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SUMMER 2015

212

Where To?

FLASH PARKER

A fun and colorful signpost in Turks and Caicos points to destinations around the world. What we want to know is, why would anyone leave this island paradise?

3


SUMMER 2015

50

REGIONS n NORTHEAST 82 84 90 94

Todd Martin’s Newport, R.I. Farms with Forks Philly Pedal Power Summer in New York City

n SOUTHEAST 100 Robin Roberts’ Pass Christian, Miss.

102 Viva, Nash Vegas! 110 Meet the Barbecue Queen

118 Wild West Virginia 124 Arty Paducah, Ky.

n MIDWEST 132 Michael Symon’s Cleveland

134 Chicago Architectural Tour

140 Little Towns on the Prairie 146 Over-the-Rhine Renewal

FEATURES 8

BEST TIME TO VISIT CITIES

10

PLANE AMENITIES

14

ROLLERCOASTER ROUNDUP

make relaxing easy

152 Cia Cherryholmes’ Pagosa Springs, Colo.

154 On the Trail of the 10th Mountain Division

162 Austin’s Breakfast Taco Obsession

170 Discover Las Cruces, N.M.

50 See the iconic sights of America by car

n PACIFIC

7 SUMMER DRIVES

16

GREEN TRAVEL

60 Book a room where skylines are the limit

176 Jason Mraz’s San Diego 178 See Seattle by Sidecar 184 Hiking a Volcano Blast

18

10BEST.COM MUSIC FESTIVALS

70 From surfing to sand sledding, the

190 The Spirits of San Diego 196 Las Vegas Pool Party

20

TRIPOLOGY.COM TRAVEL STATS

22

SOUNDS OF SILENCE

24

TREEHOUSE HOTELS

26

PICKING PILGRIMAGES

28

FROZEN TREATS

30

DO-GOOD BREWS

32

FILM FESTIVALS

36

DUTY-FREE SHOPPING

ROOMS WITH A VIEW

GREAT LAKES ADVENTURES

Zone

Midwestern shoreline offers it all

DESTINATIONS

28

200 n MEXICO Baja Wineries

206 nCANADA Scenic Charlevoix

212 n CARIBBEAN Turks and Caicos

SPECIAL 218 n CRUISES Wellness on the High Seas

220 n SPORTS TRAVEL A Bucket List for Fans

4 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM; LOOPY DOOPY ROOFTOP BAR

UP FRONT

RESORTS 40 RURAL Luxury hotels with plush spas

n WEST


FEATURED CONTRIBUTORS PREMIUM PUBLICATION DIRECTOR Jeanette Barrett-Stokes jbstokes@usatoday.com CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jerald Council jcouncil@usatoday.com MANAGING EDITOR Michelle Washington mjwashington@usatoday.com CREATIVE MEDIA MANAGER Christine Neff cneff@usatoday.com

▶ KAREN ASP

▶ ANNETTE THOMPSON

Although an oatmeal girl at heart, this breakfast-lover was willing to give breakfast tacos a try when she visited Austin (page 162). Her favorite? TacoDeli’s Freakin’ Vegan, which she describes as “so freakin’ good” she could eat it every day. Karen writes about fitness, health, nutrition, pets and travel and contributes to Woman’s Day and other publications, including Shape, SELF, Family Circle, Real Simple, Reader’s Digest and Good Housekeeping.

This longtime Birmingham, Ala., resident fell in love with the open road as a kid, when her family took cross-country trips on Route 66 in a ’57 Chevy wagon. Today as a fulltime travel and food writer (she also serves as president of the Society of American Travel Writers), she’s still drawn to kitschy teepee motels and funky roadside stops. Join her on a road trip in this issue (page 50) and sample some of her favorite Southern barbecue (page 110).

EDITORS Nikki Dobrin Chris Garsson Elizabeth Neus Lori Santos Amanda Shifflett DESIGNERS Erin Aulov Marlece Lusk Tricia Reinhold Gina Toole Saunders Lisa M. Zilka INTERNS Alexa Rogers Hannah Van Sickle CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Karen Asp, Diane Bair, Heather Benit, Kit Bernardi, Lisa Davis, Ashley Day, Robert DiGiacomo, Jim Dillon, Nancy Dunham, Allison Entrekin, Jennifer Bradley Franklin, Adrienne Jordan, Alexis Korman, Tina Lassen, Lisa Meyers McClintick, Flash Parker, Sarah Sekula, Annette Thompson, Kristi Valentini, Alistair Wearmouth, Pamela Wright, Andria Yu, Stacey Zable CONTRIBUTING ILLUSTRATORS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS H. Darr Beiser, Dadu Shin

ADVERTISING

VP, ADVERTISING Patrick Burke | (703) 854-5914 pburke@usatoday.com ACCOUNT DIRECTOR Justine Goodwin | (703) 854-5444 jgoodwin@usatoday.com

COURTESY OF THE CONTRIBUTORS

FINANCE

▶ FLASH PARKER

▶ LISA DAVIS

This Canadian journalist is now based in Wyoming, which means he’s equally adept at apologizing unnecessarily (eh?) and handling moose poop. Always on the go, camera in one hand, pen in the other, he takes readers to Nashville (page 102), San Diego (page 190) and Turks and Caicos (page 212) in this issue. Follow his antics on Twitter, @FlashParker, and at flashparker.com

The travel journalist regularly contributes to GoEscape, Forbes Travel Guide, Chicago Tribune and more. Through her work, she has discovered many unexpected destinations, including an artist enclave in Kentucky (page 124). She shares her Chicago home with Boo and Blanca, the canine stars of her upcoming children’s book. Follow along on Twitter and Instagram @lisadavismedia.

BILLING COORDINATOR Julie Marco This is a product of

Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved herein, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or reproduced in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the written consent of USA TODAY. The editors and publisher are not responsible for any unsolicited materials.

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UP FRONT | GO ESCAPE

I N T H E N O W, I N T H E K N O W

THINKSTOCK

GET INSPIRED

Few things are more thrilling than the anticipation that leads up to a big trip or the wonder you experience at the sights and sounds, smells and tastes of a new destination. For some, the act of planning a getaway can be as fun and informative as the adventure itself — which is where we come in. Whether you travel regularly or have a bucket list of destinations you dream about visiting, relax, enjoy and let us inspire your next big escape.

— Christine Neff

7


UP FRONT | ADVICE

Travel Calendar

Plan trips to all the top cities at all the right times BY ALEXA ROGERS

January

February

March

ORLANDO

WASHINGTON

Fly south for the winter and visit the happiest city in Florida. Transportation prices remain on the higher side, but hotels around the theme parks offer great deals. Crowds mostly disperse in the winter, though expect a surge during spring break (March and early April). Temperatures stay in the mid-70s during the day, perfect for enjoying Disney.

The nation’s capital really shines in the spring, when warmer temperatures usher in a slew of fun outdoor activities. Hotel prices drop early in the season, but expect a spike in rates (and crowds) during the National Cherry Blossom Festival in April. Temperatures tend to hover in the upper 60s and low 70s, but be sure to include some stops at the Smithsonian Institution museums in case of rain.

April

May

June

NEW YORK CITY

CHICAGO See the sights after summer crowds clear out. Fewer tourists in fall result in cheaper room rates, especially downtown near the Loop. Daytime temps in the 70s are perfect for outdoor events such as the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, Sept. 26-27, or a stroll along the Magnificent Mile.

8 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

LOS ANGELES

July

October

August

November

September

December

Avoid LA during the hot and tourist-heavy summer months and plan your visit for the fall. Travel prices hit a low then, and hotels in Beverly Hills and near the city center often offer discounts. Beachside hotel prices also take a dip around this time, and it’s still warm enough to enjoy the ocean.

SAN FRANCISCO Early fall brings warm, sunny days and higher temps than even during the summer in the City by the Bay. Travel and hotel rates are discounted after the summer rush, so it’s the perfect time to get a good deal. Chocolatelovers are in for a real treat at the Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival Sept. 12-13.

THINKSTOCK

The Big Apple thrives in the spring. Travel prices are slightly lower and hotels have discounted rates. (Tourist-dense areas such as Times Square will always be more expensive, so opt for a hotel in Chelsea or Hell’s Kitchen.) You can expect spring showers so plan indoor events for rainy days.


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UP FRONT | ADVICE

IN-SEAT ENTERTAINMENT Delta airline’s “Delta Studio” entertainment service now offers in-flight streaming right to your smartphone, laptop or tablet. Use one of Delta’s mobile app players to choose from a number of new TV shows and movies, which are stored onboard for optimal streaming quality. Check the airline’s pre-approved list of streaming devices to make sure you have the right one.

Perks Forget you’re even flying with new airline amenities that can really improve your trip BY ALEXA ROGERS

POWER OUTLETS Electronic devices are great to have in the air — until they lose power mid-flight. To solve this, airlines are putting power outlets at every seat so you can catch up on your shows, listen to your playlist — and ignore the person snoring next to you. MOBILE AIRLINE APPS Plan, book, even change your flight from your phone or tablet with your airline’s mobile app. Most carriers have upgraded theirs in the past year, and offer mobile boarding passes that can be accessed through the app for a seamless and paperfree check-in. You can also stay updated on flight times by setting up notifications.

10 GO GO ESCAPE ESCAPE || SUMMER SUMMER 2015 2015 10

DINING OPTIONS Pretzels and peanuts are still the flight staple, but many airlines are starting to elevate their options with more varieties of name-brand drinks and snacks. Check the flight menu online before stocking up at the airport.

TREAT A SEAT MATE

Virgin America encourages interaction between passengers with their seat-to-seat delivery service. Hosted by the airline’s Red in-flight entertainment system, a digital seat map allows you to send a drink or snack directly to another passenger’s seat. Want to strike up a conversation? Use the chat function to send an instant message. The system also offers chat rooms for talking with co-workers or family members if you are separated on the plane. THINKSTOCK

Little

IN-FLIGHT WI-FI Spending a little time in the clouds doesn’t mean you have to go off the grid. Many major airlines now offer Wi-Fi options for passengers who need to stay connected, and are heading that way for in-seat entertainment as well. It isn’t available on every flight, and usually comes at a price, so be sure to check what’s available before you log on. Also be aware that airlines are just getting into the streaming video business and the quality of service may not yet be what you’re used to on the ground.


11


12 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015


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13


UP FRONT | ATTRACTIONS

Need to Speed? Introducing eight new roller coasters that will take your breath away BY ALLISON ENTREKIN

ROUGAROU According to French folklore, a rougarou is a creature similar to a werewolf, and this floorless roller coaster earns the name. The Cedar Point roller coaster terrifies its riders with scream-inducing inversions. 1 Cedar Point Dr., Sandusky, Ohio; 419-627-2350; cedarpoint.com

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CANNIBAL As its ominous name suggests, this ride at Lagoon Park will eat you alive with its 208-foot near-free fall into an underground tunnel. 375 N. Lagoon Dr., Farmington, Utah; 801-451-8000; lagoonpark.com

THUNDERBIRD It begins with a 0-to-60 mph launch, continues with a 14-story loop and doesn’t stop before adding a crazy barrel roll. “Near-miss” elements will have even the hardiest rider screaming on this Holiday World coaster. 452 E. Christmas Blvd., Santa Claus, Ind.; 812-937-4401; holidayworld.com

FURY 325 Fasten your seatbelts! You’ll hit speeds of 95 mph, as you whiz up hills and shoot around curves on this massive 325-foot giga coaster at Carowinds. 300 Carowinds Blvd., Fort Mill, S.C.; 704-5882600; carowinds.com

TWISTED COLOSSUS The famed Colossus roller coaster at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom gets a makeover, complete with a hybrid steel-and-wood track, new thrills and of course, a new name. 26101 Magic Mountain Parkway, Valencia, Calif.; 661-255-4100; sixflags.com/ magicmountain

IMPULSE Take a 90-degree free-fall drop, add an upside-down loop and a cobra roll, and you’ll see why roller-coaster lovers can’t stop talking about this ride at Knoebels. 391 Knoebels Blvd., Elysburg, Pa.; 800-487-4386; knoebels. com

WICKED CYCLONE After soaring 10 stories on this hybrid coaster at Six Flags New England, riders will experience weightlessness as they plummet toward the bottom and then take on two zero-gravity rolls that are wicked indeed. Route 159, 1623 Main St., Agawam, Mass.; 413-786-9300; sixflags.com/ newengland

THINKSTOCK

BATMAN: THE RIDE You’ll need superhero strength to stomach this new ride at Six Flags Fiesta Texas. The 12-story lift, six head-over-heels spins and two beyond-vertical free falls will thrill. 17000 IH-10 West, San Antonio; 210-697-5050; sixflags.com/fiestatexas


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15


UP FRONT | ATTRACTIONS

Changing Scenery Plan to take in these sights before they’re gone for good BY MATT VILLANO

GABRIEL MORROW/NATIONAL PARK SERVICE

FROM ALASKA TO MIAMI, the phenomenon of climate change — the catch-all phrase that describes subtle but significant changes to Earth’s atmosphere — is wreaking havoc on some of the most beautiful destinations in the country. Perhaps the most concerning news: There has been no recent evidence that the trend will slow or stop any time soon.

16 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015


1958

MELTING GLACIERS

2011

TIPS TO GREEN YOUR TRAVEL There’s no question that climate change and global warming are changing many of the places we love to visit. Here are some steps to minimize your contribution to the trend.

FRTOM TOP: M.T. MILLETT; M.J. BEEDLE; BETHPURCELLMOSAICS.COM; HENRY HOLT & COMPANY

Don’t fly. Elizabeth Kolbert, author of The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, says the travel ritual most harmful to the environment is airplane travel. Her advice? Minimize flights as much as possible. “Airplane travel is a big CO2 producer,” she says. “The best thing people can do in terms of reducing the impact of travel is to stay closer to home.”

Bask in privacy. Bret Love, co-founder of Green Travel Media, a consulting firm, says leaving the “Do Not Disturb” sign on your hotel door saves valuable resources. “If the housekeeping staff isn’t coming in every day, they don’t waste water, don’t waste detergent and electricity washing linens and towels every day and don’t waste chemicals and electricity vacuuming and cleaning.” Hail wetlands. Especially as sea levels rise, wetlands are important resources to absorb some of the extra water. Louis Blumberg, director of the California Climate Change Program at The Nature Conservancy, says understanding and appreciating this resource is critical. “More than ever, we need to be mindful of our lifestyles and respect this type of land,” he says.

In Alaska, where cruise ship passengers flock by the hundreds of thousands every year for a glimpse of nature at its best, most glaciers still exist, but they’re receding more rapidly than ever before. The Mendenhall Glacier near Juneau, left, is a prime example. When the on-site visitor center was built in 1962, it was mere feet from the face of the glacier. Today, more than 50 years later, the glacier sits a mile away, on the other side of a lake. The spectacular Glacier National Park in Montana is another example of how climate change is transforming tourist spots. Here, the park’s iconic glaciers have been melting consistently for the last decade. Park rangers estimate that by 2030, the glaciers will be gone altogether.

SHRINKING LAKES

RISING SEAS

All Andrew Glasgow wanted to do was share the wonder of California’s Mount Shasta and Shasta Lake with his wife and two young sons. He had visited the mountain before, many times. He remembered the awe-inspiring grandeur of the snow-covered triangle reflected in the turquoise waters of the lake below. His family simply had to see it. So, for Thanksgiving last year, he booked a trip. But when they arrived, the scene was totally wrong. There was virtually no snow on the mountain itself. And the lake — if you wanted to call it that — was nothing more than a glorified puddle. “It was startling, to say the least,” says Glasgow, a marketing executive from Oakland. Warming temperatures and drought conditions in California likely were two of the factors contributing to what the Glasgows spotted that day. Other lakes have been affected by climate change as well. Rising temperatures in Lake Tahoe are suspected to have caused a drop in the number of bottom-feeding creatures in the lake — the very same creatures that eat algae and therefore give the lake its world-renowned clarity.

Current predictions from the National Climate Assessment suggest ocean levels could rise by 2 feet in the next 30 to 40 years, meaning shorelines would move inland approximately 1,000 feet to 4,000 feet. Put differently, by 2050, parts of low-lying coastal regions, such as Miami, New Orleans and Mobile, Ala., could be underwater, and some scientists fear these predictions may actually be optimistic, at best. Some see the dire predictions as a way to educate travelers. Louisiana Lost Land Environmental Tours, a kayak operator in New Orleans, is one of them, offering guided trips behind flood walls and levies. “We’re losing the equivalent of one football field worth of land every 40 minutes here,” says co-owner Marie Gould. “Sometimes the best way to understand the impact of all of this is to get out and see it for yourself.”

17


UP FRONT | READERS’ CHOICE

Festival Frenzy Every week, USA TODAY Travel’s 10Best.com launches a new poll about the places most worthy of your leisure time. The votes have been tallied on the best music festivals in the U.S. Check out the results.

1

RIOT FEST

CAST YOUR VOTE! Visit 10Best.com/ awards/travel to vote on your favorite destinations.

2

ELECTRIC FOREST FESTIVAL

Rothbury, Mich. Staged each June in this small town near Lake Michigan, Electric Forest Festival features four days of electronic and jam bands, surreal audiovisual effects and interactive art installations in a dreamy forest setting. Festival-goers have access to a lake, water park and hiking trails during this mind-bending weekend.

3

NEW ORLEANS JAZZ AND HERITAGE FESTIVAL

New Orleans This annual spring festival, presented by Shell, celebrates the music and culture of Louisiana through jazz and gospel music, a parade, traditional food (think crawfish etouffeé and boudin) and interactive cultural exhibitions. Musical highlights of past installments include B.B. King, Al Green and Aretha Franklin.

4

SHAKY KNEES MUSIC FESTIVAL

Atlanta While relatively new to the scene, Atlanta’s Shaky Knees festival already has a loyal following of indie rock fans who flock to Midtown each May. This newer festival proves that you don’t need big sponsorships or a huge budget to put on a rockin’ show.

18 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

7

BONNAROO

Manchester, Tenn. Four days, 10 stages, more than 150 performers and some 85,000 attendees — this is Bonnaroo, an annual June festival known for its musical eclecticism. While the festival’s roots were in jam bands and folk, today one might see Jay-Z, Dave Matthews, Willie Nelson, The Deadmau5 or Lionel Richie on the same lineup.

8

The Electric Forest Festival celebrates the surreal through music, art and lighting.

5

FIREFLY

Dover, Del. During this June event, the Woodlands of Dover International Speedway transforms into an epicenter of musical entertainment, complete with an on-site Dogfish Head craft beer bar, outdoor bazaar, hammock hangout, arcade and a coffee house where more intimate performances are held.

6

NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL

Newport, R.I. This pioneering festival has been around since 1959, shining the spotlight on folk, country, blues and bluegrass. This summer festival at Fort Adams State Park has witnessed many memorable musical moments, like Bob Dylan’s first plugged-in set in 1965, and Johnny Cash introducing Kris Kristofferson 1969.

HARDLY STRICTLY BLUEGRASS

San Francisco Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, held over three days each October in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, features a lineup of non-commercial music extending well beyond the festival’s bluegrass roots. Even better, it’s free — no tickets required!

9

WAKARUSA MUSIC FESTIVAL

Ozark, Ark. Each summer, concert-goers head to Mulberry Mountain for the four-day Wakarusa Music Festival. Besides the quirky and eclectic lineup of some 150 performers, this camping festival also boasts costume contests, daily yoga sessions, music workshops and interactive art installations.

10

SASQUATCH!

Quincy, Wash. Sasquatch! wins the prize for most scenic setting. Staged at the stunning outdoor Gorge Ampitheatre near the Columbia River, this four-day festival highlights indie rock acts, with bands like Mumford & Sons and Hozier and singer-songwriters Ryan Adams and Lana Del Rey.

ELECTRIC FOREST

Chicago, Denver and Toronto This annual multicity music festival puts on unforgettable punk and rock shows alongside carnival rides and Lucha Libre. Past acts include Weezer, The Flaming Lips, Primus and Jane’s Addiction. They promise never to book Justin Bieber.


. . . s e g a c l e e t s in t p e k g n i e b From


UP FRONT | BY THE NUMBERS

How We Travel USA TODAY’s Tripology.com collects data on the way we plan and book vacations. Take a look at findings from 2013 and 2014.

10 MOST POPULAR DESTINATIONS FOR U.S. TRAVELERS Las Vegas 1 Caribbean 2 Cancun 3 Orlando 4 Miami 5 Bahamas 6 New York 7 Disney World 8 Hawaii 9 Punta Cana 10

HOW MUCH DO WE SPEND PER TRIP?

$1,599

per person on average (2014)

7.5%

9%

4% 5.4%

APRIL

MARCH

FEBRUARY

9.6%

12.2%

13.2%

8.9%

$1,865

TOP DEPARTURE MONTHS FOR DESTINATIONS (2014)

per person on average (2014)

JANUARY

10 MOST POPULAR CRUISE DESTINATIONS FOR U.S. TRAVELERS 1 Caribbean 2 Bahamas 3 Alaska 4 Nassau 5 Miami 6 Hawaii 7 Cancun 8 Disney Cruise 9 Cozumel 10 Montego Bay

HOW MUCH DO WE SPEND PER CRUISE?

JULY

AUGUST

JUNE

MAY

WHEN DO WE BOOK TRIPS?

133

7.2%

days before departure on average

SEPTEMBER

7.2%

WHEN DO WE BOOK CRUISES?

5.9%

155

NOVEMBER

9.9%

OCTOBER

days before departure on average

DECEMBER

4% JAN.

4.8% FEB.

9.6%

MARCH

20 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

8.2% APRIL

9.6% MAY

13.6% JUNE

11.8% JULY

10.1% AUG.

7.5% SEPT.

5.8% OCT.

5.8%

NOV.

9.2%

DEC.

TRICIA REINHOLD

TOP DEPARTURE MONTHS FOR CRUISES (2014)


UP FRONT | RESORTS

NATURE HIKE Trek among 25 species of orchids that bloom in the silent oasis of The Ridges Sanctuary on the Door County peninsula of Wisconsin. 8270 WI-57, Baileys Harbor; Wis.; 920-839-2802; ridgessanctuary.org

ON THE WATER Kayak in the still waters of Lake Hope in McArthur, Ohio, and watch the sunrise over this hushed, forested paradise. 27331 OH-278; 740-5964938; lakehopestatepark.org

GO MONK Make like a friar and embrace the solitude at the Hermitage, a oneperson, device-free cabin located on a hilltop in urban Washington, D.C. Owned by the brothers of the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in America, the cabin is meant to be used for prayer and contemplation. 1400 Quincy St., NE; 202-526-6800; myfranciscan.org

PUP AND YOU

Shhhh! Hit mute with these breathtaking backgrounds BY LISA DAVIS | ILLUSTRATION BY DADU SHIN

DINGS, BEEPS, HUMS, clicks and buzzes are, for better or worse, part of daily existence in our tech-obsessed world. But what if you could turn down the ringer and turn up the volume on Earth’s rarest sounds? If you crave silence and love nature, here are some of the quietest places to visit in North America. BEACH SCENE

BIRD LOVE

Most people associate Panama City Beach, Fla., with rowdy spring break crowds. But the town’s 2,900-acre Conservation Park is where stillness abounds. Walk or bike the park’s tree-lined trails and enjoy the sounds of the ecosystem all around you. Griffin Blvd.; Fla.; 850-233-5055; pcbeach.org

Budding ornithologists in search of feathered friends should head to Alabama’s Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge, unspoiled by noise pollution and home to ospreys, hummingbirds and even nesting sea turtles. 12295 State Highway 180, Gulf Shores, Ala.; 251-540-7720; fws.gov/ bonsecour

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Enjoy a quiet getaway at The Resort at Paws Up in Greenough, Mont., with your four-legged better half. Sprawling over 37,000 acres, the ranch has plenty of places for the two of you to explore. 40060 Paws Up Rd.; 406-244-5200; pawsup.com

WILDLIFE SHOW Storm watchers marvel at the lightning displays off the west coast of Vancouver Island in Tofino, British Columbia, then retreat to The Wickaninnish Inn on Chesterman Beach, known for its remote location. Nearby is the 180-mile-long archipelago Haida Gwaii, a top-rated preserve known for its silent, dense cedar forest and labyrinthine coves. 500 Osprey Lane; 1-250-725-3100; wickinn.com

QUEEN OF QUIET Stillness seekers call the One Square Inch of Silence the quietest place in the U.S. Located in the Hoh Rain Forest at Olympic National Park, 170 miles from Seattle, this spot is on the Hoh River Trail, part of the National Park Service. The exact location is marked by a small red-colored stone placed on top of a moss-covered log at 47° 51.959N, 123° 52.221W. Good luck finding it. onesquareinch.org


UP FRONT | RESORTS

▲ Way off the beaten track are the Edisto River Treehouses in Canadys, S.C. To get to the private, wooded retreat, guests must paddle themselves via canoe to a wilderness island at the midpoint of a 23-mile journey down the longest freeflowing blackwater river in the country. From $135 per person; 843-563-5051; canoesc.com

Out on a

Limb What’s both knotty and nice? A sleepover in an actual treehouse.

▲ Made of woven wood, the “human nest” at Treebones Resort in Big Sur, Calif., is a rustic cocoon-for-two. What looks like a giant nest fashioned by an osprey was actually crafted by artist Jayson Fann. Two circular openings reveal can’t-be-beat views of the Pacific Ocean. $150 per night; 877-424-4787; tree bonesresort.com

BY DIANE BAIR AND

▲ At family-friendly Out n’About Treehouse “Treesort” in Cave Junction, Ore., guests use ladders, catwalks and spiral staircases to climb into fanciful hardwood treehouses. Activities include zip lining and horseback rides. From $130 per night; 541-5922208; treehouses.com

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RUSTIC TREEHOUSE RESORTS are very popular right now. “There’s a sense that treehouses are magical, a childhood fantasy come true,” says Katie Stearns of the third-party booking website Glamping Hub (glampinghub. com). Plus, the views are phenomenal. “Tree-t” yourself to a stay at one of these leafy locales.

▲ A backdrop of forest and mountains (including Mt. Rainier) provides a dazzling setting for the Cedar Creek Treehouse in Ashford, Wash., perched 50 feet off the ground inside a 200-year-old western red cedar tree. $650 for two adults/two nights; 360-789-6773; cedar creektreehouse.com

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: ALICE TUBLEY; COURTESY OF THE COMPANIES

PAMELA WRIGHT


1 AIRPORT. 2 VACATIONS. Savannah, Georgia

flySAV.com

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina


UP FRONT | FOOD + DRINK

Pick a Peck Get harvesting with these pluck-your-own morsels BY JENNIFER BRADLEY FRANKLIN

SUMMER’S WARM WEATHER brings diverse agricultural bounty, and what better way to experience it than at a pick-your-own farm? Here are some terrific spots to nab, taste and take home farm-fresh goodies.

