Over The Top Mommy

Family Fun

Knott’s Announces the Return of Knott’s Beary Tales Attraction for Summer 2020

This is not a sponsored post. all opinions are my own.

I am SO excited to hear the latest news from Knott’s Berry Farm! One of my childhood favorites is returning to the park this summer: Knott’s Bear-y Tales: Return to the Fair! Obviously it’s going to be a modernized version as it returns as an all-new adventure in Summer 2020.

As part of the 100th anniversary celebration at Knott’s Berry Farm, this 4D interactive dark ride will bring to life a continuation of the story from the classic attraction. Guests will climb aboard ride vehicles equipped with “Jelly Blasters” and be immersed in the world of the Bear-y Tales characters to try and recover the stolen boysenberry pies from Crafty Coyote and his brood of pups. Families can ride through and take in the expansive surroundings or compete for the hightest score. With all of the classic scenes reimagined including the Pie Factory, Frog Forest, and County Fair, this will be a journey like never experienced before!

Does anyone else remember this ride? Am I dating myself here? Well, stay tuned for more news as Summer 2020 nears!

Some images are property of Knott’s Berry Farm and used with permission. 

“Mickey’s Happy Holidays” Joins Holiday Entertainment Lineup at Disney California Adventure

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. 
With the Holdiays at Disneyland Resort just around the corner beginning November 8, there’s more exciting news for guests visiting the resort. Just announced today, “Mickey’s Happy Holidays” will be a part of the holiday entertainment lineup at Disney California Adventure. This character celebration will include Mickey Mouse and pals. Guests will dance and sing along with Mickey Mouse and friends during the all new *“Mickey’s Happy Holidays” celebration. Mickey is joined by favorite Disney and Pixar characters as they dance along to high-energy music, led by the merry rhythms of the Holiday Toy Drummers. Mickey, Minnie, Chip n’ Dale, Goofy and Clarabelle all don new Festival of Holidays attire, specifically for the “Mickey’s Happy Holidays” celebration. The Country Bears and the Pixar characters also sport fun seasonal overlays for the show.
Returning in 2019 is the dazzling “World of Color – Season of Light,” a holiday-themed production of this nighttime spectacular that features lights, lasers, water, fire and hundreds of fountains bringing animation to life.
Disney Festival of Holidays brings the spirit of the season to life through lively entertainment, festive food and beverage and special traditions. Children will enjoy craft stations and everyone will appreciate the delicious food at Festival Foods Marketplace, featuring a mix of holiday dishes and beverages that bridge many diverse cultures and family traditions.

The Holiday Sunset Concerts features new music this year from The Suffragettes, who rock holiday chart-topping hits from favorite musical artists (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday nights). This new band joins the explosive energy of Phat Cat Swinger, the West Coast’s “Little-Big Band” that plays a swinging selection of irresistible holiday music, presented with a fresh new twist (Wednesday through Saturday nights).

Additional Festival of Holidays entertainment includes musical and dance performances by Mostly Kosher, Blue13 Dance Company, The Sound and the GRAMMY® Award-winning Mariachi Divas.

The Three Caballeros host the popular “Disney ¡Viva Navidad! Street Party” celebration, featuring folklórico and samba dancers, live musicians, and Mickey and Minnie in their fiesta best.

Disney Festival of Holidays begins on November 8 and continues through January 6, 2020. For more information, including showtimes, pleae visit

*“Mickey’s Happy Holidays” will run twice daily, with show moments at Paradise Gardens Park and Carthay Circle.

Some images and logo are property of Disneyland Resort and used with permission. 

Celebrate the Season at Knott’s Merry Farm Beginning November 22

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. 
It’s almost time to celebrate the merriest of seasons at Knott’s Berry Farm as the park wondrously transforms into Knott’s Merry Farm, a Christmas celebration for all ages. You can come spend the most wonderful time of the year with your family at Knott’s Merry Farm enjoying thrilling holiday attractions, live entertainment, a Christmas Crafts Village, festive food, lavish holiday decorations, and nightly snow in Ghost Town, all beginning November 22!

I feel so lucky to live in Southern California where I can celebrate the holidays while still enjoying the beautiful sunny weather outside. I am all about making the most of this time of year with my family and Knott’s Merry Farm is an annual tradition for us. I’m not even sure if I’m most excited about the festive treats, the special holiday entertainment, visiting Santa (because he is there, too.) or just going on all of my favorite rides? Also, I get so excited to see what’s new each year.

