Join the Live Webcast for Putting Mothers and Babies First

first_imgPosted on February 18, 2015August 10, 2016Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Thursday, February 26, 2015, 12:30-1:30pm ESTThe Leadership Studio, 10th Floor Kresge Building, 677 Huntington Ave., BostonJoin us with The Forum at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health for Putting Mothers and Babies First: Benefits across a lifetime – a panel discussion presented in collaboration with The GroundTruth Project and GlobalPost.One of the smartest investments a society can make is to foster the health and education of its mothers. Healthy mothers raise healthier children, which boosts the productivity and stability of communities and economies. Yet, maternal mortality remains a terrible and disproportionate reality, particularly in developing countries, where 99 percent of all maternal deaths occur. These deaths put the lives of infants and older children at risk. Traditional approaches address the needs of mothers and children separately, but growing efforts are breaking down those silos — embracing the continuum of mother and child health in the hopes of providing more effective care and resources. The hoped-for result? Health benefits to mothers, children and their families across their lifetimes.This Forum event will explore how to achieve those benefits, including providing basic care such as vaccinations, and how societies stand to thrive as a result. The panel will be moderated by Marissa Miley, Deputy Editor of Global Health for The GroundTruth Project, and includes the following experts:Ana Langer: Professor of the Practice of Public Health and Director of the Women and Health Initiative and Maternal Health Task Force, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthAlicia Yamin: Director, Program on Health Rights of Women and Children, François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthJoy Riggs-Perla: Director, Saving Newborn Lives, Save the ChildrenKirsten Gagnaire: Executive Director of the Mobile Alliance for Maternal ActionTune in for the live webcast by visiting the The Forum event page. Also follow and join the conversation by using #mothersbabiesfirst and following @ForumHSPH and @MHTF on Twitter.E-mail questions for the expert participants any time before or during the live webcast to, the Community Discussion page, or Tweet them to @ForumHSPH using #mothersbabiesfirst.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

9 Super Scary Nonprofit Website Mistakes

first_imgYour website lacks details about your nonprofit’s mission and vision.Why is your organization the nonprofit to support? What are you doing that’s different from others? Simply put, what makes your nonprofit stand out? It’s important that the answers to these questions are easy to find on your website! By spelling out your mission and vision, donors can easily understand what their donations will accomplish. Your website doesn’t feature your nonprofit’s latest news.Create (or maintain) a place on your organization’s to share your latest news and examples of your most recent content, such as interesting articles, upcoming events, and special projects. This type of content works well on a blog and you can also link to this content on social media and in your newsletter. Your website doesn’t feature endorsements and third-party reviews.Make sure your website includes ratings from GuideStar and Charity Navigator or a testimonial from a stakeholder. The effectiveness of your websites’ messages depends on the messenger. Let others help build your case and show that you are trustworthy. Your website doesn’t have social media links or a newsletter sign up.Social media is a key way to connect and communicate with supporters. Be sure that all those hours tweeting and blogging don’t go to waste: Provide links to your social media profiles and make it easy for supporters to see your content and share on their social media channel of choice.  If a new fan isn’t the social media type, an email newsletter is a great way to help them keep in touch. That’s why it’s important that your newsletter sign-up process is simple and seamless. Your website isn’t mobile-friendly.Take a moment to evaluate your website’s usability for mobile users. Open your website on a mobile device. Are your donation page and website easy to navigate on a tablet or phone? Your website’s content uses too many words to demonstrate your work.As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Pictures of people who benefitted from your services or volunteers in action can demonstrate your mission, illustrate the impact of your work, and complement your website’s text. Again, people’s attention spans are short. A compelling image will capture visitors’ attention and tell a story in a better way than multiple paragraphs of text.center_img Your website’s navigation doesn’t make sense.Your website should be organized according to the expectations of the people who come to your website. Instead of thinking how to present the information you want people to find, make it easy for your visitors to find the information they want. Back by popular demand to help you get ready for #GivingTuesday and Year-End -enjoy!Boo! That’s your website scaring you into reality. And the reality is that people’s short attention spans mean your website needs to provide visitors with easy access to everything in just three clicks. It must grab visitors’ attention, provide information, and spur visitors to action.Here are nine super scary website mistakes you should address before the year-end giving season is here and donors are too frightened to use your website!  Don’t wait…these website mistakes can result in the biggest horror of all: missing out on donations in December!Your website doesn’t have contact information.Make sure it’s easy for website users (and potential donors) to find your organization’s phone number, email address, or contact form. Also, make sure staff members know how to handle donor inquiries. Your website doesn’t have a clear ask for donations.Don’t be afraid to ask for donations on your website. Isn’t that the whole point of fundraising? Supporters will appreciate that you’ve made it easy for them to donate, so make that button shine! Network for Good always recommends you make the button big, bold and above “the scroll”. Plus, a smarter donation page will help you get donors to give, give big, and give again. Take advantage of our accredited Personal Fundraising Coaches to get hands-on help with your year-end fundraising activities. Schedule a call to learn more today.last_img read more

Rivaldo: I could’ve matched Firmino’s 50 goals at Man Utd

first_imgRoberto Firmino has seen his contribution at Liverpool saluted by Rivaldo, but the Brazilian legend believes he would have matched his 50-goal haul in the Premier League had he joined Manchester United.The Reds striker has become the first player from Brazil to hit a half-century of efforts in the English top-flight .That tally has been reached across 141 appearances, with Firmino’s game as much about creating space for others as it is hitting the back of the net. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Rivaldo was of a similar mould in his day, as a playmaking attacker, and the 2002 World Cup winner feels he could have thrived and set a sizeable benchmark for Brazilians in England had United seen one of their many efforts to bring him on board prove successful .“Roberto Firmino has become the first Brazilian player to reach 50 goals on Premier League and I must congratulate him for that achievement,” Barcelona great Rivaldo told Betfair .“He is a player of great personality, with a particular taste for scoring goals and also very clever on his movements near the opposite goal.“He didn’t play in the starting 11 at the last World Cup but looks like he will have a good chance of starring for his country in 2022 because he is a top forward.“Perhaps if I had signed for Manchester United when I had the opportunity, I could have achieved something similar to what Firmino is doing at Liverpool.“Of course, it would depend on the time spent there. But I did shape my style from a creative player, who only assisted others, into someone who could also score regularly.“In five seasons with Barcelona I scored 130 goals, so why couldn’t I have scored 50 or so in England? I think it would have been possible after four or five seasons there.”Rivaldo spent the best part of his career at Barcelona, with five years taken in at Camp Nou between 1997 and 2002.Firmino is now into his fifth season with Liverpool, with the 27-year-old having become a key component in Jurgen Klopp’s plans alongside Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah. Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

‘Rashford has to top Pogba on Man Utd penalty list’

first_imgManchester United have to hand penalty-taking duty to Marcus Rashford, says Paul Ince, with Paul Pogba’s miss against Wolves having sparked an unnecessary debate around a player who may not even be at the club much longer.A World Cup winner stepped up to the spot at Molineux, only to see his effort saved by Rui Patricio.Questions have been asked as to why Pogba was allowed to take the ball, despite winning the penalty, as Rashford once again crashed home from 12 yards on the opening day against Chelsea. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has sought to avoid being dragged into the argument, claiming that duties will be shared at Old Trafford, but Ince believes the man at the helm should be dictating to his players.The former United midfielder sees no reason why Pogba should be taking charge, especially as there is no guarantee that he will be sticking around amid ongoing talk of a possible move to Real Madrid.Ince told Paddy Power: “It’s down to Ole’s management.“He should be making it perfectly clear before they go on the pitch. He should be saying: ‘If there’s a penalty – Rashford, you’re taking it. If you’re not on the pitch – it’s Pogba, and so on.’“There’s a list of order there, it makes it transparent, and there’s none of this bickering about who scored when and who missed, it leaves no room for debate.“That’s where it comes down to Ole. He should be making it crystal clear that there is one penalty-taker and that’s it. He needs to show his leadership and tell the players that it’s the end of the theatricals, there’s one person only for the job.“There’s been people suggesting that Ole is trying to appease Pogba by letting him take penalties, but as the manager at one of the biggest clubs in the world that shouldn’t even be a thought.“You can’t work like that, you need to show that leadership. There’s no reason why he should feel the need to appease Pogba, if anything it should be the other way around.“For me, it’s clear who should be chosen, too. Marcus Rashford has never missed a penalty in senior football, he netted in United’s 4-0 opener against Chelsea, there’s an obvious choice here, he should be the penalty taker.“Look at his record, why would you go for anyone else?“We all miss them at times of course, but also a major consideration should be Pogba’s future. Will he even be here when the European window shuts? And if he is, will he leave in January anyway? Whereas you’ve got Rashford, who’s going to be around for four or five years, so why not just make him your man?”United will be back in Premier League action on Saturday when they play host to Crystal Palace, with Solskjaer hoping to see his side offer a positive response to the eventful 1-1 draw at Molineux. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Man Utd Rash from the spot once more in toothless display

