Heroes Hall

Heroes Hall Heroes Hall at OC Fair & Event Center is a year-round veterans museum and education center that celebrates the legacy of Orange County veterans and others who have served our nation.

OC Fair & Event Center’s (OCFEC) new permanent, year-round exhibition center, Heroes Hall, will celebrate the legacy of Orange County veterans and others who have served our nation. The center features exhibition and events, including Voices: Veterans Storytelling Project, and an annual Veterans Day Celebration. OCFEC property was once part of the Santa Ana Army Air Base, a 1,300-plus-acre training facility used during World War II. Orange Coast College, Vanguard University, Costa Mesa High School, Davis Elementary School, Tewinkle Park and several commercial and residential areas are also on former air base land. The Heroes Hall Veterans Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, manages and fund raises for the exhibit. For information on getting involved, visit ocheroeshall.org. Visit www.ocfair.com/heroeshall for more details.

Today we salute Lieutenant Junior Grade Fred Leroy Dungan, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions in 1944 during...
07/06/2019

Today we salute Lieutenant Junior Grade Fred Leroy Dungan, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions in 1944 during World War II.

Dungan was honored for serving as pilot of a carrier-based airplane, which was attacked over enemy territory by several fighter planes. Although alone and outnumbered, through a tremendous act of bravery and heroism, Dungan did not break away from the fighter planes, but helped shoot down four of the enemy planes. After leaving the aerial battle severely wounded, he was able to complete a successful carrier landing.

Dungan also has a plaque at Heroes Hall's Orange County Walk of Honor.

Happy Independence Day!We honor and thank those who have helped keep the United States safe and free. Thank you for your...
07/04/2019

Happy Independence Day!

We honor and thank those who have helped keep the United States safe and free. Thank you for your service.

🥳🥳 #ocfairfun #ocfaircountdown
07/02/2019

🥳🥳 #ocfairfun #ocfaircountdown

The 2019 OC Fair is ROLLIN' in. It's only 10 days away! #ocfairfun #ocfaircountdown

Today is PTSD Awareness Day and we recognize the condition that many veterans and military personnel suffer from. If you...
06/27/2019

Today is PTSD Awareness Day and we recognize the condition that many veterans and military personnel suffer from.

If you know anyone who is suffering from PTSD, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers resources at ptsd.va.gov/index.asp.

On this day in military history: In 1950, forces from North Korea crossed the 38th parallel and invaded South Korea, whi...
06/25/2019

On this day in military history: In 1950, forces from North Korea crossed the 38th parallel and invaded South Korea, which set off the 3-year Korean War.

Often called "the forgotten war," Heroes Hall remembers all those who served in the Korean War, including a commemorative plaque in our Walk of Honor.

If you love Heroes Hall and all things military, why not sign up for our newsletter?Learn more about what's happening at...
06/24/2019

If you love Heroes Hall and all things military, why not sign up for our newsletter?

Learn more about what's happening at Orange County's only veterans museum, plus learn about the stories, sacrifices and strength of veterans who fought for our freedom.

Sign up here: ocfair.com/newsletter

Students and staff from Santa Ana Unified School District's Adult Transition Program spent a day at Heroes Hall. We had ...
06/22/2019

Students and staff from Santa Ana Unified School District's Adult Transition Program spent a day at Heroes Hall. We had a blast with the students. Thank you for visiting our museum and coloring postcards for our troops! And thank you to the Heroes Hall Veterans Foundation for providing funding for the buses!

Today we salute Lt. Donald Lewis, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions during World War II.Lt. Lewis was honor...
06/20/2019

Today we salute Lt. Donald Lewis, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions during World War II.

Lt. Lewis was honored for participating in a daring strike against the main Japanese fleet, where he selected an enemy aircraft carrier as a target and through skillful maneuvers to evade fierce enemy fighter opposition, executed a dive-bombing attack on the enemy vessel and scored a direct hit. This direct hit severely damaged the hostile ship. Lt. Lewis contributed materially to the success of operations in this historic engagement.

Lt. Lewis also has a plaque at Heroes Hall's Orange County Walk of Honor.

Kate Ball, a teacher at Sage Hill School, recently brought her students on a field trip to Heroes Hall, where they spoke...
06/18/2019

Kate Ball, a teacher at Sage Hill School, recently brought her students on a field trip to Heroes Hall, where they spoke with 3 former POWs and toured the exhibits. Here's what she said about the visit:

“Visiting Heroes Hall was an invaluable experience for my students. Upon arriving we were given a welcome and overview of the Medal of Honor Courtyard. Students then freely explored a special exhibit dedicated to American Prisoners of War. The highlight of our visit was our one-on-one Q&A session with three former prisoners of war from WWII and Korea. Each of their experiences were powerful testimony to the reality and humanity of war. Students were also given a guided tour of the SAAAB Story, which highlighted local Orange County history. Overall, it was a powerful experience that gave students a combination of facts and real life experiences of war.”

