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Irvine Blog - Posts from Local Experts

Posts for August 2016

Last Days to Experience Mummies at Bowers Museum

Posted by: Amanda Nguyen
Posted on: Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016

(ABOVE) This mummy is that of a man named Nes-Hor, which means "the one who belongs to Horus". Horus is the falcon-headed god of hunting and warfare and is a symbol of power. Nes-Hor worked as a priest in the Temple of Min, in the city of Khent-Min (Akhmim). Nes-Hor's sarcophagus was constructed from wood and shows many patches and repairs made during ancient times. A detailed study of the symbols on the sarcophagus identified Nes-Hor's name, parents' names and occupation. On loan fromBuffalo and Erie County Historical Society.


When visiting the Mummies of the World exhibit at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, I was in absolute awe. Of course, mummies exist worldwide and there are numerous mummification processes, but the only exposure I've had to mummies has been of Egyptian origin. What was so exciting about the Mummies of the World exhibit were the vast artifacts and variety of mummies from so many different places like South America and Europe on display. The exhibit is split into various galleries such as Natural Mummification, Artificial Mummification, Experimental Mummification and Science & Medicine. 

You not only get to physically see mummies but you learn more about where the person or animal came from; the preserved state of the mummies gives you a glimpse into their cultures, way of life and how they became mummies whether through a natural or intentional process.

Over 1.4 million visitors have experienced The Mummies of the World exhibit and this is the first time it has been on display in Orange County. Enjoy and learn about the wonders of Mummies of the World at the Bowers Museum for its last few days - the exhibit closes on September 5, 2016. 





Visiting Hours & Ticket Information 


Three Shrunken Heads
Shrunken heads were prepared and worn by the victor of a battle, believing the victim's power would then be transferred to that victor. Popular in the mid-19th century, shrunken heads were a collectible which became so popular that Europeans created replica shrunken heads from unclaimed bodies. On loan from Buffalo Museum of Science and San Diego Museum of Man. (Photo credit: American Exhibitions, Inc.) 
The Orlovits Family
The Orlovits family is part of a group of 18th-century mummies uncovered in two long-forgotten burial crypts dating back to 1674 just north of Budapest in 1994 during reconstruction on parts of a Dominican church where 265 naturally mummified bodies were uncovered, including religious leaders and important local families who had been interred in the crypts between 1731 and 1838. Michael Orlovits (born 1765), Veronica Orlovits (born 1770) and Johannes Orlovits (born 1800) were among those preserved by the cool, dry air of the crypt and the oil from the pine boards used to build their coffins. 

Egyptian Cat Mummy
Dating back to the early Roman period, the Egyptian cat mummy in Mummies of the World shows how Egyptian cats were ritually embalmed in a lengthy process using salt and various resins. On loan from Buffalo and Erie County Historical

Naturally Mummified Lizard Mummy
Spiny-tailed lizard naturally mummified in the Sahara desert is an example of a modern-day mummy, probably less than 100 years old. Part of the Mummies of the World exhibition at Cincinnati Museum Center, it was mummified by the hot, dry air of the desert. 
Baron von Holz
The Baron von Holz is a 17th-century nobleman who is believed to have died in or near Sommersdorf, Germany during the Thirty Years' War (1618-48). He was discovered in the family crypt underneath the church of the von Crailsheim family's late 14th-century castle, where the bodies of five people had mummified naturally due to the environmental conditions. The Baron was found still wearing his leather boots, as depicted in an 1833 lithograph of the mummies in the crypt.
Ancient Egyptian Sarcophagus
The hieroglyphs of this beautiful sarcophagus tell us that it was made for a woman of wealth, likely more than 2,000 years old. Made by imported Lebanese cedar planks and joined with wooden dowels, decorated with columns of hieroglyphs, which are flanked on both sides with images of the four sons of Horus - from top to bottom: Hapy the baboon, Qebehsenuef the falcon, Duamutef the jackal, and finally Imsety the human-headed god. On loan from: San Diego Museum of Man. 
Information & Images provided by Blaze PR on behalf of Mummies of the World at Bowers Museum.

Embassy Suites-Irvine Celebrates 30 Years

Posted by: Ellen Bell
Posted on: Sunday, Aug 21, 2016


Embassy Suites is celebrating its birthday with a 12 million dollar renovation and guests are invited to join the party.

When Embassy Suites appeared on the city’s landscape since 1986, a gallon of gas cost .89 cents, Ronald Reagan was President, and Tom Cruise soared across movie screens in “Top Gun.”

The hotel offered travelers revolutionary new conveniences like free, made-to-order breakfast, a complimentary cocktail hour, and a configuration of suites that felt more like an apartment than a hotel room.

30 years later, these groundbreaking  concepts are still the foundation of Embassy Suites’ success and the same familiar comforts continue to greet faithful customers. But this year, returning guests are in for a big surprise. 




