Current Great Park Features
The Orange County Great Park features 1,300 acres of parks, amenities, attractions, and open space. See below for more information on current features of the Great Park available to the community.
Located near the Great Park Balloon, the 4,762-square-foot Visitors Center was the first newly constructed permanent structure to open on the former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro. It provides visitors with a welcoming first stop for rides on the Great Park Balloon and Carousel. It features a large lobby, restroom facilities and office space.
GREAT PARK BALLOON
The Great Park Balloon is the Orange County Great Park’s iconic attraction. With the ability to hold 25–30 passengers and soar 400 feet above the surrounding landscape, it offers an unmatched 360-degree view that spans 40 miles on a clear day. Visit the Great Park Balloon & Carousel page for information on hours, rates, and more.
An Orange County tradition, updated with vintage-inspired scenic artwork, is a favorite for kids of all ages. Visit the Great Park Balloon & Carousel page for information on hours, rates, and more.
KIDS ROCK PLAYGROUND
Kids Rock Playground is inspired by educating young guests about conservation ecology and the water cycle. A group of misting shade structures, climbing rocks, “underground tunnels,” a seating area made from recycled runway concrete, and illustrated lakes and streams on recycled rubber flooring come together to form an educationally unique and environmentally conscious space that is safe, fun, and relaxing.
The Terraced Lawn connects the Great Park Sports Complex to the Palm Court Arts Complex and Great Park Balloon area, and serves as an outdoor performance venue for many Great Park events including the annual summer tradition, Movies on the Lawn.
GREAT PARK SPORTS COMPLEX
The 194-acre Great Park Sports Complex is one of the largest sports complexes in the United States, and is the hub of activity for athletes of all ages in Southern California. The Great Park has been home to many tournaments. The expanded Sports Complex now includes:
- A Tennis Complex, with one Championship Court and an additional 24 lighted tennis courts;
- A Championship Soccer Stadium, with seating for 2,500 spectators, locker rooms, training facilities and more;
- 24 soccer and lacrosse fields;
- A Championship Sand Volleyball Court with four additional lighted sand volleyball courts;
- A children’s play area, perfect for smaller, less competitive players;
- Four lighted basketball courts;
- A Baseball & Softball Complex, with one Championship Baseball Stadium, one Championship Softball Stadium, and 10 additional lighted ball diamonds;
- The 30-acre South Lawn, which highlights two natural and two artificial tournament-quality, lighted fields, a spectator viewing area, giant chess sets, an extension of the Walkable Historical Timeline, a facility operations building with restrooms, and a one-mile Kaiser Permanente Thrive Path for walkers and runners; and a pair of reflecting ponds with a redwood viewing pier;
- And finally, a North Lawn featuring a non-lighted, 7-acre multipurpose recreation area home to sports and activities of all types.
Visit ocgp.org/sportscomplex for more information.
PALM COURT ARTS COMPLEX
Created from two renovated squadron support buildings, the Palm Court Arts Complex serves as the Great Park’s cultural campus, supporting the development of fresh, interdisciplinary public arts programming. It includes the Great Park Gallery, Great Park Artist Studios, and a shaded outdoor performance plaza adorned with 54 Canary Island date palms. Visit ocgp.org/arts for information on current exhibitions and more.
HISTORIC HANGAR 244
This former squadron complex hangar has been carefully restored as a 10,000 square-foot special event space. It is now home to the Heritage and Aviation Exhibition, featuring World War II airplanes, historical images, displays, and artifacts that that tell the story of the Great Park from its agricultural roots to its role in the military as Marine Corps Air Station El Toro. The exhibition includes:
- World War II Airplanes: N3N-3 Canary and SNJ-5 TExan
- Airforce C-135A Stratolifter Memorial: In honor of United States Airmen and Marines who perished in the Loma Ridge crash departing Marine Corps Air Station El Toro on June 25, 1965
- History Room: Transport back in time to WWII
- Farmers to Flyers: Learn significant events that transformed Irvine’s agricultural land into an active military base
FARM + FOOD LAB
The Farm + Food Lab is a 2-acre urban agriculture demonstration garden that offers a hands-on gardening experience featuring themed planters with fruits, flowers, vegetables, and herbs. The Farm + Food Lab is maintained by the University of California Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners of Orange County. Visit the Farm + Food Lab page for more information.
Every Sunday, the Great Park Certified Farmers Market offers fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables; handcrafted artisan products; and gourmet food trucks. Visit the Farmers Market page for more information.
THE GIVING GROVE
The Great Park donates fruit from the Giving Grove to local food banks. Halvajian Desert Nursery donated the orange trees in the Giving Grove to the Great Park.