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Top Events USA news blog where we hope to keep you up to date with the news about top events across the USA

Monday, January 31, 2011

Blooming on Hawaii’s Garden Isle

Winter is an ideal time of year to visit the Garden Island. While most of the country is enduring the chilliness of winter, Kaua‘i is sizzling with some events and festivals ..... and here are some of them.

Leilani Rivera Bond’s 17th Annual Hula Hö‘ike on February 5 features Hawaiian music and dances by Hälau Hula ‘O Leilani and special guest artists.

The Zonta Club of Kaua‘i will hold its Eat Dessert First fundraiser on February 11 at the Courtyard by Marriott Kauai at Coconut Beach. The event features desserts from Kaua‘i chefs, fruit and cheese trays, a silent auction, prize drawings, and live island-style entertainment.

The cultural festival E Pili Kakou I Ho‘okahi Lahui from February 18 to 20 brings together accomplished Kumu Hula (instructors) and cultural specialists to teach workshops in all styles of hula and chanting, and share stories and spirituality behind the dance in a non-competitive and open environment. The festival also showcases arts and crafts, food, music, and entertainment unique to Hawai‘i.

Waimea Town Celebration on February 25 and 26 offers live top-line entertainment .... and crafts, games and product booths, along with a rodeo, softball, and three-man basketball tournament. Events on February 26 include a 10K run, canoe race, RC car race, ice cream eating contest, and ukulele competition.

The inaugural Garden Isle Tri-fest on March 12 and 23 features a variety of events at the Kaua'i Marriott Resort at Kalapaki Beach in Lihue Kaua'i.

A week of festivities honoring Prince Jonah Kühiö Kalaniana‘ole, one of Hawai‘i’s most beloved monarchs, takes place from March 19 to 26 in Po‘ipü.

For more information about top events in Hawaii take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Hawaii.

For information about Kaua‘i – Hawai‘i’s Island of Discovery – visit www.KauaiDiscovery.com

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Mardi Gras in Fort Walton Beach

A little bit of New Orleans is coming to Fort Walton Beach, Florida, at its very own “Mardi Gras 2011” celebration on Saturday, February 12. Because it’s Valentine’s weekend, the theme this year will be “Love on the Island.” Sponsored by the Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce and its annual sponsors, “Mardi Gras on the Island” is a full day of activities, starting with the Mardi Gras Parade on Okaloosa Island at 11am.
There will be beads, treats, and even more beads as the colorful floats make their way down Santa Rosa Blvd. Stick around after the parade and enjoy a festive Block Party sponsored by Helen Back on Amberjack Drive. There will be games for the kids, vendors with exotic items, and food galore.  It’s a family-friendly way to make a day of it!
Later that evening, the Chamber will host the Mardi Gras Ball at the Emerald Coast Conference Center from 8 pm to Midnight.  Come in costume or come in your favorite gown - this is the time to bring out your Mardi Gras finery, enjoy the sounds of the “Swingin’ Dick Tracys,” and sample food items provided by Chamber-member restaurants.  
“Mardi Gras 2011 – Love on the Island” is sponsored by the Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce, A to Z Security and Sound, the City of Fort Walton Beach, Cox, Cumulus Broadcasting, Emerald Coast Tourism Development Council, Fort Walton Beach Medical Center, Golden Corral-Fort Walton Beach, Helen Back, Image Printing and Digital Services, Northwest Florida Daily News, Qantum, ResortQuest, and White-Wilson Medical Center. 
For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida
For more information visit www.fwbchamber.com/mardigras