Here are the special entertainment offerings you’ll find this year at Knott’s Merry Farm:

“Merry Christmas, Snoopy!” Ice Show (in the Charles M. Schulz Theatre) -Snoopy, the Peanuts, and a cast of world-class ice skaters perform in the spectacular ice show, “Merry Christmas, Snoopy!” in the Charles M. Schulz Theatre. During the show, filled with whimsy and spectacular skating, Snoopy enjoys all of the best parts of the season, including trimming the Christmas tree, awaiting Santa’s arrival, and attending the festive Christmas Ball! “Merry Christmas, Snoopy!” is performed on select days.“Home for the Holidays” (at the Calico Mine Stage) -Home for the Holidays is a joyous music review filled with singing, dancing and merriment of Christmas days of yore, including some of the best-loved perennial holiday tunes including, “There’s No Place Like Home For The Holidays,” “Sleigh Ride,” “Jingle Bells,” “Here We Come A-Caroling,” and many more. The Calico Mine Stage depicts a Winter Wonderland directly out of a Currie & Ives painting and is the ideal version of an old-fashioned holiday dream. The year is 1915 and the sounds and feelings of the holiday season surround the air. Home for the Holidays is the story of family, friends and holiday traditions.

“A Peanuts Guide to Christmas” (at the Camp Snoopy Theater) – The Peanuts Gang offer their take and unique wisdom on surviving the holidays, while singing you a mashup of their favorite holiday tunes. After the show, head right next door to the Peanuts Meet and Greet Area to take a picture with your favorite character.“Charles Dickens’A Christmas Carol” and “Marley’s Wings” (in the Bird Cage Theater)- Knott’s melodrama company brings to life Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and Marley’s Wings performances available on select dates during Knott’s Merry Farm. In Marley’s Wings, the Ghost of Jacob Marley returns to a wonderful new holiday musical that is destined to become a classic! One year ago, Marley appeared and appealed to Ebenezer Scrooge to mend his ways lest he suffer eternal torment in the form of chains forged by a life of greed and avarice. If Scrooge could truly change his ways for an entire year, Marley would not only be free of his chains; he would also gain his bona fide Angel’s Wings! On the surface, Ebenezer seems to have seen the light and made the necessary adjustments, with one glaring exception. Scrooge is struggling with finding and holding the true meaning of Christmas in his heart. He must grasp this essential message by midnight, or Marley will be grounded for all eternity. The Bird Cage piano will come alive with great new songs like “Raise the Rafters,” “Christmas in Heaven,” and “The Bah Hum Bug” to name a few. Marley is on a mission! With the help of this wonderful new musical score and audience energy, Scrooge’s transformation unfolds before our eyes. Will it be soon enough to deliver Marley’s wings? The clock is ticking…

Calico Saloon Christmas Show (Calico Saloon) – Cameo Kate and Dakota Dan invite you to their musical turn of the century holiday celebration. Head into the Calico Saloon, grab a boysenberry beer or sarsaparilla and watch a classical Old West revue show. Get ready for plenty of laughs and audience interaction in this toe-tapping, knee-slapping journey.

Snow and Glow Show (in Calico Ghost Town) – Every night during Merry Farm, when the sun sets on the Farm, the buildings and paths in Ghost Town’s Main Street and School House Road are filled with glow and snow! Thousands of sparkling lights dance to the beat of Christmas music while snow gently falls in this spectacular one-of-a-kind moment.

Calico Carolers (strolling throughout Ghost Town) – Be transported back in time to a Victorian Christmas by the Calico Carolers, Knott’s own vocal quartet, as they perform the songs of the season throughout Ghost Town. Warm up your vocal chords and join in on the fun by singing along to both classic and contemporary Christmas music presented in a timeless way.

Festive Eats and Treats at Knott’s Merry Farm
Every holday season, it seems like the Knott’s culinary team steps up their festive treats game even more. At Knott’s Merry Farm, you’ll not only find traditional favorites such as Mrs. Claus’ milk & cookies, hot cocoa with candy cane topping, roasted nuts, and but there are also offerings such as tamales, Christmas pizza, and candy cane churros!Knott’s is the perfect place to spend many a day together with friends and/or family creating new memories together, which is a great reason to grab a 2020 Knott’s Season Pass. They make great holiday gifts and include one free visit to Knott’s in 2019, unlimited visits in 2020 with no blackout dates, discounts on select food and merchandise,  and access to exciting year-round seasonal events.For more information about Knott’s Season Passes, including information about their payment plans, please visit knotts.com.

