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Showing posts with the label kayak

Ready for Rockford

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I was looking for someplace not too far to go for a last-minute trip. I had never been to Rockford, Illinois, and a quick look at the tourism website showed me there was a lot to do there. After getting in touch with Andrea Cook, the CVB’s Associate Director of Marketing & Communications, I found out there was more than I ever imagined. Andrea put together a great itinerary for Brittany, Amanda, and me. It had the right amount of adventure for them and accessible and enjoyable things for me. We also had a big selection of restaurants to try out together. Our home for the weekend was the Radisson Hotel and Conference Center.   The location was central to the places we were visiting, and our room was big for a standard hotel room. We had lunch at Mary’s Market CafĂ© & Bakery . The description is in the name as there was plenty to chose from. Everything there was made from scratch, including a variety of breads, and used mostly local ingredients. The sa

Fairmont, Kayaking and BBQ in Chicago

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Brittany and I were heading to Chicago for a quick getaway. We had an early morning adventure with the team at Shedd Aquarium so decided to stay over the night before. I had never stayed at the Fairmont Chicago before and was excited when they decided to host me. It is a luxurious hotel in an ideal location, overlooking Millennium Park and Lake Michigan. As someone with allergies, I also loved the idea of their “Pure Room,” which are hypoallergenic, using sanitizing technologies to improve the air quality. Our room was great, and we enjoyed dinner and cocktails at The Bar, the hotel’s lounge. In the morning, we headed to the Kayak Chicago location. It was a beautiful day for a trip on the Chicago River and I was a bit jealous that I was not longer able to do anything like that. I did get to watch and photograph, as Brittany learned about the Kayak for Conservation program through the Shedd Aquarium. This was just introduced in 2018 and is rapidly exp

History, Food and Kayaks in Sault Ste Marie

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After a good night’s sleep in our spacious suite at the Superior Place in Sault Ste. Marie, Brittany, Jamie, and I got ready for our morning breakfast meeting. We were getting together with Linda Hoath, Executive Director of the Sault Area Convention and Visitors Bureau . She had graciously put together this trip for us last minute after one in a nearby area did not work out. We met Linda at the Lock View Restaurant downtown. It was right across the street from the Soo Locks and you could see both the American and Canadian sides from the building. Everything on the menu looked great, but our host recommended the pancakes and I went for the chocolate chip ones. They were as good as she said. The other ladies had eggs and we were all quite full as we learned more about the area and the plans about other activities on our list. After we finished eating, we walked around town and looked through some more shops. Linda pointed out the Michigan Made sto

Kayaking, Music and Lots of Food in Branson

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We got up early at the Radisson Hotel for our first full day in Branson and had a quick breakfast. Marsha, Brittany, Amanda and I got in the car and headed to Table Rock Lake, where we were going kayaking at Flat Creek Resort in Cape Fear . It was a scenic drive on winding roads, something we didn’t see in Central Illinois. Flat Creek Resort is Just outside the city of Branson and we had been invited to check it out, specifically the kayaking. It was something new they started this season and everyone was excited to be out on the brand-new boats, especially Brittany, who was trying stand up fishing from a kayak for the first time. The staff helped us get started. After Brittany did the fishing kayak for a while, she joined Amanda, while Marsha and I in the other tandem kayak . They were much sturdier than kayaks I had previously been in. It was the perfect partly cloudy and warm day to be out on the water. It was the most relaxing hour I’d had i

Kayaks in Sonoma and Tasting Time in Marin

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I usually make a few trips a year to Northern California to visit family and wine country. This year has been more hectic than usual and I haven’t made it at all, so as soon as I had the chance, I was ready to visit some two of my favorite Marin eateries before heading off to Napa and Sonoma. The weekend actually started with a wine country preview, but not my usual kind. I had my first taste of kayaking on the Russian River in Healdsburg thanks to my friend Tracy. I had lots of fun and wish I could have stayed out there as long as my niece and nephew, both of whom are quite the adventurous athletes. I realized just how beautiful this area of Sonoma was and I had just driven by it all for years on my way to wineries. I vowed to do some more exploration in the future of more than just the grapes along the Russian River. While I did discover something new in Sonoma, I was perfectly happy returning to the old while spending the weekend in Marin. I first visited the