STRAWBERRIES CHERRIES

Cherry Hill Orchards, Lancaster, Pa. The aptly named pickyour-own farm — one of the largest in Pennsylvania — offers 25 varieties of tart, sweet cherries starting in mid-June. Be sure to snag a freshbaked cherry pie from the outlet store. Watch out for the stones! 400 Long Lane; 717-872-9311; cherryhillorchards.com

PEACHES Gardner Farm, Locust Grove, Ga. They don’t call it the Peach State for nothing! Five generations of peachy-keen farmers have been growing big red and Elberta peaches on this sprawling orchard, where you’re almost guaranteed to have juice running down your chin before you call it quits. 3192 Highway 42; 770-957-4912; gardnerfarm.wordpress.com

Underwood Family Farms, Somis, Calif. Few fruits are as universally likable as scarlet strawberries. While one serving (about half a punnet) can dish up more than 125 percent of your daily dose of vitamin C, you’ll just be thinking how delicious they are when you’re plucking them straight from the bush, April to August. 5696 E. Los Angeles Ave.; 805386-4660; underwood familyfarms.com

Waldoch Farm Garden Center, Lino Lakes, Minn. Sweet corn is synonymous with balmy temperatures, and farmers in the Gopher State pick it early in the morning while dew still kisses the perfectly ripe, golden ears. Need more than five dozen cobs? Choose your own and get some expert canning tips to boot. 8174 Lake Dr.; 651-780-1207; waldoch farm.com

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CORN


Š2015 Treasure Island Resort & Casino

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UP FRONT | FOOD + DRINK

cool treats

Beat the heat with frozen confections that are anything but vanilla BY ALEXIS KORMAN

NEW YORK

1

LOOPY DOOPY ROOFTOP BAR This is one frozen treat that’s all grown up. The “Boozy Ice Pop” at Loopy Doopy in the Conrad New York Hotel takes the edge off sweltering city summers. Gourmet, booze-infused popsicles come in flavors such as red plum and sour cherry with Cointreau. They’re served bobbing in a glass of prosecco, seven days a week, April through October, weather permitting. 102 North End Ave.; 646-769-4250;

conradnewyork.com/loopydoopy

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LAS VEGAS

BROOKLYN, N.Y.

2

3

HAY ROSIE CRAFT ICE CREAM CO. Modeled after winery tasting rooms, this store gives visitors a peek into the ice cream-making process and a taste of original flavors, such as Sriracha Popcorn. “It’s an ice cream incarnation of my favorite midnight snack,” says founder/owner Stef Ferrari. “The scoop has both the swift kick and cooling effect all in one.” 204

HOLSTEIN’S SHAKES & BUNS Vegans in Vegas will love the creative coconut raspberry shake whipped up at this temple to Americana inside the Cosmopolitan Hotel. The shake incorporates raspberry vodka, a house-made sorbet created from puréed coconut meat and raspberries, and comes garnished with soy whipped cream and a vegan coconut marshmallow.

Sackett St.; 347-987-4983; hayrosie.com

3708 Las Vegas Blvd. S.; 702-6987940; holsteinslv.com

NEW ORLEANS

4

HANSEN’S SNO-BLIZ This no-frills snoball shop boasts house-made flavors with a modernday appeal. The satsuma snoball drizzled with condensed milk has a cult-like status in town — it doesn’t feel like summer in New Orleans without one. For a tastebud adventure, try gingercayenne or “cream of wedding cake.” 4801 Tchoupitoulas St.;

504-891-9788; snobliz.com

SAN DIEGO

5

COURTESY OF THE COMPANIES

PUESTO

Cross a frozen slushie with horchata — the addictive, sweet rice milk beverage commonly found in Mexico — and you’ve got San Diego’s hottest — er, coldest — summer snack. Made fresh daily, the Frozen Horchata is sprinkled with cinnamon, and can even be spiked with rum. 789

West Harbor Dr.; 619-233-8880; eatpuesto.com 29


UP FRONT | FOOD + DRINK

America’s craft beer industry has exploded. In fact, it grew 19 percent last year, according to the Brewers Association. Given all the options, your next brewski can be a tough choice. One way to narrow the field? Go with breweries that are giving back, and make that next beer count.

TWO22 BREW

Raise a glass to beermakers making the world a better place, one pint at a time

Two22’s motto says it all: “Give where you live, drink what you love.” For every $10 of profit, the brewery gives $2.22 back to the Schuster Family Foundation, created by brewery owner Paige Schuster and her mother, Darlene, in memory of Paige’s father, Leo, who died in 2004. The foundation supports Colorado organizations in the fields of education, environmental action and whole-person enrichment.

two22brew.com

BY KAREN ASP

STONE BREWING COMPANY Escondido, Calif. Since its founding in 1996, Stone Brewing has donated more than $3 million to charities and nonprofits around the country. One way it does so is through daily brewery tours. A dollar from every ticket gets donated to a local charity. Stone also hosts an annual beer festival, from which 100 percent of the proceeds go to charity. stone

brewing.com

BREWERY VIVANT Grand Rapids, Mich. This brewery is so serious about sustainability and giving back to the community that it prints its commitment right on its cans. Ten percent of profit goes to charities in the local community, and one day every other month, the brewery donates 25 percent of pub sales to a chosen non-profit.

breweryvivant.com

EX NOVO APPALACHIAN MOUNTAIN BREWERY Boone, N.C. Belly up to the bar at this innovative brewery, where philanthropy is one of its three pillars — community and sustainability are the other two. The Pints for NonProfits program donates a portion of every pint sold in the tasting room to a local charity.

appalachianmoun tainbrewery.com

Portland, Ore. Ever heard of a non-profit brewery? Meet Ex Novo, which donates 100 percent of its net profits to various organizations. Partner groups work toward social justice. They include Friends of the Children, International Justice and MercyCorps, which, with Ex Novo’s support, helps the Syrian refugee population.

exnovobrew.com

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UP FRONT | FILM

Let’s Celebrate Big-screen viewings headline this fall BY STACEY ZABLE

THE MOVIE WORLD shows off its best at film festivals this fall. Combine a visit to these five North American host cities with stellar screenings of films from all genres.

TORONTO TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL SEPT. 10-20 Marking its 40th anniversary this year, the Toronto International Film Festival screens more than 300 films from 60-plus countries and attracts close to 400,000 attendees, including A-listers like Benedict Cumberbatch, left. The festival’s Grolsch People’s Choice Award, based on a popular vote by festival filmgoers, has had great success in predicting later big-award winners. Favorites have included The King’s Speech and 12 Years A Slave, both winners of the Academy Award for Best Picture. tiff.net/

festivals/thefestival

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THINKSTOCK; JEFF VESPA/GETTY IMAGES

1


When you’re here, you’ll always have BIG plans. Whether it’s a shopping excursion, an unforgettable meal or a night on the town — in Dallas, there’s plenty to do. And if the only thing on your mind is taking a moment for yourself, we’ve got just the spot. Find your scene at VisitDallas.com.


UP FRONT | FILM

HOLLYWOOD AFI FEST, HOLLYWOOD, CALIF. NOV. 5-12 The American Film Institute brings together Hollywood’s brightest stars and emerging artists, with the big plus of free tickets for some attendees. Last year’s festival hosted 121 films, including the world premieres of American Sniper and Selma. Conversations center on the craft of acting and cinematography. afi.com/afifest

4 COLORADO

2

AUSTIN AUSTIN FILM FESTIVAL AND SCREENWRITERS CONFERENCE OCT. 29-NOV. 5 Known as “The Writers’ Festival,” this event focuses on the “art of storytelling.” Attendees can choose from 200 film and television premieres, as well as Q&A sessions with cast members and filmmakers such as Clint Eastwood, left. The whole downtown plays host. Screenings are held in multiple venues, and the city’s bars and restaurants come alive for the after-parties.

3

austinfilmfestival.com

FORT LAUDERDALE FORT LAUDERDALE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL • NOV. 6-22 One of the top cultural events in this south Florida city, the film festival marks its 29th year this November. It touts itself as “A Vacation from Ordinary Film,” offering the best in features, documentaries and shorts from around the world — and plenty of sun and celebration. Watch for stars like George Hamilton and Alana Stewart, above. fliff.com j

5

FROM TOP: CHRIS LEISING ; FORT LAUDERDALE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL; VIVIEN BEST; THINKSTOCK

CRESTED BUTTE FILM FESTIVAL • SEPT. 24-27 Cinema lovers from around the world come to this scenic town in the Colorado Rocky Mountains every September, the perfect time to marvel at the aspen forests in full fall colors. Some 90 films are shown over the four-day fest, with venues and events a mere “townie bike” ride away from each other. cbfilmfest.org


Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, ZooMiami, ami Pérez Pére érezz A Art rrtt Muse Museum um M Miami, Miami Seaquarium, South Beach, Deering Estate at Cutler, Museum of Science, History Miami Museum, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Bayside Marketplace, Miami Children’s Museum, Jungle Island, Fruit and Spice Park and www.miamidade.gov and click on Visitors.


UP FRONT | SHOPPING

Duty-Free Details Get the scoop on what the term means and how to save on your travels

Shopping while traveling abroad can often be a hassle. Duty-free shopping makes it easier by offering tax-free advantages and savings on large purchases. Here are some pointers to make your next trip kinder to your wallet.

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THINKSTOCK

BY ADRIENNE JORDAN


UP FRONT | SHOPPING

SAVE ON THESE ITEMS Matt Granite, the YouTube deal guy, recommends these duty-free products:

1

Cigarettes, cigars, alcohol. “If you’re looking for a celebratory cigar or ... some type of alcohol line that is national or tied to a specific country, huge duty-free savings.”

A “duty” refers to a tax or fee placed on goods by government entities. Merchants who import goods and sell them to consumers leaving the country are not charged a duty on these products, so they are able to pass the savings on to customers. But be sure to keep the exchange rate in mind.

WHERE CAN I SHOP/BUY DUTY-FREE? Travelers can find duty-free products at international airports, cruise ships, ports and onboard international flights.

HOW CAN I SHOP DUTY-FREE IN THE UNITED STATES? To be eligible for duty-free shopping, you must be leaving the United States for more than 48 hours and take the items with you into another country.

WHAT ITEMS SHOULD I BUY? “Duty-free and airport purchases are usually more appealing for liquor and tobacco because of the heavy taxes imposed on these items, especially in Western countries. Often, you can get

38 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

the value-added taxes (VAT) refunded at the airport,” says Jean Yves Chainon, founder of OOAworld, an online travel and photography magazine. Also worth checking out are beauty products. For instance, “the DFS Duty Free Galleria recently opened at Terminal 4 in JFK, and you can find things there that you cannot find in most other stores, like Tom Ford, La Mer, Jo Malone, Bond No. 9. and some discounts on brands that usually are not discounted, like Estée Lauder and Lancôme,” says Lois Pasternak, publisher and editor of Travel Markets Insider.

DO DUTY-FREE SHOPS OFFER UNIQUE ITEMS? A little of both. “If you are a scotch drinker, certain brands like Macallan, Johnnie Walker and Glenfiddich offer duty-free exclusives that can only be found at duty-free stores. Collectors love them,” says Pasternak. Another tip is to buy souvenirs last minute. For example, at Qatar’s new Hamad International Airport, travelers can purchase Qatari-themed souvenirs such as colorful pashminas and jewelry at the souk-style Bazaar boutique. ●

2

Hair care, makeup, perfume products. Beauty products are sometimes sold at prices up to 60 percent off regular retail.

3

Handbags and designer goods. But be aware that these deals rotate through the year. “At times they’re 30 percent off ... sometimes they’re on par with what you would spend at a regular department store and sometimes the designer goods are 10 percent more.” What’s not a good deal? Souvenir T-shirts and trinkets. Leave those I Heart London shirts at Heathrow.

THINKSTOCK

FIRST, KNOW WHAT DUTY-FREE SHOPPING IS.


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SALAMANDER RESORT & SPA

The Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, Va., has a thriving equestrian program that includes riding lessons, guided rides and wellness classes such as yoga on horseback.


Rural Relaxation Spa resorts offer the chance to unwind and reconnect, just a short drive from major cities BY CHRISTINE NEFF

THINKSTOCK

T

he drive starts out in bumper-to-bumper Beltway traffic. Not surprising, as this is the busy Washington metro area – and it’s rush hour. As the road heads west toward Virginia’s horse country, it narrows from six lanes to four lanes to two. The buildings out the window shrink as well, from high-rise towers to strip malls with big-box stores, until finally a cute little country town set in rolling hills makes up the scenery outside. An old-fashioned general store advertises hot pies for sale. A roundabout in the road slows traffic to a crawl. Ah, this feels better.

41


— SHEILA C. JOHNSON, OWNER OF SALAMANDER RESORT & SPA

42 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

In today’s world, more of us live and work in big cities, barely managing the stress that comes with the rush of it all. As we work more days and longer hours — rarely taking the vacation time we’ve earned — a trip out of town becomes a little like that joke on Seinfeld: When Kramer gets asked to tag along with George to Queens, he answers, “Yeah, I love going to the country.” But a visit to the country — the real country, those beautiful rural areas within an hour-or-so drive of a city — can be just what we all need to unwind a bit. Slow down. Breathe. “The fact is, people are living in cities that are stressful, and they crave nature and relaxation more than people that live in rural areas,” says Beth McGroarty, research director at SpaFinder Wellness. There’s a budding niche in the hospitality industry to support this need. AT THE FOREFRONT is Sheila C. Johnson, and the Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, Va. The beautifully designed, equestrian-themed property was a pet project for Johnson, co-founder, with former

JERALD COUNCIL

I just know that in my own home … people come in and say, ‘Oh, this is lovely.’ So what I wanted to really do was have guests feel welcome to my home.”


FROM TOP: H. DARR BEISER; JUSTIN KRIEL (2)

Rural Relaxation

husband Robert Johnson, of the BET network. The resort exudes her signature design style: comfortable luxury. Fireplaces glow in the corner of every room in the lobby. A leatherfilled library has books from Johnson’s own shelves. Artwork and sculptures from her personal collection decorate each room. And the subtle equestrian theme incorporates mementoes from daughter Paige’s horseback-riding career. “I just know that in my own home, which I love, people come in and say, ‘Oh, this is lovely.’ So what I wanted to really do was have guests feel welcome to my home,” she says. And it does feel like home — only better. The resort sits on 340 acres in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, about an hour’s drive from Washington and 35 minutes from Dulles International Airport. It reflects Johnson’s passion for art, music, family and wellness. “Relaxation — that is the whole idea,” she says. “It’s not only about de-stressing. It’s also about reconnecting.” Central to the resort is the 23,000-square-foot spa and wellness

The Salamander architecture reflects the surrounding Virginia countryside. Spa guests can lounge by a private infinity pool that overlooks the foothills of the Shenandoah Mountains.

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Relax On the Cheap uxury spa/resorts aren’t the only way to experience a weekend of rural relaxation. Another great resource is state park systems. Many states run campgrounds with opportunities for hiking, biking, swimming and more. Some parks offer cabin rentals, which are a fun way to “camp” without roughing it too much. In Virginia, where the 36 state parks routinely rank among the top in the country, all parks have cabins that come with two bedrooms, a kitchen, living room and bathroom. Prices vary depending on the season, but they’re comparable to a moderately priced hotel room. “The core component of the mission, from the very beginning, has been to provide people a rural, affordable opportunity,” says Jim Meisner Jr., public relations specialist for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Virginia parks draw visitors from local cities, as well as places as far away as Canada. The state’s wide-ranging terrain means campers can experience the mountains of Shenandoah State Park, the beaches of First Landing State Park and a bit of everything in between.“It gives folks an opportunity to unplug, unwind and relax,” Meisner says. virginia.gov/state-parks

center. Guests can enjoy massage, body wraps and scrubs or a soak in the “vitality” pool. The tranquil space has 14 treatment rooms, a couples suite, a private infinity pool and more. “You don’t want to just run in and take the massage. We encourage our clients to be able to take in the experience. … Everything in the spa encompasses that idea to de-stress, reconnect, whether it be individually or with that significant other,” she says. That mission extends throughout the property, which has a restaurant, wine bar (key for this winery-stacked region) and cooking studio on site, as well as a working stable. A unique type of emotional therapy called Equa-Spective encourages guests to commune with horses as a way to better understand themselves. “When I built this, it was really to focus on health and wellness,” Johnson says. AND SHE’S RIGHT on trend, according to McGroarty, who keeps an eye on the industry. She terms this the “Urban-Close Wellness Retreat Trend,” describing the growth of spa resorts near metro areas, particularly on the East Coast. “People are so stressed and so overworked, they are reimagining what a vacation should achieve for them,” she says. Gone are the days of hedonistic trips filled with overindulgence of food and drink. Now, travelers want a getaway that is part pleasure, part health: spa services, wellness and group fitness classes and healthy meals complemented by a glass of good wine.

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VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF CONSERVATION AND RECREATION; SALAMANDER SPA & RESORT

L


Rural Relaxation

JERALD COUNCIL

“The benefit of a vacation like that goes without saying,” says McGroarty. “It’s certainly better than coming home and having a hangover.” DONALD STAMETS, MANAGING director of the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, sees this same trend playing out on his Florida property. Jacksonville, about 40 minutes away, is a top feeder market for guests who enjoy the secluded destination with its 3.5 miles of beachfront, 9 miles of hiking/biking trails, pools, tennis courts, golf course, spa and more. “It feels like this whole other world,” he says, noting the plethora of live oak trees covered with Spanish moss. “This location is just so incredibly charming and offers such an amazing quality of life.” His team is embracing the trend toward health. The culinary workers recently started an aquaponic greenhouse that raises seedlings for fruits, vegetables and herbs then uses them in the kitchen. The next step? Bringing those elements into the spa for nature-inspired treatments, as locally sourced as it gets. Back at Salamander, Johnson explains plans to build single-family homes on the outer ring of the property. Forty-nine units will be sold (at a starting price of $1.5 million), and each comes with full access to the resort and spa. It’s not hard to imagine these units becoming weekend retreats for city slickers in need of a beyond-the-Beltway escape. And Johnson is happy to oblige. “I want to take care of the client,” she says, “and that’s what’s going to separate me out from anybody else.”

The Salamander displays art and sculpture from Johnson’s personal collection, including a bronze piece of her children, Paige and Brett, below.

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Rural Relaxation

Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort

P lan your Own Rural Retreat

Need to get away? Check out these great spa/resorts near you.

Rue Charlemagne, Braselton, Ga.; 678-425-0900; chateauelan.com

AUSTIN Lake Austin Spa Resort: This Texas hill country resort offers classes in healthy cooking, meditation, self-empowerment and more. But if all you want to do is relax, spend the day at the 25,000-square-foot spa that offers more than 100 unique treatments. 1705 S. Quinlan Park Rd., Austin; 512-372-7300; lakeaustin.com

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CHARLOTTE Old Edwards Inn and Spa: This European-style resort in the Blue Ridge Mountains recharges guests with golf, shopping, fine dining and a range of spa services. “The chef there is phenomenal,” says Elaine Carey, a travel agent with Travel Experts, Inc. “He goes so far as to know what goes in the soil that the animals are eating. It’s all organic farm-to-table.” 445

DENVER The Broadmoor: The five-star Colorado Springs resort near the southern edge of the Rockies offers views of the stunning natural landscape. Book a Wilderness Experience for an even more remote getaway. 1 Lake Ave.,

Main St., Highlands, N.C.; 866-5268008; oldedwardsinn.com

Colorado Springs, Colo.; 855-6347711; broadmoor.com

CHICAGO Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa: The resort promises a “relaxing, country-style getaway” with golf, spa treatments and fine dining. Guests can go horseback riding, take a hot air balloon for a ride over the countryside — or simply

JACKSONVILLE Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort: The resort has an onproperty nature center, aquaponic greenhouse and organic garden, more than 7 miles of canopied trails and salt-marsh paddle board and kayak tours. Not to mention

do nothing at all. 444 Eagle Ridge Dr., Galena, Ill.; 815-777-5000; eagleridge.org 444

OMNI IAMELIA ISLAND PLANTATION RESORT

ATLANTA Chateau Élan Winery & Resort: The sweeping views of the north Georgia foothills are only 40 minutes away from the Atlanta metro area. The on-site vineyard grows chardonnay, merlot, cabernet and Riesling grapes. Unwind with a glass of wine. 100


three championship golf courses and a full-service spa and salon.

Terranea Resort

39 Beach Lagoon Rd., Amelia Island, Fla.; 904-261-6161; omnihotels.com

LOS ANGELES Terranea Resort: Thirty miles south of Los Angeles along the Pacific Ocean, the eco-resort offers luxury accommodations, panoramic ocean views and a range of upscale amenities, including restaurants, spa services and activities such as kayaking and horseback riding. 100 Terranea Way, Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.; 310-265-2800; terranea.com

NEW YORK Winvian Farm: A 2 ½-hour drive takes you a world away from the Big Apple. This luxury resort in the Litchfield Hills in Connecticut borders woods. Indulge with farmto-table cuisine complemented by fine wines from the cellar, then walk it off on the 113-acre estate.

PITTSBURGH Nemacolin Woodlands Resort: On 2,000 acres in southwestern Pennsylvania, the resort has an acclaimed spa, 36 holes of championship golf, an outdoor sporting facility and top-notch dining. In the winter, come to ski or snowshoe. 1001 Lafayette Dr.,

PHOENIX JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa: Set on 25 acres of Sonoran Desert, the resort embodies the spirit of the Southwest. Guests can relax through hiking and meditation, a dip in a pool or a round of golf — or spend the day in the spa.

155 Alain White Rd., Morris, Conn.; 860-567-9600; winvian.com

Farmington, Pa.; 724-329-8555; nemacolin.com

5402 E. Lincoln Dr., Scottsdale, Ariz.; 480-948-1700; marriott.com

Salish Lodge & Spa

SEATTLE Salish Lodge & Spa: Thirty minutes from Seattle, the Pacific Northwest resort overlooks Snoqualmie Falls. The 84 guestrooms have custom furniture, jetted tubs and fireplaces. Spa services feature Pacific Northwest herbs, plants and honey. 6501 Railroad

PETER COOPER; THOMAS M. BARWICK

Ave., SE, Snoqualmie, Wash.; 800-272-5474; salishlodge.com

WASHINGTON, D.C. Salamander Resort & Spa: The spa is central to the Salamander. Guests can de-stress through massage, body wraps and scrubs or a soak in the “vitality” pool. Then grab a glass of wine from a local winery at the on-site, equestrianthemed bar. Middleburg, Va.; 540-687-3600; salamanderresort.com

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Rural Relaxation

Hammock Beach

What's Next for Sheila Johnson? From entertainment to hospitality, the savvy businesswoman expands her reach

S

heila Johnson calls this her third act. Seated in the cozy library of the Salamander, her luxury spa/resort in Middleburg, Va., she recalls her two previous careers — first as a concert violinist, then, with former husband Robert Johnson, as co-founder of the BET network. While her second act brought fame and fortune, this one, she says, brings happiness. “Yes, I’m happiest now in my third act. There’s not a day that goes by that I’m bored. Every day in the hospitality industry is different. … Always highs and lows, but you work through them,” she says. Johnson, right now, is experiencing the highs. Her goal? To make her business, Salamander Hotels & Resorts, resonate in

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the hospitality industry in the same way as other luxury brands. She owns two properties: The Salamander Resort & Spa opened in August 2013 in Virginia’s horse country, and Innisbrook, a famed stop on the PGA Tour, in Tampa, Fla. Her company manages these locations and two additional resorts in Florida — Reunion in Orlando and Hammock Beach in Palm Coast. Since assuming management, the company has invested millions in enhancements to the hotel properties and their golf courses. The growing company has several more projects under development: • Plans were recently approved for a $72 million expansion of the Hammock Beach resort. A new

198-room oceanfront hotel and convention space will join the lineup in the next few years. • Salamander will manage a 150-room hotel and 200-room resort and spa being built in Tryon, N.C., one of the biggest equestrian communities on the East Coast. • In Destin, Fla., the company will open a 171-room resort hotel in spring 2016. Called The Henderson, the $300 million project promises a new level of luxury for the Florida Panhandle. The company also is building 49 single-family homes at the Salamander resort location. With a starting price of $1.5 million (up to more than $3 million), the houses will go on sale this fall. Owners can opt to have the homes managed as vacation rentals, which will give the hotel more inventory — a necessity, according to Johnson. “I really want to become one of the premier luxury hotel markets,” she says. — Christine Neff

H. DARR BEISER; SALAMANDER HOTELS & RESORTS (2)

The Henderson


Annual Events Garden Jubilee

Memorial Day weekend NC Apple Festival Labor Day weekend Flat Rock Playhouse mid-April thru late-December Rhythm & Brews Third Thursdays, May - Sept

Check out

North Carolina Mountain State Fair early September Music On Main Street June thru late-August, every Friday

Hike Camp

Street Dances July thru mid-August, every Monday

Explore

Art On Main first Saturday & Sunday in October

Relax Ask for your Travel Guide today!

800.828.4244

Farm City Day first Saturday in October

historichendersonville.org

Let us treat you like family,

Stay Here On Your Way There.

Nash County Travel & Tourism 100 Coastline Street, Suite 313 Rocky Mount, NC 27804 (252)972.5080 www.rockymounttravel.com

North Carolina


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PHOTO ILLUSTRATION: ERIN AULOV, THINKSTOCK


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Take the long way home with these iconic summer drives

AS GAS PRICES FALL, the road trip becomes a more affordable option for summer fun. Spend the dollars you save at the pump on an extra night at a special hotel, the perfect souvenir — or, maybe, just keep on drivin’. Here are some windshield vistas that provide heart-stopping, camera-ready scenery, as well as a glimpse into the nature, culture and history of our great land. Each drive showcases a distinct American region in distinctly American ways. Some are short enough for a day trip, while others deserve a long weekend — or longer. So pack up and hit the highway!

BY ANNETTE THOMPSON

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1 APPALACHI A N S UM M ER THE ROAD: Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia and North Carolina | DISTANCE: 469 miles | INFO: nps.gov/blri; blueridgeparkway.org/

CAN’T MISS

Motor up the steep 4.6-mile spur to Mount Mitchell (mile 355), the highest point east of the Mississippi (6,683 feet). Temps have been known to drop to a frigid 28 degrees. PHOTO SPOT

Snap away at the picturesque clapboard Mabry Mill (mile 176 in Meadows of Dan, Va.) reflecting in the mill pond. WANT MORE?

Cruise along the 105-mile Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park on the north end of the parkway.

THINKSTOCK

CALLED “AMERICA’S FAVORITE drive,” this famed road traverses the backbone of the Appalachians between the Shenandoah and the Great Smoky Mountains national parks. Plan a minimum of three days to cover the full route, which wends around S-curves and switchbacks through verdant greenery. The Virginia section tends to have fewer crowds, rounder hills, hidden coves and quirky stops. Don’t miss the Poor Farmer’s Market (mile 177), an old-timey store with apple butter, quilts and fried pies aplenty. And drop by the Blue Ridge Music Center (mile 213) for some good ole midday bluegrass jams. On the North Carolina side, the Orchard at Altapass (mile 328) has ripening heirloom apples and mountain crafts worth the stop.

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LOWCOUNTRY MEANDERINGS

DISCOVERSOUTHCAROLINA.COM

THE ROAD: U.S. Route 17 between Charleston, S.C., and Savannah, Ga. | DISTANCE: 125 miles | INFO: charlestoncvb.com, beaufortsc.org, visitsavannah.com

LIVE OAK; SPANISH moss; sharp-fingered palmettos; lazy wide rivers; estuaries that burnish bronze and orange at sunrise and sunset. Sound appealing? Sure, you could traverse U.S. 17 in an afternoon, but even a week is not enough time to see it fully. Start just north of Charleston in Mount Pleasant, S.C., where Gullah families, descendants of African slaves, sell traditional sweetgrass baskets from wooden highway stands. Then, cross Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, left, into Charleston’s historic peninsula for shops and Lowcountry delicacies. When you break away, meander along the highway that leads to the Eden-like isles of Wadmalaw, Kiawah and Edisto, S.C. About halfway, Pat Conroy fans (and Forrest Gump fans, too) should veer off to explore Beaufort, S.C., the prettiest small town in America. From there, U.S. 17 crosses the ACE Basin, where three rivers create marshlands that melt into the horizon. The stately brick-lined streets of Savannah hold 22 historic squares filled with enough dining and shopping for a lifetime.

