Archive for the ‘special events travel’ Category

Heritage Museums & Gardens on Cape Cod Creates Special Activities for Safe Viewing of Partial Solar Eclipse Aug. 21

August 8, 2017
Sandwich, Cape Cod, Massachusetts

The enchanting gardens at Heritage Museums & Gardens in historic Sandwich, MA on Cape Cod, which offers an amazing range of experiences including flying on a zip-line through trees, seeing classic and antique cars, riding a historic carousel © 2017 Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com

(Sandwich, MA)—On August 21, all across the United States, a solar eclipse will be viewed by millions; those on Cape Cod will experience a dramatic partial solar eclipse that won’t be visible again in the U.S. until 2024. To celebrate this national event, Heritage Museum & Gardens, in historic Sandwich on Cape Cod, is offering a special day of activities.

Visitors will receive a free pair of safe eclipse viewing glasses (while supplies last), make their own pinhole projector, talk with astronomy expert Gil Newton, eat moon- and sun-themed food, and participate in other eclipse-related activities.

“This celestial event presents a great opportunity to come to Heritage for a day of fun and learning together about the natural world,” says Ellen Spear, president and CEO. “We encourage visitors to come for the day, spread a blanket on the Parade Field in the afternoon, make a pinhole projector, and view the solar eclipse together. ‘Moon Day’ at Heritage will be great fun!”

The event takes place between 1-4 pm, with the ultimate expression of the eclipse at about 2:30 pm.

Family Fun Fridays

Heritage Museums & Gardens—a premier cultural attraction on Cape Cod and a magnet for families— is hosting two more Family Fun Friday Events this season.  The events, sponsored by the Arbella Insurance Foundation, are free with admission and feature a live performance and activities throughout the day that appeal to kids and adults of all ages: outdoor games, crafts, scavenger hunt challenges, story times, nature exploration, and outdoor discovery.

“This year’s line-up of Family Fun Friday performances and activities has some old favorites and some great new talent. Heritage is a treasured place where families can truly be together for relaxing, quality time together,” said Ellen Spear, Heritage president and CEO. “Family Fun Fridays add to the fun, and are a place where families can make memories that will last a lifetime.”

The upcoming Family Fun Friday performances, which begin at 11 am, are:

August 11: Karen K & the Jitterbugs An unforgettable, theatrical, crowd-engaging musical adventure

August 18: Airborne Comedians An amazing and entertaining show featuring six- and seven-foot high unicycles and lawn chair juggling

Sandwich, Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Children and families enjoy playing in Hidden Hollow™, an enchanting, two-acre outdoor discovery and exploration area that includes a giant treehouse© 2017 Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com

New this year, families can enjoy the Premium Heritage Experience, which gives behind-the-scenes access, inside information, and fun, interactive experiences with Heritage’s collections, gardens, and exhibits. Children and families will also enjoy playing in Hidden Hollow™, an enchanting, two-acre outdoor discovery and exploration area that includes a giant treehouse; exploring 100 acres of nature trails, woodlands, and gardens; and riding on a vintage carousel.

Set on 100 stunning acres of gardens, nature trails, and open spaces, Heritage Museums & Gardens is the only place where you can browse through rare works of art, fly through the trees on a zip line, and see iconic antique automobiles all in one day. Explore Hidden Hollow™, an interactive outdoor discovery area for kids of all ages. Take a ride on the vintage carousel. And find your own special spot on Cape Cod.

Heritage Museums & Gardens is open daily through October 9, 10 am-5 pm. For information or to purchase tickets, visit heritagemuseums.org.

 

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Lottery Opens for Tickets to 2016 White House Easter Egg Roll

February 12, 2016
White House, Washington DC

White House, Washington DC © 2016 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

WASHINGTON – The President and First Lady announced today that the South Lawn of the White House will be opened up for children 13 years and younger and their families on Monday, March 28th for the 2016 White House Easter Egg Roll. This will be the final Easter Egg Roll of the Obama Administration, and will feature live music, sport courts, cooking stations, storytelling and, of course, Easter egg rolling. In honor of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative, this year’s event will also include the first-ever White House Fun Run.

TICKETS 

White House Easter Egg Roll tickets can be requested through an online lottery which opens today, Friday, February 12at 12:00 PM EST and closes on Wednesday, February 17, at 12:00 PM EST. Winners will be notified at a later date; tickets are free of charge and cannot be sold. To enter the lottery, please visit www.recreation.gov.

