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Oh, My Gourd! The Best Pumpkin Events Across The United States.

Some places around this great country take celebrating the pumpkin to new levels with these unbelievable pumpkin related events.

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It’s Halloween season which means it is time to celebrate all things pumpkin. Pumpkin spiced products of all shapes and sizes are being pumped out in every direction. Jack-o-lanterns are being carved and pumpkin pies are being doled out left and right. The pumpkin is a magical gourd that really gives off the feeling of fall. You will celebrate the season every time you see a jack-o’-lantern and when it comes to pumpkins there really is so much to enjoy. Some places around this great country take celebrating the orange gourd to new levels with these unbelievable pumpkin related events.

 

The Great Jack-O’-Lantern Blaze
This fantastic event is held at the Van Cortlandt Manor, a historic place in New York. Here you will find thousands of jack-o’-lanterns made up into some absolutely breathtaking figures. Each jack-o’-lantern has its own face but is also a part of something much bigger. Here you will find a statue of liberty made out of jack-o’-lanterns, dinosaurs and even a carousel that somehow spins. You can enjoy a walk across a pumpkin bridge and hang out in a planetarium that will seriously flip you out.

 

World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off
The beautiful Half Moon Bay is the scene of this insane competition. The Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off brings farmers from around the country together to show off who can grow the biggest gourd in the world. The only way they can move these giant gourds around is with forklifts and special straps and you will be astounded by just how big these things can get. Last year’s winner was a pumpkin that weighed 2,363 lbs. Now that is a lot of pumpkin pies!

 

The Pumpkin Festival
Now, this festival might not have the most creative name, but that doesn’t mean it’s not an unbelievable site worth seeing. This fest has set the record 8 different times for having the most jack-o’-lanterns lit at one time. That is pretty unbelievable. ONce you check out all of the jack-o-lanterns then be sure to give the children’s costume parade a look. There is nothing cuter than a bunch of children marching around in their little costumes. You can also see some super fun dance performances that are dedicated to the awesome season of Autumn.

 

Damariscotta Pumpkinfest & Regatta
If you’ve ever seen a pumpkin catapult then you know it is something that has to be seen to be believed. You get to see these giant gourds launched high into the air only to come slamming down onto the ground and breaking into a million slimy pieces. There is also a pumpkin derby as well which is definitely a crackup. The last event is the best though, it is called the Pumpkin Regatta. In this race, competitors make boats out of giant pumpkins and race around an obstacle course. There is one race for paddleboats and one for powerboats. Both races are a true crackup to witness.

 

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Destinations

Underrated Travel Destinations For The Holiday Season

If you’re looking to get out of town and take a vacation this holiday season, look no further than these amazing and beautiful destinations. 

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For a lot of people, Christmas means going to home be with family. But for others, the holiday season is the perfect time to take a vacation! Everyone has a least a few days off anyway, so why not get out of town for a few days and check out some place you’ve never been before. If the latter sounds like a good idea to you, then check out this list of some of the best places in America to visit during the Christmas season.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

HERSHEY PARK, PENNSYLVANIA

Hershey Park, Pennsylvania is practically the Christmas capital of America. They have one of the most elaborate light shows you’ll ever find with over 200,000 lights in all, and you can take them in in all their glory while dancing and singing along to your favorite Christmas songs.

Hershey Park also offers Christmas-themed roller-coasters, cookie workshops, and a very convincing Santa thanks to his nine live reindeer! So if you’re already on the East Coast, or if you feel like going across the country this holiday season, Hershey Park is definitely worth a visit.

GRAND WAILEA, MAUI, HAWAII

I think, for a lot of people in America, Hawaii is the last place they think of when they think about Christmas. But it really is a great option for vacation over the Christmas holiday. And Grand Wailea in Maui is the best place in Hawaii to spend Christmas.

The theme there that time of year is “Tis the Season of Aloha,” so you know they take it seriously. And when you see Santa show up in a 25-foot outrigger canoe to kick off the tree lighting ceremony, you’ll understand why Grand Wailea is such a great place to spend Christmas.

ASPEN, COLORADO

If you’re like me and prefer the “winter wonderland” elements of the holiday season, then Aspen, Colorado is an awesome Christmas vacation destination for you. I mean, Aspen (and Colorado in general) is a beautiful place regardless of the time of year, but all those snow-covered mountains in the winter just make it a truly breathtaking sight to see.

And separate from all the great skiing and hot chocolate drinking you can do, they still have the great Christmas tradition of the Little Nell Tree Lighting ceremony. Which, naturally, includes plenty of carolers and an appearance by Santa Claus and his real live reindeer.

COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA

Similar to Grand Wailea in Maui, Cocoa Beach, Florida is an awesome beach town to check out during the holiday season. Especially if you prefer warmer weather and relaxing on the beach. Everyone in Cocoa Beach is full of Christmas cheer every year, so you’ll see plenty of surfing Santas, holiday-themed stilt walkers, and the best part of all, the annual holiday boat parade.

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH

Utah is right up there with Colorado for being one of the most beautiful states in the country. So, naturally, their biggest and brightest city, Salt Lake City, is a wonderful place to spend Christmas. Every year they host the Dickens Christmas Festival that features absolutely stunning light displays, Olde English shops, fortune tellers, and Father Christmas himself. Not to mention the yearly performance by the Utah Symphony, and the Hogle Zoo, which puts on its own incredible light decorations every year.

