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Events in Orange County This Week: April 14th – April 20th

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Spring Break season continues with special events in Orange County, activities, and extended hours at various attractions. It is the last week for Bubblefest at the Discovery Science Center and Easter Eggstravaganza at Irvine Park Railroad (ends April 19th).  Knott’s Berry Bloom at Knott’s Berry Farm continues all week. Check out the Easter events and other unique opportunities.

Each week I will highlight library storytimes and family activities in a different city.  Be on the look out for your hometown!  This week I will feature the Laguna Niguel Library, a branch of the OC Public Library System. Laguna Niguel Library is located on 30341 Crown Valley Pkwy, 949-249-5252.  Every third Tuesday there is a Family Program 7pm – 7:45pm.  Every Fourth Tuesday there is a Family Film/Video beginning at 7pm.  Every Wednesday there is a Lapsit/Toddler Storytime 10am – 10:20am and a Preschool Storytime 10:30am – 11am.  Website is ocpl.org/libloc/ln/calendar.

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Week-long Events

Bubblefest XVIII and Animal Grossology Discovery Science Center
2500 N. Main St.
Santa Ana, CA 92705, discoverycube.org (Now through April 20th)

Bubblefest – Orange County’s astounding spring break bubble spectacular.

Tickets can be purchased online or in-person. Cost: (General Admission + Mega Bubblefest Laser Show)
Adults (15+): $22.95, Kids (3-14): $19.95.

Animal Grossology – Children can have fun learning about animals in this interactive exhibit at the Discovery Science Center. The exhibit will be open daily and is included with the price of admission. Adults (15+) $15.95, Kids (3-14): $12.95.

 

Easter Eggstravaganza Irvine Park Railroad
1 Irvine Park Road
Orange, CA 92869, irvineparkrailroad.com/content/easter-eggstravaganza (Now through April 19th)

The Easter Bunny is back at Irvine Park Railroad with Spring fun for families to enjoy throughout the season. There are picture opportunities, face painting, egg hunts and more.

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Monday, April 14th

Family Nature Walk Laguna Coast Wilderness Park 18751 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach, CA 92651 ocparks.com/lagunacoast

Join Resource Specialist Laura Cohen on an easy 1.5-mile walk to Barbara’s Lake as you play games and learn about the wildlife in the spring at Laguna Coast Wilderness Park.  Walk is 10am – noon and is free, parking is $3.  Ages 5 and up.

Reservations required, sign-up online: www.lagunacanyon.org/activities. Little Sycamore Staging Are/Nix Nature Center (west side of Laguna Canyon Rd/SR-133, approximately 3.5 miles south of I 5/405). For questions, call (949) 497-8324.

“One Big Appy Family Building Digital Literacy Skills” program Mission Viejo Library 100 Civic Center, Mission Viejo, CA 92691, cityofmissionviejo.org/Library

Program begins at 7pm in the Friends Storytime Room at the library.  Free to the public.

This fun and informative program includes expert recommendations for using screen technology with young children. Parents will learn how to incorporate digital technology as part of a healthy media diet and will receive recommendations for apps and eBooks that will entertain and educate their youngsters.

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Tuesday, April 15th

Baby Tales Songs and Story Time
Granola Babies
3315 Hyland Avenue, Suite B
Costa Mesa, CA 92626,
granolababies.com/products/baby-tales

Story time, songs and music for babies and toddlers and their caregivers. Play time and socialization time following Baby Tales program. The event starts at 1pm and is free to the public.

Pottery Barn Kids Story Time
All Pottery Barn Kids Locations,
potterybarnkids.com

Children are invited to enjoy a special story time at your nearest Pottery Barn store at 11am. Children can get a free passport to collect stamps for every story time visit. After collecting five stamps, children will receive a special surprise. The event is free to the public.  This week the kids will enjoy classic tales by Beatrix Potter and will receive exclusive Peter Rabbit activity gooks

Family Program “One World Rhythm”
Laguna Niguel Library 30341 Crown Valley Pkwy, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 ocpl.org/libloc/ln/calendar

Get in on the fun! One World Rhythm will put drums, percussion, and other instruments into everyone’s hands, creating exciting in-the-moment music-making experiences for all!  Event is 7pm – 7:45pm.

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Wednesday, April 16th

Lapsit/Toddler Storytime Laguna Niguel Library 30341 Crown Valley Pkwy, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 ocpl.org/libloc/ln/calendar

Simple stories, lots of fingerplays, puppets, and easy activities for ages 2-1/2 and under. Emphasis on repetition to aid our youngest learners. No registration required.  Storytime runs 10am – 10:20am.

