Orange County, California facts for kids

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Orange County, California
County
County of Orange
The City of Newport Beach July 2014 photo D Ramey Logan.jpg
DisneylandCastle.JPG Huntington Pier Terminus.jpg
San Clemente CA Photo D Ramey Logan.jpg Laguna Beach Bucht.JPG
Images, from top down, left to right: Aerial view of the coast of Newport Beach, Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland, Huntington Beach Pier, San Clemente Pier, Laguna Beach
Flag of Orange County, California
Flag
Official seal of Orange County, California
Seal
Location in the state of California
Location in the state of California
Cities in Orange County
Cities in Orange County
Country  United States
State  California
Region Greater Los Angeles Area
Incorporated March 11, 1889
Named for The orange
Area
 • Total 948 sq mi (2,460 km2)
 • Land 799 sq mi (2,070 km2)
 • Water 157 sq mi (410 km2)
Highest elevation 5,690 ft (1,730 m)
Population (April 1, 2010)
 • Total 3,010,232
 • Estimate (2015) 3,169,776
 • Density 3,175.4/sq mi (1,226.0/km2)
Demonym(s) Orange Countian
Time zone Pacific Time Zone (UTC−8)
 • Summer (DST) Pacific Daylight Time (UTC−7)
Area codes 562, 657/714, 949
FIPS code 06-059
GNIS feature ID 277294
Website www.ocgov.com

Orange County is a county in the U.S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 3,010,232 making it the third-most populous county in California, the sixth-most populous in the United States, and more populous than twenty-one U.S. states. Its county seat is Santa Ana. It is the second most densely populated county in the state, second only to San Francisco County. The county's four largest cities, Anaheim, Santa Ana, Irvine, and Huntington Beach each have populations exceeding 200,000. Several of Orange County's cities are on the Pacific coast, including Huntington Beach, Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, and San Clemente.

Orange County is included in the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area. Thirty-four incorporated cities are located in the county; the newest is Aliso Viejo, which was incorporated in 2001. Anaheim was the first city, incorporated in 1870, when the region was still part of neighboring Los Angeles County. Whereas most population centers in the United States tend to be identified by a major city, there is no defined urban center in Orange County. It is mostly suburban except for some traditionally urban areas at the centers of the older cities of Anaheim, Fullerton, Huntington Beach, Orange, and Santa Ana. There are several edge city-style developments such as Irvine Business Center, Newport Center, and South Coast Metro.

The county is famous for its tourism as the home of attractions like Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm, and several beaches along its more than 40 miles (64 km) of coastline. It is also known for its political conservatism—a 2005 academic study listed three Orange County cities as among America's 25 most conservative, making it one of two counties in the nation containing more than one such city. (Maricopa County, Arizona also has three cities on the list.) It is part of the Tech Coast.

History

Orange County map 1921
Orange County map, 1921

Members of the Tongva, Juaneño, and Luiseño Native American groups long inhabited the area. After the 1769 expedition of Gaspar de Portolà, a Spanish expedition led by Junipero Serra named the area Valle de Santa Ana (Valley of Saint Anne). On November 1, 1776, Mission San Juan Capistrano became the area's first permanent European settlement. Among those who came with Portolá were José Manuel Nieto and José Antonio Yorba. Both these men were given land grants—Rancho Los Nietos and Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana, respectively. The Nieto heirs were granted land in 1834. The Nieto ranches were known as Rancho Los Alamitos, Rancho Las Bolsas, and Rancho Los Coyotes. Yorba heirs Bernardo Yorba and Teodosio Yorba were also granted Rancho Cañón de Santa Ana (Santa Ana Canyon Ranch) and Rancho Lomas de Santiago, respectively. Other ranchos in Orange County were granted by the Mexican government during the Mexican period in Alta California.

A severe drought in the 1860s devastated the prevailing industry, cattle ranching, and much land came into the possession of Richard O'Neill, Sr., James Irvine and other land barons. In 1887, silver was discovered in the Santa Ana Mountains, attracting settlers via the Santa Fe and Southern Pacific Railroads.

This growth led the California legislature to divide Los Angeles County and create Orange County as a separate political entity on March 11, 1889. The county is said to have been named for the citrus fruit in an attempt to promote immigration by suggesting a semi-tropical paradise–a place where anything could grow.