The 293-room airport hotel has undergone a transformation.  All guest suites and event spaces have been revamped. Its signature 10 story atrium has a modern, California-fresh look and features new architectural elements and waterfalls. Adding to the guest experience, a Starbucks coffee shop will open in late September. 



The dining experience has added new flavor as well. In addition to the traditional morning breakfast and Manager’s Reception in the evening, Embassy Suites is now home to the newly opened Vibrante SoCal Kitchen and Bar, an original dining concept featuring regionally inspired small and share plates modernizing the Mexican tradition.




Sample menu items include Local Rock Cod Fish Tacos, Short Rib Enchiladas, South Coast Farms Stone Fruit Salad and Avocado Hummus with House Flat Bread. There is also an emphasis on local wines from Temecula and Orange County craft beers.

“Reaction from our guests has been wonderful and we are excited to share our new enhancements with our local community,” said Swietlana Cahill, General Manager at Embassy Suites Irvine. “Now with these wonderful new improvements and the inviting Vibrante restaurant and Starbucks Coffee, we’ll be the go-to Orange County location for business or leisure that is just minutes from the Disneyland Resort, world class beaches, shopping, and dining.”



               Embassy Suites - Irvine
               John Wayne Airport
               2120 Main St, Irvine, CA 92614

5 Ways Orange County Celebrates Diversity

Posted by: Guest
Posted on: Tuesday, Aug 16, 2016

Orange County California is a household name; almost everyone has heard of the famed county nestled in sunny Southern California. Though it is widely recognized as a bustling tourist area with an incredible 42 miles of coastline and variety of beaches, you may not realize just how
exciting and diverse Orange County can be. There is a distinct difference between having a diverse population and celebrating that diversity, and Orange County excels in both. Here are a few ways Orange County works to appreciate diversity.

1. St. Paul's Annual Greek Festival

The annual Greek Festival, held in Irvine, CA, is a full-fledged celebration of the many aspects of Greek culture. Live music, Greek dancers, and tours of local Greek Orthodox churches are just the beginning. The festival also boasts a free lesson on basic Greek and, of course, food.

The Greek Festival guarantees a good time for the whole family with carnival rides and pastries for the kids and cooking classes and a slew of shopping opportunities for the adults. Most importantly, however, guests will leave with a comprehensive overview of what makes Greek culture wonderful.

2. The Annual Tet Festival

The Tet Festival is organized and funded by a community-based group devoted to Vietnamese Youth together to celebrate and cherish their heritage. The Tet Festival celebrates Lunar New Year while immersing guests in a vibrant display of Vietnamese culture.

Festivities include live entertainment, games, a wide selection of traditional and less traditional foods, and a firecracker show. The 2015 festival was the largest one of its kind in the world and should be expected to be equally extravagant in the years to come.

3. Orange International Street Fair

The Orange International Street Fair, held in Downtown Orange, is a decades-old celebration of diversity dating back to 1973. Fifteen different streets, each focusing on a different ethnicity, are
the main attraction.

A street devoted to crafts and games is available to keep kids entertained while 42 food and alcohol booths can be found scattered throughout the streets. This is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in the diversity of the area, all in one place.

Irvine Global Festival

The Irvine Global Festival is a truly fantastic display of international pride. Over 50 countries are represented with traditional dancing, music, food, and traditional crafts. Guests can view as
many as 100 live performances, take the kids to the "kids village", shop the many handicraft booths, visit the world religions village, and enjoy food from every corner of the world without leaving Irvine.

5. Cinco de Mayo Celebration

Too many places in the U.S. turn Cinco de Mayo into an excuse to drink and wear offensive costumes. Orange County proudly boasts an authentic, respectful celebration that includes Mariachis, Aztec dancers, and authentic foods and drinks.

Festivals like these are how people get in touch with other cultures and learn to see the world in new ways. There is nothing more valuable than cultural sharing, awareness, and acceptance. Orange County's efforts to celebrate diversity have made it a sought-after region with a robust, healthy real estate market. The beauty of Orange County truly lies in its diversity, creating a lively culture and an enriching experience for visitors and residents alike. 

Catherine Workman
grew up in a small town where she yearned to stretch her wings. Now that she's left the nest, she spends every available weekend exploring different cities across the country and someday, across the world. She started with her friends to share her travels and experiences and hopes to inspire others to embrace the hidden gems of the world.

Image via Pixabay by DharmenRajput


iHeartRadio and Alessia Cara at the Irvine Spectrum this Weekend for the Endless Summer Festival

Posted by: Amanda Nguyen
Posted on: Tuesday, Aug 16, 2016

The Endless Summer Festival is back in its second year to kick off Back-to-School Shopping at the Irvine Spectrum Center this Thursday August 18-Sunday August 20 in which shoppers can enjoy fun activities, and in-store events and promotions at select retailers between 2pm-7pm.

“We had such an amazing turnout at least year’s inaugural event that we’re expanding the festival to three days this year,” said Easther Liu, chief marketing officer for Irvine Company Retail Properties. “This event officially marks the start of one of our busiest shopping seasons at Irvine Spectrum Center and it’s our way to help shoppers find everything they need as they head back to school, plus extend summertime fun."

