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Information Highway

Now that it is difficult  to  physically visit fun places how about taking a virtual tour. Then when you can travel there, this tour will show you all the best places.You can do that for under $5 now. Here's some fun and informative tours at Tours4Mobile.
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Michelangelo- A Different View

Kathleen Walls

Some of the greatest art in the world is in the Vatican, so when "Michelangelo - A Different View" got sanctioned by The Vatican you know it is special. The exhibit gives visitors an opportunity many people will never have in a lifetime, namely to view famous frescos by Florentine master sculptor/painter, Michelangelo, that  adorn the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Read more.




Renee S. Gordon

Kehinde Wiley, one of America's foremost African American artists, visited an exhibition of his works in the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) and was stricken by the Confederate statues, and what they represent, that line nearby Monument Avenue.  He conceived of a monumental sculpture, Rumours of War, as a response that would enhance the country's story by placing people of color into the narrative and serving as a reminder that our cultural wars have not ended. Since that time the Confederate statues have come down and the “war” has expanded to include political, social and historical issues. The sculpture expresses Richmond's recognition of and commitment to societal change through art. Read more. 


Macon has More

Kathleen Walls

I know there are some places in Macon I haven't visited. However, I was surprised to recently learn of an outstanding event I had not known about before. I guess that's because I was staying at the fantastic 1842 Inn and visiting some of Macon's most interesting places. I must have gotten too busy.Read more.



Kathleen Walls

As some of you know, I recently purchased a 2003 Ford Econoline 250 cargo van from Apex Autoline and have been converting it into a camper van. Her name is Maybelline from one of Rock-and-roll's early Chuck Berry songs about an unfaithful gal named Maybelline, a Cadillac Coupe de Ville, and a hot rod Ford. My van is not a hot rod and I hope she will be faithful. (If you are too young to remember the song, Google it and enjoy. It was a big hit and a fun song.) Read more.


Take a Road Trip

Kathlleen Walls

Ever wonder what it is like to take a real road trip? Imagine a trip where you went from the highest mountain in one state to the deepest cave in another. Get the feel of spending one night in a luxury hotel and the next in a tent in a campground. Add in a little rain—no make that a downpour—one of the camping nights. Here's the scoop on my fun–mostly– road trip. This is just a teaser, there will be stories about many of these places coming soon. Read more.


A Piece of History: Camp Blanding Museum

Kathleen Walls

Sometimes hidden treasures are right in your face. Like many others, I took home county sites for granted. Sure, I live just a few miles from Camp Blanding and can hear the booms of drills often. Camp Blanding began in 1939 as a Florida National Guard training site and remains that today. What I wasn't thinking about was the Camp Blanding Museum telling its history. I can't believe I never visited before. After all, during WWII, this was the fourth largest city in Florida. Wow! What a little gem. Read more.




Georgia's Top (at 4,784 Feet) Tourist Attraction

by Tom Straka

This is a trip for a pandemic, one that minimizes crowds and is mostly out-of-doors. The highest point in any state offers a destination with a view. A day trip from my location offered three choices in North Carolina (highest in eastern United States), South Carolina, and Georgia. Georgia won, as it includes a museum and a view of the Atlanta skyline from 80 miles (on a very clear day, not the day I was there). On regular clear day, four states should be visible. The name of the top attraction is Brasstown Bald. Read more.



Virginia Beach, A Destination for All Seasons 

Renee S. Gordon

On April 26, 1607 three English ships docked in Virginia's Chesapeake Bay and placed a wooden cross on the beach. They named the site of the first landing Cape Henry in honor of Prince Henry of Wales. Approximately 18,000 indigenous Native Americans, the Chesepians, who had inhabited the region for thousands of years, greeted the settlers. Fourteen days later they relocated upstream to the more easily defended Jamestown Island and established the first permanent English settlement. Based on this early history Virginia Beach can lay claim to being the first tourist destination in the country. Read more.



Queen Esther Opens at Lancaster, PA's Sight & Sound Theater 

Renée S. Gordon 

The Book of Esther is the story of a beautiful Jewish girl named Hadassah who becomes the wife of Ahasuerus, the Persian king Xerxes I, and is renamed Esther. Her religious identity is hidden, making her life at court precarious, and inexorably leads to her being called upon to save her people from total annihilation. Read more.

Georgia's Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site

by Tom Straka

Good pandemic travel destinations need to be interesting, generally not crowded, and preferably mostly out-of-doors. Etowah Indian Mounds just off Interstate 75 north of Atlanta near Cartersville, Georgia meets that definition. It includes a small museum with a huge outdoor expanse which was the largest Native American settlement in the Etowah Valley. Still remaining are historic Indian mounds on the north bank of the Etowah River. Read more.


Jackson, Mississippi Civil Rights Trail, Relentless Tenacity 

Renée S. Gordon 

The first recorded European explorer to reach Mississippi was De Soto in 1540. At the time Native Americans had been living there for 12,000-years and three indigenous tribes had the largest presence, the Chickasaw, Choctaw and Natchez. It was Indians who gave the river and the state its name as the “Father of Waters”, “Misi-ziibi". The native inhabitants were displaced through unfair treaties and oppression and in 1719 the French introduced a significant number of slaves into the area. Read more.


