticket prices range from $18-$64 and include weekend matinées and evening performances. Tickets available now at lamiradathetre.com. This ‘fun for the whole family’ holiday musical stars 250 cast members from the world renowned – non-profit performing group The Young Americans. Artistic Director Bill Brawley and his production team will turn La Mirada Theatre into a winter wonderland with 6000 costumes and over 30 festive scene changes. The creatively produced and choreographed musical numbers include 60+holiday favorites such...

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Take Your Children for a Ride on the Polar Express

Posted by on Nov 12, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 21 comments

Embark on a magical’Polar Express’ train ride from Southern California to visit with Santa Claus himself at his “North Pole” workshop. On Dec. 1,2,3,8,9,10,15,16 and 17, ride the train from the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris, where elves will lead your family in Christmas songs, holiday trivia games and storytelling. Santa greets the guests as they arrive at the workshop. At the workshop, children will be able to play in a play area and enjoy craft activities. Other activities include Thomas the Tank Engine play tables, a visit and photos with Santa, and cookies and hot chocolate. Before boarding the train guests can visit with Mrs. Claus and enjoy refreshments at Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen at Pinacate Station, see the model railroad layout, write a letter to Santa and shop at the vendor booths and the museum gift shop....

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OC Rescue Mission Food Shortage

Posted by on Nov 9, 2017 in Family, Giving Back, Holiday, Thanksgiving | 0 comments

As the holidays quickly approach, the OC Rescue Mission is preparing to host its 52nd annual Thanksgiving dinner, which will feed more than 660 homeless families and individuals in the region. Today, the organization has announced an urgent need for food donations from the local community. The Rescue Mission is currently in need of: ENTREES: · 106 whole turkeys · 48 whole hams · 160 pounds of ground pork SIDES: · 200 pounds of potatoes · 360 boxes of stuffing · 80 pounds of cranberries · 120 cans of corn VEGETABLES: · 120 bags of green beans · 100 bags of carrots · 30 pounds of mushrooms · 650 onions EXTRAS: · 90 containers of butter · 24 pounds of garlic · 100 boxes of breadcrumbs · 75 pounds of bacon Anyone wishing to donate any of the items...

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27th Annual Lighting of the Bay Celebration

Posted by on Nov 7, 2017 in Christmas, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort will kick off the holiday season with the 27th annual Lighting of the Bay celebration featuring a full schedule of seasonal festivities on Friday, November 24 from 3-8 p.m. Families will enjoy live chorale performances, cookie decorating, holiday crafts and train rides. Santa will take center stage at dusk as he arrives by stand-up paddleboard and flips the magic switch to illuminate the bay with more than 50 electric Christmas trees and holiday decorations. An outdoor screening of a holiday movie will wrap up the evening with hot cocoa and cider. Additional food and bar concessions will be available for purchase. EVENT SCHEDULE: 3 p.m. – Live performances of holiday favorites by OC Children’s Song Group, Newport Harbor and Corona del Mar High School Choirs 5:30 p.m. – Santa arrival and Lighting of the Bay...

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Orange County Christmas Boat Parade Cruises

Posted by on Nov 6, 2017 in Christmas, Featured, Holiday | 0 comments

Sponsored It’s the most wonderful time to bring your family to admire twinkling lights while cruising around one of our local harbors during a Christmas boat parade. Local yacht companies are offering affordable pricing for families to experience the Christmas Boat Parade unlike ever before – on the water! Holiday Lights Cruise: Newport Harbor’s Sparkling Boats, Homes, Docks & More Cost: Comp – $15 SoCal may not have snow, sleds and mittens for the holidays, but Newport Beach boasts dazzling Christmastime light displays sparkling from the boats, homes, docks and businesses along the harbor. Now a holiday tradition dating back more than 100 years, locals go “all out” with roof-top animated scenes, dancing Christmas trees, special effects and more (there are even prizes awarded). Hop onboard a 75-minute Holiday Lights Cruise on Davey’s Locker Ships, and be a part...

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Orange County Día de los Muertos Events

Posted by on Nov 1, 2017 in Día de los Muertos, Events, Holiday | 0 comments

Día de los Muertos is a cultural event for families to honor their loved ones who have passed before us. There are multiple Día de los Muertos events happening throughout Orange County where your family can create an ofrenda, enjoy live entertainment and delicious food while remembering friends and family members who have passed. Noche de Altares nochedealtares.org 4th and Birch Santa Ana Saturday, November 4 2017 1:00pm – 10:00pm Since 2002, El Centro Cultural de Mexico has been organizing Noche de Altares, or a Night of Altars, a community based Día de los Muertos celebration, where families, students, community organization and businesses come together to create an authentic cultural experience that reflects Mexican tradition and what makes up our communities today. Organized by volunteers, the purpose of the celebration is to honor the ancient traditions of the festival...

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Pirates of the Caribbean themed Haunted House

Posted by on Oct 31, 2017 in Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

The Long running “Pirates Cave” Haunted House in Orange will be open this year on Halloween night, Tuesday October 31st from 7-10 pm. Are you brave enough to venture through the graveyard, skeletons, time tunnel, and into the siren’s layer? You will be amazed at the special effects and pirate themed walk-up haunt that is geared for ages 10+. There is no gore or blood, think of it as scarier version of Pirates of the Caribbean. The Address is 2548 E Garfield Ave, Orange 92867. Cost: Free Please be considerate of the neighbors while visiting. Happy...

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You’re Invited: Authentic Family Harvest Faire

Posted by on Oct 30, 2017 in Events, Halloween, Holiday | 0 comments

Your family is invited to spend the day at an authentic ‘old-fashioned’ harvest faire on Saturday, November 4th from 11am to 5pm at Journey School in Aliso Viejo. During the event, children can make crafts, participate in activities and enjoy health conscious foods. The event is free to the public, and there will be activity tickets available for purchase. Bring your children to this special event where they can make fairy wands, jewelry and participate in fun activities like archery and jousting. When: Saturday, November 4th Time: 11am to 5pm Location: Journey School 27102 Foxborough Aliso Viejo, CA 92656 Cost: Free admission (activity/food tickets available for...

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Costa Mesa Halloween Pirate Ship House

Posted by on Oct 29, 2017 in Halloween, Holiday | 2 comments

It is officially Halloween Time, and taking the kids out to look at lights on houses isn’t just for Christmas. This year, there is an impressive house that is decorated like a pirate ship that you’re not going to want to miss taking the kids to see. The entire front yard of this house in Costa Mesa is a massive pirate ship complete with cannons, skeletons, and lights. Next to the pirate ship house is a super cool spider house. You’ll want to make a couple of slow drives along this street or park the car to admire all the details of this families decorations. The house is located on 19th street in Costa Mesa between Irvine Boulevard and Tustin. We recommend bringing your children to see the pirate house in the evening, and kindly ask that families visiting...

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