Get our e-newsletter

Travel

Labor Day: By the Numbers

Starfish on the Beach

The first Labor Day occurred on Tuesday September 5, 1882, in New York City.
Number of Americans that are vacationing during Labor Day: 33 million
(Source: Dana Jones)

 

Chime In graphic

Where is your Labor Day destination? Click “Chime In” to comment on our Facebook page. We’d love to hear from you!


Hike, Bike and Tee Up At Georgia State Parks This Fall

RedTopMountain

Red Top Mountain

There are more than just fall festivals and hayrides available this year at Georgia State Parks. What better way to enjoy the arrival of autumn than spending time outdoors? From golf course packages and hiking, to spending time with family at a fall celebration or two, Georgia State Parks are the best place to be while saying farewell to summer.

Welcome the cool, crisp fall air with a round of golf at some of the best golf courses in Georgia. Stay and play at eight Georgia State Parks’ courses that are offering overnight accommodations featuring two day, two night stay packages. These bargain packages range from $58 to $180 and include accommodations in lodges, cottages or nearby hotels, cart and greens fees for 18 holes per day. Want a challenge? Visit The Creek Golf Course at Hard Labor State Park appropriately named as “the 4th sweetest deal in the United States” by Golf Digest Frugal Golfer magazine and tackle what is voted as “the hardest starting hole in Georgia.” The Lakes at Laura S. Walker State Park is also a challenging yet fun test of golf. Settle overnight at a lakeside cottage and enjoy the views of the stunning peninsula and partake in the course selected as “the 7th best municipal course in the nation” by GolfWeek.

Whether biking recreationally or on a more vigorous terrain, pedaling the trails at Georgia State Parks is a great way to get outdoor exercise and take in the vibrant autumn color of the leaves while quietly rolling through the scenic woods. Recreational bikers are free to roam miles of paths at Panola Mountain, Red Top Mountain, Hart, Smithgall Woods, and Victoria Bryant state parks. With dynamic grades and terrains, grab a bike and strap on a helmet to visit seven state parks that will test your talent. Fort Mountain, Tallulah Gorge, Unicoi, Richard B. Russell, Mistletoe, Fort Yargo and Hard Labor Creek state parks are loaded with steep grades, bridges and fast berms that are designed to provide a challenge for the more experienced cyclers.

Enjoy exploring the outdoors on foot? Hikers can ease their mind and stretch their legs when visiting some of the most diverse and scenic hiking trails in the state. The challenging backcountry trails of Black Rock Mountain State Park and paved trails suitable for wheelchairs and strollers at Mistletoe State Park are available for all ages and fitness levels. Take fall fun to new heights with hiking excursions that include breathtaking waterfalls of the North Georgia Mountains at Fort Mountain State Park, Vogel State Park and Amicalola Falls. For guests who prefer to explore the trails after sunset, Tallulah George State Park even offers full moon hikes during the fall. To begin or expand hiking adventures at Georgia State Parks, join the Canyon Climbers Club and experience some of the system’s most spectacular landscapes.

Fall at Georgia State Parks would not be complete without a little celebration to bring in the cooler weather and festive activities that await after summer. Seize the autumn day and come out to the many fall-themed events available. Harvest on the Homestead at Red Top Mountain State Park in September is perfect for families to enjoy toys and games, crafts, blacksmithing, cooking, contests, and more. Florence Marina State Park will offer a family-friendly Oktoberfest complete with haunted hayrides, games for kids, a costume contest and silent auction. For art lovers, Roosevelt’s Little White House has planned its first craft festional in October, and Cloudland Canyon State Park will hold its Annual Arts & Crafts Festival in November.

For more information on activities offered at Georgia State Parks in the fall and ways to welcome the cooler weather, visit www.GaStateParks.org/events

Chime In graphic

Do you have a favorite Georgia State Park? Click “Chime In” to comment on our Facebook page, Facebook.com/EASTCOBBER. We’d love to hear from you!

Hike, Bike and Tee Up At Georgia State Parks This Fall

RedTopMountain

There are more than just fall festivals and hayrides available this year at Georgia State Parks. What better way to enjoy the arrival of autumn than spending time outdoors? From golf course packages and hiking, to spending time with family at a fall celebration or two, Georgia State Parks are the best place to be while saying farewell to summer.