CAN’T MISS Take a side trip off U.S. Route 17 at John’s Island in South Carolina to view the Angel Oak, a live oak with foliage that extends more than 17,000 square feet and is believed to be as much as 1,500 years old. PHOTO SPOT Stop for a photo op at the ruins of Old Sheldon Church in Yemassee, S.C., which was destroyed in both the Revolutionary and Civil wars. WANT MORE? Continue south on U.S. 17 all the way to the Florida line. Take a 30-minute ferry ride to the islands of Sapelo, Ga., a tiny Gullah community, and Cumberland, Ga., a National Park Serviceprotected National Seashore.

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IN SEARCH OF WILE E. COYOTE THE ROAD: Marfa loop route (U.S. Route 67 to Farm Road 170 to Texas State Highway 118) to Big Bend National Park | DISTANCE: 236 miles | INFO: visitbigbend.com

THIS DESERT DRIVE crosses some of the most remote stretches in America. It travels from Marfa in West Texas — one very hip small art town — to the place where the Rio Grande meets the Chihuahuan Desert, over to the ghost town of Terlingua, Texas, and the Big Bend National Park. It’s the ideal setting to spy Wile E. Coyote chasing the celluloid inspiration for The Road Runner. Indeed, it’s here that real versions of the lightning-quick, small-chicken-sized bird eat local rattlesnakes and scorpions. Gorgeous red rocks, dagger points of agave lechuguilla, plump barrels of rainbow cacti and scrubby clumps of creosote dot the rugged roadside. In the cool mornings and evenings, you might glimpse jackrabbits. In the middle of a summer day, the desert floor can reach temperatures of 120 degrees, the oily black asphalt shimmering in the heat. Big Bend is a large national park but has very few visitors. Bring plenty of water, food and gear.

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THINKSTOCK

3


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4

GATOR BAIT

THE ROAD: Loop Road (County Road 94) in Big Cypress National Preserve, Fla. | DISTANCE: 24 miles INFO: nps.gov/bicy

THINKSTOCK; NAPLES MARCO ISLAND EVERGLADES CVB; ALAN S. MALTZ

ALLIGATORS LAZE ON this unpaved roadway when the sun’s out, but don’t worry; they’ll politely move aside so your car can trundle past. The scenery, full of coco plums and sabal palms, bromeliads and orchids, feels like the pages of a nature magazine. Cypress swamps — full of frilly feathered wading birds — hug roadsides, and wriggly, crawly creatures lurk just beneath the water’s surface. This is South Florida at its wildest, and because it’s actually just 13 miles north of the more popular Everglades National Park, the drive is off most tourists’ radar. If you’re feeling brave, get out and get your feet wet. You’ll experience the real Florida.

CAN’T MISS The Gator Hook 5-mile hiking trail

(2.2 miles in) follows logging roads from the 1950s. Cypress beams, impervious to decay, mark the way.

PHOTO SPOT Sweetwater Strand, 5 miles

in, looks like a postcard of a cypress swamp. WANT MORE? Visit nearby Billie Swamp Safari to meet the local

Seminole tribe, take an airboat ride and learn about life on the swamp.

CAN’T MISS Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive

climbs to one of the Big Bend’s best views — come for sunset.

PHOTO SPOT The Santa Elena Canyon

walls stretch up to 1,500 feet above the river, the site of whitewater rafting.

WANT MORE? Spend

a couple of days hanging at Cibolo Creek Ranch, between Marfa and Presidio, Texas. cibolo creekranch.com.

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THE ROAD: Needles Highway and Iron Mountain Road in South Dakota | DISTANCE: 51 miles | INFO: blackhillsbadlands.com YES, MOUNT RUSHMORE is clearly impressive, but nearby Crazy Horse Memorial is also something to see. The figure of the Lakota tribesman on horseback emerging from the mountainside was first envisaged in the 1940s by Rushmore sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski and Chief Henry Standing Bear. Ever since his death in 1982, the sculptor’s descendants have continued to painstakingly chip away at the mammoth rock. Continue deep into the Black Hills along Needles Highway (South Dakota Highway 87), past pine forests, and see the largest herd of bison outside Yellowstone National Park roaming in Custer State Park. Here, finger-like points of granite rise from the forest floor. The most popular spot, Cathedral Spires, sits in the shadow of Harney Peak (7,242 feet), the highest summit between the Rockies and the Swiss Alps. Next, turn onto Iron Mountain Road (U.S. Route 16A) for 17 miles of jaw-dropping panoramas. It’s known for its wooden spiral-shaped bridges called pigtails and one-lane tunnels that were built to frame Mount Rushmore.

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CAN’T MISS Stick around Mount Rushmore National Memorial in the evening to watch the lighting ceremonies. PHOTO SPOT Bring your selfie stick for a portrait of you and the emerging Crazy Horse Memorial. WANT MORE? Head to Badlands National Park, below, a grass

prairie fairyland of bizarrely eroded buttes and gorges.

SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM (2)

5

OF PRESIDENTS AND INDIAN CHIEFS


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7

6

ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGHS

chasecountychamber.org; manhattancvb.org

THE ROAD: Mount Evans

Scenic Byway & Wilderness in Colorado | DISTANCE: 28 miles from Idaho Springs to Mount Evans, Colo. | INFO: mountevans.com ON THIS 32-MILE drive out of Denver, you can bag a Fourteener without breaking a sweat. But be sure to bring a jacket — it can be 40 degrees colder at the summit. As the highest paved road in the USA, Mount Evans starts at 8,700 feet at I-70 and snakes up to 14,130 feet, where a quarter-mile trail leads to the 14,264-foot summit. Winding like a hiking trail around the mountain for 14 miles, the narrow asphalt emerges above the timberline — and the clouds.

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THE ROAD: Kansas Highway K-177 | DISTANCE: 86 miles from Cassoday, Kan., to Manhattan, Kan. | INFO: nps.gov/tapr;

CAN’T MISS You’ll spy bighorn sheep, mountain goats, above, marmots and golden-mantled ground squirrels hanging out by the road in the mornings. PHOTO SPOT Anyplace is

good for grabbing nature photos. Arrive in the early morning on a weekday to guarantee fewer people and more critters for your shot.

WANT MORE? South of

Denver, a 19-mile winding road climbs Pikes Peak to an elevation of 14,115 feet for more spectacular views.

TAKE EXIT I-35 AT Cassoday, Kan., and explore small towns set amid the sea of golden grass that once ranged from Texas to Canada. Wander the streets of Cottonwood Falls, Kan., before setting out for the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve just north of town, either by coach or car. By September, these knee-high grasses will tower above your chest, tall enough that only a buck’s antlers move above them. Ride on through Council Grove, Kan., where you can still see the ruts dug by Conestoga wagons 100 years ago.

CAN’T MISS

The Flint Hills Discovery Center in Manhattan, Kan., interprets the area’s geology and culture. PHOTO SPOT

Take a picture with the furry bison separating the green grasses at the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve.

WANT MORE?

Each June, the Symphony in the Flint Hills plays host to an outdoors concert on the prairie featuring the Kansas City Symphony orchestra.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: CATHY EDWARDS; KANSAS DEPARTMENT OF WILDLIFE, PARKS & TOURISM; CATHY EDWARDS

THE TALLGRASS PRAIRIE


See the beauty as they saw it over 100 years ago, from Estes Park, Colorado. Base camp for Rocky Mountain National Park. VisitEstesPark.com/centennial


ROOmS WITH A VIEW Window, window on the wall,

who has the fairest views of all? We think you’ll agree, these eight are tough to beat. BY ALLISON ENTREKIN

F

or your summer vacation, set your sights on a room with vistas galore. From the Miami skyline to the waters of the Caribbean, desert mountains to legendary Fenway Park, the views from these rooms are truly a feast for the eyes. They’re nourishment for the soul too, reminding you each time you look out the window why you decided to go there in the first place.

60 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015 2 MAG NAME XXXXXXXXXX

1.

GAYLORD NATIONAL RESORT

With 2,000 rooms, this waterfront hotel is a city unto itself — and it has the views to prove it. More than 450 of its accommodations look over the 19-story atrium, which contains replicas of a Colonial-era mercantile shop and a Federalist-style farmhouse, two restaurants and a stream, all beneath a leafy canopy of plants and trees. Three times a night, the Atrium Fountain Show entertains balcony gazers with spurts of water that shoot 60 feet into the air. Just beyond the hotel, an illuminated observation wheel circles over the Potomac River waterfront and gives you a glimpse of the Washington, D.C., monuments. With so much to see, you might find it difficult to leave your faux city for the real one. Rooms start at $289. 201 Waterfront St., National Harbor, Md.; 301-965-4000; nationalharbor.com


3

GAYLORD NATIONAL RESORT


2.

MIRAVAL ARIZONA RESORT & SPA

MIRAVAL ARIZONA RESORT & SPA

Situated on 400 acres within the dramatic Sonoran Desert, this all-inclusive resort has views so rugged that civilization feels a million miles away. Behold the wild cacti, sandy dunes and Santa Catalina Mountains, a playground for daredevil rock climbers. For a truly immersive experience, stay in one of the 16 privately owned villas, which open onto the sandy landscape and even offer outdoor showers and beds. As remote as this resort feels, it still has modern conveniences, such as plush robes, the hotelâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s signature Cactus Cream bath products and high-speed Wi-Fi. Standard rooms start at $525 per person; villas start at $2,435 per person. 5000 E. Via Estancia Miraval, Tucson; 800-232-3969; miravalresorts.com

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ROOmS

HOTEL COMMONWEALTH

WITH A VIEW

3.

HOTEL COMMONWEALTH

Nothing says “Bahh-stin” like a trip to Fenway Park, the nation’s oldest major league ballpark. Seize the home-field advantage at Hotel Commonwealth, where the newly redesigned Fenway Rooms overlook the scoreboard and outfield. “When you look out the window of one of our Fenway Rooms, it’s almost as though you can reach out and touch the park,” says Adam Sperling, the hotel’s

general manager. “You can feel the energy from Fenway Park in your room, and the view of this iconic place becomes a part of every guest’s experience.” For the ultimate baseball experience, buy a package that includes seats atop the park’s Green Monster as well as executive suite living. All rooms start at $339. 500 Commonwealth Ave., Boston; 617933-5000; hotelcommonwealth.com

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4.

MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MIAMI

From its vantage point on the private island of Brickell Key, this Forbes Travel Guide triple five-star property lets guests take in views of Biscayne Bay and the Miami skyline beyond. “Guests can truly see all Miami has to offer from our terraces — from vibrant city life to lush landscapes and the sparkling blue bay,” says Jorge Gonzalez, the hotel’s general manager. For a serious splurge, opt for the Oriental Suite, complete with a balcony that runs the length of the suite and faces The Magic City. Standard rooms start at $459; Oriental Suite starts at $7,500. 500 Brickell Key Dr., Miami; 305-913-8288; mandarinoriental. com/miami

64 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015


ROOmS

GEORGE APOSTOLIDIS

WITH A VIEW

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ROOmS WITH A VIEW

5.

BACARA RESORT & SPA

From its perch on a 78-acre coastal bluff, this Mediterranean-style resort offers panoramic views of the Santa Ynez Mountains and the crashing Pacific Ocean. The shimmering Santa Barbara coastline and thousands of monarch butterflies that congregate nearby appear like something out of a fantasy. No matter which guest room you opt for, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll have a private patio or balcony with views of the ocean, mountains or garden. Pour a glass of wine, have a seat and enjoy the splendor of it all. Standard rooms start at $450. 8301 Hollister Ave., Santa Barbara, Calif.; 855-968-0100; bacararesort.com

Forget windows. At this West Indies resort, the entire fourth wall of every room is missing, offering guests floor-to-ceiling views of the Caribbean Sea and the famed volcanic spires known as the Pitons. Private infinity pools curve into the open expanse, so you can float with a fruity libation in perfect seclusion, gazing at the magnificent scene in the distance. For the best views in the house, opt for the Sun or Galaxy suites, which are situated at the highest elevations and have infinity pools with the widest panoramic views. Basic rooms start at $1,050; Sun suite starts at $2,100; Galaxy suite starts at $2,600. Soufriere, St. Lucia; 800-223-1108; jademountain.com

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JIM BARTSCH; JADE MOUNTAIN

6.

JADE MOUNTAIN


Legends live on in Corolla. Corolla.

Discover a land of wild wonder on the shores of the Currituck Outer Banks, NC.

The legendary wild horses of Corolla, unique historical sites, family friendly beaches and warm coastal breezes are just a few of the reasons why now is a great time to plan your visit.

Call 877-287-7488 for a free visitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s guide

www.VisitCurrituck.com


ROOmS WITH A VIEW

8.

PARROT CAY BY COMO

A private island in the British West Indies accessible only by boat, this ultra-luxe destination is known for its unspoiled views of sugarwhite sand, swaying palm trees and the turquoise Atlantic Ocean. The most coveted views can be found at the COMO Villa, a secluded three-bedroom hideaway that opens onto a heated swimming pool, alfresco dining area and

HOTEL BELLECLAIRE

It’s one thing to stroll down Broadway in New York’s bustling Upper West Side. It’s quite another to see the avenue from one of Hotel Belleclaire’s Broadway King Rooms, which showcase a rare four-window, panoramic perspective. “It offers unexpected views of the neighborhood,” says Robert Holmes, the general manager. “It’s the vantage point that makes it special, with multiple windows in bay style surrounding the guest bed.” Indeed, the views are so unique, famous names such as Babe Ruth and Mark Twain have opted to stay at this historic property. Standard rooms start at $265; Broadway King Rooms start at $389. 250 W. 77th St., New York; 212-362-7700; hotelbelleclaire.com

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TRIUMPH HOTELS; COMO HOTELS AND RESORTS

7.

private beach. Slide open the doors and let the ocean breeze cool you off while you watch the sun set. Thirsty? Ring the private butler service, available 24 hours a day, and ask for a bottle of champagne. Standard rooms start at $500; COMO villas start at $4,300. Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands; 855727-7682; comohotels.com/ parrotcay ●


Escape this

Summer with

Book your escape at daysinn.com at least seven days in advance and save 15% off the hotel’s Best Available Rate. Plus earn Wyndham Rewards points with every qualified stay.

PLAN AHEAD AND SAVE 15%*

daysinn.com * The book in advance (7 days) and save 15% is available at participating Days Inn® hotels for reservations booked by August 31, 2015. Reservation must be booked at least 7 days in advance of arrival date with travel completed on or before October 31, 2015. New bookings only; not applicable to group bookings. Reservation must be pre-paid with a valid credit card and is non-cancellable and non-refundable. In the event of cancellation or modification, guest will forfeit total room charge plus taxes for the entire reservation. Savings are discounted from property’s Best Available Rate excluding taxes, resort/service fees, incidentals, gratuities, or additional per room, per night charges that may be imposed. Rooms at the discount are limited and subject to availability. Blackout dates, room type exclusions, and other restrictions may apply and vary by individual hotel. Please inquire at time of reservation. ©2015 Days Inns Worldwide, Inc. All Rights Reserved. All Days Inn hotels are independently owned and operated.


THE NORTH SHORE


Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Stunning Secret:

THE NORTH COAST If summer vacation means rolling waves, crystal-clear water and sugar-sand beaches, then the Great Lakes are calling your name.

THINKSTOCK

BY KRISTI VALENTINI

oasting more coastline than the East and West coasts combined, the freshwater Great Lakes mimic open seas with their sun-onwater sunsets, massive sand dunes and adorable beach towns. Soak up

vitamin D along the pristine shores, or explore remote islands and underwater shipwrecks. Hanging out on this hidden coast can be adventurous or chill, but either way, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll look and feel golden. Here are nine great escapes on the Great Lakes.


THE NORTH COAST

Catch your dinner in ...

ASHTABULA COUNTY, OHIO

A

shtabula is derived from an Algonquin Indian term meaning “river of many fish.” The name fits this county that hugs Lake Erie since the lake and the rivers that empty into it are packed with perch come spring and steelhead trout and walleye in the summer and fall. “Lake Erie is the shallowest and most biologically diverse, which means it has more fish species than all the other Great Lakes,” says Mark Winchell, executive director of Ashtabula County Convention & Visitors Bureau. Visit the marina at Geneva State Park to get a fishing license, book a charter fishing boat or cast from the park’s shores. 4499 Padanarum Rd.; 440-4667565; parks.ohiodnr.gov/geneva

BENETKA ROAD COVERED BRIDGE

Drive along one of Ashtabula’s covered bridge trails to soak up the rustic passes. Then, eat inside one at Covered Bridge Pizza parlor in North Kingsville (6541 S. Main St.; 440-224-2252). At the end of your day, catch some z’s at The Lodge in the lakefront town Geneva-on-the-Lake (4888 North Broadway; 866-806-8066; thelodgeatgeneva.com).

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KRISTI VALENTINI; THINKSTOCK

COVERED BRIDGE CRAZE


SEA STACKS ALONG LAKE SUPERIOR, APOSTLE ISLANDS

Scuba for shipwrecks in ...

APOSTLE ISLANDS, WISCONSIN

N

ope, no neon fish and technicolor coral on this scuba trip. But if you immerse yourself in the clear waters of Chequamegon Bay, you’ll dive back to a time when Lake Superior was dominated by tall ships and steamers. The underwater history lesson includes the Lucerne, a schooner that wrecked in 1886, and two other ships — the Sevona, a steamer, and the Pretoria, a colossal schooner-barge, both sunk by a ferocious storm on the same day in 1905. All three ships were carrying cargo through a

passage that went from New York City to New Orleans via a series of canals before their untimely expiration. “Every ship is unique with its part in history, how it was built and its demise,” says Greg Such, owner of Shipwreck Adventures in Two Rivers,Wis. (2004 Washington St.; 920-4820725; shipwreckadventures.com). Northland Equipment & Diving (800-786-2109; northland equipment.net) offers dive classes and takes everyone from newbies to advanced divers out to see the wrecks.

TRIP PLANNER Sea kayaking is another great way to explore the red sandstone islands. Hunt through cliffside sea caves and even spy shipwrecks below the surface with Living Adventure in Bayfield (715-779-9503; livingadventure.com). Refuel at Maggie’s flamingo-pink house (257 Manypenny Ave.; 715-779-5641; maggies-bayfield.com), then rest your head at The Bayfield Inn (20 Rittenhouse Ave.; 715-779-3363; bayfieldinn. com) overlooking the lake.

Enjoy city and sky in ...

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

S

prawling out across the Lake Michigan shore, Chicago is the birthplace of skyscrapers — and its skyline is testament to that. Indeed, the Windy City is home to two of the tallest buildings in the world: the Trump International Hotel & Tower and the Willis Tower (formerly known as the Sears Tower). Book a 30-minute lakefront speed-boat tour on Seadog cruises (888-636-7737; seadogcruises.com) to get the best view and learn about Chicago landmarks, architecture and history.

UNWIND AND INDULGE Relax at Hotel Lincoln in the increasingly upwardly mobile neighborhood of Lincoln Park (1816 N. Clark St.; 312-254-4700; jdvhotels.com). For a sweeping panorama of the lake, unwind with a cognac Sazerac at the hotel’s rooftop bar, the J. Parker. Eat at Franks ’n’ Dawgs (1863 N. Clybourn Ave.; 312-281-5187; franksndawgs.com) for a gourmet spin on low-brow chow.

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THE NORTH COAST

Take the whole gang to ...

RACINE, WISCONSIN

WIND POINT LIGHTHOUSE, RACINE, WIS.

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ocated between Chicago and Milwaukee, lakefront Racine is known for having the largest Danish community outside of Denmark — and an amazingly pristine beach to boot. North Beach is a Blue Wave-certified clean stretch, perfect for sandcastle building and frolicking in the shallow, clear Lake Michigan waters. Claim your spot along the 1.2 miles of gleaming sand or pedal or walk the path to the zoo (about three blocks). Closer, there’s a sizable beachside playground when the kiddies need a change of scenery. During the summer, lifeguards are on duty and parking is free.

You can’t leave Racine without diving into a kringle, a buttery pastry with fruit or nut filling topped with icing. Sample flavors and take away your favorite at Bendtsen’s Bakery (3200 Washington Ave.; 262-6330365; bendtsensbakery. com). When the beach scene gets to be too much, put your feet up at Harbourwalk Hotel Racine (223 Gaslight Circle; 262-632-7777; harbourwalkhotelracine. com) on the marina.

74 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

THINKSTOCK

SWEET STUFF


Choose your path

Michiganâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Upper Peninsula

Choose oose se ey your ourr pat ou p path ath

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Extraordinary adventures d t S TA RT H E R E

Cross the Mackinac Bridge and let the adventures begin. Choose where to stay and what to do with our 2015 Travel Planner. Request yours today at

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REGION | LOC AT ION

Go gourmet in ...

TRAVERSE CITY, MICHIGAN

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Try sandboarding in ...

ST. JOSEPH, MICHIGAN

F

ans of sandboarding make a beeline for Dubai, Australia and Egypt. But in the States, you can hit the sand slopes along Lake Michigan. It’s just like snowboarding, says DeeDee Kampe, manager of Third Coast Surf Shop in St. Joseph, Mich., but a little easier and more forgiving than its icy counterpart. “It’s great for people of all ages because you go a little slower on sand than you would on snow, and you’re generally on smaller inclines,” she says. Rent a board from the shop and head over to Warren Dunes State Park, where hills peak at 260 feet and offer amazing topside views. If you’re leery about riding the dunes standing, rent a sand sled instead. But be warned: Trekking back up the slope is a major workout (no chairlifts here). 212 State St.; 269-932-4575; thirdcoastsurf shop.com

WALK AND SHOP In the summer, you can stroll the downtown brick streets of St. Joseph’s to the Saturday farmers market or the antiques market (held the first Sunday of the month) at Lake Bluff Park. Book a roomy suite at The Boulevard Inn & Bistro (521 Lake Blvd.; 269-983-6600; theboulevardinn.com) and scarf down a burger and local craft brew at The Buck (412 State St.; 269-281-0320; eatatthebuck.com).

76 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

t takes two ferry rides to get to this remote, stone-strewn island in the mouth of Green Bay. The payoff is having a quiet 912-acre island nearly all to yourself. Rock Island is a forested state park with 10 miles of trails and a 2,000-foot stretch of beach. With a strict no cars or bikes policy and patchy-at-best cellphone reception, it’s perfect for those looking to break from the daily grind. Follow the 5.2-mile Thordarson Loop Trail along the shoreline to see Viking Hall and the stone boathouse built by the island’s former owner — a wealthy Icelandic inventor who summered here in the early 1900s. dnr.wi.gov/topic/ parks/name/rockisland

PICNIC VIEWS

GO WILD

Get a picnic to go at Folgarelli’s Market & Wine Shop (424 W. Front St.; 231-941-7651; folgarellis.net) and head to Clinch Park beach, across the street from downtown, or to Chateau Chantel winery (15900 Rue de Vin; 800-969-4009; chateauchantal.com), where you’ll get hilltop views.

Choose from 42 backpack camping sites or stay at the old Pottawatamie Lighthouse and serve as a volunteer tour guide for a week (fori.us). There’s no electricity or running water, but you get a gorgeous view of Lake Michigan and a grassy yard perfect for lawn games.

POTTAWATAMIE LIGHTHOUSE

Go off the grid in ...

ROCK ISLANDS, WISCONSIN

I

EVE LANDSMAN; JON JAROSH/DOOR COUNTY VISITOR BUREAU

WARREN DUNES STATE PARK

resh from the fields surrounding Traverse City, tart cherries and juicy apples teem over tables and tumble out of baskets at local farmers markets. Whitefish is pulled from lake waters, and morel mushrooms are foraged from the woods. With this yummy abundance of fresh delicacies, not to mention the 50 wineries and 20 microbreweries in the region, it’s no wonder Traverse City is becoming a top foodie destination. Sure, you can find plenty of eclectic eateries along the downtown’s tree-lined streets, but grabbing eats from a food truck is a fun way to savor the region’s flavors. Simon Joseph is an early Traverse City food truck proselytizer with his restaurant on wheels, Roaming Harvest. His Korean tacos with Asian slaw and sriracha mayo became an instant hit. Now, a growing list of diverse food trucks have joined him. Find several parked at The Little Fleet bar (448 E. Front St.; 231-943-1116; thelittlefleet. com) every evening.


Pop by to play! This summer, go where good times pop up everywhere like beach umbrellas on our sandy Lake Michigan shore. Meet friends and family at our wineries and microbreweries. See unique sculptures and juried art shows. Paddle through our waters. Get silly in our childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s museums. Golf challenging courses. Gather up quarts of just-picked fruits and vegetables.Whirl around on a carousel. Lift your spirits at outdoor concerts, fairs and festivals. Then gaze at a breathtaking sunset before staying the night â&#x20AC;Ś and play again tomorrow.

swmichigan.org/escape 269-925-6301 facebook.com/swmtc


THE NORTH COAST

Learn to surf in ...

SHEBOYGAN, WISCONSIN

“S

heboygan has more aloha spirit than Hawaii,” insists Larry “Longboard” Williams, one of the pioneers of freshwater surfing. “Maybe it’s the Midwestern attitude of sharing and caring, but we are said to be the friendliest surfers on the planet.” Sheboygan, one hour north of Milwaukee, is called the “Malibu of the Midwest” with a 5-mile stretch of beach, its own reef and 22 breaks (that’s coastal terrain where waves break, for the uninitiated). Winds of 20-25 mph can produce 6-foot waves on Lake Michigan. And a few times a year, when conditions are just right, the swells can reach as high as 24 feet! Summer weather makes the lake calmer and warmer, both great conditions for beginners who can learn how to paddle and practice balancing. Get lessons and rent boards from EOS surf shop (510 N. 8th St.; 920-208-7873; eossurf.com).

SURF’S UP INDOORS

LAKE MICHIGAN

The surfing doesn’t have to end once you check into Blue Harbor Resort (725 Blue Harbor Dr.; 920-4522900; blueharborresort.com). Hone your new skills in the indoor water park’s surf simulator. And don’t leave the “bratwurst capital of the world” without sampling the charcoal-grilled meaty goodies at Schulz’s (1644 Calumet Dr.; 920-452-1880), an unassuming ’50s diner.

Go back in time in ...

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, CANADA

78 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club (143 Front St.; 905-468-3424; notlgolf.com), or see a theater performance during the Shaw Festival, a seven-month celebra-

tion of popular turn-of-the-century Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw (shawfest.com). End the day with a candlelit ghost tour of Fort George, a site battled for during the War of 1812 (51 Queen’s Parade.; 905-468-6621; friendsoffortgeorge.ca).

RETAIL THERAPY The lavender soap from Neob Lavender’s quaint shop is a fragrant souvenir (758 Niagara Stone Rd.; 905-682-0171; neoblavender.com). After shopping, devour a savory pork pie at Willow Cakes & Pastries (242 Mary St.; 905-468-2745; willowcakes.ca).

TRAVELWISCONSIN.COM; THINKSTOCK

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ust 16 miles north of Niagara Falls on the shore of Lake Ontario, Niagara-on-theLake is so picture-perfect, it feels like a Hollywood movie set. The water sparkles, and flowers hang off posts and abundantly overflow from flowerbeds in front of the 19th-century storefronts. Most of all, it’s the relaxed yesteryear vibe that makes you want to stay awhile. The village traces back to 1781 and was a haven for British Loyalists fleeing the U.S. during the Revolutionary War. Enjoy golf at one of the oldest courses in North America, the


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NORTHEAST | M Y TOW N

TODD MARTIN’S

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BEST PLACE TO

GO WILD “I don’t know if you go wild there, but Block Island is one of the wildest places in the area. There were historic shipwrecks there, but now it’s the place everyone goes to relax, shop, dine or enjoy one of the seasonal parties and events. It is this area’s answer to Martha’s Vineyard.” Block Island Ferry, Perrotti Park; 866-783-7996; blockislandferry.com

BEST PLACE TO

BE ADVENTUROUS “Choose any beach and you’ll have an adventure. We don’t fish, but we enjoy going to the rocky beaches and finding sea glass and crabs and all the beautiful views.” 82 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

The choices are endless. The town is focused on tourism but it’s not traditionally tourist-centric. Wherever you walk or drive, you find true beauty in the architecture and the landscape.”