ONE OF A FEW REMAINING FARM FIELDS NEAR THE OCEAN IN FAST GROWING ORANGE COUNTY. SOME 4 PERCENT OF THE STATE... - NARA - 557476
One of the few remaining farms near the ocean, 1975. Photo by Charles O'Rear.

Other citrus crops, avocados, and oil extraction were also important to the early economy. Orange County benefited from the July 4, 1904 completion of the Pacific Electric Railway, a trolley connecting Los Angeles with Santa Ana and Newport Beach. The link made Orange County an accessible weekend retreat for celebrities of early Hollywood. It was deemed so significant that Pacific City changed its name to Huntington Beach in honor of Henry E. Huntington, president of the Pacific Electric and nephew of Collis Huntington. Transportation further improved with the completion of the State Route and U.S. Route 101 (now mostly Interstate 5) in the 1920s.

Aerial view of central Orange County overlooking South Coast Metro, John Wayne Airport, and the Irvine business district
South Coast Metro area in central Orange County

Agriculture, such as that involving the boysenberries made famous by Buena Park native Walter Knott, began to decline after World War II. However, the county's prosperity soared during this time. The completion of Interstate 5 in 1954 helped make Orange County a bedroom community for many who moved to Southern California to work in aerospace and manufacturing. Orange County received a further boost in 1955 with the opening of Disneyland.

In 1969, Yorba Linda-born Orange County native Richard Nixon became the 37th President of the United States.

In the 1980s, Orange County had become the second most populous county in California as the population topped two million for the first time.

In 1994, an investment fund meltdown led to the criminal prosecution of treasurer Robert Citron. The county lost at least $1.5 billion through high-risk investments in bonds. The loss was blamed on derivatives by some media reports. On December 6, 1994, the County of Orange declared Chapter 9 bankruptcy, from which it emerged on June 12, 1996. The Orange County bankruptcy was at the time the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

In recent years, land use conflicts have arisen between established areas in the north and less developed areas in the south. These conflicts have regarded issues such as construction of new toll roads and the repurposing of a decommissioned air base. El Toro Marine Corps Air Station was designated by a voter measure in 1994 to be developed into an international airport to complement the existing John Wayne Airport. But subsequent voter initiatives and court actions have caused the airport plan to be permanently shelved. Instead, it will become the Orange County Great Park.

Geography

See also: List of rivers of Orange County, California

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 948 square miles (2,460 km2), of which 791 square miles (2,050 km2) is land and 157 square miles (410 km2) (16.6%) is water. It is the smallest county in Southern California. The average annual temperature is about 68 °F (20 °C).

Orange County is bordered on the southwest by the Pacific Ocean, on the north by Los Angeles County, on the northeast by San Bernardino County and Riverside County, and on the southeast by San Diego County.

Newport Center Skyline and Santa Ana Mountains
View of Newport Center and the Santa Ana Mountains from Newport Harbor

The northwestern part of the county lies on the coastal plain of the Los Angeles Basin, while the southeastern end rises into the foothills of the Santa Ana Mountains. Most of Orange County's population reside in one of two shallow coastal valleys that lie in the basin, the Santa Ana Valley and the Saddleback Valley. The Santa Ana Mountains lie within the eastern boundaries of the county and of the Cleveland National Forest. The high point is Santiago Peak (5,689 feet (1,734 m)), about 20 mi (32 km) east of Santa Ana. Santiago Peak and nearby Modjeska Peak, just 200 feet (60 m) shorter, form a ridge known as Saddleback, visible from almost everywhere in the county. The Peralta Hills extend westward from the Santa Ana Mountains through the communities of Anaheim Hills, Orange, and ending in Olive. The Loma Ridge is another prominent feature, running parallel to the Santa Ana Mountains through the central part of the county, separated from the taller mountains to the east by Santiago Canyon.

The Santa Ana River is the county's principal watercourse, flowing through the middle of the county from northeast to southwest. Its major tributary to the south and east is Santiago Creek. Other watercourses within the county include Aliso Creek, San Juan Creek, and Horsethief Creek. In the North, the San Gabriel River also briefly crosses into Orange County and exits into the Pacific on the Los Angeles-Orange County line between the cities of Long Beach and Seal Beach. Laguna Beach is home to the county's only natural lakes, Laguna Lakes, which are formed by water rising up against an underground fault.

