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Travel Costa Mesa Blog

Archive for June, 2017

FREE THINGS TO DO THIS SUMMER IN ORANGE COUNTY

Posted on June 30, 2017 | 7:24am

summer in Costa Mesa

Costa Mesa is Orange County’s City of the Arts™, featuring free things to do all summer – live performances at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, public art and sculptures throughout the city and eclectic art galleries featuring both world-renowned and local, up-and-coming artists’ talents. There are endless possibilities for free things to do, including getting your fill of arts and culture in Costa Mesa. Look beyond Costa Mesa, and you’ll see that Orange County makes a serious commitment to exposing its culture and landscape, while entertaining its residents and visitors with free things to do all summer long.

 

Laguna Beach Free Things to Do

Hit the Orange County Beaches

Toes in the sand, cool ocean breeze and endless sunshine…it’s what Southern California is known for. What better way to spend a day soaking up the rays, taking a leisurely walk along the shoreline, or playing some beach volleyball? All of this is free, and a way to spend a day, or two, along the 42 miles of Orange County’s coastline from Dana Point Harbor to Laguna Beach, Newport Beach to “Surf City USA” Huntington Beach, both of the latter neighboring Costa Mesa. There are endless ways to spend the day in these seaside communities, including art festivals, surf competitions and events throughout the year.

 

Costa Mesa Line Free Things to Do

Free City Line to get you around

Costa Mesa is already an easy city to get around, and many of the shopping and dining experiences are within a short walk of the city’s hotels. A new route of the city’s free shuttle service is making it even more convenient to get to some of the best restaurants, South Coast Plaza for retail therapy, and various local centers for nightlife and outdoor entertainment. This service runs from approximately 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., 7 days per week. Learn more about Costa Mesa’s free shuttle service and the local stops, as well as a low-cost option to ride from Costa Mesa to Disneyland for the day.

 

CHILL OUT WITH LIVE MUSIC

 The Camp Live Music Free Things to Do in Costa Mesa

Summer Sounds at The CAMP

Every Sunday from 12 – 2 p.m., local musicians play a free live show in the courtyard in front of SEED People’s Market at The CAMP in Costa Mesa. Enjoy the warm Southern California weather and relax at one of the first-known environmentally friendly retail and dining centers. At The CAMP, you will find a variety of culinary delights like Native Foods, offering gourmet vegetarian cuisine or Old Vine Café with fresh, locally sourced organic cuisine in the style of southern Italy, and an incredible brunch served daily until 3 p.m. So come on out, grab a bite and stake a spot at one of the picnic tables, then kick back in a hammock and enjoy an afternoon chilling out with the locals.

 

SOCO After Dark Live Music Mondays

On the last Monday of each month, step outside to enjoy live music in the courtyard at SOCO and The OC Mix. South Coast Collection, also known as SOCO Costa Mesa, defines the ultimate home design and culinary experience in Southern California. SOCO is home to more than 70 specifically curated showrooms, restaurants and stores. Make it a date or a fun evening with friends and enjoy Happy Hour at We Olive Wine Bar while listening to the lively music by the swing band Riff Raff.  For any decorator, designer, chef or creative mind in Orange County, SOCO is a shopping destination that is sure to inspire.

 

Summer Music Series at The Triangle

Celebrating its 25th anniversary, The Triangle kicks off a weekly music series on July 12 from 5 to 8 p.m., with live music continuing every Wednesday evening through August 23. The live music, held in the upper level courtyard between Saddle Ranch Chop House and La Vida Cantina, will feature guitarists, duos and solo artists performing a variety of genres including “Back to the Beach” classics, hits of the 80s and 90s and reggae.

 

MOVIES UNDER THE STARS

 Free Movie Mondays in Costa Mesa

Movie Mondays

Families, friends and visitors from all over can claim their space at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts complex to enjoy a film under the stars as it is projected on the side of the concert hall. Spend a casual evening full of fun-filled activities, picnic dinners or specialties from popular food trucks and watch one of five fan-favorite films on consecutive Mondays in July and August. Come as early as 5:30 p.m., bring beach chairs or blankets, snacks and drinks and get comfortable with fellow moviegoers starting at dusk (approximately 8 p.m.).

 

Saturdays at Orange County Great Park

If you haven’t experienced Orange County’s Great Park, it’s a former military air base in the City of Irvine, designed for sporting events, concerts, farmers markets and community activities and is stunning venue to see a movie on the lawn. Head over a little early and enjoy the carousel, aviation museum and food vendors. Look out for the big orange balloon to help guide you to the venue, and you can even take a ride up in the sky to see Orange County’s skyline.