For more information on setting up tours, visit ocfair.com/heroes-hall/tours.

Today we recognized the U.S. Army's 244th birthday. We would like to thank everyone who came out to celebrate the legacy...
06/14/2019

Today we recognized the U.S. Army's 244th birthday. We would like to thank everyone who came out to celebrate the legacy of this military branch! 🇺🇸

This week is National Flag Week, culminating in Flag Day on June 14. From the Heroes Hall Instructional Guide, there are...
06/11/2019

This week is National Flag Week, culminating in Flag Day on June 14.

From the Heroes Hall Instructional Guide, there are specific guidelines to help people show the proper respect for the American flag. Among them:

-- When the flag is flown outside a home, it should only be out during the daylight hours.
-- When the flag is attached to a flat surface, the flag code states that the stars should be on the upper left hand corner.
-- The flag should never be dipped to any person or thing and should never be allowed to touch the ground.
-- The flag should not be used to carry other articles, and it should never be used as clothing.
-- The flag should not be drawn on, or marked up in any way. It should not be tied up but allowed to fly free.

Learn more about what’s inside the Heroes Hall Instructional Guide at ocfair.com/heroes-hall/educational-materials.

OC Fair & Event Center staff recently visited the Santa Ana Civic Center to view the Vietnam War-era A-4 Skyhawk jet tha...
06/08/2019

OC Fair & Event Center staff recently visited the Santa Ana Civic Center to view the Vietnam War-era A-4 Skyhawk jet that will moved to Heroes Hall to make room for new county buildings. The aircraft is scheduled to be transported to its new home by the end of September and to be installed prior to a Veterans Day dedication ceremony.

Today is the 75th anniversary of D-Day. On June 6, 1944, more than 150,000 troops landed on the shores of Normandy, Fran...
06/06/2019

Today is the 75th anniversary of D-Day. On June 6, 1944, more than 150,000 troops landed on the shores of Normandy, France, which helped turn the tide against Nazi Germany during World War II.

In recognition, Heroes Hall is displaying a map of the Invasion of Normandy in the upstairs exhibit hall, and a flower arrangement has been placed to honor whose who lost their lives that day.

Today we salute Capt. Leon M. Williamson, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions during the Battle of Midway on ...
06/04/2019

Today we salute Capt. Leon M. Williamson, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions during the Battle of Midway on June 4-5 in World War II.

Capt. Williamson was honored for attacking an enemy aircraft carrier and, in the face of artillery fire, dove his plane to the perilously low altitude of 400 feet before releasing a bomb to damage enemy territory. The following day, he took part in an assault which resulted in the severe damage of an enemy battleship.

Capt. Williamson also has a plaque at Heroes Hall's Orange County Walk of Honor.

Are you watching the series, "Catch-22" on Hulu? It's based on the novel by Joseph Heller, who was stationed at the Sant...
06/02/2019

Are you watching the series, "Catch-22" on Hulu? It's based on the novel by Joseph Heller, who was stationed at the Santa Ana Army Air Base in 1942 during World War II.

Heller based Catch-22 on his war experiences, which included his pre-flight training at SAAAB.

Today we salute Army Lt. Col. Richard D. Wandke, who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions in the ...
05/31/2019

Today we salute Army Lt. Col. Richard D. Wandke, who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions in the Vietnam War on May 27, 1969.

Lt. Col. Wandke was honored for directing artillery fire for hours against an overwhelming enemy attack while wounded himself, helping to protect and evacuate those who were critically injured or died.

Lt. Col. Wandke also has a plaque at Heroes Hall's Orange County Walk of Honor.

"May we never forget freedom isn't free." On this Memorial Day, we remember and honor those we have lost. Thank you for ...
05/27/2019

"May we never forget freedom isn't free."
On this Memorial Day, we remember and honor those we have lost. Thank you for your service.

Lynn Welker of Newport Beach dropped off three boxes of beautiful books for our reading library. They were from her late...
05/25/2019

Lynn Welker of Newport Beach dropped off three boxes of beautiful books for our reading library. They were from her late husband's prized military-book collection, and she donated them in his honor (John Lawrence Welker, 1935-2018). Thank you, Lynn, for your donation, and for sharing this wonderful wealth of information with our veteran community!

Did you know? New York Yankees star Joe DiMaggio was stationed at the Santa Ana Army Air Base, where the OC Fair now sit...
05/24/2019

Did you know? New York Yankees star Joe DiMaggio was stationed at the Santa Ana Army Air Base, where the OC Fair now sits.