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

400 Years of Virginia History

Throughout 2011, Henricus Historical Park will celebrate 400 years of history in the Richmond Region, Virginia, as the site of North America's second successful English settlement. 
During the year-long celebration, Henricus Historical Park and Chesterfield County invite visitors to explore life as it was 400 years ago in Colonial Virginia with special events at Henricus Historical Park. Unique attractions and comfortable accommodations in surrounding Chesterfield County make this the perfect family destination.
The 400th Commemoration events at Henricus Historical Park will observe the Citie of Henricus from 1611 to 1622 and its impact on our culture today. 
The beginnings of the American educational tradition will come to life March 26 and 27 during Henricus Colledge. The first University chartered in North America will be explored through lectures, discussions and exhibits. 
Visitors are invited to learn about the science and technology of 17th-century medical care on May 7 and 8 during the Mount Malady event. Guests will find out how America's first hospital developed and implemented medical procedures and practices. On July 23-24 visitors can learn about early Colonial tobacco during Tobacco – The First Successful Commercial Export event. 
To culminate the year-long events, the 400th Commemoration of Henricus will be celebrated with Publick Days and the Godspeed September 17 and 18. This special event will feature 100 living history interpreters from around the country portraying both English colonists and native inhabitants of circa 1611 Virginia. Interpreters will occupy the English city, the Indian site Arrohateck, and the Godspeed from Jamestown Settlement at the waterfront, demonstrating the commercial, mechanical, agricultural, domestic, and military skills of both cultures as would have been observed between the years 1611-1622.
For more information about top events in Virginia take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Virginia
For more information about all events taking place during "The Year of Henricus," please visit www.henricus.org 

Battle of Wilson's Creek

To observe the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Wilson’s Creek just outside Springfield, Missouri, the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield Foundation is planning a commemoration August 12 to 14.

This event will include a full-scale Civil War battle reenactment, period civilian activities, crafts, educational activities, historical information booths, and much more. It will be on property north of the battlefield, and all proceeds will support the battlefield.

The conflict that threatened the future of the nation came home for the residents of southwest Missouri in August 1861, when two armies descended on the oak hills south of Springfield. The Battle of Wilson’s Creek, the second major Civil War battle, decided the fate of Missouri and defined its role in the war. More than 2,500 Union and Confederate soldiers were killed, wounded or missing after the battle.

In 1961 on the 100th anniversary of the battle, Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield was dedicated, becoming one of the best preserved and most pristine Civil War sites in the National Park System. Today, more than 150 years later, the events there are still remembered. Visitors to the park can walk along the Wire Road like the young soldiers who fought and died, relive the battle from the perspective of the Ray family and understand the impact of the war through educational exhibits and artifacts in the Civil War Museum and Visitors Center.

Visit the nation’s historical sites over the next four years – the Sesquicentennial Anniversary of the Civil War – to keep the meaning of these special places alive for future generations.

For more information about top events in Missouri take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Missouri.

To learn more about the Springfield area visit www.SpringfieldAdventures.com

Monday, January 24, 2011

Cincinnati to Host World Choir Games

The 2012 World Choir Games (WCG), the largest choral competition in the world, will be held in Cincinnati, Ohio from July 4 to 14, 2012 – the first time the event will have been held in North America. It has previously been held in Austria, Germany, China and South Korea.

The WCG takes place every two years and is the signature event of Interkultur, a Germany-based organization that produces international choral events. Inspired by the Olympic ideal, the goal of the WCG is to unite people from all nations through singing in peaceful competition.

The 2012 World Choir Games is expected to host 400 choirs from more than 70 countries; bring together 20,000 participants, including performers, staff, delegations and international jury members; and deliver up to 200,000 spectators at the WCG events.

There will be 23 different musical categories evaluated by an impartial international jury. The categories: Children’s Choirs, Young Children’s Choirs, Youth Choirs of Equal Voices, Mixed Youth Choirs, Male Choirs, Male Chamber Choirs, Young Male Choirs, Mixed Boys Choirs, Female Choirs, Female Chamber Choirs, Mixed Choirs, Mixed Chamber Choirs, Musica Sacra, Music of Religions, Contemporary Music, Popular Choral Music, Folklore, Scenic Folklore (with choreography), Show Choir, Jazz, Gospel, Spiritual and Barbershop.

The World Choir Games is divided into two weeks. There will be Opening Ceremonies in Cincinnati USA on July 4 and 10, 2012. There will be Closing Ceremonies on July 8 and 14, 2012. Of the estimated 400+ choirs participating, close to 50% will compete in each week. A handful of choirs may perform across the two weeks.

