August 20, 2023
CHOC Walk History
TIMELINE: 31 Years of Walking for Kids
November 10, 1990, was an important day for CHOC. On this milestone date, patients and staff moved through tunnels and halls, beginning the process of transitioning from their original building (constructed in 1964 through the efforts of local civic leaders and philanthropists, including Walt Disney) to a new patient care tower. While this was happening, nearly 1,000 community members walked past the new hospital for the inaugural CHOC/Disneyland® Community Walk.
The first CHOC Walk stretched over five miles, starting at Main Place Mall in Santa Ana, past CHOC and through neighborhoods to the Disneyland® Park parking lot. By its third year, the event had outgrown its route and moved to South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa for the next nine years.
In 2002, the fundraising event returned to “The Happiest Place on Earth” and was transformed into “CHOC Walk in the Park,” presented by Disneyland® Resort. In this all-new incarnation walkers had the unique opportunity to stroll a 5K route through Disneyland® Park, Disney California Adventure® Park and the Downtown Disney® District, experiencing early morning magic before each area opened to the public.
It was the first event of its kind to take place at Disneyland® Resort and this new venue proved a huge success for CHOC. The inaugural walk was the biggest fundraising milestone in the event's history at the time, raising more than $550,000 for CHOC.
“CHOC Walk in the Park,” presented by Disneyland® Resort, continued to enjoy annual growth and in 2004, it became CHOC’s first-ever million-dollar event. Today the popular fundraising effort remains a favorite destination event among Southern California residents (and beyond).
Over its 31-year history, the event has raised more than $42 million for Orange County’s only pediatric health system. The event also has the distinction of being the largest and most unique pediatric fundraiser in the nation.
2023 event and registration information is available now at www.chocwalk.org, and real-time event information can also be found on our Facebook and Instagram.
About CHOC: CHOC, a pediatric health system based in Orange County, California, is committed to being a leading destination for children’s health by providing exceptional and innovative care. CHOC's growing community includes two state-of-the-art hospitals in Orange and Mission Viejo and a regional network of primary and specialty care clinics serving children and families in four counties. CHOC offers multiple clinical programs of excellence providing the highest levels of care for the most serious pediatric illnesses and injuries, physical and mental. CHOC's research and innovation institutes are focused on translating real patient needs into real-world treatments so every child can live the heathiest and happiest life possible.