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Martin Luther King Jr. Day

January 15th, 2017

 

Mark your calendar for January 16 to celebrate the 32nd Annual Kingdom Day Parade. “Our work is not yet done” is the motto of this parade, which is the biggest in the country. Committed to fighting for equality, a variety of participants show off massive floats. Celebrities are regular sightings at this popular event that travels along MLK Jr. Boulevard, Western Avenue, Crenshaw Boulevard, and Vernon Avenue from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

You can sign up to volunteer or even take part in the parade as an individual or organization. For those traveling to Anaheim for work, rallying together to take part in the parade is a fantastic team-building activity. Hosted by the Congress of Racial Equality of California, this televised event is a must during the holiday weekend.

Celebration Options

At Kiddie City in Leimert Park, the “I Have a Dream” Wall is a favorite activity for little ones. The weekend of MLK Jr. Day, visit the kingdom spilling over with activities for kids. Everyone is welcome to put handprints on the wall as a way to express their dream.

The festival includes songs, readings and stories about Martin Luther King Jr., all designed to inspire visitors of all ages.

 

Spanish Restaurants Near Anaheim

January 7th, 2017

 

When you’re in the mood for tapas, sangria, fresh seafood, Barcelona-style, or another favorite Spanish dish, nothing else will do. Head to the Felix Continental Café, a homey getaway specializing in Spanish and Cuban fare. Available for breakfast, lunch and dinner, try the Shrimp Louisianese, featuring shrimp beer battered and coated with coconut, served with a horseradish, orange and mustard sauce.

The roasted Chicken Cubano is a half chicken seasoned with salt, pepper, lemon and garlic. Pierna de Puerco is a pork leg roasted in drippings with seasoning and a bitter orange for extra bite. With the Boliche Mechado, you’ll enjoy eye of round beef stuffed with chorizo imported from Spain and slow-cooked.

Flavor Fiestas

Try Olé! Spain Deli Shop where you can eat-in at the sandwich shop and grab some treats to go from the store. On the traditional menu, you’ll find Tortillas de Patatas with chorizo, potato and onion in an omelet, served with house bread.

Paella is now served daily at Ole! Saffron rice with mussels, shrimp, pork loin, chicken wings, chorizo and a red bell pepper is sure to satisfy. Get Carlota or Flan for dessert, or take it to go in case you over-indulge on the tapas options.

 

 

A Disney Winter Wonderland

December 19th, 2016

 

Disneyland doesn’t “just” have one way to celebrate the winter holidays—there’s a reindeer’s cart full of surprises! Of course, incredible decorations and special attractions are sprinkled around the park. The Christmas Fantasy Parade features Santa, his reindeer crew, and your beloved Disney characters dressed in their holiday best as they start the park’s winter season with a decked hall and salute.

Check out the Jingle Cruise, available only during the winter months, for a twinkle-filled twist on the classic cruise. This traditional voyage is wholly enveloped in the Christmas spirit, complete with special drinks and treats to keep your spirits bright. It’s a great add-on to any park visit.

Holly and Jolly

At the It’s a Small World celebration, you’ll enter a magical world full of happiness, goodwill and peace with an international twist. Of course, if you prefer a little spookiness to go with your Christmas spirit, the Haunted Mansion Holiday is right up your dark alley. Who knew a “takeover makeover” from Tim Burton could be so winter-fully delightful?

At each of the park’s restaurants, you’ll find holiday-themed treats, meals and more that are only available this time of year, and every year there are surprises. Start planning your Disney holiday itinerary today!

 

Anaheim Plaza Holiday Celebration

December 10th, 2016

 

Mark your calendars for December 12th when the annual Anaheim Plaza Holiday Celebration helps you kick off the season! From 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., you and the family can enjoy giveaways, a balloon artist, face painting, airbrush tattoos, and a DJ spinning the latest hits with just a sprinkling of your seasonal favorites. Located at N. Euclid St. and the Santa Ana Freeway intersection, the Anaheim Plaza is your destination for shopping, dining and entertainment.

Shops and restaurants are teeming with December deals and specials. With 33 stores and restaurants, over 20 brand name stores and 7 on-site dining options, you can finish up your holiday shopping in one fell swoop. Check out Fashion Q, Ulta, T.J. Maxx and Carter’s for last minute shopping.