For more information about top events in Ohio take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Ohio.

For more information on the 2012 World Choir Games visit www.2012worldchoirgames.com

Hispanic Culture Events in Atlanta

Fiesta Atlanta is Atlanta’s largest annual Hispanic outdoor festival and is one of a number of major events in the region which celebrates Hispanic culture and heritage and recognizes the contributions of Hispanic Americans to the United States.

The 5th annual Fiesta Atlanta on Sunday May 1 at Centennial Olympic Park in the heart of Atlanta is also the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the southeast. Fiesta Atlanta features a daylong celebration of Latino culture, featuring continuous live musical performances on two stages by international, national and local recording artists, sponsor displays with many free product samples, arts and crafts and authentic Latin foods.

The City of Conyers, 30 miles east of Atlanta, is the home of the Fiesta Georgia which serves as the unofficial kickoff to Georgia’s Hispanic Heritage Month with a day-long celebration of Latino culture and music festival in the Georgia International Horse Park. Over 30,000 people typically attend.

The 4th annual Hispanic Achievement & Business Leadership Awards (HABLA) will take place on Thursday, October 13 at 103 West in the Buckhead financial district of Atlanta. HABLA serves as the closing ceremony to Hispanic Heritage month in Atlanta. 

The Atlanta Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) takes place on Sunday, November 6 at Atlantic Station. Atlanta Día de los Muertos is a long-established Mexican celebration that brings together family and friends to remember past friends and family members. Atlanta Day of the Dead is an interactive, educational and cultural celebration of Mexican culture. The festival features live musical and cultural performances, traditional altars and activities for children, sponsor displays with free product samples, arts and crafts, and authentic food. 

For more information about top events in Georgia take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Georgia.

For more information on these events visit www.lanzagroup.com

Palm Beach Events

Between its 38 cities, Palm Beach County offers an array of premier entertaining activities and events. Here are a few over the next few months.

The crown jewel of art fairs, the American International Fine Art Fair (AIFAF) is at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, West Palm Beach from February 5 to 13. Some 80 exhibitors from over 13 countries representing fine art – from classical antiquity to contemporary – return for the fair’s 15th year in The Palm Beaches.

Renowned international dealers present fine jewelry, art and antiques – showcasing premium examples in furniture, ceramics, artwork, jewels and watches from over 200 international exhibitors – are at the same venue for the Palm Beach Jewelry, Art & Antique Show from February 18 to 22.

The ArtiGras Fine Art Festival in Jupiter from February 19 to 21 has grown from a local art show to a nationally recognized fine arts festival.

Now in its 49th year, the Delray Affair in Delray Beach from April 15 to 17 is an affair to remember. It is held along Atlantic Avenue in the downtown area of Delray Beach, known as the Village by the Sea. South Florida’s oldest and largest outdoor festival, it is a street festival in every sense of the word.

And summer officially starts with SunFest in Downtown West Palm Beach (this year from April 27 to May 1) – the largest music and art festival in Florida, spotlighting just about every musical genre. Listen to tunes, sip cold drinks, and scope out the vistas around downtown West Palm Beach’s new waterfront.

For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida.

For more information on events in The Palm Beaches visit www.PalmBeachFl.com/events 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Spring into Baton Rouge in 2011

Baton Rouge, Louisiana is buzzing with festivals this spring,  pulsating a unique rhythm with its vibrant music scene, exceptional art and tasty cuisine. Discover the capital city’s rich heritage while experiencing its exciting culture.

Enjoy a star-studded concert in Louisiana State University’s Tiger Stadium at Bayou Country Superfest May 28 and 29. Previous performers include Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift, Brooks and Dunn, Keith Urban and Jason Aldean. The 2011 lineup will feature Tim McGraw, Sugarland, Kenny Chesney, Billy Currington and the Zac Brown Band.

The capital city will be filled with blues, music blues of course. Head to the Baton Rouge Blues Festival on May 7. This festival boasts headliners such as Delbert McClinton, Jimmie Vaughan, great local entertainment and spicy Louisiana jambalaya.

