Best Easter Egg Hunts

March 31 2010 by Julie Drossos

easter-egg-hunt.jpgIt's that time of year again - time for the Easter Bunny to pay us a visit, or at least plump us up as we use Easter as an excuse to gorge on those addictive little chocolate eggs!

Easter Egg Hunts are an age old tradition that has continued to modern day. Whether you have little ones to entertain or you are just a kid at heart, Easter egg hunts can be a whole lot of fun. If you have the energy and feel like being creative, you can easily coordinate your own Easter egg hunt... but if you're like me, you prefer to just "show up". Here are a few big Easter Egg hunts located around the US.

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Take Good Care of Your Leather

March 30 2010 by Jason Fogelson

leather-biker-jacket.jpgMotorcycles and leather go together like -- well, they go together really well. Leather seats, leather saddlebags, leather jackets, leather pants, leather boots... a lot of cows have given their lives to make your riding accessories. We owe it to those noble animals to take proper care of their hides, and to get the longest possible useful life out of them. Properly maintained leather can last for a lifetime.

Leather maintenance consists of four stages: Cleaning, conditioning, polishing and protecting.

Before we start, a few general statements about leather care. Leather is an organic product, and even though it can be tough and rugged, it is also very easy to damage with chemicals and moisture. Before you jump in with any leather treatment method, test it out on a small, inconspicuous area of your leather. You don't want to discolor your leather, or accidentally change its texture or feel. Be very gentle.

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Business Travel Summit in Toronto

March 29 2010 by Bryson Forbes

business-travel-summit.jpgLast Thursday, March 18th I was fortunate to have moderated an engaging and informative panel discussion on the state of the Canadian business travel. Best Western, the brain child of this event, pulled together marquee expert panellists with a full house of Canadian media including reporters from the Globe & Mail, Toronto Star and Toronto Sun. The travel trade were well-represented with both Travel Press and Travelweek in attendance, as well. The stunning venue, on the 4th floor of the Toronto Board of Trade, allowed everyone to enjoy the day's bright sunshine which was more indicative of May than March.

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Best Western Boutique Blooms in NYC

March 29 2010 by Chris McGinnis

One of my favorite things about blogging for Best Western is the opportunity to watch how its hotels adapt to the constantly changing tastes and needs of its customers.

I was in New York recently for the Best Western Business Travel Summit and stayed at the Best Western President Hotel on West 48th Street, just off Times Square.

You've gotta see this multi-million dollar makeover. Here's a two-minute peek: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cr4X8oansKM

California Redwoods

March 29 2010 by Bridget Daly
Comments (1)

redwood-national-park.jpgYou've seen one tree, you haven't seen them all.

My husband and I decided to do something romantic for Valentine's Day this past year and thought it might be nice to visit the California Coastal Redwood Parks. Located along the Northern coast of California, the Redwood Parks cover a combined area of over 100,000 acres of land and is home to the tallest trees on the planet. In addition to the huge trees are miles and miles of beautiful coastline, streams, mountainous terrain, prairie land and more natural beauty to admire than you can imagine. While most couples were zooming by the Redwood Parks towards Wine Country during Valentine's weekend, we preferred to sit quietly under these massive trees that are seemingly from another planet.

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All About Wheels

March 26 2010 by Jason Fogelson

wheels.jpgI have to warn you in advance -- this article might get a little technical. Don't be afraid, though. I promise to keep it to a minimum.

The subject is motorcycle wheels.

There are several good reasons to think about your wheels. On a purely cosmetic level, the look of your wheels can radically change the stance, appearance and attitude of your ride. Changing the style, diameter and width of your wheels can turn an ordinary-looking bike into a hot rod.

Performance is an important consideration when selecting wheels, as well. Adding some width to your wheels can improve straight-line stability. Choosing narrower wheels can affect turn in and handling. Altering wheel diameter and width can have a dramatic effect on your motorcycle's performance, both for good and for bad. You have to really know what you're doing to ensure proper fit and calibration of your instruments.

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How to Survive a Red Eye Flight

March 25 2010 by Amy Graff
Comments (1)

red-eye-flight.jpgNext week I'll be taking a red eye flight to New York from San Francisco. I'm traveling without my kids so I wanted to spend as little amount of time away from my kids as possible and so the red eye seemed like the best option. But red eyes are brutal, especially when you have to attend an event, which I do, the morning you arrive.