Event Highlights Include: 

  • Friday, Aug. 19 at Giant Wheel Court. The singer will perform hits such as “Here” and “Wild Things” from her debut album, “Know-­-It-­- All.” Cara is currently on tour with Coldplay
  • An Active Ride Shop Skate Village  at Edwards Court, featuring multiple skate ramps for open skating sessions to the public, as well as demos and lessons from pro skaters
  • An Open-­-air Yearbook Photo Booth at Carousel Court
  • A Nordstrom Beauty Lounge Airstream at Giant Wheel Court will feature complimentary hair styling by T3, as well beauty makeovers by MAC and Dior
  • Enjoy in-store parties each day from 5pm-7pm at select retailers such as Anthropologie, Cotton On, Active Ride Shop, Hurley I NIKE SB, Quiksilver, Irene’s Story, Old Navy, Windsor
More Information and Event Details can be found at the ORANGE COUNTY ZEST!
Images & Information provided by Cornerstone Communications on behalf of the Irvine Spectrum Center

LA Rams Return to OC Fans

Posted by: Ellen Bell
Posted on: Thursday, Aug 04, 2016

Football fans can be a crazy bunch. 

We wait in long lines wearing fuzzy wigs and face paint. We spend hours outside in the freezing cold or the blistering heat in the stands when we could be at home watching from the comforts of our couch instead. We consume food that would never be part of any reasonable, healthy adult's diet.

All for the love of the game.

And any sports fans will tell you that the best part of any fan experience is rooting for the guys on the field. 


This summer pro football has come to Irvine, if only for the month of August, and I had a chance to check out their practice and get a first look at the newly-christened Los Angeles Rams. The UC Irvine campus is the summer home for the Rams, who trotted out onto Crawford Field, wearing new logos and fresh jerseys, ready to make their first impression. 

Orange County has been without a pro football team for decades. The Rams left Anaheim in 1994, leaving thousands of faithful fans behind. So even though this Open Practice was all about new beginnings, there was something very familiar about the experience.

Names like Dickerson and Ferragamo were written on the backs of fans who remember the good old days. But right along side them were throngs of little guys, boys and girls wearing jerseys with names like Goff and Gurley, representing the next generation of Los Angeles Rams fans. 

The Open Practice at UCI is a great idea. It's a chance to heal old wounds with bereft fans who still remember the team's bitter departure. But it's also an opportunity to create new memories with the kids they brought along with them.

There's plenty of seating for the free practices and there are lots of opportunities to see the team in action.  After every practice, kids 14 and under will have a chance to get a few autographs. You can buy a spiffy new jersey or a flag for your front porch. Maybe even pose for a picture with a Rams Cheerleader.

The Rams will pack up camp at the end of August and move back up to LA.  But it's only fitting that they begin this season's campaign right where they left off 22 years ago...

In Orange County. 

For more information and practice schedules...check out the LA Rams website

Filed In: Family Friendly

Get Your Fair Face On at the OC Fair!

Posted by: Terry Winkler
Posted on: Tuesday, Aug 02, 2016

Summer's rolling along quite nicely, but it won't be complete until you gather your fam & friends and head over to the OC Fair. It's really rockin this year and everyone's getting their fair face on! Check out some of the best pics fair goers have shared on Instagram highlighting their day at the fair using #OCFairFace.

Are these pics inspiring you? You KNOW you want some good ol fashioned fair food followed with scoops of cold ice cream. Yeah, you do!

 photo by @coco.loren

photo by @thehealthymouse

photo by @jennay789 

Or maybe the rides are your jam. Slides, swings, zippers. Come on over and feel the rush of the wind in your hair and while you're having the time of your life, be sure to show your fair face. Snap a few selfies using the hashtag #OCfairface and your pic may be featured on the huge screen for all to enjoy.



Into concerts? Then check out all the Concertgoers can enjoy a variety of musical genres and comedy acts in the Toyota Summer Concert Series in the Pacific Amphitheatre featuring nightly live entertainment from artists like Jim Gaffigan, Hunter Hayes and Michael Franti & Spearhead. In The Hangar, music lovers can enjoy almost-like-the-real-thing tribute performances covering music from The Eagles, Billy Joel, Elton John, Fleetwood Mac and Oingo Boingo plus original music from Ozomatli, Stick Figure and HAPA. In the Action Sports Arena, adrenaline junkies can get their fix with extreme events including demolition derby, motocross, monster trucks, mixed martial arts and equestrian arts. As always, concert and action sports tickets include free OC Fair admission.

Foodies can get their fill with a variety of classic treats and unique and new combinations while they fill their minds with culinary demonstrations on baking, canning and more. Guests of all sizes can enjoy the Taste of FairFood on Thursdays from Noon-4 p.m. featuring $2 samples at every vendor.

The OC Fair runs through August 14th. Check out all there is to do and we'll see your fair face soon!

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