THEME

To honor the final Easter Egg Roll of the Obama Administration, this year’s theme will be “Let’s Celebrate,” and will feature aspects of First Lady Michelle Obama’s initiatives, as well as the contributions the Obama Administration has made to the Easter Egg Roll.

FUN RUN 

In honor of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative, this year’s event will also include the first-ever White House Fun Run.       

SOUVENIR EGGS

This year’s White House Easter Egg Roll features five souvenir eggs, designed by graphic designer and blogger Joy Cho. The collection features four colored eggs with stamped signatures of the President and First Lady on the back, and one gold “Bo and Sunny” egg, with stamped “signatures” and “paw prints” of Bo and Sunny on the back.

The National Park Foundation (NPF), the official charity of America’s national parks, produces and sells the commemorative White House Easter eggs. Each child 13 years and younger who attends the White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn, which sits on President’s Park, will also receive a souvenir egg.

To place your order for the full collection of 2016 White House Easter Egg (all 5 eggs),  visit easter.nationalparks.org.

2016 SOUVENIR POSTER DESIGN CONTEST 

The White House invites all elementary and middle school students to submit original artwork related to this year’s theme for the 2016 Easter Egg Roll Design Contest. The First Lady will select the winning designs, which will be used as a part of the White House 2016 Easter Egg Roll program and souvenir poster.

Submissions for the contest will be accepted starting Friday February 12, and will close on Monday, February 22, at noon EST. Designs should be uploaded towww.whitehouse.gov/eastereggroll. Artwork should reflect this year’s theme. Please note submissions may be made public during the selection process.

For the most up-to-date information on the Easter Egg Roll and other public events at the White House,  visit www.whitehouse.gov/eastereggroll.

 

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New York State Pays Homage on 150th Anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Death

April 15, 2015
An 1889 map illustrates the journey of Lincoln's funeral cortege; the National Park Service is replicating the "Lincoln Journey Home," starting April 18 in Washington DC and ending May 3 in Springfield, Illinois (National Park Service).

An 1889 map illustrates the journey of Lincoln’s funeral cortege; the National Park Service is replicating the “Lincoln Journey Home,” starting April 18 in Washington DC and ending May 3 in Springfield, Illinois (National Park Service).

by Karen Rubin

New York State is commemorating the 150th anniversary of the death of President Abraham Lincoln starting this month with numerous special events statewide, including a full day of free activities on Saturday, April 25 at the New York State Capitol. This is the date the Lincoln Funeral Train arrived in Albany in 1865 carrying the slain President’s body that then laid in state at the old Capitol on April 26.

But before the funeral cortege arrives in Albany, it will come to New York City, on Friday, April 24, where programs will be held at Federal Hall National Memorial11 a.m. & 1 pm

(Federal Hall National Memorial is at 26 Wall Street, near the corner of Wall Street and Nassau Street. (Called the Birthplace of American Government, it was here on Wall Street, where George Washington took the oath of office as the first President, and this site was home to the first Congress, Supreme Court, and Executive Branch offices. The current structure, a Customs House, later served as part of the US Sub-Treasury. Now, the building serves as a museum and memorial to the first President and the beginnings of the United States of America.)

A mask of Abraham Lincoln's visage was made just before his death © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

A mask of Abraham Lincoln’s visage was made just before his death © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

President Lincoln guided our nation through one of its darkest times, and his commitment to unity and equality continues to inspire,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said. “As we recognize the 150th anniversary of his death, I encourage all New Yorkers to learn more about his life, his enduring legacy and his profound impact on our nation.”

The next day, the funeral train will come into Albany.

The East Gallery of the Capitol will feature an exhibit dedicated to Lincoln’s memory and the contributions New York made to the Union effort in the Civil War. Central to the exhibit is the flag that laid on the President’s coffin. In addition, numerous Lincoln-themed activities will take place at the Capitol including re-enactors, period music and more. To cap off the day, the National Parks Service is sponsoring a presentation by a noted actor who will portray Lincoln in the War Room of the Capitol at 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. All events are free and open to the public. However, because of limited seating, reservations are required for the Lincoln portrayal and can be made at www.governor.ny.gov/lincolntribute.

Saturday, April 25 1 pm – 7 pm, New York State Capitol

1 p.m. – Civil War reenactors representing the 123rd New York Volunteers, the 125th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, the 26th USCT, the 7th New York Heavy Artillery, and several other recreated Civil War units will gather in West Capitol Park near Swan Street and begin a ceremonial march down Washington Avenue to East Capitol Park where they will conduct a memorial service honoring President Lincoln.