For some advice on how to survive my flight, I pulled some tips from various articles:

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Car Safety Tips: What to Check Before You Hit the Road

March 24 2010 by Claudia Kunkel

family-travel-in-car.jpgIt seems that every day a new recall is hitting the news. It's been a tough couple of years for automakers, but Toyota has been hit particularly hard. Understandably it makes everyone rethink car safety and wonder just how safe the car is that you're driving.

I thought it might be a good time to go over some general car safety tips and who better to give out advice on car safety than AAA. We have been members of AAA for many years and have signed up our three daughters for coverage. It's inexpensive and invaluable when your car breaks down on the freeway, you have a flat tire with no spare or when you're planning a vacation and need some great discounts. Not to mention the peace of mind when your teenagers or young adults are out driving around at all hours!

Here are some great tips and advice from the AAA experts themselves:

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Enter for a Chance to Win a Autographed Hat

March 23 2010 by BW Innsider
Comments (37)

Who's Gonna Win.jpg
Who's gonna win in "M'ville" this Sunday?

Do you think you know? Leave a comment below with your prediction and you might win yourself this great hat signed by Michael Waltrip.

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If you are correct, you will be entered in to a drawing for a chance to win this signed hat.

*Entries must be in before the start of the race on 03/28, and winner will be announced on 03/29.

Don't forget to check back before every race to play Who's Gonna Win!

Follow Us on Twitter I Become a Facebook Fan

Limit only one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all correct answers posted in the comments below.

A Few of My Favorite Mags

March 23 2010 by Jason Fogelson

magazines.jpgI love reading motorcycle magazines almost as much as I love riding a motorcycle. Some years, I discover that I've subscribed to a dozen or more bike magazines at the same time. Then, I cut back, let some expire, and vow to keep my subscriptions more manageable. Lo and behold, a few years later, I'm back up to a dozen again, and I have to do the hard cull. That's where I'm at right now -- evaluating the motorcycle magazines, and trying to decide where to put my money and time.

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My Top 5 Travel Gadgets for 2010

March 21 2010 by Bryson Forbes

travel-technology.jpgThis year's list of my top five travel must-haves is the best one yet. An overarching theme is tough to determine but hopefully there's something for everyone.

  • For the couch potato .who's away from his or her stead, I give you Slingbox This little gem allows you to basically bring your TV on the road with you. All you need is internet access and you can literally watch your TV and your local channels--including the ability to watch and record PVR! They've also recently launched Sling Player for your iPhone! I remember travelling through the U.S. during the NHL playoffs and it was easier to find coverage of the Horseshoe Championship of the World. Could have really used Slingbox!
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Trigger Your Inner Cowboy - Head to Tombstone, Arizona

March 19 2010 by Matthew Clyde

tombstone-arizona-2.jpgThis old western, mining town that almost was placed under martial law until military troops were able to restore order and once had a larger population than San Francisco is now a hidden gem of a tourist spot about an hour drive from Tucson, Arizona. If you need a destination to release your inner cowboy, there is no better spot than Tombstone - the town too tough to die.

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Save Our State Parks

March 18 2010 by Amy Graff

CastleRockSP1.jpgLast weekend my kids touched a banana slug, watched rock climbers scale unusual rock formations, and learned how to identify a redwood tree.

We spent the afternoon hiking at Castle Rock State Park, a woodsy area on the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains, about an hour and a half from our home in San Francisco.

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Tell Us Who's Gonna Win at Bristol for a Chance to Win

March 17 2010 by BW Innsider
Comments (20)

Join us in this weekly giveaway and celebration of NASCAR...

Who's Gonna Win.jpg
This Sunday, Bristol is where it is at! Leave a comment below with your prediction of who's gonna win and you might win yourself this great hat signed my Michael Waltrip.
photo.jpg
The rules are simple:

  • Leave a comment below letting us know which driver you think is going to win

  • If you are correct, you will be automatically entered in to a drawing for a chance to win a signed hat.

    *Entries must be in before the start of the race on 03/21, and winner will be announced on 03/22.

    Don't forget to check back before every race to play Who's Gonna Win!

    Follow Us on Twitter I Become a Facebook Fan

    Limit only one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all correct answers posted in the comments below.

