OC Fair: Ways to Keep Cool

The Costa Mesa festival offers way to up your icy factor (or, at least, find moments of chill-down-ness).

Even if you aren't sure what sort of fried doughnut-topped ice cream corn-coated treat you'll eat, and even if you don't know if you'll pet a goat, a pig, or both, you can count on one for-sure thing when it comes to the OC Fair: You can leave your scarf and mittens at home.

No doubt, on the coolest of semi-foggy nights, skin-gladdening, cool-down breezes blows over the concerts rocking the Pacific Amphitheatre.

But if you're wandering the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa by day, and it is noon, or 2 p.m., and the sun's dial has been cranked up to full blast, you'll wish you had a fast way to find a frosty sweet and/or spot.

The fair, having been around since the late 1800s, and having seen well over one hundred Augusts, knows the eighth month can deliver hot heat on a platter to Southern California.

Sure, you can always swing by after the sun goes night-night. But there are other ways to find cool-a-tude, too. The people behind the spectacular, which runs through Sunday, Aug. 13, have shared their tips. Here are a few solid suggestions:

1. There's the Main Mall Water Fountain, where tots love to romp and slosh about on sunshiny days.

2. Head inside to Baja Blues Bar & Restaurant for an icy beverage or The Hangar for "free-to-play games."

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3. The floral exhibits? Always refreshing to the eye, and Gallery 15, which houses the petals, has air-conditioning.

4. The water rides, like Wild Rivers or Pelican Splash in Kid Land? A little soaking can ward off the swelter, at least for a few minutes.

5. The chill-down-inside desserts are plentiful, from shaved ice at Carmelot's to churro gelato sandwiches at Fabe's Churros & Gelatos.

Hydration is key, as is pacing yourself. There are a lot of rings to throw around glass bottles, and rabbits to coo over, and concerts to dance to, and quilts to admire, and the fair has over a week to go.

But with these recent high temperatures, taking some needed breaks in the shade, or indoors, with something to nosh upon from the gelato or shaved ice food group, seems like a sensible, sweet, beat-the-heat thing to do.

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