Following the service, reenactors will remain outside taking questions, and conduct marching drills and Civil War military demonstrations. A period 12-pound Mountain Howitzer replica cannon that is part of the 7 th New York Heavy Artillery will also be on display throughout the day in East Capitol Park.

Hourly, from 2-6 p.m. – Free Capitol tours start at the base of the Senate staircase on the first floor.

Lincoln impersonator at the Smithsonian's Museum of American History The National Park Service program features accomplished Lincoln actor, Fritz Klein who will give voice Abraham Lincoln's commitment to the idea that the United States was "conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal." © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Lincoln impersonator at the Smithsonian’s Museum of American History The National Park Service program features accomplished Lincoln actor, Fritz Klein who will give voice Abraham Lincoln’s commitment to the idea that the United States was “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

3:30 pm and 6:30 p.m. (Online reservations required) – Musicians Anne and Ridley Enslow, dressed in 1860s costumes, will recapture the drama and pathos of the great American Civil War through songs and tunes. This will be followed by a first person interpretative program presented by noted Lincoln impersonator Fritz Klein that focuses on Lincoln’s hopes and dreams for the country during his tenure as president. Seating is limited. The presentation will be approximately 90 minutes. Reservations can be made at www.governor.ny.gov/lincolntribute .

The train then continues on to Buffalo, and programs will be held on Sunday, April 26, at the Buffalo History Museum at 3 p.m. and then Monday, April 27, at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site, at 9:30 a.m. and at the Central Library Auditorium12 p.m.

Visitors will be able to experience the Lincoln exhibit at the Capitol throughout the summer. In addition, New York’s Path Through History program will feature sites and events statewide that explore President Lincoln, the Civil War and their connection to the Empire State. Information is available at www.iloveny.com/Lincoln. More information on the National Parks Funeral Train events can be found here.

“Over the last four years, the National Park Service has commemorated the 150th anniversary of this country’s greatest national crisis, while exploring its enduring relevance in the 21st century using the guiding theme of Civil War to Civil Rights,” National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis said. “As the sesquicentennial events come to a close, our commemorations of Abraham Lincoln’s funeral train highlight the major cities, including three in New York State, that held funeral ceremonies along the route to Springfield, Illinois. These events in New York, Albany and Buffalo recognize the Empire State’s significant role in the Union war effort, both on the battlefields and on the home front.”

Harold Holzer, Senior Vice President for Public Affairs at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, said, “No state contributed more soldiers, more money, or more innovation to Lincoln’s war to preserve the Union and destroy slavery than did New York. And no state grieved at his assassination more publicly and more passionately. Lincoln earned unforgettably grand farewells in Manhattan, Albany, and Buffalo. But as this exhibit reveals, small tributes occurred in many towns and villages in between, from the Hudson Valley to the Southern Tier—and all along the tracks where his funeral train rode in its journey back to Springfield, Illinois. This is an amazing, virtually untold story of which all New Yorkers should be proud. And they should be equally proud of the successful effort to preserve the flag that once covered his coffin in Albany—and was supplied in 1865 by the Albany woman who helped our state obtain the priceless Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation in Lincoln’s hand. As chair of the Lincoln Bicentennial Foundation, I’m proud to have supported the flag preservation effort. As a Lincoln historian, I’m honored to have worked with Mark Schaming and the New York State Museum on its interpretation. And as a New Yorker, I’m grateful to Governor Cuomo for all he has done to encourage history education and exhibitions in the Capitol and throughout the state.”

For example, New York helped propel Abraham Lincoln onto the national stage, and his presidency and legacy have deep ties to the state. His speech at New York City’s Cooper Union transformed him into a compelling candidate for president. New Yorkers were leaders in America’s anti-slavery movement that set the stage for the Civil War, and the state provided more money and soldiers to the war than any other, including Lincoln’s General-in-Chief. The 1865 funeral train carrying Lincoln’s slain body brought out tens of thousands of mourners both for public viewings in New York City, Albany and Buffalo, and all along the train route as well.

150 years later, New York’s Path Through History takes visitors to sites pivotal to Lincoln and his times:

In addition, The New York-Historical Society has opened a new exhibit, Lincoln and the Jews, on view through June 7, 2015 (170 Central Park West (77th Street), New York, NY 10024, 212-873-3400, nyhistory.org).

