Why We Love O.C. | Newport Beach’s Star Athletes and Costa Mesa’s Surf and Skate Titans

Plus a note about Corona Del Mar and the county’s other ”Census Designated Cities”

We turned to community leaders, residents, statistics, history, and even a few former presidents to tell you something incredible about every one of the 34 cities we call home.

Newport Beach

Some of the most accomplished athletes in the world live in Newport Beach or went to Newport Harbor High. Is it something in the water?

Illustration by Tram Nguyen


➜ Aaron Peirsol // swimming

Newport Harbor High School grad

7-time Olympic medalist (5 golds), holds world record in 200-meter backstroke

➜ April Ross // beach volleyball

Newport Harbor High School grad

2-time Olympic medalist (silver, bronze), gold medalist in World Championships

➜ Bill Barnett // water polo

Coached at Newport Harbor High School

Led 15 teams to CIF titles (10 boys, five girls) in his 49 years at the school

➜ Dennis Rodman // basketball

Newport Beach resident

5-time NBA champion, rebounds per game leader for 7 years, Hall of Famer

➜ George Yardley // basketball

Newport Harbor High School grad

Hall of Famer, first NBA player to score 2,000 points in a season

➜ Kobe Bryant // basketball

Newport Beach resident

5-time NBA champion, 4-time All-Star MVP (tied for most in history), second youngest to reach 30,000 points, MVP

➜ Misty May-Treanor // beach volleyball

Newport Harbor High School grad

3-time Olympic gold medalist, half of the best women’s beach volleyball team ever, ’95 high school player of the year

➜ Roy Emerson // tennis

Newport Beach resident

Australian-born 12-time Grand Slam singles winner

➜ Scott Niedermayer // hockey

Newport Beach resident

4-time Stanley Cup champion, Conn Smythe winner, Norris Trophy winner, Hall of Famer, named one of the 100 greatest players in NHL history

Costa Mesa

Many titans of the surf and skate
industry call this city home.

➜ Hurley 
Costa Mesa since 1979

➜ RVCA Costa Mesa since 2001

➜ Vans Costa Mesa since 1966

➜ Volcom Costa Mesa since 1999

➜ Almond Costa Mesa since 2008

➜ Rip Curl Costa Mesa since 2005

Photo by Mariah Tauger

What About Corona del Mar?

Or Coto de Caza? For this package, we focused specifically on cities in Orange County. Corona del Mar is part of the city of Newport Beach. We have another group of areas defined as Census Designated Places. The six in O.C. are Coto de Caza, Ladera Ranch, Las Flores, Midway City, North Tustin, and Rossmoor; North Tustin is the largest, at nearly 6.7 square miles, and Midway City is the smallest, at .63 square miles. Newport Coast was in this category until 2001, when it was annexed by Newport Beach. Places such as Trabuco Canyon, Silverado, and Orange Park Acres are unincorporated communities. No matter the official designation, we’re proud to call the whole county home.

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