first_imgThis is not what Manchester United fans had in mind after spanking Chelsea 4-0 on matchday one in the Premier League. With every passing game, that result is looking more and more like a false dawn. There was a feeling at the time that the scoreline did not adequately reflect the contest and so it is proving.United are a deeply flawed team; easy to read, easy to counter, easy to play against. For a well-organised team like Crystal Palace, they are an elaborate training exercise. Funnel the ball wide, see it off and go again.Palace did not need territory, they did not need possession to get a 2-1 win away at Old Trafford. They saw very little of the ball but got their two bullets in the chamber right on the money. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Jordan Ayew in the first half and Patrick van Aanholt right at the death put paid to United’s plans on the day, even if new signing Daniel James looked to have snaffled a point with a well-taken goal late on.Even that would not be enough for a side like United, who have spent big on restructuring their defence this summer but look as susceptible as ever. David de Gea might well have stayed for one more season at least but he needs to get his act together. No serious goalkeeper should be conceding the way he did to Van Aanholt.Aaron Wan-Bissaka, signed to settle a long-standing issue at right back, had a difficult day on that side. He was left dealing with Wilfried Zaha one on one as Palace hung in there for the last few minutes and selected the Ivorian as their only weapon on the break.That might have been the area from which possession was ceded to United for the James goal but it’s also where Zaha constructed the counterattack from which Van Aanholt shot past De Gea after Wan-Bissaka failed to clear.Patrick van Aanholt Crystal Palace Manchester United 240819More misery too from the spot for United, with Marcus Rashford restored to first-choice penalty taking duties. He was given a chance to level up the scores, whereas on Monday it was Paul Pogba looking to put United in the lead at Wolves.Same outcome. Rashford crashed his effort against the post in contrast to Pogba having his saved by Rui Patricio.It was as close United came to scoring before James’ goal against a disciplined Palace side; Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s new season threatened with derailment after only three matches.For the most part, United were the team with the ball but they failed to do much useful with it. The combination involving substitute Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay for the failed penalty kick was one of the few occasions United got in behind Palace and actually put a shot in on Vicente Guaita’s goal.Otherwise United’s attacking possession was marred by bad technique and bad decisions. Greenwood was introduced in place of Jesse Lingard very soon after the England international failed to trap a Pogba pass at the edge of the area that should have led to something more promising than the ball simply being frittered away.He was not the only one. It was a miserable day for Rashford up until his contribution for the goal in the 89th minute. He gave up the ball time and again in decent attacking positions. There were haphazard flicks to oblivion, there were through balls delivered behind the runners on breaks, there were shots taken from 35 to 40 yards that would not in a million years come close to being successful.He signed a new contract over the summer, worth some £200,000 per week, and Solskjaer has put 50 per cent of his striking faith in the 21-year-old, with Martial carrying the other part of the load with Romelu Lukaku sold without being replaced.It has left United with a big problem, in that there’s a clear split between starters and substitutes. All Solskjaer’s matchwinners are generally on the field of play from the beginning, with little in reserve to increase the on-field quality from the bench.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Manchester United 2019-20Their attacks are predictable, with Harry Maguire seeing most of the ball during the first half and expected from there to play it into Luke Shaw on the left. It led to one or two decent moments, not least a blocked James effort in the first half, but Guaita had scarcely put palm to ball up until the last knockings of the game.One or two flickers are not enough to create chances, let alone goals, and certainly not sufficient when goals are given up so easily at the other end.Victor Lindelof was pummelled in the air by Jeffrey Schlupp, whose fine aerial challenge was met on the run by compatriot Ayew. His finish was composed, having taken advantage of some poor Maguire positioning to get in to score.Not long after, Zaha sauntered in from the right wing, exchanged passes with Ayew, but saw his effort blocked when it could have been 2-0.United were in desperation mode early in the second half, all pretence of a game plan gone out of the window. James and Greenwood took up positions on the flanks with only McTominay and Pogba being retained as genuine midfielders. They had the upper hand in terms of the tempo of the game but still chances came and went.Martial shot over when being leaned upon by Martin Kelly and Old Trafford asked for a penalty. Earlier his pace had caused problems for Gary Cahill, who could have seen red not yellow for hauling the Frenchman down just outside the area.But that’s not enough for United. Balls into space for strikers to run onto won’t cut it at this level, no matter how quick they are.United need shape, pattern, a game plan, and they need to come up with it and fast. On this evidence they are more like the scuffed version of Solskjaer’s United we saw at the end of the season rather than the rejuvenated side at the outset of his reign.How long until the reset button is pressed again? Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

James suffers calf injury to add to Madrid fitness woes

first_imgReal Madrid have suffered another setback after it was confirmed James Rodriguez has suffered a calf injury.The midfielder started his side’s 1-1 draw with Real Valladolid on Saturday and was taken off before the hour mark, being replaced by Vinicius Junior.And the 28-year-old seemed to pick up an injury as Madrid revealed he had been sent for tests on Monday, though they do not know how long he will be kept out of action. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream “After the tests carried out today on our player James Rodríguez by the Real Madrid Medical Services he has been diagnosed with a muscle injury in the right soleus,” a statement read.”His recovery will continue to be assessed.”Madrid were already without the injured Eden Hazard and Ferland Mendy, while Marco Asensio has been ruled out for most of the season after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament.James had been expected to leave Madrid this summer until Asensio picked up his injury in pre-season.The ex-Monaco star had been linked with Napoli and Atletico Madrid upon his return to the Spanish capital from a two-year loan spell at Bayern Munich.Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis confirmed in June that they were in talks to sign James as coach Carlo Ancelotti wanted to reunite with his former Bayern player.However, De Laurentiis complained that Madrid were demanding too much for him and they ended up signing Mexico star Hirving Lozano from PSV instead. Saturday’s clash was James’ first competitive appearance for the club since May 2017 and he spoke of the  “unique feeling”  he had that playing at Santiago Bernabeu again.And the Colombia international earned praise from coach Zinedine Zidane for his performance despite the disappointing result.“James played a good match, he left the pitch because he was a little hurt and we prefer to not take risk,” Zidane told reporters. “But he did a good job, especially in the first half.”James has made 112 appearances since arriving at Madrid in 2014 and still has two years left on his contract.last_img read more

Czech Republic 2-3 N Ireland

first_imgPaddy McNair scored twice as Northern Ireland’s sublime first-half showing was enough to earn a thrilling 3-2 win over the Czech Republic on Monday.Michael O’Neill’s side suffered a disappointing Euro 2020 qualifying defeat to Netherlands on Thursday but bounced back in style with a superb opening 45 minutes.McNair got them on their way with a fine finish in the ninth minute before Jonny Evans doubled the advantage midway through the opening period. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career The impressive McNair scored a second five minutes prior to the break before the hosts set up a tense finale with two goals in as many minutes from Vladimir Darida and Alex Kral in the second half, but the away side saw out the win.We hold on to claim the win in Prague! #GAWA— Northern Ireland (@NorthernIreland) October 14, 2019The visitors started with a spring in their step and powered into a ninth-minute lead.Liam Boyce’s pass from the left wing found McNair on the edge of the penalty area and the Middlesbrough midfielder took a touch past Ladislav Krejci before slotting into the bottom-right corner.They deservedly doubled their advantage midway through the first half when Evans reacted quickly after a goalmouth scramble from a corner to scoop home his fourth international goal.McNair then scored his second after 40 minutes, latching onto Steven Davis’ throughball before rounding the onrushing Jiri Pavlenka and slotting into an empty net.The hosts improved markedly after the restart and reduced the deficit with quick-fire goals in the 67th and 68th minutes.First, Darida crashed an effort into the roof of the net from Zdenek Ondrasek’s lay-off before Kral superbly whipped into the bottom corner from 18 yards after turning inside Craig Cathcart.The resurgent hosts did most of the pressing in the closing stages – Ondrasek rightly seeing a goal ruled out in stoppage time after he had bundled the ball out of Michael McGovern’s hands – but Northern Ireland ultimately held on for an impressive win on the road.What does it mean? First-half blitz too much for hostsO’Neill said this game could be good practice ahead of a potential Euro 2020 play-off and he will be delighted with the way his side went about their business inside the opening 45 minutes. He will be less pleased with the way they lost focus in the second half, allowing the Czech Republic to get back into the game courtesy of some sloppy defending. McNair makes his markAfter scarcely featuring for Middlesbrough last season, the 24-year-old is very much back in favour this campaign, starting every game for the Championship side. That is bearing fruit for his country, with the former Manchester United man scoring two fine goals in what was a superb display at the heart of the Northern Ireland midfield.Simic run ragged by visitorsMaking just his second appearance for his country, Stefan Simic endured a game to forget. He was consistently out of position during a torrid opening 45 minutes and suffered the ignominy of being hauled off at the break.Key Opta Facts- Northern Ireland have won a friendly match away from home for the first time since August 2006 (v Finland).- Northern Ireland scored three first-half goals in an away international for the first time since March 2000 when they beat Malta 3-0.- 50 per cent of Jonny Evans’ four goals for Northern Ireland have come against Czech Republic, also scoring against them in a World Cup qualifier in September 2017.- McNair has netted three goals in his last four appearances for Northern Ireland after failing to score in his first 28 games for the national side.- Ondrasek has been involved in three goals in his two matches for the Czech Republic (1 goal, 2 assists).What’s next?The Czech Republic round off their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign with Group A games against Kosovo and Bulgaria next month, while Northern Ireland face a daunting double-header against Netherlands and Germany.last_img read more

