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US: Columbia, MD – More Sheep and Wool Than You Can Imagine!

Discover the beauty of sheep, the warmth of wool and the delicious taste of lamb during a fun-filled weekend at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival, 45 years of celebrating all things sheep, from hoof to handwoven.

Sheep1-1jyf79sWith over 275 vendors, more than 800 sheep, and workshops, food, and entertainment, there is something for everyone. Check out the working sheep dogs or sheep shearing demonstrations, learn how to prepare lamb, cheese making, take a spinning class, or shop for a variety of fleece, yarn and roving.

The Parade of Breeds will introduce you to a large variety of sheep breeds, and the Sheep to Shawl Contest will demonstrate shearing, carding, spinning, and weaving a final product in just a few hours.face_wool_sheep_75916_1920x1200

There are auctions and sales for sheep equipment, fiber equipment, and fleeces. You can get many new ideas from the beautiful products on display from the many competitions.

Wool 8de3421d679f6b2f85cecd8e89c80b05With workshops and seminars galore, special activities for kids, cooking demonstrations, food booths, musical entertainment, this festival is going to be a hit with the whole family.

Location: Howard County Fairgrounds, 2210 Fairgrounds Rd, West Friendship, MD 21794-9604
Date: May 5 & 6, 2018
Time: Sat 8:30am – 6pm, Sun 8:30am – 5pm
Tel: 410- 531-3647
sheepandwool.org
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: visithowardcounty.com

US: Florence, SC – Go Nuts for Pecans in Florence and Snag some Free Swag

April is National Pecan month so why not celebrate by following a culinary trail dedicated to the pecan.

Julie Belle's - White Russian Pecan PieFlorence is home to the South Carolina Pecan Trail, showcasing 17 local restaurants and specialty shops offering pecan dishes or products, putting pecans in the spotlight. From pecan-encrusted grouper to pecan pie martinis, those venturing on the trail will experience a variety of originality.Rebel Pie - Danish Pizza

Pick up a passport at the visitors center, 3290 W. Radio Drive, or any of the participating restaurants to start the journey. Earn a stamp in the passport by feasting on the featured pecan item at each establishment.

Pecan Pie Martini - Victors

Return your passport to the Visitors Center in person or by mail for some sweet Pecan Trail swag. Show up with four stamps, and receive a charming metal nutcracker. Eight stamps will get you a drawstring bag and the nutcracker. Present a fully stamped passport and  walk away with a T-shirt, drawstring bag and the nutcracker. SC Pecan Trail

 

Get your stamps and enjoy tasty pecan offerings at these restaurants and specialty shops:

Block and Vino: Seasonal praline pecan cheesecake; candied pecan brie-stuffed chicken

Clay Pot Coffee Shop: Signature BIG cookie: Southern Maple Pecan Oatmeal Cookie

Dolce Vita: Double chocolate chip pecan muffin

Freeman’s Bakery: Assortment of baked goods, including cakes, Danish pastries

Julian Belle’s: White Russian pecan pie

The Library: Bourbon pecan pie

Rebel Pie Wood-fired Pizza: Danish pizza

Red Bone Alley: Chicken salad with pecans; apple crisp; chocolate chip cookie pie

Seminar Brewing: Pecans Gone Wild smoked brown ale

Struttin’ Turkey: Turkey salad with cranberries and pecans

Top Hat Special-Teas: Top Hat Pecan Scones

Town Hall: Braised oxtail ravioli, local sweet potato puree, espelette-spiced pecans and sage oil

Tubb’s Shrimp and Fish Co.: Sweet potato cheesecake

Venus Restaurant and Catering: Pecan (Belgian) waffle, Southern pecan pancakes

Victors: Pecan pie martini

Wholly Smokin’: Goat cheese salad, features warm goat cheese patty encrusted with local pecans

Young Plantations: Variety of flavored pecans

Location: Visitor Information Center, 3290 W. Radio Drive, Florence Center Upper Level, Florence, SC 29501
Time: Daily 9am – 5pm
Tel: 800-325-9005
visitflo.com

