MD: Baltimore is Light City: Light Displays, Sculptures, Video Projections on Buildings

Baltimore, MD Exit 54: Light City is a FREE festival that transforms Baltimore with large-scale light installations, performances, music and innovation. Central to Light City is the BGE Light Art Walk along Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, featuring more than 50 attractions including visual arts such as illuminated sculptures, projections, interactive technologies, performances, concerts, food vendors and a children’s area.

Baltimore Light City Skyline

Performance artists bring Light City to life with entertaining acts including fire (a showcase of fire and LED performances utilizing dance, flow arts, circus arts, and music), illuminated puppets, projections, stilt walkers, dance, musical entertainment at the Inner Harbor            Amphitheater and along the BGE Light Art Walk.

Inner Harbor Skyline Photo Courtesy of Baltimore Office of Promotion and Arts

Music is a major attraction at Light City. The festival features a full schedule of FREE concerts including local, regional and renowned DJs, bands and musicians across every genre.Light City Baltimore Congregation KMA

Families can visit Mini Light City in Pierce’s Park for hands-on, illuminated craft activities in a youth makers’ tent, children’s entertainers and whimsical snacks such as lighted cotton candy. The park is home to a sound garden by artist David Hess.

Congregation_KMA_Photo by: Tom Wexler

From the south shore of the Inner Harbor to Harbor East, festival -goers can explore 1.5 miles of world-class installations – all free, accessible and open to the public.Light City The Pool

Attendees of the Light City Baltimore festival are encouraged to download the free app prior to their visit to see all that the festival has to offer including the festival map, schedule and general festival information. lightcity.org/light-city-baltimore-app

The Pool  Photo by Jen Lewin.

Location: Baltimore’s Inner Harbor – lightcity.org/map
Date: Fri, Mar 31 – Sat, Apr 8, 2017
Hours: lightcity.org/schedule
Tel: 410-752-8632
lightcity.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: visitbaltimore.org

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FL: Eat Delish BBQ While Supporting A Great Cause

Uncle Gary's Rib FestRoyal Palm Beach,  FL Exit 66 to Route 882: What started out as a family get together has turned into a great community event. The  12th annual Uncle Gary’s Rock & Rib Fest is a labor of love. Uncle Gary’s lost his 3-year-old daughter 14 years ago to cancer and Started this BBQ event in her honor and to benefit the Kids Cancer Foundation.Uncle Gary's Kids Cancer

This feel good festival has fun for the whole family including: great live music featuring three live bands throughout the day, dancing, bounce houses, kid’s Fun-zone, face painting, balloon artist, playgrounds, grab bags, games and prizes for the kids and adults, raffles, auction, Pet Rescue Puppies petting zone, princesses and super heroes.Uncle Gary's Rib Fest Kids

Don’t forget the delectable BBQ foods: yummy baby back ribs, smoked pork tenderloins, burgers, chicken, hot dogs, side dishes and cold beverages.Uncle Gary's Rib Fest -Radio

Bring your lawn chairs, blankets, sunblock and kids to this  admission free event that is so much more than just a chance to have fun with the family, eat ribs and barbecue and listen to local bands. All proceeds will be donated to the Royal Palm Beach-based Kids Cancer Foundation.

Location: Wellington Amphitheater. 12100 Forest Hill Blvd., Wellington, FL 33414
Date: Sat, April 1, 2017
Hours: 2 – 9pm
unclegarysrockandribfest.com
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: palmbeachfl.com

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VA: Good Earth Peanuts are Virginia Peanuts at their Best

Skippers, VA Exit 4: Virginia grows the largest variety of peanuts in the world. The Good Earth Peanut Company ships Virginia peanuts fresh in a variety of forms: raw and cooked, in and out of the shell. Sitting right on a 1650’s Tuscarora Indian trail which is now a railroad junction, in an old time (circa 1854) general store, this family business roasts and sells peanuts.IMG_3539

Lindsey and Scott Vincent go beyond the ordinary nut to sell cashew brittle, wasabi flavored peas, nut berry thrill, diet trail mix, cracked pepper and sea salt peanuts, chocolate covered peanut brittle (Sandra’s favorite) and maple covered nuts, as well as pecans like key lime ones (we’re addicted to the butter toasted pecans in our salads).

