OC Fair & Event Center wins 19 industry awards

The Russell Bros. Circus on Day 3 of the Orange County Fair, July 16, 2017.

COSTA MESA (Jan. 10, 2018) – OC Fair & Event Center was honored with 19 awards, including five first-place accolades for innovation and excellence, by the Western Fairs Association.

OCFEC received first-place honors in photography, technology innovation, volunteer programs, working with nonprofit organizations and producing an event within an event. Many prize categories were specific to the 2017 OC Fair and others were related to year-round events and programs.

The photo of a transfixed audience at an OC Fair circus show won first place as did the Heroes Hall Veterans Story Booth, a permanent installation that archives videos of veterans telling of their military experiences. Other top awards went to the Friends of the Fair program that allows special needs guests to have a private, easy-access Fair experience, and to the OCFEC employee entry in the Damsels of Destruction demolition derby that benefited the Susan G. Komen Orange County. The other top award recognized the birthday party at Centennial Farm during which Fair guests were invited to a celebration to welcome a new litter of piglets.

“It is very special to be honored by our peers in the fair industry. We are proud of the work we do and these awards highlight our commitment to the community,” said Kathy Kramer, OC Fair & Event Center CEO. “The fact that our give-back programs continue to receive recognition means a lot to us and inspires the staff to continue to find more ways to connect with the community.”

OCFEC received second-place awards for the new OC Fair Kids Club program that provides a free Fair experience for children from underserved areas. Heroes Hall, which opened last February, won second place in the new community outreach program category, and the management of the large-animal evacuation at the fairgrounds during recent Orange County fires received second-place recognition. The Farm Fresh Fun fair theme, artist Kiel Johnson’s collaborative paper garden, The Red Barn dinner series and collaboration with OCTA on the OC Fair Express bus system also received second-place honors.

Third-place awards went to the OC Fair’s new California olive oil competition, Centennial Farm’s new wellness program, agricultural programming, the Fair’s souvenir program, new sponsorships and sponsorship innovations. A photograph of the Ferris wheel at sunset also won a third-place award.

The Western Fairs Association presented the awards for 2017 achievements at its annual conference last week in Anaheim.

OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa is home to the annual OC Fair. Year-round attractions include Centennial Farm, Table of Dignity, Heroes Hall and Pacific Amphitheatre. Imaginology, a free three-day family event focusing on S.T.E.A.M.-related activities, will take place April 13-15, 2018. Throughout the year events ranging from recreation shows to cultural festivals are held at the fairgrounds.

Support of OC Fair & Event Center provides year-round educational

opportunities and helps fund community give-back programs.

OC Fair photos and video are available for media use at flickr.com/photos/ocfaircm/albums.