Old Towne Orange

The Orange Plaza Historic District is a step back in time depicting a Main Street USA scene, with its turn-of-the-century architecture, old-fashioned town square ambiance, inviting antique shops and leisurely pace. The not-to-miss place here is the classic 100-year-old Watson Drug & Soda Fountain.

Ideally located in the heart of Orange County and just ten minutes from the Anaheim Resort District, Old Towne Orange conjures up the feeling of Main Street, USA with its memorabilia and specialty shops, collectible boutiques and art galleries.

This quaint destination is especially well known as an antique collector's dream, with more than 60 antique dealers all within walking distance.

The eclectic cuisine in Old Towne Orange ranges from new and trendy gastropubs to authentic Cuban dining. But any visit to downtown would not be complete without stopping into the locally famous Watson's Soda Fountain and Lunch.

Established in 1899, Watsons serves up delicious all-American fare. You can sidle up to the soda fountain for a malt, float or banana split or a enjoy hamburger while listening to '50s jukebox jams.

After walking the roundabout, you may want to relax and enjoy the sunshine and warm breezes at the central plaza with its large fountain, benches and tall cypress trees. The surrounding historic Victorian neighborhoods encompass one square mile, offering an idyllic walk about town.

A few blocks north along Glassell Street and find yourself at Chapman University, whose campus greens are dotted with busts of important contributors to arts and culture, a section of the Berlin Wall, Global Citizens Plaza, and modern art pieces.

Come summertime, pack your picnic baskets and enjoy fantastic free entertainment for all ages at Hart Park (about one mile south of the Plaza.)

On Labor Day you can dance the Chicken Dance or practice your Rumba at the Orange International Street Fair, an annual three-day event featuring food, drinks, and music from over ten countries.

And Christmas time finds the Plaza ablaze with lights for the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony.

No matter what time a year you may visit Orange, you can find the old with the new, international and the domestic mixing it together in grand style.

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E.g., 09/22/2014
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