(Credit: Star Wars Celebration)

(Credit: Star Wars Celebration)


2015 aims to be a stellar year in Orange County. In addition to the return of regular OC favorites including the Pageant of the Masters, Festival of the Arts, Tall Ships Festival, U.S. Open of Surfing, and the Festival of Whales, the area will play host to a few very special events including the return of Star Wars Celebration, an area first since 2007. Don’t miss Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration, a salute to 60 years of magical moments.
image: star wars celebration

image: star wars celebration


Star Wars Celebration
Anaheim Convention Center
800 W Katella Ave.
Anaheim, CA 92802
www.starwarscelebration.com
April 16 – 19, 2015

For the ultimate Star Wars fan experience, head to Celebration, dubbed Lucasfilm’s love letter to fans. This four day event, the first in the LA area since 2007, comes on the cusp of the release of the newest Star Wars film release, and is sure to entice fans from galaxies far, far away. Visitors can enjoy screenings, celebrity guests, autograph sessions, workshops, and sneak peeks of future Star Wars franchise developments.

(Credit: Disney Parks)

(Credit: Disney Parks)


Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration
1313 S Harbor Blvd.
Anaheim, CA 92802
www.disneyland.com
Dates TBD, Spring- Winter 2015

Although firm details have yet to be announced, Disneyland will celebrate its 60th anniversary this year with a Diamond Celebration, saluting 60 years of magic in the OC and beyond. Launching this spring, the celebration is sure to be a major event in Orange County; the current Southern California ticket offer will make this anniversary event more accessible to local residents.

(Credit: Dana Point Festival of Whales)

(Credit: Dana Point Festival of Whales)


Festival of Whales
Dana Point Harbor
Dana Point, CA 92629
www.dpfestivalofwhales.com
March 7-8, 14-15, 2015

Celebrating the roundtrip migration of the California Gray Whale, who makes their annual pilgrimage from Alaska to Baja and back each year, the Dana Point Festival of Whales includes not only exceptional whale-watching tours, but also an art show, street fair, parade, and sand sculpture competition, among other events and opportunities. Dana Point, ideally situated along the coast for prime whale spotting, brings in nearly 100,000 visitors to the yearly festival, which has continued the tradition for the past 44 years. Don’t miss the Polynesian cultural experience, classic and vintage boat exhibits, learn-to-sail or paddle classes, and kids activities.

(Credit: Photo courtesy of the Ocean Institute / Cliff Wassmann)

(Credit: Photo courtesy of the Ocean Institute / Cliff Wassmann)


Toshiba Tall Ships Festival
24200 Dana Point Harbor Dr.
Dana Point, CA 92629
(949) 496-2274
www.tallshipsfestival.com
Dates TBD, September 2015

The Toshiba Tall Ships Festival is the largest gathering of tall ships on the West Coast. Spectators can enjoy the beauty and splendor from the shore (even while dining at some of Dana Point’s best restaurants), or you can even sail on one of the many tall ships for their parade of sail or cannon battles offered on weekends! Living-history encampments bring pirate life alive through role-play and entertainment offerings. Kids will love exploring the Maritime Barn where they can learn how to scrimshaw, tie knots, and even make rope!

(credit: Vans US Open of Surfing/Russo)

(credit: Vans US Open of Surfing/Russo)


Vans U.S. Open of Surfing
Huntington Beach Pier
Main Street & Pacific Coast Highway
Hunting Beach, CA 92648
www.vansusopenofsurfing.com

The Vans US Open of Surfing hits the Orange County beach late July each year with a full lineup of competitions, exhibitions, activities, and fun on the sand by the Huntington Beach Pier. In addition to surfing, you can also catch air on the concrete as you watch BMX and skate competitions. Nighttime movies, sponsor booths, and plenty of surfing and extreme sport swag add family friendly opportunities to the competition lineup.

(Credit: Pageant of the Masters)

(Credit: Pageant of the Masters)


Festival of the Arts/Pageant of the Masters
650 Laguna Canyon Rd.
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
(949) 494-1145
www.foapom.com
July 5 – August 31, 2015

Summers in Laguna Beach mean a city-wide focus on art. The Festival of the Arts, California’s finest summer art event, continues a Laguna Beach tradition since 1932. The Pageant of the Masters presents a “tableaux vivant,” or living replications of classical works of art, staged nightly in an outdoor amphitheater under the stars, complete with live orchestration and original score. The 2015 Pageant will explore the ” The Pursuit of Happiness” theme. The Sawdust Art Festival, although separate from the Festival of the Arts Events, runs at the same time.

Katie Bodell is the Blog Editor for Trekaroo, the largest family travel website in the U.S. She is also a freelance writer, a happy wife to her best friend, and a mom to three sweet California girls. See more on: Trekaroo | CheapOair | Google+ | Twitter.

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