OC Fair & Event Center is a community asset all year long
OC Fair & Event Center provides engaging year-round educational opportunities and serves the community through give-back programs and free events.
Imaginology: Each April, OC Fair & Event Center transforms into Imaginology, a free three-day S.T.E.A.M. education extravaganza focusing on hands-on learning and fun. Children, teens, families and school groups dig into science, technology, engineering, art and math. Imaginology provides unique experiences for attendees to build, create, play, observe and interact through activities that help them see the possibilities of a future in S.T.E.A.M. fields. Youth competitions give students the chance to be recognized for their unique talent and accomplishments. This free event is presented by OC Fair & Event Center and supported by community partners.
Heroes Hall: Open year-round, Heroes Hall veterans museum and education center is dedicated to telling the stories of the men and women who have served in the U.S. military. Free exhibitions feature diverse points of view and help fulfill the requirements of high school history curriculum. School trips and community groups are welcome and can be scheduled by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Docent-led tours offer additional insights and depth to the rotating exhibitions. The Heroes Hall Virtual Museum provides the opportunity for veterans and their families to record and preserve on video accounts of service and valor along with written accounts, photographs and other memorabilia. Throughout the year, free special events are featured at Heroes Hall.
Centennial Farm: Our three-acre working farm offers unique opportunities for families, classes, groups and individuals to learn about agriculture first-hand. Who would have guessed that there is a real farm in the middle of Costa Mesa? Crops are cultivated year-round and farm animals provide a living classroom – they are our animal educators and might become some of your favorite teachers. Free Jr. Farmer Tours, Discovery Days, Kids Days and The Ranch after-school program teach children where their food comes from. Kids and adults take Centennial Farm gardening classes to learn everything from how to grow tomatoes to how to create a terrarium. Visitors can enjoy the farm all year long free of charge. Centennial Farm is also available for educational group meetings and events.
Table of Dignity: The agricultural workers memorial, Table of Dignity, is dedicated to the legacy of the thousands of agriculture workers who helped to build Orange County. This public art installation pays tribute to those who labored to provide sustenance and economic growth to the area. The memorial is located near Centennial Farm and is open year-round, providing a peaceful place for visitors to pause and reflect.
Emergency response and large animal evacuation site: OC Fair & Event Center does its part to serve the community during times of crisis. During the COVID pandemic, the fairgrounds was a testing super site run by the County of Orange and its partnership with 360 Clinic. Emergency food distribution through the Power of One Foundation fed thousands who drove through the fairgrounds parking lot to collect donated boxes of fresh food. OCFEC also housed trailers that were to be used to help vulnerable people through the City of Costa Mesa, if needed. The fairgrounds is also designated as an evacuation center to house and care for horses and livestock that need to be removed from a disaster area.
Jr. Livestock Auction: Each year thousands of dollars are awarded to local 4H and FFA members who raise animals for the auction. Their work to feed, care for and train the animals to be shown is an educational experience that offers real-world lessons in agriculture. The community offers tremendous support as is shown by the dozens who attend the auction to purchase the animals.
Read and Ride: Children ages 5 to 11 receive three free carnival rides if they read two books and fill out the online form. In partnership with Ray Cammack Shows, Read and Ride supplies a fun incentive to get kids to explore the magic of books – even during the summer.
Volunteer opportunities: OC Fair & Event Center invites the community to get involved in giving back and we offer volunteer programs at Centennial Farm, Heroes Hall and Imaginology. Volunteers help us educate and serve and we are thankful that they lend their time and expertise, allowing us to further our mission.