Art and music lovers will enjoy FestForAll, an entire weekend of art and entertainment downtown. Experience this premier art and music festival on April 30 and May 1. Visitors can shop for local artwork while viewing demonstrations, watching theater performances, listening to live music and tasting a variety of Louisiana’s signature cuisine. FestForAll also features a Children's Village on the lower grounds of Louisiana's Old State Capitol that will feature musicians, puppeteers, storytellers, jugglers, magicians, stilt walkers and hands-on art activities. 

Baton Rouge offers a variety of experiences, from cuisine and entertainment to architecture and history, from nature-based swamp tours to nationally ranked golf courses. Mardi Gras can be a family experience here with parades in New Roads, Port Allen, Spanish Town and Downtown Baton Rouge.

For more information about top events in Louisiana take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Louisiana.

For mote information on events and festivals in Baton Rouge visit www.visitbatonrouge.com

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

“Coming Home” on Mississippi Gulf Coast

The Spring Pilgrimage is "Coming Home”. When March 26 – April 3 arrives, it will be six years since the Gulf Coast Council of Garden Clubs held its last Spring Pilgrimage. Hurricane Katrina in 2005 destroyed homes and gardens, many of which have only recently been completely restored. "Coming Home" will be the very appropriate theme of the return of this 58-year tradition of hospitality.

From Pascagoula to Pass Christian, the eight-day event will feature approximately 50 elegant homes, gardens and historic landmarks, all free of charge to visit, thanks to the individual garden clubs and Gulf Coast business sponsors.

The "Coming Home" Spring Pilgrimage will officially open at 9am, Saturday, March 26 with ceremonies and refreshments at the Mary C. O'Keefe Cultural Center of Arts and Education, 1600 Government Street, Ocean Springs, Miss. The closing ceremonies will be on the grounds of the Michael and Janet McElroy home (pictured here), 533 E. Scenic Drive, Pass Christian, Miss, at 5pm, Sunday, April 3.

The first day, Saturday, March 26, will include visits to six homes in Ocean Springs hosted by the Ocean Springs Garden Club. On Sunday, Gautier Garden Club will present exhibits, displays and local artistic wares as well as a period flower show at "The Old Place”.

Monday morning visitors may tour four historic buildings in Bay St. Louis. In the afternoon, the tour will start at the new Town Green and City Hall in Long Beach with additional stops at the new Catholic church and two homes.

Tuesday will include tours of historic Beauvoir and the Biloxi Lighthouse in the morning followed by three homes in the afternoon, hosted by the Biloxi Garden Club.

The Beach Garden Society will show two homes Wednesday morning. This will be followed by a Gulf Hills (Ocean Springs) tour of the Gulf Hills Hotel and two homes on Wednesday afternoon.

Thursday, visitors will visit homes as well as have the opportunity to attend a landscaping seminar present by the Florence Gardens Garden Club, followed by nature walk in the morning, followed by visits to three residences in the afternoon.

Friday morning the Gulfport Garden Club will host visits to three homes and the historical courthouse, followed by two churches and a residence in the afternoon. Saturday morning will find visitors a walking tour in historic Pascagoula, followed by visits to two homes. In the afternoon, the Moss Point Garden Club will have three homes available for viewing, including a display by Gulf Coast Traditional Rug Hookers.

Sunday will bring visitors to Pass Christian, where they can visit three homes and see the concluding ceremonies in the afternoon at the home of Michael and Janet McElroy. Concurrently, they will be able to attend Art in the Pass, an annual juried art show in War Memorial Park.

For more information about top events in Mississippi take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Mississippi.

For more information on the Mississippi Gulf Coast Spring Pilgrimage visit www.springpilgrimage.webs.com

Monday, January 17, 2011

February is Museum Month in San Diego

Throughout February 2011, visitors to San Diego have the opportunity to experience the region's rich cultural offerings at half-price during San Diego Museum Month. Guests can participate by picking up a free San Diego Museum Month Pass at any area Macy's location; with the pass, they can receive half-price admission for up to four guests per visit at 40 of San Diego's museums, cultural attractions and historical sites.

