A Travellerspoint blog

Making a List

The orange and black of Halloween have given way to the reds, greens, golds and silvers of Thanksgiving, Christmas and the prospect of the new year. The holiday displays that in September seemed so out of place now look homey and inviting.

It's time to break out the notepads and pens, because you've got to make the list before you can actually check it twice. Then it's on to the next stage of planning: Who to take on which excursion to each destination?

Hmmm. Tanger Outlet Center and Colonial Pinnacle are great destinations for family shopping trips because there's something to meet every need, every taste and every price point, plus shops left over to provide inspiration for the things you've inadvertently left off the list. Plus, they are close to lots of restaurants, and, if someone gets bored, there are plenty of distractions nearby.

The Wharf and San Roc Cay are perfect for girlfriend getaways. You can take that friend, the one who has everything, and watch her try on shoes or earrings or test perfumes, then double back when she's not looking to snag the perfect gift. Or you can gather the gal pals for a day of boutique hopping in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores.

Better start limbering up now. The marathon is about to start ...

Posted by Carol W 12:21 Comments (0)

Glad that My Home's in Alabama

If you grew up like I did, enjoying the country music from the group Alabama, then you know that the group isn't active any longer. But the guys haven't given up their love of music and performing.

When I saw that Jeff Cook and Teddy Gentry of Alabama were going to be at the Flora-Bama next week, I decided to head down early and enjoy their concert before the start of the Frank Brown Songwriters Festival which begins on the 13th.

Jeff, Teddy and a host of other great performers are putting on a Veterans' Day concert. All active duty military and veterans with ID get in free. That's pretty cool. I'll get to enjoy a great show and party with our country's finest.

Posted by Carol W 20:36 Comments (0)

A Beach Vacation can be something to sing about

Or at least to sing along with. In mid-November you can find me and my friends in toe-tapping heaven along the Alabama and Florida Gulf Coast. That's because it is the time for the annual Frank Brown Songwriters Festival. The event takes place across a ten day period from November 13th through the 23rd.

There isn't one central location. Instead the fun is divided up among bars, clubs, lounges and even non-traditional locations like an art gallery, a museum and a campground. And many different cities get to play host - from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach across the state line to Perdido Key and Pensacola.

We always use the event as an excuse to visit as many different bars and clubs as we can in 10 days. Find your favorite at www.fbisf.com/venues.html

Posted by Carol W 20:35 Comments (0)

Halloween just around the corner

Even before the big night of trick-or-treating arrives, there will lots to do for all the ghosts, goblins and Gulf Coast ghoulies.
Lulu's, a Gulf Shores eatery popular with locals and visitors alike, partners with Baldwin County Schools' for the second annual BooLu's Haunted House. The proceeds from the event benefit the art department for the school system.
For younger spooks and sprites, the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo presents Boo at the Zoo 2008 from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday. The Web site, www.alabamagulfcoastzoo.org/, states, "Tickets to the Halloween carnival are $2 per child and $1 per adult, which includes face painting and all of the kid-friendly games, such as tic-tac-toe, pumpkin bowling, pin the wart on the witch and pass the pumpkin. Admission also includes the costume contest that starts at 6 p.m."
That takes care of children and adults, but what about those other family members, the pets? Relax -- and break out the mini costumes. Saturday, the pooches can go to the Wharf's Howl-o-ween Doggie Parade and Costume Contest. There's just enough time to make it from there to downtown Gulf Shores for the first-ever Boneyard Bash. So as Halloween draws near, remember: There will be haunted hay rides, haunted hot-air balloon rides, haunted houses, haunted mazes -- if you can think of it, chances are, someone has haunted it.

Posted by Carol W 11:53 Comments (0)

Unusual events planned for coming weekend

I'm sure the first thing anyone thinks of when heading for the Alabama Gulf Coast is a jousting match, right? No? Well then surely it's an authentic German sausage, hmmm? No again, huh?
This coming weekend, anyone headed for the Gulf Shores/Orange Beach area needs to make plans for some unusual entertainment.
The 25th Annual Renaissance Festival "GATALOP 25" by the Barony of the Osprey, the Mobile branch of the Society for Creative Anachronism, is Thursday through Sunday. During the event, Fort Gaines on Dauphin Island is transformed into a medieval "Meridian Fortress by the Sea."

There will be vendors, artisans, battles and lots of pagentry. For details, visit www.baronyofosprey.org/Gatalop.htm.
The Elberta Volunteer Fire Department offers its semi-annual Original German Sausage Festival from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free, and the event takes place in the town park.
According to its Web site, www.elbertafire.com, festival-goers usually purchase SEVEN THOUSAND pounds of sausage during the event -- and that is usually sold at least two hours before the festival ends. In addition to German sausage and sauerkraut, visitors also can try "German-style filled cabbage, potato salad, goulash, red beans & rice, hamburgers, hot dogs, BBQ sandwiches, ice cream, popcorn and peanuts. There will be baked goods as well as arts & crafts for sale at the festival. The Bellview Stumpfiddle Band will perform with the North End Stompers, and cloggers, carnival rides and polka, country and German music will also be provided for entertainment."
With a bit of careful planning, visitors to the area can be stuffed like a sausage before knight-fall!

Posted by Carol W 11:52 Comments (0)

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