  • Car Care Myths That Won't Die

    March 17 2010 by Chris McGinnis

    buying-fuel.jpgBy now everyone has heard the old adage that you don't save any money on gas by driving on the freeway with the air conditioner off and the windows down. (Having the windows down causes aerodynamic drag, which cancels out the effect of turning off the A/C.)

    Since most readers of this blog do a lot of driving, I thought it might be time to put some other myths to rest.

    First off, something we've probably all done recently due to the recent severe winter weather--the myth that you need to let your car engine warm up when it's cold outside.

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    Counter-intuitive Countersteering

    March 16 2010 by Jason Fogelson
    Comments (1)

    motorcycle-handlebars.jpgSpring is just about here. And motorcycle-riding season is not far behind. Now is a good time to think about your riding skills. One of the most important aspects of riding, and one of the least understood, is countersteering.

    According to David Hough's great book, Proficient Motorcycling , countersteering is "a method of controlling and balancing a bike as it initiates a turn in which the handlebars are momentarily turned in the opposite direction the rider intends to go."

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    World's Worst Weather: Mount Washington

    March 15 2010 by Karla Henriquez
    Comments (1)

    mount-washington-new-hampshire.jpgThe other day, after being out in a freezing cold New England wind, I got curious to know who in the world is worse off than me. So I Googled "world's worst weather." I had to laugh when I saw that a place not far from home claims to have the World's worst weather: Mount Washington in New Hampshire. For many years it held the record for the fastest wind gust ever recorded: 231 mph. (This may be why the observatory at the top is actually chained to the ground.) I was also kind of excited to see that it's a place I've been. The great thing about this peak is that just about anyone can make it to the top. If you haven't been there yet, you really should put it on your list - and when you go, be prepared for any weather!

    Mount Washington is the highest peak in the Northeast. Elevation at the summit is 6,288 feet. Visitors usually go between May and October, which is also when the cog rail operates, weather permitting. The actual mountain is in a state park, which is in turn surrounded by the White Mountain National Forest. The area is easily accessible from the Best Western White Mountain Resort.

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    It's Madness I Tell You, Madness!

    March 13 2010 by Mike Mason

    Basketball.jpg'Tis the season for bracketing. As I write this, we are still a few days away from knowing the final field of 64 college basketball teams that will compete in the NCAA basketball tournament. But there is something in the spring air that is causing many to do their 'googling' best and search for projected brackets online anyway. Even if you don't really follow college basketball, you still feel that general office peer pressure building to get in on the action. I mean, what exactly are you going to do that week to join in the office coffee break conversation if you don't have some commentary to share on WhoKnew State's upset over SureFire University?

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    St. Patrick's Day All About the Beer and Green Stuff? "No, Nay, Never!"

    March 12 2010 by Bridget Daly

    IrishDrummer-wr.jpgAh, St. Patrick's Day...

    Second to Halloween, my favorite holiday - and the one I hold very dear to my heart. Why? The green beer? Yuck! No. The ridiculous green top hats? Um, no. The shamrock bead necklaces? Cool, but no. Celebrating the patron saint of Ireland? Sorry, not really. For me, nothing says St. Paddy's Day like the music.

    Just thinking of March 17, I get excited for the yearly ritual that is sure to come. My Irish relatives and friends (and my friends unfortunately not lucky enough to have ancestors from the Emerald Isle) take a holiday from our careers and map out the day according to where the best music will be, at which Irish pub and at what time. The fun begins around 10:00 a.m. I know what you're thinking. This is an excuse to start drinking in the morning. No. Surprise, surprise...To me, St. Paddy's Day doesn't have much to do with drinking at all. Instead, it's about sitting in an old Irish pub with my loved ones, slamming our glasses on the wooden table, screaming the words to every traditional folk song from the homeland that we've heard over and over and over, but somehow never gets old.

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    Big Cities, Big Savings, Big Fun

    March 12 2010 by Amy Graff

    family-travel.jpgWhy America's cities are great bargains for traveling families.

    Known for their art museums, fancy restaurants, and sophisticated denizens, big cities seem to offer the ingredients for an expensive vacation. But actually, they provide the exact opposite. An urban escape can be an unbelievable bargain, especially for families. Here's why:

    Cheap, yummy food is plentiful. It's easy to spend only $5 to $7 per person on dinner when you can choose from ethnic eateries, street vendors, and hole-in-the-walls. In Boston you can nosh on a sausage from Speed's Famous Hot Dog Wagon in Newmarket Square; in San Francisco and Los Angeles you can track down a taco truck; in Portland look for one of the waffle wagons; and in Philadelphia you can fill up with a cheese steak at Campos Deli or Geno's or Pat's Steaks.

