Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Celebrity Homes in Nashville

Friday, August 16th, 2013

nashville homeFor those of us who consider ourselves pop culture connoisseurs, the Homes of the Stars Tour in Nashville is a definite must.  This driving tour gives travelers the opportunity to drive through some of the most elite neighborhoods that many popular country music stars call home.

Many country stars live in this great city, including a personal favorite, Martina McBride. This tour allows passengers to see her house as well as the homes of Alan Jackson, Brooks & Dunn, and Trisha Yearwood.  The people of America have become so intrigued by the lives of today’s celebrities, and this tour satisfies that desire to take a closer look into the lives of the icons of generations past and present. 

Luckily, this tour includes free hotel pick-up, so there’s no need to pull yourself out of crazy fan mode to concentrate on driving back to the hotel. This tour should make anyone’s short list while they are in Nashville. It’s only about three hours long, but it covers much ground so you definitely don’t want to miss it!

 

Happy star-struck travels!

Fall Fever: Apple Pickin'

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

iStockphoto

With autumn in full swing, we’re sharing some of the items on our seasonal to-do list. We’ve already crossed off Oktoberfest and foliage tours, but this one is my personal favorite. Reserve123 is headquartered in the great southern state of Georgia, so we don’t go apple “picking;” we proudly tackle the task of apple “pickin,” and by George, we sure know how’da pick em’!

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Since Atlanta is smack in the middle of the state, those living in the city have to take a mini roadtrip out to the farm or orchard of their choice, but there are plenty to choose from on the outskirts of the metro area. My personal recommendation is a little further north: Mercier Orchards, in the Blue Ridge Mountains. They offer a U-Pick package every weekend in October, which includes a peck size bag and a tractor ride. For one low price, you pick as many apples as you can stuff inside the tote. When you’re done, head over to the pumpkin patch to select your Jack-O-Lantern canvas.

Mercier Orchards: Monday-Sunday, 7AM-8PM
8660 Blue Ridge Drive
Blue Ridge, GA 30513
Toll Free: 800.361.7731
customer.service@mercier-orchards.com

New England is another great spot for apple picking. City dwellers may have a hard time venturing outside the major areas without their own vehicle, but it’s well worth the ride. Hicks Orchard in Upstate New York (Washington County) has gotten rave reviews, and their apple picking season concludes at the end of this month. Get them before they’re gone! It’s a family owned establishment, so it’s got that “down home” feel. They’ve also got raspberries available for picking.

Hicks Orchard: Monday-Sunday, 9AM-6PM
18 Hicks Road
Granville NY, 12832
Phone: 518-642-1788
apples@hicksorchard.com

In my opinion, the Midwest has the best apple orchards in North America. Of course since I grew up in Michigan, my viewpoint is slightly biased, but still. Michigan-grown McIntosh apples are absolutely perfect in a batch of homemade apple cider, and there are lots of other varieties native to this part of the country. Specifically, East-Central Michigan has an organic orchard in Genesee county: Almar Orchard. There’s also a family picnic area with a petting zoo for the little ones.

Almar Orchard: Monday-Saturday, 9AM-6PM, Sunday 12PM-6PM
1431 Duffield Road
Flushing, MI 48433
(810) 659-6568
ALMARAPPLE@aol.com

Southern California may not experience vast temperature changes this time of year, but there are still apples ripe for the picking. Sky Meadows farms in LA County offers pesticide-free fruit, including apples, apricots, cherries and peaches. The farmers are friendly and always willing to offer up new recipe ideas. Pick them yourself or buy a fresh bushel for some dinnertime pies and cobblers.

Sky Meadow Farms: Saturday & Sunday ONLY, 9AM-5PM
11212 Elizabeth Lake Road
Leona Valley, CA 93551
Phone: 661-270-9524

The Pacific Northwest offers numerous great options for berry picking, but central Washington State is also the home of some amazing apple orchards. Try Bill’s Berry Farm for an organic alternative. Right now, their apples, pumpkins, squash and gourds are ready to ride home with you and add something special to your next meal. The Apple and Pumpkin festival is currently being held every Saturday this month.