Welcome the cool, crisp fall air with a round of golf at some of the best golf courses in Georgia. Stay and play at eight Georgia State Parks’ courses that are offering overnight accommodations featuring two day, two night stay packages. These bargain packages range from $58 to $180 and include accommodations in lodges, cottages or nearby hotels, cart and greens fees for 18 holes per day. Want a challenge? Visit The Creek Golf Course at Hard Labor State Park appropriately named as “the 4th sweetest deal in the United States” by Golf Digest Frugal Golfermagazine and tackle what is voted as “the hardest starting hole in Georgia.” The Lakes at Laura S. Walker State Park is also a challenging yet fun test of golf. Settle overnight at a lakeside cottage and enjoy the views of the stunning peninsula and partake in the course selected as “the 7th best municipal course in the nation” by GolfWeek.

Biking and hiking trails are some of the best ways to explore Georgia State Parks this fall. Bike enthusiasts are encouraged to find the challenge they seek and enjoy the beautiful scenery on an array of available biking trails. Whether biking recreationally or on a more vigorous terrain, visiting the trails at Georgia State Parks is a great way to get outdoor exercise and take in the vibrant autumn color of the leaves while quietly rolling through the scenic woods. Recreational bikers are free to roam miles of paths at Panola Mountain, Red Top Mountain, Hart, Smithgall Woods, and Victoria Bryant state parks. With dynamic grades and terrains, grab a bike and strap on a helmet to visit eight state parks that will test your talent. Fort Mountain, Tallulah George, Unicoi, Richard B. Russell, Mistletoe, Fort Yargo and Hard Labor Creek state parks are loaded with steep grades, bridges and fast berms that are designed to provide a challenge for the more experienced cyclers.

Enjoy exploring the outdoors on foot? Hikers can ease their mind and stretch their legs when visiting some of the most diverse and scenic hiking trails in the state. The challenging backcountry trails of Black Rock Mountain State Park and paved trails suitable for wheelchairs and strollers at Mistletoe State Park are available for all ages and fitness levels. Take fall fun to new heights with hiking excursions that include breathtaking waterfalls of the North Georgia Mountains at Fort Mountain State Park, Vogel State Park and Amicalola Falls. For guests who prefer to explore the trails after sunset, Tallulah George State Park even offers full moon hikes during the fall. To begin or expand hiking adventures at Georgia State Parks, join the Canyon Climbers Club and experience some of the system’s most spectacular landscapes.

Fall at Georgia State Parks would not be complete without a little celebration to bring in the cooler weather and festive activities that await after summer. Seize the autumn day and come out to the many fall-themed events available. Harvest on the Homestead at Red Top Mountain State Park in September is perfect for families to enjoy toys and games, crafts, blacksmithing, cooking, contests, and more. Florence Marina State Park will offer a family-friendly Oktoberfest festival complete with a haunted hayride, games for kids, and a costume contest as well as the annual Silent Auction. There is something for the art lovers too, F.D. Roosevelt will host the first Little White House Craft Festival and Cloudland Canyon state parks will hold the Second Annual Arts & Crafts Festival in November.

Visitors will enjoy watching the kids chase each other around and expend their energy the good ole fashioned way—in the outdoors surrounded by the gorgeous fall foliage. For more information on activities offered at Georgia State Parks in the fall and ways to welcome the cooler weather, visit www.GaStateParks.org/events.

 

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll love our newsletter! Click HERE to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter and be a neighbor in the know!

Vacation health care: Tips for Traveling

42-15641167

Planning ahead of time can make your travels smoother and help you avoid problems.