BEST

BEST PLACE TO

HIDDEN GEM

EAT

The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum, of course. “One of the best things there is a Court Tennis court. Court Tennis is the game the (European royalty) played in the 1700s and how the game of tennis was born.“

Café Zelda is right on Thames Street, the main street through downtown, but the restaurant is quiet and intimate. “All the restaurants here have wonderful clam chowder, but Zelda’s is the best I’ve had.”

194 Bellevue Ave.; 401-849-3990; tennisfame.com

528 Thames St.; 401-849-4002; cafezelda.com

BEST PLACE TO

TAKE OUT-OF-TOWNERS The Newport Mansions. “(Our children) really enjoy the audio tour of The Breakers, a Vanderbilt mansion. My wife and I especially like the Isaac Bell House because it’s unique; it’s large but seems very livable.” The Breakers: 44 Ochre Point Ave.; Isaac Bell House: 70 Perry St.; 401-847-1000; newportmansions.org

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Dining on the Farm These New England hideaways swap pitchforks for salad forks BY DIANE BAIR AND PAMELA WRIGHT

84 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

JUST RIGHT FARM (2); THINKSTOCK

Just Right Farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dining room has open views of the surrounding gardens and forest, a beautiful setting for a delicious meal.


R

eady for a special night out? Skip the fancy restaurant and head to the country. In New England, the “farm dinner” concept is taking root. Farmers string up fairy lights, arrange fresh flowers and present multi-course feasts that celebrate summer’s bounty. The colorful, Instagramworthy food comes from the hosting farm or nearby growers. “Farm dinners are an important part of our buy-local movement,” says John Lebeaux, commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources. “Often set in a farm field, these unique dinners allow guests to engage with one another and learn where their food comes from, directly from the hands that produce it.” Food doesn’t get more fresh or more local than this — and you can taste the difference. “We prepare it simply and let the food speak for itself,” says Scott Willard, a farm dinner chef at White Gates Farm in Tamworth, N.H. Here’s a taste of what’s for dinner:

JUST RIGHT FARM, Plympton, Mass. A 300-year-old farm is the setting for this fresh-from-the-field, five-course feast. You’re welcome to roam the grounds and examine the garden before you settle in for a communal BYO-wine meal. Expect such fare as lobster in prosecco beurrè blanc, pork rib chops with peach and onion jam, chilled beet and watermelon soup, blueberry tart and sweet corn ice cream. $140 per person; 781-936-5330; justrightfarm.com

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NORTHEAST | N EW ENGL A N D

— JOHN LEBEAUX, MASSACHUSETTS DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURAL RESOURCES

THE BARN AT FLANAGAN FARM, Buxton, Maine A rock-star lineup of guest chefs, including two-time James Beard Award-winner Melissa Kelly, has made Flanagan’s Table a must-do for local foodies. Diners sit at a 50-top farm table for monthly, five-course dinners that offer a true taste of Maine. Even the beer is sourced locally. $115 per person (includes wine and gratuity); 207-232-3044; flanaganstable.com

WHITE GATES FARM, Tamworth, N.H. You won’t know what’s for dinner until you get here, and that’s part of the fun. It’s chef’s choice at this 110-acre organic farm. Visiting chefs work their magic with the farm’s organic produce, grass-fed meats and poultry, and the result is always scrumptious. Guests tour the farm and dine on the farmer’s porch with views of the Sandwich mountain range. $75 per person; 603-662-7538; whitegates farm.com

86 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

APPLETON FARMS, Hamilton and Ipswich, Mass. Watch the sun dip behind the pasturelands as you dig into fresh fare at one of the oldest continuously operating farms in America (now managed by The Trustees of Reservations, a non-profit conservation organization). Friday Farm Dinners feature seasonal foods grown or raised here or nearby — think grassfed burgers, fresh-picked greens and homemade ice cream with live music and lawn games. 978-356-5728; thetrustees.org (under Places to Visit)

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: THINKSTOCK; FLANAGAN FARM; APPLETON FARMS; MICHELLE PARR PAULSON

Farm dinners are an important part of our buy-local movement. Often set in a farm field, these unique dinners allow guests to engage with one another.”


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Many farmto-fork meals include meat from organically raised livestock, a healthier and tastier choice.

SHELBURNE FARMS, Shelburne, Vt. Throughout the growing season, this famous New England farm and restaurant hosts upscale, outdoor family-style dinners by its vineyard on the shores of Lake Champlain. The meal, which includes cheeses, meats, vegetables and other products from Vermont farm partners, benefits a charity that educates children about healthy eating and sustainable agriculture. 802-985-8498; shelburnefarms.org

Guests drive four miles up a hill to indulge in chef Ira White’s farm dinners, served in Cloudland’s post-and-beam barn. The menu changes nightly, and everything is made from scratch. A recent entrée included Cloudland Farm smoked ham, confit fingerling potatoes, cider braised cabbage, pickled red onions and blueberry gastrique. Two- or three-course meals, $31-$46, children under 10 half-price; 802-457-2599; cloudlandfarm.com

GLYNWOOD FARM DINNERS, Cold Spring, N.Y. Monthly dinners showcase sometimes-surprising seasonal products from New York’s Hudson Valley. Dinners are often topical, and have highlighted ingredients from goat meat to hard ciders. “They have wonderful stuff going on all the time up there,” says Matt Jones of Slow Food USA, an organization dedicated to sustainable, local agriculture. “I would fly there just to go to that cider dinner.” 845-265-3338; glynwood.org — Larry Bleiberg contributed to this article.

88 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

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PHILLY by BIKE A just-launched bike-sharing program offers a new way to explore the city

hiladelphia’s compact downtown and narrow streets are ideal for navigating on two feet and two wheels. With the recent launch of the Indego bike-sharing program, it’s easy to do both. Indego kicked off this spring with a fleet of about 600 bright blue, three-speed bikes available for rent at more than 60 stations around the city. Bikes can be checked out by the half-hour or through a membership pass. The service is designed to let guests start pedaling at one station and drop off

90 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

the bike at another. “Indego will make it easier than ever before to get around the city,” says spokesman Andrew Stober. “(Philadelphia has) a lot of major attractions that are the perfect bike distance from each other.” So, put on your pedal-pushers and take a ride. Here are three bike-powered itineraries:

OLD CITY TO FISHTOWN Pick up your bike at the Independence Mall station near the corner of North Fifth and Market streets, close to Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell and the National

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Museum of American Jewish History. Make your way about 0.7 miles toward the Delaware River’s Race Street Pier, where you can admire views of the Ben Franklin Bridge or sip a cold one at La Peg’s beer garden, located inside a historic water pumping station. Continue along North Christopher Columbus Boulevard about 1 mile to the Spring Garden Station where you can drop off your bike and check out the funky shops, galleries and restaurants of Northern

Liberties. Or continue another 0.8 miles on two wheels to the Girard station on the border of Fishtown, a working-class neighborhood in the midst of a rebirth.

RITTENHOUSE SQUARE TO FAIRMOUNT PARK Start at Rittenhouse Square, the centerpiece of one of Philly’s toniest neighborhoods. Continue west, slightly more than half a mile, along the dedicated bike lane on Spruce Street to Schuylkill River Park, a waterfront trail that

includes a mile-long “boardwalk” suspended over the river. Pedal north another 1.1 miles along the trail past Paine’s Park, a haven for skateboarders, to the nearby Philadelphia Museum of Art and Fairmount Water Works. Return your bike at the art museum station and make like Rocky by running up the museum steps. Or explore nearby institutions, including the Rodin Museum, The Franklin Institute and The Barnes Foundation. For a longer ride, go north along the river another mile

GET TO KNOW INDEGO Rental stations: 60 Number of bikes: 600 Minimum age for riders: 16; minors must be accompanied by parent or guardian. Fees: $4 for each half-hour; $15 monthly membership includes unlimited one-hour trips; $4 for each additional hour. Equipment: Bikes have front and rear baskets, adjustable seats and automatic lights; helmets are not provided.

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92 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015


to the bike path on Kelly Drive, where you can rub elbows with runners, strollers and picnickers.

SOCIETY HILL TO SOUTH PHILLY Begin at the Second & Walnut Indego station, winding your way among streets lined with stately red-brick townhouses trimmed with shutters, ironwork and marble steps. Continue 0.7 miles to Second and South streets, where you can park your bike

With the Indego bike-sharing program launched April 23, Philly joins cities across the country in encouraging residents to travel by pedal power.

and meander along a carnival-like shopping and nightlife zone that stretches for more than 10 blocks. Or continue on Fourth Street along Fabric Row, which features a mix of longtime fabric stores, galleries and boutiques. Feeling peckish? Keep pedaling about a mile toward the 11th & Washington station to park your bike and explore the Vietnamese and Mexican restaurants and delis that serve as a

gateway to the historic Italian Market on Ninth Street, between Washington and Christian. Or take 10th Street south of Washington Avenue to the Indego station at the Acme supermarket at Reed Street. This is a prime spot to park and eat — whether you want a cheesesteak (or at least a photo op) at the dueling stands of Pat’s and Geno’s a short walk away, or to sample the vibrant East Passyunk dining and shopping district.

HIT THE TRAILS

Ready for a more rugged ride? Borrow or rent a mountain bike and spend the day in Philadelphia’s Wissahickon Valley Park. The 1,800acre gorge has 57 miles of trails. Newbie mountainbikers should plan a trip along Forbidden Drive, a low-lying gravel road that follows the Wissahickon Creek for 7 miles through the lush forest setting. The park runs from Philly’s Chestnut Hill neighborhood in the north to Manayunk in the southwest. Forbidden Drive takes riders from Northwest Avenue at Thomas Road to Lincoln Drive. For more info, visit fow.org.

93


NORTHEAST | N EW YOR K

FRIDA AND FLAUTAS

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ourists will tell you the holidays are the most magical time of year to visit New York, but locals know better — it’s summer that hits the sweet spot. There’s nothing like dining al fresco in the country’s culinary capital, and this summer you can pair seasonal eats and treats with nearby entertainment and cultural feasts. These pop-ups and performances go together like …

94 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

PIANO MAN AND PICADILLOS

➽ Catch Billy Joel, above, New Kids on the

Block or Bette Midler at Madison Square Garden in June, and fuel up before the show at Broadway Bites, just a hop away in Greeley Square Park. This seasonal pop-up at 33rd Street and Broadway hosts two dozen vendors, including Japanese-Mexican fusion Domo Taco, Mexicanbarbecue fusion Mexicue, or Korean barbecueMexican fusion Seoul Lee Korean BBQ. Lovers of fusion rejoice! urbanspacenyc.com/broadway-bites; thegarden.com

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: BANCO DE MÉXICO DIEGO RIVERA FRIDA KAHLO MUSEUMS TRUST, MEXICO, D.F./ARTISTS RIGHTS SOCIETY; THINKSTOCK; BRAD BARKET/GETTY IMAGES

Garden hosts the “Frida Kahlo: Art, Garden, Life” exhibit now through Nov. 1 in the Bronx. The celebration of the famed artist and her Mexican heritage will include ticketed live music performances of traditional Mexican songs, along with themed tastings and tequila. Chef Ashley James of Stephen STARR Events will serve tacos inspired by his time living in Mexico, and dishes inspired by Kahlo’s own recipes. nybg.org/frida


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PARKS AND FOOD CARTS

➽ Concerts in the Parks is a New Yorker rite of passage, and this summer marks the 50th anniversary of the

Big Apple tradition. The New York Philharmonic will host its free performance in each of the five boroughs throughout June — Manhattan gets its turn June 17-18 in Central Park — with commemorative activities each day. Orchestra buffs pack a picnic, but you can pick up light fare at food carts, The Loeb Boathouse Restaurant’s Express Cafe or Le Pain Quotidien, located in the park. nyphil.org; centralparknyc.org

ROSES AND ROOFTOPS The Metropolitan Museum of Art has

on display now through August. The exhibit coincides with the opening of the Roof Garden Café and Martini Bar for the season. Perfect timing! Experience “Van Gogh: Irises and Roses” inside the museum, then marvel from above at Central Park’s blooming flowers over sips, sandwiches and skyline views. metmuseum.org

GRAFFITI AND GARDENS Creative craft cocktail bar Mulberry Project

➽ transports guests from Little Italy to Tulum,

Mexico, thanks to its summer garden pop-up. The 900-square-foot outdoor space will showcase Tulum-themed work by local street artists while serving the full menu (think sliders and flatbread) and fancy drinks by rotating guest mixologists. Naturally. mulberryproject.com ●

96 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

FROM TOP: CHRIS LEE; MULBERRY PROJECT; METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART; THINKSTOCK

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SOUTHEAST | M Y TOW N

ROBIN ROBERTS’

Pass Christian, Miss.

Southern roots run deep for the ABC Good Morning America co-anchor. She retreats to her Gulf Coast hometown — her late father retired here after a career in the Air Force — whenever she has the chance.

— JENNIFER BRADLEY FRANKLIN

FRESH SEAFOOD Pirate’s Cove Restaurant has “the best — the best — po’boys on the Mississippi Gulf. When I was a kid and didn’t like seafood, it was all about the roast beef po’boy with gravy. … Now, I’m all about the shrimp po’boy, dressed, with some fries and a Barq’s Root Beer. It doesn’t get any better than that.” 208 Menge Ave.; 228-452-4741; piratescovepoboys.com

Highway 90 is a main highway that runs all along the Gulf. Right above it is Scenic Drive. It has all these beautiful old homes, and I just walk and run there, farther there than anywhere else."

BEST PLACE TO

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Robin’s Nest in the Pass will open in September. “My mother and father … always wanted us to have a family business. My sister Dorothy does a lot of artwork and makes a lot of the jewelry you see me wear on the air.”

“I love the gazebo that overlooks the water (in War Memorial Park). … My father’s plaque is in (a tree with an eagle carving there). He was a threetime war veteran and a Tuskegee Airman. It’s nice to sit there and see Daddy’s eagle. That’s home to me.”

255 Davis Ave.; robinsnestinthepass.com

Fleitas Avenue

BEST PLACE FOR

BOOKS AND COFFEE Pass Christian Books and Cat Island Coffeehouse “The (bookstore) has a little coffee shop inside. It’s just so welcoming. They have old classics and new books. There are coffee and pastries, and it’s a really intimate environment where you want to sit and read. Plus, it’s got a great view of the beach.” 300 E. Scenic Dr.; 228-222-4827; passbooksonline.com

100 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: DIMITRIOS KAMBOURIS; THINKSTOCK; PIRATE'S COVE RESTAURANT

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Lower Broadway in downtown Nashville lights up at night. Live music venues, restaurants and businesses fill four city blocks.

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Viva, Nash Vegas! Embrace the bright stars, neon lights, dreamers and doers of country music’s mecca STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY FLASH PARKER

I

remember well the first time I heard the song I'm going to Nashville by Alex Culbreth & The Dead Country Stars. It was a cold Tuesday afternoon in northeast Wyoming, all gray mountains and blustery winds. I had been perched on a stool at one end of the long wooden bar at my local hangout, caught between looking out the window and looking at my boots. I hadn’t touched my pint, but I hadn’t opened my notebook, either. The beer was supposed to be my reward for making headway on my newest novel — a sordid tale of a struggling musician’s life in the West — but I had been carrying the weight of writer’s block for weeks. I had not made any progress while working in my office. And even at the pub, with tales of big

fish swimming all around me, I couldn’t put ink to paper. And then this song came on the radio. It was as if Alex Culbreth had perfectly pegged my conundrum. The folks in Music City are known to be as creative as they come. Country music star Marty Stuart called Nashville “a country boy’s Hollywood,” a “place where dreams come to harbor.” Sheryl Crow described the tight-knit musicians’ town as “heaven on Earth.” Visit the country music capital of the world, and you’re every bit as likely to catch a great impromptu rock act at the airport as you are a world-class bluegrass show at the Station Inn — at least, that’s what I’d heard. And if it worked for Alex, why couldn’t I find inspiration there, too? Sounds like I’m going to Nashville.

I used to drink corroded wine till my heart would go numb/ And swallow ink for hours, hoping for the words to come/ But now I’m doing better and keeping sober as I play the bars/ And catching stories from barflies in my Mason jar.” — FROM I’M GOING TO NASHVILLE, BY ALEX CULBRETH & THE DEAD COUNTRY STARS

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TOUCHING DOWN IN MUSIC CITY I give myself away as a visitor moments after strutting into Fido, a busy breakfast hub on 21st Avenue in Nashville’s hip Hillsboro Village. (Taking photos of your food at 9 a.m. will do that.) Luckily, in this town, they welcome visitors with wide arms and great coffee. Anitra, Fido’s bubbly manager, sets me up with a Rickshaw cuppa (a zesty latte made with masala spice, coconut milk and cloves) and possibly the best huevos rancheros north of the border. Fortune seats me next to Henry Pile, chief operating officer of creative marketing company The Mountain, and his wife, interior designer Kate Mills. The in-the-know couple encourages me to spend a bit of time exploring Nash Vegas — an endearing term for the honkytonks, tourist traps and neon giants along Lower Broadway — but to also get to know some of the neighborhoods visitors rarely make time for. “There’s a thin line between inspired and overwhelmed,” Pile tells me. “Finding balance between the glitzy, kitschy attractions and the slow, Southern side of the city will get you closer to Nashville’s soul.” I make space for Pile’s advice next to the camera and map in my fanny pack, then head out for my first adventure in the city: The Country Music Hall of Fame. In these hallowed halls, I familiarize myself with Nashville’s favorite sons and daughters and discover some little-known facts about their lives. Did you know that Kenny Rogers is also a world-class photographer? That Gram Parsons often performed in a custom suit covered in crosses, poppy flowers and pot leaves? And that Alan Jackson should not be allowed to wear frayed denim and water skis at the same time ever again? (Reference the 1993 Chattahoochee music video for a reminder of why.)

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Singer Gram Parsons’ famous Nudie suit, top left, is almost as memorable as the city’s Southern cuisine and live music. After a spin through music history, I go full honky-tonk up and down Broadway, engrossed by one neon hootenanny after the next. I’m particularly impressed with the size of the crowds at the world-famous Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, a place so intimate I feel like I’m on stage with the violinist and guitarists. And I can’t help but crack a smile when comedian Fat Elvis leads the crowd in a stirring rendition of YMCA at another iconic bar, Legends Corner. Thank you, thank you very much. Less than a day into my Nashville experience, I’m already riffing on the city’s energy. And with a bit of country grit under my belt, I decide to tap into the city’s hipster vibe. I spend a pretty penny on a

Parlour & Juke haircut that makes me five times better-looking than I actually am, then skip over to The Gulch, the LEED-certified nouveau industrial neighborhood known for its taprooms, cafes, urban boutiques and excellent restaurants. I pick up some new threads at Two Old Hippies, a funky clothing boutique that has its own stage, then head across the street for a late breakfast at Biscuit Love. I work my way through Karl and Sarah Worley’s southern Appalachian-inspired brunch menu with abandon, savoring the buttermilk biscuits and sausage gravy, treating myself to sweet little treats in the form of bonuts — fried biscuit dough, lemon mascarpone, blueberry compote — all the while sipping from my mimosa goblet


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SOUTHEAST | NA SH V IL L E

and scribbling notes on how this part of the South at once feels familiar and fresh.

MORE THAN THE MAN IN BLACK Nashville has an upstart charm about it. For every Kings of Leon success story, there’s a studio set list with a thousand names of hungry musicians and artists grinding hard to do what they love. Competition is fierce — a new band, a talented singer-songwriter comes every day looking to make it big — and as a result, great music flows out of every doorway. Here, the traditional and the contemporary frequently occupy the same space — at least, that’s how I feel when I’m pulling a pint of Yazoo Brewing Company’s Sly Rye Porter on the first floor of Acme Feed & Seed, a popular “funkytonk” in an old Acme building on Lower Broadway. Soul maestro Charles Wigg Walker grooves on stage while I pick and pluck from the eclectic street-food-inspired menu. The city comes to life from the rooftop bar. The panorama stretches along the Cumberland River over the neon monoliths fighting for space up and down Broadway. On my way back up Broadway, I kick off a Cash Crawl: Every time a band plays a standard by the Man in Black, I down my drink and move on to the next honkytonk. I rock all the way along Broadway and down Printers Alley — as photogenic as any place in Nashville — and into the Fiddle & Steel Guitar Bar where, despite the obvious tourist trappings, I feel I’m getting close to the soul of the city.

Bonuts, top left, are a local specialty made with fried biscuit dough, lemon mascarpone and blueberry compote, just one of the city’s treats.

Nashville’s earthy charisma is stirring. Musicians, artists and artisans laugh in the face of big-city commercialization, while hot chicken hangouts like beloved Hattie B’s cook with so much delicious passion, they’re asked to host James Beard Foundation gala events. (So long as they never go easy on their shut-the-cluck-up spice or tinker with the banana pudding recipe, I think they should cook for whomever they want.) I love prancing up and down Broadway like a chichi cowboy

almost as much as I revel in discovering hole-in-the-wall songwriter hangouts, because that’s what Nashvillians love to do, too. I have barely cracked through Nashville’s rugged crust by the time I fly home. I feel recharged and motivated, and without realizing it, see I filled half of my notebook with novel ideas, and the other half with marginalia on what to do next time in Nashville. If Alex Culbreth ever reads this, I hope he knows that he was onto something.

Hotel Preston: Perfectly quirky, Hotel Preston features the chic touches you expect from a boutique property, with offbeat accents like lava lamps, fish bowls and rubber duckies. There’s live music in the bar most nights. Though, if you’re really lucky, your visit will coincide with tango night; a red rose between your teeth is a must. My goldfish and heartwarming Jim Varney print kept me company on many late-night writing sessions. hotelpreston.com

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Americana is a vibe

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It’s a culture that grows up, around, and alongside everyday life like wildflowers. It’s untamable, with a color and character all its own. It’s eclectic shops, aromatic fare, inspired music, and a Main Street that has won a million hearts with its genuine, sophisticated charm. Franklin is where the roots of culture run deep.

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The BBQ

Queen When writer Annette Thompson smells smoke, she stops, drops ... and unrolls a napkin PHOTOGRAPHY BY ART MERIPOL

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M

y favorite things? Soaked paper wrappings, the taste of slow-cooked meat. Walking out of a lunch spot smelling like wood smoke. Eating with my hands. Now my mama might be embarrassed to hear me tell such a thing, but barbecue — that lowly poor man’s food — makes me drool. Sure, I like all those highfalutin dishes too, but the trail of smoke? That’s where I want to be. While I was raised on ’cue — fast food is a chopped pork sandwich and a side of beans when you grow up in the South — my career as


a travel writer has brought me closer to this delicious subject. Some stories say that Christopher Columbus was responsible for the international spread of what the Spaniards called barbacoa, a style of cooking meat over an indirect flame common among the indigenous people on Hispaniola. The traditions of a party-style barbecue go back to the pre-Civil War days, when slaves would roast whole hogs in the ground for plantation celebrations. Pig cooking would be the one event where the owner and slaves would dine on the

same meat: Owners ate “high on the hog” (the hams, among the best cuts of meat), while spareribs and shoulders were cast off to the workers. Nowadays, meat may be cooked on a pit or smoker, hand-turned or rotisseried, infused with hickory, pecan or mesquite flavors. In the age of celebrity chefs, barbecue is a performance art, and the successful pitmaster an artist. But don’t expect the décor to match the art. You need to be on the lookout for the shacks on the side of the road, belching smoke like a dragon, typically some

The satisfying staple of Southern cuisine is as varied as the places it comes from. Saw’s BBQ, left, in Birmingham, Ala., does smoked meats with white sauce, while Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q in Decatur, Ala., goes for tangy white, red or mustard sauces. Small chain Jim ’N Nick’s, right, does a little bit of everything.

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low-slung building with a stack of wood nearby. Watch for parking lots overflowing with F-150s, Cadillacs and Corvettes, clean and new, beat-up and old. These holes-in-the-wall are where you’ll find your treasure. I’ve sampled smoked meat prepared all across the South, from the vinegary, brined pork of Lexington, N.C., to smoky brisket from a gas station in Waco, Texas. I’ve scoured Memphis for days to discover the best ribs, sampling racks across the city

You need to be on the lookout for the shacks on the side of the road, belching smoke like a dragon, typically some low-slung building with a stack of wood nearby. and sucking the meat off every bone. Last year, I researched my book Alabama Barbecue by hitting about 150 places in seven or eight weeks. I’d taste the meat and fixings at up to nine joints in one day, ordering and talking, chewing and swallowing — and swooning. Repeatedly. In between bites, I’d ham it up with the owners and pitmasters, convincing them to spill their secrets. Yes, folks ask if I tire of barbecue. Well, after the seventh or eighth place in a day, maybe so. But when I wake up the next morning, get a whiff of smoke rolling down the highway, I perk up like Pavlov’s dog. It’s time to eat again.

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A true barbecue platter comes heaping with Southern sides. The sampler, above, at Moe’s Original BarBQue includes beans, slaw and cornbread. Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q’s chickens, right, are split, seasoned and cooked on the pit for 3 ½ hours at 350 degrees, then dipped into a vat of tangy, peppery white sauce.


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Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque put Kansas City on the map as a barbecue town. Sauce choices include Original, Rich and Spicy and Sweet Heat.