Hattiesburg, Mississippi Civil Rights Trail, Relentless Tenacity  

Renée S. Gordon

The U.S. Civil Rights Trail runs through 15 states and the District of Columbia and seeks to interpret the fight for Civil Rights through exploring the cities and sites along the route. Each destination is a testament to the fortitude, resolve and unwavering commitment of those, both black and white, who engaged in the struggle. Guides and maps are available throughout the trail aid in traveler's site selections and understanding of each site's place in the history of the movement, Read more.

Black History is Embedded in Saint Augustine

Kathleen Walls

When it comes to Black History Month, no place figures more in Black history than Saint Augustine.  Walk through almost any section of the city and you will find reminders of its rich Black history. In 1606, 13 years before the first enslaved Africans were brought to the English colony of Jamestown in 1619 an event happened that was little noted but it was of great historical importance in Black history.  The Cathedral Archives in St. Augustine recorded the birth of the first African American child in the continental United States. This free child was the first spark in the fight for civil rights for African Americans.Read more.

The Roswell Incident

Kathleen Walls

Roswell, New Mexico was described as "West of lost and North of nowhere"in the 1993 documentary UFO Secret: The Roswell Crash by New Century Productions.  The documentary of course refers to the July 4, 1947 crash of an alien spaceship which did ­—or did not —happen near Roswell. This was what put Roswell on the map as far as visitors were concerned.  As a teen in the 1960s, I developed an intense interest and have followed possible UFO incidents so when I finally got chance to visit Roswell, New Mexico just months before the pandemic slowed down my travels, I was thrilled. Read more.

Fairfax County, VA, George Washington Walked Here!

Renée S. Gordon 

When the first Europeans arrived the region of Fairfax County in 1608 the land had been inhabited for thousands of years by Indians. The Doeg, the largest tribe in the area, lived in three villages in what is now Fairfax. They farmed and fished. By the end of the 1600s they had either migrated, died of disease or war. Read more

Fairfax County, VA, George Washington Walked Here!  (Part 2)

Renée S. Gordon

One can trace the country's military history through visiting sites and attractions throughout Fairfax County Virginia from the pre-American Revolution Era to modern contemporary times. The region has always been significant, as the site of three Native American villages, a route between the revolutionary northern and southern colonies, a Civil War transit hub and the location of several museums that interpret US military history. Read more.

Lynchburg, Virginia, Where History Speaks!   

Renée S. Gordon 

Travelers appear to see a light at the end of the tunnel and that, coupled with enhanced safety precautions, competitive pricing and flexible reservations make this an opportune time to plan to ease back into the thrill of adventure. It is best to opt for destinations that meet your social distancing comfort level, offer a variety of indoor and outdoor attractions, are affordable and are accessible via safe modes of transportation. Read more. 

Finding Treasures in Daytona Beach
and Volusa County Florida

Renée Gordon

Many Americans are hopeful that shortly our lives will begin to stabilize, we will once again engage in what were ordinary activities, rebuild our economy and reestablish our unifying cultural links and travel has proven to be one of the most effective ways to accomplish all of these goals. Individuals and families can visit destinations that enhance their knowledge of culture and history and provide jobs in industries, hospitality and tourism, which have suffered disproportionately. Read more.  

New York City, Just Breathe 

Renée Gordon 

On December 31, 2019 Covid-19 was reported in Wuhan, China.  Once again the world, and NYC in particular, was plunged into social and economic despair and tourism suffered a huge blow. Now, more than a year later, it appears NYC can once again exhale and plan to welcome visitors again. All sites, attractions, dining venues and accommodations adhere to the Dept. of Health guidelines and NYC is open for business. Read more.

Florida Cracker Lifestyle
at Barberville Pioneer Settlement


There's a special place in West Volusia County where you can time travel. Barberville Pioneer Settlement transports you back to the turn of the century when Florida was the wild frontier. The buildings range from the late 1800s to early 1900s and present a way of life that is all but forgotten now. It's the perfect place to blend education with fun in a safe, mainly-outdoor environment. Read more.

Foxfire Museum and Heritage Center

Tom Straka

Back in 1966 a North Georgia English teacher needed a way to get his students more engaged. He gave them a chance to come up with a project that would make the course more interesting. The result was an idea for a magazine that focused on local (Southern Appalachian) folklore, tradition, and culture. The students could use their own families and the local community as a source of material. Read more.

Visiting William Bartram's River of Lakes

Kathleen Walls

William Bartram came to West Volusia County 255 years ago with his father. He was intrigued enough to return in 1774. He was one of America's first naturalists to visit and write about Florida. His book, Travels Through North And South Carolina, Georgia, East and West Florida, The Cherokee Country, The Extensive Territories of The Muscogulges, or Creek Confederacy, and The Country Of The Chactaws, —They went in for long titles those days—was one of the first naturalists' books published by the fledgling United States in 1791. Read more.

The Art of DeLand

Kathleen Walls

The town of DeLand, Florida began in 1876 when a New York businessman, Henry A. DeLand, visited and fell in love with the area. He remained there and built his home. The city was incorporated in 1882 and named in his honor. It has blossomed into a delightful place to visit. No hustle and bustle, no traffic and no parking problems create a wonderful background for dining, shopping, and relaxing. Since I visited near Halloween, it's only natural to include some ghostly fun spots. Read more.

