TVL BRIEFS FOOTBALL WEEKENDS
The best places for a college football weekend, from Sports Illustrated on Campus:
1. Tennessee (Knoxville)
2. Louisiana State (Baton Rouge)
3. Texas A&M; (College Station)
4. Florida (Gainesville)
5. Notre Dame (South Bend, Ind.)
6. Oklahoma (Norman)
7. Alabama (Tuscaloosa)
8. Georgia (Athens)
9. Wisconsin (Madison)
10. West Virginia (Morgantown)
BOISE, Idaho -- Ski resorts around Idaho are getting ready for a new season and some fresh competition this year.
Tamarack Resort is tentatively set to open Dec. 15 with five lifts, including two high-speed quads.
It will be the state's first new all-season resort to open in more than 20 years, said Carl Wilgus, administrator of the Idaho Tourism Division.
Lift prices around the state are generally the same or only slightly higher than previous years.
Sun Valley, the state's premier ski resort in central Idaho, set its all-day lift ticket price at $67 for the 2004-2005 season.
Sun Valley adult season passes will be sold this year for $1,850 each, a $25 increase from the 2003-2004 season-pass price. However, if purchased before Oct. 17, the passes will be sold at a $100 discount, for $1,750 each.
The Tamarack Resort, about 100 miles north of Boise, set its daily lift price at $55.
Tamarack spokeswoman Jessica Flynn said the new resort will have three restaurants, ski rentals and lockers in large tent-like shelters.
She said skiers and snowboarders will be able to find lots of room to maneuver through 700 skiable acres that includes 25 ski runs, a super pipe and a terrain park. They are expecting about 1,500 skiers per day.
"We're hoping to maintain the experience of not being on a super-crowded mountain," Flynn said.
NEW YORK -- Golf and a spa have become de rigueur elements of the resort experience. But what about golf for kids, or a spa for teens, in a setting where their parents can also kick back and feel pampered?
Travel + Leisure Family magazine asked readers to name their favorite family-friendly hotels, and the top 50 places appear in the fall-winter issue. "Hotels and resorts are catering to families in ways never before seen in this segment of travel," said Margot Guralnick, the magazine's editor in chief. She added that resort activities for kids are increasingly sophisticated, ranging from cooking and scuba diving to etiquette classes.
The magazine's readers chose The Cloister, on Sea Island, Ga., and Fairmont Le Chateau Montebello, in Quebec, as the top two family resorts in the continental U.S. and Canada. Disney properties took the next five spots on the list: Wilderness Lodge, Animal Kingdom Lodge and Yacht Club Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., followed by the Grand Californian Hotel in Anaheim, and the Boardwalk Resort in Lake Buena Vista. Finishing up the 10 best were Sundance in Provo, Utah; Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando in Florida, and Canada's Westin Resort &; Spa in Whistler, British Columbia.
The top resort in Mexico was the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, while the winner in Hawaii was the Four Seasons Hualalai in Kaupulehu-Kona. Caribbean bests were the Casa de Campo in La Romana, the Dominican Republic; Atlantis on Paradise Island in the Bahamas; the Aruba Marriott Resort; The Reefs in Southampton, Bermuda; and the Four Seasons Resort in Nevis.
RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia is for ghosts.
But you don't have to believe in them to take a ghost tour.
Walks and talks associated with long-dead soldiers, spurned lovers and other restless souls include tours of Leesburg, Williamsburg, Yorktown, Old Town Alexandria and Lexington, while hotels that claim paranormal activity (beyond ice machines that go bump in the night) include the Martha Washington Inn in Abingdon and the Hewick B&B; plantation in Urbanna.
Taverns boasting spirits both potable and ethereal include Gadsby's in Alexandria and the Cork Street Tavern in Winchester.
For details, visit www.virginia.org or call (800) 932-5827.
DENVER -- Called a "living hourglass" by Secretary of the Interior Gale A. Norton, Colorado's tall and fragile Great Sand Dunes have been designated the nation's newest national park.
Located in the San Luis Valley near the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is home to more than 30 square miles of sand dunes, many more than 750 feet tall. The park also features alpine lakes, ancient evergreen forests and six peaks more than 13,000 feet tall.
Deer, elk, foxes, coyotes, mountain lions and bighorn sheep populate the area; Baca National Wildlife Refuge is adjacent to the dunes.
Other federally protected forests, mountains, canyons, fossils and archaeological sites around Colorado include the Rio Grande National Forest, Dinosaur National Monument, Rocky Mountain National Park, Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park and Mesa Verde National Park.
For more information about national parks and preserves in Colorado, visit www.nps.gov. For help in planning a trip to the state, go to www.colorado.com or call (800) COLORADO for a free state vacation guide.