Thursday, July 7, 2011

Visiting Virginia Beach? Yorktown is worth a Day Trip.


If you are visiting Virginia Beach or the surrounding Hampton Roads, Virginia area you might want to take a short trip over to Yorktown and visit the Yorktown Battlefield, the site where the American Revolution was decidedly won.

Yorktown Battlefield known as the Colonial National Historic Park is within a short drive from many Hampton Roads areas including Virginia Beach Norfolk, Newport News, Suffolk, Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk. It’s no surprise that Yorktown turned out to be the location of the seminal battle for America, since Hampton Roads is home to the original settling posts of England’s early settlers, including Jamestown. The origin of the name "Hampton Roads" is some 400 years old and is a descriptive term referring to the deep natural waterways (roads) of the James River, Elizabeth River, and Nansemond Rivers that lead direct to Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic and then across to England. In 1620, fourteen years after Jamestown was settled, settlers already established the first shipyard in America at Sewell's Point in Norfolk. Yorktown was a major city by the 1700’s and was the locus of a thriving shipbuilding industry, the British Navy and commercial trade.

During the Revolutionary War (and even up to the time of the Civil War) the area and its ports were important strategic locations from which naval power could be projected along the inhabited Eastern Seaboard. Even today, Hampton Roads retains its significance as one the United States' most important military and industrial defense areas.

So, returning to the Battle of Yorktown, it is no surprise that it was a prime candidate for a Revolutionary Battle to be fought - the other being New York.

Visiting Yorktown Battle Field
Yorktown consists of a quaint city that retains its historical character and the Yorktown Battle Field which is located on its outskirts. The Yorktown Battle Field Area is a large open field with various berms which remain visible along with redoubts. There is also the Moore House, the site of surrender negotiations between General Washington and General Lafayette and the British General, Lord Cornwallis and Surrender Field, each worth visiting. What makes Yorktown really worth the visit are the tours put on by the Park Rangers. They will bring the battle to life and are walking history books. Animated and full of passion, they provide great insight into the battle of Yorktown and explaining the situation leading up to the battle, the armaments in use, the strategy and tactics used by the American and French allies, and those of the British. You will learn that contrary to Hollywood depictions, the battle was an artillery duel and battle of attrition. Infantry fighting was limited to storming two British held redoubts that proved pivotal in capturing key ground that enabled the allied artillery to pound the British defenses into submission. Perhaps ordained from above, you will learn about a series of most unfortunate events and sheer bad luck that conspired against the British at every turn.

A most pleasant and beautiful place; it is worth a visit for every American wishing to reconnect with America’s founding. You will embrace and appreciate the heroism and sacrifice of our early leaders and patriot statesmen. Men of action, they risked all for an idea and bestowed upon us a most generous blessing of liberty.

For more information on the Yorktown Battlefield, visit the National Park Service site at: http://www.nps.gov/yonb/index.htm.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Remembering Japan’s Disaster Victims – Washington DC’s National Cherry Blossom Festival

On March 28, 2011, the Washington DC National Cherry Blossom Festival will start and run for two weeks through the April 10, 2011.  During this period, over 200 cultural performances and 90 special events will take place.    Every year here at Washingtondchotels.com we receive thousands of bookings from visitors stay at Washington DC hotels, many for the National Cherry Blossom Festival

Cherry BlossomsAs thousands of cherry trees dotting the Washington DC tidal basin come into bloom and great us with their stunning beauty, we should take a moment to remember the massive suffering and deprivations of the Japanese people after their devastating earthquake and tsunami.  Japan is one of America’s greatest friends and allies, and we encourage you to make donations to Japanese Relief funds.

Washington, DC’s cherry trees were a gift of friendship from Japan in 1912.  3020 Japanese cherry trees representing 12 different varieties were specially cultivated from Tokyo’s prized cherry tree park along the Arakawa River in Adachi Ward, and donated to the United States.   The first two trees, Yoshino cherry trees, were planted by the First Lady, Helen Herron Taft, and the wife of the Japanese Ambassador, Viscountess  Chinda, on the northern bank of the Tidal Basin on March 27, 1912.  These original trees are located approximately 125 feet south of Independence Avenue, SW near the John Paul Jones statute.   After planting the trees, Mrs. Taft presented a bouquet of "American Beauty" roses to Viscountess Chinda in a small ceremony.  This ceremony became the start of Washington DC’s annual Cherry Blossom Festival.