A Flag for the Ages Exhibit Highlights

President Abraham Lincoln's stovepipe hat © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

President Abraham Lincoln’s stovepipe hat © 2015 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Lincoln funeral train and Civil War exhibition will showcase the national flag placed around the bier, or platform, upon which the slain president’s casket rested as he laid in state in the Capitol in Albany, New York, on April 26, 1865. It also features additional funeral-related artifacts, chronicles Lincoln’s last day, tragic death, and the many ceremonies honoring Lincoln along the funeral train route that carried his body from Washington, D.C., through New York, to Springfield, Illinois. The exhibit will also highlight New York State’s contribution to the Civil War and related historical figures and artifacts.

The flag that draped the coffin was reportedly presented in 1861 by William H. Seward, Secretary of State and former New York State Governor and United States Senator, to Emily Weed Barnes, daughter of Thurlow Weed, a political adviser and close friend to Seward. When the casket bearing Lincoln’s body arrived at the Capitol, Mrs. Barnes wrapped the flag around the bier. The flag remained in the Barnes family and was donated to New York State Battle Flag Collection and accepted by Governor Franklin Roosevelt in 1930.

Office of General Services Commissioner RoAnn M. Destito said, “As the caretaker of the New York State Capitol, OGS is pleased that Governor Cuomo has transformed this building into a place where citizens can not only see government at work, but also learn about our state. The Lincoln exhibit is a wonderful opportunity to go back in time and experience the rich history associated with Lincoln and his legacy.”

Empire State Development Division of Tourism Executive Director Gavin Landry said, “New York State helped propel Abraham Lincoln onto the national stage, and his presidency and legacy have deep ties to the Empire State. From the homes and final resting places of New Yorkers key to the Civil War and its lead up, like Underground Railroad conductor Harriet Tubman; abolitionist John Brown; Lincoln’s Secretary of State and confidant William H. Seward; and Union Army General Ulysses S. Grant, to sites whose industry and technology played a vital role in the Civil War, like the Burden Iron Works, Brooklyn Navy Yard and West Point Foundry, New York’s Path Through History is ready to take visitors one hundred and fifty years back in time.”

State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey said, “Lincoln’s contribution to our country’s history and his connection to our great state will come to life this month as we commemorate the anniversary of his death. Through the numerous presentations and exhibits, New Yorkers will get a true sense of the Civil War era and understand better the events that framed our state’s storied past and how New York impacted the times. Lincoln was a monumental figure of his time and we look forward to seeing his legacy shared with thousands across our state.”

Path Through History highlights historically and culturally significant sites and events throughout New York State. The program, introduced by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, builds on New York’s already robust heritage tourism attractions. The initiative, which is overseen by Empire State Development’s Division of Tourism/I LOVE NEW YORK, is currently focused on 13 themes including: Arts & Culture, Natural History, U.S. Presidents, Women’s Rights, Canals & Transportation, Civil Rights, Colonial History, Immigration, Innovation & Commerce, The Revolutionary War, Native American Heritage, Sports History and the War of 1812. Important heritage sites and events across the state were selected with input from leading historians. For more information, visit www.iloveny.com/paththroughhistory .

In an effort to raise the profile of historic destinations, New York State hosts Path Through History Weekends, utilizing live events to celebrate New York’s history and highlight the tremendous efforts of the people and organizations committed to its preservation and promotion. In 2014, 383 events were held in 55 of New York State’s 62 counties, a 43 percent increase from the prior year. This year, Path Through History Weekend will take place June 20 – 21, 2015.

Follow I LOVE NEW YORK on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or use #LoveNYHistory to join us on the journey down New York’s Path Through History.
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International SWIM Fashion Week in Curacao Feb. 19-22

February 1, 2015

The Dutch-Caribbean island of Curaçao will be the host to the arrival of International SWIM Fashion Week presented by Fashion Show VIP, a Miami-based company.

From February 19 – 22, 2015 the Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, Curaçao will be the hub for fashionistas as top swim and resort wear designers from around the world present their exclusive designs on the beachfront runway.

International designers such as Aqua Vita (Curacao), Julia Pereira by Lybethras (Brazil), Island State (Australia), Phax Swimwear (Colombia), Sirenes De Soleil (USA), and more, will walk the day & night shows.

“With our knowledge of the fashion industry, and Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort’s universal elegance and exclusive location, we have no doubt that International SWIM Fashion Week will be a global success and travel destination fashion event for consumers for years to come,” says Bobby Harris, Founder and President of Fashion Show VIP. “We look forward to this collaboration and delivering an unforgettable weekend of events and swim & resort fashion to the Island of Curaçao.”

The fashion filled weekend will kick off with an exclusive reception party benefiting local charity, Pack for a Purpose. Followed by a schedule of events consisting of runway shows, cocktail parties, pop–up shops displaying the hottest new swimwear designs seen from the runway to purchase, and food & beverage from the resort’s restaurants private beach.

