Top Orange County Things to Do in July

The Orange County Fair

The OC Fair begins July 14 and runs through August 13.

From the OC Fair and VANS U.S. Open of Surfing to Pageant of the Masters, concerts and more, the hottest events all summer are here. Check out our roundup of the top Orange County July events.

Edited by Laura Okey


ShipKicker Country Music Festival
July 1. See country music favorites including Daniel Bonte & The Bona Fide, Honey County, Jake Parr and headliner Lee Brice at the 3rd Annual ShipKicker Country Music Festival. You’ll recognize Brice’s breakout track “More Than a Memory” (the first single in the history of the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart to debut at No. 1) and his fan-favorite hit “I Drive Your Truck.” The ShipKicker Saloon will keep the entertainment rolling between sets with a full bar, dance floor and additional performances. Enjoy food vendors, a beer garden, cocktails, mechanical bull rides, line dancing lessons, yard games and more. See website for full lineup. Parking lot party, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; $10. Festival 1-11 p.m. Tickets start at $49. 1126 Queens Hwy., Long Beach, 877.342.0738.


The Beach Summer Concert Series

The Beach Summer Concert Series
July 1-2, 22. Experience live beachfront performances from today’s top trending artists while taking in the beauty of Upper Newport Bay. Enjoy beach games, a vendor village, full bars and several food trucks. On Saturday, July 1, see performances from Marshmello, Lema, Niiko & Swae, DJ Lezlee and Jonny Slice B2B SkDJ. The lineup on Sunday, July 2, includes Robin Schulz, TJR, SNBRN and WeAreTreo featuring John Gregory, Arsen and Defy. Later in the month, a surprise artist will be announced. 21 and over. 2-8 p.m. General admission $20-$40; VIP $55-$80. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort, 1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach, 714.624.0515.


House of Blues Drag Brunch
July 1. House of Blues Anaheim presents its World Fabulous Drag Brunch, now taking place on the first Saturday of each month. The event stars Willam—actress, author, YouTube star and former RuPaul’s Drag Racer—in a hilarious new show featuring wild entertainment, mimosas and an all-you-can-eat brunch buffet of Southern-inspired favorites. Featured items include jambalaya, jalapeno-cheese cornbread, collard greens, a prime rib carving station, homemade pastries and more. 11 a.m. $44/pp. 400 West Disney Way, Suite 337, Anaheim, 714.778.2583.


OC Night Market
July 1-2. Experience the original and largest Asian-themed night market in the country. The OC Night Market features hundreds of food, merchandise, crafts, arts, games, music and entertainment attractions in one jam-packed weekend of festivities that appeals to all ages. Hundreds of new and returning chefs will present delectable dishes. F-Sa 4 p.m.-midnight; Su 4 p.m.-11 p.m. $5 admission, $8 parking; kids under 6, free. OC Fair and Event Center, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa.


Movies on the Beach
July 1, 7-8,14-15,21-22, 28-29. Start your weekend festivities with a family movie night at the beach! Bring your own blankets, chairs and jackets and cuddle up for featured flicks like Captain America: Civil War, The Princess Bride, The Iron Giant and more on the big screen. Arrive early and stop by the all new Bay Café on the beach for a new seasonal menu of summer bites and refreshments. Movie starts at dusk. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort, 1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach, 949.729.3863.


Summer Designer Showcase
July 1-2, 7-8, 14-15. Experience a series of exciting trunk shows at Montage Laguna Beach featuring high-end swimwear brands and summer wardrobe must-haves. The first Summer Designer Showcase will feature L*Space by Monica Wise—a collection that includes chic swimwear as well as beach-chic dresses, cover-ups, rompers, sandals, bags and hats. The second, featuring Vitamin A by Amahlia Stevens, will include a sexy collection of swimwear worn by global style-setters such as Rihanna and Scarlett Johansson. The third showcase will feature designs of Lotta Stensson, known for unique boho-chic cover-ups, beach dresses, tunics, ponchos and more. Some of her celebrity clients include Angelina Jolie, Kim Kardashian, Selena Gomez and Katy Perry. The events will take place at Montage’s Swim Shop. 4-6 p.m. Free. Montage Laguna Beach, 30801 Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach, 866.271.6953.



Independence Day on The Back Bay
July 4. Come down to the Back Bay for the annual Fourth of July celebration at Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina. Enjoy a jam-packed day of live music from some of the nation’s top tribute bands, an expanded aquatic fun park, an all-American holiday buffet and a fireworks display to end the evening. The fireworks show will begin at 9 p.m. Gates open at 8 a.m. Entrance fee is $50 per car, street parking available. Beer and wine garden pass (includes premier firework viewing) $40/pp. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina, 1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach, 800.765.7661.



SeaLegs at the Beach: Summer of Music
July 4-7, 8, 28-30. Revel in a weekend of live music at SeaLegs at the Beach—the one-acre beach club will feature artists like Sir Mix-A-Lot, Waka Flocka Flame and Uncle Kracker this July. The live music will continue through the summer with pop-up concerts and a wide range of entertainers. Indulge on an array of scratch-made menu items including poke nachos and chopped summer salad, along with an assortment of wines and brews. Tickets range from $10-$50 depending on the artist. SeaLegs at the Beach, Bolsa Chica State Beach, Huntington Beach.

