PUT ON YOUR DANCING SHOES AND HEAD TO THE DIRTY DANCING FESTIVAL IN LAKE LURE, NC

Dirty Dancing Festival at Lake Lure, NC

Lake Lure, located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, is a great destination any time of year, but it’s especially fun to visit during the Annual Dirty Dancing Festival which will be held August 24th—25th of this year. I attended last year’s 8th Annual Dirty Dancing Festival which marked the 30th anniversary of the movie and definitely “had the time of my life”!

To read more about the Festival and what to do while visiting Lake Lure, check out my article at: TraveltheSouthBloggers.

 

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Toy Story Land to Open June 30th at WDW

Toy Story World at Walt Disney World
Toys are taking over Walt Disney World!  Starting this Saturday, June 30, guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will be able to experience a joy-filled, toy-filled world as only Disney can create.
The new Toy Story Land, inspired by Pixar Animation Studios’ Toy Story films, invites guests of all ages to be “honorary toys” and immerse themselves in the whimsical world of a child’s imagination – just like in the popular films.
Woody, Jessie, Buzz Lightyear, Slinky Dog, the Aliens, Green Army Men and other fun-loving Toy Story characters come to life in Andy’s awesome backyard.
The land offers the best playtime ever. Guests will hop on Slinky Dog Dash for a family-friendly roller coaster ride, take a spin on Alien Swirling Saucers and go for the high score playing midway games on Toy Story Mania!
The new land is the largest expansion in Disney’s Hollywood Studios 29-year history.
(Content and photos courtesy of WDWNews)

Hendersonville’s Unexpected Food Finds

From cricket tacos to fried chicken, handmade donuts and award-winning desserts, this small North Carolina mountain town is a foodie destination just waiting to be discovered.

Check out the story that was published in Allegiant’s in-flight magazine. Hendersonville’s Unexpected Food Finds.copy

Fun restaurant finds in Hendersonville, NC

Cricket Tacos are a hit at NeverBlue

Asheville, NC: Discover Small Town Flavor with a Mix of Sophistication

Asheville, NC, skyline

With the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains as a backdrop, the town of Asheville has morphed into more than just a destination for outdoor enthusiasts. This small mountain town, known as the “Paris of the South,” is a hotspot for farm-to-table restaurants, lively music, arts and crafts, upscale shopping and a wide variety of seasonal festivals.

Click here to read full article. 

25th International Flower & Garden Festival

Belle & Beast topiary is one of more than 100 festive topiaries featuring favorite Disney characters.

 

Richly hued flowers and floating gardens adorn the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.

Spring is a great time to visit Walt Disney World and especially Epcot during its annual 90-day International Flower & Garden Festival. Be prepared to be wowed by millions of brilliant blossoms, more than 100 festive topiaries featuring favorite Disney characters, 220 mini-floating gardens and Disney-crafted “flower towers.” During this event from February 28th to May 28th, guests will also enjoy cuisine from 15 outdoor kitchens and top-notch musical acts.

Check my entire article in Allegiant Airline’s in-flight magazine, Sunseeker:  Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival 2018 copy

 

This Winter Head To A Different Beech

Blue Ridge Mountain ski resort--Beech Mountain Resort

Beech Mountain Resort in the Blue Ridge Mountains of NC

Are you psyched for the Winter Olympics? Want to try out some of those half-pipe tricks or finesse your figure skating jumps?

We’re lucky in North Carolina–we have both a beautiful coastline with sandy beaches and gorgeous sunsets, but also stunning mountains with waterfalls, autumn leaves and snow, providing lots of opportunity for all types of sports.

Check out my article for Allegiant’s in-flight magazine, Sunseeker, to read about Beech Mountain Ski Resort, a fantastic winter resort in the Blue Ridge Mountains where you can ski, snowboard, go snow tubing, ice skating and sledding. Then after a day on the slopes enjoy some craft beer and great food at one of the few breweries owned and operated by a ski area.

 

Pandora–The World of Avatar at Walt Disney World

 

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I just returned from a media trip to Walt Disney World for the grand opening of Pandora–The World of Avatar. This 12-acre addition to Walt Disney’s World’s Animal Kingdom is the fulfillment of a multi-year project by both Disney and the film’s creator James Cameron.

 

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Cameron and the main cast from the movie were on hand for the dedication prior to its opening to the public on May 27th. This amazing, colorful bioluminescent land with floating trees and waterfalls also offers two new rides:  Na’vi River Journey and the most realistic 3D ride I’ve ever been on–Avatar Flight of Passage (where you get to fly on the back of a banshee.)

Don’t miss Windtraders, a shop where  you can find Na’vi cultural items, toys, science kits and more. The Satu’li Canteen is a great casual restaurant with great food, a bioluminescent frozen cocktail and indigenous beers.

When visiting Animal Kingdom after dark (which I highly recommend) be sure to see the Tree of Life with its animated imagery, the Rivers of Light show, sunset safaris and live-entertainment street parties.

 

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If you plan on visiting Walt Disney World this summer, a great place to stay close to all the action is Animal Kingdom Lodge where you can view animals such as giraffes and zebras right from your room’s balcony!

© Sandra Chambers

Photos by Sandra Chambers