  • Talk to your health care provider or visit a travel clinic 4 – 6 weeks before you leave for your trip. You may need to get updated (or booster) vaccinations before you leave.
  • Ask your health insurance carrier what they will cover (including emergency transport) while traveling out of the country.
  • Consider traveler’s insurance if you are going outside of the United States.
  • If you are leaving your children, leave a signed consent-to-treat form with your children’s caretaker.
  • If you are taking medicine, talk to your health care provider before leaving. Carry all medicines with you in your carry-on bag.
  • If traveling outside the United States, learn about the health care in the country you are visiting. If you can, find out where you would go if you needed medical help.
  • If you are planning a long flight, try to arrive as close as possible to your normal bedtime based on the time zone where you are landing. This will help prevent jet lag.
  • If you have an important event scheduled, plan to arrive 2 or 3 days in advance. This will give you time to recover from jet lag.

Important items to bring with you include:

  • First aid kit
  • Immunization records
  • Insurance ID cards
  • Medical records for chronic illnesses or recent major surgery
  • Name and phone numbers of your pharmacist and health care providers
  • Nonprescription medications that you might need
  • Sunscreen, hat, and sunglasses

Know what steps need to take to prevent different diseases and infections. This includes:

  • How to avoid mosquito bites
  • What foods are safe to eat
  • Where it is safe to eat
  • How to drink water and other liquids
  • How to wash and clean your hands well

Know how to prevent and treat traveler’s diarrhea if you are visiting an area where it is a common problem (such as in Mexico).

Other tips include:

  • Be aware of vehicle safety. Use seat belts when traveling.
  • Check the local emergency number for where you are. Not all places use 911.
  • When traveling long distances, expect your body to adjust to a new time zone at the rate of about 1 hour per day.

When traveling with children:

  • Make sure that the children know the name and telephone number of your hotel in case they get separated from you.
  • Write this information down. Put this information in a pocket or other place on their person.
  • Give children enough money to make a phone call. Make sure they know how to use the phone system where you are.

(Source: Publix and MedlinePlus)

Win A Weekend Getaway to Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans

 

Lucky you! Hotel Monteleone will be giving away a free trip to the hotel this summer, and all you have to do is enter through their Facebook Page! Hotel Monteleone’s Summer Giveaway includes a two-night stay at the hotel, welcome cocktails at the famous Carousel Bar and a dinner valued up to $100 at the popular Criollo Restaurant.

Experience the magic of one of New Orleans most historic and luxurious hotels all while spending $0 on your booking. Doesn’t get much better than that! Play now by clicking HERE.

 

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll love our newsletter! Click HERE to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter and be a neighbor in the know!

The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage Officially Unveils Desert Chic in Southern California

Rancho

From the largest concentration of Mid-Century Modern architecture to one of the most highly-anticipated resort openings in California, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company L.L.C. unveils a new level of chic in the destination of Palm Springs, with The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage.

A mere two hours from the world-renowned destinations of Los Angeles and San Diego, the desert resort is perched on a 650-foot bluff offering sweeping vistas and is enveloped by the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountain ranges overlooking the Coachella Valley.  The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage has been designed in homage to Southern California’s indoor/outdoor lifestyle and it presents a spectacular sense of place and authenticity found among few luxury resorts. Unparalleled panoramic views from a serene hilltop location, a pristine indigenous landscape, integrated water features, and brilliant fire and light attractions complement the resort’s 244 spacious guest rooms. Nearly all feature large patios and terraces, some with their own fire pits and views of the dramatic mountain ranges.

The 25,000-square-foot Ritz-Carlton Spa, Rancho Mirage lies at the heart of the resort’s free-standing, two-story spa lifestyle complex. The contemporary indoor/outdoor retreat features 15 opulent treatment rooms, many with private terraces, a complete Fitness Center, movement studios, private whirlpools, rain and Vichy showers, eucalyptus-infused steam and sauna facilities, an outdoor meditation mesa, and an outdoor co-ed whirlpool with waterfall and mountain views. An extensive selection of indoor and outdoor indulgences is available, highlighted by the use of innovative and exclusive skin care technologies, facials, massage, body treatments and the signature Hammock Massage and black diamond dust Rat Pack Facial for gentlemen, both debuting this summer.

State Fare Bar & Kitchen presents the best of California in a relaxed, multi-setting dining environment which showcases a chefs’ display kitchen, interactive market table, outdoor terraces located just off the restaurant with striking valley views, a cozy fireplace “snug,” tableside cocktail trolley service in the bar, walk-in red and white wine rooms and artisanal California menus and ingredients.