US: DeLand, FL – Bacon-lovers Won’t Want to miss this Sizzling Event

The word is out pig lovers won’t want to miss this one: the  DeLand Bacon and Brew Fest. Who does not like Bacon or Beer, a match made in heaven. There will be approximately 125 food and beverage vendors, variety of live music, and the event will play homage to all things bacon with a wide variety of bacon dishes, along with bacon-related and bacon inspired contests.DeLand Bacon Fest Bacon Costume

Imagine bacon, craft beer, wineries, and lots of vendors with their products. Indulge in mouth watering bacon-y deliciousness. You could buy bacon or beer jam, bacon-stuffed pretzels, sample bacon cupcakes, and purchase chocolate covered bacon—that’s just for starters. Many of the regular market vendors spiked their production line to include bacon in some way, whether in fudge, a cheese dip, or a cinnamon roll—or in one of 14 different varieties of bacon itself. Bacon Eating Contest at 2pm.Deland Bacon Fest Bacon Eating ContestDeLand Bacon Fest Group

A portion of the proceeds will go to The Neighborhood Center of West Volusia, so bring on the bacon!

 

 

Location: Earl Brown Park, 750 S Alabama Ave, DeLand, FL 32724
Date: Sat, Sept 30
Time: 1 – 7pm
Tel: 386-316-2959
baconandbrewfestdeland.com
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions:daytonabeach.com
visitnsbfl.com

US: Selma, NC – From Pumpkin Patch to Shopping Destination

DeWayne’s – Would you believe this amazing gift, clothes and garden decor shop started out as a pumpkin stand? DeWayne persevered with his produce stand after having to move it 3 times. What began as DeWayne’s Country Garden in 1991 has transitioned through the years to become known as simply… DeWayne’s.DeWaynes - Pumpkin Patch

Nowadays it has grown and grown beyond the trolls, birdbaths, gargoyles, trellises, fountains, bears and benches outside. It is a destination for shoppers to experience the gift shop, garden center, ladies clothing boutique, menswear and Christmas Land.

DeWayne’s is celebrating the completion of a two-year construction project, a 23,500 sq ft expansion and 9,000 sq ft renovation. The final phase is the redesign and expansion of existing space into a larger women’s clothing Boutique along with a new customer service / checkout area.

The new space allows for the amplification of The Boutique to incorporate more complimenting brands and product trends to the existing lines, including ladies clothing, footwear, jewelry, handbags & accessories. With an outstanding knack of seeking out the hottest and most desired brands, shoppers will love their assortment, including: Alex and Ani, Brighton, Jack Rogers, Dansko, Hobo, Joseph Ribkoff, Hatley, Escapada and Clara Son Woo . You can also buy paper goods, soap, candles and flags.

DeWayne’s family owned business provides customers with a unique shopping experience in over 40,000 sq ft of specialty retailing. Exceptional Customer Service, amazing selection and an unforgettable experience await you.

Dewayne's

Location: DeWayne’s – 1575 Outlet Center Dr, Selma, NC 27576
Hours: Mon – Fri 9:30– 7pm, Sat 9 – 7:30pm, Sun 10 – 6pm
Tel: 919-202-8471
dewaynes.com
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions: johnstoncountync.org

US: Dunn, NC – Watch a Working Cotton Gin

November is peak season for cotton farmers and downtown Dunn was once known as the largest wagon cotton yard in the country. During the festival, the local cotton gin, that until recent years was located in downtown, offers free tours through the gin so that everyone can see cotton production unfolding before them. Shuttles are offered from the festival site to the gin and back every half hour. nc-cotton-festival

The Festival has two stages for entertainment: featured bands take the Main Stage throughout the day and festival goers also enjoy dancing and karaoke on the second stage. Highlights also include food and craft vendors, Kiddie Land, Petting Zoo and Antique Tractor Show . The event also coincides each year with the Dunn Shriner’s Car Show, where over 100 antique and custom cars compete for best in show.

Location: Downtown Dunn , NC 28334
Date: Sat Nov 5, 2016
Time: 10 – 4 pm
Tel: 910-892-3282
nccottonfestival.com
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions:
dunntourism.org

US: Savannah, GA – Go Hog Wild for Savannah’s Bacon Fest

Get ready, bacon lovers because it’s the 3rd annual Savannah Bacon Fest, celebrating the awesomeness of bacon, returns to River Street from Sept. 2-3.

