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Sep 4, 2009 10:17 AM

Orange International Street Fair

is this weekend (Fri, Sat & Sun) in the city of Orange. If you can tolerate huge crowds, like food from street vendors, like to laugh at middle aged drunks, enjoy music and don't mind difficult parking this might be for you. I haven't been in years (I hate crowds), but having various international foods within steps of each other makes it chowishly interesting.

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  1. Is this in Old Town Orange near the roundabout?

    1 Reply
    1. It drives me absolutely insane, because it's just impossible to get anywhere near it. But we did make it there last year. The food is mostly forgettable, though a massive shoutout for the galaktoboureko from the Greek church ladies' society south of the circle.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Went for the first time last year. Parking is quite difficult, found a church nearby charging for parking -$2-$4. It's horridly crowded and hot (especially this weekend) and all the fun stops at 9 due to city ordinance or something. Food was just ok, pricey like the fair. Did enjoy the fish and chips, but not worth it at all for me to go again.

      2. The Street Fair is a big drag. The food isn't so hot and it tends to attract a bunch of drunken louts. When I was a kid it was fun, but I could also ride my bike there. Over the years it really went downhill. It would be nice if there was a real "international" fair since OC now has great ethnic food.

        1. We used to go every year too but now haven't been in several years. Its just too hot and crowded and the same thing every year. Most of the food is just okay although we always really liked the gyros at the Greek booth and the bratwurst from the Swiss section (better we thought than the ones you got from the German area... they were always a little overcooked and dried out but that may have changed). For the past few years, without fail, Labor Day weekend has been SCORCHING hot! We just can't seem to get ourselves out there to walk around in the hot sun... too bad, because it really is a nice way to spend a couple of hours.

          4 Replies
          1. re: schmoopy

            1. Go to the Phoenix Club first near Arrowhead Pond they are always open to the public during the street fair. Get some brats- kraut and just enough beer to safely get over to Orange- or get a designated driver. You can eat in the shade and it's not crowded.

            2. Then buy a plastic Viking hat at the street fair. Eat a bunch of food and top it off with some Loukamedes those round donut things with honey on them at the Greek location west of the circle. There is so much honey involved that the place is swarming with bees.

            3. Sleep off your stoopor somewhere shady on the Chapman campus and then head home.


            It's not that great, but you have to go at least twice in your life.

            1. re: meltedcheese

              "It's not that great, but you have to go at least twice in your life." I love that... you speak the truth meltedcheese!

              1. re: schmoopy

                Yea, wall to wall arm pits on a hot, humid afternoon!

                1. re: subal

                  It used to be fun to go years ago , the crowds were smaller, food was better, parking was available. All of that has changed for the worse to the point that we don't even think about it any more. All the weekend drunks bumping around into everyone ...blech.

          2. went and thought it was pretty disgusting. The only highlight was the great music on the Mexican street of the fair.

            2 Replies
            1. re: 212

              I'm back with a report... we did end up going for a little while on Sunday right after church so at least the crowd wasn't that bad yet. We found parking fairly close and then started our rounds... had a beer and then stopped at the Swiss booth for one of their bratwurst which was delicious as always. We tried a couple of other things here and there (teriyaki on a stick, corn on the cob) but I was really saving myself for the gyro. I'm so sad to report that it was terrible! I remember them as being so delicious - bursting with meat, onions, lots of tzatziki sauce, tomatoes, all wrapped in warm soft pita bread. This one was such a sorry excuse for a gyro... three thin slices of meat, a teaspoon or so of sauce, a couple of sad tomato slices, and a few slivers of onions. It was just wrong! In their defense, I wonder if over the years they've found that they just have to "dumb them down" a bit. The four or five people ahead of me (the ones whose orders I could hear) all asked for different variations of "no onions', "no tomatoes", "no sauce", etc. Oh well! There are lots of places to get a good gyro, I'm just sad that the one that has always reigned supreme in my memory no longer exists!

              1. re: schmoopy

                As John Lennon one said, "The dream is over".

                The street fair hasn't been good for years. It's also a magnet for drunken louts.