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    Budapest: A Walk Through History

    March 11 2010 by Sam Lowe

    budapest-parliamentary-building.jpgBUDAPEST - The Hungarian cities of Buda and Pest had grown and prospered for centuries along the banks of the fabled Danube River despite wars, invasions and other sorts of turmoil before they united and became Budapest in 1873. But, although they're joined in name, they remain apart in spirit and geography because Buda is still Buda and Pest is still Pest to locals, historians and mapmakers.

    Fortunately, it's a matter of little concern to most who visit here. Pest, Buda or Budapest - it makes no difference what you call it, this is one of the most beautiful cities in all of Europe. And even better for those of us who have reached an age where we prefer to view a city at a leisurely pace, it is easily walkable. And so, this report will concentrate on taking it in one step at a time.

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    The Rites of Spring

    March 10 2010 by Chris McGinnis

    spring-break.jpgEvery year at about this time, the travel industry begins to shake off a long winter's nap. With daffodils and crocuses starting to peak through the slush, it's time for road warriors to prepare for the spring break onslaught.

    Based on a miserably cold and wet winter across the country, I'm thinking pent-up demand and the magnetic force of the sun will combine to make this spring break a big one.

    Here's what business travelers need to know over the next few weeks:

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    Ice Fishing

    March 9 2010 by Claudia Kunkel

    ice-fishing-wr.jpgI do like to fish, really. My parents loved to fish and many a Sunday we'd pack up the fishing pole and find a creek, pond, stream or lake to throw in a line. I didn't particularly care for the cleaning part (too many eyes and guts), but I did enjoy the eating part. Then I married a guy whose passion is fly fishing, so I transitioned from simply trolling for fish to becoming actively engaged in the sport of catch and release. My dad took me ice fishing - once - and I have to say it was a very different experience. I learned you have to be prepared.

    Basics of Ice Fishing

    For those new to the idea of ice fishing, here is a brief summary from Wikipedia:"Ice fishing is the activity of catching fish with lines and fish hooks through an opening in the ice on a frozen body of water. Ice anglers may sit on the stool in the open on a frozen lake, or in a heated cabin on the ice, some with bunks and amenities".

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    Always Book When You Find a Deal

    March 8 2010 by Amy Graff

    virgin-atlantic-plane.jpgMy father was recently diagnosed with high blood pressure. How did he deal with the news? Well, he has changed his diet dramatically but he also decided to take the entire family to London around the holidays. He rented a house near Piccadilly Circus, and now he has put me on booking plane tickets for everyone.

    The No. 1 rule when booking in December is buy early for the best deals. And so about two weeks ago, I couldn't sleep one night and I found myself searching Kayak, Fly.com, Travelocity, and all the popular sites for flights between San Francisco and London.

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    How to Get Tickets to TV Shows

    March 5 2010 by Claudia Kunkel
    Comments (1)

    on-air-wr.jpgDo you ever wonder how all those people get on your favorite television shows? You know, the ones that get picked to be on a game show, provide the laughter for the sitcoms or get to see Leno, Conan, Ellen or Letterman in person?

    I know I did. I'd watch those shows and say to myself - I know I could answer all those questions and win a million dollars or provide a good laugh track for that sitcom or even be in the front row to shake Leno's hand or to dance with Ellen. A few years ago, I knew I was going to be in the Los Angeles area, so I requested tickets for "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" and I was fortunate to be able to get them in the time period that I would be visiting. You do have to arrive early, stand in a long line, go through security and then find a seat - but it was well worth it. It was pretty exciting to be in on the taping and see what goes on behind the scenes. I also tried in vain to get tickets to "The Oprah Winfrey Show", but it was a last minute thought while in Chicago.

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    March Break Ideas on a Budget

    March 4 2010 by Bryson Forbes

    march-calendar-wr.jpgI woke up this morning to an official Olympic hangover. Symptoms included a raspy voice from chanting "Crosby, Crosby..." for hours (his mother's maiden is Forbes, btw..) and, for us on the east side of country, fatigue from lack of sleep. I also can still hear Brian Williams' voice if I try hard enough. Anyway, the hangover will soon pass and only thing left will be the enormous surge of patriotism and pride. Well done, Canada!

