Unique Memorial Day Road Trips

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Memorial Day is a popular time to travel and there’s still plenty of time to plan a holiday weekend road trip. Here are some fun events and activities happening around the country this year:

Indiana

This Memorial Weekend  marks the 100th Running of the Indy 500.  The city of Indianapolis has been planning an epic celebration for over a year and is expecting 300,000 visitors at the event. Highlights include specific family-friendly viewing mounds where families can catch the race, a new indoor karting facility, and the world’s largest milk toast (100,000 people drinking milk with the race winner). Thirty-three artists have been commissioned to create “Welcome Race Fans” signs that will be placed around the city and Motor Speedway is renovating and returning 100 homes to homeless individuals in the city of Indianapolis.

Attractions - IMS Hall of Fame Museum - 003.jpgUtah

May 28 & 29 marks the 24th Annual in Moab Arts Festival & Beer and Wine Garden in picturesque Moab, Utah. This free event draws visitors from around the world along with resident and national artists. Guests enjoy live music, the wine and beer garden, art vendors, and art for kids. The event runs 10am-7pm on Saturday and 10am-6pm on Sunday and is located in Swanny City Park (400 North, 100 West).  national artists welcoming residents and visitors from all parts of the world.

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May 30 is the Memorial Day Carillon Concerts at Bok Tower Gardens just outside of Orlando. This event is a musical salute of gratitude to veterans and current members of our armed forces. Free admission is offered to active, retired and disabled veterans of all military branches with valid ID. Special patriotic carillon concerts take place at 1pm and 3pm. Memorial Day weekend is also the last chance to take in the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival  at Walt Disney Resort. From elaborate gardens and incredible topiaries to helpful seminars and nightly musical entertainment, the festival offers an array of special activities for all green-thumb levels and is included in regular park admission. 

Guests play and make music with favorite Disney characters at Music Garden Melodies in Future World near Test Track during the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. The festival, which runs 90 days March 2-May 30, 2016 at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., features dozens of character topiaries, stunning floral displays, gardening seminars and the Garden Rocks concert series - all included in regular Epcot admission. (Matt Stroshane, photographer)

Credit: Matt Stroshane

Virginia

Plan an unforgettable Memorial Day weekend get-away in Prince William and Manassas, Virginia, just 30 miles from the nation’s capital. Stand where Stonewall Jackson earned his name on the Manassas National Battlefield Park. Home to two major Civil War battles, this 5,000 acre park has walking, driving, hiking and horseback riding trails. Explore one of the quaint small towns and do a little shopping at the artisan shops and farmers markets found there. Alternately, paddle down the Potomac River in a kayak or canoe at Leeslyvania State Park. Then enjoy a picnic and soak up the sun on the half-mile of sand beach overlooking the Potomac River or play a round of golf at Potomac Shores Golf Club.

Historic OccoquanNew York

Wild Walk at The Wild Center is an elevated path that takes visitors up a winding trail of bridges and platforms from ground level to breathtaking treetops creating a pioneering “un-museum” inside New York’s majestic Adirondack Park. Opening in 2016 for its first Memorial Day season, Wild Walk changes the way people experience and interact with nature. An elevated path takes visitors up a winding trail of bridges and platforms from ground level to breathtaking treetops, including a four-story twig tree house and swinging bridges, a human-sized spider’s web hovering 24-feet off the ground, and a spiral walk inside a ‘dead’ tree’s thriving core.

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Washington

Memorial Day weekend kicks off the start of SummerFest activities in downtown Long Beach, Washington. Festival highlights include live music at Veterans Field, street entertainment, and activities for children. The World’s Longest Garage Sale also runs the entire weekend and is a great time to hunt for treasurers; the event draws residents and collectors from throughout the Pacific Northwest. The Long Beach Peninsula has a number of thrift stores, antique malls, and collectables shops.
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New Hampshire

Waterville Valley Resort in Waterville Valley, New Hampshire is celebrating the long weekend with delicious chowder and fishing for the kids. On Saturday, kids can try to catch Corcoran Pond’s elusive Kirby during the annual Casting for Kirby youth fishing derby. The next day, sample chowder from local restaurants at the 27th Annual Chowderfest & Brews festival. Guests submit ballots and vote for their favorites; the winner receives the “Golden Clam Award.” And at 10AM on Monday the 30th, the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center Show will present a free one-hour live animal program on the owls of New Hampshire.

summer_0000_Plan Your TripHappy Trails!


About the Author

Julie Henning
Julie Henning is a freelance writer and journalist based out of Eugene, Oregon. She is a member of the Society of American Travel Writers and owner of the family-travel website RoadTripsForFamilies.com. She is a recent past member of the Midwest Travel Writers Association and the Association for Great Lakes Outdoor Writers. Julie is the Oregon Coast destination specialist for Bindu Media, an itinerary-focused website launching in Spring 2016 and featuring the work of 200+ professional, indie travel writers. Julie has been published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the Wisconsin State Journal, The Daily Journal (Kankakee, Illinois), the Rochester Post Bulletin, Wisconsin Natural Resources (DNR) Magazine, Sustainable Chicago Magazine, Group Tour Magazine, Student Group Tour Magazine, Silent Sports Magazine, Intercom Magazine, Roadtrippers.com, and FTF Geocacher Magazine. Julie has appeared on Wisconsin Public Radio, Ohio Public Radio, and KCBX FM Central Coast Radio and is an affiliate producer with the Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer, a National Public Radio travel podcast. She has blogged for TravelWisconsin.com, Travel Oregon, and VISIT Milwaukee. Julie travels with her three kids and black lab as much as possible and lives by the motto, "Not all who wander are lost." Check out some of her best work at www.juliehenning.com.