Union edges Mountain View, 17-14

first_img GO —UNION 17, MOUNTAIN VIEW 14Union 7 0 7 3 – 17MV 7 0 0 7 0 – 14First quarterMV — Jack Mertens 6 run (Aiden Hargrove kick)U — Nile Jones 5 run (Christian Alcorn kick)Third quarterU — Lincoln Victor 3 run (Alcorn kick)Fourth quarterMV — Philip Earnhardt 4 run (Hargrove kick)U — Alcorn 23 FGINDIVIDUAL STATISTICSRUSHING: Mountain View — Jack Mertens 21-111, Tresean Foreman 8-72, Garrett Moen 5-8, Andrew Gulliford 1-2, Philip Earnhardt 1-(-2); Union — Jojo Siofele 11-107, Nile Jones 16-63, Lincoln Victor 8-110, Darien Chase 3-(-2).PASSING: Mountain View — Garrett Moen 14-22-126-1; Union — Lincoln Victor 5-9-58-1RECEIVING: Mountain View — Philip Earnhardt 3-28, Michael Bolds 3-46, Jack Mertens 1-7, Makai Anderson 5-42, Jordan Cook 1-3; Union — Darien Chase 1-12, Jojo Siofele 2-29, Alishawuan Taylor 2-6, Alex Vallejo 1-11. By Meg Wochnick, Columbian staff writer Published: August 31, 2018, 11:34pm Share: Union edges Mountain View, 17-14 Potential game-winning drive by Thunder ends in turnover 8 Photos Siofele, playing on both offense and defense, led Union (1-0) with 107 rushing yards on 11 carries — all coming in the second half after a 7-7 tie at halftime. Mountain View transfer Nile Jones got the start in the backfield, and had 48 of his 63 rushing yards in the first half.And Siofele had a first-hand look in the secondary on Mountain View’s final offensive series in what it hoped to be its game-winning drive after tying the game at 14-all with 6:44 to play.Senior quarterback Garrett Moen and the offense orchestrated its best scoring drive with 2:25 to play, and a possession after Union took its 17-14 lead on Alcorn’s field goal. Moen hit receivers Michael Bolds (24 yards), Makai Anderson (11) and Jack Mertens’ 12-yard first-down run put the Thunder at the Union 4. That was the deepest Mountain View got into Union territory since Mertens’ first-quarter touchdown that gave the Thunder an early 7-0 lead.But a lost fumble ended it hopes of an upset over a 4A Titans team that’s ranked as high as No. 1 in one preseason statewide poll. Share: By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Receive latest stories and local news in your email: By no means was this a perfect performance.Not by the Mountain View Thunder. Not by the Union Titans.There were turnovers (a number of them) and penalties (a lot of them) in a emotion-filled district-rivalry game.But in the Titans’ words postgame of a 17-14 nonleague football victory over 3A Mountain View, the second game of the McKenzie Stadium doubleheader, Friday’s squeaker of a win proved to be a reality check.“That showed us attention to detail is so important,” said Titans senior Jojo Siofele. “As long as we lock in on that, we can be great.”The Titans admitted they were far from that Friday night, yet two second-half scoring drives and a late-game turnover by the Thunder deep in Union territory was the difference. Christian Alcorn’s 29-yard go-ahead field goal with 2 minutes, 34 seconds left in the game proved to be the winning drive for the Titans. This is a Union team that returns many starters on both sides from last season’s 4A Greater St. Helens League title team, and is a top 5-ranked team statewide in a number of preseason polls.Union’s now won the past three meetings against Mountain View. The difference in the second half Friday for the Titans, Siofele said? They stopped forcing and slowed down.“We brought it together,” he said, “and got the win.”Union took a 14-7 lead to open the third quarter on a three-play, 35-yard scoring drive that took 46 seconds, capped by Lincoln Victor’s 3-yard touchdown run. Mountain View answered with 6:44 to play on a misdirection run by Phil Earnhardt leading to a game-tying touchdown.A penalty-filled second quarter resulted in zero points for both teams and killed a number of drives. No penalty was bigger than Mountain View’s block in the back pushing the Thunder back into a second-and-52 situation. Before that, Mountain View reached the Union 18 on three straight run plays by Tresean Foreman, who finished with two sacks and 72 yards rushing. Meg Wochnick Columbian staff writer (360) 735-4521 Union’s Alex Gonzales (24) drives Mountain View’s Makai Anderson (14) out of bounds in the fourth quarter at McKenzie Stadium on Friday night, Aug. 31, 2018. (Nathan Howard/The Columbian) Photo Gallery @MegWochnicklast_img read more

New 2017 Seven Seas Wellness Excursion and Spa Pairings

first_imgMIAMI, May 08, 2017 – Experience the Mediterranean with a different perspective, and renew the spirit; clear the mind; and recharge the body on new Seven Seas Wellness shore and spa pairings. Announced in March 2017, Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ new holistic wellness program is now available for Seven Seas Voyager guests to reserve on this summer’s Mediterranean voyages. Seven Seas Wellness combines a refreshing, low-impact activity in 10 Mediterranean destinations with one of five revitalizing treatments in the onboard Canyon Ranch SpaClub. “The response to the initial program announcement has been so great that we’ve decided also to offer the Seven Seas Wellness program in 2018,” said Jason Montague, president and CEO of the cruise line. “Regent Seven Seas Cruises is delighted to present a holistic wellness program that anyone can join in and provide a new way to take in the Mediterranean’s beauty and heritage. Throughout, Seven Seas Voyager’s exceptional staff and crew will take care of everything so guests can continue to bask in the glow of their Seven Seas Wellness experience.” Seven Seas Voyager guests can choose among 11 Seven Seas Wellness excursions, ranging from Tai Chi to Yoga, hydrothermal therapy to aromatherapy, and hiking and laughter, on their summer 2017 Mediterranean voyage: Tai ChiProvence (Marseille), France – De-stress and unwind with the ancient Chinese martial arts in a 19th century palace on Tai Chi in the Imperial Garden.Palma De Mallorca, Spain – Enjoy fresh sea air and breathtaking scenery as guests center their chi from either the Illuetta Bay or Can Antoni Pere Beach on Mallorca Meditation in Motion. YogaCorfu, Greece – Experience Corfiot filoxenia, a concept not adequately defined by the word “hospitality,” and learn about local culture, before practicing yoga and deep meditation in one of Greece’s most beautiful estates on The Generosity of Spirit.Monte Carlo, Monaco – Guests will calm the mind, increase focus, strength, and stamina, in the fast-paced, dance-like style of yoga that synchronizes breathing, while enjoying the spectacular Mediterranean panorama on Vinyasa Yoga on Monte Carlo.Taormina, Sicily – Guests take in the dramatic and contrasting coastlines, cliffs, and Mount Etna, as they practice poses from a high perch overlooking the charming seaside town on Taormina Terrace Yoga. Hydrothermal TherapyRome (Civitavecchia), Italy – Soak in the restorative mineral-rich, thermal springs, which has been visited by Popes and Kings throughout its thousand-year-old history on Thermal Baths of Popes.Sorrento, Italy – Enjoy a sprawling spa complex built on the site of an ancient Roman prototype, consisting of warm and cold thermal springs with rock grottos, mineral baths, pools and genuine Roman sauna rooms on Roman Baths and the Burning Fields. AromatherapyVenice, Italy – Visit the exhibition at the palace-turned-museum, where one room recreates a 16th century perfumer’s laboratory and guests can learn how to create their own perfume to take home on Venetian Scents at Palazzo Mocenigo.Amalfi/Positano, Italy– Be inspired and invigorated by the island’s calming presence, inherent spirit, and many natural gifts on a highlights tour, before visiting Carthusia, the famous and exclusive perfume laboratory on this full-day Capri for all Senses. Walking and LaughingPalma De Mallorca, Spain – Enjoy the benefits of lower-impact, body-toning Nordic walk up the hill to the 14th century Bellver Castle on Nordic Morning Walk.Palamos, Spain – Unlock the many health benefits of this atypical Laughter Therapy session, where guests giggle and laugh for a full-scale workout to release stress-busting endorphins on the Wellness of Laughter. With each Seven Seas Wellness excursion, guests can choose one of five rejuvenating and included treatments by Canyon Ranch SpaClub for a complete body and soul experience:Ocean Scrub – A wonderfully restorative, exfoliating body treatment that cools skin on contact, while antibacterial essence of laurel opens the airways and spirulina intensely hydrates.World of Relief Body Buff – Organic essential oils from around the world combined with organic Dead Sea salts that stimulates and exfoliates, and is finished with an application of biodynamic honey and essential oils that hydrates and nourishes.Vitamin Infusion Facial – This superb treatment delivers nutrients to the skin to reduce the signs of environmental damage from the sun, pollution and stress.Sole Rejuvenation – This deliciously relaxing foot scrub and massage relieves tension, soothes aches and puts the spring back in your step.Tangle Me Up Organic Body Wrap – Powerful antioxidant compounds found in Laminaria digitata algae work to firm and tone the skin, alleviating the appearance of cellulite and signs of aging, while helping to protect against cell damage from environmental toxins. The new Seven Seas Wellness program on Regent’s Seven Seas Voyager is available on seven- to 10-night Mediterranean itineraries departing May 22 through September 28, 2017, except aboard the July 25, 2017 voyage, and select 2018 sailings. There is a supplemental charge of US$299 per guest per wellness experience and spa service pairing. Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2017, Regent Seven Seas Cruises is the world’s most inclusive luxury cruise line with a four-ship fleet that visits more than 425 destinations around the world. Regent Seven Seas Cruises is currently undergoing a $125 million fleetwide refurbishment that will elevate the level of elegance found throughout the fleet to the standard set by Seven Seas Explorer, which entered service on July 20, 2016, and has since been recognized as the most luxurious ship ever built. A leader in luxury cruising, the line’s fares include all-suite accommodations, round-trip air, highly personalized service, exquisite cuisine, fine wines and spirits, unlimited internet access, sightseeing excursions in every port, gratuities, ground transfers and a pre-cruise hotel package for guests staying in concierge-level suites and higher. Beginning in summer 2017, Regent Seven Seas Cruises also will include Business Class air for all intercontinental flights. For more information about Seven Seas Wellness, Seven Seas Voyager and Regent Seven Seas Cruises or to make a reservation, please contact a professional travel agent, visit, or call 1-844-4REGENT (1-844-473-4368). For the latest news about Regent Seven Seas Cruises, please visit; like the line’s Facebook page; and follow @RegentCruises on Twitter.last_img read more