Car Camping at Palmetto State Park

Kathleen Walls

Car camping is becoming more popular. Many years ago I camped in everything from a station wagon to a stretched tarp between trees to motor homes and every kind of camping in-between. After getting hooked on RVing and Glamping, I thought "no more primitive stuff like car camping for me." I was wrong. On a trip last year, I had a long drive of about thirteen hours between places that were graciously hosting me. Being cheap, I decided to go back to the old ways and do a night of car camping. Read more.

Christiana, PA:
Taking a Stand for Freedom

Renée S. Gordon

An excellent way to gauge the political climate is to examine the laws that are deemed necessary and enacted and the response of the population. In the inexorable march to the Civil War the most impactful law was the 1850 Fugitive Slave Act, strengthening the lax enforcement of the 1793 Fugitive Slave Act. The 1850 law, enacted as part of the 1850 Compromise, was created to facilitate the recapture of those identified as southern slaves. Southerners felt that Northern sentiment was not in their favor and abolitionism was on the rise. Read more.

Frederick County Maryland

Renée S. Gordon

Frederick County Maryland was the site of pivotal events during the founding of the country from its formation in 1748 but it is the Civil War, and allied events, that would indelibly inscribe its place in history. The county is situated on the Mason-Dixon Line, abuts Pennsylvania, and was both an early gateway to the West and later for southern incursions into the North. The Historic National Road, the C&O Canal and the B&O Railroad all passed through and it was the location of Union and Confederate troop movements and Antietam, the Battle of South Mountain, Gettysburg and the Battle of Monocacy.Read more.


Frederick Douglass in Maryland 2

Renée S. Gordon

Maryland's African American history officially dates from 1634. The colonies' initial black population probably came from Virginia but was quickly supplemented by sales directly from Africa, the first “documented” Africans arriving in 1642. More than most states Maryland's stance on slavery was shaped by political events. In 1639 all slaves' were stripped of legal rights and in 1664 the Maryland Assembly deemed the enslaved slaves for life. Read more.  

Athens, The Classic City

Kathleen Walls

This is an excerpt from the latest edition of Georgia's Ghostly Getaways. It is available  at Kindle books. Check out my other books  at my website, KatysWorld
College towns seem to attract haunts. So do historic districts, Athens,
with its eclectic mix of brash young college students and descendants of the legendary antebellum gentry, is a natural habitat of ghostly legends. Read more.

Oconee Station: Defending the South Carolina Frontier

Tom Straka

Upcountry South Carolina is the northwest corner of the state, along the North Carolina border and the Blue Ridge Mountains. It has many historical, natural, and cultural treasures. Many of these attractions can be visited during a pandemic and Oconee Station is one of those. It a South Carolina State Historic Site that includes one of the prettiest waterfalls in the Upstate, Station Cove Falls. Read more.



Finding Florida's Phantoms in Ocala

Kathleen Walls

Just outside the city of Ocala lies a different "Magic Kingdom." Mother Nature rules this kingdom. It's the Ocala National Forest, 430,000 scenic acres of the most diverse terrain imaginable.  It contains highlands, swamps, 600 lakes, countless ponds, 23 streams and springs of clear crystal water, it's bounded by the slow, dark waters of the Oklawaha River on the west and the larger, faster moving St. Johns River on the east. It is the oldest national forest east of the Mississippi and it has its ghostly secrets. Read more.

Haunted T-Frere's
Excerpt from “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana”

By Cheré Dastugue Coen

Some say that the personalities of ghosts in the afterlife are much like the ones they had while living. Amelie Comeaux who haunts T-Frere's Bed and Breakfast in Lafayette was a “canaille,” a mischievous girl, and her antics in death reflect this wily nature.
 Read More

Maryland, Fredrick Douglass in Talbot County

Renée S. Gordon

September is International Underground Railroad Month and nowhere is that history better preserved and presented more accurately than throughout the state of Maryland. This month Maryland is honoring the legacy of the freedom seekers and those who assisted them with a series of exhibitions, events, tours and walking and road trips, all designed to be both comprehensive and follow socially safe guidelines. Read more.

Best Places You Never Heard Of

Kathleen Walls

Being trapped at home courtesy of Corona Virus has me thinking of many lesser known places I visited over my years of travel writing and want to visit again . Each of these places has a unique treasure you won't find anywhere else. Here are just a few of my favorites. You can click on the linked names for more about that place. Read more.

South Carolina Botanical Garden

Tom Straka

There are many interesting historical and natural attraction located just a few miles off the interstate; one is a fantastic botanical garden just ten miles from the exit on Interstate 85, halfway between Atlanta and Charlotte. It is Clemson University's South Carolina Botanical Garden, which is much more than the standard botanical garden. All the traditional plant-focused things are there, but a lot more, like a special natural heritage trail that allows the visitor to transect the natural plant habitats of the state in just a half-mile. Read more.


