Orange County is the hub for amazing street, art, dance and film festivals. A great way to discover and explore the culture in Southern California and to get into the spirit of the spring season is by attending these celebrated events. This season, enjoy some of the best of these festivals Orange County has to offer.
Canyon Grill at Aliso Creek Inn
31106 S. Coast Highway
Laguna Beach, CA
Through April 17, doors open at 5 p.m., show starts at 6 p.m.
Enjoy a night of great jazz music and food at the Aliso Creek Inn. It is important to purchase tickets ahead of time as seats are assigned according to the date of purchase and the size of the group. On April 3, enjoy the sounds of the Jeff Hamilton Trio and on April 17, the Joshua White Trio, a group that won second place standing at the 2011 prestigious Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition and has phenomenal technique. Enjoy a different kind of night out in Orange County and with great drinks and live music.
Related: 2013 OC Spring Theater Preview
Newport Beach Film Festival
4540 Campus Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
April 25 to May 2
With more than 300 films from more than 30 countries during a span of seven days, the Newport Beach Film Festival brings the international film scene to Orange County as a forum for cultural understanding. The festival was founded in 1999 and traditionally screens about 100 feature length films. Some notable films that have premiered at the festival include “Crash,” “(500) Days of Summer,” “The Cove” and “Pieces of April.” Many Hollywood industry notables have been honored at the event, including Aaron Sorkin and Haskell Wexler. The opening night gala held at the Bloomingdale’s Courtyard in Fashion Island will be held Thursday, April 25. Tickets are available for purchase at the link provided above.
Orange County Fairgrounds
88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA
April 19 to 21
This family-friendly event held at the Orange County Fairgrounds holds many festivities and attractions that will entertain people of all ages. A few activities to look out for are the Reptile Show, Bird Show, Dog Training with Renee, Splash Dogs and Police and Dog Protection Demonstrations. This event gets manufacturers, retailers, groomers, veterinarians, pet enthusiasts and many more together to educate and have fun about every kind of companion animals.
University of California, Irvine
510 Aldrich hall #5
Irvine, CA 92617
April 20 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This spring event held at the University of California, Irvine features a full day of outdoor festivities including an open house, a car show, and much more. This tradition is one of the oldest of UCI traditions and is a student-run festival in Aldrich Park that has food, games and entertainment. The events are free and parking is complimentary for the community to come all day. Last year’s event featured more than 125 student groups from the university, live entertainment, carnival rides and much more.
Related: OC’s Best Museum Exhibits In 2013
Lucy’s Legacy: The Hidden Treasure Of Ethiopia
2002 N. Main St.
Santa Ana, CA 92706
Through April 28
If you have ever wondered about the origins of human life, you’ll love the opportunity to look at some of the oldest and most complete adult fossils for a limited time this spring. Lucy was discovered in Ethiopia during the late 20th century. By having a link for scientists to trace the effects of evolution, “Lucy’s Legacy” will help us understand how human beings have become what we are today. The Houston Museum of Natural Science helped organize this international exhibit.
Elle Toussi is a freelance writer covering all things Orange County. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.