Visitors can take advantage of San Diego Museum Month at facilities located throughout the region; for example:

The USS Midway Museum, Maritime Museum of San Diego and The New Children's Museum in downtown San Diego;
The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego and Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institute of Oceanography in La Jolla;
LUX Art Institute and the San Diego Botanical Garden in Encinitas;
13 world-class facilities like the Mingei International Museum, the Museum of Photographic Arts, Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park, which is often referred to as the "Smithsonian of the West."
Visitors can pick up a San Diego Museum Month Pass, valid February 1 to 28, 2011, at any Macy's store location in San Diego County or neighboring Temecula and El Centro. 

San Diego Museum Month was created in 1989 by the San Diego Museum Council to promote the region's museums, historical sites and cultural offerings. In 2010, nearly 24,000 visitors used Museum Month Passes to explore San Diego museums at half-price.

For more information about top events in California take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in California.

For more information on San Diego offerings, including exciting vacation packages and valuable coupons for attractions, restaurants and more, visit the San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau at www.sandiego.org

Tampa Bay – A Festival Destination

In Tampa Bay, any excuse to celebrate will do and locals break out the fireworks, parade floats and live entertainment for the city’s fantastic line-up of festivals.

The cool and breezy months of January through March draw the largest concentration of festivals. Right now, until January 22, Tampa Bay is celebrating its heart and soul and ethnic diversity at the Black Heritage Festival. There are events all over the Tampa Bay area.

The Gasparilla Children’s Parade and “Piratechnic” Extravaganza on January 22 is part of Tampa’s annual series of pirate-themed Gasparilla activities. This alcohol-free family event is held each year on the Saturday before the colorful Gasparilla Pirate Fest Invasion and Parade of Pirates.

The 106th annual Florida State Fair from February 10 to 21 will feature freebies with your paid admission.

The streets of Channel District and Ybor City come ablaze on February 12 for the Sant' Yago Night Parade; and Tampa's historical Ybor City showcases its ethnic roots with Fiesta Day on February 26.

From March 3 to 13 the Florida Strawberry Festival celebrates the bountiful harvest of the strawberry that has made Plant City, Florida, the “Winter Strawberry Capital of the World.”

Discover an enchanted realm of wizards and warriors amongst gourmet treats and entertainment every weekend from February 26 to April 17 (plus Friday March 11) at the Bay Area Renaissance Festival located at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI).

The annual Apollo Beach Manatee Arts Festival on March 11 and 12 is a major arts and crafts show that promotes the visual and performing arts as well as awareness and preservation of the endangered Florida manatee.

For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida.

For a comprehensive list of activities in and around the Bay area, visit Tampa Bay at www.VisitTampaBay.com

Friday, January 14, 2011

Valentine Celebration in Colorado Rockies

“Romance in the Rockies,” Gunnison-Crested Butte’s annual Valentine’s celebration of love, returns from February 8  to 14. 

Not only are there concerts, brunch at the yurt, yoga and massage workshops for couples, a Valentine’s chocolate class for kids and a theatrical celebration of food, but you can romance the one you love with a sleigh-ride dinner, dog sledding adventure and outstanding vacation packages. 

A Theatrical Celebration of Food will bring together local chefs, restaurateurs and playwrights for lively competition and collaboration of artistic culinary and theatrical writing skills on February 11 and 12 at the Gunnison Arts Center. 

Yoga for the Peaceful in Crested Butte is offering a Partner Yoga and Tantra Workshop on February 12 from 5 – 7 p.m. and a Partner Massage Workshop on February 13 from 4 – 6 p.m.

Brunch at the Yurt is a premiere way to spend a Sunday morning with selections prepared by local chefs such as homemade yogurt; granola; pastries; creamy brown sugar polenta; sausage; Gruyere and Swiss chard strata; and white bean, potato and kale frittata. Put on skis or snowshoes to get to the Crested Butte Nordic Center’s Magic Meadows yurt and back at your pace on February 13. 