Bill’s Berry Farm: Monday-Saturday, while the fruit is ripe
3674 N. County Line Road
Grandview, WA 98930
Phone: 509-882-3200
info@billsberryfarm.com

Hopefully you’re inspired to go pick some apples (and other fresh fruit of your choice) this season. An extensive list of orchard/farm options is available at Pick Your Own, so let us know which location you choose! Always make sure to call or email before you visit, since countless variables affect the availability of each harvest.

Happy pickin’!

Remembering 9/11

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

9/11 Memorial in New York City

Everyone has their story of where they were and what they were doing when they first heard about the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centers. September 11, 2001 instantly became a new moment in history, a moment generations to come will learn about in school curricula. Whether you were on your way to work, packing the kids’ lunches, sitting through a biology lecture, or just waking up for the day, you likely stopped everything, fixated on the nearest television set, and watched in horror as our nation fell victim to a foreign foe. Images of smoke and flames blazing from the twin towers will forever be branded in our minds, and as the buildings collapsed, so did America’s sense of security.

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Simply put, it was scary. A communal fear swept the country, and for the first time in a while, our future was uncertain. Thankfully we didn’t let that fear cripple us; it brought us closer together, and instead of just thinking as individuals, we began to think as a nation. For a brief period of time, our political affiliations didn’t matter. American flags popped up on street corners and doorsteps. Sons, daughters, fathers and mothers were deployed, and we were joined together with a common goal: to stand strong.

Fast forward 11 years, and we all still take a moment to reflect on September 11, 2001. Even as we prepare for another presidential election and allow ourselves to become divided over the candidates, we still remember that ultimately, our unity serves as our strength. So today, Reserve123 would like to recognize America’s resilience. We honor the lives lost and extend a massive “thank you” to every soldier who has fought for our freedoms in any way. Here’s to our continued fortitude.

25 Tours under $25

Friday, December 2nd, 2011

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With over 11,000 tours in over 550 destinations and 85 countries, we have something for everyone. Just because you’re on a tour doesn’t mean you have to spend a great deal of money, and each tour ensures you a unique adventure you wouldn’t have experienced otherwise. Want a tour about coffee? You got it. Want to see J.K Rowling’s Leaky Cauldron in London? No problem. You can always book your tour or activity online or call us at 800-745-1925 to talk with one of our representatives.

I present to you 25 Kristina-approved tours or activities under $25.

1. Ride the Bateaux Sightseeing Cruise form Eiffel Tower in Paris.

2. See AT&T Park the way no else has seen it before on the San Francisco Giants Ball Park Tour.

3. See ghosts in A Ghostly Experience Walking Tour in St. Augustine.

4. Explore and eat around the city of DC on A Taste of DC Tour.

5. Get lost in a haunted mansion with admission to the Winchester Mystery House.

6. Take a historical tour of one of Australia’s most prestigious wineries Penfolds Magill Estate in the Penfolds Magill Wine Tasting Tour.

7. Unravel the mysteries of Harry Lime in Carol Reed’s The Third Man in Footsteps of the Third Man Walking Tour in Vienna.

8. Have a pub crawl and trivia night rolled into one awesome night in the World Greatest Capitol Hill Trivia Pub Crawl Tour.

9. Wave your geek flag high (hooray!) when you take the Harry Potter London Walk.

10. Learn about Munich’s 850 year history in the Munich City Walk with English Garden Tour.

11. Go backstage in one of Nashville’s famed concert halls on the Historic Ryman Auditorium Backstage Guided Tour.

12. Retrace the steps of uncovering the Da Vinci Code in the Da Vinci Code Walking Tour in London.

13. Walk through interactive exhibits to learn about the evolution of espionage in the International Spy Museum Priority Entrance ticket.

14. Wander around the beautiful Middleton Place Plantation that survived the American Revolution, the Civil War, and the 1886 earthquake.

