With a population of 340,000, Anaheim is the most populous city in Orange County and the 10th most populous city in the State of California. Anaheim is the second largest city in Orange County in terms of land area at about 50 Square Miles and is home to the Disneyland Resort, the Anaheim Convention Center and two major sports teams the Anaheim Ducks of the NHL and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Major League Baseball team.
Anaheim was founded by fifty German families in 1857 and incorporated as the second city of the then Los Angeles County in 1876. From its early years, Anaheim was mainly an agricultural city with Orange groves and nut trees as the primary crops. That all changed with the construction and opening of Disneyland in a955. I recall my first visit to Disneyland in 1968 when I was a resident physician at the Long Beach Veterans Administration Hospital. In addition to Disneyland Anaheim became an industrial center producing electronics, aircraft parts, and canned fruit.
During the early half of the 20th century, before Disneyland opened, Anaheim was a massive rural community dominated by orange groves and the landowners who farmed them. Also, during this time, Rudolph Boysen, Anaheim’s first Park Superintendent created a hybrid berry which Walter Knott later named the Boysenberry. Although Knott’s Berry Farm, another huge theme park is technically in the City of Buena Park, it is right on the border with Anaheim and I have taken the liberty of including it with Anaheim. Boysenberry Jam and other jams and jellies under the Knott label and homemade chicken dinners plus a few low key rides were the basis of Knotts Berry Farm when I first visited it with my family including my grandmother and my mother, who both made their very first airplane trips in 1968 to visit me and my young family.
Disneyland is pretty well known to everyone not only in the USA but around the world. Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck and the many other Disney characters have an identity that dwarfs that of many humans. Disneyland is one of the world’s most visited tourist attractions with over 650 million visitors since it opened. The location was formerly home to 160 acres of orange and walnut trees, some of which still remain on the property. The Anaheim Resort area includes the Disneyland Resort, the Anaheim Convention Center, the Honda Center home to the Anaheim Ducks hockey team and Angel Stadium, home to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, MLB team. The Ducks were the 2007 Stanley Cup Champions and the Angels were 2002 World Series Champions.
At least 29 major businesses including AT & T, Hewlett Packard, the Kaiser Foundation, Panasonic, Raytheon, and Toyota Financial Services are based in Anaheim. The Disneyland Resort contributes about $4.7 million annually to the Southern California and Anaheim economy and produces $250 million in taxes every year! I
If you are thinking of a visit to Orange Couty, I suggest that you consider visiting Anaheim and taking in one or more of it’s great entertainment venues such as Disneyland, Knotts Berry Farm or perhaps a hockey game with the Ducks at the Honda Center or a major league baseball game at Angel Staduim. Although it is the economic juggernaurt of Orange County, there is a lot of fun to be had in Anaheim as well. Give it a try! I think you will enjoy your visit.