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Known as the “Jewel of the Missions,” Mission San Juan Capistrano is a historic landmark and museum that features permanent exhibits with original artifacts as well as traveling and temporary exhibits. Orange County’s only Mission, the site is home to Serra Chapel, The Ruins of the Great Stone Church and the original padres’ quarters of the South Wing and promotes faith, education, preservation and cultural event programming. Founded on November 1, 1776, by Saint Junípero Serra as the seventh of twenty-one California missions established by Spain, Mission San Juan Capistrano is owned by the Diocese of Orange and receives no church or state funding. The Mission Preservation Foundation, comprised of business and community leaders, is its fundraising entity committed to ensuring education, preservation and its long-term historic and religious significance. Learn more.

Conveniently located halfway between Los Angeles and San Diego, close to the freeway and airport and walking distance from the train depot.

Press Releases

April 26, 2023
Mission San Juan’s 2023 Romance of the Mission Gala to Honor Farmers & Merchants Bank and the Walker Family

San Juan Capistrano, Calif. (April 26, 2023) – The coveted Romance of the Mission benefit gala returns to historic Mission San Juan Capistrano on Friday, September 22, 2023. The Mission Preservation Foundation Board of Directors proudly announces Farmers & Merchants Bank and the Walker family as this year’s honorees and the female vocalist trio Lyric as featured concert artists. 

Farmers & Merchant Bank Chairman/CEO Daniel K. Walker says, “Giving back to organizations that provide such a powerful service to the community is a privilege. We value the Mission’s preservation and stewardship of its historical site as well as the events that bring our neighbors together and create a strong sense of community.”

The gala theme, “If These Walls Could Talk” underscores the many chapters of change and challenges for the Mission and ties to the significant support that Farmers & Merchants Bank made to ensure the ongoing operations of the Mission during the pandemic. Since 2007, the institution has also supported Mission events including the Mariachi Festival, Return of the Swallows celebration, Music Under the Stars Summer Concert Series, Capistrano Lights to name a few.

“With the pandemic causing the Mission’s closure, we know we would not be in the fully operable and accessible situation that we are today without Farmers & Merchants Bank and the Walker Family’s assistance in obtaining much needed PPP funding. We are so proud to work with them and recognize their extensive support at this year’s gala,” said Mission Preservation Board Chair George O’Connell.

The annual live concert in the Ruins of the Great Stone Church will feature Lyric, the trio of harmonizing female vocalists to perform from their diverse song book spanning decades of music throughout the 20th century.

Inn at the Mission San Juan Capistrano will return as the event’s hospitality and catering provider with Executive Chef Adrián Hernández at the helm. Other returning partners include George and Eden O’Connell, O’Connell Family Foundation, Tony and Melinda Moiso, Rancho Mission Viejo Company, Roger’s Gardens, Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort, Farmers & Merchants Bank, Rancho Capistrano Winery, Brand Enhance Parking & Hospitality, BBJ La Tavola Specialty Linen, Signature Party Rentals along with a new supporter, BCT Entertainment.

Tickets and underwriting start at $1000. For underwriting opportunities, contact Mechelle Lawrence Adams at (949) 234-1311, email and

Darlynn Kitcher at (949) 234-1308, email to be added to the wait list for individual tickets.

The Gala’s 2023 opportunity drawing tickets are $100 and include packages at Inn at the Mission San Juan Capistrano and Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort to date. For advance tickets, contact Mariela Martinez at (949) 234-1312,  For general gala information, visit

Gala net proceeds will fund student education and field trips to the Mission’s soon to be released, “If These Walls Could Talk: Remembering the Builders,” audio tour that educates listeners about the history and sacrifices endured with the Mission’s founding as well as important preservation projects.


February 21, 2023
Mission San Juan Capistrano Announces St. Joseph’s Day and Return of the Swallows Celebration on March 19

February 1, 2023
Mission San Juan to Offer Exclusive VIP Guided Tours

December 12, 2022
Mission San Juan Welcomes Trevor Baird and Seth Teigen as Newest Mission Preservation Foundation Board Members

November 11, 2022
Mission San Juan Capistrano’s Annual Capistrano Lights Opens December 3 with New Holiday Traditions

September 21, 2022
Mission Preservation Foundation’s Stunning Benefit Gala Raises $772K While Celebrating Honorees Joan and Bill Cvengros

June 22, 2022
Outside SCR Returns to Mission San Juan Capistrano with South Coast Repertory’s Production of Million Dollar Quartet July 30-Aug. 21

March 17, 2022
Mission San Juan Capistrano Welcomes Darren O. Aitken to the Mission Preservation Foundation Board

February 2, 2022
Mission San Juan Capistrano Return of the Swallows Celebration

October 25, 2021
Mission San Juan Capistrano Announces ‘Capistrano Lights Returns’ Holiday Festivities

September 20, 2021
Mission Celebrates its Open Doors at Benefit Gala Honoring Connie and Dr. Peter Spenuzza

August 6, 2021
‘Finding Inspiration: The Gardens at Mission San Juan Capistrano’ Honors the Late Madeline Martin Swinden and Inspires New Audio Tour

April 20, 2021
Mission San Juan Capistrano to Host Homefront America’s ‘Field of Honor®’ Flag Display During Memorial Day Weekend

March 9, 2021
Celebrate St. Joseph Day and Return of the Swallows with Mission San Juan Capistrano Virtually or In-Person

January 28, 2021
Historic California Landmark Mission San Juan Capistrano and Gardens Announces Reopening

Media Contact

For media inquiries, including a press kit, press photos or media trip requests, please contact: 
Kristin Bolda, Marketing Brand Director
(949) 234-1313
For general photography bookings, please book here.

If you are an influencer and are interested in attending an influencer event, please contact:
Kristin Bolda, Marketing Brand Director
(949) 234-1313

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Museum Hours

Tuesday - Sunday, 9AM - 5PM

Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Closed for Annual Gala on September 22, 2023.
Closed early Christmas Eve and Good Friday.
Hours subject to change


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26801 Old Mission Road
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
(949) 234-1300

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