15. Learn the history and secrets of Prague. From the emperors to alchemists, Prague has an interesting past. Take a journey into this old city on the Prague Castle, St. Vitus Cathedral, and Royal Gardens Tour.

16. Take the Hollywood Trolley ride to learn about historic Hollywood.

17. Experience the lights and magic of San Francisco during the holidays aboard a Classic Cable Car.

18. See Branson’s Old Matt’s Homestead transform into a breathtaking holiday wonderland.

19. Purchase a ticket to the Chimney Rock Park to explore North Carolina’s wildlife and rare, indigenous plants.

20. October 31st is over but you can celebrate Halloween every night with the Fright Night Halloween Ghost Tour in Plymouth.

21. Take the Seattle Coffee Crawl and learn the history of coffee and have free tastings at several specialty coffee houses.

22. Discover the only underground wine vaults in the southern hemisphere at the Seppelt Winery.

23. Feed turtles and penguins at the New England Aquarium in Boston.

24. If you’re a novice hiker, take this hike in Phoenix. An experienced hiker/guide, will help you through the Camelback Mountain, Piestewa Peak, South Mountain, or McDowell Mountain.

25. Take a carriage ride and return to a kinder, gentler day as you tour Savannah the way it was meant to be seen.

- Kris
http://reserve123.com

No One is Too Cool for Chicago Architecture

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

Chocolate Gifts from Chocolate.com.

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Two Prudential Building by obi1kenobi1

Two Prudential Building by obi1kenobi1

When people talk about Atlanta, people mention a music artist or heaven forbid, call us ‘Hotlanta’. When people think about New York City, they may think about films, entertainment news, world city.  When people think about Chicago, I think… well The Bean, but more specifically Chicago’s architecture.

Chicago is a large part of American architecture and the city is a beautiful tour of how its architecture has transformed the early 19th century and help create the skylines that we know today. Chicago proudly holds the first modern skyscrapers built with steel frames and large areas of plate glass.

The architect Louis Sullivan realized that these skyscrapers were a new form of architecture, and soon designed buildings that accentuated height. Sullivan’s new style of architecture became known as ‘Chicago School’.

If you’re ever in Chicago, I know it’s so uncool to look up and marvel at the buildings and look like a total tourist, but look up! It’s amazing to see these gigantic forms of art! They coexist with the humdrum monotony of life and people forget that it is a piece of American history and art!

Here are some of my favorite buildings that I hope you get to see when you visit:

The Reliance Building | 1 West Washington Street
Two Prudential Plaza | 180 North Stetson Avenue
CNA Center | 333 South Wabash Avenue
Chicago Building | 7 West Madison Street

We have a number of Chicago tours available, but if you’re looking for architecture tours, look here.

What’s your favorite skyline or favorite building? Please comment below!

- Kris
http://reserve123.com

(source: Wikipedia.org)

Nation's Best Doughnuts

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Thrifty Rent-A-Car System, Inc.

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Doughnuts!

Yes, our tummies may be full, but we still long for the turkey feast from last week. We’re also longing for that long four day weekend we just had. With that being said, let me end our smorgasbord with a greeting from the nation’s favorite office breakfast food – the doughnut!

Let’s hear it for the mighty doughnut. Oh this sweet, sweet confection made by the hands of expert bakers and displayed on the crowning bed of wax paper.

But where do these deep fried, golden delights hail from? Actually, there is much dispute to its history. Some believe that Americans learned about doughnuts from Dutch settlers who also taught us the ways of cookies, cobbler, and apple and cream pie (where would we be without the Dutch?). But there is an American by the name of Hansen Gregory who claims that he is the true daddy of ring-shaped doughnuts when he was trying to solve the problem of greasy doughnuts and their raw centers.

This is a piece of food art by  Peter Anton

 food art by Peter Anton

Here is a quick list of U.S’s best doughnut shops, and of course, we had to add a few of our Southern favorites.