Three Arch Bay Photo Taken by pilot D Ramey Logan
Three Arch Bay Laguna Beach is considered Southern Orange County

Residents sometimes divide the county into north Orange County and south Orange County. In effect, this is a division of the county into northwestern and southeastern halves following the county's natural diagonal orientation along the coast. This is more of a cultural and demographic distinction perpetuated by the popular television shows The OC, The Real Housewives of Orange County and Laguna Beach. The distinction exists between the older areas closer to Los Angeles and the more affluent and recently developed areas to the south. A transition between older and newer development may be considered to exist roughly parallel to State Route 55, also known as the Costa Mesa Freeway. This transition is accentuated by large flanking tracts of sparsely developed area occupied until recent years by agriculture and military airfields.

While there is a northeast to southwest topographic transition from elevated areas inland to the lower coastal band, there is no formal geographic division between North and South County. Perpendicular to that gradient, the Santa Ana River roughly divides the county into northwestern and southeastern sectors. Each sector comprises 40 to 60 percent of the county respectively by area. There are significant political, demographic, economic, and cultural distinctions between North and South Orange County, with North Orange County having greater populations of people of color, younger populations, greater percentages of renters, lower median incomes, higher rates of unemployment, and greater proportions of voters registered as Democrats versus as Republicans. However, certain areas in both North and South Orange County vary from these general trends.

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

  • Cleveland National Forest (part)
  • Seal Beach National Wildlife Refuge

Demographics

2011

Places by population, race, and income

2010

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 13,589
1900 19,696 44.9%
1910 34,436 74.8%
1920 61,375 78.2%
1930 118,674 93.4%
1940 130,760 10.2%
1950 216,224 65.4%
1960 703,925 225.6%
1970 1,420,386 101.8%
1980 1,932,709 36.1%
1990 2,410,556 24.7%
2000 2,846,289 18.1%
2010 3,010,232 5.8%
Est. 2015 3,169,776 5.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790–1960 1900–1990
1990–2000 2010–2015
Density OC3
Orange County Density Map. Darker shades indicate more densely populated areas.

The 2010 United States Census reported that Orange County had a population of 3,010,232. The racial makeup of Orange County was 1,830,758 (60.8%) White (44.0% non-Hispanic white), 50,744 (1.7%) African American, 18,132 (0.6%) Native American, 537,804 (17.9%) Asian, 9,354 (0.3%) Pacific Islander, 435,641 (14.5%) from other races, and 127,799 (4.2%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1,012,973 persons (33.7%).

The Hispanic and Latino population is predominantly of Mexican origin; this group accounts for 28.5% of the county's population, followed by Salvadorans (0.8%), Guatemalans (0.5%), Puerto Ricans (0.4%), Cubans (0.3%), Colombians (0.3%), and Peruvians (0.3%). Santa Ana with its population reportedly 75 percent Hispanic/Latino, is among the most Hispanic/Latino percentage cities in both California and the U.S., esp. of Mexican-American descent. See also Logan Park (Santa Ana), the city's largest and oldest barrio.

Among the Asian population, 6.1% are Vietnamese, followed by Koreans (2.9%), Chinese (2.7%), Filipinos (2.4%), Indians (1.4%), Japanese (1.1%), Cambodians (0.2%) Pakistanis (0.2%), Thais (0.1%), Indonesians (0.1%), and Laotians (0.1%). According to KPCC in 2014, Orange County has the largest proportion of Asian Americans in Southern California, where one in five residents are Asian American. There is also a significant Muslim population in the county.

2000

As of the census of 2000, there were 2,846,289 people, 935,287 households, and 667,794 families residing in the county, making Orange County the second most populous county in California. The population density was 1,392/km2 (3,606/sq mi). There were 969,484 housing units at an average density of 474/km2 (1,228/sq mi). The racial makeup of the county was 64.8% White, 13.6% Asian, 1.7% African American, 0.7% Native American, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 14.8% from other races, and 4.1% from two or more races. 30.8% are Hispanic or Latino of any race. 8.9% were of German, 6.9% English and 6.0% Irish ancestry according to Census 2000. 58.6% spoke only English at home; 25.3% spoke Spanish, 4.7% Vietnamese, 1.9% Korean, 1.5% Chinese (Cantonese or Mandarin) and 1.2% Tagalog.

In 1990, still according to the census there were 2,410,556 people residing in the county. The racial makeup of the county was 78.6% White, 10.3% Asian or Pacific Islander, 1.8% African American, 0.5% Native American, and 8.8% from other races. 23.4% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Out of 935,287 households, 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.9% married couples were living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.6% were non-families. 21.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.00 and the average family size was 3.48.