Tru by Hilton Opens First-Ever Dual-Brand Property with Home2 Suites by Hilton

first_imgSeptember 19, 2017 – MURFREESBORO, Tenn. and MCLEAN, Va. – Hilton (NYSE: HLT) today announced the opening of its first-ever Tru by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton dual-brand hotel located in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This marks the latest addition to Tru by Hilton’s robust pipeline of dual-brand hotels, which comprises 12.8 percent of the brand’s deals in various stages of development. With their complementary features and offerings, Tru by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton meet the needs of today’s travelers. While Tru by Hilton caters to shorter-term guests, Home2 Suites by Hilton’s all-suite accommodations provide an option for those seeking a longer stay, while maintaining their normal routine. The property’s modern, forward-thinking design – from large communal spaces to innovative technology offerings, like rapid charging stations – appeals to all generations of savvy business and leisure travelers, seeking a fresh, vibrant experience that’s grounded in value. “We are thrilled to see the Tru by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton dual-brand offering come to life here in Murfreesboro today,” said Alexandra Jaritz, global head, Tru by Hilton. “These two brands work well together with their focus on design and value, and their desire to provide a unique and fresh experience for guests. I’m certain the success of this hotel will set a benchmark for future dual-brand properties.” Tru by Hilton Murfreesboro is one of Tru by Hilton’s more than 420 hotels in various stages of development. This is the fifth Tru by Hilton location to open and it is part of a pipeline that could see nearly 10 hotels open by year-end. And, as of Q2 projections, more than 50 are expected to open in 2018. Tru by Hilton has achieved the fastest-growing pipeline in the history of the hospitality industry. “Tru and Home2 by Hilton are a perfect fit, filling a void in the midscale category with options for flexible lengths of stay,” said Alpesh Patel, chief executive officer, Kana Hotel Group. “We’re delighted to open the first dual-brand property and provide a new option for travelers who believe that being cost conscious and having a great stay don’t have to be mutually exclusive.” When completed, the new hotel will provide guests with smart and efficiently designed guest rooms and public spaces. Property features include:A reimagined, enlarged lobby with 2,880 square feet of public space with areas to work, play games, eat or lounge.A build-your-own complimentary “Top It” breakfast bar that has 30 sweet and savory toppings so guests can create their own healthy or indulgent morning masterpieces.Home2MKT for grab-and-go items, and the Inspired Table, a complimentary daily breakfast that includes more than 400 potential combinations.Modern rooms designed to make every square foot count, with natural light from oversized windows, 55″ TV with cable provided by DIRECTV and bright all-shower bathrooms with premium bath amenities.National- and local-brand gourmet snacks and drinks – including single-serve beer and wine – are available 24/7 in the “Eat. & Sip.” market located in the heart of the lobby.Tech-savvy amenities, including mobile check-in, Digital Key, free superfast Wi-Fi, remote printing, social media wall, lobby and market iPads, super-charging stations and accessibility to outlets everywhere.A fitness center that leverages the latest fitness trends through barre, TRX bands, free weights, cardio and flexibility gear, plus guests can get workout ideas from the fitness center tablet.Home2 Suites Spin2 Cycle, a combined laundry and fitness areaOutdoor saline pool, fire pit, gas grills and canopy seating area Owned by Kana Hotels, Tru by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton Murfreesboro are located at 909 North Thompson Lane, Bldg A & B. The property has 154 rooms total, with 79 for Tru by Hilton and 75 for Home2 by Hilton. Tru by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton Murfreesboro are part of Hilton Honors, the award-winning guest-loyalty program for Hilton’s 14 distinct hotel brands. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels save time and money and gain instant access to the benefits they care about most, such as an exclusive member discount, free Wi-Fi and a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay. Members can also redeem their Points for free nights, to gain access to unique events through the Hilton Honors auction platform or to make purchases with at with Amazon Shop with Points. More information can be found by visiting Tru by Hilton Murfreesboro and Home2 Suites by Hilton Murfreesboro. Learn more about Tru by Hilton at and and Home2 Suites by Hilton at and  About Tru by HiltonTru by Hilton is a game-changing midscale hotel brand providing a simplified and spirited approach that is grounded in value for business and leisure travelers. The brand offers modern and functional guest rooms and social connectivity with reimagined public spaces, including an open lobby comprised of four areas where guests can work, play, lounge and eat. Designed to appeal cross-generationally, guests will enjoy complimentary amenities including a Build Your Own ‘Top It’ breakfast, coffee and tea; optional mobile check-in and Digital Key; a multifunctional fitness center; and high-speed Wi-Fi. Single-serve wine and beer, premium snacks and light meal options will be available for purchase at a 24/7 retail market. Tru by Hilton is part of Hilton Honors, the award-winning guest-loyalty program for Hilton’s 14 distinct hotel brands. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount that can’t be found anywhere else, free standard Wi-Fi and digital amenities like digital check-in with room selection and Digital Key (select locations), available exclusively through the industry-leading Hilton Honors app. Learn more at and connect with Tru by Hilton via social media at Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram. About Home2 Suites by HiltonHome2 Suites by Hilton, one of the fastest-growing brands in the history of Hilton, is a mid-tier, all-suite award-winning extended-stay hotel concept designed to offer stylish accommodations with flexible guest room configurations and inspired amenities for the cost-conscious guest. With a commitment to environmentally friendly products and hotel operations, Home2 Suites offers complimentary breakfast selections with hundreds of combinations; innovative and customizable guest room design; laundry and fitness area; complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access; multiple outdoor spaces; 24-hour business center; expansive community spaces; and a pet-friendly environment. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount that can’t be found anywhere else, free standard Wi-Fi and digital amenities like digital check-in with room selection and Digital Key (select locations), available exclusively through the industry-leading Hilton Honors app. Visit for additional information or for franchising opportunities.last_img read more

Emphasis On Trafficking In Persons July 23 To 30

first_img The town hall meeting will be held at the Cathedral of St. Jago De La Vega at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 27, following the country tours on the same day. The Ministry of Justice will be hosting a series of activities to commemorate Trafficking in Persons Week from July 23 to 30, aimed at raising awareness of the offence and having the public recognize it as a national issue. Story Highlights Manager of the Trafficking in Persons Secretariat at the Ministry, Keshia West, said the Week will be highlighted by country tours in Rocky Point, Clarendon; and Spanish Town, St. Catherine, as well as a town hall meeting in St. Catherine. The Ministry of Justice will be hosting a series of activities to commemorate Trafficking in Persons Week from July 23 to 30, aimed at raising awareness of the offence and having the public recognize it as a national issue.Manager of the Trafficking in Persons Secretariat at the Ministry, Keshia West, said the Week will be highlighted by country tours in Rocky Point, Clarendon; and Spanish Town, St. Catherine, as well as a town hall meeting in St. Catherine.The town hall meeting will be held at the Cathedral of St. Jago De La Vega at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 27, following the country tours on the same day.“We are inviting citizens to come out, get information on Trafficking in Person and have their questions addressed. We want them to know that human trafficking is real in Jamaica and they should get the information to find out how to guard against becoming a victim,” Ms. West told  JIS News.Participants at  the town hall meeting will include the Permanent Secretary and Head of the National Task Force Against Trafficking in Persons (NATFATIP), Carol Palmer; Head of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Unit at the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), Deputy Superintendent of Police,  Carl Berry; Director of Safety and Security in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information; Assistant Superintendent  of  Police, Coleridge Minto; and Spanish Town Mayor, Councillor Norman Scott.The country tours will feature the dissemination of material and literature, and will see the experts interfacing with the public and facilitating discussions.Ms. West further advised that the Ministry of Justice, through NATFATIP, will also be screening a locally made documentary titled ‘Rescue’, which seeks to highlight the impact and extent of human trafficking Jamaica, as well as create awareness of the methods utilized by traffickers to recruit potential victims.“This is an activity that we are very passionate about; we are really enthusiastic. A lot of work has gone into the production and we believe it is important for persons to gain an understanding of what our situation is in Jamaica,” she said.The documentary, to be screened at the Ministry’s offices on July 24 and 28, is expected to be aired on commercial media.Additional initiatives for Trafficking in Persons Week include the pinning of local dignitaries and officials with the ‘blue heart’, signifying the local adoption of the universal symbol, the blue heart, in honour of human trafficking victims.This will be done at a press conference on Monday, July 24, at the Ministry.A church service on Sunday, July 23, at the Pentecostal City Mission Church, 11-15 Blount Street, Hannah Town in West Kingston, will kick start  the week’s activities.“The hosting of Trafficking in Persons Week seeks to raise awareness in Jamaica. The Government is well aware of the impact of human trafficking on victims and we believe it is a collaborative effort that will be required to stem this tide in Jamaica, so we are encouraging persons to come out to the various activities,” Ms. West said.July 30 is recognized globally as World Day Against Human Trafficking.The Week’s activities are being held under the theme: ‘Stop Human Trafficking: Everybody’s Business’.last_img read more