Preschool Storytime Laguna Niguel Library 30341 Crown Valley Pkwy, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 ocpl.org/libloc/ln/calendar

An active storytime with new stories every week, including music and dance time for kids up to 5 years old. No registration required. Storytime runs 10:30am – 11am.

Sea Life Storytelling at ExplorOcean Ocean Literacy Center, 600 East Bay Avenue, Newport Beach, CA 92661, explorocean.org

Check-in at 9:45am, Program runs 10am – 11am. Members $2/person, Non-Members $4/person. Reservations are required, minimum of five children must be registered to hold class. Register online http://explorocean.org/event-registration/?ee=693

How many crabs can you count? Today we will read stories about the wonderful hermit crab. You will also get up close and personal and meet “Oscar” our resident touch tank hermit crab. We will make a Hermit Crab Pet Rock/Shell to take home. Then we will journey outside to play with bubbles.

Bonkers for Bunnies OC Zoo 1 Irvine Park Road, Orange, CA 92869, ocparks.com/oczoo

Event is 10am-11am and includes admission to the zoo. Come learn all about bunnies and meet some up close! Class includes hands-on learning and fun crafts.

Ages 3-4 years old only. Parent must accompany child for duration of program. Fee: $5 per child (includes one adult). Parking fee: $3. Registration is required! Call 714-973-6846 to register. Please note these Easter-themed classes fill quickly!

Little Picassos Open Art Studio Children’s Museum at La Habra, 301 South Euclid St., La Habra, CA 90631, lhcm.org

Make a “paint” date every Wednesday (11am – 3pm) at the Museum for lots of messy time exploring color and texture! There are easels, washable paints, brushes and paint smocks ready for little artists to use. This is a drop in art studio and subject to change.  Free with paid admission (Kids and Adults $8, La Habra residents $7, Kids Under 2 Free).

Baby Tales Songs and Story Time
Granola Babies
3315 Hyland Avenue, Suite B
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
granolababies.com/products/baby-tales

Story time, songs and music for babies and toddlers and their caregivers. Play time and socialization time following Baby Tales program. The event starts at 11:15 and is free to the public.

Breastfeeding Group
Granola Babies
3315 Hyland Avenue, Suite B
Costa Mesa, CA 92626, granolababies.com

The breastfeeding support group at Granola Babies is an inviting, friendly and welcoming group for mothers and mothers-to-be. Children are welcomed and there’s a comfortable sofa for nursing. You’ll receive both education and breastfeeding support for a successful breastfeeding relationship with your child. The event is complimentary and starts at 1pm.

Easter Egg Hunt Pump It Up 26242 Dimension St., Ste. 100, Lake Forest, CA 92530,

pumpitparty.com

Event is 6pm – 7:30pm. $10.95 per child (online) | $13.95 at the door (if not sold out)

NO Passes, certificates, or coupons for this event!

Includes Jump time, snack/drink, Egg Hunt and more..  Join us for our Easter celebration. Our Easter Jump event combines Open Jump time and an Easter egg hunt throughout our inflatable arenas. Some restrictions may apply. Socks and signed waiver required.

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Thursday, April 17th

Tideland Tykes
Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve
2301 University Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660, ocparks.com/uppernewportbay

At 10:30am, join our Preserve staff for a fun-filled parent and child experience that may include arts and crafts, story telling, hands-on activities or outdoor nature walks. Come prepared for an exciting outdoor experience! The event is recommended for kids age 2-8. Cost is $5 per student and registration is required by calling 949-923-2275 or email [email protected].

Scooter’s Jungle Family Fun Night 25 Journey, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656, scootersjungle.com

Our “Family Fun Event” is a 3-hour event (5:30pm – 8:30pm) that provides free lemonade/snack(s), and a whole lot of fun for the whole Family! Pizza is available at $2/slice. We encourage parents/guardians to join their children to Play in our FUN, Safe, Interactive environment. Most equipment is adult sized so parents, make sure you give the kids their turn and remember to bring your socks!

Child entrance fee=$10/child, includes 1 adult. Add’l adults $4. Limited Space, First Come-First Served basis. Please Carpool. No outside food, please.

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Friday, April 18th

A Morning Stroll to Barbara’s Lake Laguna Coast Wilderness Park 18751 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach, CA 92651 ocparks.com/lagunacoast

Enjoy an outdoor stroll to Barbara’s Lake (Orange County’s only natural lake) on this leisurely paced, level, 2-mile hike with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteer naturalists.  Walk is 9am – 11:30am.

