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Switzerland, Lucerne: Lion Monument in Lucerne

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Gletschergarten Lowendenkmal is massive heartrending stone relief which was carved to remember the Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution when defending Louis XVI. Swiss Guards were and are famous as brave sentries. Today, they still surround the Pope. When the revolutionaries stormed the Tuileries Palace in Paris, more than 800 were killed during the fighting, after surrender, or died in prison of their wounds. 300 lucky survived because they were with the detachment which King Louis XVI had sent to Normandy to escort grain convoys. Two surviving Swiss officers went on to become senior ranked guards for Napoleon.

In 1880, Mark Twain had this to say about it ” His size is colossal, his attitude is noble. His head is bowed, the broken spear is sticking in his shoulder, his protecting paw rests upon the lilies of France. Vines hang down the cliff and wave in the wind, and a clear stream trickles from above and empties into a pond at the base, and in the smooth surface of the pond the lion is mirrored, among the water-lilies.

Around about are green trees and grass. The place is a sheltered, reposeful woodland nook, remote from noise and stir and confusion ­and all this is fitting, for lions do die in such places, and not on granite pedestals in public squares fenced with fancy iron railings. The Lion of Lucerne would be impressive anywhere, but nowhere so impressive as where he is.”

US: Jekyll Island, GA – Treasure Hunt on Jekyll Island

Every winter, throughout the months of January and February, the Jekyll Island Authority hosts a beach treasure hunt known as Island Treasures.island-treasures-2000x600

The origin of the event dates back to the early 1900s, when fishermen used glass floats as markers on their nets. Occasionally, the floats would break loose and wash ashore for lucky beachcombers to find and keep. Collecting the rare, highly sought-after glass floats became a hobby in the 1950s.

On Jekyll Island, the tradition continues with the annual Island Treasures event. Artists from across the country are selected to create one-of-a-kind glass floats. Colorful hand-crafted glass floats or globes, similar to the ones once used on fishing nets, are created by glass artisans from across the country.  New for this year, treasure hunters will now hunt for clear, plastic globes that can be exchanged for a handmade glass float at the Jekyll Island Guest Information Center.

Island Treasures are hidden daily, always  in plain view and public spaces. The treasures will never be placed in the dunes, marshes, animal habitats or private property. And, each weekend, double the number of globes hidden around the island.

Inside each plastic globe,  lucky treasure hunters will find a card with instructions to take the globe to the Jekyll Island Guest Information Center. Each card will have a number that corresponds to a real, handcrafted Island Treasure. Hunters will be limited to one glass float per household per year, increasing everyone’s chance to find a glass float. Hunters will also receive a certificate of authenticity and artist biography for their one-of-a-kind float. The Guest Information Center will be open daily, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

This Island Treasures event is FREE and lots of fun for all ages and as a bonus you get to explore this beautiful island.

Location: Jekyll Island Guest Information Center, 901 Downing Musgrove Causeway
Jekyll Island, GA 31527
Date: until Feb 28, 2018
Time: Open daily, 9 -6pm
Tel: 912- 635-3636 or 1-877-4-Jekyll
jekyllisland.com/signatureevents/island-treasures
For Regional accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: jekyllisland.com, goldenisles.com

US: Manassas, VA – Runners Shake Tail Feathers at Prince William 5k Turkey Trot

The Prince William 5k Turkey Trot and 1 Mile Fun Run is a family friendly and festive celebration of Thanksgiving Day.  The race theme  being: “Trot, Eat, Sleep!” These high energy amusing races highlight Prince William County as a healthy, fun, and active community.prince-william-turkey-trot

Participants are encouraged to wear their best Thanksgiving themed gear: Pilgrim, Pocahontas, Turkey, Pie, Native American and Colonial. This event will be full of festivities and most importantly tons of fun including music, best costume awards, and a chance to win a Golden Ticket: All runners receive a FRR finish line envelope, the random Golden Ticket awards – “Willy Wonka” style–  featuring a mystery gift.
Top 5 men and women receive Running Store Gift Cards – $100/$75/$50/$25/$25.
100 pumpkin pie Duck Donuts are randomly given to 100 lucky race finishers.

1 Mile Fun Run/Walk: The one mile fun run-walk is a low key non-timed event. The 1 mile race is geared toward the youth, however, runners of all ages and abilities are welcome and beginners are encourage to attend.prince-william-turkey-run2

Stay Warm! The Freedom Aquatic & Fitness Center has graciously opened its facility so participants and spectators can stay ‘warm’ both pre and post-race. A DJ will play music from 8:00-10:30.

Location: Freedom Aquatics & Fitness Center, 9100 Freedom Center Blvd., Manassas, VA 20110
Date: Sat,  Nov 26, 2016
Time: 8:30 a.m. Prince William Turkey Trot 5K , 9:30 a.m. 1 Mile Run/Walk
funrunracing.com/the-pw-5k-turkey-trot
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: discoverpwm.com

Canada: Cape Breton, Nova Scotia – Smooth Rum

Fortress Louisbourg, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, is producing smooth rum – a drink that would have been downed by rich and poor in the 18th century. Don’t forget to bring it home as a souvenir. Every time you feel the smooth liquor go down, you’ll remember your trip – and how lucky we are to live in this century. To buy it, just ask for Fortress Rum, what else?

Fortress Rum

Canada: Cape Breton, Nova Scotia – Perfume Court

Before you enter Fortress Louisbourg, Cape Breton, NS, you can visit a fisherman’s cottage and learn about their lives in the 18th century. Perhaps they were the lucky ones living outside the walls, for the aboriginals said you could smell the fortress before you arrived as soldiers rarely bathed and there were no toothbrushes. Aboriginals stayed way outside the fortress. Now we know why Louis XV court was called the “perfume court” as they needed to cover up the human aromas.

Fortress Fisherman's Cottage