What could be better for Valentine’s Day than a pic-a-nic? Celebrating the weekend o’love with the bear himself at a Jellystone Park™ Camp-Resort! At Jellystone Park Hill Country in Canyon Lake, Texas, February 15-17 is Valentine’s Day Special Weekend, offering two nights for the price of one on all accommodations. Treat your special someone to Texas-sized hospitality and a quiet, relaxing getaway perfect for sweethearts. Farther north, check out the Valentine’s Getaway at Jellystone Park Mammoth Cave in beautiful Kentucky. Also February 15-17, the Mammoth Cave team invites you to escape from the winter chill and rekindle the flame by cuddling up together in one of their new Cumberland Cabins, which feature cozy electric fireplaces. Check with your favorite year-round park to see what they’ve got cookin’ for the most romantic weekend of the year!
Vacation is about exploring somewhere new and escaping the rigors of everyday life, and what better way to explore than in a camper or motor home. The comforts of home and the open road combine to create the ultimate RV vacation experience. Road warriors take advantage of good food, ultimate freedom and an inexpensive mode of transportation. Oftentimes after a trip filled with exotic terrain and fun activities, the road-trip jokes and conversations leave a lasting impression. RV traveling emphasizes comradery and leads to lifelong memories.
Before you hit the highway, school yourself on these time-tested road rules.
RV Vacation Rules:
Spring for Insurance: Whether your renting an RV or driving your own, vehicle insurance will cover your RV in the case of an accident on the road. Be careful inside, however, many road insurance providers don’t cover interior damage.
Inspect the RV: You can’t eliminate the risk of a breakdown, but checking the RV’s tire pressure and liquid levels will start your trip with the right foot forward. Fill up tires to their ideal pressure, which is listed on the tire wall, and check that oil and coolant levels are stable.
Plan for the Worst: Hopefully, you never need to use it, but a thorough medical kit is a necessity when traveling cross country. Basic items such bandages, ibuprofen and and gauze should be included as well as more involved items like an EpiPen and burn relief ointment.
Map Your Stops: Positioned near some of the most beautiful terrain in the U.S., campgrounds offer a great opportunity to meet like-minded travelers. The wind may blow you in a unique direction, but planned stops will help you make the most of your trip. GocampingAmerica.com lists information on RV parks across the U.S.
Don’t Pack Too Much: Only pack enough clothes and food for a few days. You can do laundry at campgrounds and buy food in towns you visit. A camper may feel like home, but that doesn’t mean you have to bring your entire wardrobe.
Don’t Overbuy: When you purchase souvenirs, take care not to overcrowd your motor home; you can ship large items home.
Limit Driving: Try not to drive more than 400 miles each day. Take the time to stop and enjoy sites. Too much driving dulls your senses and increases risk plus, vacation is about enjoying the ride, so why not take a look around?
Plan Meals: Plan your meals as best as you can. Most RVs come equipped with a limited kitchen, so it’s possible to stock a freezer with meat and produce. Take advantage of grilling at camp locations as much as possible to avoid lingering smells in the camper and to avoid clutter.
Look for Bargains: Search the Internet for inexpensive local campgrounds.
Travel Off-Season: Plan your trip during less popular vacation times for big savings and less-crowded attractions.
The time is now to start planning your cross-country road trip adventure. Take the time to map out your route and find fun and unusual attractions and sites to visit along the way as you explore Americas roads.
Post by Dee Paulson
A retired world history teacher, Dee travels the world and shares cultural and political viewpoints in her stories online. She visits Cairo and Italy every year.
Was that a witch whizzing through the air? A ghost peeking around that twisted tree stump? A vampire stalking you through the cemetery? Could be – the howling winds of October are upon us and with them come all sorts of otherworldly creatures and customs. Historians are divided on Halloween’s true origins; some believe the holiday is based on the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, while others take it back as far as Roman celebrations of ancestors and the dead. Just about everybody agrees that the Halloween we celebrate today is based in the old Christian holidays of All Saints Day and All Souls Day, which were reserved for praying for the recently departed who had yet to reach heaven.
The word “Halloween” itself is likely a Scottish variant on the title “All Hallows Eve,” the day before All Saints Day, and was first seen in the 15th century. Today, Halloween is second only to Christmas in retail sales, and is rapidly gaining due to increasing interest in decorating our homes and yards; yet Halloween celebrations remained largely the domain of Ireland and Scotland, reaching North America in the mid-19th century when immigrants from those countries brought their traditions to the United States. From carving pumpkins to asking for candy, here’s a quick look at those traditions and their meaning.