$2 donation/person, parking is $3.  All Ages welcome.  Reservations required, sign-up online: www.lagunacanyon.org/activities. Little Sycamore Staging Are/Nix Nature Center (west side of Laguna Canyon Rd/SR-133, approximately 3.5 miles south of I 5/405). For questions, call (949) 497-8324.

Tot Walk Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park 28373 Alicia Pkwy, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677, ocparks.com/alisoandwoodcanyons

Join Ranger Zak and Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteers and bring your young ones (babies to 3 years old) to explore Aliso’s wild backyard. We will see bugs, animal tracks, plants, birds and have all kinds of outdoor fun!  Walk is 9am – 11am and is free, parking is $3.

Reservations required, sign-up online: www.lagunacanyon.org/activities. Directions:  from southbound Aliso Creek Rd, turn right on Alicia, first right on Awma, left into parking lot. For questions, call (949) 497-8324.

Wild Tales
Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve
2301 University Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660, ocparks.com/uppernewportbay

At 10:30am, visit with Preserve staff for story-telling fun! After a story, learn more about the natural history of the Bay through crafts, hands-on activities and nature walks. Come prepared for an exciting outdoor experience! The event is recommended for kids age 2-8. Cost is $5 per student and registration is required by calling 949-923-2275 or email [email protected].

Kidseum Storytelling, Music and Art
(Kidseum is an art-based children’s center operated by the Bowers Museum) 1802 N Main Street
Santa Ana, CA 92706 bowers.org

Storytelling morning at the Kidseum from 10:30am to noon. Children ages 2-6 years old are encouraged to come with an adult to this fun event. The event includes playtime in the Kidseum and is $10 per child (members), and $12 per child for non-members.  Parking is free.

Breastfeeding Group
Granola Babies
3315 Hyland Avenue, Suite B
Costa Mesa, CA 92626, granolababies.com

The breastfeeding support group at Granola Babies is an inviting, friendly and welcoming group for mothers and mothers-to-be. Children are welcomed and there’s a comfortable sofa for nursing. You’ll receive both education and breastfeeding support for a successful breastfeeding relationship with your child. The event is complimentary and starts at 2pm.

Easter Egg Hunt Pump It Up 26242 Dimension St., Ste. 100, Lake Forest, CA 92530,

pumpitparty.com

Event is 4pm – 5:30pm. $10.95 per child (online) | $13.95 at the door (if not sold out). NO Passes, certificates, or coupons for this event!

Includes Jump time, snack/drink, Egg Hunt and more.  Join us for our Easter celebration. Our Easter Jump event combines Open Jump time and an Easter egg hunt throughout our inflatable arenas. Some restrictions may apply. Socks and signed waiver required.

Shark Nights
Aquarium of the Pacific
100 Aquarium Way
Long Beach, CA 90802 aquarimofpacific.org

The public is invited to get up close with the ocean’s ultimate predators at the Aquarium of the Pacific for FREE during Shark Lagoon Nights. Guests will have the opportunity to touch bamboo sharks and see large sharks such as sand tigers as well as rays in the Aquarium’s Shark Lagoon. Coffee, hot cocoa, beer, wine, desserts, and snacks are available for purchase.

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Saturday, April 19th

Nature Walk O’Neill Regional Park 30982 Trabuco Canyon Rd., Trabuco Canyon, CA 92678, ocparks.com/oneillpark

Join our Naturalists on a nature walk and learn about Trabuco Canyon animals and nature. Light to moderate walk on mostly paved roads. Meet at the Nature Center just inside the main entrance of the park. Hike is 9am-10:30am.  All ages welcome.  Hike is free but parking is $5.

Earth Day Beach Clean Up Seal Beach First Street Beach Parking Lot, 15 First St., Seal Beach, CA 90740 saveourbeach.org

Save Our Beach conducts a Monthly Beach Cleanup, normally, on the 3rd Saturday of the month from 9:00 am to Noon at the beach parking lot at the end of 1st Street, Seal Beach. Check in the parking lot at the Blue Canopy. Please bring garden/work gloves, reusable water bottle and trash grabber so we make less trash. Our trash bags were donated by www.everybodygreen.com and were made from recycled plastic bottles. You’ll need to bring the bags back to the blue canopy and take out recycle items and then empty remaining trash into the blue dumpsters. We provide: free parking, bags, gloves, community service certificates and hand sanitizers

Cleanup happens – rain or shine.

