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Meet the USA's Newest National Park

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/22/2019, 3:45 PM

The United States has a new national park. Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore has been re-designated Indiana Dunes National Park thanks to a provision in the same spending bill that averted another government shutdown on February 15.  The Northwest Indiana site, which has been a federally protected national lakeshore since 1966, stretches for 15 miles along Lake Michigan, encompassing 15,000 acres...

Airline Ticketing Will Include Nonbinary Gender Option

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/19/2019, 3:30 PM

The major U.S. airlines are changing their online ticketing sites so that passengers can identify gender with options other than male and female.  According to the Associated Press, American, Delta, United, Southwest, Alaska, and JetBlue are all working on introducing selections such as "undisclosed," "unspecified," or "Mx.," a non-gendered alternative to Mr. or Ms.  Industry trade group Airlines...

Superbloom! In California, Flowergeddon Approaches

By Claybourne Elder

Posted on 02/14/2019, 5:00 AM

Superbloom may sound like the name of a '90s rock band to you, but in Borrego Springs, California, it means millions of rare wildflowers carpeting thousands of acres of desert. And Superbloom is coming soon. In California's ecosystem, seeds might hide dormant for years until conditions are perfect, and this year, there are signs they have been awakened by recent wildfires and intense rains. Co...

Sazerac Cocktail Museum to Open in New Orleans

By Jay Gentile

Posted on 02/13/2019, 6:00 AM

Anyone who’s been to New Orleans knows that drinking is a big deal in the Big Easy. So it’s perhaps no surprise that the city that claims to have invented the cocktail will soon be home to a new experience dedicated to the official local drink, the Sazerac.   For those who’ve never tasted one, the Sazerac is one of America’s longest-running cocktails: a mix of cognac, bourbon, or rye whiskey...

You Can Go Standup Paddleboarding at San Antonio's River Walk Now

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/12/2019, 9:30 PM

If you feel your city sightseeing hasn't done enough to test your balance and core strength lately, here's a good remedy: a new way to see San Antonio. Local company SUP SATX now offers lessons and tours in standup paddleboarding—which involves standing or kneeling on a surfboard while using an oar to propel yourself forward—along the city's namesake waterway. After a 30-minute lesson, paddl...

Mascot Hall of Fame Ready to Rev Up Crowds Near Chicago

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/12/2019, 12:00 AM

Original Phillie Phanatic Dave Raymond founded the Mascot Hall of Fame in 2005 to pay tribute to professional and college sports teams' costumed crowd pleasers. The enterprise started out online-only, but after a five-year, multimillion-dollar project, there's now a brick-and-mortar-and-faux-fur building in Whiting, Indiana, on the southern shore of Lake Michigan, about a 45-minute drive from dow...

In Nevada, a School for Stolen Native American Kids Will Be a Museum

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/11/2019, 12:00 AM

Starting in the late 19th century, the U.S. government forced tens of thousands of Native American children to leave home and attend boarding schools with the goal of assimilating students into the dominant Euro-American culture.  While providing a basic education, the schools also often required Native attendees to do manual labor and forbade them from speaking their languages, carrying out cultu...

Finally! After Years of Waiting, TWA Hotel at JFK Opens Reservations

By Michele Herrmann

Posted on 02/08/2019, 10:45 PM

Booking a room at the TWA Hotel at JFK Airport is off to a lovely start. On Valentine’s Day, Thursday, Feb. 14, at noon, reservations open for stays beginning May 15, 2019.   The grand opening is an illustrious second act for what was once known as the TWA Flight Center, a major hub during the Jet Age era. Designed by architect Eero Saarinen and opened in 1962, the distinctive terminal, cons...

Rare Civil War Artifacts Debut at Philly’s Constitution Museum

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 02/08/2019, 2:00 AM

Philadelphia's National Constitution Center—chartered by Congress to "disseminate information about the U.S. Constitution on a nonpartisan basis"—is adding a new permanent exhibit recounting a crucial chapter in that document's history.  Opening May 9, "Civil War and Reconstruction: The Battle for Freedom and Equality" will use interactive multimedia and scores of historical artifacts to illustra...

Key West Bans Common Types of Sunscreen

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 02/08/2019, 1:00 AM

In a late effort to revive its rapidly dying coral reef system, the island city of Key West, the crown of the Florida Keys, will ban sales of all sunscreen containing the chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. "Various studies indicate the two chemicals can increase coral bleaching, cause mortality in developing coral and cause genetic damage to corals and other marine organisms," stated the offi...

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