1.Randy’s Donuts – Los Angeles (A very epic scene from Ironman 2 was filmed here)

2.Bouchon Bakery – Yountville (Chef Thomas Keller brings class to the wholesome donut)

3.Voodoo Doughnuts – Portland (Home of the Voodoo doll doughnut)

4.Sublime Doughnuts – Atlanta (The Orange Dream Star is a personal favorite)

5.Doughnut Planet – New York City (Behold, square doughnuts!)

6.Baker’s Pride – Savannah (Best doughnuts in the South!)

7.Shipley Do-Nuts – Houston (A good ol’ fashioned donut shop)

Source of pictured doughnuts: chewonthatblog, unixfineart

Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, MA

Monday, November 21st, 2011

Thrifty Rent-A-Car System, Inc.

Plimoth Plantation

Plimoth Plantation 

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You’ve seen grade school student Thanksgiving plays, you’ve read about them in your textbooks, and you’ve probably have seen a Charlie Brown special about it, but when you visit Plimoth Plantation, you’ll experience the most realistic account of the pilgrim life.

The Plimoth Plantation is a living museum that offers a variety of activities for visitors to see and do on the pilgrim life. The 17th Century English Village is part of the Plimoth Plantation and is a recreation of the small colony that took place near the Plymouth Harbor.At this site, the year is 1627 and visitors can explore the town and watch and interact with ‘role players’ who act, speak, and dress from the colonial era. You can watch them do daily tasks such as cooking, planting, blacksmithing, and animal husbandry.

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A woman doing daily errands. 

If watching someone sweeping a house with a homemade broom doesn’t get you excited, the coolest part of this attraction is the interaction. You can ask the ‘pilgrims’ any questions about their religious views, education, parenting, and even their relationship with the Native People. All the recreations are built on first-hand or second-hand records, accounts, and articles from that time period. It is truly a place that prides their authenticity and really feels like you stepped back in time.

The real life exhibits also feature the lives of the Wampanoag Homesite. Unlike the English Village, the Wampanoag Homesite has modern day Native People dressed in traditional clothing. They can give you the modern perspective of the Wampanoag people. You are more than welcome to ask questions about their history, their traditions, music, or dance.

Another popular activity at the plantation is entering the Mayflower II replica. From the solid oak timbers to the hand-colored maps, the details of the ship have been meticulously hand-crafted to make sure visitors feel like they’re entering the real Mayflower.

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Visitors talking to pilgrims and Native People. 

Other than their interactive exhibits, there is a craft center where you can meet modern day artisans who use 17th century tools and materials to create objects from that time period.You can visit the rare breeds animals program where you can see many historic breeds of sheep, goats, and cows. There is also the Plimoth Cinema!Interestingly enough, the plantation screens foreign and independent films at their orientation theater during the late afternoons and evenings. It is Plymouth’s #1 Art House Cinema!

If you’re interested in visiting the Plimoth Plantation, hurry and reserve your tickets today. They’re open from late March to November, but they get especially busy near Thanksgiving. Please visit our website or call us at 800-745-1925.

- Kris
http://reserve123.com

1st picture is from this website.
2nd picture is from this website.
3rd picture is from this website.

Playing with Heavy Machinery in Las Vegas

Monday, November 14th, 2011

TripMama

Probably the happiest man driving over a mound of dirt

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As children, the world was one giant sandbox to play in. There were no worries about bills, monthly reports, or morning traffic. The biggest worry you may have had was to figure out which lunchable you wanted to bring to lunch. We can’t promise you that we’ll take all your adult responsibilities away, but we can help you find a bigger sandbox.

Welcome to Las Vegas’s heavy equipment playground. These two activities will let your operate a 315 excavator, or in ‘Kris terms’, a metal brontosaurus, or a D5G bulldozer. The novelty of shoveling mass amounts of dirt into a pile does get a bit tiresome, so they made activities that will challenge you with various exercises that deal with moving dirt and heavy objects.