Norfolk, Virginia: Nauticus and Battleship Wisconsin

Tom Straka

Norfolk is the second largest city in Virginia. Its history has much to do with its location at the mouth of Chesapeake Bay. It has Chesapeake Bay to the north and the Elizabeth River to the west and south, giving it a tremendous amount of waterfront.  All that water also means it has an interesting naval and maritime history. That history is on display at one of the city's best museums: the Nauticus, which includes the Hampton Roads Naval Museum and the Battleship Wisconsin. Read more

Opening Up America amidst Travel's New Normal

Renée S. Gordon 

The U.S. travel industry has emerged as one of the hardest hit industries in the country. Prior to the pandemic travel produced a $2.6-trillion profit and created 15.8-million jobs across the industry. As of the end of April, 8-million jobs have been lost and projections estimate that the total effect of the economic loss will be nine times that of 9/11. Read more


West Baton Rouge Museum

Kathleen Walls

When most people think Louisiana plantations, cotton is what comes to mind. However another crop, sugar cane, was a staple. West Baton Rouge Museum tells the story of Louisiana's sugar cane industry. A trip through the museum and its many historical buildings that make up its campus is a tour through time. It gives a glimpse of life back through the years for 300 years from the Antebellum though the struggle for Civil Rights. Read more.

Sofa Sojourner's Virtual Tours of UNESCO Sites

Renée S. Gordon

UNESCO World Heritage Sites are chosen based on their outstanding value to humanity and at least one of ten additional criteria.  Why sofa sojourns? There are several reasons for traveling from the comfort of your sofa. These visual forays allow us to explore places around the world, reminisce about former trips, learn about new ones and plan for the time when we can all travel again. Read more

Sofa Sojourner's Virtual Tours

Renee Gordon

There was a time, not so long ago, when travel was a luxury for those with time, money and imagination but creative minds and the internet have altered that narrative. Today you can travel from anywhere to interesting places and see sights that once you only heard about. In these times of sheltering in place the ability to access information, virtually visit national and international destinations and in some cases experience them interactively, is priceless. Read more.

Sofa Sojourner's Road Trip:
New Orleans to Houma  (Part two)

Renée S. Gordon

Baton Rouge is uniquely where the past and the present merge and it is filled with sites that clarify and expand what you have previously learned. After French explorers came upon the Baton Rouge area in 1699 the region was thoroughly documented by Pierre Le Moyne D'Iberville's descriptions of what he called Istrouma, Red Stick, in French is Baton Rouge. He saw large red poles, adorned with animal and fish heads, placed by the Houma tribes to delineate their hunting ground. Read more.

Baton Rouge: Born of the Water

Kathleen Walls

Red Stick was what Native Americans called this part of the country. Baton Rouge, as we know it today, is often under-considered as a great tourist destination. It was where  Travel South held this year's conference. Yes, we worked meeting with CVB people from southern states in a speed dating format during two of the days but lunch and evenings were super fun and our first day was spent seeing some of its many attractions. Read more.

Sofa Sojourner's Road Trip: 
New Orleans to Houma   

Renée S. Gordon 

Being an armchair adventurer has its advantages. Travelers have all the time they need to explore a destination's hidden treasures as well as experience the local cuisine and culture. As we embark on part two of our Louisiana adventure we are heading the 57-miles to Terrebonne Parish, the heart of Bayou Country. Louisiana has 64 parishes that are the equivalent of counties in other states. Terrebonne created in 1822, is the second largest parish and is one of the southernmost. Read more.

Whole Lotta History Goin' on

Kathleen Walls

I recently returned from Travel South as the Corona Virus erupted. We're all sitting at home now and friends have asked me what a meet-up like this is like. Here is part one of an overview of Travel South starting with my pre-trip, called "A Whole Lotta History Goin' on." I hope since none of should be on the road now, you can enjoy my trip vicariously. And that you will be inspired to go see some of these fantastic places for yourself when this crisis passes. Read more.

Road Trip: New Orleans to Baton Rouge (Part 1)

Renee S. Gordon

Self-isolation is a term that has recently embedded itself into the public consciousness. People have been asked to refrain from close quarters in large crowds, international travel and nonessential activities. In other words, as much as possible, stay home. Self-isolation has its own set of issues, not the least regarding the impact on destination travel. My solution is to spend some of your newly available time planning for the time when things normalize, and history has proven that it will, and the call of the open road will again beckon. Plan now for a new adventure, to revisit an old one and support the travel industry. Read more.

The Black Dispatch: Spying While Black (Part One)

Renée S. Gordon 

We can all acknowledge the fact that blacks have played a significant role in United States history, from the Spanish explorers, Estevanico, Pedro Nino and Juan Garrido, to advancements by  *Dr. Patricia E. Bath and **Dr. Thomas Mensah. We tend to exalt those whose actions were overt, seemingly larger than life but what about those who operated in the shadows and attained quiet victories. What about those who literally turned the tide of events. Read more. 

The Black Dispatch: Spying While Black (part two) 

Renée S. Gordon

African Americans served as spies during the American Revolution with the belief that their service would prove the loyalty of the people, improve their condition and  for the ever present promises of freedom. Largely the status of African Americans did not change as a result of their service the government did not keep their promises. Read more.

Willie Amps it Up

Kathleen Walls

Two events happened in 1965. Country Willie – His Own Songs became Willie Nelson's first RCA Victor album leading to his success as a singer instead of just a songwriter. The same year, the Saint Augustine Amphitheater was built commemorating Saint Augustine's 400th birthday. Willie and Saint Augustine have another thing in common, being the oldest. Willie is the oldest, male, country star still performing; Saint Augustine is the oldest city in the United States and they are both still in great form. Read more.