    Aside from the hangover, the most troubling part of my morning was the realization that it is March. February was a blur and we're now scrambling to coordinate schedules for March Break, which for us starts at 3 p.m. next Friday the 12th and concludes on Monday the 22nd when life will go back to "normal".

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    Find Your Motorcycle Adventure with the H-D Motorcycle Maps iPhone App

    March 4 2010 by Jason Fogelson

    travel-map-wr.jpgOne of the first tools I reach for when planning a trip is a map. And my map of choice for a motorcycle trip is one from MAD Maps . "MAD" stands for "Motor Adventure Destinations," and MAD Maps is a different kind of map company. Founded by a motorcyclist, the company puts out a variety of state and regional maps that cater to motorcyclists. The maps highlight the best motorcycling roads, the coolest biker destinations and fun, out of the way places that don't always stand out on an "ordinary" map. When you're out riding, the shortest distance between point A and point B is not necessarily the best route. And MAD Maps knows it.

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    Disaster Plan

    March 3 2010 by Chris McGinnis
    Comments (1)

    panic-button-wr.jpgTwo major earthquakes in the Americas in the last two months. Monster storms and flooding in Europe. A series of blizzards in the northeastern U.S. When many of these natural disasters struck, I was glad to be in my hometown.

    But how would I have reacted if I were out on a business trip? Recent events have really made me wonder about this. If disaster struck in a town I was visiting, who or how would I call for help? How would I let my family back home know I was okay?

    On the flipside, what if I'm on a business trip to New York when "the big one" hits my hometown of San Francisco? How would I know if my family was safe? If my house survived? If my pets were okay?

    From now on, I'm going to be better about leaving tracks regarding my whereabouts and be more personally prepared. Here's what I'm doing:

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    Enter for a Chance to Win - Who's Gonna Win the Kobalt Tools 500

    March 2 2010 by BW Innsider
    Comments (48)

    Join us in this weekly giveaway and celebration of NASCAR...

    Who's Gonna Win.jpg
    This week, NASCAR goes to Atlanta! Leave a comment below with your prediction of who's gonna win for a chance to win yourself a die cast car signed my Michael Waltrip.

    The rules are simple:

  • Leave a comment below letting us know which driver you think is going to win the Kobalt Tools 500 this Sunday.

  • If you are correct, you will be automatically entered in to a drawing for a chance to win a signed die cast car.

    *Entries must be in before the start of the race on 03/07, and winner will be announced on 03/08.

    Don't forget to check back before every race to play Who's Gonna Win!
    Follow Us on Twitter I Become a Facebook Fan

    Limit only one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all correct answers posted in the comments below.

  • Share a Cool Travel Destination, Enter for a Chance to Win!

    March 1 2010 by BW Innsider
    Comments (158)

    nuvi275T.jpgTell Us Cool Travel Destinations to Visit by Car and Enter to Win Your Choice of a nuvi® 275T GPS Device ($250 value) or $250 Best Western Travel Card!

    Spring is here (well, almost) and it is time to hit the open road, take in the scenery and sunshine and feel the wind in your hair. While you are doing all that, hopefully you are heading some place fun and exciting. And we want to hear about it.

    Submit a cool destination to visit by car and enter to win a Garmin nuvi® 275T GPS device ($250 value) or $250 Best Western Travel Card!

    To enter your cool car travel destination (and at the same time enter for a chance to win a Garmin nuvi® 275T GPS device or $250 Best Western Travel Card), select the Comment button and enter in a cool destination idea.

    Once you enter a comment you are entered into a random drawing for one commenter to win a Garmin nuvi® 275T GPS device or $250 Best Western Travel Card!

    In addition, get an extra entry into the contest for adding this blog post to another site (track back). Copy and paste the URL under the Trackbacks section to add this post to your blog.

    The contest promotion ends March 31, so submit your travel destinations today.

    The ABC's of a Great Family Hotel Experience, Part 2

    March 1 2010 by Bryson Forbes
    Comments (1)

    A-B-C.jpgThis is the second part of a two part series inspired by a great pop-up book called A is for Animals by David Pelham. This blog takes letters N through Z and matches words that can help families pick the right hotel to meet their needs. Check out Part 1 for A through M.

    N is for nickel. As in nickel and dime...I hate being surprised at check out by a list of items you didn't expect to be paying extra for. I include parking, Internet and local calls on this list.

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