Not surprisingly, Sgt. DiMaggio played a lot of baseball while stationed at SAAAB, competing against local college and semi-pro teams.

Find out more about the SAAAB and its fascinating history by taking a visit to Heroes Hall, open Wednesdays-Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The National WWII Museum is offering a way to honor a loved one in the military by purchasing a commemorative brick that...
05/20/2019

The National WWII Museum is offering a way to honor a loved one in the military by purchasing a commemorative brick that will live at the museum for generations to come.

Find out how at nationalww2museum.org/give.

Today we celebrate Armed Forces Day.Armed Forces Day is a way to honor all those currently serving in our U.S. military....
05/18/2019

Today we celebrate Armed Forces Day.

Armed Forces Day is a way to honor all those currently serving in our U.S. military. We thank you for your service and sacrifice!

The day is different than Memorial Day (remembering those who lost their lives) or Veterans Day (honoring those who already served).

On this day in 1969, Marine Col. Eugene R. Brady's actions in the Vietnam War were later awarded with the Navy Cross.  C...
05/15/2019

On this day in 1969, Marine Col. Eugene R. Brady's actions in the Vietnam War were later awarded with the Navy Cross.

Col. Brady was honored for evacuating seriously wounded Marines into a transport helicopter while under heavy enemy fire.

Col. Brady also has a plaque at Heroes Hall's Orange County Walk of Honor. Come take a visit to read more about him or the dozen other honored heroes at ocfair.com/heroes-hall/exhibitions.

One of the special contests at the 2019 OC Fair is making Quilts of Valor, which are handmade quilts given to U.S. servi...
05/13/2019

One of the special contests at the 2019 OC Fair is making Quilts of Valor, which are handmade quilts given to U.S. service-members and veterans touched by war. The deadline to register is May 24.

Read the full rules on how to enter at ocfair.com/howtoenter/crafts-hobbies.

Today is Military Spouse Appreciation Day, where we recognize the sacrifice, dignity and strength of all those partners ...
05/10/2019

Today is Military Spouse Appreciation Day, where we recognize the sacrifice, dignity and strength of all those partners who serve their country in other ways.

Make sure you say thank you to a military spouse today!

Turner Classic Movies is showing World War II-era movies on Thursdays in May and June in honor of the 75th anniversary o...
05/09/2019

Turner Classic Movies is showing World War II-era movies on Thursdays in May and June in honor of the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

Featured movies include "Bataan," "Sahara," "The End of the Affair," "The Clock" and dozens more.

See the full schedule at: tcm.com/wwii.

On this day in military history:-- In 1945, the Allies celebrated V-E Day after defeating Germany and the Nazis in World...
05/08/2019

On this day in military history:

-- In 1945, the Allies celebrated V-E Day after defeating Germany and the Nazis in World War II. Four months later, the war would be over after Japan surrendered.

For more military history, come take a visit to Heroes Hall, open Wednesdays-Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Info: ocfair.com/heroes-hall.

May is National Military Appreciation Month and we appreciate our troops and veterans who have served their country over...
05/02/2019

May is National Military Appreciation Month and we appreciate our troops and veterans who have served their country over the years.

Learn more about how we honor the military at Heroes Hall at ocfair.com/heroes-hall. Or better yet, come take a visit!

Richard C. Higgins, a Pearl Harbor survivor, visited Heroes Hall over the weekend. He was on Ford Island on Dec. 7, 1941...
05/01/2019

Richard C. Higgins, a Pearl Harbor survivor, visited Heroes Hall over the weekend. He was on Ford Island on Dec. 7, 1941, when Pearl Harbor was attacked. He went on to serve 20 years in the U.S. Navy before retiring. Thank you, Richard, for your service.

On this day in military history, 2 significant events occurred: -- In 1945, Adolf Hitler and his new bride, Eva Braun, c...
04/30/2019

On this day in military history, 2 significant events occurred:

-- In 1945, Adolf Hitler and his new bride, Eva Braun, committed suicide by swallowing cyanide capsules (he also shot himself) during World War II. Eight days later, Germany surrendered.

-- In 1975, the Fall of Saigon happens when the North Vietnamese make a final push into the city, effectively ending the Vietnam War.

For more military history, come take a visit to Heroes Hall, open Wednesdays-Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Info: ocfair.com/heroes-hall.

On this day in 1945, George Emerson, who lives in Huntington Beach, was finally released from a POW prison camp in Germa...
04/29/2019

On this day in 1945, George Emerson, who lives in Huntington Beach, was finally released from a POW prison camp in Germany.