Delving into Durham, NC (part one)

Renée S. Gordon 

Cities are, in their own ways, canvasses that depict the history, culture, and dreams of the residents. Stories reflected there are ever changing but the past never really disappears and, if one looks closely enough, one can see traces of earlier times and their ongoing impact.Durham is a classic example of a city with a storied past intertwined with a modern vibrancy. Read more.

Delving into Durham, NC (part two)

Renée S. Gordon

The use of slave labor in NC was, from the outset, a money making proposition. In 1663 eight Lord Proprietors were granted a charter from King Charles II. The Concessions of 1665”,  in which 50 additional acres were assigned to settlers based on the number of enslaved 14 years and older each brought into the colony. The 1669 Colonial Carolina Fundamental Constitution legalized slavery. Read more.

Fort Selden: Where History Overlaps

Kathleen Walls

Off the beaten path places always appeal to me especially if there is a history connection. Las Cruces has many. One is an ancient adobe fort that tells a story of the old west. Read more.

A Landmark Reborn: Centennial Plaza

Kathleen Walls

Little did I know many years ago when I lived in the Mississippi Gulf Coast and was attending college at The Jeff Davis Campus of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, I would get to see an amazing reincarnation  40-plus years later. Read more.

Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum

Kathleen Walls

Oklahoma City is filled with interesting places to visit. There is one that is not a fun quest but no one should pass it by without stopping. The Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum walks you through one of the most horrific acts committed in modern history. Read more.

Montgomery, Alabama (part two) 

Renée S. Gordon

Montgomery, Alabama has, from its beginning, acted as a historical vortex, drawing people and events into its orbit in astonishing configurations. Read more

Montgomery, Alabama (part one).    

Renée S. Gordon

Montgomery, Alabama is widely recognized as both the Cradle of the Confederacy and the Birthplace of Civil Rights.  Read more.

Bayou Rum: The Spirit of Louisiana

Kathleen Walls

David Friedman, author of Food Sanity, gives us one good reason to drink rum. He states, “Also, while too much drinking can damage your brain, moderate consumption of rum may actually lower that risk: Rum has properties that may help protect your brain cells and decrease your risk of dementia and Alzheimer's.” Read more.

PHLASHING Through Philly

Renée S. Gordon 

Whether your latest resolution was to spend more time with your family or not, this column is for you. Philadelphia was designated the nation's first UNESCO World Heritage City in 2015, placing it on par with Berlin, Mexico City, Paris and Quebec City.  Read more. 

Punta Gorda, Florida

Renée S. Gordon

Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León is believed to be the first European to explore Florida although earlier expeditions reached the region hunting for native slaves to export to Spain. He set sail in 1513 on a search for gold and new lands, later stories tell he sought the Fountain of Youth.  Read more.

Baltimore's Ever Present Past 

Renée S. Gordon

The Mid-Atlantic region is the most historic corridor in the country and consists of a series of metropolitan areas within 220-miles and accessed by I-95. The major cities, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, DC, each have distinctive attractions, New York's glitz, glamour and Broadway, Philadelphia's historic sites, art and music scene and DC's museums, memorials and institutions. Read more



Ghost Ranch: Past and Present

Kathleen Walls

As you drive into Ghost Ranch, you are going to be driving slowly. That's because the eye-catching beauty of the mountains surround you. You would not be human if you didn't stop to stare at such overwhelming beauty.  Read more.





Fort Hill and John C. Calhoun

by Tom Straka

There are lots of old plantations and plantation houses scattered across the South. Many are special, usually due to some sort of historical connection. Fort Hill was the antebellum plantation of John C. Calhoun, a preeminent nineteenth century southern statesman and later the home of Thomas G. Clemson, his son-in-law.  Read more.


Luxury at Sea, Regent Seven Seas Navigator

Renée S. Gordon

The Hamburg-America Line launched the Princess Victoria Louise, the first ship built solely for luxury cruising, on June 29, 1900. Prior ships were ocean liners created to transport passengers and cargo on transatlantic journeys as expeditiously as possible but the Victoria Louise was designed to provide a truly luxurious experience with the aura of a floating 5-star hotel. Read more.

Beaumont--Port Arthur where Music Lives

Kathleen Walls

The Beaumont, Port Arthur Metropolitan area in Texas is called the Golden Triangle in reference to the wealth that flowed in after the oil gusher at Spindletop in 1901. It includes other smaller cities such as Orange, Nederland, Groves, Port Neches, Vidor, and Lumberton, and smaller places within the area. It could also be called "Golden" in regard to the number of gold records local musicians have earned.  Read more.

Two Casitas Offer an Old Santa Fe Welcome

Kathleen Walls

Nothing is more welcoming on a cold night than a warm fire flickering in an old fashioned cast iron stove. It's really a gas heater but it looks and feels like a real old fashioned wood one. Naturally, there is back up heat and air conditioning if you visit in summer. When I visited Two Casitas in November, Santa Fe's nighttime temperature dropped to 19%. It didn't bother me at all.  Read more

Touching on Texas and New Mexico

Kathleen Walls

The last few days on the road were a whirlwind of fun. I didn't have time to write about them—until now. It was on to Ghost Ranch and Las Cruces inNew Mexico and then to Beaumont and Port Arthur in Texas. Read more.