Local restaurants will be serving up some mouthwatering bacon creations at their booths all festival long.  Some of the items to look forward to are: candied baconchocolate egg with bacon, bacon popcornbacon brownies, pork belly lollypops, and smoked bacon wrapped jalapenos. Anatomy of the Baby Back Rib

Bacon Lovers unite on Historic River Street. The fest starts on with First Friday fireworks at 9:30 pm.  The pork filled festivities will continue on Saturday with loads of bacon, bacon inspired art and bacon products of every kind, regional artist booths, entertainment and family fun. Admission is Free.

Location: Rousakis Riverfront Plaza, 115 East River Street, Savannah, GA 31401
Date: Sept 02 – 03, 2016
Time: Fri 4-10pm, Sat 10-10pm
Tel: 912-234-0295
riverstreetsavannah.com/event/bacon-fest-2
For Regional Accommodations, Restaurants & Attractions:
visitsavannah.com

 

Canada: St Eustache, Quebec – Fresh Honey From the Farm

Here’s Pierre Deschamps letting me taste some fresh honey at his farm in St Eustache north of Montreal. The miellerie has been operating for more than 40 years, and it’s the only honey we ever buy.

Fresh Honey From the Farm

Canada: Montreal – Just For Laughs Comedy Festival

Why not have loads of belly laughs on your next trip? There are a few ways to cut costs and take in the hysterical Montreal Just for Laughs comedy festival inexpensively. Here’s all the FREE events:

On July  21st, Weird Al Yankovic is doing a free outdoor concert as part of  “The Mandatory World Tour”. The Scène Vidéotron will be presenting various free activites at 7pm every day and shows at 9pm.

The Street Arts Festival has acts performing for free in and around Place des Arts. Starting at 1 pm each day, the colorful Place de la famille le Lait will offer its load of shows and activities including a merry-go-round for kids and all the family

Also for your family entertainment, the Labyrinthe V8 will be open from 6pm during weekdays and from noon during weekends.

Every night from 4pm-3am, the Melting Pot, set on the Esplanade de la Place des Arts, invites party goers to enjoy great music presented by various international DJs.

From July 23rd to July 25th, the Zoofest Festival will take place on the Parterre des artistes. Nicknamed Le Spot, this 3-days outdoor celebration will feature the craziest, funniest and talented emerging artists.

At the Le Mondial des Jeux Loto-Québec set on Maisonneuve Blvd, you can get to play various table games and board games. In the center of the Complexe Desjardins, you are invited to discover and play the latest and the classic video games. Plus, you will have the opportunity to show off your skills in friendly competitions. Kids and grown-ups will also be able to show their talents at the Complexe Desjardins in a drawing contest.

www.hahaha.com
http://mondialdesjeux.com/en/

TICKET DEALS

The best deal by far is the OFF-JFL pass. It costs $49.50 and you get to choose 3 tickets to any of the 100 or so OFF-JFL shows. Also included is that each day from July 22-25, you get an additional free ticket for an OFF-JFL show.

OFF-JFL has a lineup of artists performing at smaller venues where the shows are much more intimate, The lineup this year is absolutely incredible. I really laughed at Ethnic Show headliners Alonzo Bodden, Ahmed Ahmed and Gina Yashere who are on this list.

There are a number of package deals for tickets. There are the tourism packages in which you can stay overnight in a hotel, be right downtown in the midst of all the action, and take in the Gala of your choice starting at only $200 (for 2). There are also multi-show passes available which cuts costs.

Last minute tickets can be purchased at the box office on the corner of Jeanne Mance and Sainte-Catherine.

www.hahaha.com

FOOD

Bouffons! Mtl is a gourmet novelty set on Sainte-Catherine street so festival-goers have the chance to experience a full range of new flavors that will definitely live up to anyone taste buds. Meet chefs, enjoy local products and taste delish dishes from the best food-trucks in the city. The festivities will start at noon every day, inside and outside. For the inside action, look for the Bouffons sign near Clark.

At the Melting Pot on the Esplanade de la Place des Arts, there will be a DJ set every evening and look for the 2 for 1 deal on the burger trio. At Arthur,  during Happy Hour 5-7, you can find 2 for one liquid deals.

www.hahaha.com