LEXINGTON, N.C. STYLE Description: Pit-cooked pork, seasoned with a vinegar and ketchup sauce, topped with slaw Claim to fame: Chopped pork shoulder sandwiches with “red slaw” made of cabbage and barbecue sauce Where to chow down: ▶ Lexington Barbecue, aka the “Honeymonk,” Lexington, N.C., lexbbq.com ▶ Speedy’s Barbecue, Lexington, N.C., speedys bbqinc.com SOUTH CAROLINA STYLE Description: Pit-cooked pork seasoned with a vinegar baste and mustard-based sauce

Barbecue is simply meat cooked by indirect heat and infused with smoke over a long period of time — hence the phrase “low and slow.” But while the definition is broad, the types are diverse. Here are some of Annette Thompson’s favorite places to score signature ’cues. ALABAMA STYLE Description: Pork and/or chicken slow cooked in a pit Claim to fame: White sauce (made from mayo, apple cider vinegar and lemon juice) for chicken, and chains such as Jim ‘N Nick’s and Moe’s Original Bar-BQue delivering Southern ’cue nationwide Where to chow down: ▶ Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q, two locations in Decatur, Ala., bigbobgibson.com ▶ Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q, seven states, jimnnicks.com ▶ Moe’s Original Bar-BQue, 10 states, moesoriginalbbq.com

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▶ Saw’s BBQ, three locations in Birmingham, Ala., sawsbbq.com KANSAS CITY STYLE Description: Pork and beef slow-cooked and slathered with tomato and molasses Claim to fame: Burnt ends, the charred, cut-off tips of a smoked beef brisket Where to chow down: ▶ Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque, two locations in Kansas City, Mo., arthurbryantsbbq.com ▶ Jack Stack Barbecue, four locations in the Kansas City, Mo., area, jackstack bbq.com

MEMPHIS STYLE Description: Pork ribs served either wet with sauce or seasoned with a dry rub; also chopped or pulled pork sandwiches Claim to fame: Dry ribs, massaged with a rub of seasoning Where to chow down: ▶ Interstate Barbecue, two locations in the Memphis area, interstatebarbecue.com ▶ Corky’s Ribs & BBQ, serves up hickory-smoked ribs and barbecue in nine locations in Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas, corkysbbq.com

Claim to fame: Mustard sauce with brown sugar and vinegar Where to chow down: ▶ Carolina Bar-B-Que, New Ellenton, S.C., 803-652-2919 ▶ Hite’s Bar-B-Q, West Columbia, S.C., hitesbbq.com TEXAS STYLE Description: Slow-cooked beef brisket, smoked sausage, barbacoa with salsa and big spareribs Claim to fame: Brisket and sausage reflecting the state’s German and Czech heritage mixed with cowboy sensibilities Where to chow down: ▶ Franklin Barbecue, Austin, franklinbarbecue.com ▶ Kreuz Market, two locations in Texas, kreuzmarket. com

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Wild Ride

Fall is prime time for whitewater rafting in the Mountain State

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shout from our guide to keep paddling — hard f you fall in, swim like hell to forward. the left. You want to stay as With renewed motivation, we paddled on, far away as possible from the extricating our raft from the rapid’s hydraulic undercurrent beneath that grip, some well-deserved high-fives waiting for large rock over there.” us on the other end. So came the My eight-person crew was sanguine advice of our rafting heading down a 12-mile stretch guide as we prepared to paddle of the Lower Gauley, one of the into a mosh pit of white water country’s best stretches of Class on West Virginia’s Lower Gauley IV-V white water. The course WEST River. For a brief moment, I is riddled with more than 35 VIRGINIA imagined myself locked in rapids with names such as Pure Gauley some sort of hellish underwater Screaming Hell and Heaven Bridge Gauley rinse cycle before our guide’s Help You. River Charleston cry of “Let’s do it!” refocused my Fall is prime rafting season New River attention. in West Virginia. The SumSeconds later, we were mersville Dam, about 77 miles bouncing over the lip of a southeast of the capital city of roaring wall of water into a hole big enough to Charleston, schedules releases for this time of swallow a small car. The rubbery raft lurched year, turning 24 miles of the Gauley River into a back out, tossing me and my raftmates around paddler’s dreamland. as if it was trying to lose its lunch. Over the Experienced rafters can tackle the river on clatter of our out-of-sync paddles, we heard a their own, or choose from a number of

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WEST VIRGINIA DIVISION OF TOURISM

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Ways to Taste the Outdoors! Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll run out of time long before you run out of things to do here, from wine tasting to breathtaking whitewater! Our compact downtowns are lined with one-of-a-kind specialty shops, small art galleries, antique havens and friendly neighborhood bistros and spirited pubs. Save the date for year-round friendly festivals; we have your cabin or your luxury room waiting!

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SOUTHEAST | W EST V IRGIN I A

PLAN YOUR TRIP Guided rafting adventures kick off in April when spring snowmelt swells the Gauley’s sister river, the New River. More sedate summer floats are also available on the Gauley. Rent a one- or two-person inflatable kayak for a more intimate ride.

licensed guides. Things peak beginning the Friday following Labor Day, when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ annual drawdown of Summersville Lake forces a steady sluice of riotous white water down the Gauley. For uninitiated rafters like myself, the Lower Gauley is the best place to start, though it’s by no means a languid float. A series of Class IV rapids (considered advanced) provides the biggest thrills, although the autumnal colors and impressive New River Gorge scenery also make this a must-do seasonal trip. While both the New and Gauley rivers are striking for their wild and scenic characteristics, a trip out here is by no means an expedition into the hinterlands. Outfitters such as River Expeditions (800463-9873; raftinginfo.com) offer creature comforts from luxury cabins to tent camping, not to mention a showerhouse with ample hot water after a long day on the river.

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Lodges offer food, music and dancing into the wee hours. Fayetteville’s Pies & Pints (219 W. Maple Ave.; 304-574-2200, piesandpints.net) is a good spot to grab an IPA and banter with the locals. To close out the season, the area kicks up its heels during the Bridge Day Festival (officialbridge day.com) at the New River Gorge Bridge. During the event, BASE jumpers up the adrenaline ante by legally freefalling into the chasm beneath the area’s signature span, the world’s secondlongest single arch bridge. The festival takes place annually; this year’s event is scheduled for Oct. 17. ●

Experienced rafters can tackle the river on their own, or choose from a number of licensed guides.

FOR MORE OUTDOOR FUN The New River Gorge National River national park (nps.gov/neri) offers white water adventures ranging from easy drifting to Class V rapids. Visitors can also take to the trails by mountain bike for panoramic views of the gorge, rides through rhododendrons and visits to historic coal mines — many of which also make for wonderful hikes if biking isn’t on the itinerary. This outdoor mecca also contains more than 1,600 established rock climbs, making it one of the most popular areas in the country for the sport. — Carri Wilbanks

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The New River Gorge Bridge hosts Bridge Day celebration the third Saturday of October. The bridge opens to pedestrians and to activities such as rappelling and BASE jumping.


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Discover Little Rock and North Little Rock. Nestled on the banks of the Arkansas River, with great attractions and museums such as the Clinton Presidential Center, USS Razorback World War II submarine and the Old Mill, famous for its appearance in Gone with the Wind. Both cities share a vibrant arts and culinary scene, and offer year-round festivals and events, like Riverfest – Arkansas’s largest annual arts and music festival – held each Memorial Day weekend.

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SOUTHEAST | K EN T UCK Y

Paducah, Where? Definitely a “who knew?” story, this small river town should be on your radar as a place to celebrate the arts

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ou’ve likely never heard of Paducah, Ky. This small locale, halfway between St. Louis and Nashville at the confluence of the Ohio and Tennessee Rivers, has no more than 26,000 residents. But what it lacks in size, it makes up for in cultural density: The tiny city has more arts and crafts than a metropolis 10 times its size.

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Creative Connection Creativity is the common thread that connects people from around the globe to Paducah. The worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 7th City of Crafts and Folk Art in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, Paducah is home to the National Quilt Museum and the LowerTown Arts District. Connect with your creativity. Take a workshop with quilters, potters, painters, jewelry makers and more. Or simply relax and immerse yourself in Paducahâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s creative energy.

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Richmond, founded in 1798, is full of history from the pioneer settlers, to the Civil War and beyond. With such a rich history, and thriving restaurant and retail scene, Richmond has long been a magnet for visitors.

Richmond Visitor Center 345 Lancaster Avenue Richmond, Kentucky 40475 FREE GUIDE 1-800-866-3705 www.richmondkytourism.com


SOUTHEAST | K EN T UCK Y

MAKE A WEEKEND OF IT Lloyd Tilghman House & Civil War Museum: Tour the museum for up-close views of Civil War artifacts. 631 Kentucky Ave.; 270-575-5477; paducah.travel/visitors/history

National Quilt Museum: Visitors can take a behind-the-scenes tour, design their own fabric or create a quilt block. 215 Jefferson St.; 270-442-8856; quiltmuseum.org

River Discovery Center: Housed in Paducah’s oldest standing building, the center includes riverinfluenced art and music and an interactive display where visitors can pilot a simulated riverboat. 117 S. Water St.; 270-575-9958; riverdiscoverycenter.org

Flamingo Row: The Caribbean-style restaurant might seem oddly placed in a Kentucky rivertown, but the eatery gets rave reviews from residents. 2640 Perkins Creek Dr.; 270-442-0460; flamingorow. com

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1984, are credited with growing the town’s fascination with fiber arts. In the society’s first year, 1,500 quilters became charter members, and in April 1985, the group held its first quilt show and contest in town, attracting 5,000 people. The Schroeders, who were, not surprisingly, quilting aficionados, opened the National Quilt Museum in 1991. They chose to base it in historic downtown Paducah as a way to give back to their hometown community. The $2.2 million facility is the largest in the world dedicated to quilting and sits two blocks from the Ohio River. “The personal passion and creativity of our local artists and leaders transformed Paducah into a welcoming town for innovators and creative people, including visitors who want

▲ Kirchhoff’s Bakery & Deli: The fifth-generation German bakery serves homemade breads, cookies and cakes. 114-118 S. Second St.; 270-442-7117; kirchhoffsbakery.net

Paducah Beer Werks: The new 9,000-squarefoot craft brewery is located in the city’s repurposed Greyhound bus station. 301 N. Fourth St.; 270-933-1265; facebook.com/pages/ Paducah-Beer-Werks/1495024097382221

Paducah Distilled Spirits: Known for its award-winning moonshine, it’s a local favorite. 407 Jefferson St.; 270-415-5368; paducahdistilledspirits.com

The Fox Briar Inn at RiverPlace: This 1857 bed and breakfast provides river-facing accommodations near the city’s historic Market House Square. 100C Broadway St.; 270-443-7004; foxbriarinn.com

O'NEIL ARNOLD; JON HAMBLIN

This unpretentious Bluegrass State community has mighty roots in the art world, so mighty that UNESCO designated Paducah the world’s seventh City of Crafts and Folk Art. It joins a prestigious list that includes Santa Fe (the only other American city); Aswan, Egypt; Icheon, South Korea; and Hangzhou, China. Paducah’s other claim to fame is as the home city of the world’s largest and most-prestigious museum devoted to quilts and fiber arts. The National Quilt Museum attracts visitors from all 50 U.S. states and more than 40 foreign countries yearly. The river town turns into Quilt City USA every April, when 30,000 artists and art enthusiasts descend upon it for the American Quilter’s Society’s QuiltWeek. Chicago can’t claim that. Neither can New York City. So, what makes Paducah so arts-friendly? Meredith and Bill Schroeder, who began the American Quilter’s Society in

The National Quilt Museum draws visitors from across the country and world. Exhibits rotate eight to 10 times a year.


Is it possible to have a crush on a city? A city like Louisville gets a lot of love — because there’s coolness around every corner and a creative, funky vibe that folks far and wide aroun just ccan’t get enough of. It’s in the food, it’s in the air, it’s out on the street just waiting for you to discover it. Get a look at all there is to streets a love about Louisville at ShareLouisvilleLove.com


SOUTHEAST | K EN T UCK Y

Artists work and sell their creations in boutiques throughout the historic downtown, left. Well-known fiber artist Lily Liu has a studio in town. Her work can be seen at bottom left.

Frankfort

KENTUCKY

to connect with their own creativity,” says Laura Schaumburg, marketing director of the Paducah Convention & Visitors Bureau. So where are the best spots to get creative? The LowerTown Arts District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places for its Queen Anne cottages and Victorian architecture, houses studios owned by a talented mix of painters, potters, ceramicists and jewelry makers. Visitors can stop in here during the town’s Second Saturday Studio/Gallery Walk when LowerTown galleries host extended hours and feature new exhibits and entertainment. The district’s galleries also hold hands-on art workshops with visiting artists,

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part of the town’s Artist-in-Residence Program. The Yeiser Art Center holds the annual Fantastic Fibers exhibition each April through June, showcasing some of the best works created from natural and synthetic fibers. The Clemens Fine Arts Center is another must-see that offers gallery exhibits and performing arts events. The Carson Center holds artistic workshops, events and music performances. Artistic expression never stops in Paducah. All year long the city hosts art-related events, including the LowerTown Arts & Music Festival each May; the Master Artists Workshops for ceramics, jewelry and metalworking in the summer; and the River’s Edge International Film Festival in November. And remember: All of this is offered in a rural town with less than 26,000 residents. Who knew, right? ●

O'NEIL ARNOLD; PADUCAH CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU; MAP: HANNAH VAN SICKLE

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MIDWEST | M Y TOW N

MICHAEL SYMON’S

Cleveland Chef Michael Symon’s success has earned him a seat on ABC’s The Chew, a spot on the roster of Iron Chef America and numerous awards. But his greatest accolade, in his book, is being born and raised in this heartland city. — LISA DAVIS

BEST PLACE FOR

FOODIES

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EAT “Sterle’s Country House, an old Polish beer hall with tons of great beers, huge portions of pierogies and sausages, all served familystyle, and polka music. A polka band makes me so happy. I mean, have you ever seen someone dancing to polka music who isn’t in a good mood?” Visitors should also check out Symon’s new restaurant, called Mabel’s BBQ, opening in June. Inspired by the city’s diverse immigrant population, the menu includes Eastern European smoked meats, mustard-based sauces, five kinds of sauerkraut plus moonshine and beer. “Mabel’s is my ode to Cleveland,” he says. Sterle’s, 1401 E. 55th St.; 216-8814181; sterlescountryhouse.com

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BEST PLACE FOR

WEEKEND BRUNCH

Market: 1979 W. 25th St.; 216-664-3387; westsidemarket.org

“Best lemon ricotta pancakes are at the Inn on Coventry. These pancakes are insane.”

Brewery: 2516 Market Ave.; 216-771-4404; greatlakesbrewing.com

2785 Euclid Heights Blvd; 216-371-1811; innoncoventry.com

BEST PLACE FOR

A DOSE OF OUTDOORS “Cleveland Metroparks are majestic, with hundreds of acres of green space to go for a walk, ride your bike or have a picnic.” clevelandmetroparks.com

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: PAUL SOBOTA; THINKSTOCK; CODY YORK/THISISCLEVELAND.COM (2)

We have everything a big city has, including one of the best orchestras in the country, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, three professional sports teams and a booming culinary scene, all without the ratrace hassles.”

“West Side Market. It is over 100 years old and has some of the greatest butchers in the world. And the Great Lakes Brewing Company is handsdown one of the best breweries in the U.S.” What’s in Symon’s beer stein? “Dortmunder Gold Lager.”


 



   

   

                        

    

  

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A tour of the Robie House leads visitors through the children’s playroom, entry hall, living room, dining room, guest room, master bedroom, butler’s pantry and kitchen.

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Just Wright Architecture fans, rejoice. When it comes to Frank Lloyd Wright, Chicago’s got you covered. BY KIT BERNARDI

T

he open floor plan flooded with natural light; the centerpiece fireplace; the built-in storage and furniture — you could move right in. While this home looks made for today’s market, it’s not for sale. In fact, it’s a National Historic Landmark called Robie House, built more than 100 years ago by architect Frank Lloyd Wright. “Often, when visiting historic buildings, it feels like you’re frozen in time. But with Wright sites, you easily see how his architectural ideas strongly influence the spaces we live in today,” says David Bagnall, curator and director of interpretation at Chicago’s Frank Lloyd Wright Trust. Indeed, one of America’s favorite architects has left his mark on contemporary design. And at these Chicago-area sites, representing more than 60 years of his career, you can experience the timeless quality of his work and learn more about the man behind it.

JAMES CAULFIELD

◀ ROBIE HOUSE

On the University of Chicago campus in Hyde Park, this historic home (completed in 1910) is considered by many to be Wright’s prairie-style masterpiece, and an inspiration for American 20th-century design. With steel-beam construction, Wright built a cantilevered roof stretching 17.5 feet beyond the walls. Inside is a sprawling, free-flowing space, enhanced visually with a neutral palette and wood molding on the ceiling. An abundance of art-glass windows — 175 of them — welcome in natural light while shielding street views. The UNESCO World Heritage List-nominated site, Chicago’s first, is open during ongoing restoration. 5757 S. Woodlawn Ave.; 312-994-4000; flwright.org/visit/ robiehouse

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JOIN A TOUR If you’re not up for planning your own itinerary, why not join a guided tour through these amazing sites? There are a few options in the Chicago area. u The Frank Lloyd Wright Trust conducts guided tours of the Oak Park Home and Studio, Robie House, Emil Bach House and The Rookery light court, as well as self-guided audio walks of Oak Park’s Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District. 209 S. LaSalle St.; 312-994-4000; flwright.org u Guided tours of the Laurent House in Rockford, Ill., are held May through December on the first and third weekends of the month. 815-877-2952; laurenthouse.com u Chicago Architecture Foundation offers an abundance of Wright-centric tours year-round. 224 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-922-3432; architecture.org

◀ CHICAGO LOOP

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JAMES CAULFIELD

Set in the heart of Chicago’s financial district, The Rookery has one of Wright’s most dramatic interior compositions.

Catch a glimpse of Wright’s work in the grandiose lobby of a commercial building in downtown Chicago. The Rookery, built in 1888 by local architectural firm Burnham and Root, was updated by Wright in 1905. He renovated the impressive central light court and lobbies — lit by a glass roof — of the 11-story building, briefly the world’s tallest skyscraper when it was completed. 209 S. LaSalle St.; 312-553-6100; therookerybuilding.com


explore Frank Lloyd Wrightâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Unity Temple

The Oak Park Area, just ten miles due west of downtown Chicago, offers the perfect place to unwind, shop, see unique attractions then enjoy a world-class meal.

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MIDWEST | IL L INOIS

MAKE A WEEKEND OF IT Let your interests in architecture guide you when choosing places to bunk down and fuel up. Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel: The 334 contemporary hotel guest rooms occupy the first 18 floors of the LEED-certified Aqua condominium skyscraper, designed by award-winning Chicago architect Jeanne Gang. The wavy, 81-story exterior and chic, steely, gray-blue interiors reflect the scenic surroundings, where the Chicago River meets Lake Michigan. 221 N. Columbus Dr.; 312-565-5258; radissonbluaqua.com Palmer House: Operating continuously for 142 years in the Loop’s financial and theater district, this landmark hotel has housed celebrities (bon vivant and author Oscar Wilde, French silentmovie actress Sarah Bernhardt) and presidents (Ulysses S. Grant, James Garfield), welcoming all into its opulent, fresco-ceiling lobby. 17 E. Monroe St.; 312-726-7500; palmerhouse.hilton.com

This vacation rental in the Rogers Park neighborhood on Lake Michigan condenses sprawling late-prairie-style elements while anticipating Wright’s more compact, affordable designs that were to come in the mid-century. Wright later called the style Usonian architecture. Constructed in 1915 on a small urban lot, this compact home’s built-in dining table, seating, bookcases, storage, planters and ubiquitous geometric art glass windows make it feel larger than its 2,700 square feet. 7415 N. Sheridan Rd.; 773-654-3959; emilbachhouse.com

OAK PARK HOME AND STUDIO The oldest Wright site open to the public, it anchors the Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District in the suburb of Oak Park, 11 miles west of the downtown Loop. The neighborhood is home to the world’s largest concentration of Wright-designed buildings that are still standing — 25 in all. Working here during the first 20 years of his career, from 1889 to 1909, Wright created the distinguishing features of prairie-style

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architecture: inglenook recessed fireplaces, open spaces with low horizontal lines, overhanging eaves, low-pitched roofs and geometric leaded and stained glass. 951 Chicago Ave., Oak Park, Ill.; flwright.org/visit/homeandstudio

LAURENT HOUSE Ninety-one miles northwest of Chicago in Rockford, the Laurent House is the only solar hemicycle home in Illinois and one of only a few worldwide. The crescentshaped single-story house, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was built in 1952 for wheelchair-bound Kenneth Laurent. Ahead of its time, the structure is largely compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act passed decades later in 1990, says Jerry Heinzeroth, president of the Laurent House Foundation. Original to the modest six-room home, designed by an 83-year-old Wright, are the hassocks tucked neatly under geometric-shaped tables, banquettes, radiant-heated, poured concrete floors, the carport, fish pond and 50-foot curved window wall framing woodland views.

Lang House: The luxury bed and breakfast — in a restored 1919 prairie-style mansion next door to the Wright-designed Emil Bach House in Rogers Park — has five finely appointed rooms with en suites, a sauna, massage room and library. Continental breakfast served. 7421 N. Sheridan Rd.; 773-764-9851; langhousechicago.com North Pond: Guests savor farm-to-table cuisine at this Michelin Star pond-side restaurant in a restored 1912 arts and crafts building in Lincoln Park. Owner and awardwinning chef Bruce Sherman creates seasonal tasting menus for dinners served Wednesday through Sunday and Sunday brunch. 2610 N. Cannon Dr.; 773-477-5845; northpondrestaurant.com The Gage: This gastro pub — located in a group of buildings of the same name and designed by turn-of-the-century architectural firm Holabird & Root — dishes out robust American fare bolstered by international specialties and craft beers. The Irish-style dining room boasts sink-into leather booths flanking a stalwart bar. Outdoor seating faces leafy Millennium Park. 24 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-372-4243; thegagechicago.com The Signature Room at the 95th: Atop the John Hancock Center, Chicago’s fourth-tallest building, the fine-dining restaurant promises sky-high city and Lake Michigan views during lunch, à la carte dinner and weekend buffet brunch hours. Sip cocktails at sunset in the 96th floor lounge. 875 N. Michigan Ave.; 312-7879596; signatureroom.com

JAMES CAULFIELD

▲ THE EMIL BACH HOUSE


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MIDWEST | MIN N ESOTA & SOU T H DA KOTA

The Ingalls Homestead in De Smet, S.D., offers a trip back in time. On laundry day, clean linens hang to dry the old-fashioned way.

Little towns on the prairie bring the story of Laura Ingalls Wilder to life BY LISA MEYERS MCCLINTICK

B

edtime has passed and the stars twinkle on a sticky summer night, but my twin 9-year-olds, dressed in calico and bonnets, sit riveted and wide awake. On the stage in front of them, the Ingalls family (well, actors portraying them) frantically fights the flames of a prairie fire. “This is our real American Girl field trip,” I had whispered to my kids an hour earlier, as a young Laura Ingalls Wilder and her family clip-clopped into the amphitheater in horse-drawn wagon. Indeed, our trip to southwestern Minnesota’s

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LISA MEYERS MCCLINTICK; SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM

The Original American Girl


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FOR MORE FUN Visit Pepin, Wis., above, (setting for the first Little House book, Little House in the Big Woods) and Independence, Kan. (the setting for Little House on the Prairie) and tour the Rocky Ridge Farm in Mansfield, Mo., where the Little House books were written and where Wilder lived her final years with her husband, Almanzo, and their daughter, Rose.

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Walnut Grove (population 850) follows the lives of actual Americans, not characters created by the popular doll company. The Ingalls, like other 1870s pioneers, arrived in this Midwest town with high hopes and big dreams. Their experiences were brought to life through Wilder’s books and the Little House on the Prairie TV show they inspired, which aired from 1974 until 1983. The small community of Walnut Grove recreates the life and times of the popular characters every summer, and Wilder fans funnel in from across the globe to walk in her footsteps and better understand this authentic American girl.

Visitors to this tiny town can roam the historic Ingalls Homestead, duck inside a sod house (and) try their hand at farm chores. Hundreds of volunteers, including kids, come together to present the Wilder Pageant during three weekends in July. The performance in a hillside amphitheater includes live animals, fiddle music and the dramatic fire scene that keeps my daughters’ attention. More

than 7,500 visitors travel here every year for the show, which has been staged since 1978. Other annual events include the Laura-Nellie Look Alike Contest, where girls ages 8 to 12 compete to see who most resembles Wilder and her infamous bratty friend, Nellie Oleson. There’s also a museum displaying memorabilia from the TV series, a doll collection and a quilt owned by Wilder and her daughter, Rose. Most fans follow Wilder another 111 miles west to De Smet, S.D., site of the books By the Shores of Silver Lake, The Long Winter, Little Town on the Prairie and These Happy Golden Years. Visitors to this tiny

LISA MEYERS MCCLINTICK; LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

The sun sets on the prairie as De Smet’s annual pageant about Laura Ingalls’ life, By the Shores of Silver Lake, begins.


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MIDWEST | MIN N ESOTA & SOU T H DA KOTA

MAKE A WEEKEND OF IT

Road 20, Walnut Grove, Minn.; 888-528-7268; walnutgrove.org/ pcpark.htm

Ingalls Homestead: Be adventurous and sleep in a covered wagon. 20812 Homestead Rd., De Smet, S.D.; 800-776-3594; ingallshomestead.com

The small community of Walnut Grove recreates the life and times of the popular characters every summer, and Wilder fans funnel in from across the globe. town, population 1,080, can roam the historic Ingalls Homestead, duck inside a sod house, try their hand at farm chores and watch foals and kittens scamper from the barns. Modern girls dressed in period gear hitch a buggy ride to a one-room schoolhouse, where the bell rings across rolling prairie and a teacher is ready with lessons. As in Walnut Grove, fiddle music begins at dusk beneath a yawning sky at De Smet’s Theater on the Prairie. Kids spread out on blankets, spritz themselves with bug spray and dig into bags of fresh popcorn as chapters of By the Shores of Silver Lake come to life, and the present slips easily into the past.

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Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum: The museum blends hands-on 1870s activities with nostalgic memorabilia from Little House on the Prairie. About a mile and a half north, you can wade into Plum Creek and see the family’s dugout site. 330 Eighth St., Walnut Grove, Minn.; 800-528-7280; walnutgrove.org/ museum.htm

Laura Ingalls Wilder Pageant: The pageant begins at 8 p.m. July 10-12, 17-19 and July 24-26. Buy your tickets at the door, and bring your lawn chairs and blankets. De Smet, S.D.; 800-880-3383; desmetpageant.org

Wilder Pageant: Shows start at 9 p.m. on July 10-11, 17-18 and 24-25, on the banks of Plum Creek. Tickets for reserved seats are $16. 11505 Crown Ave., Walnut Grove, Minn.; 888-8593102; walnutgrove.org pageant.htm

▼ Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Homes: Take a guided tour of Ingalls-related buildings, including the home where some of the family lived in their later years. 105 Olivet Ave., De Smet, S.D.; 800-880-3383; discoverlaura.org

Prairie House Manor Bed & Breakfast: Eat a “pancake man” inspired by Ma’s special dish in Little House in the Big Woods. The house itself belonged to Banker Ruth, featured in The Long Winter. 209 Highway 25 South, De Smet, S.D.; 800-297-2416; prairiehousemanor. com

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM; LISA MEYERS MCCLINTICK; SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM

Plum Creek Park: Pitch your tent and take a dip in Lake Laura. County


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J MILES WOLF; MAP: HANNAH VAN SICKLE

The Over-the-Rhine neighborhood has one of the most intact historic districts in the country. But within these old buildings, which includes the famous Music Hall, below, a cutting-edge community thrives.

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OHIO Columbus Cincinnati

Exploring Over-the-Rhine Cincinnati’s revitalized historic district now attracts visitors worldwide BY LISA DAVIS

E

veryone has a past. Even neighborhoods. And none could be more checkered than Over-the-Rhine. Some histories invoke pleasant memories and nostalgia; others are painful reminders of turbulent times. For this Cincinnati neighborhood, the past is a mix of good and bad, high and low. But those tempestuous bygone days are yielding to a promising future, thanks to a commitment by city officials, historic preservationists and civic-minded local residents to turn Over-the-Rhine’s once-dilapidated downtown into an up-and-coming — dare we say it — hipster enclave.

FIRST, A HISTORY LESSON Over-the-Rhine, now fondly called OTR, sits north of and adjacent to Cincinnati’s central business district. It started in the 19th century as a community of pre-Prohibition German immigrants who populated the Italianate architecture defined by storybook-style brick buildings, churches, meeting halls and breweries. Because many of the neighborhood’s residents had to cross a bridge over a canal that separated them from downtown, the area became known as Over-the-Rhine, the canal symbolizing the Rhine River in Germany. Fast-forward to the early 2000s and a much different neighborhood existed. Unemployment rates hovered around 25 percent, and the median household annual income was less than $10,000. Poverty plagued the community, with almost 60 percent of residents falling into this category. Riots after the 2001 shooting death of a 19-year-old African-American man by a white police officer caused millions of dollars in property damage.

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MIDWEST | OHIO

A LOOK AHEAD With changes happening every day, you might wonder what Over-the-Rhine will look like three to five years from now. “Momentum to revitalize the neighborhood isn’t stopping,” says Molly Wellmann, owner of OTR’s popular craft cocktail watering hole, Japp’s – Since 1879. “A few years down the road, we’ll have the streetcar rolling through, making the expanding neighborhood accessible to everyone. More shops, restaurants, bars and other businesses are opening every day.”