Festival of Arts Pagaeant of the Masters

Festival of Arts

Festival of Arts
Beginning July 5. See a breathtaking showcase for artists and art lovers. The Festival of Arts includes a wide variety of media such as paintings, photography, printmaking, sculpture, jewelry, handcrafted wood, ceramics, glass and more—all from 140 of South Orange County’s finest artists. Enjoy nightly live music, jazz concerts, guided art tours, demonstrations and art workshops. $5-$12/pp. 650 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, 949.494.1145.


Pageant of the Masters
Beginning July 7. Arguably one of the most unique productions in the entire world, you will be amazed by 90 minutes of tableaux vivants (“living pictures”). In the incredibly faithful re-creations of classical and contemporary works of art, real people pose to look exactly like their counterparts in the original pieces. This summer’s production is themed The Grand Tour. A live narrator guides you through the story of each living picture accompanied by a full orchestra. 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $20. 650 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, 949.494.1145.


OC Parks Presents Annual 2017 Concert Series
July 6, 20. Breathe in the warm summer air while enjoying live music for this year’s outdoor summer concert series. With the series running through August, the concerts will take place at various parks throughout Orange County. Enjoy food trucks, a beer and wine garden and local live music in celebration of the summer season. Bring your own blankets and beach chairs for seating. 6-8 p.m. Free. See website for schedule and locations, 714.973.3180.



Hyatt Regency Newport Beach Summer Concert Series

Hyatt Regency Newport Beach Summer Concert Series
July 7, 14, 21, 28. The annual Hyatt Regency Newport Beach summer concert series is back for four months of world-class music. This July, see artists Herb Alpert and Lani Hall, Chris Isaak, Damien Escobar and more. Indulge in an elegant buffet dinner at SHOR American Seafood Grill, Hyatt Regency’s signature restaurant, for $58 before the concert or at local restaurant Bayside. New this year, Bayside will offer a complimentary shuttle to concert goers. Tickets are available for individual shows or season passes. Individual shows $50-$110. Parking is $20 if purchased in advance and $25 if purchased on site; valet parking is $30 if purchased in advance and $35 if purchased on site. Back Bay Ampitheatre inside Hyatt Regency Newport Beach, 1107 Jamboree Road, Newport Beach,949.360.7800.

Beachfront Cinema

Beachfront Cinema: Beauty and The Beast, Rogue One
July 8, 15.
Take movie night to the next level at the beach. This month, the event features flicks— Beauty and The Beast and Rogue One—on one of the largest inflatable outdoor movie screens in California. Featuring theater-quality projection and sound, you will get the ultimate viewing experience on the sand. Arrive early for pre-movie festivities (live entertainment, games and contests) set before the gorgeous Huntington Beach sunset. Snacks and refreshments are available for purchase from food booths and the beach bar. Pre-movie activities begin at 5 p.m. Showtime approximately 8 p.m. (dusk). $15/pp. VIP package $49 (includes jumbo 2-person bean bag). Huntington State Beach, lifeguard tower 14, Huntington Beach.


J. Cole
July 9. Multiplatinum-selling artist J. Cole is stopping at the Honda Center for his 57-city world tour, 4 Your Eyez Only. Hear hits from J. Cole’s fourth album, the Platinum-certified 4 Your Eyez Only, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart in December. Each of its ten tracks has notched a place on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. 8 p.m. Tickets start at $74. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, 714.778.2583.


Movie Mondays
July 10, 17, 24, 31. Bring the family for a fun-filled evening of activities, outdoor dining and film screenings at Segerstrom Center for the Art’s Movie Monday’s. July’s line-up includes Breakfast at Tiffany’s, The Wiz, Stand and Deliver and Edward Scissorhands. The movies are projected on the side of Segerstrom Hall, so everyone has a great seat. Each Monday will feature different food trucks. Arrive early for audience participation events. Set-up 5:30 p.m.; Movie begins at dusk, approx. 8 p.m. Free. Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, 714.556.2787.


Orange County Fair
July 14-Aug. 13. Indulge in a little bit of deep-fried everything at the Orange County Fair. Bring the whole family and enjoy action sports (rodeo, BMX, pig racing), tribute bands in the Hangar, carnival with rides, La Grande Wheel, livestock competitions, agricultural displays, petting zoo, wine tasting and of course—fried food galore. Concerts at the Pacific Amphitheatre include artists such as The Wailers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Band Perry, Rebelution and more. M-Tu closed, W-F noon-midnight, Sa.-Su. 11 a.m.-midnight. Adults $7-$12; children under 5 free; $10 (cash only) for parking. 88 fair drive, Costa Mesa, 714.708.1500.