NORTH POLE, ALASKA

What better place to spend Christmas than the home of Santa Claus himself, North Pole! Well, to be fair, this isn’t that North Pole. But the too-quaint-too-handle Alaska town of North Pole is a beautiful place to be around Christmas. Their annual Winter Festival includes a bevy of fun activities and entertainment, including breathtaking ice sculptures and awe-inspiring firework shows.

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Destinations

Most Extravagant Rest Stops and Gas Stations Across The Globe

These are the best rest stops and gas stations from around the world that will make your stop a paradise instead of just a necessity.

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When you’re on the road one major source of entertainment is every gas station or rest stop where you decide to take a break. Some rest stops are a lot of fun while others just don’t live up to the excitement you have in your head. Usually, people have very low expectations for rest stops, as they should, they’re just there so you can hit the can, buy a Snapple and hop back on the road.

But some rest stops offer a magical wonderland that you could spend hours in. When you find a good rest stop it’s like you’ve hit gold. Suddenly your long boring road trip seems all worth it, and you haven’t even reached your destination yet.

These are the best rest stops and gas stations from around the world that will make your stop a paradise instead of just a necessity.

POPS, ARCADIA, OKLAHOMA

Pops is pretty easy to see thanks to the 66-foot-tall soda bottle that is in front of the station. At night the bottle even lights up which makes it even easier to see and probably attracts billions of moths. It makes sense that the bottle is 66 feet high considering it is on Route 66. No matter what you’re looking for, you will enjoy your stop at Pops in Arcadia. We recommend hitting the restaurant that has over 700 types of sodas and seltzers. Now that’s refreshing!

ALZU PETROPORT, NEAR MIDDELBURG, SOUTH AFRICA

How about a rest stop with rhinos, ostriches, and buffalos? Does that sound like something you’d be interested in? Well then head to Alzu Petroport which is adjacent to a wildlife preserve. This means after you hit the restrooms and gas up the ride, you can stare in awe of the many animals you can see directly from the rest stop. Now that sounds like a good place to take a break and eat lunch.

TRAIL’S TRAVEL CENTER, ALBERT LEA, MINNESOTA

This seems like a regular gas station from the front, but when you walk in you quickly notice that this place holds laundry, church services, and even a movie theater. So if you’re getting tired of driving, pop in here and catch a flick, or get married. Either activity is totally possible at Trail’s Travel Center. There is also a huge selection of whiskey, the biggest in all of Minnesota right here so if you’re a fan of the brown liquor then Trail’s is for you.

GAZOLINE PETROL, CUNEO, ITALY

Usually, when you take a picture of a rest area it’s because of something horrifying you found inside a toilet bowl. But at the Gazoline Petrol, you will take picture after picture of the building itself because the architecture is simply stunning.

ORIVAL GAS STATION, ORIVAL, BELGIUM

This is considered one of the world’s most beautiful gas station and it is easy to see why. There are beautifully landscaped parks as well as expertly curated art galleries. Usually, the only art you see at rest stops lies on mud flaps but not at Orival Gas Station. You won’t want to just stop at Orival, you’ll want to stay there and never ever leave.

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Destinations

The Best Vacation Spots For Coffee Snobs (Like Me!)

If people describe you as a coffee fanatic then these are some destinations you simply have to see so you can spend your vacation in pure caffeinated bliss.

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Ah, that glorious brown liquid that helps us arise in the morning and keeps us chugging along through the workday. Where would we be without that delicious wake-up fuel we chug down in the A.M.?

Coffee is great and a necessary tool many of us use. But to some people, this special drink is more than just a simple beverage they sip on to rise and shine in the morning. To some people, coffee is their entire universe. They know what part of the world the best beans are from, how to roast them just right and the perfect method of preparation to keep the pH balance just right.

To these people coffee isn’t a drink, it’s a way of life.

If that sounds like you, if people describe you as a coffee fanatic then these are some destinations you simply have to see so you can spend your vacation in pure caffeinated bliss.

ETHIOPIA

So you’re a coffee head, then why not go to where it was invented? Experience some history with this beloved drink by spending time in its birthplace and sipping on a cup or two. Ethiopia is home to arabica coffee which is one of the more popular varieties, but you knew that.

What you may not know is that coffee was introduced to Europe and Arab countries in the 17th century by traders where it quickly took over as one of the favorite drinks around the world. You can learn this and a whole lot more while being nice and alert in beautiful Ethiopia.

VIENNA COFFEE HOUSES

There’s no question, Austria’s capital loves their coffee and their cafes. Vienna is filled with cafes. So filled there’s absolutely no room for cream. They all have a great history to them as well as great coffee. These cafes are great places to sit and people watch as you sip a beverage or two. Plus, Vienna offers plenty of amazing things to do all around town that will be easy for you to do once you spend a few hours at one of these cafes.

WORLD LATTE ART COMPETITION

Don’t you love it when your barista hands over your latte and it has a beautiful picture poured into the foam? Well, now you can figure out just how good your local barista really is when you compare them to the master baristas in the World Latte Art Championship.

But even if latte art isn’t your thing, if you’re more of an americano person then you can still find other great coffee competitions. There is the World Barista Championship, the World Coffee Roasting Championship and even the World Coffee in Good Spirits Championship, all of which are hosted in various locations around the world.

THE ORIGINAL STARBUCKS

Head to the Pacific Northwest and check out the first Starbucks ever located in the Pike Place Market in Seattle. This is a popular tourist attraction and there is usually a line coming out the door. You can listen to the musicians that play out front and do some amazing shopping around Pike Place as well.

Seattle is known for its coffee so if you don’t feel like waiting or don’t like Starbucks you will certainly find an amazing cafe nearby that will satisfy all your caffeine related needs.

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