A favorite for many families, the carving of pumpkins began with the humble turnip. A British term dating from the 17th century, “jack o’lantern” literally means “man with a lantern.” Catholic children in the British Isles carried hollowed-out turnips (more likely rutabagas, not the small turnips we eat here) with carved faces, lit by a candle, as they went door-to-door begging for soul cakes on All Saints’ and All Souls’ Day. When Irish and Scottish families began settling in the United States, they traded the turnip for the more readily available pumpkin, and our pumpkin carving tradition began.
Bobbing for Apples
No Halloween party is complete without a tub full of water and apples. While potentially messy, bobbing for apples has been a traditional game for at least a few hundred years. Again originating in Ireland and Scotland, it was most likely a divination (or fortune-telling) game. Partygoers would attempt to catch an apple in their mouths, peel it carefully in one piece, throw the peel over their shoulders, and turn around to find it in the shape of the first initial of their true love’s name.
Trick or Treating
One of the most beloved sights of Halloween are the parades of children dressed in their costumes and makeup, roaming the neighborhood and begging door-to-door for treats. Trick-or-treating has its roots in the Middle Ages custom of Christmas wassailing, when people went door to door asking for food and drink. It also resembles the medieval practice of “souling,” when poor people canvassed neighbors asking for food in exchange for prayers for the dead.
However you choose to celebrate Halloween, the Jellystone Park™ Camp-Resorts team wishes you happy haunting! Click here for Fall and Halloween events at Jellystone campgrounds.
It was time to celebrate at the Jellystone Park campground in Montrose, Colorado when Yogi helped a guest propose to his girlfriend. She said Yes!
Visit any Jellystone Park between September 4 to 27, 2012 and Club Yogi Rewards members earn double points on all stays and qualified purchases at the Park! You don’t need to do anything special to receive the bonus. Just be sure to give the Park your Club Yogi Rewards member number when making reservations. Then present your card at check-in and when purchasing anything in the Park store.
So, make your reservation today at your favorite Park! We hope to see you soon.
Not a Club Yogi Rewards member? Join today for free.
The Club Yogi Rewards Team
I came across this article on aupairs.org and thought it was funny. This list is for someone who really doesn’t like to get dirty! For #4, at Jellystone Parks, we may not set up a tent for you, but we have plush cabins with all the comforts of home. As for #7 on the list, Jellystone Parks are all about families so we say “Bring the Kids!” and let us entertain them while you relax around the campfire.
1.Do not make your own food. When you go glamping you will be treated to gourmet food cooked by a chef. Depending on the experience, the food could be cooked over an open fire on-site where you can watch or it might come on a tray already prepared elsewhere. If you go to Las Ventanas al Paraiso in tropical Cabo San Lucas you will experience a wonderful private moonlit dinner on the beach before you sleep under the stars on the roof of the hotel.
2.Do not make your own bed. One of the many benefits of glamping is that there are people around to take care of the work for you. With glamping you get out into nature and enjoy the relaxing environment, without all of the work.
3.Do not make your own fire. When glamping, the fire pit is lit before you can even snap your fingers. Forget sitting on a rock or a stump that you pull up around the fire. When glamping you are provided with soft comfy chairs or benches.
4.Do not set up your own tent. While there are resorts and other locations that make you set up your own tent because they feel that you are glamping at their facility because you can go into the resort and get a massage, work out or buy a mixed drink, take note: these places are just fancy campgrounds. To be glamping you won’t need to get your hands dirty, unless you want to. The tents are already set up and the bed is made with luxury linens, unless you sleep in an air conditioned RV, cabin or Yurt, of course.
5.Do not sleep on the ground. Beds are provided for you. Sometimes they are very exotic canopy beds and other times they are traditional beds, but they have a nice mattress for you to sleep on so there’s no need to worry about creepy crawlies or having to use a rock for a pillow. With glamping you can enjoy luxury linens and down comforters.