Brew Hee Haw Craft Beer Festival

Brew Hee Haw Craft Beer Festival
July 15-16. Enjoy a first-class beer tasting experience during the opening weekend of the OC Fair. Awarded 1st Place at the Western Fairs Association’s Annual Convention for Best Event Within an Event for 2016, the 4th Annual Brew Hee Haw Craft Beer Festival is back. Imbibe on more than 80 craft beers with unlimited tastings while partaking in fun games and listening to catchy music. Event includes free OC Fair admission. Sa noon-4 p.m., 6-10 p.m.; Su noon-4 p.m. $45. 88 fair drive, Costa Mesa, 714.708.1500.


Marvel Universe Live

Marvel Universe Live

Marvel Universe Live
July 20-23. Marvel Universe Live is returning to SoCal with a family-friendly, action-packed live superhero show spectacular. Heroes include Spider Man, Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, Hulk and more. Plus, the menacing Marvel Villains come to life for an all new thrilling adventure. Tickets start at $25. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, 714.778.2583.


John Mayer
July 25. John Mayer’s The Search For Everything world tour lands him at the Honda Center in Anaheim this July. Expect full band, solo acoustic and John Mayer trio sets of music. Hear songs such as “Still Feel Like Your Man,” “Emoji of a Wave,” “Helpless” and more. 7 p.m. Tickets start at $59. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, 714.778.2583.


OC Meets Napa and Mexico
July 29. Celebrate Latino influence in Orange County with a festival of food, wine, live entertainment, activities and more. Latino chefs and Latino vintners and wine makers from Napa and Baja will come together and offer up some of their best bites and sips. Over 60 top Orange County restaurants will participate. VIP reception 6-7 p.m., GA 7-10 p.m. $100-$125. Mission San Juan Capistrano, 26801 Ortega Hwy., San Juan Capistrano, 323.622.2405.

VANS U.S. Open of Surfing

VANS U.S. Open of Surfing
July 29-Aug. 6. Bring your sunscreen and spend the week in Huntington Beach for the worlds largest pro surfing competition. In addition to seeing some of the world’s most respected surf, skate and BMX professionals, events include a beach-lifestyle festival, skate and BMX events, autograph signings and community movie nights. Main street and Pacific Coast Hwy., Huntington Beach.


Lionel Richie and Mariah Carey
July 30. Multiplatinum-selling artists and multiple Grammy Award winners Lionel Richie and Mariah Carey are touring together for the first time. Some of Richie’s mega hits include “Endless Love,” “All Night Long,” and “We Are the World.” Carey, the best-selling female artist of all time with 220 million records sold, has written all but one of her 18 Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 singles. Among them are “Fantasy,” “Always Be My Baby,” “Hero,” and “We Belong Together.” 7 p.m. Tickets start at $39. Honda Center, 2695 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim, 714.778.2583.


Sawdust Art Festival
Ongoing. See works by 200 Laguna Beach artists—glass, painting, jewelry, ceramics, clothing and textiles, sculpture, scrimshaw, photography—plus demos, kids activities, outdoor cafes and live music in eucalyptus grove. Daily 10 a.m.-10 p.m. (closes 6 p.m. on July 4). $4-$9. Sawdust Art Festival, 935 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, 949.494.3030.

Laguna Art-A-Fair

Laguna Art-A-Fair

Laguna Art-A-Fair
Ongoing. Juried art festival displays works by 125 artists in all mediums, including painting, drawings, photography, digital art, mixed media, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, glass and wood. Live entertainment on weekends. Su–Th 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; F-Sa 10 a.m.-10 p.m. (closes 6 p.m. on July 4 and Aug 28). $6-$8. 777 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, 949.494.4514.


Summer Groove & Grub
Ongoing. Head to the beach and celebrate the weekend with delicious fare and live entertainment. Pete’s Sunset Grille at Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach will offer Friday night taco buffets and Saturday barbecue accompanied by various live rock, hip-hop and blues musicians. 7-10 p.m. Adults $19.95; children 4-12 $9.95. Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach, 21500 Pacific Coast Hwy., Huntington Beach, 714.698.1234.


Pirate Coast Paddling Glow Tours
Ongoing. Spend your summer evenings on an LED light-adorned paddleboard or kayak at the bay. Pirate Coast Paddle Co. leads nighttime adventures on Friday and Saturday nights through Labor Day. See marine life only visible at night on this unique excursion. Enjoy cocktails and dinner at Back Bay Bistro afterwards. 8 p.m. F-Sa; call for schedule. $45/pp. 1131 Back Bay Drive, Newport Beach, 949.278.0011.


Knott’s Soak City Waterpark
Ongoing. Catch a break from the heat in the newly expanded water park, Knott’s Soak City. Orange County’s largest water park will debut two water slide towers—Shore Break will tower over seven stories and offer six different thrilling water slide experiences. Four of the slides on the 60-foot tall tower will start with guests climbing inside an Aqua-Launch chamber where they will wait for the floor to drop out from underneath their feet, sending them into a high-speed, almost vertical free fall through a series of flat loops and S-curves in a translucent flume. Shore Break will also feature dueling tube slides that will zip riders through an enchanting series of drops and turns. If you’re looking for something more relaxing, try the lazy rivers or Tidal Wave Bay. See website for operating hours as they vary and are subject to change. Knott’s Berry Farm, 8039 Beach Blvd., Buena Park, 714.220.5200.