Tapestry Collection by Hilton Welcomes a Sweet New Addition With The Wilbur

first_imgThe brand’s first hotel in Pennsylvania, The Wilbur Lititz will bring a full-service hotel and restaurant to downtown Lititz LITITZ, Pa. and MCLEAN, Va. – Today, The Wilbur Lititz, Tapestry Collection by Hiltonjoins Tapestry Collection by Hilton’s growing collection of stylish, upscale hotels. Drawing inspiration from its origins as a chocolate factory, The Wilbur Lititz will offer guests the unique experience of staying in the former Wilbur Chocolate Factory, originally opened in the early 1930s. The property is conveniently located next to the Wilbur Market, a unique food hall, and additional downtown eateries and bakeries, including the Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery and the Wilbur Chocolate Museum. “The Wilbur Lititz is the brand’s first hotel in Pennsylvania, and it is also one that exudes the independent spirit of our brand by honoring the building’s unique history that is inherent to the destination,” said Jenna Hackett, global head, Tapestry Collection by Hilton. “Over the past year, Tapestry Collection has continued to form a well-rounded portfolio of hotels in key locations, from cities like Lititz, which offer a small-town feel rooted in rich history, to Caribbean destinations such as Bermuda and Jamaica.” In the heart of downtown Lititz, all 74 guest rooms in The Wilbur Lititz offer picturesque views of the charming Lititz community in addition to original exposed brick. Throughout the hotel, guests will also see one-of-a-kind artwork featuring authentic ads from the Wilbur Suchard partnership, images of the original factory and signage showcasing the hotel’s unique roots. “We are thrilled to be able to offer the best of both worlds to our guests; honoring the rich history of Lititz, while at the same time offering a thoroughly modern experience in the ‘coolest small town in America,’” said Michael O’Brien, president, Oak Tree Development Group. Upon arrival, guests will instantly feel the building’s remarkable history, accented with industrial features such as exposed brick walls as well as original metal and wood beam accents. Guests can also enjoy the onsite full-service restaurant, Blackworth Live Fire Grill, an open concept kitchen with wood burning grill, offering a farm to table menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The hotel also offers an on-site fitness center as well as two on-site meeting rooms, totaling 1,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. “I am excited and honored to be part of this project, bringing to life the iconic Wilbur Chocolate Factory building, said Jennifer Buchter, general manager, The Wilbur Lititz, Tapestry Collection by Hilton. “Our team at The Wilbur Lititz will be dedicated to providing an exceptional experience to visitors, while also sharing with them the history, charm and sense of community that Lititz has to offer.” The Wilbur Lititz is part of the award-winning Hilton Honors guest-loyalty program. Hilton Honors members who book directly have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount, free standard Wi-Fi and access to the Hilton Honors mobile app. Hilton Honors members who book a stay at The Wilbur Lititz from now until February 2020 are eligible to receive 1,000 Bonus Points per night. For more information on The Wilbur Lititz or to make a reservation, please visit The Wilbur Lititz, Tapestry Collection by Hilton. For more news on Tapestry Collection by Hilton, visit  About Tapestry Collection by Hilton Tapestry Collection by Hilton, launched in 2017, is a portfolio of upscale, original hotels that offers guests unique style, vibrant personality and an authentic connection to their destination. With plans for global expansion, every Tapestry Collection property is united by the reliability that comes with the Hilton name, in addition to the benefits of the award-winning Hilton Honors program. Learn more about Hilton’s upscale collection brand at, and connect with Tapestry Collection on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. About Hilton Hilton (NYSE: HLT) is a leading global hospitality company with a portfolio of 17 world-class brands comprising nearly 5,900 properties with more than 939,000 rooms, in 114 countries and territories. Dedicated to fulfilling its mission to be the world’s most hospitable company, Hilton earned a spot on the 2018 world’s best workplaces list, and has welcomed more than 3 billion guests in its 100-year history. Through the award-winning guest loyalty program Hilton Honors, more than 94 million members who book directly with Hilton can earn Points for hotel stays and experiences money can’t buy, plus enjoy instant benefits, including digital check-in with room selection, Digital Key, and Connected Room. Visit for more information, and connect with Hilton on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTubelast_img read more

New Crystal on Broadway Voyages Take Center Stage in 2020

first_imgCrystal Cruises brings award-winning talent from the Great White Way to its stages MIAMI, September 30, 2019 – Building on the tremendous feedback and enthusiasm from its guests, Crystal Cruises is announcing 20 new “Crystal on Broadway” theme cruises to its 2020 voyage roster. On 10 worldwide sailings each, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity will welcome to their stages Broadway stars, and on some occasions, choreographers, directors, costume designers and other talented artists and professionals from Broadway. The programming is presented through Crystal’s exclusive partnership with multi-Tony Award-winning producer Kevin McCollum, whose more than 25-year career in stage and theater includes credits for Rent, Motown: The Musical, West Side Story, In the Heights, Something Rotten! and the upcoming stage musical adaptations of Mrs. Doubtfire and The Devil Wears Prada.  McCollum and his creative team debuted two original songs from Mrs. Doubtfire aboard Crystal Serenity earlier this year. “The caliber of talent and star power featured on Crystal on Broadway voyages is truly impressive and we are happy to offer guests the world-class entertainment of Broadway no matter where in the world they are,” said Keith Cox, Crystal’s vice president of entertainment. “The performers and insiders that grace our stages for these programs are true experts in their crafts, with stories and perspectives that are as entertaining as their performances and presentations.” During the Crystal on Broadway voyages, guests are treated to varied selections of elaborate stage productions, solo acts, Q&A sessions and entertaining presentations from special guests. The programming perfectly complements Crystal’s own marquee of showstopping productions. Crystal on Broadway, The Show, featuring songs from the hit musicals Rent, Something Rotten! and West Side Story, debuted aboard both ships following their recent redesigns, while intimate piano performances in Avenue Saloon, dancing and music in the Stardust and Starlite clubs and an array of vocalists, string musicians and pianists in The Cove offer guests an abundance of choices each evening. Crystal Symphony’s 2020 Crystal on Broadway voyages include: January 5, “Golden Pacific Paragons,” round-trip San Diego June 7, “Joie de Vivre et Jardins,” Lisbon to London June 19, “North Cape Brilliance,” London to Copenhagen July 14, “Tsars & Scandinavian Splendor,” Stockholm to London July 25, “British Isles Brilliance,” round-trip London August 8, “Royal Military Tattoo & Norwegian Fjords,” London to Amsterdam August 19, “European Cultural Canvas,” Amsterdam to Barcelona September 1, “Masterpieces of the Mediterranean,” Barcelona to Venice September 11, “Adriatic & Greek Isles Rendezvous,” Venice to Athens October 11, “Monumental Holy Lands,” Barcelona to Athens Crystal Serenity’s 2020 Crystal on Broadway voyages include: May 22, “Marvels of the Mediterranean,” Barcelona to Rome September 28, “North American Treasures,” Québec City to New York City October 6, “Cultural Treasures & Natural Wonders,” New York City to Québec City October 14, “Autumn in the Maritimes,” Québec City to New York City October 22, ���Fall Foliage Sojourn,” New York City to Québec City November 12, “Tropical Island Tapestry,” round-trip Miami December 2, “Tropical Serenade,” round-trip Miami December 9, “Island Discoveries,” Miami to San Juan December 16, “Caribbean Kaleidoscope,” San Juan to Miami December 23, “Holidays in the Caribbean,” round-trip Miami  About Crystal Only the world-renowned Crystal Experience offers an unwavering, unparalleled standard of excellence and luxury across four distinct cruising options: Crystal Cruises, the World’s Most Awarded Luxury Cruise Line; Crystal River Cruises, the World’s Most Luxurious River Cruise Line; Crystal Yacht Cruises, offering boutique luxury and bold adventure in the world’s most elite harbors; and Crystal Expedition Cruises, taking Crystal’s acclaimed elegance to the farthest reaches of the world. Crystal has been recognized with top honors in the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards for a record 25 years; voted “World’s Best” by the readers of Travel + Leisure for 20 years; and won “Cruise Line of the Year” and “Most Luxurious Guest Experience” by Virtuoso for 2018 & 2019. Crystal is proud to be a platinum partner of the advisors of ASTA.  For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel advisor, call 888.799.2437, or Join the hundreds of thousands who subscribe to the Crystal Insider blog, follow Crystal Cruises’ Facebook page; @crystalcruises on Twitter and Instagram; @crystalrivercruises on Instagram; and engage in the conversation with #crystalcruises, #crystalrivercruises and #WhereLuxuryisPersonal.last_img read more