“Swimwear and Resort-wear will be available for purchase that is seen in the shows, located on the veranda of the beach resort, as well as on FashionShowVIP.com following the event.” – co-creator and agency of record, House of Berlin.

For more information on show times and schedule, visit: http://www.internationalswimfashionweek.com

Fashion Show VIP is a Fashion Media and Technology Company that develops and communicates visual content for fashion designers and brands, and acts as an online retailer. Learn more at http://www.fashionshowvip.com.

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Okemo Mountain Resort to Host First-Ever ‘Let It Glow’ Laser Light and Fireworks Show

January 1, 2015
Okemo Mountain Resort  will create a mind-bending landscape of light and sound with its first-ever Let It Glow laser light show spectacular on Sunday, January 18 (photo supplied by Okemo)

Okemo Mountain Resort will create a mind-bending landscape of light and sound with its first-ever Let It Glow laser light show spectacular on Sunday, January 18 (photo supplied by Okemo)

LUDLOW, Vt. – As if the skiing and riding weren’t brilliant enough, Okemo Mountain Resort  will create a mind-bending landscape of light and sound with its first-ever Let It Glow laser light show spectacular on Sunday, January 18.

Guests attending Let It Glow will feel immersed in a laser canopy of illumination as colorful beams bounce off the snow of Okemo’s Bull Run trail located just outside The Sitting Bull restaurant and bar in the Clock Tower base area. The dazzling visual effects of state-of the-art digital graphics that make up this awe-inspiring laser light show are sure to delight everyone attending the free event. And to top it all off, a fireworks grand finale will punctuate the event with a black-powder exclamation point.

Following the laser light and pyrotechnics extravaganza, the Sitting Bull will host a live musical performance by renowned singer-songwriter Stephen Kellogg.

For more information about Okemo Mountain Resort, call 802-228-1600 or visit okemo.com.

 

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New Year’s Eve at Sheraton New York Times Square

December 23, 2014
New Year's Eve in Times Square, New York - something that is a must-do at least once in a lifetime © 2014 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

New Year’s Eve in Times Square, New York – something that is a must-do at least once in a lifetime © 2014 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Sheraton New York Times Square is one of the few big hotels in the Times Square/midtown competitive set that allows for a one-night stay and doesn’t require a multi-night stay on New Year’s Eve ($699 for Superior Room / $899 for Club Room).

Similar hotels in the competitive set: W Times Square, Westin Times Square, Marriott Marquis, Grand Hyatt, Millennium Broadway and Hilton Midtown.

Revels will enjoy extended hours on New Year’s Eve in the lobby bar (open until 3am), and champagne toast at midnight.

The 44th Floor Club Lounge bar for Club Level guests is open until 11pm. Sheraton Social Hour wines are available from 5-8pm, with 2-oz pours of signature wines from rated 90+ points by Wine Spectator for $5.

A Bloody Mary bar is available at noon on New Year’s Day in the 44th Floor Club Lounge for Club Level guests ($15 per drink)

Book by clicking here: www.sheratonnewyork.com/NYE-hotel-package  or call 888-627-7067.

 

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James Taylor to Perform New Year’s Eve Concert at Stowe to Benefit Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center

December 8, 2014

STOWE, VT – James Taylor will perform Dec. 31 in a special concert to benefit the Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center located at Stowe Mountain Resort in Vermont.

The five-time Grammy Award winning singer/song-writer will return to present an intimate evening of some of his most beloved songs in this New Year’s Eve event.  Taylor will be joined by members of his band, including his wife and son, Kim and Henry Taylor.  The Taylor family are regular visitors to Stowe and are all avid skiers.  Taylor last performed at Stowe to open the Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center in 2010.  The concert will begin at 8:30 p.m.

Proceeds will benefit the Spruce Peak Arts Center Foundation, Inc. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not for profit public organization funded in part by contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations.

The 420-seat multipurpose theatre, situated at the base of Stowe Mountain Resort, is committed to presenting live and multimedia performances including theater, music, dance, variety, film, and much more. The Center also includes active partnerships and collaborations to engage, educate and entertain resort guests and residents of Stowe and surrounding communities. Tickets are available at http://www.sprucepeakarts.org/event/jamestaylor/.

 

James Taylor, a Notable Career

James Taylor’s music embodies the art of songwriting in its most personal and universal forms. He is a master at describing specific, even autobiographical situations in a way that resonates with people everywhere.  In 1971, Taylor was on the cover of Time magazine, heralded as the harbinger of the singer-songwriter era.  Four decades later his warm baritone, introspective lyrics and unique guitar playing still blaze a path to which young musicians aspire.