A Touch of New Mexico

Kathleen Walls

I'm in Santa Fe now after a fabulous pre trip to Albuquerque. Albuquerque is filled with great food and amazing museums. Our IFWTWA (International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association) Convention was very helpful to improve my career as a travel writer.  Read more.




Alien Touch in Roswell

Kathleen Walls

Say “Roswell, New Mexico” and everyone's first thought is “aliens.” Mine too. That's way I am so thrilled to be here today exploring the unknown. My first stop naturally was the International UFO Museum & Research Center. This is not some hokey museum dealing just with Hollywood's version of aliens from outer space.  Read more.

Treasures in Oklahoma City

Kathleen Walls

Oklahoma City is filled with treasures I discovered yesterday and probably many more I did not have time to visit. My stay began at the historic 21C Museum Hotel. This early 1900s building earned its place on the National Register of Historic Places by being a former Fred Jones Ford Motor Company assembly plant that crafted Model Ts.  Read More.


A Brand New Event: First Southern Cast Iron Cook Off

Kathleen Walls

I'm in Lake Charles and just visited the very first Southern Cast Iron Cook-Off.  Picture Cajun food and culture, music, venders offering samples of and information about everything from alligators to cast iron pots and pans. Professional chefs and amateurs competed in four categories– Meat & Game, Seafood, Sweet & Savory Baking, and Vegetables & Sides.  Read more.




Awesome Lake Charles

Kathleen Walls

I'm in awesome Lake Charles, Louisiana now. It's such a different kind of place. It's not a descendant of the plantation South  or the old West. It's a mish mash of both. It's history is influenced by the fact it was not exactly included in the area of the Louisiana Purchase as it is not land drained by the Mississippi River.  Read more.


The Secret Coast

Kathleen Walls

The Secret Coast won't stay a secret much longer. There is so much going on along Mississippi's Gulf Coast now. The last two days was rainy but I still managed to see a lot more of the coast.  It brought back many memories of the days when I lived in Bay St. Louis.  Read more.

Phase one: Bay St Louis

Story and photos by Kathleen Walls

To paraphrase Willie Nelson, "I'm on the road again." But instead of making music, I'm visiting some fantastic places. Some brand new to me; some I am visiting again and enjoying the old while marveling at the new.  Read more.

Small Town Tales: Short Pump and Ashland, Virginia

Renée S. Gordon

In 1607 a group of 105 people led by John Smith established a permanent Virginia colony, named in honor of Queen Elizabeth I, at Jamestown on land inhabited by Native Americans. A colony, also established by the Virginia Company, was to become Richmond, situated on the fall line of the James River. Read more.

Central Virginia, Appomattox and the Blue Ridge Mountains (part two)

Renée S. Gordon

More Civil War battles were staged in Virginia than any other state and many of those battles played out in and around the 34,000-sq. mile Blue Ridge Mountains' region. The mountains are more than 1 billion years old, wind through eight states and are stunning in their majesty.  Read more.


Ten Haunted Hotels in the South

Halloween is an especially good time to seek out haunted hotels. But these are fun any time of year. Southern hospitality mingled with the spirits of long ago. Read more.



Central Virginia, Lynchburg  

Renée S. Gordon 

Contrary to what some might believe Lynchburg was named after John Lynch who took over the family's James River  ferry service in 1757. In 1786 45-acres of John Lynch's land was used to found the town that was chartered 29-years later. The location of the ferry service was memorialized in 2004 with Langley Fountain spouting a 190-ft. stream of water into the air. Read more.

Cleveland, Living with Legends 

Renée S. Gordon 

In 1669 the French explorer de La Salle, the first European in the Ohio was met by the Iroquois Indians who migrated there in the early 1600s. The river and the state would be named the Iroquois word for “beautiful river”. The land was a bountiful native beaver hunting ground and although the Iroquois were quickly decimated and supplanted by the tribes including the Delaware and Shawnee, the French established posts to trade with the natives.  Read more.

Franklin, Tennessee, Yesterday's Wine

Kathleen Walls

I wonder if Willie Nelson was thinking of Franklin, Tennessee when he wrote "We're agin' with time like yesterday's wine."  Just like a good aged wine, Franklin had a unique past and today is a city that beckons travelers of all types. Read more.




Savannah, Where the Past is Ever Present 

Renée Gordon

Georgia, named in honor of King George II, was the 13th of the 13 colonies and was founded in 1733. When the ship Anne landed the 120 colonists on the shore of the Savannah River, at the foot of a 45-foot bluff, founder James Oglethorpe brought with him the plans for the city with the river as the northern boundary. Read more.

Vingenzo's: A Touch of Italy in Woodstock

Kathleen Walls

Woodstock, Georgia has a huge variety of great restaurants but if you like Italian, Vingenzo's stands out. It is an Italian treasure in Woodstock's downtown entertainment district.  One taste of Vingenzo's Chef Michael Bologna's Neapolitan Pizza or homemade sausage will have you thinking you died and went to—no, not Heaven—Italy.  Read more.