San Clemente Ocean Festival

San Clemente Ocean Festival

Explore “The Greatest Show on Surf” as lifeguards, locals and visitors take to the beach to participate in activities to promote and support ocean safety, and the environment. During this two-day event on July 15 & 16, participants and spectators of all ages will enjoy surf skiing and rescue relays, as well as Stand Up Paddleboard competitions and a Dolphin Dash kids run on the sand. This event is a perfect opportunity to spend the day and experience San Clemente’s beaches and pier.

Los Angeles Charger training camp

Los Angeles Chargers Training Camp

The Los Angeles Chargers are now calling Costa Mesa home! The team will kick off the 2017 season with its training camp at the Jack Hammett Sports Complex in Costa Mesa (2750 Fairview Road). Practices are free and open to the public between July 30 and August 22. No tickets are required and walk-ups are welcome; however, fans are encouraged to reserve free bleacher seating passes – available on a first-come, first-served basis beginning July 1. Don’t miss exciting practice times between the Chargers and New Orleans Saints on August 22, the week before their exhibition game. If you plan to attend the OC Fair during your visit, July 21 is the day to also get up close with The Chargers as we celebrate Costa Mesa Day at the Fair.

California Scenario Noguchi Gardens

Costa Mesa Artwalk

Whether you have a special appreciation for art and culture, or you’re looking to learn more about the heart of Orange County’s City of the Arts™, take a free walking tour of the Costa Mesa Artwalk. Get a copy of the easy-to-follow map and start exploring the 15 public art pieces and spaces in and around the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, including the Unity Bridge connecting you to luxury shopping at South Coast Plaza, and the beautiful Neptune Water Spouts fountain flowing in the lobby at The Westin South Coast Plaza. One of the lovely hidden gems of the city is California Scenario, a 1.6-acre outdoor sculpture garden created by Isamu Noguchi with native California landscapes and vegetation. With some of the finest visual arts installations and performing arts venues in the world, it’s easy to see why Costa Mesa is The City of the Arts™.

Art Crawl Experience in Anaheim

Anaheim Art Crawl Experience

Known to locals as the Downtown Anaheim A.C.E. Festival, arts and culture enthusiasts can walk, crawl or climb aboard the Anaheim Resort Transit (ART) for complimentary rides throughout Anaheim’s Art Crawl Experience (A.C.E.) on August 19 from 6-10 p.m. You’ll see art in public places, street artisans, pop-up galleries, and the brick-and-mortar galleries. And, along the way there are plenty of places to dine or grab a bite from one of the gourmet food trucks along the route.

Segerstrom Pioneering Innovation Exhibit at South Coast Plaza Costa Mesa

South Coast Plaza’s 50th Anniversary: Segerstrom Pioneering Spirit: An American Dream Exhibit

One of the best-known shopping destinations in California is South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa. Easily accessible at the heart of the city, and a short walk from Costa Mesa hotels, South Coast Plaza welcomes 22 million visitors each year. As a leader in luxury brands, one-of-a-kind boutiques and dozens of acclaimed restaurants, South Coast Plaza in Southern California is where many fashion trends and runway-only creations make their debut. In celebration of the vision for this shopping experience that began more than 50 years ago, built upon the Segerstrom family’s lima bean fields, a free exhibit has been created and is on display in Jewel Court at South Coast Plaza through July 31. Grab a latte and dig into the roots of this historical landmark.

 US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach

Vans US Open of Surfing

Every summer, “Surf City USA” is transformed to the world’s ultimate surfing arena for nine days of surfing and surf culture in Huntington Beach, California. This free event is showcases more than 300 world-class surfers competing in the Vans U.S. Open of Surfing along by BMX riders and skateboarders exhibiting their talents in arenas on the sand. If you’re in Southern California between July 29 and August 9, this is an event you won’t want to miss.

 

Thursday art walk in Laguna Beach

Laguna Art Walk

In the coastal city about 20 minutes south of Costa Mesa, you’ll find another extraordinary arts community in Laguna Beach. Head down the coast on the first Thursday of the month to experience Laguna’s vibrant arts scene by joining the free First Thursday Art Walk from 6 to 9 p.m. where you’ll gain a understanding and appreciation arts in Orange County.