Additional resort amenities include three swimming pools, a comprehensive Ritz Kids program and multi-room Ritz Kids center with its own children’s movie theatre, 16,000 square-feet of contemporary indoor meeting space, and 15,000 square-feet of outdoor event space incorporating two lush, cliff-side lawns.

For golf enthusiasts, The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage has secured guest access to premier courses and clubs in the Valley, while nearby tennis, hiking on 20 miles of mountain trails, and luxury shopping and cultural experiences also may be enjoyed within minutes of the luxurious new retreat.

Guests are invited to experience The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage with a selection of opening celebration package rates starting at $379 USD per night.  Reservations may be made online at www.ritzcarlton.com/ranchomirage, by calling 1 (800) 241-3333 or the resort directly at (760) 321-8282 , or by contacting a travel professional.

 

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll love our newsletter! Click HERE to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter and be a neighbor in the know!

Be a Tourist in Atlanta at The National Black Arts Festival

JimmyHeath©CarolFriedmnNoReproBlackArtdsFestivalOnly

The spectacular National Black Arts Festival (NBAF) season continues in August with a world premiere hip-hop theater performance, a film festival, an all-out reggae celebration and an evening performance from an NEA Jazz Master. The 2014 season runs through the end of September with many additional opportunities to honor the art and artists of the African Diaspora. The full schedule is available at www.nbaf.org.

In August, the NBAF calendar is all about Music and Spoken Word:

Brave New Voices Institute Poetry Slam, Saturday, August 2, 2 p.m. at Center for Civil and Human Rights
Free admission with RSVP at www.nbaf.org
In partnership with San Francisco’s Youth Speaks, and Atlanta Word Works, NBAF 
provides Atlanta-based teens with a two-week training
 intensive in creative writing and
spoken word. Led by teaching 
artist Chinaka Hodge, Youth Speaks 
founder James Kass and poetry slam champion Danez Smith, the Institute starts with a two-day program for teachers and culminates in the live poetry slam.

Wisdom of the Cypher by
Toni Blackman with D.R.E.S.
 tha BEATnik, Saturday, August 2, 8 p.m. and Sunday, August 3, 2:30 p.m. at The Loft at Center Stage
Tickets from $20
Wisdom of the Cypher, a world premiere by hip-hop impresario Toni Blackman, is a high-energy montage of lyrical verses and spoken word that opens upon multiple pathways and possibilities for the form of hip-hop and its community. Wisdom of the Cypher travels along the path that not only defines the essence, but clarifies its soul purpose for existence. Joined by Atlanta-based beatboxer D.R.E.S. tha Beatnik and directed by Monica L. Williams with C. Hankins as the musical conductor and a universe 
of digital projections, this work in spoken word, images and music unfolds upon a potential future for this sacred form.

Music & Soul in the African Diaspora: A Film Festival, Saturday, August 16, beginning at 11 a.m. Rich Auditorium, Woodruff Arts Center
Tickets $8 (Seniors $6) for one film, $42 (Seniors $30) for full-day pass to seven films

Films exploring the influence of the African Diaspora on four continents include:
“Hands of God,” Dir. Delia Ackerman, Peru;
“Susana Baca: Memoria Viva,” Dir. Mark Dixon, Peru/Belgium;
“Return to Gorée,” Dir. Dir. Pierre-Yves Borgeaud, Senegal/Switzerland/Luxembourg;
“The Story of Lovers Rock,” Dir. Menelik Shabazz, United Kingdom;
“Tango Negro: The African Roots of Tango,” Dir. Dom Pedro, France;
“Josephine Backer, Black Diva in a White Man’s World,” Dir. Annette von Wangenheim, Germany and
“Wild Women Don’t Have the Blues,” Dir. Christine Dall, USA/Canada.

NBAF Global Featuring Third World and Maxi Priest, Sunday, August 17, 6 p.m. at The Tabernacle
Tickets from $17
NBAF Global is a new annual celebration of one region of the African Diaspora. This year, NBAF stages an all-out celebration of reggae music and culture in a spectacular concert featuring Jamaican superpower Third World, British-Jamaican megastar Maxi Priest and Atlanta’s own Julie Dexter. Dance floor and VIP Seating available.