He has sold over 100 million albums throughout his career and has earned 40 gold, platinum, and multi-platinum awards, multiple GRAMMY Awards and has been inducted into both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the prestigious Songwriters Hall of Fame.  His songs have had a profound influence on songwriters and music lovers from all walks of life: “Fire and Rain,” “Country Road,” “Something in the Way She Moves,” “Mexico,” “Shower the People,” “Your Smiling Face,” “Carolina In My Mind,” “Sweet Baby James,” “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight,” “You Can Close Your Eyes,” “Walking Man,” “Never Die Young,” “Shed a Little Light,” “Copperline,” “Enough to be On Your Way,” “Caroline I See You,” and many more.

Early next year, Taylor will release a new album or original, which he wrote and recorded in between touring over the past few years.  It will also be a particularly special summer for Taylor as he will be performing a full length concert with his All-Star Band for the first time ever at Fenway Park to a sold out crowd on August 6, with guest Bonnie Raitt.

In a career marked by artistic triumphs, the past few years for Taylor have been notable for both creative virtuosity and recognition of exceptional achievement.  In 2012, he was awarded the distinguished Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government and in 2011, was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama. Both medals are their nation’s highest honors for artistic excellence recognizing “outstanding achievements and support of the arts.” In 2011, Taylor was also honored with a Carnegie Hall Perspectives series, which consisted of four concert evenings presented by Carnegie Hall and featuring Taylor and personally selected musical guests.

Raised in North Carolina, Taylor lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Kim, and their twins, Henry and Rufus. (www.jamestaylor.com, http://www.facebook.com/jamestaylor)

Tickets go on sale December 11 at 10 am at sprucepeakarts.org.

 

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Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Offers Exclusive Experience for Historic Orion Launch Dec. 4

December 2, 2014
Witness history in the making Dec. 4 during NASA's Orion launch from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

Witness history in the making Dec. 4 during NASA’s Orion launch from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Dec. 2, 2014) KENNEDY SPACE CENTER – There’s no better place to be on the morning of Thursday, Dec. 4 than Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, where guests can witness firsthand Exploration Flight Test-1, or EFT-1, the test flight of the uncrewed Orion spacecraft from America’s gateway to space and experience a complete pre-launch-to-post-splashdown program, including Orion-related activities, exhibits, astronaut appearances and live coverage and commentary.

“The Orion launch will be visible from many areas across the Space Coast, but there’s only one way to feel the rumble, experience the excitement and get up to date, minute-to-minute information from NASA TV, astronauts and space experts — and that’s at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex,” said Therrin Protze, chief operating officer of the Visitor Complex. “This is your chance to be part of history in the making and tell your kids and grandkids you were here when we achieved our first steps toward Mars.”

EFT-1 featuring the Orion capsule aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket, is set to lift off from Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station as early as 7:05 a.m. The two-orbit, 4.5 hour mission culminates with a splashdown of the capsule in the Pacific Ocean.

The following programs are exclusive to those who choose to view the historic launch from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex:

 Journey with Orion and Countdown to Splashdown programs with John Zarrella

Join John Zarrella, former CNN space expert and correspondent, for the Journey with Orion program leading up to launch, beginning at 5:30 a.m. and the Countdown to Splashdown program, beginning one hour prior to splashdown. Mission experts and astronauts join Zarrella on stage to share their unique perspective during the mission. Guests will be invited to ask questions and participate in giveaways. A CNN veteran for 32 years, Zarrella has covered more than 75 shuttle missions including the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope and repair missions, John Glenn’s return to flight, the loss of Challenger and Columbia and the return to shuttle flight, as well as the final shuttle mission, STS-135.

Live NASA TV Coverage

Live NASA TV coverage of the mission, beginning at 4:30 a.m., will be broadcast throughout the Visitor Complex on Jumbotron screens in the Rocket Garden and outside of Space Shuttle AtlantisSM, on giant IMAX® Theater screens and in the Astronaut Encounter Theater. Live coverage will also be displayed at the Apollo/Saturn V Center throughout the launch countdown and launch.

 Astronaut Appearances

Astronaut appearances are scheduled at various locations during the launch countdown including NASA veteran space shuttle astronauts Sam Durrance, Bruce McCandless, Mike McCulley, Jerry Ross and Winston Scott.