7 Mexican Craft Breweries You Need to Know

first_img The Best Fresh Hop Beers to Celebrate the Hop Harvest Getting to Know the Lithuanian Beer Scene As American craft breweries continue to dive into Mexican-style lagers, Mexico continues to develop a solid artisan beer scene of its own. Whether you’re headed to Mexico or not, check out some of these Mexican craft brews, if you can find them.There’s certainly nothing wrong with grabbing some traditional Mexican lagers, like Pacifico, Corona, Dos Equis, Tecate, or Modelo, but to pack in a little more flavor, these breweries are brewing up beers just as fine as their industry compatriots to the north.Baja BrewingSince 2007, expat Jordan Gardenhire has been brewing up quality brews in Baja. The company now has three brewpubs in Los Cabos and brews up eight core beers along with seasonal beers. Baja Brewing started shipping beer into the U.S. in 2013 with Cabotella, the brewery’s blonde ale. In 2016, the IPA Por Favor — known as Peyote Pale Ale in Mexico —made its way to the U.S. Last year, the brewery’s black ale, Escorpion Negro, began distribution. Currently, the beers are available in California, Utah, Arizona, and Chicago.Cerveza MinervaIn Jalisco, Cerveza Minerva makes an eclectic portfolio of beers, though they started with two original flagships, Kölsch and Vienna Lager. Today the main portfolio has seven beers, including a Citra IPA and the “ITA,” which is aged in tequila barrels. Seasonal beers made by Cerveza Minerva also include several winter specialty beers,  such as a Christmas Ale. Started in 2003, the brewery now has 30% of the craft beer market in Mexico, according to the brewery. Pabst started importing the brewery’s beers into the U.S. a few years ago.AquaMala Cerveza ArtesanalSince 2009, AguaMala has been situated less than a football field length away from the beach in Ensenada. With a tasting room fashioned from old shipping containers, AguaMala strives to be respectful to the ocean with its sustainable practices. AguaMala’s flagship line includes Mako 2.0 pale ale, Siren Pilsner, Red Tide Red IPA, Stingray Oatmeal Stout, Shipyard Imperial IPA, and Mantis Wit. Aguamala beers have made it across the border and into Southern California.Cerveza UrbanaIn the rich craft beer state of Baja, Cerveza Urbana is making its beers in Mexicali. The brewery has two flagship brews: a West Coast IPA made with Citra and Simcoe called Crossover IPA, and a blonde ale made with Vienna malts and Cascade and Centennial hops. Quest Beverage began importing Cerveza Urbana brews earlier this year.Cerveza RrëyFounded in 2015 in Monterrey, Cerveza Rrëy takes care to make its beers close to classic styles and with proper ingredients. The brewery makes a Kölsch with classic German ingredients including Vienna and Pilsner malts and Hallertau hops. Its London-style ale is based on the common English brown ales in the U.K. and is made with English malts and Goldings hops. Like Urbana, Rrëy began its journey into the U.S. with Quest earlier this year.Cervecería de ColimaCervecería de Colima has a flagship line of beers made for the beach — except maybe its porter. The line includes the lager Colimita, tropical lager Cayaco, pale ale Paramo, and session IPA Piedra Lisa. The specialty beers dive a bit heavier, with an IPA, as well as an imperial porter and imperial pilsner. There’s also a long line of collaboration beers Cerveceria de Colima has made with other breweries, including a Brut IPA.Cervecería InsurgenteYet another brewery in Baja California and Tijuana, Insurgente has three flagship beers, including Darkness, a light beer made for seafood with pilsner and wheat malts as well as orange and coriander. An American brown ale accompanies “the brewery’s most coveted beer” La Lupulosa, a West Coast IPA. The brewery has also made its way just north of the border in SoCal. 11 of the Best Low-Calorie Craft Beers for Watching Your Beer Belly The Most Unique Collaboration Beers in the U.S. Editors’ Recommendations Kentucky Breweries are Plowing Ahead on the Bourbon Trail last_img read more

8 Fun and Easy Tips for Planning the Perfect Staycation

first_img The Complete Guide for Learning How to Mow a Lawn How to Thrift Like a Pro: Tips for Making the Most of Secondhand Style Editors’ Recommendations 7 Tips for Planning the Perfect Last-Minute Summer Vacation Why You Should Skip the Suave and Try Custom Hair Care Products Artem Bali/UnsplashDon’t have the funds to go on a splashy vacation this summer? No problem! Plan a staycation instead. This low-budget option may seem like a cop out, but when done right, can actually be just as restorative and fun as your run-of-the-mill vacation.To help you get started, we’ve laid out some of our favorite tips and tricks for planning the perfect holiday from the comfort of your own home.Tips for Planning the Perfect StaycationMake an ItineraryA staycation should feel like any other vacation, so it’s important to make an itinerary! The goal is to transform your home town into a place for exploration and fun, so fill up your schedule like you would for any other trip. This way you won’t fall into the trap of just lounging around at home (and may even stumble upon something you never knew your city had to offer!).Glenn Carstens Peters/UnsplashUnplugUnplug, unplug, unplug. Just because you’re home doesn’t mean you have to stay connected to your phone or email. In fact, it’s crucial that you don’t. No matter the location, a vacation is about you, so take the time to recharge away from the white noise.Take PhotosSlip into a true holiday vibe by documenting your trip with touristy photos. Sure, it’s a little cheesy, but part of the fun of traveling is snapping pics and sharing them with loved ones. Bonus points if you come up with a playful hashtag (#holistay, anyone?) and invite your Instagram followers to tag along for the stay-at-home journey.Deep CleanThe day before your staycation, do a deep clean of your house or hire someone to do it for you. Spruce up your space and you’ll feel as though you’ve landed in a posh boutique hotel, which will up the fantasy by at least 125%. And don’t be shy about leaving yourself a discreet chocolate mint on your freshly laundered pillowcase.Use a PseudonymOne of the best things about traveling is that you can be whoever you wanna be, so why not thrown on an alias or two? Go to a bar or café you’ve never been to before and try out a new persona — we’re talking fake name, job, heck, even an accent. Truly, no better way to be a tourist than to, you know, actually be one, so have fun with a little make believe.Class it UpJust because you’re not staying at a hotel doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the amenities. Put some of the money you’d normally use on lodging toward a night of bougie cocktails at the fanciest hotel in your area. Make sure to wear your snazziest duds and chat up the other travelers about their adventures.Ori Song/UnsplashTreat YourselfIf you really want to amp up the luxury vacation feel, get thee to a day spa! You saved on baggage fees, expensive dinners, and hotel expenditures, so might as well use some of that money to treat yourself to a round of massages, facials, and steams. A staycation can be a great time to pamper yourself like you wouldn’t normally be able to on a “regular” vacation, so take advantage of the opportunity.Walk it OutSee home with fresh eyes by taking a walking tour of your city. Nowadays, there are a bevy of different guided tours available, many of which center on titillating themes like the homes of long-dead poets, street food hot spots, or even the oldest trees in the area. If you live in a major city, chances are you can book one of these tours online or even download an app to guide yourself. If you live in a smaller community, check in with the local historical society to see if they could offer tour suggestions. Deep Sleep: The World’s Most Incredible Underwater Hotel Rooms last_img read more

Bookers Newest Bourbon Shiny Barrel Batch is an Ode to Bygone Traditions

first_img Editors’ Recommendations The Best Wheated Bourbon Alternatives to Pappy The second release in the 2019 series of ç is here, and this one is a nod to an employee tradition we wish we had in our own jobs.Booker’s Bourbon 2019-02 is named “Shiny Barrel Batch” in honor of a practice undertaken by rackhouse workers back in the day. You see, it can get hot in a rackhouse, and sometimes, you just need a little something to quench that thirst (even if it happens to be barrel proof bourbon). Rackhouse workers would sneak tastes from barrels and, in doing so, would inadvertently wipe the dust off the barrel.This was a sign to Master Distiller Booker Noe — he knew the best bourbons were kept in those shined up barrels (if you’re up on your whisky lingo, you might know these barrels as “honey barrels”). These barrels were what would go on to be the basis for the Booker’s Bourbon we get to enjoy today.(Like we said, we wish we could sneak a sip of barrel-proof bourbon during a long work day.)While this practice isn’t engaged in today at the Jim Beam distillery (or any distillery, we can assume), the fun story associated with the “tradition” has thankfully been brought back to light in the form of this bourbon.Aged for six years, five months, and one day, Shiny Barrel Batch is unfiltered and bottled at cask strength, 124 proof (62% alcohol by volume). Like many other releases from Booker’s you’ll find a sweet nose and a full body that is rich in vanilla and some caramel. The high alcohol content is evident, but is not overwhelming, especially when a few drops of water or an ice cube are added for slight dilution.The first release of the year, “Teresa’s Batch” was released in March and was named in honor of longtime distillery employee Teresa Wittemer. Both of 2019’s releases follow in the line of the previous years’ releases, which are named after people, things, or traditions that Booker Noe himself was particularly fond of.Booker’s “Shiny Barrel Batch” retails for around $80 and can be found in limited qualities across the country. The Best New-School Kentucky Distilleries If You Haven’t Visited the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, What Are You Waiting For? What is Bourbon? A Brief History of America’s Whiskey All the New Whiskies You Need to Drink This Falllast_img read more

