Monday, March 18, 2019

Explore a different national treasure during 'National Park Week' April 20-28

Each April, during National Park Week, the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks, celebrates America's treasures.

Time to start planning for National Park Week, April 20-28, 2019. It is the perfect opportunity for a spring family outing to one of the National Parks and Monuments and take advantage of a *free entrance day on Saturday, April 20.

Bandelier National Monument dwellings in New Mexico. (Julianne G. Crane)
The National Park Service invites everyone "to discover American history in all its diversity, from the homes of poets and Presidents to ancient archeological places (such as New Mexico's Bandelier National Monument pictured) to the sobering stories of Civil War soldiers and civilians to the legacy of a courageous woman who refused to give up her seat on a bus. Our history is part of who we were, who we are, and who we will be," according to the NPS web site.

America’s “national parks, wildlife refuges, forests and other public lands offer every citizen a place to get outdoors, learn about our nation’s history and culture, and restore our spirits.” By providing free admission, all Americans can visit and enjoy these extraordinary treasures that belong to all of us.

Three More Free Entrance Days in 2019

•Friday, Aug. 25, National Park Service birthday.
• National Public Lands Day 
 on  Saturday, Sept. 28.
• Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

* “Fee waiver includes: entrance fees, commercial tour fees, and transportation entrance fees. Other fees such as reservation, camping, tours, concession and fees collected by third parties are not included unless stated otherwise.”

The fee-free days provide a great opportunity to visit "a new place or an old favorite," especially one of the national parks that normally charge an entrance fee.  Start Planning Your Visit.

For non-free days, consider America the Beautiful Passes:

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah (Marcel Robicheaux)
While you and your family are visiting a national park or monument, think about picking up one of six available passes.

"A pass is your ticket to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites. Each pass covers entrance fees at national parks and national wildlife refuges as well as standard amenity fees (day use fees) at national forests and grasslands, and at lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers," according to park officials.

Find the nearest national park to you by clicking here.

– Julianne G. Crane
For more on the RV lifestyle, click on  

Photos: Top: RVer Jimmy Smith explores a series of dwellings carved into the rock cliffs of Bandelier National Monument in New Mexico. For information on camping, click here(Julianne G. Crane). Bottom: RVers Julianne G. Crane and Jimmy Smith near Sunset Point in Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah. Click here for camping information. (Marcel Robicheaux).

--Julianne G. Crane 
--To read more about the RV Lifestyle by Julianne G. Crane and Jimmy Smith, go to

Thursday, March 7, 2019

St Patrick's Day Celebrations in Sunbelt

Lexington, Ky., St. Patrick's Parade and Irish Festival

American communities have been celebrating St. Patrick’s Day for more than 280 years. The first St. Pat's parade was recorded in Boston on March 17, 1737.

Today there are hundreds of cities hosting St. Patrick's Day celebrations, here are just three across the Sunbelt where RVing Snowbirds may visit.

- Lexington St. Patrick's Parade and Irish Festival

Friday and Saturday, Mar. 15-16, 2019.

The 40th annual St. Patrick’s festival is Lexington, Kentucky's longest-running citywide civic event. This year's Saturday activities begin at 8 a.m. with the Shamrock Shuffle foot race to benefit Lexington Habitat for Humanity. The festival kicks off at 10:45 a.m. with the annual “Blessing of the Keg." The parade begins at 1 p.m. and goes down Main Street from Midland Avenue to Mill Street.

“From the Irish dancers, to the Scottish pipers, to the Irish music bands from around Kentucky, our
free, family-friendly festival is a great opportunity to see some of Central Kentucky’s best traditional Irish performers,” said Liza Hendley Betz, vice president of the Bluegrass Irish Society and festival chair.

For the full list of internationally-known Irish music groups performing in Lexington, click here

For where to eat in Lexington on St. Patrick's Day, click here.

- 195th Savannah St. Patrick's Day

Saturday, Mar. 16, 2019. 
Savannah's great parade. (
Hundreds of thousands of visitors from around America and other countries come to Savannah for the wearing of the green and celebrating Irish heritage.

The great 195th Parade represents a culmination of weeks of festivities and Savannah Irish heritage functions. Click here for Events

- New Orleans St. Patrick's Day 

Friday-Sunday, Mar. 15 -17, 2019. 

Irish Channel St. Patrick's Day Parade website

It's New Orleans where people love to party and have parades.

You can wear pretty much anything green. Put on leprechaun attire, clovers and green hats to attend any or all of the following city-wide events:

Fri, March 15
Molly's at the Market Irish Parade - 6 p.m.

In the French Quarter, riders in carriages and marching groups. Begins and ends at Molly's 1107 Decatur St.

Sat, March 16
- Parasol's Block Party -10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Music, green beer, food and surprises. The start of the block parties on the day of the Irish Channel Parade.
- Tracy's Block Party 11 a.m. - 'til ???
Lots of green beer, corned beef and cabbage and more fun. This is the party at the end of the Irish Channel Parade.
Irish Channel Parade - 1 p.m.
Hundreds of men in formal attire The organization credits its survival to their deep, strong roots. 

Sun, March 17
Downtown Irish Club Parade - 6 p.m.
St. Patrick's Day Parade on Metairie Rd. - 12 Noon

  - Julianne G. Crane
To read more about the RV Lifestyle by Julianne G. Crane and Jimmy Smith go to