6.You must take in your surroundings. Some glamping areas are buried in the heart of the city, but you are sleeping out under the stars and everything is taken care of for you. When glamping in the city it’s a little like when you were a kid and you pitched a tent in the backyard. There are things to go and do within walking distance. Many other glamping locations are set in perfect surroundings; overlooking a beautiful lake, high on a hill where you can see for miles, in the mountains where you need to be dropped by helicopter, or on an island where you can only arrive by boat.
7.Leave the kids at home. Some camps don’t mind kids and there are lots of things for them to do. In fact, places like Normandy Farms in Massachusetts have kids sized cabins that can be placed on your site for the kids to play and sleep in. Others consider glamping an adult only affair where the crowd is able to commune with nature and enjoy adult food and drinks. Be sure to know if your resort is family friendly before you pack up the kids.
8.Don’t wash the dishes. In a true glamping experience, meals will be served on china instead of plastic or paper. There is nothing glamorous about paper plates and plastic forks. You don’t wash the dishes when you eat at a restaurant and the experience will be similar while you are glamping.
9.Don’t bring an alarm clock. When you are out in nature you will wake up with the sun or whenever you feel like getting up. If you want to take an early morning stroll just let the concierge know and he will wake you gently. Bring a sleeping mask if you’d like to sleep past sunrise.
10.De-stress and enjoy yourself. The most important rule of glamping is to show up ready to relax and to have fun. Glamping is expensive and only for those that aren’t worried about the money they are spending. Massages are often offered right in your tent. Sometimes live music will be provided for your entertainment. Sit back, relax and just enjoy the glamping experience.
For the 11th year, the Tapestry of Community Offerings Family Music Festival will offer a large selection of family entertainment.
The event, which takes place Sept. 7 through 9 at Jellystone Park Resort in Eureka, Mo., includes a variety of music and family camping or cottage lodging. Other offerings include swimming, art, food vendors and a campsite decorating and costume contest.
“We have a very unique festival, in that we have a fun event for the kids and adults,” TOCO executive director Kim Vrooman said. “It’s a chance to finish out the summer on a high note. And everything, from our music to our workshops, has a ton of variety.”
Children can choose from several workshops, including lessons in art, karate, tye-dye, music and song-making, mini golf, mask and hat making and hula hooping with the St. Louis Hoop Club. The festival also offers evening baby-sitting.
Musical entertainment features everything from rock and blues to country and bluegrass. Bands appearing will be Jake’s Leg, Madahoochi, Cumberland Gap, Dogtown Allstars, Bottoms Up Blues Gang, Vitamen A, Sarah Jane and the Blue Notes, Snarky Gargoyles, BOB, Elemental Shakedown, Following the Water, EarthSol, Auset Music Project, David and Roslyn, Brooken Cookie, T-Bone from Babaloo, The Sparrows, Flea Bitten Dawgs, Sully, Echo Trace, Langen Neubacher and the Defeated County, BigChiefSpaceCoyote, June Bug, Stone Sugar Shakedown, Ellen the Felon and the Mattronome and the Cosmic Collaborative Hoop Group.
“The parents can let the kids have their fun, and have some fun of their own while they are at it,” Vrooman said. “I think the baby-sitting is one thing that sets our event apart. And when you come back to pick up the kids, they will have learned a new skill.”
Tapestry of Community Offerings organizes family events to benefit and raise awareness of children in need, and the festival benefits several not-for-profit organizations. The donation to camp and attend the weekend festival goes directly to service programs including the TOCO Textile Pantry, TOCO Youth Sponsorships in the Arts, TOCO Youth Summer Camp Sponsorships, TOCO College Scholarships for Single Parents and TOCO Bear Necessities Family Adoption program. Money raised also goes to support community organizations like the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, YMCA and the Helping Hands Food Pantry.
“We want the fun to lead to a positive message for everyone, and to help those in need,” Vrooman said. “We want to set an example. But we want to let loose and party, too.”
Single-day passes range from $15 for children younger than 17, to $35 for adults. Weekend passes are $30 for children and $50 for adults. Camping options range from free primitive sites, to $75 for RV camps. To purchase tickets, make reservations or find out more information, including camping options and complete band lineup, visit tocofestival.com or call 618-257-8626.
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Here’s a nice article we found about the Jellystone Park in Caledonia, WI. Thought we’d pass it along if you’re looking for a vacation in Wisconsin.
Looking For A Place To Beat The Heat Or Have A Stay-cation?