Displays and Exhibits

NASA, Mars and Orion interactive displays and models are located throughout the Visitor Complex, adding to the excitement of launch, offering guests additional opportunities to learn more about NASA and the significance of these first steps to eventually launch astronauts to Mars. Displays run from Dec. 2 through Dec. 4 and include:

  • Exploration Systems Development exhibit featuring Mars, with interactive screens, high-resolution models and a photo op with a mock-up space suit, NASA
  • Space Launch System presentation of five-segment rocket motor and Launch Abort System, with representatives available for questions, ATK
  • Full-size RL10 upper stage engine and a RS-68 booster-stage engine model used for Delta IV Heavy Lift Rocket, Aerojet Rocketdyne
  • Delta IV rocket and EFT-1 mission displays, United Launch Alliance
  • Social media photo booth with ¼ scale replica of Orion crew capsule; EFT-1 flight pattern and Orion heat shield displays, Lockheed Martin
  • “I’m On Board” banner signing opportunity, NASA
  • Space Launch System and Orion inflatable, NASA
  • Commercial Crew Program, NASA
  • Launch Services Program, NASA
  • Technology Transfer, NASA
  • Armstrong Visitor Center, NASA
  • Mars Rover display, NASA

Photographer Michael Soluri

Guests may meet renowned photographer Michael Soluri on Dec. 3 for a book signing and presentation for his new book, “Infinite Worlds: The People and Places of Space Exploration.” A 30-minute presentation by Soluri will be held at 12 p.m. in Exploration Space®: Explorers Wanted. Soluri will be available to sign copies of his book at 1 p.m. at The Space Shop. Visit Space Shuttle AtlantisSM to view 27 of Soluri’s images of the NASA and Kennedy Space Center workforce.

Soluri has documented humankind’s space exploration journey for more than 15 years. His new book takes a behind-the-scenes look at NASA’s centers in Florida, Texas and Maryland. Published by Simon & Schuster, “Infinite Worlds: The People and Places of Space Exploration” features more than 300 fascinating images, 15 essays and a forward by legendary former astronaut and Senator John Glenn.

Speakers

NASA and Orion experts are scheduled to speak Dec. 3 and Dec. 4 on a variety of topics including NASA’s new Orion spacecraft and the Space Launch System.

The launch window is set for the morning of Dec. 4, beginning at 7:05 a.m. and extending to 9:44 a.m. Guests may choose from two viewing sites: the Apollo/Saturn V Center located within secured areas of Kennedy Space Center or the Space Shuttle AtlantisSM attraction, situated at the main Visitor Complex. The Apollo/Saturn V viewing area overlooks the scenic Banana Creek and offers a lawn area and bleacher seating with a view of Launch Pad 37, just 8 miles away at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. This location is accessible only by bus from the Visitor Complex. A limited number of tickets are available for launch viewing from the Apollo/Saturn V Center for $20 plus the cost of admission. Bus transportation to the Apollo/Saturn V Center is available from 3 to 6 a.m. Viewing from Space Shuttle Atlantis is included in admission. Admission and launch viewing tickets can be purchased online at www.kennedyspacecenter.com. (Visit the website for additional information, including the launch scrub policy).

After launch, guests can spend the day exploring Space Shuttle AtlantisSM, Exploration Space: Explorers Wanted, Rocket Garden and other attractions. At dusk, the Visitor Complex presents its all-new Holiday Rocket Garden Light Show in the majestic Rocket Garden featuring a choreographed light and music program. Guests also will be treated to a stunning array of decorations including a 41-foot Christmas tree and a giant NASA “meatball” ornament.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex brings to life the epic story of the U.S. space program, offering a full day or more of fun and educational activities, including the Kennedy Space Center Tour featuring the Apollo/Saturn V Center with an actual Saturn V moon rocket, Shuttle Launch Experience®, 3D IMAX® space films, Astronaut Encounter, Exploration Space®: Explorers Wanted and many other interactive exhibits. The new $100 million home for Space Shuttle AtlantisSM opened June 29, 2013. Admission also includes the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, featuring historic spacecraft and the world’s largest collection of personal astronaut memorabilia, which opens daily at noon and closing times vary by season. Only 45 minutes from Orlando, Fla., Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex opens daily at 9 a.m. with closing times varying by season. Admission is $50 + tax for adults and $40 + tax for children ages 3-11. The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex offers annual passes starting at $75 + tax for adults and $60 + tax for children ages 3-11.

For more information, call 877-313-2610 or visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com.