Spotlight Series: Heath Brothers Quartet plus Jeremy Pelt, Saturday, August 23, 8 p.m. at Rialto Center for the Arts
Tickets from $28
Part of the inaugural NBAF Spotlight Series curated by Wynton Marsalis, the Heath Brothers Quartet plus Jeremy Pelt offer an evening of classics from the American Songbook as well as signature compositions by Heath himself. Marsalis states, “NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Heath, brilliant instrumentalist, magnificent composer and arranger, is vital at 87 years old – when he walks into a room, jazz history is made.”

THE 2014 NBAF SEASON ALSO INCLUDES:

Legends Celebration (Sept. 6) pays tribute to luminaries in dance, theater, film, music, and visual arts. This year’s event honors five legendary artists, one in each field, through tribute performances and presentations. Spotlight Series curator Wynton Marsalis is the 2014 Music Legend and will be joined by four other creative luminaries to be announced at the NBAF Gala on July 19.

Spotlight Series: Jason Marsalis Vibes Quartet (Sept. 11) features Marsalis on vibraphones, Will Goble on bass, David Potter on drums and Austin Johnson on piano performing hits from Marsalis’ recent album.

Doxology Ring Shout: A Praise Dance for the Doxy (Sept. 13 & 14) is an NBAF commission and world premiere in partnership with Spelman College’s Department of Drama and Dance and T. Lang Dance, Doxology draws back the curtain on the ecstatic, transcendent ring shout tradition through a rich blend of dance, visual imagery and music. Created by legendary choreographer Dianne McIntyre and esteemed playwright Paul Cater Harrison, the “dance opera” explores the history of the ritual in a virtualized performance environment constructed by video artist Phillip Mallory Jones and supported by musician Dwight Andrews.

Spotlight Series: Marcus Roberts Trio: Celebrating Monk and Trane (Sept. 18) brings to Atlanta a virtuosic style – a style that is strongly rhythmic, melodic, and filled with dynamic contrast.

Game On! (Sept. 26 & 27) is a theater piece for young audiences co-commissioned by Hi-ARTS, the National Black Arts Festival and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Game On! follows its hero, a young girl who ends up inside a video game and learns that virtual reality is no match for real life.

The National Black Arts Festival (NBAF) is the longest-running multi-disciplinary arts festival of the African Diaspora. This year NBAF celebrates its 26th year as a cultural leader. Each year the festival presents works and exhibitions from renowned legends as well as emerging young artists. For the latest news and updates, “like” National Black Arts Festival on Facebook, and visit its web site at www.nbaf.org.

 

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll LOVE us on Facebook! Become a fan and “Like Us” us on our Facebook fan page. We’re on Twitter too, @eastcobber.

East Cobb Family Sees Rock City

 

Buzz, Ring, Beep-Beep, Chime, Ding, Whistle, Chirp …. Our lives are controlled by electronic devices that dictate how we are to spend almost every moment of our day. It’s not uncommon for us to schedule ‘family time’ and try to cram fun into the allotted time before we move on to the next scheduled appointment.

Head north up I-75 for the short drive to Rock City Gardens ( on the Georgia/Tennesee boder) to enjoy a self-paced tour through natural gardens. With easy walking paths, ample shade and interesting tidbits of information about the plants, the gardens and even the legends, Rock City is sure to make for a fun family adventure to remember.

Amble along on the self-paced tour along the Enchanted Trail of rock gardens and enjoy the Swing-A-Long Bridge (a great place to snap a photo), the fabulous view of seven states seen from Lover’s Leap, the 100-foot waterfall and the famous 1,000 ton balanced rock. Everyone is sure to chuckle as they make it through the Fat Man’s Squeeze and fun continues through the Fairyland Caverns and retro-cool Mother Goose Village.

Rock City also is home to the educational and entertaining “Birds of Prey” show that features rescued birds that will amaze audiences of all ages. Even though the trails are well shaded, this show offers the perfect opportunity to sit, rest and relax.

