Costa Mesa Fun Facts
Costa Mesa Fun Facts
The original name of Costa Mesa was Harper, which was often confused with Haperville, a nearby town. City residents held a contest and offered a prize of $25 to the person who came up with the best new name for the city. Miss Alice Plumer won the contest with the name “Costa Mesa” (meaning “coastal tableland” in Spanish). On July 16, 1920, Harper officially became Costa Mesa, California.
Deeply entrenched in the Southern California surf culture, three of the top surfwear and surf accessory companies are headquartered in Costa Mesa: Hurley, Volcom and RCVA.
Costa Mesa was incorporated into Orange County in 1953 and has a total of 15.5 square miles and a population of 109,060.
The Diego Sepulveda Adobe, also known as the Estancia, is the oldest permanent structure in Costa Mesa. The Estancia was built around 1820 as shelter for herdsman from the Mission San Juan Capistrano.
Costa Mesa is located 37 miles south of Los Angeles and 88 miles north of San Diego, which makes it an ideal Southern California destination.
The 55 Freeway, also known as the Costa Mesa freeway, was originally known as Legislative Route 43. The 55 received the first carpool lane in Orange County in 1985.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts is the largest nonprofit arts organization in Orange County. The renowned performing arts center is named for the Segerstrom family, longtime Orange County residents who donated the land for the 14-acre campus and more than $50 million dollars to fund the arts complex.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts offers the world's leading dance companies, Broadway shows and is the home of 3 resident Orange County companies: Pacific Symphony, the Philharmonic Society and Pacific Chorale. The arts complex also includes Costa Mesa's Tony Award-winning resident theater, South Coast Repertory.
Before the center was known as the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, it was the Orange County Performing Arts Center.
South Coast Plaza is the largest shopping center in California, with over 250 retailers representing the highest concentration of design fashion retail in the United States.
South Coast Plaza opened in 1967 and is located in a plot of land where lima beans were once grown with Sears as its oldest tenant.
The weekly farmers’ market at the SoCo Collection was voted the best in Orange County.
The LAB Anti-Mall is dedicated to unique businesses and restaurants. LAB is an acronym for “little American business” and has supported small, local business for over 20 years.
The Orange County Fair has been held annually since 1890 and hosted in several different Orange County cities including Anaheim, Santa Ana and Huntington Beach. Costa Mesa has been its home since 1953, and it is one of the top 10 largest fairs in the United States.
The OC Fair’s La Grande Ferris Wheel is a replica of the prominent fixture erected between the Louvre and Champs Elysees for the millennium celebration in Paris, France.
The fair's biggest ride, La Grande Wheel, is the largest traveling Ferris wheel in the Western hemisphere and is 15 stories high. The ride is so large, it takes three weeks to assemble. At 200 metric tons, it requires a steel-reinforced pad beneath it to keep it from sinking.
The city of Costa Mesa has 29 parks, all equipped with picnic shelters, restrooms, picnic areas and playgrounds.
Costa Mesa has a Mediterranean climate with warm, dry summers and cool winters. With its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the temperature do not fluctuate as rapidly as other parts of the state. On average, August is the hottest month and December is the coldest.