Twitter: @ExploreSpaceKSC

facebook.com/KennedySpaceCenterVisitorComplex

 

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North Pole Bound: Middleton, Wisconsin Polar Express Train Ride Paired with Family Getaway

November 14, 2014
The POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride in Middleton launches its one-hour round-trip journeys from the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Depot starting on Nov. 21 and running through Dec. 22, transporting guests to the North Pole on an unforgettable story-book journey complete with hot chocolate, dancing chefs and vintage passenger train cars. A Premier Rail Collection Family Getaway pairs THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride tickets with hotel accommodations (photo courtesy of Premier Rail Collection)

The POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride in Middleton launches its one-hour round-trip journeys from the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Depot starting on Nov. 21 and running through Dec. 22, transporting guests to the North Pole on an unforgettable story-book journey complete with hot chocolate, dancing chefs and vintage passenger train cars. A Premier Rail Collection Family Getaway pairs THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride tickets with hotel accommodations (photo courtesy of Premier Rail Collection)

MIDDLETON, Wis. –Families can escape the crowds for an winter getaway promising sing-alongs and Santa  aboard everyone’s favorite holiday train. The POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride in Middleton launches its one-hour round-trip journeys from the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Depot starting on Nov. 21 and running through Dec. 22, transporting guests to the North Pole on an unforgettable story-book journey complete with hot chocolate, dancing chefs and vintage passenger train cars.

A Premier Rail Collection Family Getaway pairs THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride tickets with hotel accommodations at a choice of four Middleton hotels for a weekend getaway or mid-week escape.

Package prices begin at $115 per adult and $22 per child (ages 2 to 12), based on double occupancy, and include:

  • Coach seats aboard The Middleton POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride
    (20$ per passenger upgrade to First Class or $40 per passenger upgrade to Diamond Class; babe-in-arms ad $10 upgrade fare)
  • Quaker Steak & Lube 10% OFF entire bill (with minimum $30 purchase)
  • Steam train collectible ornament

For package reservations, contact your professional travel agent or call Key Holidays at (800) 783-0783.

To make Polar Express train-only reservations, call 855-847-1430 or visit www.wsorpolarexpressride.com/buy-tickets.

Wisconsin & Southern Railroad’s Polar Express is a part of Premier Rail Collection, which also owns and operates a number of  Polar Express Train Rides throughout the United States including: Saratoga & North Creek Railway, The Eastern Flyer’s Polar Express, and Texas State Railroad.

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Saratoga & North Creek Railway Begins Service to North Pole onboard THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride

November 14, 2014
The Saratoga & North Creek Railway has begun service to the North Pole onboard THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride.  The magical story comes to life for a one-hour round-trip journey to the North Pole on select dates through Dec. 28 (photo courtesy of Premier Rail Collection).

The Saratoga & North Creek Railway has begun service to the North Pole onboard THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride. The magical story comes to life for a one-hour round-trip journey to the North Pole on select dates through Dec. 28 (photo courtesy of Premier Rail Collection).

Saratoga Springs, NY – The Saratoga & North Creek Railway has begun service to the North Pole onboard THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride.  The magical story comes to life when the train departs the Saratoga Springs Depot for a one-hour round-trip journey to the North Pole.

The Saratoga & North Creek Railway is currently entering its 4th season operating THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride and was thrilled to welcome Saratoga Springs Mayor, Joanne Yepsen as its first special guest conductor of the season.

To date, the Saratoga & North Creek Railway has sold nearly 17,000 tickets for the 2014 holiday ride and has added a new economical class of service to its existing three classes to accommodate increasing demands for affordable family options.

Set to the sounds of the motion picture soundtrack, passengers will relive the magic of the story as they are whisked away on THE POLAR EXPRESS™. Once onboard, hot chocolate and treats are served as passengers read along with the classic children’s book, The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg. Santa and his helpers greet passengers at the North Pole and then board the train, where each child is given the first gift of Christmas – a silver sleigh bell. Chefs aboard each car lead passengers in singing Christmas carols on the ride back to Saratoga Springs Depot.  Families are encouraged to wear their pajamas for the ride!

Ticket prices begin at $70 for  adults and $25 for children (ages 2-11), depending on date and class of service.

The journey begins Nov. 14 and runs through Dec. 28 on select dates. Exact dates, fares and excursion times are available by calling 877-726-7245 or by visiting www.sncrr.com.

The Saratoga & North Creek Railway is a part of Premier Rail Collection, which also owns and operates a number of  Polar Express Train Rides throughout the United States including: Wisconsin & Southern Railroad’s Polar Express, The Eastern Flyer’s Polar Express, and Texas State Railroad.

 

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