Redwood Grove Hike Carbon Canyon Regional Park 4442 Carbon Canyon Rd., Brea CA 92823, ocparks.com/carboncanyon

Join OC Parks’ trained staff on an easy 1.1-mile hike to the park’s Coastal Redwood grove. You will use your 5 senses to engage with nature as you stroll to the Redwoods. You will also have an opportunity to learn about our native plants along the way. The hike begins at the park’s Nature Center located at east end of the park and runs 9:30am – 11am. Don’t forget to visit our Nature Center when you are there, too! Hike is free but parking is $5.  All ages welcome. Reservations are preferred, please call (714) 973-3160 or e-mail [email protected]

8th Annual Easter Festival, Treasure Hunt and Easter Brunch OC Fair & Event Center 88 Fair Dr., Costa Mesa, CA 92626 ocmarketplace.com

Admission: $2 . Kids 12 and under free.

The Treasure Hunt, which is free and begins at 10 a.m., includes several vendors offering candy and prizes while designated Market Place food concessions will be sites for retrieving plastic eggs filled with goodies, with 10 of them stuffed with a golden ticket. Recipients of the golden ticket receive a giant Easter basket. In addition, the first 500 kids in line for the treasure hunt will receive a free Easter bunny plush toy. Added this year is special Easter Brunch from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in which a half dozen or so gourmet food trucks will offer a variety of brunch items along with their regular menus. Included are eggs most any style, breakfast burritos, quesadillas, French toast, sticky buns, juevos rancheros fries, acai’ bowls, toasted sliders and much more.

The Easter bunny will be hopping by from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. handing out treats and posing for photos. Bring your camera! A variety of themed photo stations will also be available. Other activities, all free, include face painting, a spring themed mural coloring project and the Springtime Puppet Parade Show presented by Franklin Haynes Marionettes at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on the main stage. Children are encouraged to bring their Easter baskets for the treasure hunt, however free hunt bags will also be on hand if needed, along with a map to help guide the golden ticket seekers through the Market Place.

The Easter Festival is held in conjunction with the regular swap meet activities which operate from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission to the Orange County Market Place is free for kids 12 and under, and $2 for ages 13 years and above. Free parking is available as well as preferred parking for $5. More information may be obtained at www.ocmarketplace.com or by calling 949-723-6660.

Science Saturdays with ExplorOcean ExplorOcean Galleries and Science Courtyard
600 E Bay Ave., Newport Beach, CA 92661, explorocean.org

Families can have an interactive experience while learning about the 7 essential principles of ocean literacy at this free event. The event is weather permitting and will be from 12pm to 3pm. Registration is not required.

Pretend City Easter Celebration
Pretend City
29 Hubble
Irvine, CA 92618, pretendcity.org.

Today we color the city in the hues of the holiday as we host a joyous celebration for Easter. From the white Easter Bunny to the rainbow Easter eggs, your child will delight in the vibrant activities they will be able to participate in. Included in General Admission ($12.50 Adult or Child, Free for Infant to 12 months). Activities for the day will include:

  • Good to Go Game: Egg Scramble – This egg-xiting tag game is the perfect addition to any Easter celebration. It will get your bodies moving!
  • Smart Art: Egg-xtravagant Eggs – Easter eggs are a symbol of the season. Visit us to decorate your very own egg utilizing a variety of colorful mediums and materials.
  • Science for the Senses: Carrot Crunch – How do you like to eat your carrots? Steamed, raw, mashed? Join us for a taste testing of the Easter Bunny’s favorite treat to see which you like the best.

Be the first through the doors of Pretend City to participate in an engaging Easter Egg Hunt! General Admission hours begin at 10:00a.m. Easter egg hunt is on a first come first serve basis.

Mariachis at the Mission Mission San Juan Capistrano 26801 Ortega Hwy, SJC, CA 92675 missionsjc.com

Enjoy live mariachi music in the historic Mission from the talented performers of Capistrano Community Mariachi Program.  Event is 10am-11:15am and is included in the price of admission.

Bunny Days Norman P. Murray Community and Senior Center and Oso Viejo Park 25932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo, CA 92692, missionviejolife.org/2014/03/18/make-plans-for-bunny-days-april-19

The fun-filled family event is from 11am – 2pm.  Visitors to this spring-time festival will enjoy carnival game booths; spring crafts: pony rides; family games; a petting zoo; photos with the bunny; face painting; and more. Bunny Days boasts egg and candy treat stations for children 5 years old and older as well as the “Toddler Town” activity area for 2 to 4 year olds and special-needs participants. The area has age-appropriate activities, crafts, games and treat stations along with costumed characters roaming around. There are nominal fees for some activities.

Lakeshore Learning Free Craft Clinic
Your closest Lakeshore Location, lakeshorelearning.com

Children are invited to your closest Lakeshore Learning Store for a free craft clinic from 11am to 3pm. Lakeshore will provide all the supplies, and this week, children can brighten up any window with a brilliant masterpiece that captures the sun!