‘Tis the Season

Dining options include treats like Baskin Robbins, Kelly’s Coffee and Fudge Factory, and Marie Callender’s. Head to Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill, Subway or Wendy’s for more options, or slide into Happy Dragon to heat things up.

In between shopping and dining, explore the plaza’s holiday décor, or head to Party City to get everything you need for your own winter extravaganza. Avoid the big crowds and hectic seasonal shopping, and stick with where the locals shop for plenty of cheer and end-of-year specials.

 

Oak Tree Lanes Bowl-a-thon Christmas

December 7th, 2016

 

Start the season of goodwill towards men with the Cheerallyear.org Bowl-a-thon in collaboration with Anaheim’s Oak Tree Lanes. December 9th all day, from noon ‘til midnight, you can bring family and friends for an epic bowling session with all proceeds benefitting local children. With host Rick Lozano of KTTV Fox 11 News, your participation helps to bring cheer to those in need.

The “no tap” tournament features three games with first place for men and women. The ultimate prize is a cruise from Catalina to Mexico for four days and three nights. More prizes are to be determined, based on generous donations. Choose any time in the 12-hour window to bowl your three games, have a blast, and try your hand at winning a 2017 getaway.

Strike!

All games are donation-based, with a minimum of $100 per person to play. Your donation includes a two-night stay at a newly renovated Las Vegas hotel, and for those who donate $200, you get two nights and airfare for two to Las Vegas. Donors are able to give and receive their prize even without competing.

Squad teams can sign up for a noon, 2:30, 5:00, 7:30 or 10:00pm time slot. If all slot times fill, alternates may be available. For questions, contact the Diamond Bar bowling alley directly at plee@oaktreelanes.net.

Rock City Climbing Gym

November 18th, 2016

 

Looking for a real rush? The Orange County Rock City Climbing Gym offers short-term and day passes to visitors looking to get in a workout—that doesn’t feel like one! Choose from a variety of pricing options, including the full-day bouldering pass with shoe rentals for just $15. Climbing and bouldering courses/routes are available for all levels from beginners to pros.

Enjoy great flow and learn new techniques from one of the many instructors on hand. Resilience and determination is needed, but the goal of Rock City Climbing is to help everyone become stronger and more assured climbers. Bouldering, or climbing without ropes, means steep overhangs and sometimes vertical climbs. The top-out bouldering space has room for all, although it’s recommended to have a buddy for bouldering.

Climb On

Try out top roping, where you can summit walls with a harness attached to a “belayer” (partner on the ground). You can sign up for belaying classes, or get a quickie lesson for under ten minutes. Climbing shoes are highly recommended, though not required. You can get a day pass with harness and shoe rentals for just $20.

For those ready for the next level, check out lead climbing. A special lead wall gives you the biggest challenges, and you’re required to have a skilled belayer with you (instructors are available!). Belayers will need to pass a fast skills test before being allowed to partner with you. Lead climbing classes are available throughout the week.

 

Your Anaheim Disney Thanksgiving Guide

November 17th, 2016

 

Dine in or get a feast to go; choose traditional or select an innovative spin. Thanksgiving in Anaheim has something for everyone, starting with Disneyland! The Grand Ballroom at the Disneyland Hotel hosts a massive buffet with ham, turkey, roast beef, a myriad of sides and too many desserts for any one guest to handle. Children have their own buffet stations, and of course your fellow guests will include favorite characters.

Head over to The Storytellers Café for an impressive dinner buffet with hand-carved beef and turkey, a variety of stuffings and dressings, candied yams and all your favorite Thanksgiving desserts. For those who prefer an upscale prix fixe, Steakhouse 55 is offering a three-course meal with roasted turkey and brioche stuffing, Swiss chard with mushroom gravy, delectable cranberry sauce and special desserts.

A Feast for All

At Carnation Café, you’ll find a slow roasted turkey smothered in bourbon gravy, cranberry and apple stuffing, roasted veggies, and mashed sweet potatoes. Harbour Galley is dishing up their famous turkey tortilla soup featuring south of the border spices. The French Market is famous for their Thanksgiving turkey breast and Andouille sausage stuffing, artisan bread with house cranberry sauce, and market potatoes.

