Orange County Memorial Day Events
ORANGE COUNTY MEMORIAL DAY EVENTS
We have compiled a list of Orange County Memorial Day Events that will honor those who gave their lives for us, so that we may remain “The Land of the Free.” We have also added some fun, family events to help launch the beginning of Summer.
We tried to include every city in Orange County but came up short on a couple. If you know of an event we haven’t included, please let us know and we’ll add it.
We at My Local OC bow our heads in reverence and thankfulness to the brave men and women who died in the line of duty. And while we know this is a fun time for the entire family and friends, why not take a moment to lift up a thought or say a prayer of thanksgiving? And take another moment to teach the kids why we celebrate this day. Have a fun and safe Memorial Day Weekend.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF MEMORIAL DAY
Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the people who died while serving in the U.S. military. Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971.
By the late 1860s, 5-years before the Civil War ended, Americans in various towns and cities began holding springtime tributes to the countless fallen soldiers of the Civil War. They decorated their graves with flowers and recited prayers.
Some records show that one of the earliest Memorial Day commemorations was organized by a group of formerly enslaved people in Charleston, South Carolina less than a month after the Confederacy surrendered in 1865.
Nevertheless, in 1966 the federal government declared Waterloo, New York, the official birthplace of Memorial Day. Waterloo was chosen because it hosted an annual, community-wide event, during which businesses closed and residents decorated the graves of soldiers with flowers and flags.
On the first Decoration Day, General James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery, and 5,000 participants decorated the graves of the 20,000 Civil War soldiers buried there.
Many Northern states held similar commemorative events and reprised the tradition in subsequent years; by 1890 each one had made Decoration Day an official state holiday. Southern states, on the other hand, continued to honor the dead on separate days until after World War I.
For decades, Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30, the date General Logan selected for the first Decoration Day. But in 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day weekend for federal employees. The change went into effect in 1971. The same law also declared Memorial Day a federal holiday.
In the spring of 1915, shortly after losing a friend in Ypres, a Canadian doctor, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae wrote his now-famous poem “In Flanders Fields.” His poem inspired the use of the poppy as a symbol of Remembrance.
WHERE IS FLANDERS FIELD?
Flanders Field American Cemetery & Memorial is one of eight overseas World War I cemeteries designed and administered by the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC), a federal agency created in 1923. Flanders Field, located in Waregem, West Flanders, Belgium, is the only ABMC World War I cemetery in Belgium.
“In Flanders Fields”
A Poem By: Colonel John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
And so, in remembrance, we are posting our list of Orange County Memorial Day Events. We hope you are able to find one near you, and maybe even wear a poppy as a sign of respect.
ORANGE COUNTY MEMORIAL DAY EVENTS
***At the time of this posting, locations, dates, and times are accurate. Please check before attending.
Anaheim Heat OC: Music All Night May 28, 9:00 p.m. Garden Walk, 400 Disney Way Suite 214 – Website
Capistrano Beach Memorial Day Ceremony May 29, 10:00 a.m. Pines Park 34941 Camino Capistrano Website
Costa Mesa Yachty by Nature Memorial Day Party May 29, 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. The Country Club, 330 E 17th St Website
Fountain Valley Memorial Day & Flag Raising Ceremony May 29, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Veterans Park 17635 Los Alamos St. Website
Fullerton Memorial Day — Sunny Hills PTSA May 29, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunny Hills High School 1801 Lancer Way Website
Garden Grove The Strawberry Festival May 26 – 29 (See website for hours.) The Village Green Between Euclid & Main Website
Huntington Beach SOUND BURNED 2023 Memorial Day ‘Summer Sizzle’ Beach Party May 29, 11 a.m. Huntington Beach House, 21601 E Pacific Coast Hwy Website
Irvine Memorial Day Ceremony May 29, 10 a.m. Colonel Bill Barber Marine Corps Memorial Park 4 Civic Center Website
La Habra Memorial Day Craft Fair May 28, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Children’s Museum @ La Habra 301 S. Euclid St. Website
La Palma Memorial Day Ceremony May 30, 9 a.m. (Closed to traffic @ 8:45 a.m.) La Palma Civic Ctr. 7822 Walker St. Website
Laguna Beach Memorial Day Concert May 30 10:4 a.m. to 2 p.m. Main Beach Broadway and PCH Website
Laguna Hills Memorial Day Run & Festivities May 30, 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Laguna Hills Mall 24155 Laguna Hills Mall Website
Laguna Hills Memorial Day Ceremony May 27, 9:00-10:00 a.m. New Vista School 23092 Mill Creek Dr. Website
Laguna Niguel Memorial Day Ceremony May 30, 12:00-1:00 p.m. Sea Country Community & Senior Center 24602 Aliso Creek Rd. Website
Lake Forest Memorial Day Program May 30 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. El Toro Memorial Park 25751 Trabuco Rd. Website
Mission Viejo Memorial Day Ceremony May 30, 8:30 a.m. Kershaw Gardens 200 Civic Center Dr. Website
Mission Viejo Memorial Day Art Camp May 30, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Shops @ Mission Viejo 555 Shops @ Mission Viejo Website
Mission Viejo Memorial Day Scrambler May 30, 9 a.m. Saddleback Lanes 25402 Marguerite Pkwy. Website
Newport Beach Wine Festival May 27-29 Balboa Bay Resort 1221 West Coast Hwy Website
Newport Beach Field of Honor May 20-30 – Memorial Day Ceremony May 30 Castaways Park 700 Dover Dr. Website
Rancho Santa Margarita Memorial Day Polo Tournament May 29, 12 p.m. Orange County Polo Club 27271 Silverado Canyon Rd. Website
San Clemente War Time Radio Review May 30, 8:45 p.m. – Tickets necessary Park Semper Fi1 06 N. Alameda Lane Website
San Juan Capistrano Field of Honor May 24-30 9 a.m to 5 p.m. Memorial Day:10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Misison San Juan Capistrano
26801 Ortega Hwy. Website
Santa Ana Memorial Day Service May 30, 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Fairhaven Park 1702 Fairhaven Website
Tustin Memorial Day Ceremony May 9:00 a.m. Veterans Monument @ Veterans Sports Park 1645 Valencia Ave. Website
Tustin Memorial Day Pickleball Tournament May 28-30 Pickleball Courts School Lane & Service Road Website
Westminster Memorial Day Service May 30, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Westminster Memorial Park & Mortuary 14801 Beach Blvd. Website
Yorba Linda Concert May 30, 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Nixon Library 18001 Yorba Linda Blvd. Website
Penned by: Patricia A. Braun
Research Assistant: Amy Siemienczuk
Publisher: My Local OC
Please note: We try very hard to ensure our information is correct, but we highly suggest you check first before
attending to make sure events are still scheduled.
We are not responsible for errors and/or omissions.