Gunnison-Crested Butte is nestled among almost two million acres of pristine wilderness in southwest Colorado. Winter sports enthusiasts know the area for its world-class alpine skiing and snowboarding at Crested Butte Mountain Resort, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and ice fishing. Crested Butte has been identified as one of the most romantic ski resorts in the West by Ski Snowboard America & Canada.

For more information about top events in Colorado take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Colorado

For more information on Valentine’s Week in Gunnison-Crested Butte visit www.GunnisonCrestedButte.com

Thursday, January 13, 2011

New York City Winter Offers

New York City is casting the spotlight on Harlem during Black History Month in February featuring new ways for New Yorkers and visitors to explore the neighborhood and take advantage of some of the best culture, restaurants and entertainment that New York City has to offer.

Cultural institutions highlighted throughout the month include: the Apollo Theater, Dwyer Cultural Center, El Museo de Barrio, Harlem Stage, the Museum of the City of New York, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and The Studio Museum in Harlem.

It is part of New York City’s marketing campaigns which include the City’s first-ever Broadway Week, the Get More NYC campaign, the return of the Off-Broadway promotion On the House and NYC Restaurant Week. The Get More NYC campaign, with programs offered throughout January and February, highlights special offers across retail, dining, culture, entertainment and hotels.

During the first-ever Broadway Week, January 24 to February 10, two-for-one tickets go on sale for 18 popular Broadway shows. Theatergoers can also enter the official AT&T Broadway Week Sweepstakes for a chance to win Broadway tickets for an entire year.

 NYC Restaurant Week® from January 24 to February 6 features more than 300 participating restaurants, including 35 new eateries, making it the largest NYC Restaurant Week in the program’s 19-year history.

The third annual On the House, an Off-Broadway program supported by media partner Time Out New York, offers two-for-one tickets to more than 30 Off-Broadway performances from January 24 to February 13.

For more information about top events in New York take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in New York.

For more detail on all of New York City’s winter programs and offers, visit www.nycgo.com.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Free Entry Weekends at California’s Gateway to Yosemite

Yosemite National Park will again be offering free entry weekends in 2011, with the first one this week as a celebration of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day (January 17). Tourism officials say the free entry days are not only the perfect chance to explore the scenic park, but the surrounding gateway region as well.

“Yosemite is obviously the main attraction in the region, but it brings people here where they find much more,” said Jarrod Lyman of the Yosemite Sierra Visitors Bureau which represents Madera County, California’s Gateway to Yosemite. “When they discover things like Bass Lake, the Madera Wine Trail and other popular attractions, they realize there is much to see in the gateway region.”

MaderaCounty surrounds Highway 41, the most traveled entrance in to Yosemite. Located at the south entrance to the park, the entrance is the closest to popular spots like the Mariposa Grove of giant sequoias, Glacier Point and tunnel view.

Madera County is also home to numerous art galleries and history museums. The region claims more artists per capita than any other in the country, and the rich history stemming back to Native American tribes, the gold rush and logging industry are on display throughout the county.

Organizations such as the Madera Arts Council and Sierra Art Trail hold numerous events to acquaint visitors with the galleries and works of Madera County, while the Consortium of Southern Yosemite Museums represents nine museums showcasing everything from clothing dating as far back as the 1700’s to gold panning, logging and even a working 100 year old steam engine, on which you can ride through the Sierra National Forest.

For more information about top events in California take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in California.

For more information visit www.YosemiteThisYear.com

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Winter Activities in Alaska

Alaskans have always embraced winter, and are increasingly encouraging travelers to do the same with a lineup of participation-required activities around the state. Yukigassen – a team snowball fight tournament that will be held for the first time in the United States in Anchorage – is the freshest 2011 offering.

Drawing thousands of spectators every year in Japan, Yukigassen will be the newest program addition to the 76th annual Fur Rendezvous, a winter celebration in Anchorage held from February 25 to March 6. Called "Fur Rondy" by the locals, the festival is known for its wacky, family-friendly events, and Yukigassen shouldn't prove any different. 