NEW IN 2015: During this time, Over-the-Rhine was considered one of the nation’s most crime-ridden areas. And the National Trust for Historic Preservation designated the neighborhood, said to be the most sizable intact urban historic district in the U.S., as one of the country’s Most Endangered Historical Places.

u 16-Bit Bar+Arcade, a 1980sand ’90s-themed bar combined with classic arcade games and pinball machines, which opened this spring. Cocktails take their names from legends of the 1980s and 1990s — both real and fictional. Try the Kevin Bacon, made with Jim Beam maple bourbon, ginger ale and bacon jerky. Or the Cher Horowitz, made with Malibu rum, simple syrup, pineapple juice and grenadine.

In response to the decaying condition and the destruction caused by the riots, leaders in local government and business stepped in to form the Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC) in 2003. The group’s mission: to strategically rehabilitate Over-theRhine’s housing, economy, safety, cleanliness, transportation and quality of life while not tampering with its 943 historical buildings, the largest collection of 19th-century Italianate architecture in the country. “After enduring decades of neglect, these historic buildings that had been falling into disrepair are now being renovated into single-family homes, condominiums and commercial spaces, breathing new life into what was once one of the most economically distressed neighborhoods in the country,” says Brittney Carden, 3CDC’s communications officer. Indeed, the Over-the-Rhine of today is a blend of history, progress and innova-

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The neighborhood’s shopping district includes pottery and bookstores, funky boutiques and national chains.

tion. The Woodward Theater, originally a silent-film house, has reopened as a live music venue. The Ensemble Theatre, located in a historic German bank on Vine Street, is Cincinnati’s secondlargest professional theater. The grande dame of the neighborhood is undoubtedly the Cincinnati Music Hall, located on Elm Street next to Washington Park. First opened in 1878, the Italianate performing arts space hosts the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops orchestras, the Cincinnati Opera and the Cincinnati Ballet. Over-the-Rhine’s resurgence has

u Stadt Distillery will open in summer 2015, the first distillery in the neighborhood since 1920s Prohibition. u A $4.7 million renovation of the 13,170-square-foot former Apostolic Bethlehem Temple Church on Elm Street will result in The Transept, a public bar and large event space, set to open in September 2015. u A new craft cocktail bar with a turn-of-the-century apothecary theme will open in winter 2015 at the corner of 13th and Republic streets. The as-yet-unnamed watering hole will be launched in partnership with two of the visionaries behind Cocktail Academy of Los Angeles’ Arts District.

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MIDWEST | OHIO

The Overthe-Rhine Community Festival brings the neighborhood together every August.

Events

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FUN, OTR-STYLE Plan a visit around these annual events: Cincinnati Fringe Festival draws local, regional, national and international artists involved in theater, dance, music, poetry, visual arts and film. Multiple venues, May 26 to June 6. cincyfringe.com Cincinnati Opera is the second-oldest opera company in the country. This year, the group will perform II Trovatore, Morning Star, Don Pasquale and Turandot as well as a selection of favorites from these performances at Opera in the Park in Washington Park, June 7 to July 31. cincinnatiopera.org Second Sunday on Main features food, vintage finds, craft vendors, workshops, classes, musical performances and activities the second Sunday of each month. Celebrating its 10th anniversary on Main Street, now through Oct. 11. secondsundayonmain.org City Flea is Cincinnati’s urban flea market. Washington Park, monthly through December. thecityflea.com Bockfest is OTR’s spring version of Oktoberfest featuring live music, kegs of beer and a parade. Multiple venues, each March. bockfest.com

For shopping, MiCA 12/v has fabulous wallets, gifts and jewelry; Article specializes in men’s clothing; and head to Pet Wants for locally produced pet food and products. Steam Whistle Letterpress sells handset vintage-style greeting cards. Blocks away is one of the top-rated luxury hotels in the U.S., the 21c Museum Hotel, a 156-room boutique lodging located in a 100-year-old building, the Hotel Metropole.

REBECCA BUTTS

been so successful that it’s difficult to narrow down the list of new shops, restaurants and breweries that now pepper the landscape of this reborn Over-the-Rhine’s neighborhood. Washington Notable eateries include Salazar Park is a favored for affordable, farm-inspired dishes spot for free such as roasted chicken breast with weekly events, including Workout mustard spaetzle, grilled romaine, on the Green preserved apricots and bagna cauda. yoga and weekly The Eagle, located in an old post boot camp in the office, draws crowds with its fried summer; movie chicken. Walk-up taco window Gomez screenings during Salsa is known for its turtle shells — a Summer Cinema tortilla stuffed with hand-chopped on Wednesday salsa, guacamole and other savory nights; petfixings, then folded hexagonally friendly Yappy and heated on a griddle. For dessert, Hour for cocktails and nibbles Streetpops, a specialty popsicle every Thursday maker, offers flavors ranging from evening; and pineapple habanero to hibiscus mint. OTR Performs In a nod to its German roots, each Sunday for Over-the-Rhine has three working opera, jazz and breweries. At the Christian Moerlein more. Brewing Company, people gather in an authentic 19th-century tap room for $5 beers. Visitors can also take tours of the underground caverns used in the brewing process from the 1860s. Another brewery, Rhinegeist, is opening a 7,000-square-foot rooftop deck by September; and the new three-story Taft’s Ale House, located in the once-crumbling St. Paul’s German Evangelical Protestant Church on Race Street, pays homage to local lad and 27th U.S. President William Howard Taft.


You’ll find the world’s largest Amish settlement, Lehman’s, The J.M. Smucker Company Store and Café, The Ohio Light Opera, P. Graham Dunn Retail Gallery and more! www•wccvb•com 1.800.362.6474

OHIO

Where History & Adventure Await at the Living Word Outdoor Drama

visitguernseycounty.com 800.933.5480


WEST | M Y TOW N

CIA CHERRYHOLMES’ & STETSON ADKISSON’S

Pagosa Springs, Colo. Grammy-nominated bluegrass artist Cia Cherryholmes and her guitaristhusband, Stetson Adkisson, are the Americana duo who comprise Songs of the Fall. The roots artists tell us the best places to eat, party and play in their home of Pagosa Springs, not far from Durango, Colo. — NANCY DUNHAM

BEST PLACE TO

“ BEST PLACE TO

UNWIND “The Hot Springs. We have the world’s deepest hot springs, with (more than) 20 tubs at different temperatures. The San Juan River flows right beside them, and there’s a bar in the middle of all the tubs. It’s beautiful and relaxing!” The Springs Resort & Spa, 165 Hot Springs Blvd.; 800-225-0934; pagosahotsprings.com

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There are many adventures to be had up on the Continental Divide (of the Americas). (Hike) into high mountain lakes and (enjoy) many elk/deer/moose sightings along the way!”

“At one of the several microbreweries we have in town! Choose from Riff Raff, Pagosa Brewery, The Wolfe or another. Great locally brewed beer, and great live music.” Riff Raff Brewing Company, 274 Pagosa St.; 970-264-4677; riffraffbrewing.com Pagosa Brewing & Grill, 118 N. Pagosa Blvd.; 970-731-2739; pagosabrewing.com Wolfe Brewing Company, 2045 Eagle Dr.; 970-731-9653; wolfebrewingco.com

BEST PLACE TO

SHOP “Downtown on Main Street, there’s some great little boutiques, antiques and Western stores.” Stop by Goodman’s, which has been around since the early 1900s. 402 Pagosa St.; 970-264-5460; goodmanspagosa.com

BEST PLACE TO

EAT “The best fine dining is the Alley House Grille, that serves the freshest seafood and most tender beef.” 214 Pagosa St., 970-2640999; alleyhousegrille.com

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: MADELINE LEWIS PHOTOGRAPHY; THINKSTOCK; SOULSTYLE; MATTHEW INDEN

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WEST | COLOR A DO

Hiking Back in Time

A WWII relic becomes a hiker’s backcountry paradise BY HEATHER BENIT

D

uring World War II, the U.S. military developed a secret weapon to fight the Germans in Italy’s Alps: a warfare unit made up of soldiers on skis. To ready the Army’s first mountain combat unit for battle in Europe’s most inhospitable terrain, 11,000 skilled skiers became soldiers at Camp Hale in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains at some of the highest elevations in the United States. During two years of training, the soldiers were transformed into extreme skiers and mountain survival experts. The unit deployed to Italy in 1945, and the ski troopers put their mountain skills to the test

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in two successful, surprise assaults against the Germans. But when the original 10th Mountain Division disbanded after World War II (it was reactivated in 1985 at Fort Drum in New York), it left behind training grounds that have become a backcountry hiker’s paradise. About 350 miles of trails circling Vail, Aspen and Leadville have been preserved. In the 1980s, a backcountry hut system was established. Subtle clues remind hikers of the history of the 10th Mountain Division’s rigorous WWII training here. The non-profit 10th Mountain Division Hut Association (huts.org) manages the trail and hut system, which includes 13 huts. The average route is 6 miles to 7 miles

A hiker treks near Uncle Bud’s Hut, which was built as a memorial to soldier Burdell “Bud” Winter, killed in action in 1945.


10TH MOUNTAIN DIVISION HUT ASSOCIATION; HISTORIC PHOTO: NATIONAL PARK SERVICE; MAP: HANNAH VAN SICKLE

Training to Serve The 10th Mountain Division of the U.S. Army trained at Camp Hale in central Colorado for two years starting in December 1942. The soldiers played a crucial role in battles in the mountainous region of Italy, where their intense training on Colorado's mountains was put to use.

9

70

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Camp Hale 82

Basalt

285

Mt Elbert 82

Leadville

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Mt Harvard Denver

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The Sangree M. Froelicher Hut is one of 13 backcountry cabins belonging to the 10th Mountain Division Hut Association. The hut can house up to 16 hikers or skiers.

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Wartime Exhibits If you're interested in history and North American contributions to wartime efforts, plan a visit to these destinations.

The M4 Sherman tank played a role in WWII.

WORLD WAR I For the next three years, Toronto will host a number of exhibits and programs that highlight Canada’s lengthy involvement in the war. The then-British dominion (similar to a U.S. territory) lost 61,000 men, the largest loss of life in any war for the country. Most events will take place at the Fort York National Historic Site (also a major site in the War of 1812) and the popular Market Gallery. Look for art exhibits and victory gardens; the city is also attempting to collect the stories of locals whose relatives fought in the war. fortyork.ca, stlawrencemarket.com, seetorontonow.com The National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial in Kansas City, Mo., will serve as a focal point for U.S. activities commemorating World War I. The museum is located here, in part, because Gen. John Pershing, the leader of the American Expeditionary Forces, was from Missouri. The museum covers it all, from the social issues that led to the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria in 1914 to the Treaty of Versailles, one of the peace treaties ending the war, signed five years later. The 52,000 artifacts on display, along with movies and interactive exhibits, do a remarkable job of explaining the complex Great War. Special services held on Memorial Day and Veterans Day every year honor the 116,000 American doughboys who did not return home from “the war to end all wars.” theworldwar.org

HEATHER BENIT; THINKSTOCK (2)

long, with an elevation of 1,500 feet to 2,000 feet. Hikers can start from one hut at a trailhead and stay at another or travel from hut to hut. The route I’ve chosen is considered a beginner’s trail, but the climb is a challenge — it’s a nearly 1,500-foot ascent over 3.1 miles to the Sangree M. Froelicher Hut. The hut was purchased in 2003 in memory of a gallant staff sergeant killed March 4, 1945, in Sassomalare, Italy. To get to the Sangree hut, I park at the Buckeye Gulch Trailhead near Leadville and follow the well-marked, blue-diamond snow path. I’m later told this trail-scouting tactic isn’t recommended for most summer treks. Most of the routes are unmarked in the summer and require topographic maps and some skill in navigation. In the summer, says Pat Essig, who works with the 10th Mountain Division Hut Association, “there are huts that have official marked hiking trails connecting them and leading to them.” Novice navigators can still easily find their way to the Peter Estin and Harry


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In WWII, the division earned many medals, including more than 7,000 Bronze Stars.

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WORLD WAR II America’s National World War II Museum is located in New Orleans, the home base for Andrew J. Higgins’ company, which built the amphibious landing crafts known as Higgins boats that transported troops to beaches across the front, from Normandy to Iwo Jima. In 2015, on the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, the museum debuts a new Campaigns of Courage Pavilion. Two galleries, aptly named “The Road to Berlin” and “The Road to Tokyo,” will showcase the war’s two theaters of combat. The vastness of the war, however, is brought into perspective when visitors wear the dog tags of an actual serviceman or woman who fought in these theaters and follow his or her story. “The dog tags bring home the courage and sacrifice of the war’s participants by connecting visitors to the journey of real servicemen and women,” says Gordon Mueller, president and CEO of the National WWII Museum. “It’s history that will follow you home.” nationalww2museum.org

THE VIETNAM WAR A favorite destination for people interested in Vietnam-era history is the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum in Grand Rapids, Mich. Although Richard Nixon was responsible for the troop withdrawal, Ford was president in April 1975 when Saigon fell to the communist army. An indelible image from that time is of frantic South Vietnamese citizens scrambling up the steps of a helicopter pad on a building near the U.S. Embassy, trying to escape. That simple metal staircase, along with a Vietnam-era Huey helicopter, the type used in the airlift, is considered the most significant item on display in Ford’s hometown, according to James Draper, archivist at the Ford museum. “President Ford watched along with the rest of the world as those people ascended those steps to freedom,” says Draper. “To him and to anyone who comes here, these steps are an authentic tool of freedom.” fordlibrarymuseum.gov — Diana Lambdin Meyer

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: THINKSTOCK; WWII MUSEUM; GERALD R. FORD PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY AND MUSEUM

Gates huts, which can be reached almost entirely by hut-to-hut hiking trails, Essig says. My reward for trekking 3 miles with a 40-pound backpack is the Sangree hut itself, which is both polished and primitive, and decorated with memorials to the fallen WWII hero. All cabins come with wellstocked kitchens, wood-burning stoves for heat, panoramic views and a porch for watching gray jays and sunsets. There’s no running water and no indoor plumbing. In the summer, water must be collected from a nearby stream and filtered, and toilets are in a outhouse that’s a step up from a Porta-John. The communal living lends itself to the same spirit of camaraderie likely shared by the soldiers training here in 1944. My hut-mates offer me oatmeal and coffee, cookies and good conversation. Fellow guest John Dodd, an experienced backcountry skier and hut system volunteer, credits history with making Sangree M. Froelicher his favorite summer hut. “I find the letters and information about the life and death of Staff Sgt. Froelicher, not to mention the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Silver Star awarded to him posthumously, to be most poignant.” So in a hut honoring heroism, and among new friends, I soak up the magnificent scenery and anticipate another day exploring this storied trail system.


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WEST | T E X A S

Taco

Town

If you’ve always thought Austin was simply the “Live Music Capital of the World,” think again. The city also sports a big love affair with the breakfast taco, a must-eat when you visit this funky town.

C

hicago has its hot dog, New York City its pizza and Philadelphia its cheesesteak. So it should be no surprise that Austin has its own iconic food dish: the breakfast taco. Yet because Austin is a place where the unofficial motto is “Keep Austin Weird,” the Texas capital not only has a signature food but rather an obsession with it. In fact, in another unofficial motto, the city has been dubbed the breakfast taco capital of the world.

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Austin goes loco for breakfast tacos. Indulge the passion with the Jess Special at Tacodeli, top left, or a breakfast platter at Tamale House East, right. The dish varies from restaurant to restaurant, but all versions are delicioso.

JODY HORTON

BY KAREN ASP


CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: ELI DURST (2); TAMALE HOUSE EAST

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End bug

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VERACRUZ ALL NATURAL 1704 E. Cesar Chavez St. and two other locations; 512-9811760; veracruztacos.com

1

The name says it all; everything at these food trucks is all-natural. You can build your own breakfast taco, choosing from items including potatoes, chorizo, refried beans and even cactus. Or try one of the specialties, such as the La Reyna, made with egg whites, spinach, avocado, carrots, mushrooms, red bell pepper, cheese and pico de gallo.

A

lthough the dish sounds like something only a fast food giant would have dreamed up (and Taco Bell did, in fact, introduce a waffle taco in 2014, replacing it with a biscuit taco this year), the breakfast taco actually has deep roots in Austin’s history. “People have been making breakfast tacos ever since the Mexicans established a presence here in the late 1800s,” says Mando Rayo, self-proclaimed “taco journalist” and co-author of the book Austin Breakfast Tacos. Over time, the comfort food became so ingrained in local culture that while most of America’s kids were eating cold cereal or eggs before heading to school, Austinites were munching tacos for breakfast. In the 1980s, food trucks began selling the dish; restaurants, seeing the success of those trucks, started adding the breakfast treat to their menus. By Rayo’s last count, more than 200 places sold them in Austin. Here, he dishes on five of the top spots to snag a breakfast taco when you’re in town. Best advice? Don’t just stop at one. Breakfast tacos are so good, you may want one for every meal.

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JOE’S BAKERY 2305 E. 7th St.; 512-472-0017; joesbakery.com

2

Serving Austin since 1962, this family restaurant consistently ranks among the top for breakfast tacos. Almost 20 choices dot the menu, including the pork chop, barbacoa and Huevos a la Mexicana tacos. Best part? While many places stop serving breakfast tacos at a certain time, Joe’s serves them all day.

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: JODY HORTON; VERACRUZ ALL NATURAL; ARCADIA PUBLISHING

The popular local chain Tacodeli, above, has five restaurants in Austin and one in Dallas. Veracruz All Natural, right, parks food trucks at three locations around the city and serves up tortas and tacos.


WEST | T E X A S

WHAT MAKES A GOOD BREAKFAST TACO?

The Pueblo Viejo food truck dishes up tacos, quesadillas and gorditas, but the breakfast taco is a special treat. Find this Austin favorite at the Sixth Street food truck park.

907 E. Sixth St.; 512-373-6557; facebook.com/puebloviejoatx

3

Although it might not look like much from the outside, this taco trailer cooks up some of Austin’s best breakfast tacos, which is why you’ll no doubt encounter lots of other hungry patrons here. Try the Taco Don Chago, complete with beans, cheese, avocado and bacon, or the Pueblo Viejo Style taco with seasoned steak, lettuce, tomatoes, mushrooms and avocado.

TACODELI Several locations around Austin, tacodeli.com

4

Tacodeli is always a solid choice, especially since it uses locally sourced, organic ingredients as much

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as possible. Build your own or try one of the specialties. For instance, there’s the Freakin’ Vegan, which comes with organic refried black beans, avocado and pico de gallo, or the Otto, with organic refried black beans, bacon, avocado and Monterey Jack cheese.

TAMALE HOUSE EAST 1707 E. Sixth St.; 512-495-9504; facebook.com/tamalehouse.east

5

Austinites love getting their taco on at this longtime family-run business — the original Tamale House opened in 1958 — so expect to queue. But it’s worth it. People rave about the migas tacos, especially the Chipotle Migas con Queso. Enjoy it while sipping a tasty Mexican iced coffee with horchata.

PUEBLO VIEJO; JODY HORTON

PUEBLO VIEJO

There are a few parameters: First, it has to be handsized. “Anything larger borders on the burrito category,” says Mando Rayo, co-author of Austin Breakfast Tacos. And although some breakfast tacos are made with corn tortillas, the more traditional version uses a flour tortilla. The icing on the cake, so to speak, is the salsa or pico de gallo, which completes what Rayo calls the holy trinity: tortilla, filling and salsa. After that, the ingredients depend on your taste buds and the whims of the cook. “The chef’s cultural background has a great influence on menus, which is why you can now find everything from the traditional to the creative,” Rayo says. His go-to includes beans, eggs and bacon, but migas with beans and cheese are also popular.


Alice, Texas

Fish at our beautiful Lake Findley with picnic areas for the whole family, golf in our popular renowned municipal golf course or stroll through our downtown area filled with quaint shops and smiling faces. Take time to visit our museumsThe South Texas Museum and Tejano ROOTS Hall of Fame.

Brownfield Chamber & Visitor Center 221 Lubbock Rd • Brownfield, TX 79316

Stay with us on your way to New Mexico

APRIL Quilt Show

AUGUST Vineyard Festival

HISTORIC TEXAS Seguin was founded

OCTOBER Harvest Festival

by Texas Rangers in 1838 and boasts one of the best-preserved limecrete structures in America.

Quilt Trail • Quanah Parker Trail • Terry County Heritage Museum

SEBASTOPOL HOUSE, built in 1856 by skilled slaves, was inventively designed to “water-cool” the living quarters during hot summers and has a curiously hidden dungeon. 704 Zorn St., Seguin, TX + 830-379-4833 + Free Tours: Thu-Sun, 9-4

The Biggest Small-Town Fourth-of-July Parade in Texas takes place in Seguin! Enjoy fine accommodations, unique shops, beautiful parks, and the historic charm of Seguin while celebrating America’s birthday.

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WEST | N EW ME X ICO

Chili Country What do peppers and sand sledding have in common? They’re both at the top of the must-do list in this often-overlooked part of New Mexico.

W

hen you think of New Mexico, no doubt Santa Fe and Albuquerque (not to mention Breaking Bad) first spring to mind. Yet don’t rule out littleknown Las Cruces, which lies in the south of the state in the Mesilla Valley, between the Organ Mountains and the Rio Grande. Not only does Las Cruces boast 320 days of sunshine and blue skies a year, it also offers a plethora of activities to fill your plate that, by the way, can be as spicy as you’d like. Yep, to know Las Cruces is to love it.

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NEW MEXICO TOURISM DEPARTMENT; THINKSTOCK

BY KAREN ASP


Santa Fe

ESCAPE

SANTAFE.ORG ART • CULTURE • CUISINE • SHOPPING • OUTDOORS EXPERIENCE E XPE XP E RIENC C E THE T H E CITY Y DI DIFF DIFFERENT FFER ERENT


WEST | N EW ME X ICO

SPICY FUN When in the heart of chili pepper country, it would be a sin not to visit The Chile Pepper Institute (chilepepperinstitute.org) at New Mexico State University (NMSU). This is the world’s only nonprofit organization focused on chili pepper education and research. Why chili peppers? “They’re an important

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culinary spice and have medicinal and nutritional benefits,” says Danise Coon, senior research specialist. Flavor favorers and those with green thumbs simply must take a guided or self-guided tour of the institute’s teaching garden (open June through October), which grows 150 different chili peppers. And shop the institute’s line of chili pep-

per products, including spices, salsas and hot sauces. Your next stop? White Sands National Monument (575-479-6124; nps.gov/whsa/ index.htm), less than an hour from Las Cruces. White Sands features the world’s largest gypsum dune field, which covers 275 square miles and stands as high as a three-story

building. Hike one of five trails, the longest being less than 5 miles, look for one of the 800-plus species of animals that live in the park or go sand sledding. Purchase a waxed plastic snow saucer from the visitor center’s gift shop and then hit the dunes; you can choose any hill that doesn’t hit a road.

NEW MEXICO TOURISM DEPARTMENT; THINKSTOCK

The glistening white sands of New Mexico are one of the world’s natural wonders. The wave-like dunes encompass 275 square miles of desert.


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WEST | N EW ME X ICO

The Shed sells freshbaked artisan breads with flavors such as cranberry pecan, cinnamon raisin and green chili cheddar.

Mexican cuisine, often jazzed up with those ubiquitous chilies, of course reigns supreme in Las Cruces. Head to The Shed (810 S. Valley Dr.; 575525-2636; ompctheshed. com), a favorite for New Mexican-style breakfast such as eggs Benedict with green chili hollandaise sauce. For one of the most authentic Mexican dining experiences, venture into what is said to be Billy the Kid’s old stomping ground, the small town of Mesilla. Just 10 minutes from Las Cruces, you’ll find La Posta de Mesilla (2410 Calle De San Albino; 575-5243524; laposta-de-mesilla. com), an icon since 1939 that’s ranked as one of the top 10 U.S. Mexican restaurants. The eatery sources locally grown ingredients and features a margarita menu with 20 selections. Another hot spot

in Mesilla is the Double Eagle (2355 Calle De Guadalupe; 575-523-6700; doubleeagle-mesilla.com). Whet your appetite for the restaurant’s famed world’s largest green chili cheeseburger with a drinks menu consisting of more than 30 margaritas. Wine is another specialty. Located in a historic building dating back to the 1840s, the Double Eagle is rumored to have a pair of star-crossed ghost lovers haunting it. Spooky! “The things they do are like teenage pranks, so lights on and off, sudden temperature changes in the room, even hearing your name called,” Double Eagle’s general manager Jerry Hansen says of the ghosts, adding that a local group with Ghost Hunters-type equipment often spends the night with infrared goggles on. “The things they’ve recorded aren’t explainable rationally.”

Double Eagle has the only dedicated beef-aging room in the state. A custommade grill focuses heat on the steaks to form a charbroil crust.

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LOCAL FINDS On Wednesdays and Saturdays, Las Cruces hosts a pet-friendly Farmers and Crafts Market (fcmlc.org). Here, you can pick up numerous Las Crucesinspired gifts and souvenirs, including local honey — even some infused with chilies — and a biscochito, New Mexico’s state cookie. Because every state needs its own cookie. Dig up even more offbeat treasures in Mesilla, where dozens of shops line a quaint historic square. At the Heart of the Desert (heartofthedesert.com), fine purveyors of pistachios and wine, you can buy locally grown “fruit on the

Solamente de Mesilla is a one-of-a-kind food boutique that sells candy and nuts, salsas and sauces, jams, jellies, pickles and more.

tree,” including red and green chili pistachios. Solamente de Mesilla (2410 Calle de Principal #C; 575-647-4767; solamentedemesilla. com) is a food-lover’s paradise, stocking only local New Mexican and southwest goods such as sauces, salsas, stew mixes, brittle, jams and jellies. Sample the unique creations at a complimentary salsa and sauce “bar” before taking the shop's whole inventory home.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: THE SHED; SOLAMENTE DE MESILLA; DOUBLE EAGLE

AUTHENTIC TASTES


Experience ˆ —“ˆŠŒ žŒ™Œ

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PACIFIC | M Y TOW N

JASON MRAZ'S

San Diego When this Grammy-winning singer/ songwriter isn’t busy perfecting and performing chart-topping hits, he’s at home on his 5 ½-acre avocado farm or frequenting some of these spots. — SARAH SEKULA

SURF “The beaches of Carlsbad and Oceanside. There’s so many breaks that if one is crowded you can go down a few blocks and pick up another one. I’m surprised sometimes that it’s just me and five or six other guys.” sandiego.org

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“Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve has amazing landforms straight out of a Dr. Seuss illustration. There are all these stalactite-looking formations of clay and strange plants that seem like they are from outer space.”

“In Vista on Saturdays there’s a farmers market in the parking lot of the courthouse. Vista probably has the most (plant) nurseries in the country, so a lot of really great stuff comes to this market.”

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I still prefer going to Java Joe’s to test out new material just to remember what it feels like to play music without the pressure.” BEST PLACE FOR

YOGA “Mantra Yoga & Juice Bar has classes for everyone, from beginners to people who want to get their butts kicked.” 5617 Paseo Del Norte, Suite 230, Carlsbad; 760-6553277; discovermantra.com

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PACIFIC | WA SHINGTON

Seattle by Sidecar

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he email made an interesting offer: Irbit MotorWorks of America (IMWA) was reaching out to see if I would test their newest model of a Russian-built Ural motorcyle, the cT, on a jaunt through Washington state. An avid biker and motorcycle reviewer, I, of course, was intrigued. Especially since this motorcycle comes with a sidecar, a rarity for bikes today. I asked my boyfriend, Marcin, to come along. “You can be the passenger,” I said.