The Best American Liqueur

first_img Getting to Know Rhum Agricole, Rum’s Grassy Sibling The Manual Spirit Awards 2019: The Best Craft Liquor Made in America Written by Sam SlaughterCopy editing by Nicole Raney and Jeremy AbramsPhotography by  Riley Young and Dan BakerVideo by Riley YoungArt direction and page layout by Genevieve PoblanoCreative team: Will Hawkins and Chris Raymond The Best American Gin How to Enjoy It in a CocktailLiqueurs, especially bitter liqueurs, lend themselves to cocktails as a balancing act for other ingredients. For this recipe, we looked elsewhere than classic drinks. Since Townshend’s Distillery Bluebird Alpine Liqueur is such a distinct spirit, we created a completely new cocktail to match it. This warm drink uses a sangria-like base. The sweetness of simple syrup, honey, and apple brandy highlight the spicy botanicals of Bluebird. We think it’s perfect to sip on after a day on the slopes or spent outside in nature.Alpine and Apple PunchGlass: Irish Coffee MugTools: Slow cooker1 bottle bold red wine.5 bottle Bluebird Alpine Liqueur.25 cup apple brandy3 tbsp cinnamon simple syrup1 tbsp honeyClove-studded orange peels, for garnishRed apple slices, for garnishMethod: Add ingredients to a slow cooker and set to simmer. Add apple slices. Stir to dissolve honey. Once heated, serve with a clove-studded orange peel. Makes four drinks.Best Liqueur Runners-UpBerry Berry CordialWood Hat Spirits – New Florence, MissouriUsing a blue corn distillate and local blackberries, this cordial has intense yet sweet and smooth berry notes in all facets.Black Trumpet Blueberry CordialTamworth Distilling – Tamworth, New HampshireThe mushrooms in this cordial balance the blueberries for a unique drinking experience — a great blend of sweet and umami. How to Drink Absinthe and Live to Tell the Tale PalateAn initial burst of sweetness is followed by big spice notes — more cinnamon and angelica. Some orange notes come out, as well as saffron and a hint of cumin. NoseFennel and other spices immediately make themselves known, swimming in a sea of honeyed apple sweetness. The more you smell it, the more pronounced some of the spice notes, such as cinnamon, become. Credits Editors’ Recommendations The Manual Spirit Awards recognize the best craft liquors distilled in the U.S. We blind-tasted bottles from around the country in eight categories — Bourbon, Single Malt Whiskey, Rye Whiskey, Gin, Vodka, Unaged Rum, Aged Rum, and Liqueur — to determine our champions. Each of the winners was judged on aroma, palate, and finish. Cheers to your next drink and to American craft spirits.Best LiqueurTownshend’s Distillery Bluebird Alpine LiqueurPortland, OregonLiqueurs are an interesting and often overlooked liquor category. A liqueur, at its most basic, is a mix of a base spirit (it doesn’t matter which), sweetener (sugar, honey, et cetera), and flavorings of some sort. These flavorings can be anything, such as fruits, herbs, botanicals, and spices. Depending on the final product, one ingredient or a whole host of ingredients (as is the case with as amari or disgestifs) can be added, leading to an intensely complex liquid. To be legally considered a liqueur in the United States and Canada, sweetener equal to at least 2.5% of the finished liqueur must be added.For our inaugural year of the Liqueur category in The Manual Spirit Awards, our winner, Townshend’s Distillery’s Bluebird Alpine Liqueur, is a prime example of how much flavor can be packed into a spirit. On the website, Townshend’s lists angelica and fennel as two of the ingredients, but it’s clear that many more are featured. Bittersweet, it’s meant to be a West Coast take on traditional alpine liqueurs, which were consumed before meals, after meals, or whenever those in the Alps felt like a little pick-me-up. While you can take Bluebird as a shot, the depth of flavor is clearly meant to be played with in cocktails.Bluebird Alpine Liqueur is 38% alcohol by volume and available in Oregon. It can also be shipped to 42 states through various online outlets.About the DistilleryTownshend’s Distillery grew out of Townshend’s Tea Company, which has been selling loose leaf teas since 2006 in Portland, Oregon. Townshend’s also has a kombucha brand, Brew Dr. Kombucha. The distillery arm of the company creates a variety of herbal and botanical spirits from kombucha distillate, a mix of tea and sugar that is fermented and then distilled. In addition to Bluebird, Townshend’s has seven other core spirits and a small-batch experimental line dubbed the Idle Hands series. The core releases are Townshend’s Gin, Townshend’s White Rose (white tea and rose petal spirit), Spice Tea Spirit, Smoke Tea Spirit, Sweet Tea Spirit, Townshend’s Kashmiri Amaro, and Townshend’s Pacific Northwest Fernet.Tasting Notes FinishRefreshing and medium-length, as the botanicals hang around on the palate. If You Haven’t Visited the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, What Are You Waiting For?last_img read more

How to Make a Cuban Sandwich According to Chefs

first_img Editors’ Recommendations Mark Livingston/Getty ImagesA South Florida creation dating back to the turn of the century, the Cuban sandwich (also known as the Cubano) is a flavorful spin on the classic ham and cheese. The Cubano often includes creative additions and ingredient swaps, but at its essence, this grilled sandwich involves Cuban bread, thin-sliced ham, roasted pork, deli pickles, and a hearty swipe of mustard. It’s a handheld masterpiece that appeals to all flavor centers … and if you’re armed with the following seven useful tips from pro chefs, the Cuban sandwich can be easily re-created in the comfort of your own kitchen.Pay attention to the marinades used for your pork and pickles.The rich umami of roasted pork and the bright tang of pickled cucumbers are crucial to the Cuban sandwich’s appeal, so it’s important to get your brines, marinades, and cooking times right. Chef Lisa Toro of The Liquor Store in Memphis, Tennessee uses a “12- to 16-hour seasoned and roasted pork shoulder” for her Cuban sandwiches, allowing the slow marination process and gentle roasting to infuse the pork with as much flavor as possible.Chef Julian Medina of Latineria in New York City tells us that “the key ingredients to an amazing Cuban sandwich are the pork and the pickles. Marinate the pork shoulder for two days in a mix of garlic, fresh herbs and olive oil, then slow-roast it so the meat gets a nice sear all around it. For the pickles, make [a brine] with rice vinegar, dill, and chiles de Arbol for a tart and spicy aspect.”Don’t skimp on the quality of cheese.Look, we get it. The cheese counter is a notorious money vortex, and it can feel a bit silly to drop big bucks on a block of dairy that’s intended for a sandwich rather than a cheese board. But when it comes to a well-executed Cubano, quality cheese is a must-have. And according to culinary director Tom Berry of the soon-to-open Mariel in Boston, MA only one type of cheese will do: “Cave-aged Gruyere maketh a Cubano.”Hann Leon Photo/Getty ImagesFeel free to play around with the mustard.A traditional Cubano includes yellow mustard, but depending on your flavor preferences, blending different mustard styles can result in a tastier sandwich. “Mix together two parts classic yellow mustard with one part Dijon and one part whole-grain mustard for a slightly more complex mustard flavor without straying away from what makes this a Cubano,” recommends Chef Dillon Misonznick of Spicy Boys in Austin, Texas.If you can’t find proper “Cuban bread,” look for bread with high egg content like a briocheIn an ideal world, a Cuban sandwich would always be built on Cuban bread, a version of white bread considered a regional specialty of South Florida. ““You must use real Cuban bread, or it’s not a Cubano! What makes Cuban bread unique is the use of all white flour and lard,” insists restauranteur Joe Santos of Havana 1920 in San Diego.But if you’re unable to find Cuban bread at your local grocery store or bakery, Chef Alfredo Noguiera of Cane & Table and Cure in New Orleans offers a solid alternative: an egg-based bread with a lightweight texture. “Go for a bread that is more of brioche, which is typical for a style [of the Cuban sandwich] called ‘medianoche’,” Noguiera tells The Manual.Thoroughly “lubricate” the bread before pressing.The Cuban sandwich gets its crispy crust and rich melted cheese from a pressing process somewhat akin to the one used for paninis. As with any other grilled sandwich, the bread used for a Cubano must be prepped prior to its placement on the press, an endeavor requiring a fat-based “lubricant.” “Traditionally, margarine is used to toast the bread,” explains Misonznick, “but you can kick it up a notch by mixing some fresh pork lard with the margarine.”Press each slice of bread individually before assembling and pressing the sandwich.The textural contrast of crunchy bread and soft fillings proves a major selling point of the Cubano. In the interest of emphasizing that aspect of the sandwich, Chef Michael C. Brown of Barrel Republic in San Diego puts in some extra time at the press: “I like to press each side of the bread individually, then add the additional ingredients, then press again to get a nicely compressed sandwich.”Chuck Kahn/EyeEm/Getty ImagesLet the sandwich press “do its thing.”Don’t have a sandwich press at home? Luckily, there’s an easy shortcut to getting your Cubano perfectly griddled: “If you don’t have a sandwich press, you can press the sandwiches between two hot cast iron skillets,” suggests chef and butcher Rusty Bowers of Pine Street Market in Atlanta, Georgia.Whether you’re using a traditional press or a MacGyver-ed version, resist the urge to interfere with the process. “Once you have all the good quality ingredients down, it’s all about the press. You want to lightly press the sandwich instead of forcing the press. Place [the Cubano] on the sandwich press and let it do its thing. You don’t need to force it shut; the press will happen naturally,” states Chef Michael Beltran of Chug’s in Miami.If you want to try making a Cubano at home, this recipe provides a clear road map to a traditional and satisfying Cuban sandwich:The Butcher’s Cuban Sandwich Recipe(Created by Rusty Bowers, Pine Street Market, Atlanta, Georgia)Ingredients:2 7-inch bread loaves (Bowers prefers ciabatta)4 slices of mild sharp Cheddar or Swiss cheese6 oz shredded pork6 slices of ham2 oz butter, at room temperatureCucumber pickles, to tasteMustard, to taste (Bowers prefers hot honey mustard)Method:Preheat the sandwich press to medium.Slice the bread lengthwise and spread mustard on the open-cut sides.Place two slices of cheese on each bottom slice of bread. Top with an even layer of pork and ham. Top the meat with pickles and the top half of the bread.Brush each side of the bread with butter. Place the sandwiches in the press and grill until the cheese is melted and the bread browns, approximately 8-10 minutes.Let the sandwiches rest for 2 minutes before serving. The Burger Show’s Alvin Cailan Shares His Burger-Making Secrets Pro Chefs Dish on the Perfect Seven-Layer Dip Recipes How to Care for Your Houseplants in the Winter 12 Reasons South Dakota Deserves Your Attention REI’s Gear Rental Program Will Change How You Experience the Outdoorslast_img read more