Celebrate the Holiday Season at Disneyland Resort from Nov. 8, 2019 to Jan. 6, 2020

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.
It’s November 1st, so in my book, it’s perfectly acceptable to now start talking about Christmas and all things surrounding the holidays. I don’t think I’ve ever been more ready for the Holidays at The Disneyland Resort than I am now! This year, the resort will be transformed into the Merriest Place on Earth and guests can experience the holidays beginning Friday, November 8, 2019 through Jan. 6, 2020.

Resort guests will be dazzled by the return of “World of Color – Season of Light,” a holiday-themed production of this nighttime spectacular that features lights, lasers, water, fire and hundreds of fountains bringing animation to life. Also returning are guest-favorite holiday experiences and entertainment, including Disney Festival of Holidays – which honors the sights, sounds and tastes of Christmas/Navidad, Hanukkah, Diwali, Kwanzaa and Three Kings Day (Jan. 3-6) – and the “Believe … in Holiday Magic” fireworks spectacular. Guests may even partake in a “Frozen” adventure as they encounter Anna and Elsa in the theme parks, just in time to celebrate the release of Disney’s new animated film, “Frozen 2,” in theaters Nov. 22, 2019.

Guests plan their seasonal visits to Disneyland Resort year after year to experience beloved Holiday traditions and festive cheer, from snowfall on Main Street, U.S.A., to glistening décor, Disney-themed treats and merchandise, holiday entertainment and the one-of-a-kind transformations that create “it’s a small world” Holiday and Haunted Mansion Holiday.

Here are some of the holday offerings you’ll find at Disneyland Park: 

Guests entering Disneyland are greeted by a magnificent. 60-foot tall Christmas tree on Main Street, U.S.A., decorated with nearly 1,800 ornaments. The classic tree is an ideal location for holiday photos, to document the magical memory for a lifetime.

Mickey, Minnie, Disney Princesses and Santa celebrate the season in “A Christmas Fantasy” parade, a daily procession with floats, music and marching “tin soldiers.” Guests may wave to Anna, Elsa and Olaf, who bid them a warm winter welcome from their fantastic “Frozen” float.

The holiday magic shines brightly with the glow of the shimmering icicles and twinkling lights on Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle, enchanting guests from day to night.In the evening, the spectacular “Believe … in Holiday Magic” fireworks spectacular and its magical snowfall finale create lasting holiday memories for guests.

Disneyland guests also will want to experience the popular seasonal transformations of these attractions:
“it’s a small world” is transformed each evening into “it’s a small world” Holiday, with 50,000-plus colorful lights, music and video projections. Inside the attraction, holiday magic takes guests around the world and back as dolls and toys representing children enjoy the distinctive holiday traditions of their countries.‘Twas “The Nightmare before Christmas” and all through the Haunted Mansion, Jack Skellington and his friends are causing a collision between Christmas and Halloween to transform the Haunted Mansion into Haunted Mansion Holiday.**Haunted Mansion Holiday is inspired by “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas.”

Here’s what you can find at Disney California Adventure Park: 

The nighttime spectacular “World of Color – Season of Light” wraps guests in the warm glow of holiday magic. Fusing cherished holiday music sung by beloved artists with memorable moments from treasured Disney animated films, this sparkling winter fantasy is magical for all ages. This production of “World of Color” is made extra brilliant with dazzling lights, lasers and high-definition projections.