There are FREE tastes of the 36 or so salty and sweet treats. We’ll take the dark chocolate
covered cherries. Some groceries still line the walls, like McCutcheon’s preserves and Virginia hams.IMG_3538

You’ve gotta stop here, you won’t be disappointed, the quality and the assortment are amazing. You can even order them on-line and have them shipped to you. They will  include information about the history of peanuts, also known as goobers and groundnuts, and how peanuts are grown.  WARNING: These products are addictive!

Location: The Good Earth Peanut Company,  5334 Skippers Road, Skippers, Va 23879
Hours: Mon – Fri 8-6pm, Sat 9-4pm
Tel: 1-800-643-1695
goodearthpeanuts.com

 

 

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CT: Go Green for Year Fourteen of the Mystic Irish Parade

Mystic Irish Parade - StreetMystic, CT Exit 90: Each year, a sliver of Ireland is brought to the small town of Mystic, Connecticut when friends and family from near and far celebrate Celtic and Gaelic customs and traditions.

The 14th Annual Mystic Irish Parade is Mystic’s largest single day event; 30,000 plus spectators and 2,000 plus marchers will march from the Mystic Seaport to downtown Mystic. Kicking off promptly at 1pm, the parade, extends from the Mystic Seaport Museum to the Mystic Art Association.

About 2,200 local community participants will march alongside creatively designed floats and dance to the Celtic music echoing throughout the village while over 32,000 people will fill the streets of Mystic to  cheer  and commemorate the Irish holiday of St. Patrick’s Day.  Fun for the whole family, the parade will be hosting Celtic cultural events, outstanding pipe bands,  fife & drum ensembles, and marching bands.Mystic Irish Parade- Marshall

Better yet, the Red Hot Chilli Pipers are back! The Red Hot Chilli Pipers are a famous bagpipe band known internationally, with an ensemble of pipers, guitarists, keyboards and drummers. With groundbreaking fusion of traditional Irish music and rock anthems, they are sure to make this year’s parade the best yet.

On March 20th we can all be a little Irish! Try to arrive early as police will be closing off Mystic Irish Parade - Crowdsome of the routes to the marching area. The Mystic parade starts at Mystic Seaport’s South Lot and heads into Historic Downtown Mystic where the parade’s “marquis act” will perform. (photo credit: George Tazzini and Larry St. Pierre)

Location: Downtown Mystic, Mystic, CT 06355
Date: Sun, March 19, 2017
Time: Parade Kicks off at 1pm
Tel: 860-572-9578
mysticirishparade.org
For Regional Accommodations: thisismystic.com

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SC: “Butts Only” Contest at Smoke in the ‘Boro BBQ Cookoff

Walterboro, SC Exit 62: The third annual Smoke in the ‘Boro promises to be a mouth watering event, loaded with fun, live music, kids’ activities, an Anything Butt BBQ Smke in the 'Boro - postercompetition and a Butts Only contest.

The weekend will consist of two separate events. “Anything Butt” will be held on Friday night from 5:30-8 pm.  Cooking teams will prepare anything of their choice, from chicken wings to seafood — anything but barbecue. Local judges from Colleton County will evaluate the entries, and the winner will be revealed and prizes awarded.

The teams will then cook their Boston butts and ribs during the night for “Butts Only” , which means Pork only, as required by the SC Barbeque Association and judged by certified, sanctioned judges from around the Southeast.

The teams  present their entries to the judges on Saturday morning. At 11am the gates will be open to the public for tastings and to  partake until 2 pm.

On both Friday and Saturday, tasting tickets for $1.00 each will be available so that you can sample some heavenly food.  There will be great music both days from The Back Road and Going to the Dogs Bands. Free Admission.

Location: Coastal Electric Outback Building, 2269 N Jefferies HWY, Walterboro, SC 29488
Date: Fri March 17 – Sat March 18, 2017
Time: Fri 5:30 – 8pm, Sat 11 – 2pm
Tel: 843-539-1133
thecolletoncenter.org/events/
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: walterborosc.org/visitingus

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VA: A History Lesson Given in a Cemetery – Manassas City Cemetery Tour

Manassas, VA Exit 158: What better place to learn a piece of Manassas history than with a Cemetery Tour. Learn about “Important Citizens who Influenced Prince William County History”. The Manassas City Cemetery tour is a biographical tour of our predecessors which allows you to discover their contributions to society.  Manassas City Cemetery Tour

The Ladies Memorial Association of Manassas (later to become the United Daughters of the Confederacy) created the Confederate Cemetery in 1867 on one acre of donated land. The land was given to hold the remains of Confederate soldiers “scattered over the Plains.”