Originating from the town of Sobetsu in Japan, "yuki" translates to snow, and "gassen" to battle – and an epic snow battle it will be. Two teams of seven follow strict game regulations enforced by Yukigassen officials on a rectangular court with chateaus, shelters and flags.

Visitors are encouraged to get involved in a Yukigassen team, as well as in other hands-on activities throughout the state. The possibilities range from skiing to dog mushing and snowmobiling:

The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race draws spectators from around the world to Alaska each year. This winter, PAWS for Adventure not only will teach guests to drive their own team of sled dogs on multi-day tours out of Fairbanks, but also will host them overnight at the company's newly acquired Tolovana Roadhouse, the first transfer point in the original lifesaving serum run to Nome, which the Iditarod celebrates.

For more information about top events in Alaska take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Alaska

To plan a trip to Alaska visit www.TravelAlaska.com

Monday, January 10, 2011

Saint Paul Winter Carnival Celebrates 125th Anniversary

The Saint Paul Winter Carnival, the oldest winter festival in the United States, has brought family-friendly events and community pride to Saint Paul and the Twin Cities metro area, Minnesota, since 1886 and this year the “Coolest Celebration on Earth”™ celebrates its 125th anniversary from January 27 to February 6.

In honor of the sesquicentennial celebration, the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation Winter Carnival organizers have strived to create and promote 125 events under this year’s festival umbrella. All events take place in the City of Saint Paul and are free and open to the public, unless otherwise noted.

In addition to its traditional events, the 2011 calendar of activities also includes numerous outdoor athletic events, supports the Saint Paul arts scene and rallies behind the U of M Golden Gophers in a variety of sports.

Most events will take place in Downtown Saint Paul in and around Rice Park and Landmark Center, Lake Phalen, the Como Park area, as well as the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. Its traditional events include the Ice Carving Competition (in addition to the spectacular ice carvings, Rice Park will host live music from local artists daily), snow sculptures, historic winter carnival displays, fireworks, and the Royal Coronation. With the help of the Carnival’s legendary characters – King Boreas and the Royal Family, Vulcanus Rex and his Krewe, and the Royal Order of the Klondike Kates – the Saint Paul Winter Carnival will be 11 days of excitement and entertainment for all ages.

Among the new festivities for 2011 is the Winter Carnival Talent Contest.

For more information about top events in Minnesota take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Minnesota.

For the most current information on the 125th Saint Paul Winter Carnival visit www.winter-carnival.com

Friday, January 7, 2011

Skiing, Sledding, Skating in Wintertime Cleveland Plus

Winter in Cleveland, Ohio is about more than just sweaters, scarves, mittens and boots. Winter is a time to experience the best of the season in a region that truly embraces the weather. So, whether they're racing down a 1,000-foot-long ice chute or cheering on the city's ice hockey team, visitors should know there's no better time to experience the unexpected side of Cleveland Plus than in the wintertime.

There are a number of festivals and events, among them, on February 19, the Brite Winter, a local festival held celebrating winter on the Cuyahoga River. This year, the Brite Winter festival, held at the newly created Rivergate Park adjacent to Hart Crane Memorial Park in the Flats, features a bonfire with marshmallows, a wintry mini-golf course, food, beverages and live music all outdoors.

From February 26 to March 6 the Greater Cleveland Auto Show is an exciting ten-day event held at the I-X Center that features more than 1,000 production, concept and classic vehicles. This includes domestic and imported vehicles, sport utility vehicles, mini vans and experimental, never-been-seen-before vehicles for enthusiasts alike. In addition to the cars and other vehicles, the auto show features celebrity sports figures and autograph signings

The Cleveland International Film Festival from March 21 to April 3 features two weeks of more than 250 films originating from nearly 80 countries. Visiting filmmakers, panel discussion and student screenings are all festival highlights.

For more information about top events in Ohio take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Ohio.

For more information on Wintertime in Cleveland Plus visit www.positivelycleveland.com

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Winter Destination Getaway Idea for Boat Lovers and Aficionados

The 2011 Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail Miami, one of the world’s largest boat shows, returns from February 17 to 21 with exciting features for everyone, from experienced boaters and divers to families and anyone who ever dreamed of owning a boat.