Disney Festival of Holidays brings the spirit of the season to life through lively entertainment and special traditions. Children will enjoy craft stations and everyone will appreciate the delicious food at Festive Foods Marketplace, featuring a mix of holiday dishes and beverages that bridge many diverse cultures and family traditions.The Three Caballeros host the popular “Disney ¡Viva Navidad! Street Party” celebration, featuring folklórico and samba dancers, live musicians, and Mickey and Minnie in their fiesta best.The holidays are zooming into Cars Land and the residents are racing to celebrate the season. Two attractions rely on holiday magic to transform into Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl and Mater’s Jingle Jamboree. The whimsical “Snowcar” greets guests on the road to Radiator Springs, and each “Cars” character also gets a holiday makeover at their Route 66 address to reflect their personality.Santa Claus is coming to town! Guests will enjoy special holiday-themed activities with Santa and his sleigh full of mischievous elves at Santa’s Holiday Visit at the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail.As guests enter the park and stroll along Buena Vista Street, a dazzling, 50-foot Christmas tree adorns Carthay Circle to help guests get in the holiday spirit. The tree and surrounding buildings are decorated with vintage-style ornaments in keeping with the theme of Buena Vista Street, inspired by Los Angeles as it appeared when Walt Disney arrived in the 1920’s. Pacific Wharf, Hollywood Land and Grizzly Peak will also sparkle with holiday décor throughout the season.Guests will drift into a wintry mood as they encounter the splendid sisters Anna and Elsa inside the Disney Animation building. Guests may also relive the story of the Disney blockbuster film “Frozen” as they immerse themselves in the wondrous magic and music in the spectacular stage musical, “Frozen – Live at the Hyperion.”

Throughout the resort, guests will discover holiday culinary treats and festive fare, along with special merchandise for the merry season.
Also during the holiday season, the Downtown Disney District will be full of festive shopping, dining and entertainment and the Hotels of the Disneyland Resort also join in the yuletide celebration with twinkling lights and ornaments, holiday displays, special entertainment and holiday-inspired eats and treats.

What are YOU most excited for this holiday season? Are you planning a visit to the Disneyland Resort? Share your plans with me in the comments. I’d love to hear all about them!

For more information about the Holidays at Disneyland Resort, please visit HERE.

{Giveaway} Irvine Park Railroad’s 24th Annual Christmas Train

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.

The holiday season is just around the corner and I couldn’t be more excited about it! I feel so lucky to live in Orange County because we are so close to THE BEST Christmas train aound: Irvine Park Railroad’s Christmas Train. For our family, it’s become an annual tradition and it’s the place that we get our keepsake Santa photo each year.

You can come to Irvine Park Railroad’s Christmas train with family and friends and take an enchanting night ride through historic Irvine Regional Park to meet Santa Claus. The train departs to “The North Pole” every 15 minutes from the brightly-lit train station and takes you on a beautiful train ride filled with lights and adventure. At the North Pole, visitors meet Santa may purchase coffee, hot chocolate, freshly-popped popcorn, hot pretzels, and cookies from Santa’s Snack Shop. (A full kitchen menu is available at the train station)Visitors may take their own pictures with Santa or you may purchase a picture taken by Irvine Park Railroad. Each 5” x 7” photo will be presented with an Irvine Park Railroad frame and available for pickup shortly after being taken. After visiting with Santa, hop back aboard the train and enjoy the colorful Christmas lights and decorations, as well as the magical “Tunnel of Lights”, on the ride back to the station. When visiting the Christmas Train, remember to dress warmly, bring a camera, and arrive early to avoid crowds.

In addition to riding the Christmas train, there are many activities for children to enjoy in Santa’s Village located next to the train station. Activities will be open when the Christmas Train runs and include:

  • Story Time with Mrs. Claus
  • Christmas Cookie Decorating
  • Carnival Games
  • Ice Fishing
  • Santa Claus Moon Bounce
  • Craft Corner
  • Blizzard Ball
  • Christmas Coloring Corner
  • Picture Stands

Please note: Some of the activities in Santa’s Village require an activity ticket. Activity tickets are different from Christmas train tickets and may be purchased directly at the box office, regardless of whether Christmas train tickets are sold out or not. 

The Irvine Park Railroad Christmas Train will be open this year beginning Friday, November 29th through Sunday, December 23rd. The cost to ride the Christmas Train is $20.00 per person. Children younger than 24 months ride free. Tickets for the Christmas Train SELL OUT QUICKLY! This year, they’ll go on sale beginning Monday, November 4 at 8:a.m. and WILL SELL OUT! You can purcahse them at http://www.IrvineParkRailroad.com. No Christmas Train tickets may be purchased in person.

The parking for Irvine Regional Park is $3.00 per vehicle on weekdays and $5.00 per vehicle on weekends; parking for the Christmas Train is free after 5:00 PM.