DeKalb County, Georgia: The Presence of the Past

Renée S.  Gordon

The history of DeKalb County has been archeologically traced back as far as the late Ice Age and Indian mounds from the Late Archaic Period have been found that predate the 1567 Spanish claim to the land by thousands of years.  Read more

Experience Saint Lucia

by Renée S. Gordon

Saint Lucia was possibly inhabited 3,000 years ago by the Ciboney and based on archaeological research and artifacts it has been proven that “Iouanalao” island, “land of the iguanas”, was settled by the Arawaks around 2,000 years ago. Read more.



Savannah Eats

Kathleen Walls

You may go to Savannah for the history and fun but you gotta eat. So why not eat at the most fun and interesting restaurants. As icing on the cake many of Savannah's restaurants have a historic background. Here are a few I loved there and why. Read more. 

Always Patsy Cline

Kathleen Walls

She was born Virginia Patterson Hensley on September 8, 1932. In a life filled with much misfortune, she not only survived but became a role model for female singers and women everywhere.  Read more.

Wilmington, Delaware's “Chateau Country” 

Renée S. Gordon

In 1800 Pierre-Samuel du Pont de Nemours and two sons left France to settle in the United States. This voyage would alter the course of American history. Pierre had been elevated to nobility because of his position with Louis XVI as an economist, secretary to the Assembly of Notables and his assistance in crafting the 1783 Treaty of Versailles that ended the American Revolution. Read more.

Tribute to Lum York

Kathleen Walls

On the 50th Anniversary of Hank Williams death, I had the honor to meet the man who slapped his bull fiddle for Hank's Drifting Cowboys in the 1940s.William Herbert "Lum" York, (November 16, 1918 – August 15, 2004) was a musician best known as the bass player in Hank Williams Drifting Cowboys. Read more.



Wonderful Woodstock

Kathleen Walls

Who knew there is so much to see and do in Woodstock, Georgia?  Just visited it with Travel Media Showcase this year and discovered a treasure. It began with the Georgia Gold Rush and grew when Marietta and North Georgia Railroad built a depot there in 1879. There are a couple of legends about the city's name. Read more.

Wilmington's Harriett Tubman Underground Railroad Byway 

Renee S. Gordon

On Monday, September 17, 1849 Araminta “Minty” Ross set out from Poplar Neck Plantation, on Maryland's Eastern Shore, to freedom in the North. Prior to her escape she changed her name to Harriet, after her mother, and took her husband's last name.   Read more.

DeKalb County's Terrific Trio

Kathleen Walls

Did you know DeKalb County, Georgia has a trio of unusual and fascinating museums? I didn't until I recently visited during Travel Media Showcase. Read more.

Maryland's National Harbor: America's Backyard

Renee S. Gordon

The first Europeans in the southern region of Maryland, today's 10-mile long South Potomac Heritage Scenic Corridor portion*, were met by the Piscataway Indians who lived there from 1300. Regional native habitation dates back 13,000 years and was the site of a thriving culture. Read more

Stone Mountain: Above it All

Kathleen Walls

Stone Mountain, a huge granite monolith towering over the landscape in DeKalb County, Georgia, is eye-candy in the highest form.  Its Confederate heroes, carved in giant scale on its front, is carving is breathtaking. It's the world's largest bas-relief carving in North America on the largest granite outcropping.  Read more.

Savannah for the Broke and Cheap

Kathleen Walls

If you've been putting off visiting Savannah because you think it's expensive, think again. It can be costly especially parking but there are many free attractions well worth a visit. I just visited and had a wonderful time. Read more.


Elatse'Yi: Camping Without the Headaches

Kathleen Walls

In the not too distant past, if you wanted to get close to nature you needed to pack your camping supplies or hitch up your RV. I just did a magnificent close to nature trip with neither of those things. How? I went glamping in Ellijay in the North Georgia Mountains. Read more.

Southern Hospitality at its Peak,
NashHouse Southern Spoon & Saloon

Kathleen Walls

NashHouse Southern Spoon & Saloon in Nashville, Tennessee is more than a dining establishment. It's a tribute to Nashville's Country Music icons. It's relatively new having opened in March 2018 and is booming. Location of course is important. It's in the Cambria Nashville hotel putting it walking distance from the Country Music Hall of Fame, Music City Center, and the Johnny Cash/Patsy Cline Museums. Read more.




North Carolina Transportation Museum
Planes, Trains and Automobiles, and Some Boats

Tom and Pat Straka

This is one of the gems which is hidden right off a major interstate. It's for transportation buffs, especially railroad buffs. In the late nineteenth century, J.P. Morgan, owner of what was once the Southern Railway Company, located its largest steam locomotive servicing facility halfway between the railroad's major terminal points of Washington, D.C. and Atlanta. Read more.

R and A Orchards: Country Fresh

Kathleen Walls

If an apple a day really keeps the doctor away, R and A Orchards in Gilmer County, Georgia can keep you in perfect health. In this era of not knowing where our food comes from, it's a pleasure to visit a real family run orchard and produce store.  Read more.

Henry County, GA from Reel to Real (Part Two)

Renée S. Gordon

Hampton, located 26-miles south of Atlanta, has a population of less than 10,000 but receives thousands of visitors annually drawn by the city's unique sites and attractions. Seven years ago Hampton was deemed a “Playful City,” one of under 220 in the country.  Read more.