Halal Travel In Tochigi Strawberries Ramen And Shopping In Sano City

first_imgWe strongly recommend to anyone traveling in the Tokyo area to go for day trips in the outskirts of the city. Not only is it a great chance to discover places and activities that can’t be experienced in Tokyo, but it is also an opportunity to see the authentic side of living in Japan.One of the cities located close to the capital that is full of charm is Sano in Tochigi Prefecture. Our recommended day trip itinerary to Sano includes a strawberry picking adventure, tasting delicious Sano ramen, and shopping at the Sano Premium Outlets. We recommend this itinerary especially to Muslim travelers because the facilities included in this route can all answer their travel needs. However, it is definitely a route that can be enjoyed by anyone.8:40 – 10:13 — Traveling from Tokyo Station to SanoTraveling to Sano is extremely convenient if you take the highway bus heading to Sano Shintoshi Bus Terminal from the JR Kanto bus terminal located at Tokyo Station Yaesu South Exit. A one-way ticket to Sano costs 1,500 yen and the ride takes about one hour and a half.Before stopping at the Sano Shintoshi Bus Terminal, the bus stops at the Sano Premium Outlets. We suggest getting off here because it’s easier to find a taxi to get you to our first destination: Agritown, a local tourist farm.Agritown is located close to the Sano Premium Outlets and can be reached in less than 15 minutes by foot. However, it might be easier to take a taxi from the Sano Premium Outlets. If there are no taxis stationed in front of the entrance, ask the staff at the Information counter to call a taxi for you. A ride to Agritown takes about 5 minutes and costs around 1,000 yen.10:45 – 11:40 — Strawberry Picking in Agritown Shiroyama Park is the ideal place to feel the seasons of Sano. When we visited, the plum blossoms had just begun to bloom, early heralds of spring. Come here at any time of the year and you’ll be able to see various types of flowers and trees. For example, in March-April the cherry trees go into bloom, while in May-June, visitors come here to enjoy the azaleas. Shiroyama Park View Informationpark13:40 – 14:30 — Halal Ramen for Lunch at NikkokenNikkoken, the dining place we recommend going to at lunchtime, is located very close to the South Exit of Sano Station. From Shiroyama Park, you can reach it in less than 5 minutes by walking through the station. After getting out through the South Exit, go to the right and you’ll reach Nikkoken in less than one minute. There is an expansive souvenir shop inside the building where visitors can find all the popular souvenirs from Sano, including various types of Sano ramen, strawberries and other fruit, snacks, fruit jams and cookies.Postcards with the scenic views of the area, as well as local craft items can also be found here. Of course, there are plenty of goods featuring Sanomaru, the beloved cute character of the city. The charm of the Sano Premium Outlets is that there are plenty of spaces where visitors can rest after a shopping session – either on the benches outside or inside the cafes and the Food Court. Enjoy your time shopping at leisure within this unique outlet. Sano Premium Outlets View Informationshopping_mall16:00 – 16:10 — Sano Shintoshi Bus TerminalThe Sano Shintoshi Bus Terminal is located in front of the entrance to the Sano Premium Outlets, about three minutes away on foot. We suggest heading to the terminal early so that you have enough time to buy your bus ticket back to Tokyo.16:25 – 18:00 — Traveling from Sano to Tokyo StationThe highway bus takes you from Sano directly to Tokyo Station’s Nihonbashi Exit.After a day full of fun, new discoveries, and shopping in Sano, you’ll want to relax in your seat and travel back to Tokyo taking in the evening scenery and recalling the events of the day.Route SummaryTokyo Station Yaesu Exit Bus Terminal → Sano Premium Outlets → Agritown → Sano City Tourist Association → Shiroyama Park → Lunch at Nikkoken → Sano Premium Outlets → Sano Shintoshi Bus Terminal → Tokyo Station Nihonbashi ExitExpensesTransportation: less than 6,000 yenLunch: about 1,000 yenStrawberry picking experience, souvenirs: around 3,000 yenFor more information on exciting travel destinations in Tochigi Prefecture, please refer to the following website: by Tochigi Prefecture Shiroyama Park, located right in front of Sano Station’s North Exit, is located on a hill with a great view over the city.This park used to be the site of Sano Castle that stood here only for a few decades during the Edo period (1603-1868). The current city of Sano was constructed based on the plans of the old castle town. Nikkoken is one of the over 200 dining places in the city specialized in Sano ramen and Sano gyoza. What makes it special is that it also offers Halal ramen and gyoza, which are prepared in a separate area of the kitchen using only ingredients that are Halal certified.The owner thoroughly researched how to cook Halal food, establishing Nikkoken as the to-go ramen place for Muslim visitors to Sano. The messages of thanks left by the satisfied customers on the walls of Nikkoken are proof that he does a great job. Sano Premium Outlets is one of the most popular and expansive outlet malls on the outskirts of Tokyo. Designed in the image of an American town by the ocean, it comprises around 170 shops, featuring international and domestic fashion brands.Needless to say, you can find here fashionable clothes, accessories and interior items at outlet prices.If you show your passport at the Information Center, you can receive the Savings Passport. By using this coupon, you can benefit from discounts at over 100 stores, so you can get a great deal on your shopping. One of the artisan crafts which Sano is famous for is Tenmyo cast-metal items (“Tenmyo imono” in Japanese). From wind-chimes and paperweights to beautiful vases and tea kettles, there’s a wide variety of daily use objects made of cast metal. Besides being practical, they are refined, reflecting the values of traditional craftsmanship.We suggest stopping at this shop for a few minutes to pick up some of the local souvenirs from Sano. There is a corner with pamphlets with information on seasonal events. If there is anything you’d like to find out more about, please ask the staff for details. 佐野市 観光物産会館 View Information12:30 – 12:41 — Traveling to Sano StationTake the local bus from the bus stop in front of the Sano City Tourist Association to go to Sano Station, which is close to our next recommended destination. The ride costs 160 yen.12:50 – 13:30 — Viewing the City from Above in Shiroyama Park Agritown has a shop selling fresh vegetables and fruit, as well as food products such as jam, pickles, and sweets. How about stopping by this shop to look for some souvenirs of your strawberry picking adventure? アグリタウン View Information11:45 – 12:00 — Traveling to Sano City Tourist AssociationTo reach our next recommended destination, the Sano City Tourist Association, we suggest taking a taxi. The Agritown reception staff can call one for you. The ride will take about 8 minutes and cost about 1,500 yen.12:00 – 12:30 — Finding Wonderful Local Souvenirs at the Sano City Tourist Association You can recognize Sano ramen by the crinkled noodles and soy sauce based, simple broth. It comes with various toppings and, according to the locals, it’s a taste one can never get tired of.After tasting it for ourselves, we agree! It’s incredibly light and delicious, with the chicken meat being very soft and tasty. Whether you love ramen or not, we definitely recommend tasting this dish. It will undoubtedly be one of the best Japanese food experiences you’ve had.Apparently, the Halal version of this ramen tastes exactly like the regular dish, showing the owner’s dedication to reproduce the original flavor with Halal ingredients. A bowl of Sano ramen, either Halal or regular, costs 650 yen.The Sano gyoza, also available in the Halal version, are also a must-try. Twice the size of regular gyoza, they are made with chicken meat, vegetables and generously flavored with garlic – in other words, extremely tasty! 日光軒 View Informationcaferestaurant14:38 – 14:58 — Traveling by Bus to Sano Premium Outlets A Fun-Filled Day in Sano City, Tochigi The Sano City Tourist Association is a facility that offers information on sightseeing in Sano. You’ll recognize the building by the city’s mascot character, Sanomaru, which stands right in front of the entrance.Sanomaru is a samurai dog that loves Sano ramen, the local specialty. He’s wearing a ramen bowl on his head and fried potato sticks as his weapons. You won’t be able to resist this little guy. Agritown has two strawberry gardens. Depending on the condition of the strawberries, visitors are guided to the one where the strawberries are large and plentiful.They grow two types of strawberries: Tochiotome, a type that has been highly appreciated for decades now, and Skyberry, a relatively new type, with large fruits that have a refreshing flavor.We picked Tochiotome strawberries, the brand that Tochigi takes so much pride in, and were surprised at how large and sweet they were. The freshly picked strawberries were truly delicious. To reach the last destination of our recommended itinerary, Sano Premium Outlets, take the bus from the bus stop located in front of Sano Station’s South Exit. The buses come regularly but please consult the timetable found at the bus stop.We took the 14:38 bus heading to the Sano Premium Outlets and reached our destination in about 20 minutes. The ride cost only 160 yen.15:00 – 16:00 — Shopping and Fun at Sano Premium Outlets Agritown is a farm growing vegetables and fruit that opened its doors to visitors who want to try strawberry picking (“ichigo-gari” in Japanese). Visitors can drop in on the same day for strawberry picking. However, depending on the ripeness of the strawberries, the number of persons they can accommodate might be limited. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to make a reservation beforehand using the form available online or by telephone.Strawberries can be picked during the cold season, from December to early May. The weather is clear most of the time and the strawberries receive plenty of sunlight, which makes them sweet and flavorful.During the 30-minute strawberry picking session, visitors can eat all the strawberries they want right after picking them themselves. The staff will explain how to spot the most delicious strawberries and how to pick them.last_img read more