Archive for the ‘US holidays and observances’ Category

Top Mother’s Day Trips

  • Posted by Jonna
  • April 19th 2013

Mother’s Day is just a few short weeks away (May 12, to be exact).  What do you get for the woman who has everything?  There’s only so many can openers one person should own at a time. What Mom really wants is more time with her darling children and/or precious grandchildren. So, why not take her on a quick weekend get-a-way, or a longer vacation?

Whether your mom is a fashionista, naturalist, or just a mom that wants to hang out, there’s a destination for you.  Our family took a lot of family vacations.  My parents showed us the United States from the back of a Ford, and I wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything.  So, one place I might like to take my mother is the Grand Canyon.  From just driving around the Canyon to hiking through it, there’s something for every level of activity.  With activities ranging from hiking along the rim to taking a free shuttle ride along the Scenic Hermit Road, or even taking a train aboard the Grand Canyon Railway, Mom will love it.

Ok, if that sounds something more like you dad would like, better scrap that idea.  His holiday isn’t for a couple months.  So, how about just a beach resort visit.  There are many places peppered throughout the United States a mom can relax with a nice lounge by the pool, a mani, pedi, or complete facial.  Treat Mom to a body massage to relived the stress and strain from her week, then take her out to a nice dinner and some quality time with her favorite child of the moment.  Depending on the location of your trip, you may be able to incorporate your stay with some wine tasting, art gallery visits, or even outlet mall shopping.

A couple days in New York City is good for almost anyone, including a fashion-forward thinking Mom.  Where better to catch up with great fashion than NYC.  From the Fashion District to all the hip boutiques your mom can stay on top of her game.  Plus, not to mention you could swing in a couple of your favorite things, too.  And, there is always time for a Broadway Show, a trip to the Guggenheim, MOMA, or the Bronx Zoo.  On my last trip to NYC, we managed to fine a street fair and found some great original work by a local artist.

My mom is also a huge baseball fan, so head out to a sporting event.  You can get as loud as you like and no one is going to “shush” you, too much.  And, eat all the things that are typically bad for you on the outside of the baseball stadium, but are perfectly acceptable during a ball game.  Buy her a Mother’s Day present of a jersey with her favorite players number and you are definitely nominated for kid of the year!

Trips are a lot of fun and you can bond with your mom.  What a great gift for her!  If you need to fly out for your trip, check out ParkRideFlyUSA.com for great parking rates at off-airport parking.  With lots at all the major airports, our vendors provide a guaranteed parking space, great rates, transportation to and from the airport terminal and luggage assistance.  You mom will love it that you planned ahead for a change!

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Earth Day – A Few Facts About the People Behind It

  • Posted by Jonna
  • April 17th 2013

redwood-trees-2Earth Day is about 4 days away.  But, who really started this conservation/ecology movement.  Well, in reality, it’s been going on for years.  Here’s a list of just a few conservationists and environmentalists.

  •  Earth Day was the brainchild of Senator Gaylord Nelson from Wisconsin.   He came up with the idea in 1969 after witnessing the devastation of the Santa Barbara, CA oil spill.  The impact on the environment, marine life, and the thousands of dolphins, sea birds and other animals due to this spill lead to Nelson’s drive to gather support for a political agenda.  Along with Senator Paul “Pete” McCloskey, Nelson introduced legislation and organized a grass-roots movement to bring environmental issues to the forefront of Americans’ minds.
  • John Muir was one of the very first conservationist and worked tirelessly to ensure that the wilderness would be preserved. His efforts led to the creation of Yosemite National Park, Sequoia National Park and more.  Muir was also one of the founders of the Sierra Club, one of the world’s most influential environmental groups. John Muir deeply influenced Theodore Roosevelt.
  • Theodore Roosevelt was an active conversationalist. He added 5 National Parks during his Presidential Term – Crater Lake National Park, Wind Cave National Park, National Game Preserve, Platt National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, and although he attempted to made the Grand Canyon a park, but lost, he did manage protect it by proclaiming the area a National Monument.
  • Rachel Carson is noted by some as the founder of the modern environmental movement.  She published a book in 1962 titled Silent Spring.  This described the devastating effects that pesticides have on the environment.  Although the chemical industry tried to indicate the claims were unfounded, they were later proved correct and DDT and other pesticides were banned in later years.
  • Henry David Thoreau was one of the very first activists for the environment.  He wrote a timely book entitled Walden, or A Life in the Woods. It is a must read for all environmentalist.  Thoreau wrote it after spending 2 years living simply on the shore of Walden Pond.  It is a meditation on nature and life.
  • Ed Begly, Jr.  is well known for  his environmentalist ways.  He is one of the first, in the 1970s, to drive an electric car.  His house is powered by both wind and solar power.

So, what are you doing for Earth Day?

 

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April Fools Day Pranks

  • Posted by Jonna
  • March 28th 2013

April Fools’ Day, where everyone is waiting for that prank: the kick me sign on the back, the salt and sugar mishmash, cellophane wrappings, the list goes on and on.  Of course, I am always looking for a better prank to play on one of my unsuspecting friends, family, etc.

In my quest, I found some really funny ones that I just want to pass on to you for a few giggles.

  • A very creative use of Dixie Cups!

  • Voted the best media hoax ever!  The Spaghetti Hoax.  One thing to bear in mind, at the time of this hoax, spaghetti wasn’t  widely consumed in England!