If you intend on visiting Washington DC this spring and happen to see cherry trees in blossom, stop and remember our Japanese friends and take a moment to make a donation.  Millions are counting on you.

Japanese Earthquake Relief Funds – Where to Donate

American Red Cross Japan Earthquake Donations or Text “REDCROSS” to 90999 to Give $10

Salvation Army Japan Earthquake Donations or Text “QUAKE” to 80888 to Give $10.

National Cherry Blossom Festival Schedule of Events:

DAILY EVENTS:

Performances on the Stage at Sylvan Theater (begins at Noon daily)

Macy's Cherry Blossom Show (Mon. - Sat., 10 AM - 8 PM; Sun., Noon - 6 PM)

SCHEDULED EVENTS: (also based on information from the Official National Cherry Blossom Festival)

Sun

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Sat

 

 

 

March 23

Pink Tie Party at The Mayflower

6:30 PM - start of VIP experience

7-10 PM - regular Party begins

 

 

March 26

Opening Day at National Building Museum

Family Day (10 AM - 3:30 PM)

Opening Ceremony (4 - 5:30 PM)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 27

Blossom Kite Festival (10 AM - 4 PM)

March 28

March 29

March 30

Sustainable Sushi Tasting at National Geographic (7-9 PM)

March 31

April 1

April 2

Southwest Waterfront Fireworks Festival (1 - 8:30 PM)

National Cherry Blossom Festival Fireworks Show (8:30 - 9 PM)

Cherry Blast: Art + Music Dance Party

(8 PM - Midnight)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 3

Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Run (7:40 AM – 11:30 AM)

Blossoms and Baseball: Washington Nationals v. Atlanta Braves (1:35 PM)

 Lantern Lighting Ceremony (3-5 PM)

April 4

April 5

 

April 6

 

April 7

National Cherry Blossom Festival Gala Dinner Cruise (6-10 PM)

 

 

April 8

Petal Fest & Performance Stage on Woodrow Wilson Plaza (Noon - 7 PM)

NCSS Grand Ball and Sushi Reception

(6 PM - Midnight)

April 9

National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade® (10 AM - Noon)

JASW's Sakura Matsuri - Japanese Street Festival (11 AM - 6 PM)

Petal Fest & Performance Stage on Woodrow Wilson Plaza (Noon - 6 PM)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 10

Cherry Blossom Family Bike Rally and Ride (11 AM - 3 PM)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday, February 25, 2011

Staying at Boston Hotel in March - Check out Boston Restaurant Week

If you are checking into a  Boston Hotel during the weeks of March 6th-11th or March 13th -18th you’re in luck.   These dates are this year’s Boston Restaurant Week® program sponsored by the Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau.  Boston Restaurant Week ® offers great savings on over 226 of Boston’s restaurants, including some of Boston’s best restaurants.   Under the program, participating Boston Restaurants offer deals on fixed meal price offerings. 
·         2 Course Lunch - $15.11
·         3 Course Lunch - $20.11
·         3 Course Dinner - $33.11

Note:  These prices are per person and do not include drinks, taxes and gratuities.
Not only will your stomach and wallet benefit, Boston Restaurant Week is also a charitable event.   American Express will donate 25 cents per transaction, up to $5000 when diners use their American Express® Cards at participating Bosons restaurants.  In addition, participating Boston restaurants have donated one hundred dollar certificates which will auctioned at www.rwbauction.com starting on March 6, 2011.  All charitable proceeds will benefit the Women's Lunch Place.
Save an additional $20 on Boston Restaurants – as an American Express Card member you can register to receive a $20 gift card when you dine three or more times during Restaurant Week Boston® and spend a minimum of $150 at participating Boston restaurants.  Register here:  AMEX Boston Restaurant Week Discount Card.
For a list of participating Boston Restaurants visit the participating Boston Restaurants Guide.

Monday, February 14, 2011

When is Mardi Gras?

When does Mardi Gras start? Good question.  The Mardi Gras schedule for 2011 is listed below.

Mardi Gras marks the close of a season which officially starts on the Epiphany (Three kings Day) and ends on the eve of Ash Wednesday. Carnivals (lavish parades and parties operated by Krewes) start as much as 2 weeks prior to the actual Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday). Mardi Gras reaches its finale late Tuesday Night and then New Orleans goes quiet as the season of Lent begins with Ash Wednesday. In fact, it is the only night when New Orleans’ round the clock nightlife shuts down and the French Quarter is cleared. The official close of Mardi Gras is Midnight and the New Orleans Police will clear the streets.