Although the Bull Run Ladies Association reburied the remains of soldiers found on the battlefield in the Groveton Cemetery, there were many other remains recovered throughout Manassas. In 1911, the Association placed a bronze statue of a Confederate Soldier “At Rest” on the brownstone monument that had been dedicated in 1889. Legend has it that the soldier faces east to guard against attack from Washington.  Manassas City Cemetery Tour 2

Each year for the cemetery tour a different theme is used. Tragic deaths (murders or accidents), women, cemetery architecture are just a few from the past. This year focuses on County and Community leaders: Sheriffs, politicians, school administrators,… This tour is done with the greatest respect to the cemetery and its “inhabitants”.

To purchase tickets visit: manassasechoes.com, or call 703-368-1873

Location: Manassas Confederate Cemetery, 9317 Center St., Manassas, VA 20110
Date: Fri, March 17, 2017
Time: 8pm – 9:30 PM
Tel: 703-257-8265
manassasmuseum.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: manassascity.org, discoverpwm.com

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NC: A Blast From the Past – Learn About Life on a 1900’s Tobacco Farm

Kenly, NC Exit 107:  Come visit the Tobacco Farm Life Museum and step back in time to a turn-of-the-century homestead, including a restored house and detached kitchen, smokehouse, schoolhouse, log tobacco barn, and even an outhouse, all of which have been furnished with period artifacts (bedspreads and rugs made out of tobacco twine), to re-create farmstead life revolving around the Golden Leaf of tobacco. TobaccoFarm

Get a glimpse of the social and community life of tobacco farming families.
Exhibits showcase a typical kitchen, toys, home remedies, school life, rural doctors, a store, the Tuscarora Indians (first tobacco farmers), farm machinery, and a kids’ hands-on gallery. Catch a video on modern tobacco farming.

The 6,000 square foot museum features both permanent and rotating exhibits on farm life, southern medicine, domestic skills, rural social life, and artifacts. Take a trip back in time to a simpler way of life.

Each Saturday from 10am-3pm demonstrations and displays of traditional arts, crafts and trades are featured on-site.  All activities are included with regular admission to the Museum.  List of Activities: tobaccofarmlifemuseum.org/events/stepping-into-the-past

March & April  Activities:

March 5 – Working the Land: Antique tractor displays/farmer appreciation

March 12 – North Carolina Agribusiness: Information and activities regarding NC Agriculture

March 19 – Day of Sharing: Volunteer Projects, Museum Closed

March 26 – Spinning, Casting and Knotting: Fabric art demonstrations

April 2 – Blacksmith: Metal work demonstrations

April 9 – North Carolina Agribusiness: Information and activities regarding NC Agriculture

April 16 -Basket Weaving: Handmade basket demonstrations

April 23 – Let the Games Begin: Traditional games, hands on activities

April 30 – Spinning, Casting and Knotting: Fabric art demonstrations

Location: Tobacco Farm Life Museum, 709 N Church St., Kenly, NC 27542
Hours: Tue – Sat 9:30 –  5pm
Tel: 919-284-3431
tobaccofarmlifemuseum.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: johnstoncountync.org

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RI: Interactive Improv Comedy Show for the Whole Family

Warwick, RI Exit 10A – route 117: Bring Your Own Improv’s Family Friendly Comedy Show is a rarity – a comedy club that you can bring your kids to.BYOI Kids

Bring Your Own Improv (BYOI) is now in its 10th season and family-friendly comedy shows are Fridays at 7pm. This interactive improv show welcomes voluntary audience participation, of all ages.

The format is similar to “Who’s Line is it Anyways” where different games and scenes are set up. The troupe asks for audience input, the actors put their own spin on scenes, and the action changes constantly,  so no two performances are ever the same. They encourage you to participate in one of three ways: Applaud at a scene you like, yell out fantastic suggestions, or if you feel you’re ready,  jump up and get involved with the performers on stage.

