Laguna Beach is far more than a seaside resort municipality; it is also a community of artists. Situated in the southern section of Orange County, Laguna Beach is home to some 23,000 permanent residents and is located about 20 miles away from the large city and county seat of Santa Ana.
In keeping with its artistic ethos, Laguna Beach features one of the most unusual annual events in California. Tourists who stay in vacation rentals in Laguna Beach during the summer can attend the Pageant of the Masters. Unlike other arts and crafts fairs, this one focuses on life-as-art. Central features of the event include people posing in sets that are designed to look like some of the most famous artworks in the world. Other summer festivals include the Festival of Arts, the Art-A-Fair, and the Sawdust Art Festival, which began as far back as the mind-1960s. These events make Laguna Beach one of the most 'arty' cities along the Pacific Coastline.
Area residents and visitors also enjoy the Laguna Art Museum, which takes as its theme the collection, display, and interpretation of art produced in California.
Laguna Beach has been the focus of a reality TV show, Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, which played on MTV during the first decade of the new millennium. The plot of the show follows the exploits of local youth on the cusp of adulthood. Many Americans are familiar with Laguna Beach through this show, which eventually rose to become the second most popular show on MTV.