Irvine Park Railroad is located inside of Irvine Regional Park. The address is:

Irvine Park Railroad
1 Irvine Park Road
Orange, CA 92869


As I mentioned above, this year Irvine Park Railroad’s Christmas Train tickets will go on sale Monday, November 4, 2019 at 8 a.m. I’m actually hosting a giveaway for one (1) of my readers to win an amazing prize package, generously given away by Irvine Park Railroad, which includes Christmas Train tickets! The prize package includes:

  • 4 Christmas Train Tickets
  • · 6 Activity Tickets
  • · 1 Wheel Fun Rentals at Irvine Park Bike Rental (excludes the double surrey)

The value of this prize package is $146. Please note: Bloggers are not eligible to win this.

My giveaway ends before the tickets go on sale so why not enter my giveaway and see if you win? If you don’t win, you’ll still have plenty of time to plan for getting online on 11/4/19 at 8 a.m. to grab your tickets! To enter my giveaway, just go to the Rafflecopter below and fill it out. Good luck everyone! Thanks for reading!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Family Friendly Fun at Knott’s Spooky Farm Weekends Starting September 28

I was invited as a guest of Knott’s to spend a day in the park in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own. 

It’s almost that time of year again! Halloween time! I love spending September and October celebrating as much as possible and a visit to Knott’s for Knott’s Spooky Farm is always on our list of must-dos! Have you been before?Knott’s Spooky Farm is annual datytime family-friendly celebration that takes place on Saturday and Sunday days through October 27, as well as Halloween day. This kid-inspired “spooky” celebration offers a a variety of fun activities, throughout the park, geared towards children ages 3-11 and are included in the price of your regular park ticket. (or Season Pass) Children will be able to interact spooky (but very friendly) shopkeepers and ghosts in Ghost Town. Children are welcome to dress up in costumes. Adults are too. (no masks please.)

Here are some of the fun acitivites you’ll find this year at Knott’s Spooky Farm:

Trick or Treating (Ghost Town Main Street & Schoolhouse Road) – Little ghouls can trick-or-treat through Ghost Town to collect sweet Halloween treats. Treat bags containing event maps and other goodies will be distributed to children age 3 to 11 from opening until 4:30pm. There are different trick-or-treat stations, which you can find on the Knott’s Spooky Farm map.

Timber Mountain Log Ride: Halloween Hootenanny – The Timber Mountain Log Ride mystically converts into the Halloween Hootenanny by adding a new family friendly twist to a park favorite. Every year the citizens of the Timber Mountain invite the mysterious creatures that live out in the woods and caverns of the area to join them as they celebrate the season at the Halloween Hootenanny. The ride’s interior will feature new fun surprises as guests venture past the Calico Coffin Creeper band, the town’s green witch and splash down Skull Mountain through a labyrinth of jack-o-lanterns. The seasonal ride will also feature an original song performed by Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies. Open for day and night guests, this is the perfect family experience for all to enjoy this Halloween season.“The Monsters are Coming, Charlie Brown” (Camp Snoopy Theatre) – Camp Snoopy Theater plays host to the “Monsters are Coming” show. The Peanuts Gang will have you singing and dancing right along with them to classic Halloween tunes! Several shows a day are offered.where children are encouraged to participate in the daily “Calling All Monsters” costume contest.A Trip to Camp Spooky (Grand Sierra Railroad) – While you’re visiting Camp Spooky, be sure to take a ride on the Grand Sierra Railroad. This year, special for Knott’s Spooky Farm, guests will find added 2D and 3D Hallowen themed characters and effects as The Grand Sierra Railroad has been transformed into a one-of-a-kind experience that will take riders on an adventure to Camp Spooky, along with the Peanuts Gang.Creepy Critters of Calico (Livery Stable) – This year, Stanley Scarecrow has opened his Livery Stable to guests of all ages to come in and get up close and personal with the Creepy Critters of Calico, if you dare! You’ll find insects and other creepy crawlers, rats, and even a white python! The horses at the stable are also dressed up for the occasion.

Pumpkin Patch (Calico Park) – Over in Calico Patch, you’ll find the Pumpkin Patch. For an additional fee, you can purchase a pumpkin to decorate for your own home, while you enjoy the atmosphere of the season!Spooky Story Time (Bird Cage Theatre) – stop by Bird Cage Theatre for semi-haunted tales told by charismatic storytellers.

(Please note: some activities may be offered at a nominal fee.)

The best way to experience Knott’s Spooky Farm is with a  2020 Knott’s Season Pass! Right now, if you purchase a 2020 pass, you’ll get one free admission in 2019, as well as additional 2019 visits for just $14.99. It’s a great way to enjoy ALL the Seasons of Fun at Knott’s and is offered at a GREAT PRICE! For more information about Knott’s Season Passes and to purchase your own, please visit HERE
What are YOU most excitedf for this Halloween season? Share with me in the comments. For more information about Knott’s Camp Spooky and to purchase your park tickets, please visit their site HERE.