DAY 1: REDMOND, WASH. We arrive at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport around 11 a.m. and take a cab to Redmond, where we pick up the Ural cT. IMWA, an American company, employs a team of 10 in the U.S. that includes CEO Ilya Khait. The bikes are built in a factory in Irbit, Russia, but the brains (research, development, marketing) are mostly at IMWA. The place reminds me of a start-up, so it’s fitting that it’s based in Redmond, with Microsoft as a neighbor and Amazon

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nearby. We get a quick lesson on how to use the bike. I’ve been riding motorcycles for more than 10 years, but this is my first time driving with a sidecar. It’s direct steer, meaning no counter-steer in turns, which is what you do on motorcycles. And because of physics, if you turn right (toward the sidecar) at high enough speeds, it will make the car lift. My teacher, David Wayne George, has me practice a few tight turns to get used to the sidecar lifting. The trick, he says, is to hold your direction, slow a bit and lean your weight toward the sidecar — and not to panic. As I start making circles, the sidecar lifts a little. Then suddenly, it lifts a lot. My knee-jerk reaction is to do exactly what I’m not supposed to do: I straighten my steering and I topple the bike onto its side. “It’s OK! It’s OK!” David reassures me. The bike’s heavy-duty pipe is welded on so strongly it doesn’t bend, and the guard keeps the bike from rolling over even more. That’s about the worst you can do, he says. I laugh because I have a penchant for getting into “the worst.”

USA TODAY senior page one editor Andria Yu explores the Seattle region on a Russianbuilt Ural motorcycle with sidecar.

ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF ANDRIA YU

Ride along with motorcycle enthusiast Andria Yu and her co-pilot boyfriend through the coastal towns of Washington


Woo Hoo!

Today Seattle, tomorrow the world!

Ummm, Andria?

Do I have to sit in the sidecar the whole time?

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Day 2

DAY 2: SNOQUALMIE AND SEATTLE SALISH LODGE & SPA The luxury resort looks out over the famous Snoqualmie Falls. 6501 Railroad Ave. Redmond, Wash.; 425-888-2556; salishlodge.com

If you’re a fan of Twin Peaks (the David Lynch TV cult mystery series, which by the way, may be slated to return for a limited run on Showtime in 2016), you’ll probably recognize the Salish Lodge & Spa, which overlooks Snoqualmie Falls. It stood in as the Great Northern Hotel in the series. The location is about 35 minutes outside of Seattle, making for a great day trip. We depart from Redmond, with our trainer in tow for the first leg, around 9:30 a.m., leisurely riding along Route 202. I let Marcin drive first while I take in the scenery from the sidecar and digest my big breakfast of scrambled eggs and four waffles. We reach the falls in about half an hour. The view is a short walk from a parking lot and boy, is it gorgeous. I consider stopping in the Salish for a bite to eat (there are two restaurants — The Dining Room and the more casual Attic, both with a view and a reputation for great

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comfort food), but I’m not hungry yet. I’m ready to drive. We hop onto Interstate 90 for a bit as we make our way toward The Summit at Snoqualmie, a ski resort. As luck would have it, it starts raining. As we climb higher, rain turns to ice and even with a ski mask on, the pellets feel like needles pricking my face. Marcin is hunched behind the windscreen of the sidecar. We pull off onto Tinkham Road, a potholed, semi-dirt trail that winds through a national forest. I’m chilled and my legs are soaked, so I tell Marcin it’s his turn to drive. As we bounce along, I’m in awe of the moss and ferns, which give the forest a prehistoric look. Then Marcin hits a huge pothole and a jolt slams through my back. “OUCH! Watch where you’re going!” I shout. He flashes a grin. We ride for another 20 minutes until we reach a road sign pockmarked by bullets and shot. We proceed to Denny Creek Road to reach The Summit ski resort. Temperatures dip and suddenly, I see snow on the ground. The farther we drive, the more snow there is, until snow and ice cover the road except for wide-wheel ruts. The Ural handles the snow easily, but then David does a U-turn. The pass is closed and we have to turn around. It’s a shame because Summit Pancake House is just beyond the pass, minutes away. It’s almost 1 p.m. and my stomach is growling. After a quick meal at a diner, we bid adieu to David and head onward to Seattle. As we near the city, I see the Space Needle shine above the skyline. I try to take a picture, knowing it will just come out a blur, but do it anyway. Soon we reach the hip Hotel Five Seattle and prepare for dinner and the next day’s journey.


SEATTLE GLASSBLOWING STUDIO

Day 3

The interactive studio has opportunities for all ages to try the technique. 2227 Fifth Ave., Seattle; 206-448-2181; seattleglassblowing. com

PHOTO CREDIT

DAY 3: SEATTLE AND GIG HARBOR Through the hotel, I book a glassblowing package, so in the morning we head to the Seattle Glassblowing Studio. I choose to make a bowl and Marcin a sea float. Our instructor uses a long rod to collect a glob of molten glass. He then hands me the rod, which I have to keep spinning as the glass heats. We dab in colored bits, heat, dab, repeat. The instructor helps shape the glass and shows us how to blow it into form. He does most of the hard work (and fixes my lopsided blob) but it’s a blast to see how it all comes together. After the workshop, we hop on the Ural to head to Chihuly Garden and Glass, a museum with colorful and fascinating exhibits by glass master Dale Chihuly — some look like they belong on an alien planet. Spiraling, spiky chandeliers hang in one hallway; long tubes sprout out of the ground next to plants and flowers in the garden and a glasshouse features a 100-foot-long sculpture of giant yellow, orange and red glass shaped like flowers suspended from the ceiling. I feel like the shrunken Alice in Alice in Wonderland. We eat lunch at the unassuming, familyowned Grecian Corner, and while expecting mediocre tourist fare, we were pleasantly surprised by the fresh, flavorful gyro and lamb

pita. Next, we hit the Pike Place Market overlooking the waterfront. Now, the renowned farmers market is a bit of a tourist trap, but I want to see it. I buy some fresh Turkish delights, chocolate-covered cherries and we share a large cup of hot apple cider. Martial arts fans should know that Bruce Lee and his son, Brandon, are buried in Seattle at the Lake View Cemetery. I grew up watching those movies, and Bruce is an undisputed legend, so I have to visit. We find the cemetery and park the Ural and walk from nearby Volunteer Park. When we find Lee’s hilltop grave, I’m surprised by how low-key it is, but with a beautiful view of the city. After a few more stops, it’s nearly 6 p.m., when we head to the Gig Harbor home of my aunt and uncle. Afer a chilly, long ride, we’re greeted with homemade matzo ball soup. “It’s an authentic Jewish recipe,” my aunt exclaims. “Made by a Chinese woman,” her husband laughs. It is delicious and just what I need.

CHIHULY GARDEN AND GLASS Next to the Space Needle, the exhibit has eight galleries and a centerpiece glasshouse. 305 Harrison St., Seattle; 206-753-4940; chihulygardenand glass.com

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Day 4

5

DIN TAI FUNG The restaurant specializes in soup dumplings and noodles. 700 Bellevue Way NE #280, Bellevue, Wash.; 425-698-1095; dintaifungusa.com

DAY 5: BACK TO SEATTLE AND REDMOND

DAY 4: GIG HARBOR AND PORT LUDLOW GIG HARBOR BOAT WORKS Watch as workers build custom small boats for rowing and sailing. 9905 Peacock Hill Ave., Gig Harbor, Wash.; 253-851-2126; ghboats.com

In the morning, we head to downtown Gig Harbor, a charming fishing town. The community was known for boat building, but much of that has been replaced with fine dining and boutique stores. However, Gig Harbor Boat Works remains, building custom small rowing and sailboats. We decide to head to Port Ludlow to see an old high school friend of mine. The drive along Puget Sound is so peaceful, though definitely chilly. Port Ludlow itself is small, with about 2,000 residents, according to the Census Bureau. Once a sawmill community, it has become a resort and retirement spot. After a couple hours catching up with my friend, Angela, and eating out at the now-closed Zoog’s Caveman Cookin, we continue north to the artsy Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula. Port Townsend is known for its Victorian and maritime charm — and is apparently quite popular. Having not made advance reservations, I find every hotel and B&B booked. The closest town with availability is Poulsbo, 35 miles south. We gear up again for another cold ride.

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We catch the Bremerton ferry back to Seattle. Because we are on a motorcycle, ferry authorities have us cut in front of the line of cars. First ones on, first ones off. Motorcycles do have advantages. After disembarking, we ride about 10 minutes to the Olympic Sculpture Park. The 9-acre park has mostly large contemporary sculptures (many will recognize the giant Typewriter Eraser, Scale X), and a pedestrian/bike path leads to a small beach and Myrtle Edwards Park. We decide to hit one more restaurant before heading back to Redmond. The Din Tai Fung in Bellevue is a Taiwanese restaurant with phenomenal soup dumplings. The food is made fresh, and you can watch the kitchen staff prepare it. Watching them work reminds me of my mother and her sisters seated around the kitchen table preparing wontons for a big family meal. Those women taught me how to scoop up just the right portion of minced meat with a butter knife, fold it into the wrapper, twist and seal it with a dab of beaten egg yolk. Besides the pork soup dumplings, I order vegetable and pork wonton with spicy sauce, vegetarian Shanghai rice cake and sweet sesame paste buns for dessert. This is definitely a must-return. We reach Redmond to drop off the Ural about half an hour early, and Marcin and I talk about how much fun we had. We love the unpredictability of road trips, especially in an open vehicle, and already are dreaming of our next adventure. “I think we should go across the country with a sidecar. Maybe try the TransAmerica Trail,” Marcin says, imagining a trek along the 4,800 miles of mostly off-pavement trail that connects southeast Tennessee to southwest Oregon. “You’re on,” I say. “But let’s get home and rest up first.” ●


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PACIFIC | WA SHINGTON

blown

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away Explore the blast zone and rearranged landscape of Mount St. Helens, 35 years after its devastating eruption BY TINA LASSEN

THINKSTOCK

B

efore 1980, Mount St. Helens in Washington was one of dozens of slumbering-yet-active volcanoes, part of the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ring of Fireâ&#x20AC;? that loops from South America to Alaska and encircles the Pacific Ocean to New Zealand. Then one bright morning in May 1980, restless Mount St. Helens bolted awake. After weeks of rumbling, the 9,677-foot volcano was brought to life by a 5.1-magnitude earthquake, which uncorked its full fury. With the force of 500 atom bombs, a lateral blast shattered the north face. The blast pulverized 1,300 feet off the peak, spewed a pyroclastic flow of 600-degree gas and ash and triggered the largest debris avalanche in recorded history, 3.3 billion cubic yards of shattered mountain that roared down the slopes and obliterated everything in its path. Fifty-seven people died.

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Johnston Ridge Observatory

All this drama unfolds slightly more than 100 miles northeast of Portland, Ore. Three dead-end roads lead to Mount St. Helens — a well-traveled paved state route from the west, and two wellmaintained national forest roads from the south and east. From the west, the Spirit Lake Memorial Highway (state Route 504) — dedicated to the people who died in the eruption — winds 52 miles

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At 8:32 a.m. on May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens erupted, spewing smoke, soot and ash into the sky and blasting the landscape. The effects can still be seen 35 years later.

from Interstate 5 up along the North Fork Toutle River, a valley that was smothered by the superheated slurry. The road ends at the Johnston Ridge Observatory, named for volcanologist David Johnston, who was killed seconds after reporting the initial blast. The observatory is filled with exhibits, films and compelling firsthand accounts of the eruption. Outside, the incomparable

setting tells its own story: The mountain’s destroyed north flank — “ground zero” — looks close enough to touch. The half-mile, paved Eruption Trail provides spectacular views of the crater, lava dome and landslide debris. From the south, Forest Road 83 winds from state Route 503 through the Gifford Pinchot National Forest to the Lahar Viewpoint. This flood plain was created by the massive river

THINKSTOCK (3)

hirty-five years later, you can stand in the blast zone and marvel at the power of nature, staring at what was once a perfect pyramid peak and now looks more like a flattopped mesa. Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, established two years after the eruption, encompasses 110,000 acres of the truncated mountain and its scarred surroundings, a world of both eerie entombment and astounding rebirth.


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PACIFIC | WA SHINGTON

MAKE A TRIP OF IT Stay 58 miles south of Mount St. Helens in Stevenson, Wash. (cityofstevenson. com), an appealing riverside town in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. From here, you can follow well-marked national forest roads to the south and east sides of the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument (www.fs.usda.gov/ main/mountsthelens/ home).You can also visit Mount St. Helens as a day trip from Portland, Ore.

of mud and ash, a “lahar” unleashed by the Shoestring Glacier’s torrent of instant meltwater. Continue another half-mile to the road’s end and explore Lava Canyon, where Muddy Creek tumbles through a slot of slick basalt. A 1.1-mile loop trail leads up and down ladders and across a bouncy suspension bridge, but there is a shorter, more accessible trail as well as a rougher route with some spooky dropoffs. Look for rocks embedded in debris-scoured tree trunks, proof of the deep lahar that scoured the canyon. From the east, Forest Road 99 snakes up a narrow ridge into the heart of the blast zone. You can

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still see a vast swath of destruction where the eruption toppled centuryold firs like toothpicks. Spirit Lake, once a popular resort area, remains jammed with thousands of denuded tree trunks. The road ends at Windy Ridge, which provides amazing views directly into Mount St. Helens’ gaping crater. Beyond the gate at road’s end, follow the Truman Trail (which honors late local resident Harry R. Truman, who refused to evacuate prior to the eruption) out onto an otherworldly gray pumice plain. Lupine, asters and other wildflowers push through the charred and ashen earth, once again brimming with life.

Skamania Lodge: The woodsy luxury resort sits on 175 acres, and features golf, hiking, a spa and more. 1131 S.W. Skamania Lodge Way, Stevenson, Wash.; 800-221-7117; skamania.com

The Big River Grill: This restaurant serves “modern-day roadhouse” in sight of the Columbia River. 192 S.W. Second St., Stevenson, Wash.; 509-427-4888; thebigrivergrill.com

THINKSTOCK

The incomparable setting tells its own story: The mountain's destroyed north flank — "ground zero" — looks close enough to touch.


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PACIFIC | SA N DIEG O

The Spirit of San Diego SoCal’s craft cocktail scene is evolving, one libation at a time STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY FLASH PARKER

San Diego bartenders put a unique and modern twist on throwback concoctions. Craft & Commerce, above, does shaken and stirred mixed drinks. Café 21 takes the yellow tomato bloody mary, center, to new levels by building a whole meal around the drink. Zymology 21 pairs bubbly with popsicles in science experiment beakers, top right. And renowned mixologist Jeff Josenhans makes batches of awardwinning cocktails, such as a barrel-aged Manhattan, bottom right.

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he Sam Elliot, San Diego’s most quixotic cocktail, is complete only after a good swishing in the bottom of a cowboy boot. This bit of important info comes from Thomas Tompkins, mixologist at San Diego’s hip Craft & Commerce. The sharp-dressed bar is done up around the collar in mossy wood trim. It’s a rustically sophisticated joint, not unlike its patrons, and not unlike the San Diego I’ve seen so far on this trip. I think for a moment that maybe Tompkins is putting me on. I don’t see any cowboy kicks behind the bar, and there’s not a single hitching post out front. It takes him two painstaking minutes to punctuate his masterpiece with a wafer-thin slice of cherry. Then he slides it my way with a sly smile. “Drink up, partner,” he says.

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The food in San Diego is as inventive as the drinks. The Patio on Goldfinch, top, serves up creative dishes such as Spanish octopus and beet bruschetta.

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The aroma of the Wild West overwhelms me. The Sam Elliot’s sweet bourbon stings, and the sarsaparilla soothes. Immediately I understand that the libations in this part are of a unique ilk. Cocktails, each an exercise in whimsy and a labor of creative love, are part of the reason San Diego is quietly becoming a craft spirit superpower. As Tompkins tells me, “The craft of the cocktail is not an escape from reality in San Diego; it is an exercise in local experience.” I see this come true as I sip my way through San Diego, and it’s seriously good fun to discover. At The Patio on Goldfinch, the gastro scene earns rave reviews. Dishes such as fresh fish ceviche with chilis and cilantro, or sashimi-grade ahi in poke tacos, can be paired with a custom libation. The in-house barrel-aging program includes a Tequila Old Fashioned (Tres Agaves Reposado + Angostura bitters) and the Storm of Ages (Mount Gay black rum + ginger, citrus, syrup + soda), the perfect little accompaniment for a cruise through a warm California afternoon. I work off a bit of excess with a wander through breezy Balboa Park. I’m a sucker for the Museum of Man (the BEERology exhibition and beer tastings may have piqued my interest), and feel inspired to become an astronaut (or at

least buy a bomber jacket) after a stroll through the San Diego Air & Space Museum. Lost in the throes of nostalgia, I wander down into the historic Gaslamp Quarter, intent on knocking on the door of a speakeasy or three. It’s then that I remember my hotel, the iconic US Grant on Broadway, has a vivid spirit history of its own. The air inside the grand US Grant is thick with history. During Prohibition, the hotel’s Bivouac Grill, now the Celestial Ballroom, was known as the Plata Real Nightclub. The clandestine speakeasy was operated under a thin veil of surreptitiousness — everyone in town knew what was going down, but they loved it so much they kept their mouths shut. Those days of back-alley skullduggery are long gone, and San Diego’s spirit scene is booming. Today, many local bartenders follow the lead of the US Grant’s premiere artist in residence, spirit savant Jeff Josenhans. A certified sommelier and master mixologist, Josenhans was the first American barman to craft bottle- and barrel-conditioned cocktails by way of fermentation, utilizing the beer and champagne method. His first release, the Mule Sur Lie, a combination of vodka, muscat, ginger and cascade hops, turned California’s spirit industry on its ear. Subsequent releases, including


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MAKE A TRIP OF IT Noble Experiment: Mixologists craft cocktails using ingredients only available during Prohibition. 777 G. St., 619-888-4713; nobleexperimentsd.com

After indulging in food and drink, visitors can walk off the excess scouting out places such as the San Diego Harbor, above.

The craft of the cocktail is not an escape from reality in San Diego.” — THOMAS TOMPKINS, MIXOLOGIST

the Cosmo: Reinvented, and a barrel-aged Manhattan, have brought Josenhans significant acclaim in distilling spheres. His concoctions are part homage to the US Grant’s fabled drinking past (think rum running, underground delves that open on the sea and secret lounges) and a nod to modern San Diego’s ever-evolving palette. His deft touch certainly won me over. Working through his impressive cocktails, accented by throwback snacks, I can’t remember a time I more enjoyed a libation. His Genepi Americana is a chartreuse hybrid featuring wildflower honey, more than 25 California botanicals and young bourbon in a blend that is aged

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in Allier French oak barrels. His Imperial Manhattan Rye Red, a Mission Brewery collaboration beer, is a classic red infused with cigar-smoked Luxardo maraschino cherries and aged in the Grant Grill’s US Centennial Manhattan barrels for four months. The art deco whimsy of the Grant Grill Lounge reflects a bygone era. If I could keep my scribbles straight, I feel like I could write the next great American novel within these hallowed walls — there’s an energy here that is positively palpable. I like to think of San Diego as a place where sun-bleached surfers sip pisco and apricot liqueur, a city where cocktails smell and taste like old Western film icons. I love the verve and vigor siphoned into Jeff Josenhans’ botanically capricious Douglas Collins, and I love succumbing to the city’s spirited overtures. Travel is a wonderful way to see — and taste — the spirit of a destination evolve.

Gaslamp Speakeasy: Think of this hot spot as gin-mill nouveau: contemporary décor, small-ish tables and local bands counter cheeky, archaic “house rules” (If you want to approach a lady, you should do so with a drink), throwback cocktails and classic pub grub. 708 Fourth Ave., 619-239-9994; gaslampspeakeasy.com

Prohibition: Highlights include the Scotch Counter and a cocktail competition with some of San Diego’s finest mixologists. 548 Fifth Ave.; prohibitionsd.com

The US Grant Hotel: This National Historic Site offers one of the finest hotel experiences in California. The hotel has 47 suites, the Zagat-winning Grant Grill, the Celebration Fine Art Gallery and quick access to the attractions of the Gaslamp District. usgrant.net


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Cabana Party The Vegas way to hang at the pool BY GRACE BASCOS

A

CAESARS ENTERTAINMENT

s summer turns up, Las Vegas plunges head first into pool season. Nearly every hotel has its own version of a day club complete with DJs, bottle service and wall-to-wall people in the water. Hotel guests have access to the decks, but the real cool thing to do is rent a cabana for the day, you get your own private fun in the sun, and status, baby. Cabanas offer cushy amenities such as personal cocktail servers, TVs, refrigerators stocked with refreshments and, most importantly, a bit of shade from the blazing sun. Here are some of the top spots to hang â&#x20AC;&#x201D; be sure to check on availability and prices as peak times can drive up costs.

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WYNN The Wynn’s 144,387-square-foot pool deck’s 45 cabanas and 18 day beds service four pools and two Jacuzzis, not to mention six outdoor live gaming tables — in case you can’t stay away for too long. The 150-square-foot cabanas have their own patio space around the same size and can accommodate up to six people. Depending on date and location, they are available for $300 to $1,000, not including food or beverages. For a bit more grown-up fun, head to the 21-and-over European pool, which features a DJ and $750 to $5,000 spaces that can fit up to 15 guests. Guests at the exclusive Wynn Tower Suites have their own pool deck with an additional 15 spacious cabanas. Amenities include stocked refrigerators, fruit plates and plasma screen TVs.

The oasis, featuring five pools and courtyards, including the exclusive Cypress pool — an 18-and-over area with all reserved seating — is a nod to Mediterranean resorts. The 22 cabanas around the pool start at $300 during the week and $400 to $500 on weekends, with a $100 charge for premium locations. Some cabanas include a private dressing area, patios and in-cabana massages for an extra charge. Each is outfitted with oversized chaise lounge chairs, an amenities basket and a refrigerator stocked with assorted non-alcoholic beverages.

CAESARS PALACE The pool deck at this iconic hotel is referred to as the Garden of the Gods Pool Oasis. As such, each area is named after a god: Apollo, Fortuna, Neptune (added $100 fee and 4 percent service charge at this one) and Venus. Decide which deity suits you and choose from dozens of cabanas at the main, multilevel pool, and the VIP ones surrounding the Bacchus deck. Cabanas begin at $450 and include two deck lounge chairs, a dining room table with seating for four, and a mini-bar with sodas, juice, water and a fresh fruit platter.

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MONTE CARLO RESORT & CASINO The classically designed lagoon, wave pool and 400-foot-long lazy river make up the pool deck here. Eight centrally located luxury cabanas clock in at 144 square feet, and include room for up to 10 guests and two tubes for rafting down the river. Prices start at $475 during the week and $575 on weekends. The pimped-out Executive Cabana is downright palatial at 1,500 square feet for up to 20 guests. The cabana has a wading pool, six chaise lounges and four tubes for floating, and starts at $650 during the week. Call the concierge to reserve.

MANDALAY BAY BEACH With 2,700 tons of sand for a shoreline, Mandalay Bay Beach is a haven for sun-seekers. But it’s not just the beach that beckons. Guests can ride the surf in the 6-foot waves of the property’s 1.6 million-gallon wave pool or float along the quarter-mile lazy river. Too much action for one day? Just take a dip in one of four swimming pools. The beach’s perimeter features 48 cabanas, which can accommodate up to 10 people each. Price runs upward of $325 during the week and $475 on the weekends. Super VIPs can head up to the five Villas Soleil near the third-level Beachside Casino.

BARBARA KRAFT; GREG ANDERSON

BELLAGIO


GOLDEN NUGGET LAS VEGAS This is one of the few hotel pools that’s heated year-round. Guests can also slide three stories through the “shark chute,” a waterslide that travels through a shark tank. When you’re not swimming with deadly creatures, hang out in one of the eight posh HideOut cabanas, which start at $350 and allow access to the third-story 21-and-over infinity pool. Luxury tank cabanas and gazebos go for $175 to $450.

FLAMINGO LAS VEGAS If you want a more tropical feel on your desert stay, try the 15 acres of foliage at the Beach Club pool. The area includes tall palm trees and a lush garden surrounding the water, not to mention occasional sightings of actual pink flamingos. There are 10 cabanas at the family-friendly portion of the area. The 21-and-over party takes place at GO Pool. Price can include a bottle of liquor and up to three mixers.

VENETIAN, PALAZZO Italian-themed properties Venetian and Palazzo boast some of the most refined sunning options on the strip. The tranquil Venetian pool deck features some two dozen cabanas surrounding its three pools. Rates start at $300 on weekdays and $500 on peak weekends. Each cabana accommodates eight guests and features a 32-inch flat panel LCD TV, a DVD player, a safe, two padded chaise lounges, a fully stocked refrigerator and a personal cabana host. The Palazzo’s pool deck next door offers seven pools of varying sizes, so you can get as up close and personal with other guests as you want. The Palazzo has 41 cabanas that start at $300 on weekdays and $500 on weekends. Modeled after St. Tropez, the Venetian’s Azure Luxury Pool adds another layer of elegance to the outdoor experience and offers 11 cabanas.

VENETIAN LAS VEGAS; RYAN FORBES

PALMS POOL & DAYCLUB Find the swanky pools in between the hotel’s two towers, surrounded by the original resort and Palms Place. A see-and-be-seen hot spot, the Palms pool features 27 cabanas — some of which are “party cabanas” with gaming consoles. Daybeds and lily pads are also available. Prices can start at $150 Sunday through Thursday, $500 on weekends through May 1, then jump to $1,250 for the rest of the summer. You can also make your cabana a charitable effort. Throughout the season, Palms has honored non-profit charities in the Las Vegas community through “Cabanas for a Cause,” with the pool waiving food and beverage minimums for cabana guests in lieu of a minimum $100 donation to a featured charity.

SLS LAS VEGAS SLS Las Vegas, the newest hotel at the north end of the strip, has an outdoor space with a dual identity: Foxtail Pool Club serves as the resort oasis during the week and transforms into the 21-and-over dayclub from Friday to Sunday. The property’s 43,000-square-foot pool deck features 25 cabanas and two VIP cabanas. Also find 30 daybeds and a few cushy lily pads for sunbathers, with daily rates starting as low as $109.

Create your best Sin City experience with the new USA TODAY Travel Experience Las Vegas site. Read about the best hotels, restaurants, shows and attractions. Book your trip right from the site. Go to experiencelasvegas.usatoday.com.

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Modern lines in a dreamy setting, just two hours south of San Diego, set the Encuentro Guadalupe ecoresort apart.

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CLOCKWISE: ANTHONY BACIGALUPO; EDGAR LIMA GARRIDO; MAP: HANNAH VAN SICKLE

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LaWine Ruta del Vino Road Rustic meets refined in Baja’s blossoming country Rustic meets wine refined in Baja’s BY ALEXIS K O R MAcountry N blossoming wine

BY ALEXIS KORMAN

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orget Sonoma: North America’s trendiest wine region is located south of the border. The burgeoning region between the Baja California town of Tecate south to Ensenada boasts brand-new wine-tasting rooms, striking natural landscapes, unique boutique hotels and boundary-pushing restaurants. So, why haven’t you ever heard of it? Mexico has been making wine for centuries, but Baja’s Mediterranean-esque wine country, the fertile Valle de Guadalupe, has been flying blissfully under the radar of most oenophiles. All that is about to change. With bottles labeled “Baja” popping up on wine lists at the hottest restaurants in Mexico City and San Diego, the Valle de Guadalupe is poised to make a serious splash. Now’s the time to pack your corkscrew and go. Just 30 miles from Ensenada — about two hours by car south of San Diego — you’ll find most wineries conveniently located off Route 3 (Carretera Federal 3) in the Valle de Guadalupe, just 10 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean. Fittingly, it’s known as “La Ruta del Vino.” UNITED STATES UNITED STATES 1

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◀ ADOBE GUADALUPE VINEYARDS & INN

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The Adobe Guadalupe bed and breakfast and vineyard encourages guests to connect with nature through horseback riding and a walk through the gardens.