Ethnic change has been transforming the population. By 2009, nearly 45 percent of the residents spoke a language other than English at home. Whites now comprise only 45 percent of the population, while the numbers of Hispanics grow steadily, along with Vietnamese, Korean and Chinese families. The percentage of foreign-born residents jumped to 30 percent in 2008 from 6 percent in 1970. The mayor of Irvine, Sukhee Kang, was born in Korea, making him the first Korean-American to run a major American city. “We have 35 languages spoken in our city,” Kang observed. The population is diverse age-wise, with 27.0% under the age of 18, 9.4% from 18 to 24, 33.2% from 25 to 44, 20.6% from 45 to 64, and 9.9% 65 years of age or older. The median age is 33 years. For every 100 females there were 99.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.7 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $61,899, and the median income for a family was $75,700 (these figures had risen to $71,601 and $81,260 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males had a median income of $45,059 versus $34,026 for females. The per capita income for the county was $25,826. About 7.0% of families and 10.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.2% of those under age 18 and 6.2% of those age 65 or over.

Residents of Orange County are known as "Orange Countians".

Religion

Orange County is the base for several religious organizations: Both Armenian churches were presented with a resolution declaring every April 24 Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day by the Orange County Board of Supervisors, passed unanimously on May 10, 2016.

  • Reverend Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral is in Garden Grove. As part of bankruptcy proceedings, it was sold to the Catholic Church.
  • The Newport Beach California Temple, one of four temples operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Southern California.
  • Family International, also known as "The Children of God", was founded in 1968 in Huntington Beach by David Berg.
  • The Islamic Center of Irvine
  • The Shia Islamic Center of Orange County (IECOC)
  • Chuck Smith, early leader in the Jesus People movement and founder of Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa.
  • Pao Fa Temple in Irvine is one of the largest Buddhist monasteries and temples in the United States.
  • The Purpose Driven Life author Rick Warren and his Saddleback Church (the largest church in California) are in Lake Forest.
  • The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange headed by Bishop Kevin Vann. There are about 1.04 million Catholics in Orange County.
  • Trinity Broadcasting Network began as Channel 40 in Tustin, now in Costa Mesa.
  • Monasteries of the Vedanta Society and St. Michael's Abbey are located in Trabuco Canyon.
  • The Vineyard Christian Fellowship movement began in Orange County.
  • The Jain Center of Southern California in Buena Park, California, largest center for followers of Jain faith, originally started by Jains from India
  • The Islamic Society of Orange County in Garden Grove. Established in 1976 and is one of the largest Mosques in US.
  • The Sikh Center of Orange County located in Santa Ana
  • Islamic Institute of Orange County, an Islamic Center in Orange County.

Transportation

Transit in Orange County is offered primarily by the Orange County Transportation Authority. The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) cited OCTA as the best large public transportation system in the United States for 2005. OCTA manages the county's bus network and funds the construction and maintenance of local streets, highways, and freeways; regulates taxicab services; maintains express toll lanes through the median of California State Route 91; and works with Southern California's Metrolink to provide commuter rail service along three lines—the Orange County Line, the 91 Line, and the Inland Empire-Orange County Line.

Major highways

So Cal Coastline photo D Ramey Logan
State Route 1 winds down the Orange County Coastline over Corona Del Mar state Beach

Ground transportation in Orange County relies heavily on three major interstate highways: the Santa Ana Freeway (I-5), the San Diego Freeway (I-405 and I-5 south of Irvine), and the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605), which only briefly enters Orange County territory in the northwest. The other freeways in the county are state highways, and include the perpetually congested Riverside and Artesia Freeway (SR 91) and the Garden Grove Freeway (SR 22) running east-west, and the Orange Freeway (SR 57), the Costa Mesa Freeway (SR/SR 55), the Laguna Freeway (SR 133), the San Joaquin Transportation Corridor (SR 73), the Eastern Transportation Corridor (SR 261, SR 133, SR 241), and the Foothill Transportation Corridor (SR 241) running north-south. Minor stub freeways include the Richard M. Nixon Freeway (SR 90), also known as Imperial Highway, and the southern terminus of Pacific Coast Highway (SR 1). There are no U.S. Highways in Orange County, though two existed in the county until the mid-1960s: 91 and 101. 91 went through what is now the state route of the same number, and 101 was replaced by Interstate 5. SR-1 was once a bypass of US-101 (Route 101A).