Disneyland Annual Passholders “Bring a Friend” $99 Ticket Offer

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. 

Summer is well underway and as usual, there are a lot of exciting, new things happening at the Disneyland Resort! To make it even better, a very special “Bring a Friend” $99 ticket offer! That’s right, now through August 30, Disneyland Annual Passholders can purchase up to three (3) $99 Park Hopper tickets per day! Also, if a Passholder is blocked out on that day, they, too, may purchase a $99 Park Hopper ticket for entrance that day. This is an amazing deal for a Park Hopper ticket, especially with some of the newest offerings at the Resort right now:

  • Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge – Now open to the public with the Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run attraction open and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance scheduled to open later this year.
  • The “Tale of the Lion King” – an all-new, outdoor live musical production in Disney California Adventure Park
  • The newest attractions to open on the re-imagined Pixar Pier, Jessie’s Critter Carousel and Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind
  • The limited-time return of “Soarin’ Over California
  • And returning for a limited-time encore run is The Main Street Electrical Parade! Beginning August 2!

Disneyland Annual Passholders may purchase $99 “Bring a Friend” tickets at any Disneyland Resort Ticket Booth. Tickets are only valid on the day of purchase. Also, Passholder must accompany guests into the first entry of a theme park that day.

*Passholder must present valid Annual Passport at time of purchase and admission. (Government-issued photo ID may be required.) This offer ends August 30, 2019. Tickets valid for ages 3 and above and may not be sold or transferred for commercial use. Offer may not be combined with other ticket discounts or promotions. Subject to capacity, restrictions and change without notice.

Top 10 Ways to Save Money at the 2019 OC Fair

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. 
The 2019 OC Fair is just around the corner and we can’t wait! Going to the fair is something our family does every summer. This year’s theme celebrates the county’s agricultural roots and invites everyone to enjoy “Acres of Fun”. This year, the OC Fair will be open from July 12-Aug. 11.One of the best parts about the OC Fair is all of the ways fair goers can save money on admission and tickets. There are so many great opportunities to do so and if you plan ahead, you can maximize the savings.Here is a list of 10 tips to save you money at this year’s OC Fair:

  • Tip 1 – Get 30% more carnival tickets if you buy before May 31. Options include a 52-ticket ride pass for $20, a 130-ticket pass for $50 and a 260-ticket pass for $100. Rides require multiple tickets. Buy tickets online at ocfair.com/carnival.
  • Tip 2 – If you plan to come to the OC Fair more than once, you need a Super Pass. For one low price, fair goers can come to all 23 days of the Fair. Through May 31, general admission Super Passes are $35, seniors (60+) and youth (ages 6-12) passes are just $28. OC Fair general admission is $12 Wednesday through Friday and $14 on weekends. Senior and youth admission is $7 every day. Visit ocfair.com/superpass.
  • Tip 3 – Enter competitions and get free admission. If you are a table-setting virtuoso, an extraordinary avocado grower or a top-notch cake baker, this is the way to go. New this year, the OC Fair Exhibitor Renaissance Award will recognize an adult and a youth competitor with multiple skill sets. More information is at ocfair.com/competitions.
  • Tip 4 – Visit other fairs and get into the OC Fair for free. Save your San Diego County Fair, Riverside County Fair, San Bernardino County Fair, or Ventura County Fair ticket stub for one free admission to the OC Fair. Bonus tip: Save your 2019 OC Fair admission ticket for one free admission at the 2020 Riverside County Fair (Feb. 14-23).
  • Tip 5 – Concert and show tickets come with free admission. Shows are selling out, so make sure to get tickets now for Pacific Amphitheatre concerts, The Hangar shows and thrills in the Action Sports Arena. Don’t miss Brandi Carlile, the Queen Nation tribute band or the newest addition to the Action Sports Arena: lawn mower racing. Tickets are on sale now at ocfair.com/entertainment.
  • Tip 6 – OC Fair Express is only $4 round-trip and bus riders get $4 Fair admission. This amazing deal also helps cut traffic and eliminates a parking fee. Catch the OC Fair Express from one of nine OC locations every Saturday and Sunday. More info is at ocfairexpress.com. Bonus tip: Another option on weekends: fairgoers can park for free at Experian and grab a free shuttle to the OC Fair.
  • Tip 7 – Students get carnival rides for reading. The OC Fair Read & Ride gives three free rides to bookworms ages 5-11 who read two books. Forms can be downloaded online and redeemed for ride tickets. More information is at ocfair.com/deals.
  • Tip 8 – Donate items on a We Care Wednesday. Receive free admission on Wednesdays from noon to 3 p.m. by donating school supplies, canned food, children’s books or kids clothing to local nonprofits. Visit ocfair.com/deals for a schedule.
  • Tip 9 – Kids Day is a great deal for families. Kids 12 and younger get in to the OC Fair free each Thursday. It’s also a terrific day to sample those only-at-the-Fair goodies at $3 Taste of the Fair from noon to 4 p.m. each Thursday.
  • Tip 10 – Work at the OC Fair. OC Fair & Event Center is hiring now to fill more than 1,300 seasonal, part-time positions. Not only do employees get free Fair admission, but they can purchase up to 20 tickets for friends and family for just $1 each. You can apply online at ocfair.com/jobs.