LAS NUBES BODEGAS Y VIÑEDOS Scenic views are par for the course at this vineyard. The owner, Victor Segura, was purportedly inspired by the film A Walk in the Clouds, and las nubes translates to “the clouds.” When you sit on the winery’s deck, it’s easy to see the connection. You’ll take in sweeping valley and sky views

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and taste red vinos named after cloud formations. Callejón Emiliano Zapata, Ejido el Porvenir, Valle de Guadalupe; 646-156-8037; vinoslasnubesbc. com/ingles/index.php

CASA DE PIEDRA Covered in bright bougainvillea and surrounded by vineyards, this unassuming stone farmhouse yields some

big wines. Try the tempranillo and cabernet sauvignon blend known as Vino de Piedra, or the Piedra del Sol (it’s 100 percent chardonnay). Visitors should call or email to make an appointment for a tour and tasting. Carretera Federal 3 Tecate-Ensenada Km. 93.5, San Antonio de las Minas; 646-1565267; vinoscasadepiedra.com/ english/index.php

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: EDGAR LIMA GARRIDO; SEALION PHOTO; ENRIQUE BOTELLO

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more beautiful winery in Baja; more than 60 acres are planted to vine, the modern tasting room serves up striking mountain views and the six-room Persian-inspired inn is surrounded by lush gardens. The on-property stables offer horseback riding through the vineyards. Here, visitors can sip on bottlings named after the archangels, including the Gabriel, a vibrant blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon and malbec. Parcela A-1 s/n Col. Rusa de Guadalupe, Valle de Guadalupe; 646-155-2094; adobeguadalupe.com/index. html?l=eng


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CORAZON DE TIERRA Since the name means “heart of the land,” expect to find the freshest local, seasonal produce on your plate (ingredients are often pulled from the property or within a few miles’ radius). Dishes are creative treats, such as black cod sprinkled with onion embers drizzled in a lemon verbena sauce, with local wine pairings to match — all in a hypermodern setting created from recycled materials. Rancho San Marcos s/n, El Porvenir, Ensenada; 646-156-8030; corazon detierra.com (Spanish only)

JASON THOMAS FRITZ

MALVA COCINA DE BAJA CALIFORNIA Rustic wood tables and a graffiti wall make this alfresco winery restaurant feel modern (it’s located at the winery Mina Penelope). Here, chef Roberto Alcocer whips up homemade dishes depending on what he can grow or pick that day. The lamb is sourced from the property’s own herd. This is farm-to-table dining, Mexican style. Carretera Federal 3 Tecate-Ensenada Km. 96, San Antonio de las Minas, Valle de Guadalupe; 646-155-3085; facebook.com/MalvaCoc inaDeBajaCalifornia

▲ FINCA ALTOZANO Want to eat under the stars? Head to this unique, open-air eatery to experience a menu of modern grilled meats, including juicy lamb and beef ribs, alongside craft beer and Baja wines in one of the valley’s prettiest outdoor settings. Carretera Federal 3 TecateEnsenada Km. 83, Ejido Francisco Zarco, Valle de Guadalupe; 646-156-8045; fincaltozano.com/en

The open-air kitchen and dining room at Finca Altozano have a laidback feel. The menu’s flavorful, minimalist dishes perfectly match the setting.

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Most U.S. car insurance companies will not cover liability for road trips in Mexico. Consider purchasing Mexican insurance, or check with your hotel for a guided tour complete with car and driver.

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▲ ENCUENTRO GUADALUPE Hyper-modern, unique, minimalist — all apt terms to describe these box-like cabins with floor-toceiling windows overlooking the heart of an ecological reserve deep in central Guadalupe Valley. On weekends, the property hosts a market with locally made jams and olive oil that make perfect gifts, though your bags may be already stuffed with Baja’s best bottles. Carretera Federal 3 Tecate-Ensenada Km. 75, Valle de Guadalupe; 646-155-2775; encuentroguada lupe.com

The Encuentro Guadalupe is meant to fit in seamlessly with the natural environment. Luxury cabins, seen at top, have a private terrace and fireplace.

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This colorful, 21-room boutique hotel offers guests a lively on-site restaurant and pool. From here, it takes just a few minutes to drive along dusty, bumpy roads to wineries such as Adobe Guadalupe, Barón Balch’e and Vinicola Torres Alegre y Familia. Camino de los Ranchos 1, Parcela 7, Francisco Zarco. Ensenada; 664-622-4094; hotelboutiquevalledeguadalupe.com/ index.html (Spanish only) ●

EDGAR LIMA GARRIDO

HOTEL BOUTIQUE VALLE DE GUADALUPE


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THINKSTOCK

CANADA

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A Journey to Charlevoix 15 reasons to visit this charming region along the St. Lawrence River BY LISA DAVIS

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tand anywhere in the Charlevoix region of Québec, and you’ll witness the natural beauty. From the tree-covered mountains to the green fields dotted with wildflowers, rocky shores of the St. Lawrence River to the jaw-dropping sea life, it’s no wonder it’s been classified a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Charlevoix is also a culinary destination prized for artisanal cheeses, smoked salmon and chocolates. More than 40 farms, mills and breweries open their doors for tastings and tours. Here are 15 factors that will charm you to this amazing region:

farmers | 1 | Local and restaurateurs along the Flavour Trail, which starts at the village Petite-Rivière-St.-Francois and ends at the town La Malbaie, open their doors to visitors to sample ciders, artisan cheeses and beers, smoked meats and fine chocolates, all locally made.

longest fjord in eastern Canada. of the most | 3 | One panoramic roads in North America, the River Road (Route 362), links the mountains and waterways between Baie-St.-Paul and La Malbaie. Come for a Sunday drive along the shorelines and rolling mountains. You won’t regret it!

Taste it during a guided tour of the Baie-St.-Paul boutique. It’s usually open any day of the week, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the summer.

THINKSTOCK; FROM LEFT: OMERTO; THINKSTOCK; CIRQUETOURISME DU SOLEILCHARLEVOIX; OMERTO; CIRQUE DU SOLEIL

birthplace of | 5 | The Le Cirque du Soleil

world’s largest | 2 | The mammal, the blue whale, is a regular visitor to Charlevoix’s coastline. At more than 140 tons, the animal is a sight to behold. Wildlife spottings also include minke, humpback, beluga and fin whales. Sail the waters in the summer inside the Parc Marin Saguenay-St.-Laurent to get up close and personal with whales, seals and the

world’s first | 4 | The tomato aperitif is produced here at Omerto. Owner Pascal Miche uses a secret family recipe developed by his greatgrandfather, who first created the tomato-based liqueur in Belgium in 1938.

and a favorite spot for art lovers, the cultural village of Baie-St.-Paul is one of Québec’s oldest towns. Its charming narrow streets are lined with art galleries and museums. Tip: Find a shop that sells local cider from producer Pedneault and indulge with a glass. think | 6 | Historians Charlevoix sits inside a valley created by a 15 billion-ton meteor that struck Earth millions of years ago. The impact

The coastline of the St. Lawrence River offers beautiful views and beaches. The waterway flows northeast from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean.

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The historic Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu is located in the scenic town of La Malbaie and looks like something out of a fairytale.

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left a 35-mile-wide crater in what is today the village Les Éboulements, halfway between Baie-St.-Paul and La Malbaie. Tip: Take a guided crater trek with Randonnées Nature-Charlevoix. Or hop a helicopter for a glimpse of the area’s wilderness parks and crater. of Québec’s | 7 | One last covered

Charlevoix

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bridges — built in 1926 as a way to cross Rivière du Bras du Nord-Ouest — is still standing and open for visitors in summer. Located near the village of St.-Placide, de-Charlevoix, the bridge has an elaborate architecture just begging to be photographed.

Musée de | 8 | The Charlevoix in La

can be reached by ferries departing from the village of St.-Joseph-de-la-Rive. Come ashore to learn about the island’s history, visit the Apple Museum, a temple to cider, or rent a bike to cycle along the 14-mile path circling the island.

Malbaie’s Pointe-au-Pic sector is considered the leading folk art museum in Québec. The museum has a large collection of paintings and sculptures by Charlevoix artists who were attracted to the region’s amazing landscape.

of the most | 10 | One scenic, long-

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The historic Isle-aux-Coudres, discovered and named in 1535 by Jacques Cartier,

distance wilderness trails can be found here. The backcountry La Traversée de Charlevoix covers more than 65 miles and

MAP: HANNAH VAN SICKLE; FROM TOP: CHRIS SANCHEZ; MUSÉE DE CHARLEVOIX; TOURISME CHARLEVOIX

CANADA


...

Speechless? We don’t blame you. Whether it’s your first time or 500th, the power and beauty of Niagara Falls always leaves you looking for words. Luckily, you’ll have plenty of time to find them exploring Ontario’s Niagara Parks. From the thundering waters of Journey Behind the Falls and White Water Walk, to the serenity of the Butterfly Conservatory, Botanical Gardens, and Niagara Glen nature trails. Enjoy our award-winning golf courses and storied heritage sites in between, and then savour it all with our artisan restaurants, showcasing the amazing flavours of the Niagara region.

Want to see the Big Picture of Niagara Parks? Start by telling us your Niagara Parks Story today! NiagaraParks.com/BigPic #NiagaraParksBigPic


CANADA

Le Massif de Charlevoix transports passengers from Québec City up the shore of the St. Lawrence River, stopping in coastal villages along the way.

| 11 |

The familyrun Laiterie Charlevoix in Baie-St.-Paul has produced fine cheeses since 1948. Sample aged cheddars and soft cheeses at the on-site store.

eco-friendly | 12 | The HÔtel La Ferme, owned by Le Cirque du Soleil co-founder Daniel Gauthier, has relaxing outdoor thermal baths,

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farm-to-fork dining and a Sunday farmers market come summer. For a truly unique experience, take the luxury train, Le Massif de Charlevoix, from Québec City to the hotel.

Art Museum and then have lunch at Orange Bistro, known for its mushroomtopped poutine with gravy, French fries and cheese curds.

winter, Le | 13 | InMassif de Charlevoix ski resort is the place to be. Don’t ski? No problem. You can still enjoy the mountain. Ride a snow taxi up to the summit and glide down a 4.5-mile trail in a traditional, wooden Austrian-style sled, or go head-first down the mountain on a luge-like steel sled. more | 14 | Visitors interested in art than adventure can tour Baie-St.-Paul’s Contemporary

| 15 | Adventurous visitors can do a two-hour kayaking tour along the Gouffre River, which flows through the center of Baie-St.-Paul. Really adventurous visitors can pair a kayaking excursion with a canyon hike down the rushing ravine of Chute à Cimon in St.-Joseph-de-la-Rive. ●

LUXURY ON RAILS One scenic way to arrive in Charlevoix is by the luxury train Le Massif de Charlevoix. The train runs 87 miles from Québec City via BaieSt.-Paul to the town of La Malbaie. Owned by Daniel Gauthier, co-founder of Le Cirque du Soleil, the train features booth-style tables with large windows that provide a view of the misty river coast on one side and mountainside villages with silver-steeple stone churches on the other. There are iPads at each table to display updated route maps and videos orchestrated to match the attactions rolling by the window. lemassif.com

FROM TOP: TOURISME CHARLEVOIX (2); HÔTEL LA FERME

summits up to more than 3,000 feet. Plan to spend three days exploring the full trail.


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PHOTO CREDIT

CARIBBEAN

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Tropic Wonder It’s just a hop, skip and jump from U.S. soil to paradise STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY FLASH PARKER

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urks and Caicos Islands are something of a Caribbean greatest hits collection. Foodies can go wild here on culinary excursions. Explorers can peek beneath the sea at what is claimed to be the world’s third-largest barrier reef system; a nautical playground characterized by staghorn, brain and 60 other types of coral. And beach lovers can find paradisal views — and a potent cocktail — everywhere they turn. The islands, located about 600 miles southeast of Miami in the Atlantic Ocean, are quintessentially Caribbean. Whether you’re enjoying sundown with a rum flight and cracked conch, or embracing the blissful silence of an underwater dive, each experience adds a track to your tropical playlist. North Caicos Middle Caicos

Providenciales

East Caicos

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West Caicos

TURKS & CAICOS ISLANDS

South Caicos Cockburn Town

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INDULGING APPETITES The only thing sweeter than the lilt of the sea breeze whistling through the palm fronds is my cocktail — a proprietary blend of rum, coconut water, lime juice and Angostura bitters. The heady mix serves as the perfect accompaniment to a meal at Parallel23 in the Regent Palms, Providenciales, and sets the stage for chef Lauren Callighen’s signature Caicos grouper, a marinated tender cut of fresh fish underscored by a chickpea puree and Moroccan fumet. Callighen’s menu is a celebration of local ingredients and a showcase for her elegantly simple style. Pan-seared jumbo scallops are paired with spinach truffle risotto. Roasted sea bass shares rarefied plate space with pepper foam and red pepper confit. This is Caribbean culinary theater the way it should be — unpretentious, locally inspired and thoroughly delicious. From beachside tuna tacos at the Regent Palms’ Plunge, to lobster pasta at local favorite Baci Ristorante, to the finest shrimp satay I’ve ever sampled at Coco Bistro (tucked into a private garden sanctuary that feels like a luxurious jungle), Turks’ cuisine is a legitimate gastro dreamscape, with experiences ranging from fine French dining to rustic Caribbean. I’ll certainly never forget my evening at the Island Fish Fry, a nostalgic affair that plays like something of a tourist jamboree. More than a dozen food vendors pop up in The Bight Park every Thursday around 5:30 p.m. — some are one-off operations, and others are shingles of established island restaurants such as Uncle Dough’s Salad Bar and Bugaloo’s Conch Crawl. I pick and browse until I find the perfect plate of lobster mac ’n’ cheese and a fresh coconut evened off with rum, then settle onto a park bench. The Sea Breeze Rip Saw Band brings the outdoor dance floor to life as tourists cut a rug with Henry the Conch snail, the island’s larger-than-life mascot.

GOING DEEP Providenciales, the most well-known island and tourist hub and affectionately known as Provo, is home to

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With breathtaking underwater views and signature Caribbean flavors, Turks and Caicos is a quintessential island getaway.

numerous terrestrial attractions, but one of the biggest draws has always been the ocean. Home to coral, rays, sharks, rare fish species, turtles and more, the island’s deep-blue passages also claim humpback whales and dolphins during the winter months. One of the most underrated aspects of the water world surrounding Turks and Caicos is that it’s accessible to everyone. Both hardcore divers and first-time snorkelers can experience the best of the sea without much effort. I motor out over the ocean with a crew from Dive Provo and sink beneath the waves with a professional, enthusiastic bunch. When I spot a 10foot tiger shark at our French Cay hot spot, I can’t tell who is most excited.

What I enjoy most about this patient, attentive crew is their willingness to lose themselves in the adventure; so many Caribbean dive operators want to show off the big animals that they overlook an entire kingdom of tiny creatures. But with Dive Provo, we get a bit of face time with horse-eye jack fish, barrel sponges, triton’s trumpet sea snails and dozens of other wild sea critters that fish nerds like me love. I’d scuba dive all day, but I know I should spend a bit of time on the fat end of a snorkel, too, so I head to nearby Smith’s Reef, where I find a smiling barracuda and a giant moray eel, who doesn’t much like the cut of my jib.


CARIBBEAN

Long Bay Beach on the east coast of Providenciales has the country’s signature white sand but without the crowds.

BEACHING IT If Grace Bay is the island’s (relatively) busy beach, then stunning Long Bay Beach on Provo’s southeastern elbow is where tranquility truly reigns. Called one of the favorite spots of the “top international islands for beaches” by Condé Nast Traveler, this beautiful bow of sand, flanked by rows of picturesque palm trees, buttresses an endlessly shallow sea. After wading out for what feels like miles, the water hardly reaches my waist. Long Bay has earned a fair bit of acclaim as one of the Caribbe-

an’s top kite-surfing destinations, but it also lures beach bums from across the island with the promise of sparkling sand and chill vibes. That tune may change when The Shore Club opens late in 2015. The project, by developer Stan Hartling, will transform 820 feet of pristine beachfront into a premiere resort destination. But for now, the beach is the perfect place to unwind in the salty sea air and listen to the sounds of the Caribbean drift over uninterrupted expanses of white sand, backed by softly lapping ocean waves.

TRIP PLANNER The Regent Palms: Just steps away from the sapphire waters of Grace Bay, The Regent Palms Turks & Caicos resort is one of the Caribbean’s best-kept secrets. Grace Bay Beach, Princess Dr., Providenciales; 649-946-8666; regentpalmstci.com

Dive Provo: Owned and operated by Alan and Clare Jardine, both with more than 30 years of dive industry experience, Dive Provo is dedicated to providing guests with convenient, trouble-free diving. Complimentary pickups are offered from Grace Bay resorts, and from pickup to dropoff, the Provo staff does its best to make sure you have a good time. All are experienced, qualified diving professionals who love the ocean and want to show you the best of Turks and Caicos scuba. Grace Bay Rd.; 649-946-5040; diveprovo.com The Regent Spa: The spiritual hub of the Regent Palms. The zareeba treatment is a unique cleansing ritual of local origin that seats guests inside a “protected enclosure” with a herbal detoxification blend — but saying more would spoil the joy and mystery of one of the most unique spa experiences you’ll ever have. Grace Bay Beach, Princess Dr., Providenciales; 649-946-8666; regentpalmstci.com/spa-and-fitness/overview

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CRUISES

Fitness Fleet Wellness cruises hold the promise of healthy cuisine and fun workouts

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BY FRAN GOLDEN

ou donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to gorge at the buffet and otherwise overindulge on a cruise. There are plenty of ways to focus on health and wellness while traveling the high seas. Nowadays, cruise ships have expansive fitness centers where you can get a decent workout and take fun classes. Many also have topflight spas and healthy cuisine options, plus outdoor areas where you can jog or walk. But some cruises go a step further, tapping the mind, body and soul realm. Check out these wellness options and plan a holistic holiday at sea.

PRINCESS CRUISES

Princess Cruises offers an onboard fitness program with nutritional counseling, group yoga classes and more.

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WELLNESS ON THE DANUBE Cruise the Danube with Avalon Waterways on a health-focused, 13-day itinerary from Budapest to Prague (including hotel stays), embarking July 1, 2015. The cruise on the Avalon Illumination includes yoga and Pilates sessions on the sun deck and lectures on healthy lifestyle, by Suzanne Florence, a longtime certified fitness professional and Yoga Alliance certified mind-body instructor. avalonwaterways.com

YOGI, AHOY!

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: DAVID MARTINEZ/CRYSTAL CRUISES; PRINCESS CRUISES; JOHN AMATUCCI/AVALON WATERWAYS

Sailing line Star Clippers puts the focus on yoga in 2015. World-class instructor Christel Vollmer — who has stretched with stars like Madonna and Sting — will be onboard the Star Flyer in the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain in August. All classes are complimentary, open to beginners as well as advanced yogis, and take place on deck under the ships’ billowing sails. The instructors will also lecture on the philosophy of yoga and give advice for practice at home. starclippers.com

Many cruise lines, including, clockwise, Crystal Cruises, Princess Cruises and Avalon Waterways offer exercise.

ONBOARD OM The well-being focus on Crystal ships includes feng shui-inspired spas, yoga and tai chi classes (on select voyages) and an outdoor walking program using weighted vests. The luxury line brings on lecturers from the Cleveland Clinic for wellness seminars and “Meet the Doctor” sessions. A new program offers the shore excursion option of Site Running tours — to see, for instance, fall foliage in Acadia National Park in Maine. Crystal Cruise passengers can also do tai chi with a master or participate in the line’s Walk on Water (WOW) program, burning calories walking the promenade while wearing a weighted vest. crystalcruises.com

VEGAN VACATION Eat healthy and learn recipes during cooking demonstrations by vegan

chefs on this one-week, vegan-focused theme cruise on Holland America Line’s Westerdam, embarking Sept. 19 for Alaska. The Vegan Vacation at Sea includes private parties and social events, as well as vegan-only shore excursions. vegancruiseplanners.com

ZUMBA BEAT Princess Cruises was one of the first lines to offer Zumba fitness classes at sea. Instructors provide complimentary 30-minute to 45-minute classes poolside or in a specialty dance club on selected vessels. Other options include TRX Suspension classes and Tour de Cycle, a spinning course themed on the Tour de France. You can also get a workout on the jogging track — which on the new Royal Princess has two lanes and boasts an outdoor exercise circuit. princess.com

EXPERIENCE CRUISE

EXTREME SPORTS On the newest Norwegian Cruise Line ships, fitness addicts can go wild with college-size basketball courts, Spider Web climbing cages, bungee trampolines and rappelling walls (on Norwegian Epic). Indoors, the line offers such nouveau offerings as TRX Suspension training, Black-Light Spinning classes and the opportunity to workout against an avatar. ncl.com

WATER WORKOUT There are gyms onboard Windstar Cruises’ ships, but the main fitness attraction is water activities that you can do from the ships’ own watersports platforms. Options include kayaking, windsurfing, waterskiing and more. The Wind Surf even has a water trampoline for bounce-ersize. windstarcruises.com

Create your best cruise vacation yet with the new USA TODAY Travel Experience Cruise site. Read about accommodations, shows and attractions, and book your trip right from the site. Go to experiencecruise.usatoday.com.

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A Bucket List for Fans Offbeat destinations entice lovers of the game

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BY JIM DILLON

PHOTO CREDIT

JONATHAN DANIEL/ALLSPORT

any people combine their love of sports with travel, stopping while on the road to idolize football heroes at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, or take in a Chicago Cubs game at historic Wrigley Field. But there are plenty of offbeat sites that die-hard fans of baseball and football should know about. Here are a few to check off your scorecard.

While many fans plan visits to iconic ballparks and hallof-fame museums, some destinations go beyond the norm for diehard devotees.

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Rickwood Field opened in August 1910, and some of the greatest players in baseball history dazzled on the diamond. Reggie Howard, above, is a former Negro Leaguer who played on the field, which has been preserved as a sort of living museum to America’s pastime.

BASEBALL Rickwood Field in Birmingham, Ala., is the oldest existing professional baseball park in the U.S. Built in 1910 by industrialist and Birmingham Barons team owner Rick Woodward, the field has played host to such legendary players as Ty Cobb, Christy Mathewson and Dizzy Dean; its popular Negro League team, the Black Barons, won two pennants. Since 1992, the Friends of Rickwood have been gradually restoring the ballpark to its original state. Today, this working museum is on

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the National Register of Historic Places and hosts more than 200 games per year, including the annual Rickwood Classic, a minor league throwback game about to celebrate its 20th year, in which both teams wear period uniforms. The vintage feel of the park — with its drop-in scoreboard, retro outfield advertising signs and gazebo-like press box — gives fans the sense they’ve stepped back in time to an earlier era of the great American game. 1137 Second Ave., Birmingham, Ala.; 205-458-8161; rickwoodfield.com

Louisville Slugger baseball bats have been made in this Kentucky city since 1884. The 120-foot-tall bat leaning against the building identifies the site. On the factory tour, you can watch how raw wood is transformed into a bat. The museum displays bats used by such greats as Babe Ruth, Johnny Bench and Cal Ripken Jr., as well as a wall of famous and famous-to-fans signatures burned into Louisville Sluggers over the years. 800 W. Main St., Louisville; 877-775-8443; sluggermuseum.com

FOOTBALL On Oct. 3, 1920, Triangle Park in Dayton, Ohio, hosted the first game of what would become the National Football League. The game pitted the Dayton Triangles against the Columbus Panhandles. Both teams were among

HISTORIC PHOTO: COURTESY OF RICKWOOD FIELD; BILL CHAMPAN

ALSO WORTH A VISIT: LOUISVILLE SLUGGER MUSEUM AND FACTORY


Come Explore With Us! There is a place where the wild woods grow, the rivers wander, grasslands meet bluffs and rolling hills turn amber in fall. It is a place to live, work and raise a family...where people privately vacation outside their own back doors. This is not an imagined place, it is Allamakee County.

HOME TO THE MOST SCENIC BYWAY IN IOWA â&#x20AC;&#x201C; EFFIGY MOUNDS NATIONAL PARK Discover the treasurers of any one of our communities: Dorchester, Harpers Ferry, Lansing, New Albin, Postville, Waterville and Waukon Free guide can be obtained by calling or e-mailing;

        

ALLAMAKEE ECO N O M I C DEVELOPMENT

& TO URI SM

Call or Email us for your free copy of our Regional Visitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Guide Call or Email us today for your free copy of our Regional Visitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Guide

Glacial Lakes & Prairies Tourism Association     s www.sdglaciallakes.com

For an Affordable Getaway, Look to these FREE Crawford County Attractions. Pittsburg State University Veterans Memorial Amphitheater, Pittsburg

Cato Historical School House, Cato

Minersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Hall Museum, Franklin

Cruise the

Missouri River Mined Land Wildlife Area, Pittsburg

Lewis and Clark Riverboat

Bismarck North Dakota www.lewisandclarkriverboat.com

Crawford County Historical Museum, Pittsburg

1.800.879.1112 | VisitCrawfordCounty.com

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SPORTS TRAVEL

224 GO ESCAPE | SUMMER 2015

served as a football field and imagine how two teams of hardy men played that first game. At nearby Carillon Historical Park, you can walk through the Triangles’ refurbished locker room and purchase Triangles team T-shirts. Deweese Parkway and Ridge Avenue, Dayton, Ohio ALSO WORTH A VISIT: JIM THORPE MEMORIAL IN JIM THORPE, PA.

Jim Thorpe was an outstanding athlete and one of the first great players of professional football as well as one of the founding members of the NFL. Thorpe, who was of Native American and European descent, became a legend in the early 20th century by winning the grueling decathlon and

Historic photos and memorabilia from the Dayton Triangles football team.

pentathlon events at the 1912 Olympics and playing Major League Baseball and professional football at the same time. But Thorpe struggled personally and professionally later in life, and died of a heart attack in California in 1953. After his death, two Pennsylvania towns persuaded Thorpe’s wife to bury his remains in the state and create a memorial to the former legend. As part of the deal, the towns merged and became Jim Thorpe, Pa.; the town, north of Philadelphia, holds a birthday celebration for Thorpe each year on May 21 and 22. jimthorpe.org

DAYTONTRIANGLES.COM

the first to join the newly formed American Professional Football Association, which would change its name to the National Football League in 1922. The Triangles won that first game 14-0 and finished the season with a winning record. But poor play in subsequent years, low attendance at home and financial pressures led to the team’s sale and departure from Dayton in 1930. The team — and that first game — were largely forgotten until 2005, when the city of Dayton unveiled an Ohio Historical Society marker at the site, which now hosts a baseball diamond, soccer field and 120-seat pavilion. Despite its current configuration, fans can see how the park once


EXPERIENCE

INDULGE

IRELAND GO-AS-YOU-PLEASE

IRELAND CHAUFFEUR-DRIVE

Self-drive homestay B&B vacation, featuring town, farm, country and historic homes 6 days/6 nights or longer from $391 per person

Customized itinerary for a small group of family and friends with deluxe & castle hotel stays and driver for 2 to 10 persons 9 days/8 nights from $1428 per person

CIE Tour’s Ireland Independent Vacations offer a wide range of flexible options to suit your interests, including go-as-you-please and prebooked B&Bs, A La Carte Hotels throughout the country, and independent prebooked packages. CIE Tours also offers a range of over 50 fully-inclusive escorted coach tours. Photos: Above – Bunratty Castle, Co. Clare; Inset – Friendly Irish Bed & Breakfast

Contact your travel agent, call

800.243.8687 or visit www.cietours.com


GoEscape summer2105  
GoEscape summer2105