So if anyone in your family wants to flex their comic muscles or would just like partake and play along, the clever and creative cast will support you.  No worries, they only choose volunteers with hands up .BYOI Performers

Why not start your weekend off with some laughs, the players are pros and know how to keep the audience entertained.  Sit back and chuckle your cares away with this fun, inexpensive night out with the family. This is a hidden gem if you’re looking for something to do while on a family vacation in the Providence or Newport area. There’s also a Late Night Comedy Show (PG-13) Fridays at 9pm.

For a list of all shows: bringyourownimprov.com/Shows.htm

Location: Warwick Center for the Arts, 3259 Post Rd., Warwick, RI 02886
Dates:  March Family-Friendly Shows –  Fri, Mar 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, 2017
Time: 7 – 8:30pm
Tel: 401-261-7678
bringyourownimprov.com
goprovidence.com/event/bring-your-own-improvs-family-friendly-comedy-show/29118/

For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: goprovidence.com

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FL: Mad Hatter’s Tea Party at Flagler Museum

Palm Beach, FL Exit 70: The Flagler Museum invites you to tumble down the rabbit hole and enjoy all the splendor of their “Mad Hatter’s Tea Party”.Flagler's Mad Hatter Tea Party

Families are invited to come dressed for Tea on Saturday, March 11th, 2017 at the enchanting ambiance of the Flagler Museum. The morning will commence at 10am with parents and children creating their own festive bonnets and top hats.

Sporting their fashionable masterpieces, parents and children will then be entertained by a  story from “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and learn proper table etiquette from the Mad Hatter.

The ending is as divine as the start,  culminating with a Gilded Age style tea lunch in the Museum’s Café des Beaux-Arts, designed in the style of a nineteenth-century Beaux Arts railway palace. Families will be delighted with an assortment complete with dainty tea sandwiches, traditional scones, and sweets.Mad Hatter's Tea Party

Space is limited, advance purchase is required. To Buy Tickets: flaglermuseum.us/museum-store/mad-hatter-tea-party

For those of you unable to make this charming event, fortunate for you that the Flagler Museum offers an afternoon tea each day, which features an array of delicacies and refreshments reminiscent of the elegance of entertaining during the Gilded Age. Don’t miss the chance to treat yourself to a a selection of gourmet tea sandwiches, traditional scones, and sweets complemented by the Flagler Museum’s own Whitehall Special Blend™ tea, and served on exquisite Whitehall Collection™ china. Hours: 11:30 – 2:30pm Tues – Sat, 12 – 3 pm on Sun

Photo Courtesy of: © Flagler Museum

Location: One Whitehall Way, Palm Beach, FL 33480
Date: Sat., March 11, 2017
Time: 10am
Tel: 561- 655-2833
flaglermuseum.us
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: thepalmbeaches.com

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SC: Dillon Wellness Center – Exercise Gym is only $5

Dillon, SC Exit 193: The City of Dillon’s Wellness Center is approximately half way between New York and Miami. Why not stop and workout the kinks of travel or walk off that lunch while enjoy their facility. IMG_0456

You are welcome to use (for FREE) the 1/2 mile lighted outdoor walking path outside the complex , which is open 24/7 and dogs on a leash are always welcome.

You can buy a day pass for a mere $5 to go inside and use the city of Dillon’s 40,000 sq ft indoor sport and fitness complex that includes state-of-the-art cardiovascular equipment, weight machines, a free weights room and an aerobics & dance room. At the indoor sports complex you can let the kids play basketball, volleyball, or compete in a game of  ping pong.IMG_0460

In addition they have a gym, dry sauna, locker rooms/showers, lounge, wireless internet, cable TV and trained staff.  Why not take a break from all the driving and take advantage of this very inviting and clean gymnasium and fitness center.

Location: 1647 Commerce Dr, Dillon, South Carolina
Hours: Mon – Fri 5:30am – 8:30pm , Sat 8am – 5pm , Sun 2 – 5pm
Tel: 843-774-5115
cityofdillonsc.us/residents/wellness_center.php
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: cityofdillonsc.us

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