  • In 1996, Taco Bell ran an ad in the New York Times announcing the corporation had purchased the Liberty Bell.  Subsequently, the name would be changed to Taco Liberty Bell.  And, yes, the outcry was outrage.  Concerned citizens started bombarding the National Historic Park in Philadelphia voicing their collective concern.

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  • Sports Illustrated printed a story that a pitcher had been found that could throw a 165 MPH fastball.  Hayden Siddhartha Finch, or Sidd for short, was a student of yogic mastery, and that allowed him to excel at the fastball pitch.  Unfortunately for baseball lovers, Sidd was just a figment of a Sports Illustrated writer’s imagination.
  • Smell-o-Vision which allowed viewers to smell scents submitted over the airways was introduced by the BBC.  They later received congratulations by the viewers on how well it worked.
  • There is actually an online Hoax Museum.  Check it out.

We have all been the recipient of some good pranks or hoaxes, and its fun as long as no one or nothing gets harmed in the process.  I certainly hope that your April Fools Day is safe and fun for you!

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Crazy Facts About the Easter Bunny

  • Posted by Jonna
  • March 15th 2013

Easter postcard circa early 20th centurySome crazy facts about the Easter Bunny. Did you ever wonder where the Easter Bunny originated? I had no clue what the Easter Bunny had to do with Easter, AND, why did a furry, woodland mammal have a basket full of colored eggs?  It was a mystery to me, and all those I asked  until now.  I went on a quest to find out these answers and more!

A few years ago, back in B.C. times, pagans celebrated Spring as a source of renewal and rebirth after a harsh winter.  In celebration, pagan cultures would hold festivals.  One festival celebrated in Northern Europe by the pagans was in honor of Eostre or Eastre, the goddess of dawn, spring and fertility.  Eoster was closely linked to the hare and the egg, which are both symbols of fertility.

As Christianity spread, it was a common practice to sprinkle pagan rituals and ideas into the message to make transistion to Christianity easier.  As a result many pagan festivals were turned into Christian holidays to help convert them.  The Eostre festival was celebrated at the same time as the Christian Easter, so the two celebrations converged over time.  Cultures were blending, so it was only natural to incorporate the rabbit and eggs symbols into the Christian Easter.

The hare was first documented in conjunction with Easter by the Germans in the 1600s.  It became Oschter Haws, a rabbit that laid multi-colored eggs as gifts for good boys and girls.  He made the jump to the United States with the Pennsylvania Dutch in the 1700s, where he evolved into the Easter Bunny.  The Germans also started make Oschter Haws in chocolate in the 1800s and a fond tradition was born.  Seriously, who doesn’t love to snap the ears off of his/hers chocolate Easter Bunny?

If you are traveling this Spring for Easter, Passover, Spring Break, or just for fun, check out ParkRideFlyUSA.com for your off-airport parking needs.  With a network of vendors at every major airport, you get a great deal for your parking.  Not only do you get a ride to the airport terminal, but you have a reserved spot and luggage assistance.  No surprises here.  Only secured parking for the best price around.  Check it out!

 

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Spring Forward – Time Change Again!

  • Posted by Jonna
  • March 5th 2013

http://www.parkrideflyusa.comIt’s time to spring forward for the time change, yet again, on Sunday, March 10, 2013.  Almost the entire United States will set its clocks ahead one hour when Daylight Saving Time is back.

What exactly is Daylight Saving Time? The idea has been around for centuries, really.  Ben Franklin was one of the first to bring up the idea of Daylight Saving Time, or DST.  He wrote in an essay that since the sun rose so much earlier until the end of June, the day should start an earlier to save on the cost of candles.

Even in 1895, a New Zealand Postal Clerk, George Vernon Hudson, proposed one of the first daylight saving schedules so he could have more time after his work to devote to his hobby, entomology.  A few years later in 1905, William Willet from London, tried to bring about a daylight saving time mandate s io he would have more time to play golf in the evening.  However, it wasn’t until 1916 during World War I did German actually adopt a form of DST to save coal.  Most of Europe followed  suit, and later when the United States became more involved in the war effort Daylight Saving Time was first observed in the U.S.

Daylight Saving Time is not a Federal Mandate, and for this reason not all states observe the time change.  It is not observed in Hawaii, Arizona, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico,  and the Virgin Islands.

There are several safety points to DST, as well. For example, it is time the check your fire alarms! A good habit it to change the batteries in your alarms with every time change.  Make sure fire alarms and carbon monoxide alarms are in working order, and functioning.  A rule of thumb is to switch out your fire alarms every ten years, and carbon monoxide alarm should be changed every five years for optimal safety.  It’s also a good idea to go through your medicine cabinet and throw out expired medicine.  Old, out-of-date- medicine can lead to serious health problems if used.

So, get ready to lose an hour’s sleep on Sunday.  And, be prepared for your body to take almost a week or so to adjust to the change.  Look at it this way, it is a perfect time to take a Sunday afternoon nap!

If you are traveling, don’t forget to check out ParkRideFlyUSA.com’s great off-airport parking vendors.  We have a network of parking lots at all the major airports.  With great rates, transportation to and from the airport terminal, and a guaranteed parking space, your parking worries are no more!  some lots even offer car services like oil changes, car detailing, and more.  Give us a try!

 

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