He and the 8 other crew members on his B-17 bomber crashed after a shot-down plane veered into their aircraft. George was the only one who survived, and was captured by German troops.

Come take a visit to learn more about George and other Orange County POWs. Read more about our POW exhibit at ocfair.com/heroes-hall/exhibitions.

04/26/2019

Notice: Heroes Hall is open this weekend only with paid admission to America's Family Pet Expo - Orange County. Parking is $9.

🐶 Pet Expo hours: Friday (4/26) 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday (4/27) 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sunday (4/27) 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

🇺🇸 Heroes Hall hours: Friday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

It was 3 years ago today that the 50,000-pound, two-story WWII-era building formerly of the Santa Ana Army Air Base was ...
04/25/2019

It was 3 years ago today that the 50,000-pound, two-story WWII-era building formerly of the Santa Ana Army Air Base was moved a half-mile through the OC Fair & Event Center to where it now sits as Heroes Hall.

Come take a tour of the museum in all its glory. More info: ocfair.com/heroes-hall.

Happy 111th birthday to the Army Reserve! Created on April 23, 1908, soldiers in the Army Reserve keep their civilian ca...
04/23/2019

Happy 111th birthday to the Army Reserve! Created on April 23, 1908, soldiers in the Army Reserve keep their civilian careers or schooling while still being trained to serve their country.

Today begins Preservation Week, a national campaign by the American Library Association to raise awareness about the nee...
04/22/2019

Today begins Preservation Week, a national campaign by the American Library Association to raise awareness about the need for preservation of documents, photos, books, audio and more.

We know a little something about that at Heroes Hall. Learn about our latest exhibits and how to come take a visit at ocfair.com/heroes-hall.

04/21/2019

Notice: We will be closed today in observance of the Easter holiday.

We're open again Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. See you then!

Today in military history: Gen. Douglas MacArthur made his last official appearance by addressing Congress on April 19, ...
04/19/2019

Today in military history: Gen. Douglas MacArthur made his last official appearance by addressing Congress on April 19, 1951, more than a week after being relieved of his command during the Korean War.

For more military history, come take a visit to Heroes Hall, open today and tomorrow (Friday & Saturday), from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Info: ocfair.com/heroes-hall.

Students at Sage Hill School took a trip to Heroes Hall and got a chance to interact with former POWs Dan Oldewage, Lloy...
04/18/2019

Students at Sage Hill School took a trip to Heroes Hall and got a chance to interact with former POWs Dan Oldewage, Lloyd Roberts and George Emerson in conjunction with the exhibit, "Victory From Within: The American Prisoner of War Experience."

To schedule a tour for your group, see ocfair.com/heroes-hall/tours.

It's Discovery Day again from 9 a.m. to noon tomorrow (Thursday, April 18). Among the things you can do: -- Interact wit...
04/17/2019

It's Discovery Day again from 9 a.m. to noon tomorrow (Thursday, April 18). Among the things you can do:
-- Interact with all the animals at Centennial Farm
-- Decorate postcards to send to U.S. troops
-- Plant a radish seed to take home with you

While you're there, head over to Heroes Hall and check out its latest exhibit, "Victory From Within: The American Prisoner of War Experience," which will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Today's your last day to catch OC Fair's Imaginology STEAM-related activities and exhibits. We're here until 5 p.m. Reme...
04/14/2019

Today's your last day to catch OC Fair's Imaginology STEAM-related activities and exhibits. We're here until 5 p.m. Remember, Heroes Hall is open today, and always open Wednesday-Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Our latest exhibit is "Victory From Within: The American Prisoner of War Experience."

Fort Blisters Boot Camp, presented by Heroes Hall, is in full swing at OC Fair's Imaginology, along with other STEAM-rel...
04/13/2019

Fort Blisters Boot Camp, presented by Heroes Hall, is in full swing at OC Fair's Imaginology, along with other STEAM-related activities, until 5 p.m. Saturday. Or come check us out on our last day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Come design postcards for our U.S. troops at OC Fair's Imaginology, along with various other activities and exhibits thr...
04/13/2019

Come design postcards for our U.S. troops at OC Fair's Imaginology, along with various other activities and exhibits through 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.

04/12/2019

Imaginology has begun! Check out Fort Blisters Boot Camp, presented by Heroes Hall, and hundreds of other activities, events and exhibits. We're open until 3 p.m. Friday, then 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Address

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA
92626

Opening Hours

Wednesday 11:00 - 17:00
Thursday 11:00 - 17:00
Friday 11:00 - 17:00
Saturday 11:00 - 17:00
Sunday 11:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(714) 708-1501

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Heroes Hall posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The Museum

Send a message to Heroes Hall:

Videos

Nearby museums