Build an Ark

Kathleen Walls

There are many fun things to visit in Ellijay, Georgia but there is one unusual place many people might miss. If you are an animal lover this one is a must-see. It's Build an Ark Animal Rescue.  Read more.


Westville:  The 1800s Return

Kathleen Walls

Long awaited Westville, a living history recreation of a typical Georgia town in the 1800s is now alive and in full swing again in Columbus, Georgia. Its authentic homes and building have been moved from around the state. It had begun in Lumpkin and was closed down for a good while to complete the move.  Read more.


The Lone Writer Rides the Range

Kathleen Walls

"Return with me now to those thrilling days of yesteryear when the Lone Ranger rides again"--no make that the Lone Writer. Here at French Broad Outpost Dude Ranch in Eastern Tennessee, I'm getting as close to the old western days as you can get. I followed a gravel road that is not on most maps to the ranch.  Read  more.


“The Impressionist's Eye”
An important art exhibition in Philadelphia

By Eleanor Hendricks McDaniel

I recently visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art to view an exhibition of their extraordinary collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artworks. More than 80 important pieces by the masters of those avant-garde movements can be seen in the media of painting, sculpture and works on paper. Read more.

Legacy of The Man in Black: Johnny Cash Museum

Kathleen Walls

One of the greatest musicians of our time is memorialized in a museum in downtown Nashville. Only a handful of musicians have left as large a footprint on Country Music as Johnny Cash. The Johnny Cash Museum is rated number one music museum in the world and a must-see by Forbes, Conde'  Naste, and National Geographical Traveler. Read more.

Reel to Real in Henry County, GA (part one)

Henry County, Georgia, comprised of four major communities, Hampton, Locust Grove, McDonough, and Stockbridge, is situated 20-miles from downtown Atlanta. It was named in honor of Patrick Henry upon its creation in 1821 on land obtained through a treaty with the Creek Indians.  Read more.    

Cross Hazzard County with Mayberry and you get Leiper's Fork

by Kathleen Walls

Leiper's Fork, Tennessee is one of the prettiest little towns you can find. It's no coincidence that as you drive into town, a bright orange car and a police cruiser catch your eye. It's the General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard and Barney Fife's cruiser from the Andy Griffin Show Read more

Getting Catty at Jacksonville Zoo

Kathleen Walls

There are some places in Jacksonville a visitor should not miss. One of them is Jacksonville Zoo and Botanical Gardens. It's on the north side of Jacksonville and not in the main path of visitors headed into Jax's busy downtown.  It began back in 1914 and has grown ever since.  Read More.

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The Tenant from Hell

Book 1 in the Realtor Mystery Series
Casey Clark, property manager, is just trying to evict a bad tenant. Instead she is over her head in murder and mayhem
Double Duplicity

Book 2 in the Realtor Mystery Series
Trouble  follows Casey like a raging fire.
Missing-- Gone but not Forgotten

Based on the unsolved  abduction of a little girl in a rural Florida community
Under a Bloody Flag

Kansas and Missouri were a "no man's land" in the days before the War between the States. 

 Under a Black Flag

Kansas and Missouri heated to the boiling point during the War between the States

For Want of a Ship

John Roy came to New Orleans looking  for peace instead he found a war.
Last Step
Last Step will keep you on the edge of your seat and leave you gasping in surprise at the ending

Kudzu shows you a different part of the South, past and present. Mystery with a touch of romance and a smidgen of paranormal.
Wild about Florida: South FL

The Everglades swarm with wildlife from birds,  to mammals, to reptiles. Take a boat ride into the surrounding waters of the Atlantic or Gulf of Mexico, you will find dolphins dancing in your wake.
Wild about Florida: Central FL
Central Florida has the ocean and gulf beaches much like other parts of Florida but in many other ways it is distinct and unique. The Florida scrub jay, a bird many Floridians believe should be our state bird, is found nowhere else in the world .
Wild About Florida: North FL
Come explore caves, hills, whitewater falls and lots of other fun things you didn't expect to find in Florida. North Florida still lets you enjoy the sun and sand of Gulf and ocean beaches,  but there is so much more. The northern counties are different from their southern and central counterparts.
Georgia's Ghostly Getaways  
Who is not fascinated by mysterious things that go bump in the night? Who has never wondered about that thin line that separates the living from the dead? Are there some places where departed souls still linger?
Hosts With Ghosts
The South has long been famous for its Southern Hospitality. Hotels throughout Dixie vie with one another to offer their guests more service and more amenities. They strive to make each visitor feel like a cherished family member instead of a paying customer. Many have guests that never depart.
Finding Florida's Phantoms
Florida! The land of sunshine and wide-open beaches. But even the Sunshine State has its dark secrets. Places where centuries old spirits remain tied to earth. Beneath the facade of fun and make believe lurks the real Florida.
Color Saint Augustine
This is a way to virtually visit Saint Augustine. It's a coloring book for grown ups (but kids will love it too.) It's a spiral bound, letter size (8.5" x 11") book with an actual photo taken by me of one of the attractions in Saint Augustine. The opposite page is the same photo converted into a black and white line image for you to to color. It's 64 pages with 30 photos and 30 pages for you to color. On each photo and each color page there is a little about the story of the image .