 

Free Yoga in The Treehouse in Costa Mesa

Free Yoga at The Treehouse

On Sunday, July 19 and August 13, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. head over to the Treehouse to stretch out, get centered and find your Zen at The CAMP in Costa Mesa with free yoga by The Yoga Mat.

 

Will you spend an evening at a movie, the day at one of Orange County’s beautiful beaches, or exploring Costa Mesa’s art scene? You’ve got all summer and there are plenty of free things to do, so get out here and have fun!

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Posted in Events, Misc, Music & Art, Play

Beef…it’s what’s for Father’s Day in Costa Mesa!

Posted on June 14, 2017 | 10:33am

If your dad enjoys a juicy cut of steak, grilled to perfection, give him a break this Father’s Day and treat him to one of the most decadent and flavorful steaks in Orange County. It’s hard to decide which is “best,” but we have a few recommendations to help you choose, and you won’t go wrong whether you’re looking for fine dining, family-style tapas, dinner or brunch – these restaurants are ready to welcome you on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 18, 2017.

 

Mastro’s Steakhouse is a sophisticated and classy steakhouse offering dry-aged, hand-cut prime selections of meat served on its signature 400-degree steak plate, for just the right preparation. Featuring an A5 grade Japanese Wagyu New York Strip and a decadent 33 oz. “Chef’s Cut” Tomahawk Chop, there’s no doubt your craving will be satisfied at this steakhouse, especially when accompanied by side of lobster mashed potatoes and a carefully selected wine pairing to complete the meal. Treat dad on Father’s Day; he’ll be in heaven, and the family will enjoy being treated to a very special dining experience, with live music nightly. Open for dinner beginning at 3 p.m. Book a table online.

 

 

AnQi by House of AN $1 Beers and 1 lb. Tomahawk Ribeye

From 11:30 a.m. – 9 p.m.

AnQi’s architecturally designed contemporary space is a treat in itself when dining out on a special occasion like Father’s Day. AnQi’s menu of Asian-inspired dishes with an American flair delivers appetizers like filet mignon potstickers and their famous garlic noodles made with Mama An’s secret recipe. On Father’s Day, AnQi is offering an impressive 1 lb. tomahawk ribeye chop; Szechwan lamb raviolis; Korean fried chicken wings; a salt and pepper pork chop and mile-high chocolate mocha cake with cookies ’n cream ice cream for dessert. Dad will love the $1 dollar beer selection available as part of this special menu. AnQi’s full à la carte menu will also be available all day. Prices vary per selection; specialty menu $15-$88 (exclusive of tax and gratuity) For reservations, call 714.557.5679.

 

Pueblo

Brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. | Dinner from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.

At Pueblo, the goal is to bring people together and by featuring a menu of shareable plates. A Father’s Day celebration is perfect to bring the family together and toast to dad. Pueblo offers a tapas-plate Sunday brunch, and is also open for dinner. Having been voted one of the ‘best charcuterie platters’ in Orange County, where guests can choose from 6 different cured Spanish meats or even jamon iberico, this is a perfect platter to share with the group. On Father’s Day, Pueblo will be presenting a special menu with selection of meat along with a new dessert for chocolate lovers – a warm chocolate brownie with house-made toasted coconut ice cream. Reservations are not required, but can be made by calling 714.340.5775.

 

Vaca

5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Chef Amar Santana is known for his aged steaks, carefully selected cheeses and cured meats from his charcuterie bar, and a variety of Spanish wines. A favorite starter is the Canelon de Pollo (smoked chicken cannelloni with foie gras and sherry reduction); it will melt in your mouth. To really indulge, take one look at the Carne section of the menu and you’ll see prime selections of beef like Japanese Kobe or the grass-fed NY Strip steak. If that’s not enough to tempt you, check out this preparation by Chef Amar himself. Reservations are highly recommended. Call 714.463.6060.

 

 

The Capital Grille at South Coast Plaza

11:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Especially for Father’s Day, Capital Grille is serving an off-the-menu item; it’s a mouthwatering Tomahawk bone-in ribeye. Or if dad prefers a perfectly grilled burger, try Capital Grille’s Signature Cheeseburger – a juicy, flavorful blend of chopped sirloin, smoked bacon and onions. It’s one of the best burgers in town, so be sure to get a reservation to enjoy a delicious meal and a beautiful bottle of wine from their award-winning wine list on this special day with dad.

 

Nothing says “We love you, Dad!” quite like a prime steak! Where will you be dining for Father’s Day in Costa Mesa?

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Posted in Events, Food, Misc