One of  the exercises

One of the exercises you’ll get to do

Before you get to jump in one of these babies, there’s a classroom safety and equipment orientation. After you’re given your hardhat, you continue with your training in an in-cab orientation. With a two way headset, you perform a couple of warm ups. Now, it’s time for the Big Dig! You carry out various exercises and strut your stuff with one major dirt excavation and two hand-eye coordination and agility exercises.

When all is said and done, you bring home a very official Certificate of Accomplishment to hang on the wall, refrigerator, hallway, or even in your office. ;) If you’re heading to Las Vegas and the casinos are becoming a bit too cliché, come out and relive your childhood… sans the Velcro shoes.

To book a three hour session with the D5G bulldozer, click here.

To book a three hour session with the 315 excavator, click here.

An excavator doing its thing… stacking tires.

- Kris
http://reserve123.com

Halloween Costume Contest

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Say Thank You with fresh fruit, bakery treats and towering sweets from 1800baskets.com - 468x60

We like to celebrate Halloween as a week long event, at least, in our blog. ;)

Not only did we celebrate the holiday with food, we also dressed up for our costume contest! We had flappers, demons, spies wandering through our office as we worked throughout the day anticipating for 5:00 p.m. to roll around and start our festive office after party! Ha ha, just kidding… or am I?

Allison dressed up as a flapper

Barbara is wearing a witchy disguise in the office.

We have Janice dressed up as… well, I’m not really sure. I think the office narrowed it down to an American patriot, an Occupy Wall Street protestor, and umm… we’re just not sure. 

John dressed up in classic Halloween garb – a demon giving you a thumbs up. 

Kris dressed up as a rocket because there aren’t enough rockets in the world.

Lauren dressed as a seductive vampire (who can resist a girl in a cape?).

Michael dressed as the better half of the Twilight series, Edward.

Michelle wore a pretty cool skeleton costume. Get it?!

Tony dressed up as the suave 007.

We were happy to see people participate in the contest, but there was only one winner and that winner is…

Me!

Hooray, I won! *does the happy dance* I win a night in the Hotel Midtown. I have 24 hours in a room to myself that is free from any responsibilities. What shall I do, what shall I do…

Perhaps do a little bed jumping. Make signs for the my window so the people can read it from below. Maybe write my name in lights and see if I can see my name from the ground.  Swim about half a lap in their indoor pool because I’ll get so tired I’m afraid I’ll drown if I try to do a whole lap. Get my shoes shined…

What do you think I should do with my free night in a hotel? Comment below, por favor!

- Kris
http://reserve123.com

Tis the Season for Goose Hunting

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

BookingBuddy

Yup, that's a cat... and his name is Goose. ;) Don't ask.

Yup, that’s a cat and his name is Goose. ;)

It is the beginning of another Goose Hunt! Goose Hunt is about hunting the Goose badge on our website Reserve123.com.It’s a badge that has been placed on a new tour that all of us at Reserve 123 are pretty excited about. It has been “Goose Approved” and is waiting to be found by you!

We’ll help you along with the hunt by giving clues on our Twitter and Facebook, so if you’re not our fan or follower (or any kind of status that begins with an ‘F’ evidently), what are you waiting for? Email your answer to Kristina@reserve123.com with the subject – ‘Goose Hunt’ and a link to the tour page with the Goose badge.

The winner of Goose Hunt will get you $25 off any tour!

Some freebie hints:
- First off, we know that Goose is on a tour page, so he won’t be chilling out in our ‘About Us’ section, though you’re more than welcome to read it!
- Don’t forget, he’s on a badge, so he will be located on the top of the tour page.

Ok, enough freebies. Here is clue #1: The tour is in a gorgeous city where people prefer a different mode of transportation instead of cars.

Good luck with the Goose Hunt and stay tuned for the next clue!

October 27 – Clue #2: The tour is in a city that has a museum where they display a painting that was once maliciously sprayed with acid.

- Kris
http://reserve123.com


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