  • I-5 (CA).svg Interstate 5
  • I-405 (CA).svg Interstate 405
  • I-605 (CA).svg Interstate 605
  • California 1.svg State Route 1
  • California 22.svg State Route 22
  • California 39.svg State Route 39
  • California 55.svg State Route 55
  • California 57.svg State Route 57
  • California 73.svg State Route 73
  • California 74.svg State Route 74
  • California 90.svg State Route 90
  • California 91.svg State Route 91
  • California 133.svg State Route 133
  • California 142.svg State Route 142
  • California 241.svg State Route 241
  • California 261.svg State Route 261

Bus

The bus network comprises 6,542 stops on 77 lines, running along most major streets, and accounts for 210,000 boardings a day. The fleet of 817 buses is gradually being replaced by CNG (Compressed natural gas)-powered vehicles, which already represent over 40% of the total fleet. Service is operated by OCTA employees and First Transit under contract. OCTA operates one bus rapid transit service, Bravo, on Harbor Boulevard. In addition, OCTA offers paratransit service for the disabled, also operated by MV.

Rail

Starting in 1992, Metrolink has operated three commuter rail lines through Orange County, and has also maintained Rail-to-Rail service with parallel Amtrak service. On a typical weekday, over 40 trains run along the Orange County Line, the 91 Line and the Inland Empire-Orange County Line. Along with Metrolink riders on parallel Amtrak lines, these lines generate approximately 15,000 boardings per weekday. Metrolink also began offering weekend service on the Orange County Line and the Inland Empire-Orange County line in the summer of 2006. As ridership has steadily increased in the region, new stations have opened at Anaheim Canyon, Buena Park, Tustin, and Laguna Niguel/Mission Viejo. Plans for a future station in Placentia are underway and is expected to be completed by 2014.

Since 1938, the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad and later Amtrak, has operated the Pacific Surfliner regional passenger train route (previously named the San Diegan until 2000) through Orange County. The route includes stops at eight stations in Orange County including San Clemente Pier (selected trips), San Juan Capistrano, Laguna Niguel/Mission Viejo (selected trips), Irvine, Santa Ana, Orange (selected trips), Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center (ARTIC), and Fullerton Transportation Center.

A streetcar line in Anaheim is undergoing environmental impact assessment. This line will connect the Disneyland Resort, Convention Center, and Angel Stadium to the ARTIC transportation hub, in the city of Anaheim. The Santa Ana/Garden Grove Fixed Guideway Project plans a streetcar line connecting Downtown Santa Ana to the Depot at Santa Ana has completed the environmental document and is entering the design phase. OCTA has also proposed connecting the two systems via Harbor Boulevard and the West Santa Ana Branch corridor.

Sea

A car and passenger ferry service, the Balboa Island Ferry, comprising three ferries running every five minutes, operates within Newport Harbor between Balboa Peninsula and Balboa Island in Newport Beach. The Catalina Flyer connects the Balboa Peninsula to Avalon with daily round-trip passage through about nine months of the year. The Catalina Express connects Dana Point to Avalon (with departures from two greater Long Beach ports also connecting to Two Harbors).

Air

Orange County's only major airport is John Wayne Airport. Although its abbreviation (SNA) refers to Santa Ana, the airport is in fact located in unincorporated territory surrounded by the cities of Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, and Irvine. Unincorporated Orange County (including the John Wayne Airport) has mailing addresses, which go through the Santa Ana Post Office. For this reason, SNA was chosen as the IATA Code for the airport. The actual Destination Moniker which appears on most Arrival/Departure Monitors in airports throughout the United States is "Orange County", which is the common nickname used for the OMB Metropolitan Designation: Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, California. Its modern Thomas F. Riley Terminal handles over 9 million passengers annually through 14 different airlines.

Arts and culture

Points of interest

6505-Disneyland&Hotel
1965 aerial photo of Anaheim Disneyland, Disneyland Hotel with its Monorail Station. The Disneyland Heliport, surrounding orange groves, Santa Ana Freeway (now I-5) and the Melodyland Theater "in the round," and part of the City of Anaheim. Anaheim Stadium can be seen under construction near the upper left.

The area's warm Mediterranean climate and 42 miles (68 km) of year-round beaches attract millions of tourists annually. Huntington Beach is a hot spot for sunbathing and surfing; nicknamed "Surf City, U.S.A.", it is home to many surfing competitions. "The Wedge", at the tip of The Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach, is one of the most famous body surfing spots in the world. Southern California surf culture is prominent in Orange County's beach cities.