Try the Carthay Circle Restaurant for free-range turkey served alongside poblano chiles and mushroom tamales. Their creamed corn dipped in turkey jus can’t be missed. The Pacific Wharf Café is crafting their annual turkey pot pie soup served in a bread bowl with pumpkin spice bread pudding for dessert.

Where will your Thanksgiving begin?

What Will You Discover at Discovery Cube?

November 12th, 2016

 

On the hunt for a Disney alternative? Discovery Cube, a product of the Discovery Science Foundation, has parks in Orange County and Los Angeles. Dedicated to inspiring and educating in a fun, thrill-packed environment, it’s the ultimate destination for kids of all ages. Early learning, STEM proficiency, environmental stewardship and healthy living might be their core values, but they have a blast making it happen.

At the nearby Orange County Park, ongoing exhibits include Mission Control, the Helicopter Tour, Water Gallery and much more! Check out the Science of Hockey, where you’ll grab a helmet and hockey stick to experience first-hand the science behind the sport. Be the goalie, the shooter, work the broadcast station or get sent to the penalty box.

Exploration Starts Now

The Planetary Research Station is where you’ll explore weather patterns using real tech, see what a catastrophic earthquake really feels like (in a safe space), and check out flight patterns around the globe. NOAA even uses the PRS as an educational and outreach tool, ensuring the latest data and technology is always on hand.

The Rocket Lab, Discovery Theater and Eco Challenge are all waiting for you, too! Visit the OC Park from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. seven days per week. Tickets are available online or at the ticketing booth for general admission and 4D movies.

 

Joy to the World! Free 26-Piece Brass/Percussion Party

November 9th, 2016

 

Get into the swing of the season on December 11th with the free brass and percussion holiday concert, Joy to the World! Hosted by Justin Rudd, the Bay Shore Church is featuring the massive ensemble at 5100 E. The Toledo in nearby Long Beach. Rudd is the director of the Community Action Team (CAT) non-profit, and each year invites all guests to this 90-minute special at 5 p.m.

The concert is free, but tickets are required to ensure there’s enough seating for all. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. for this family-friendly concert, and all proceeds benefit the Long Beach Turkey Trot, also managed by Rudd. You’ll be treated to 26 professional musicians, compliments of the Southern California Brass Consortium.

Spreading Joy and Cheer

Attendees are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items for donation. In-demand items include cereal, macaroni and cheese, canned fruit and peanut butter. All donations go to the Long Beach AIDS Food Store food bank. You can also bring toys as well as treats for local shelter pets under the CAT Operation Santa Paws program.

For only $5, you can also attend the tasting reception and Rudd’s Long Beach Christmas Cookie Contest! Meet the performers, give your opinion on the cookies to be judged, or enter the contest yourself here.

Visit Muzeo

November 3rd, 2016

 

This little-known museum and cultural center packs a big punch, offering exhibits, tours and special events year-round. Nestled in Orange County, it’s easily accessible, and they’re committed to celebrating heritage and cultural diversity via the arts. There are three major traveling exhibitions each year, and all are coupled with special activities and programming. All Carnegie Gallery exhibits are free, and various admission fees are assigned to the other exhibits. Visit Muzeo Tuesday-Sunday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

In November, local Anaheim residents enjoy Free First Thursdays. On November 17, join the Open Book Author Series, a free event that brings writers from around the world to Muzeo. This month features Eric Z. Weintraub, author of Dreams of an American Exile and winner of the Plaza Literary Prize. William Brandon III, editor and designer of numerous publications, also takes the stage. Don’t miss Jon-Barrett Ingels, storyteller and screenwriter, who has passed on the craft to his daughter.

A Cultural Exchange

November 12 welcomes the Art Crawl Experience, a special event from 6 – 10 p.m. where museum visitors can walk, imbibe and explore various pop-up exhibits around the area. Any time of year is a great time to check out the permanent exhibits, including Anaheim: A Walk Through Local History, a historical exhibit in the 1908 Carnegie Library building.

You’ll discover artifacts and slices of history, which pair perfectly with a trip to the Anaheim Heritage Center. It’s now a part of the local public library system, and is right beside the Main Gallery. A rich history space, there are nearly one million artifacts catalogued by local scholars.