Drop in and Draw
Chuck Jones Center for Creativity
3321 Hyland Ave, Suite A
Costa Mesa, CA 92626, chuckjonescenter.org

Families with children of all ages are invited to attend a drawing event from 9:30am to 12:30pm. Free, but a nominal donation is suggested to help cover the costs of materials. Join us and let you and your children’s inner Picassos shine!

Imagination Celebration of “Art Outside the Box” Aliso Viejo Library, 1 Journey, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656, ocpl.org/libloc/aliso

The colorful event is from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the library located at 1 Journey. Guests will have the chance to create a giant painting (Koosh the Canvas); paint their own cookie; learn the art of “Zentangle” with Deborah Goldman; and enter to win “Art in the Box.” This free event is sponsored by the Friends of the Aliso Viejo Library. For more information, call 949-360-1730.

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Sunday, April 20th

Redwood Grove Hike Carbon Canyon Regional Park 4442 Carbon Canyon Rd., Brea CA 92823, ocparks.com/carboncanyon

Join OC Parks’ trained staff on an easy 1.1-mile hike to the park’s Coastal Redwood grove. You will use your 5 senses to engage with nature as you stroll to the Redwoods. You will also have an opportunity to learn about our native plants along the way. The hike begins at the park’s Nature Center located at east end of the park and runs 9:30am – 11am. Don’t forget to visit our Nature Center when you are there, too! Hike is free but parking is $5.  All ages welcome. Reservations are preferred, please call (714) 973-3160 or e-mail [email protected]

Spring Sp”egg”tacular at the Santa Ana Zoo Santa Ana Zoo, 1801 E Chestnut Ave., Santa Ana, CA 92701, santaanazoo.org

Hop on over to the Santa Zoo and bounce around different stations, learning surprising facts about egg-laying animals and determine for yourself which came first, the chicken or the egg!

Event FREE with price of admission and free to Zoo Members.  Adults $10, Children 3-12 $7. Event runs 11am – 2pm.

What you can egg-spect:

  • Egg Stations around the Zoo to find, learn, and explore
  • Spring Music
  • Photo Op with costumed Spring Bunny
  • Animal Presentations
  • Spring Crafts
  • “Bookoo” Book Drive:  Bring a Book to donate (age 2 – 12 appropriate) and get a prize!

Free Kids Fishing Clinic
Dana Wharf
34675 Golden Lantern Street
Dana Point, CA 92629, danawharf.com/kidsclub.html

Every Sunday! 12-12:30pm.
Free clinic held dockside.
No reservations needed.

Every Sunday! 12:45-5:15pm.
Free fishing trip. Rental gear included. Reservations required as space is limited. One free child per paying adult.

Science Sundays with ExplorOcean
Back Bay Science Center
600 Shellmaker Rd, Newport Beach, CA 92660, explorocean.org

Families can have an interactive experience while learning about the 7 essential principles of ocean literacy at this free event. The event is weather permitting and will be from 10am to 2pm. Registration is not required.

The Great Park OC Great Park
Irvine, CA 92618, ocgp.org

Farmer’s Market – Come to the OC Great Park Farmer’s Market from 10am to 2pm (rain or shine). There will be music, food trucks and lots of local vendors selling fresh produce.  Free parking and admission.

Easter Luncheon Tanaka Farms 5380 ¾ University Dr., Irvine, CA 92612 tanakafarms.com

Come celebrate the Easter Holiday with your family at Tanaka Farms! We will be partnering with Top Catering to provide lunch and dessert with vegetables straight from our farm! The menu includes Filet Mignon, Honey Walnut Shrimp, Fried Rice and Bok Choy, complete with Strawberries for dessert. This event will also include a wagon ride around the farm, an Easter Egg Hunt for the kids, and a chance to meet and take photos with the Easter Bunny! Make reservations at either 11am or 1pm.  Adults $20, Children 3-16 $10, Children 2 and under Free.

Kidseum Family Afternoon – Earth Day!
(Kidseum is an art-based children’s center operated by the Bowers Museum) 1802 N Main Street
Santa Ana, CA 92706, bowers.org

Earth Day Drumming Circle is 1:30pm – 3:30pm.  Admission: $6/person, children under 2 are free, Bowers members free.  Join in the fun at Kidseum with our popular Drumming Circles and make your own drum to take home! Recommended for ages 2 – 8, grandparents & parents welcome. For more information, call 714.567.3694. Parking is free.

Know of an event we missed? Email us at [email protected]

Pam Gausman is a wife and stay-at-home mom of two energetic boys. In between planning and attending the boy’s activities she enjoys reading, scrapbooking, relaxing with friends, and dreaming of future travel destinations.
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