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Orange, CA (Population: 128,821)

The city of Orange is located in Orange County, approximately three miles north of the county seat of Santa Ana and 32 miles southeast of Los Angeles. Orange has a population of 128,821 (2000) and is nicknamed the “Plaza City” because it was the only city in California that was built around a central plaza in the form of a roundabout, which is still there today.

What is unusual about Orange is that it has preserved many of the pre-1920's era homes in its Old Towne Historic District. In fact, the one square mile area surrounding the plaza contains many of the original structures that were built after the city's incorporation in 1888. In fact, the oldest operating bank and the oldest operating soda fountain in Orange County are located here. According to State Historic Research Surveys, Orange has the second largest concentration of historic buildings in California. Furthermore, Orange's Old Towne District is the largest in the state to be listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Old Towne Orange boasts a wide array of architectural styles, some of which include Craftsman Bungalow, Hip Roof Cottage, Mediterranean, Prairie, Spanish Colonial, and Victorian. Because of it's small town ambiance and antiquated look, many television shows and movies have selected the city of Orange and its Historic District as a backdrop.

There is much to do in Orange, whether you're into shopping and dining, arts and culture, or outdoor recreation. The Plaza at Old Towne is a great place to start. Right in this area, you have several outdoor dining opportunities, specialty shops, and the central plaza park. More than 60 antique dealers line the streets of downtown, making Orange the antique capital of Southern California. The Block at Orange is another great destination for food, shopping, film, and fun. Additionally, The Village at Orange features more than 100 specialty shops, restaurants, and more. Other popular shopping and dining spots include Stadium Promenade and Town & Country. For outdoor lovers, Orange has trails, several large parks, lakes, a wildlife sanctuary, and a nature center. The Orange County Zoo, housed by Irvine Park, is also located in this quaint city.