The hot weather has zapped all of us, but here’s a fun place you can go to beat the heat and even have a few laughs and giggles around the campfire.
Looking for a place to cool off? Yogi’s got you covered.
Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park, 8425 State Road 38, just may be one of the coolest places to escape the hot weather, and the park and RV/campground isn’t far from home.
Randy and Theresa Isaacson, along with their three adult daughters – Rachel, Bridget and Marley and their families – operate the camp-resort from early May through mid-October each year.
The campground recently added a 173.5-foot waterslide that drops 25 feet, new mini golf greens, and two premium campsites, and four basic cabins to the 250 plus sites. They also upgraded the bathrooms.
Bridget Bender, the general manager for the park and Randy and Theresa’s middle daughter, said they added the amenities to provide their guests a better camping experience.
“The feedback we’ve gotten from riders has been fun to listen to,” Bender said. “Everyone loves the new waterslide, but the adults seem to be more surprised by it than anyone. This is what might explain the look on people’s faces as they exit the flume. Everyone has a shocking look on their face initially as if they are surprised by its speed, and then it is all smiles.”
Next year a second slide will be added, Bender said.
The park also features recreation activities and just recently held a mystery-themed weekend where campers needed to figure out who stole Yogi’s picnic basket and JellyFest, which features everything from karaoke to a “gel…ly hair style contest,” will be held from July 13 through July 15. They also have laser tag, a jumping pillow, pool and water balloon slingshots.
“We want our guests to have an experience that they can’t get anywhere else,” Bender said.
But you don’t have to camp at the park to enjoy the pool and recreation area. Day passes are $14 for an individual or $50 for a family from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday, but some weeks are excluded.
Visit the campground’s website for campground pricing. Camping prices include all of the activities and recreation events.
They offer sites for tent and RV camping, but if lugging around all of that camping gear isn’t your thing, they also have a number of cabins, and they have air conditioning.
“We’re an expensive campground, but we offer a value vacation,” Bender said.
When Ron Markel attended the world pro lumberjack event 15 years ago, he noticed that there were no interpreters and thus no way for deaf people to participate.
“We decided to found our own world deaf lumberjack (event),” he said in sign language.
Markel, a logger from Williamsport, Md., helped to found the Eastern Deaf Timberfest, a four-day event held this year at Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park in Mill Run in Fayette County. More than 1,000 deaf people were expected to participate by the end of the weekend.
Participants compete in activities including logging contests, water log-rolling, chain saw competitions, ax throwing, pole climbing, darts and horseshoes. The event also featured a Mr. and Ms. Timberfest competition as well as entertainment and activities for children.
This is the 11th Eastern Deaf Timberfest, which started as a yearly event and now is held every two years. It’s held at various locations across the East, and this is its first time in Western Pennsylvania. The event is organized by a committee of volunteers, and it’s held every other year at a different campsite.
On Timberfest off years, a family camp is held.
The vast majority of participants are deaf, Markel said, though a few hearing children of deaf parents participate. Markel and the other participants spoke through volunteer interpreter David Wright of Orange County, Va.
“I am proud of 1,000 deaf people. Deaf power,” Markel said, as he used his hand to cover his ear, then pumped his arm in the air.
As Markel signed, participants nearby practiced climbing a tall wooden pole while others tried their hand at cutting through a hefty log with a chain saw. In both events, participants compete for the best time.
At first, many deaf people didn’t know how to use the tools for the event, Markel said, but they’ve learned and become experts.
Markel, who serves as the event’s logging assistant director, attends workshops and courses to learn about safety guidelines.
“It is completely run by the deaf,” Marie Ann Campbell, the event’s chairwoman, said.
She said she finds Timberfest exciting.
“If it wasn’t for Timberfest, we wouldn’t have the time to be with our friends,” said Campbell, of Charles Town, W.Va.
Attendees travel from Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and even the West Coast, she said.
Participants either stay on the campgrounds or at nearby hotels.
Rick Colosimone traveled from Ottawa, Ont., and called the event a “heartfelt” one, full of “warm friendship.”
Bruce Hubbard, one of the founders, said he knows of four other similar events in the nation. Campbell calls him “grandfather of the Timberfest.”
Beth Hortie, executive director of Eastern Deaf Timberfest, said the event brings everyone together talking about wood, relaxing and sharing in fellowship with one another.
“It’s our leisure, recreation activity,” Hortie said.