Other tourist destinations include the theme parks Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim and Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park. Since the 2011 closure of Wild Rivers in Irvine, the county is home to just one water park: Soak City in Buena Park. The Anaheim Convention Center is the largest such facility on the West Coast. The old town area in the City of Orange (the traffic circle at the middle of Chapman Ave. at Glassell) still maintains its 1950s image, and appeared in the That Thing You Do! movie.

Little Saigon is another tourist destination, being home to the largest concentration of Vietnamese people outside of Vietnam. There are also sizable Taiwanese, Chinese, and Korean communities, particularly in western Orange County. This is evident in several Asian-influenced shopping centers in Asian American hubs like the city of Irvine.

Historical points of interest include Mission San Juan Capistrano, the renowned destination of migrating swallows. The Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum is in Yorba Linda and the Richard Nixon Birthplace home, located on the grounds of the Library, is a National Historic Landmark. John Wayne's yacht, the Wild Goose or USS YMS-328, is in Newport Beach. Other notable structures include the home of Madame Helena Modjeska, located in Modjeska Canyon on Santiago Creek; Ronald Reagan Federal Building and Courthouse in Santa Ana, the largest building in the county; the historic Balboa Pavilion in Newport Beach; and the Huntington Beach Pier. The county has nationally known centers of worship, such as Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, the largest house of worship in California; Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, one of the largest churches in the United States; and the Calvary Chapel.

Since the premiere in fall 2003 of the hit Fox series The O.C., and the 2007 Bravo series "The Real Housewives of Orange County" tourism has increased with travelers from across the globe hoping to see the sights seen in the shows.

Orange County has some of the most exclusive and expensive neighborhoods in the U.S., many along the Orange Coast, and some in north Orange County.

In popular culture

Orange County has been the setting for numerous written works and motion pictures, as well as a popular location for shooting motion pictures.

The city of San Juan Capistrano is the place where writer Johnston McCulley located the first novella about Zorro, entitled The Curse of Capistrano. It was published in 1919 and later renamed The Mark of Zorro.

Communities

Cities

Unincorporated communities

See also: List of neighborhoods and unincorporated communities in Orange County

These communities are outside of city limits in unincorporated county territory.

Planned communities

Orange County has a history of large planned communities. Nearly 30 percent of the county was created as master planned communities, the most notable being the City of Irvine, Coto de Caza, Anaheim Hills, Tustin Ranch, Tustin Legacy, Ladera Ranch, Talega, Rancho Santa Margarita, and Mission Viejo. Irvine is often referred to as a model master-planned city because its villages of Woodbridge, Northwood, University Park, and Turtle Rock that were laid out by the Irvine Company of the mid-1960s before it was bought by a group of investors that included Donald Bren.

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Orange County.

county seat

Rank City/Town/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Anaheim City 336,265
2 Santa Ana City 324,528
3 Irvine City 212,375
4 Huntington Beach City 189,992
5 Garden Grove City 170,883
6 Orange City 136,416
7 Fullerton City 135,161
8 Costa Mesa City 109,960
9 Mission Viejo City 93,305
10 Westminster City 89,701
11 Newport Beach City 85,186
12 Buena Park City 80,530
13 Lake Forest City 77,264
14 Tustin City 75,540
15 Yorba Linda City 64,234
16 San Clemente City 63,522
17 Laguna Niguel City 62,979
18 La Habra City 60,239
19 Fountain Valley City 55,313
20 Placentia City 50,533
21 Rancho Santa Margarita City 47,853
22 Aliso Viejo City 47,823
23 Cypress City 47,802
24 Brea City 39,282
25 Stanton City 38,186
26 San Juan Capistrano City 34,953
27 Dana Point City 33,351
28 Laguna Hills City 30,344
29 North Tustin CDP 24,917
30 Seal Beach City 24,168
31 Ladera Ranch CDP 22,980
32 Laguna Beach City 22,723
33 Laguna Woods City 16,192
34 La Palma City 15,568
35 Coto de Caza CDP 14,866
36 Los Alamitos City 11,449
37 Rossmoor CDP 10,244
38 Midway City CDP 8,485
39 Villa Park City 5,812
40 Sunset Beach CDP (annexed by city of Huntington Beach in 2011) 971
41 Las Flores CDP 5,971

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