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Historical Sites

American Legion Hall, Post 132
143 S. Lemon
Orange, CA 92866

Post 132 organized in 1919, but met for almost a decade in Orange City Hall’s basement. The Legion Hall was dedicated June 3, 1928, and looked much the same as it does today (except for the white paint that now covers the original tan stucco).

The Exchange Fine Arts Gallery
195 S. Glassell Street
Orange, CA

Formerly the Sunkist Orange County Fruit Exchange Building, the structure was constructed in 1922 at a cost of $20,000; the exchange itself, however, had incorporated considerably earlier, on November 13, 1893. A few years after the Exchange closed its doors in 1994, colleagues Tom Porter and Lydia Passannante renovated and restored the structure, creating a fine art gallery with an Italian Renaissance-themed interior. In its new incarnation, the gallery re-opened on October 4, 1997.

Grijalva Adobe Site
Rancho Santiago and Hewes

Original site of Juan Pablo Grijalva’s – the first ranchero, builder, and colonizer of Orange – Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana adobe home. The home has been destroyed, but a plaque marks the site of this California pioneer’s homestead.

The Plaza and Old Towne Orange Historic District
Residents and visitors have repeatedly voted historic Old Towne Orange the County's favorite downtown. The Plaza conjures up images of Main Street, USA complete with outdoor dining, specialty shops, and the central Plaza Park. More than 60 antique dealers line the downtown streets, making Orange the antique capital of Southern California.

The Plaza is located at the heart of the Old Towne Orange Historic District. The Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997, and is the largest National Register District in California. The Plaza commercial district and the surrounding historic neighborhoods encompass one square mile and approximately 1,300 buildings representing a diverse array of early California commercial and residential architectural styles.

Plaza Park is located at the intersection of Glassell and Chapman. According to State Historic Resource Surveys, Orange is unique among the region and the state in that it has the second largest concentration of historic buildings.

Pitcher Park
204 S. Cambridge
Orange, CA
Daily 9 am until sunset
(714) 744-7274

Pitcher Park was formerly the home of Henry and Grace Pitcher beginning in 1912, and the property was gifted to the City of Orange in 1988. The park features stone pathways through the property which lead you around clumps of trees, a lively flower garden, and vegetable plots, and stone tables – some of which have inlaid checker/chess boards. Pitcher Park is also home to the Honey House and Orange Fire Museum. Unlike your typical park, bike riding, skateboards, roller-blading, and picking fruit are prohibited at Pitcher Park.

Villa Park Orchards Association
190 N. Cypress
Orange, CA

Though it bears the name of a neighboring city, the Villa Park Orchards Association packinghouse has been located in Orange for more than 30 years. The association was established in Villa Park in 1912, when 48 local fruit growers organized to harvest, pack, and market their fruit; the organization incorporated in 1913. A second packing house, located at the former Santiago Orange Growers Association packinghouse in Orange, was required to handle the overflow of fruit from the Villa Park-based packinghouse. By 1981, though, the Villa Park plant had been vacated and sold. Now Orange’s VPOA is one of only two operating packinghouses located in Orange County, and walk-in customers can still buy fresh fruit there.

Watson Drugs & Soda Fountain
116 E. Chapman Avenue
Orange, CA 92866
(714) 532-6315
Monday – Saturday 6:30 am – 9 pm, Sunday 8 am – 6 pm

Established in 1899, Watson is the oldest drugstore in Orange County and the oldest on-going business in the City of Orange. The interior and exterior has been used to film many movies and commercials, including Tom Hank’s film, “That Thing You Do,” Barbara Eden’s film, “The Stepford Children,” and Burt Reynolds’ film, “Cannonball Run.” Town officials and newcomers alike receive a friendly greeting as they stop in for a hamburger and shake.

Woman’s Club House
121 S. Center Street
Orange, CA 92866

The Orange Woman’s Club got its start in 1915 at a gathering of ten local women. Ground was broken for the clubhouse in 1923, and the building was completed within 120 days at a cost of $13,488.

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