I hope these tips are helpful for you. If you’re a planner like me, then these are definitely going to come in handy as you plan for the summer!

Graphic is property of OC Fair and used with permission. 

Kaleidoscope Hosts a Summer Full of Fun with Free Kaleido Kids Events, Carnival to Benefit Make-A-Wish® Orange County and the Inland Empire

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. 
Local youngsters can enjoy a variety of free activities and entertainment at Kaleidoscope this summer, when the center’s annual Kaleido Kids Summer Events return on Tuesday, June 18. Held in Kaleidoscope’s event space inside Union Market Mission Viejo, the fun events are every Tuesday from 11:30am – 12:30pm, June 18 through July 23.

The summer events will culminate with the annual Kaleido Kids Carnival on Tuesday, July 30 from 11am to 2:30pm. Tickets are $10 per person, with all games and activities included, and all proceeds benefitting Make-A-Wish® Orange County and the Inland Empire. The Carnival has raised nearly $56,000 for the non-profit over the last seven years.The Kaleido Kids events are 11:30am – 12:30pm with the following schedule:

  • June 18: Toy Story, including a meet and greet, sing along and photos with costumed characters, themed crafts, and refreshments.
  • June 25: Unicorn Painting Party, where kids can paint a picture of a unicorn with special instructions by a local artist, take photos with a magical unicorn, and enjoy music and snacks.
  • July 2: Cooking with Kids, where youngsters will follow simple instructions to create then enjoy a kid-friendly healthy snack and dessert. Kids will receive paper chef hats and instructions to take home to recreate the treats.
  • July 9: Percussion Play Along, where kids will enjoy an interactive musical experience, playing along to African and international rhythms using over 20 exotic djembe drums and percussion instruments, with a themed costumed character and snacks.
  • July 16: Lego Playtime, where their imagination can soar by building with a variety of Lego blocks, along with enjoying music and snacks.
  • July 23: Hula Hoop Dance Party, with an expert leading the kids in Hula Hoop tricks, dancing along to music, and enjoying kid-friendly snacks.

On Tuesday, July 30, the Kaleido Kids Carnival will include games, activities, balloon art, face painting, costumed characters, photo opportunities, a DJ, and refreshments. Admission is $10 per person and benefits Make-A-Wish. Tickets must be purchased in advance through http://www.Kaleidokidscarnival.eventbrite.com.Guests who bring a new backpack or new toy (no guns please) to donate to Make-A-Wish will receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win one Kaleidoscope family gift basket.

Also on Tuesdays, restaurants inside Union Market Mission Viejo at Kaleidoscope host Kids Eat Free, with a child receiving a free beverage or kids meal with the purchase of a regular (adult) beverage or entrée. Scent Avenue inside Union Market Mission Viejo also offers 20% off on Tuesdays.

Adding to the summer fun is the Edwards Kaleidoscope Stadium 10 Summer Movie Express at 10am on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from June 18 to August 14, when popular family movies rated G or PG are shown for only $1 admission per person.

For more information on the Kaleido Kids events or Carnival, please call 949.542.4407 or visit http://www.gokaleidoscope.com. Kaleidoscope is located at 27741 Crown Valley Parkway, just off the 5 Fwy., in Mission Viejo.