There will be new attractions aimed at on-the-water fun, travel and hands-on education.

It will showcase thousands of the newest powerboats, sailboats, engines, electronics and marine accessories from more than 2,000 leading manufacturers from around the world. With new attractions including the Dive & Travel Harbor featuring the ‘Be a Diver’ scuba pool, and the new Discover Boating Resource Center, a boating education experience offering free boat rides, on-the-water training courses, and daily seminars, the 2011 show is the ultimate destination to discover boating.

“There is no other boating event in the world that provides boaters with the opportunity to shop the best and biggest selection of boats and accessories. With thousands of products to choose from in one of the best boating destinations and dozens of activities the whole family can enjoy, the Miami International Boat Show is THE place to find out why life is better with a boat,” noted Cathy Rick-Joule, show manager.

In addition to the vast selection of boats and marine accessories for sale and hundreds of products making their world debuts, there is a wide array of attractions boaters of all ages can enjoy throughout the five-day event.

For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida.

For more information on the 2011 Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail Miami visit www.miamiboatshow.com/

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Kansas Kicks-Off Sesquicentennial with Kansas Day

As the country gears up for the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, history enthusiasts will be interested in learning the key role Kansas played in the actual beginning of the Civil War. The border wars between Kansas and Missouri and Kansas’s decision to be a free or slave state created an epicenter of events that led up to the Civil War. The Battle of Black Jack was the beginning of Civil War combat in Kansas, and is also the site where a growing number of historians agree that the American Civil War began. 

Celebrating its 150th birthday, Kansas will kick-off the year’s celebrations with Kansas Day on January 29, 2011. Planned activities for the entire weekend will take place at the State Capitol, at the Kansas Museum of History and at a number of historic sites throughout the state including Constitution Hall in Lecompton, Fort Hays, the John Brown Museum in Osawatomie and Kaw Mission in Council Grove. 

Practically every community in Kansas will be celebrating the Sesquicentennial. Its capital, Topeka, has played a significant role in the nation’s fight for freedom since its inception in 1854. Apart from special functions, visitors can experience Topeka’s pivotal role in American history at several first-class attractions including the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site & Museum, The Kansas Museum of History and the Kansas State Capitol. While you’re there, explore Topeka’s colorful past while experiencing the amenities of the present day, including 20 fascinating attractions, 16 art galleries, five performing arts facilities, established annual events, delectable dining and unique shopping.

For more information about top events in Kansas take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Kansas.

To see a listing of events celebrating the Sesquicentennial throughout the year, visit www.TravelKS.com, and click on the 150th icon.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Virginia Celebrates Three Major Anniversaries in 2011

World-class art exhibits, outdoor landmarks and new amusement park thrills keep visitors coming back to Virginia – and in 2011 they’ll be back to help Virginia celebrate three major anniversaries including the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War and Emancipation. 
More Civil War battles were fought in Virginia, by far, than in any other state. The stories of the people caught up in the cataclysmic event of their time are told at some of America's best museums and historic sites throughout Virginia. The anniversary commemoration of the battle of First Manassas in July 2011 kicks off a four year event in Virginia.
One of America's great natural treasures celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2011. Shenandoah National Park and its main artery, Skyline Drive, have been a favorite destination for travelers for generations. The park's abundant wildlife, stunning vistas and beautiful landscapes are legendary. There is a full slate of special programming by park rangers.

And finally there is the 75th Anniversary of Virginia State Parks which began as projects of the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. From Atlantic seashore to Appalachian mountains, Virginia's 35 state parks include the best of nature, camping, fishing, boating and hiking – along with some big surprises. At Virginia State Parks visitors can see bald eagles in the wild, attend a festival, explore a Civil War battlefield, spend the night in a yurt, go tubing on a river, explore an abandoned gold mine, go for a bike ride on 57 miles of an abandoned railroad bed, look for prehistoric sharks' teeth or go camping with their horse.

For more information about top events in Virginia take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Virginia
For more information visit Virginia at www.Virginia.org