For travelers from out of town, the prime Mardi Gras party period really gets into high gear the Friday before Fat Tuesday and continues non-stop through Tuesday night. For newbies to Mardi Gras, one of the best parades is the Zulu Krewe. Decked out in African garb and elaborate floats, not only are beads and doubloons generously and amply thrown out to the masses, but if you're lucky you might catch a coconut head, rubber spear or other neat trinket. Also, most people don't realize most parades occur in Uptown New Orleans with post parade partying occurring in the FRench Quarter and other locales throughout New Orleans.

Finding hotel lodging for Mardi Gras is a real challenge. If you are thinking of taking a trip to Mardi Gras, you might want to consider a Mardi Gras lodging by finding a New Orleans Hotel outside of the French Quarter. A particularly nice area is New Orleans’ Garden District which is close to the French Quarter is relatively safe.  

Cick here to search for New Orleans Hotels.

Click here for more information of Mardi Gras events from the New Orleans Visitor's Bureau

MARDI GRAS SCHEDULE 2011

Information courtsey of the NOCVB. Time and information could change for unforseen circumstances.


Mardi Gras - Sunday, February 20, 2011

Krewe
Location (unless New Orleans is stated it is another city)
Time
Metairie
12:00 PM
Perseus
Slidell
1:00 PM



Mardi Gras -Friday, February 25, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Oshun
Uptown New Orleans
6:00 PM
Westbank
6:30 PM
Mandeville
7:00 PM
Metairie
7:00 PM
Atlas
Metairie
7:30 PM





Mardi Gras -Saturday, February 26, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Westbank
11:00 AM
Westbank
11:45 AM
Uptown New Orleans
2:00 PM
Nemesis
St. Bernard
4:00 PM
Caesar
Metairie
6:00 PM
Covington
6:00 PM
Uptown New Orleans
6:00 PM
Slidell
6:30 PM
Pygmalion
Uptown New Orleans
6:45 PM



Sunday, February 27, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Alla
West Bank
12:00 PM
Uptown New Orleans
12:00 PM
Dionysus
Slidell
1:00 PM
Uptown New Orleans
1:15 PM
Rhea
Metairie
2:00 PM
Thor
Metairie
3:00 PM



Mardi Gras -Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Druids
Uptown
6:30 PM




Mardi Gras -Thursday, March 3, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Uptown New Orleans
5:45 PM
Chaos
Uptown New Orleans
6:30 PM
Uptown New Orleans
6:30 PM


Mardi Gras Weekend Starts - (Friday through Tuesday Night)


Mardi Gras -Friday, March 4, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Uptown New Orleans
6:00 PM
Uptown New Orleans
6:30 PM
Slidell
6:30 PM
Mandeville
7:00 PM
Lyra


Morpheus Excellent
Uptown New Orleans
7:00 PM
Centurions
Metairie
7:00 PM



Mardi Gras -Saturday, March 5, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Westbank
10:45 AM
Iris
Uptown New Orleans
11: 00 AM
Uptown New Orleans
12:00 PM
Endymion - Excellent
Mid-City
4:15 PM
Isis
Metairie
6:30 PM



Mardi Gras -Sunday, March 6, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Uptown New Orleans
11:00 AM
Uptown New Orleans
11:45 AM
Uptown New Orleans
12:00 PM
Bacchus - * Excellent
Uptown New Orleans
5:15 PM
Metairie
5:30 PM



Monday, March 7, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Uptown New Orleans
5:15 PM
Orpheus
Uptown New Orleans
6:00 PM
Zeus
Metairie
6:30 PM



Mardi Gras  - March 8, 2011

Krewe
Location
Time
Zulu *Excellent
Uptown New Orleans
8:00 AM
Rex * Excellent
Uptown New Orleans
10:00 AM
Elks Orleanians
Uptown New Orleans
follows Rex
Crescent City * Excellent
Uptown New Orleans
follows Rex
Metairie
10:00 AM
Krewe of Jefferson
Metairie
follows Argus
Elks Jeffersonians
Metairie
follows Argus
Grela
Westbank - Gretna
11:00 AM