EVENTS/THINGS TO DO
In addition to traditional beachside activities and events, Balboa Island and the surrounding areas offer a small town experience with tropical charm. Stroll around Balboa Island and buy yourself a famed chocolate-dipped banana, said to have been first marketed in this waterfront community. Or, drop in an old fashioned candy store for a bag of saltwater taffy and roam the boardwalk to watch the sunset. To learn more about the area, folks can visit the Balboa Island Museum and Historical Society located on South Bay Front. On the mainland, the nearby Orange County Museum of Art exhibits modern and contemporary art, while Fashion Island offers a shopper's paradise in an upscale, open-air mall. Residents can also take part in special events such as the colorful Balboa Island Parade or the world renowned Christmas Boat Parade featuring decorated boats, fabulously decorated houses and parties in the harbor.
Balboa Island residents can attend nearby schools, which are part of the Newport Mesa School District. Harbor View, Newport and Mariners Elementary Schools, Horace Ensign Middle School and Newport Harbor High School offer public education to the young populace. The nearest charter schools are provided by El Sol Santa Ana Science and Arts Academy, Edward B. Cole Academy and the Nova Academy, to name a few.
Orange County boasts a diverse mix of business, including retail trade, service and manufacturing firms. Additional prominent industries of the area include finance, aerospace, electronics, medical/healthcare, education, and government entities. Tourism remains a major contributor to area economy with several family theme parks, including Disneyland and Knott's Berry Farm as well as the popular Southern California beaches. Major employers in Newport Beach and nearby areas include Google, Ford Motor Company, Allergan, Quicksilver, Broadcom, Boeing, Hoag Memorial Hospital and Pacific Life Insurance, to name a few.
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