Rock City hosts several special events throughout the year – going on now through Labor Day, get your toes tapping with Summer Music Weekends. Coupons are available on the website, which will help make the trip and time together even sweeter! My family recently visited during “Fairy Tale Nights” and of course, we had a magical time!

Go ahead, schedule the family time, use the GPS for driving directions, speed-read through the Yelp reviews to find the best restaurants along the way, Hotwire or Priceline for a hotel if you decide to make a weekend of it … just leave the devices in the car unless you’ll use them only to take pictures!

More Details about Rock City
Rock City Gardens
1400 Patten Road
Lookout Mountain, GA 30750
www.seerockcity.com
800-854-0675 or 706-820-2531

About the Writer
As a life-long resident of East Cobb, Dana diLorenzo is proud to be a contributing writer for EAST COBBER. She has written marketing copy for Fortune 500 companies and contributed articles to various regional publications. Dana was selected to represent the state of Georgia at the Cooper Tires Super Mom Drive & Ride where she happily accepted the “Driving Miss Daisy” award as the slowest, yet safest driver in the group. She has also written for major hotel chains as a Travel Mom. When she’s not working on a writing assignment, you can find Dana and husband Rick at a local baseball field, swim team meet or basketball game cheering on their sons Clark and Connor.

French classes offered at La Madeleine

la madeleine

Private classes offered weekday mornings at La Madeleine 4101 Roswell Road #812, Marietta 30062. Schedule is flexible.

Class offers beginners basic expressions and cultural topics needed for travel to a French-speaking county.

Intermediate and advanced levels are also available.

8 one-hour classes once a week. Cost: $250 (non-refundable, payable at first class)

More info: Bunny Renkin 770-565-7565 or brenkin@bellsouth.net.

 

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll love our newsletter! Click HERE to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter and be a neighbor in the know!

Georgia Tourism Launches New Vacation and Travel Planning Website

Georgia Tourism, a division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, announced today the launch of the state’s newly redesigned tourism website. ExploreGeorgia.org now offers visitors fresh custom features including the new Georgia Trip Planner, shareable trip ideas, interactive maps and much more.

ExploreGeorgia.org is now loaded with new technology like Smart Content, which will help deliver the right content to the right potential visitor at the right time, providing users with exactly what they are looking for,” said Kevin Langston, deputy commissioner for tourism for the Georgia Department of Economic Development. “The responsive design gives it an effortless and seamless transition between computers, smartphones and tablets.”

The enhancements made to ExploreGeorgia.org focus on all aspects of the consumer’s travel decision-making process. The site offers inspirational content for planning and booking to sharing trip ideas on social media. One key component of the new site is the ability to create a shareable itinerary by adding tourism sites to the new Georgia Explorer Trip Planner. The Georgia Explorer Trip Planner provides visitors with a customized approach to exploring the website by organizing and mapping out the things they want to see and do in Georgia.

At the heart of the site is new engaging content with featured articles, itineraries, top-ten lists, must-see attractions, and the Explore Georgia blog. Not only will visitors find information about iconic Georgia destinations, attractions, accommodations and events, but the brand new easy-to-navigate website also features:

  • Slide shows and image galleries
  • interactive maps
  • travel deals and packages
  • trip ideas
  • a complete list of dining options

Additions to the site create greater exposure for the state’s thousands of tourism partners – making it easy for potential travelers to find and access tourism partners’ profile pages where they can find directions through Google Maps, nearby attractions, information and amenities, and deals all in one location. For the first time ever, Georgia Tourism partnered with the Georgia Restaurant Association (GRA) to incorporate the association’s complete list of restaurants on the state’s tourism website.

ExploreGeorgia.org is Georgia Tourism’s main marketing tool in distributing travel information to visitors throughout the world. The advanced functionality and new design incorporates inspirational content encouraging visitors to plan their next vacation in Georgia. Watch our video to learn more about the new ExploreGeorgia.org. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUDVwviTBcw&feature=youtu.be.

LIKE THIS BLOG? Then you’ll love our newsletter! Click HERE to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter and be a neighbor in the know!