Do yourself and the family a favour this weekend and head off to the Celebration of Lights festival on the St. Clair River in Sarnia’s downtown Centennial Park.
I was there last weekend for the official lighting ceremony under the direction of Santa Claus himself.
The Celebration of Lights is a spectacular display in which Sarnia-Lambton is set aglow under a blanket of illuminated lights. The event began in 1984 with 650 lights and nine displays. It has snowballed to the point that this year there are more than 250,000 lights and 41 illuminated displays.
Horse and wagon rides were also available on opening night along with a spectacular fireworks display.
The entire family will enjoy this special Christmas event close to home.
So many Italian towns are now competing to offload old houses for less than the price of an espresso that some are trying to sweeten the deal further to lure buyers away from their rivals.
The latest destination on the scene is Bivona, a small town deep in the heart of the southern island of Sicily, which is easing restrictions and offering tax bonuses to anyone who wants to pay just over $1 to buy one of a dozen empty and dilapidated properties.
As in other Italian towns and villages offering properties for next to nothing, Bivona’s young people have been deserting their home in pursuit of better opportunities in big cities, leaving it depopulated and in danger of dying completely.
As is usual with these deals, buyers are expected to invest in repairing and restoring the property.
Bivona’s tax incentives are buyers who choose to also take up residency.
Experience the ultimate western Canadian ski vacation at the Fairmont Castle Hop. Ski all three resorts while castle hopping between stays at the Fairmont Banff Springs and the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise.
While skiing the Big 3, your luggage will be transferred between properties. The package can be booked starting at either hotel. For more information call 1-844-754-2443.
Do you love bowling and spending quality time with your kids? Sounds like an Ideal weekend. Well that’s not all! It actually gets better as you can now enjoy a game of bowling at a place that has a restaurant, bar and 12-lane bowling alley – all underwater in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Called Uncle Buck’s Fish Bowl and Grill, the perfect weekend trip for not only the little ones but also for adults. Imagine an indoor activity involving bowling and you are accompanied by stingrays and sea turtles.
If your aspiring mermaids and mermen (or marine biologists) want to enjoy an underwater experience, here’s your chance to pretty much blow their minds. The kitschy undersea decor delivers perfectly with themed lighting, backdrops, custom bowling balls that look like an octopus or mermaid. It also comes with wooden lanes having faux sea turtles, sharks, stingrays and other saltwater critters. Hand-painted murals and fish hanging from the ceiling bring everything together for a deep sea dive like no other.
Want to try and earn $20,000 by making it through one of the scariest haunted houses in the U.S.? Good luck. No one has made it yet at the McKarney Manor in Summertown, Tennessee. It’s billed as the scariest haunted house in the U.S.
Guests are not allowed to enter until they watch a two hour-long video, sign a 40-page waiver, create a safe word and pass a physical among other requirements.
You will also need to clear a drug test to determine if you are under the influence.
The video titled (And Then There Were None”) is about every contestant who attempted to complete the haunted house but failed between July 2017 and August of this year.
The spooky tour is called “desolation” and it can take more than 10 hours to finish. No one ever has to date.
Every year we overlook the fact that festive colours red and green technically clash in order to welcome Christmas into our homes. But this year there’s another option: enter the black Christmas tree.
According to Treetopia, black is now the second most popular colour for artificial Christmas trees in Washington, D.C. and in a number of states including Arizona and Indiana.
The hashtag #blackchristmastree has also featured in more than 10,000 posts on Instagram proving their widespread popularity. Although not traditional, the black trees give a home a glamorous Scandinavian chic look when paired with white and silver baubles.
Utqiagvik, Alaska, formally known as Barrow, just plunged into polar darkness that will last the next two months. On Saturday the sun will set on the city of 4,300 residents for the final time of 2019. The next dawn will be on Jan. 23, 2020. That is a period of more than 60 days of total darkness.
A recent analysis that compares the cost of family ski vacations determined that Indy Pass resorts can provide a long weekend at an independent authentic ski area for less than half the cost of a major resort. The study found the average cost for a family of four was $885 compared to $1,868 at a big resort.
While Indy Pass resorts may not have the luxury amenities of the bigger, more posh resorts, they offer an uncrowded , family-friendly environment, great terrain and great snow conditions.
Tickets are now on sale for Hotel California – Original Eagles Tribute showing at the Caboto Club in Windsor on Feb. 20. Tickets start at $40.74.
There’s a new reason to head to Canada’s Wonderland during the winter season. The park has been transformed into a magical winter wonderland. WinterFest is now officially underway and takes place on select dates until Dec. 31. Winter festival-goers will experience enchanting themed areas adorned with more than five million holiday lights, festive decor and three huge Christmas trees.
Park officials claim WinterFest is one of Canada’s most spectacular winter events where friends and families can create memories and new traditions during the holiday season.
WinterFest activities include ice skating on Snow Flake Lake in front of the iconic Wonder Mountain, a nightly tree-lighting ceremony, live holiday shows, strolling performers, select famil rides and interactive attractions like cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus, writing letters to Santa at the North Pole Post Office and creating take-home keepsakes at Sally’s Christmas Crafts.
There is still time to take in Saturday’s Walkerville Brewery’s Holiday Extravaganza loaded with festive entertainment, food and drink, shopping and, of course, craft beer. Each year the company debuts its holiday seasonal. Be among the first to taste this year’s release. The event runs from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Get into the holiday spirit with a St. Clair Christmas. The show at Chrysler Theatre in Windsor Dec. 6, 7, 12 and 13 features a medley of light-hearted, slightly reworked numbers from the 1950s and 60s in keeping with the season. Tickets are on sale at the Chrysler Theatre box office at 519-252-6579.
An Instagram couple from Germany has been slammed after requesting over $10,000 from strangers to fund their African adventure because they refuse to get a job and pay for the expense themselves.
In order to keep their travelling lifestyle up-to-date, the couple have been relying on the gal’s mother who is forced to work two jobs to help the married couple pay for their expenses. Now that their mother is drained, the couple have set up a GoFundMe page where they asked strangers to donate so they could ride a tandem bike across Africa.
After the couple’s plea went viral, people couldn’t help but shame them for requesting money from those who actually work to survive.
The York-Durham Heritage Railway welcomes children – both in age and at heart – to another annual Santa Train season in Uxbridge. Beginning now and running through Dec. 22, Kris Kringle will greet passengers at the YDHR heritage train. The preserved relic from the 1950s has been transformed into sparkling splendour for the holiday season. The heritage train travels the scenic Durham countryside to Stouffville and back.
The Santa Train experience has been a popular family destination for many years. There is a magician, balloons, singers and Santa himself as well as treats for the kids at the end of the ride. For more information visit www.ydhr.ca.
Readers are invited to submit their questions and suggestions on travel close to home or far away to travel writer Bob Boughner at firstname.lastname@example.org