Unique Local Foods, Spirits And Craft Beers Abound In California’s Central Coast
Enjoy January In San Luis Obispo County, The Most Delicious Month Of The Year
San Luis Obispo County, located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco on California’s breathtaking Central Coast, is a culinary paradise offering an assortment of locally-sourced and produced food and drink. The area’s range of coastal and inland influences is demonstrated by its broad assortment of gastronomic treats ranging from fresh foods, innovative spirits, unique craft beers and much more.
Indulge in and explore the culinary bounty San Luis Obispo County has to offer during Restaurant Month, January 4-29, 2016*. Once a year, participating restaurants offer special prix-fixe menus of three courses at$30-$40 per person. Whether taking in San Luis Obispo County’s flavors during Restaurant Month, or visiting some of the area’s producers throughout the year, the destination is overflowing with an abundance of great products found only on the Central Coast.
(*Days of offerings vary per restaurant and are noted here. See details below per restaurant. Split meals not allowed. Please call individual restaurants for open hours and additional information.)
Locally Sourced Foods Flourish in San Luis Obispo County
There are a wide variety of new and interesting farms and fisheries across San Luis Obispo County that specialize in unique foods including shellfish, meat, produce and dairy products supplying local restaurants and markets. Taste the fresh farm fare from the producers below at one of San Luis Obispo County’s restaurants or farmer’s markets:
Morro Bay Oyster Company: Morro Bay holds a long-standing history as a thriving seaport with beautiful ocean views and a tranquil yet productive estuary. Morro Bay Oyster Company harvests Pacific Gold Oysters by hand directly from the pristine water, which are then sold to local restaurants and to the public at farmers markets and off its barge in Morro Bay harbor.
The Abalone Farm: The largest aquaculture facility of its kind in the country, The Abalone Farm Inc. produces over 100 tons of California Red Abalone each year. The facility is not open to the public, but its products are available through several distributors.
Adelaida Springs Ranch: Savory and sustainable grass-fed beef and lamb, are the specialties of Adelaida Springs Ranch, where tours offer fascinating information about the area, from the geography and its history to the workings of the ranch.
Rinconada Dairy: Cheesemaking at this Santa Margarita dairy evolved from 25 years of organic gardening and a passion for producing healthful and delicious food. Every step in the process of breeding, lambing, feeding, milking and cheesemaking is hands-on.
Stepladder Ranch: This family-owned ranch in Cambria features Hass avocados, sub-tropical fruits, forest-raised pork, fresh goat cheese and a luxury vacation rental.
Windrose Farm: Located east of Paso Robles, Windrose Farm cultivates vegetable rotations including tomatoes, potatoes, onions, garlic, green and dry beans, and much more. The farm also has a sheep pasture and offers tours and special tastings in partnership with FARMstead Ed.
San Luis Obispo County is also home to dozens of craft olive and walnut oil producers including Pasolivo, Olea Farm, Kiler Ridge Olive Oil, and Limerock Orchards, just to name a few. Sample these and other unparalleled offerings at over a dozen farmer’s markets throughout the week.
Distilling Movement Growing in San Luis Obispo County
To rival it’s evolving foodie trends, the craft spirit industry in San Luis Obispo County has grown rapidly over the last several years. The movement is a terrific complement to an area known for producing world-class wines and there are a variety of distilleries in the region that offer tours and tastings.
Pendray’s Distillery: Having a distillery was always part of the business plan for PasoPort winery and in 2013, winemaker Steve Glossner began production of brandy for fortification of its ports, and has since expanded to brandy and grappa.
Re:Find: The first to utilize premium Paso Robles-grown grapes as their base, Alex and Monica Villicanaoperate Re:Find out of the Villicana winery, making limoncello, gin, vodka and whiskey.
Wine Shine: Co-owners Mark Sahaydak and Patrick Brooks operate this small still house specializing in flavored moonshines, brandies and whiskey.
Discover Craft Beers (and Cider)
There’s no shortage of craft breweries in San Luis Obispo County, producing a wide variety of beers including IPAs, porters, sours, and just about any other style you could imagine. Drop by any of the following craft breweries to raise a glass and sample some of their creations. Continue reading
Selected from more than 13,000 entries, a photo of a tornado in Colorado was chosen as the grand-prize winner of the 2015 National Geographic Photo Contest. The photo, titled “DIRT,” was shot by James Smart of Melbourne, Australia. He has won $10,000 (USD) and a trip to National Geographic headquarters in Washington, D.C., to participate in the annual National Geographic Photography Seminar in January 2016.
Last spring, Smart spent 15 days chasing storms with his brother and some friends who are meteorologists. On the last day, Smart ended up outside of Simla, Colorado, where he shot the winning photo.
“The tornado was slowly getting bigger as it picked up the dust and soil from the ground on the farmland,” Smart said. “It wasn’t moving very fast, so we kept getting closer as it tracked next to the home as you can see in the image. Driving down a Colorado dirt road, we were lucky enough to be on the west of the tornado, so it was front lit. This really helped to get great detail out of the image and the perfect light for the sky and foreground.”
Joel Nsadha of Binghamton, New York, placed first in the People category for a portrait of a young man on his cherished bicycle in a slum in Uganda, and Francisco Mingorance of Andalusia, Spain, won in the Places category for his photo of a marsh in Spain that has been partially destroyed by radioactive waste. Smart’s photo won in the Nature category and will be published in National Geographic magazine.
The judges for the contest were National Geographic magazine Senior Photo Editor Jessie Wender, National Geographic Photography Fellow David Guttenfelder and photographer Anand Varma. Judging consisted of multiple rounds of evaluation based on creativity, photography quality and genuineness/authenticity of the content. Contestants submitted photographs in three categories — People, Places and Nature — through National Geographic’s photography community, Your Shot. All of the winning photos, along with the honorable mentions, may be viewed at natgeo.com/photocontest.
Fans Can Enter Twice A Day For A Chance To Win First Ever Dream Remodel Located On Merritt Island, Florida
Starting today and continuing through 5 p.m. ET Thursday, February 18, 2016, viewers can start dreaming about moving into the HGTV® Dream Home Giveaway on Merritt Island, Florida. Fans can enter twice a day by visiting hgtv.com/hgtvdreamhome for their chance to win the grand prize package valued at more than $1.5 million. New this year, fans will enjoy one bonus entry into the giveaway via www.realtor.com®. Eligible U.S. residents can log on to www.hgtv.com for full details and the official rules.
In addition to the approximately 3,150-square-foot residence and all its furnishings, the grand prize package includes the keys to a 2016 GMC Acadia Denali® and a beautiful new boat, as well as $250,000 from national mortgage lender Quicken Loans®.
Over the summer, architects, contractors and designers have been busy with an incredible home transformation on the sunny coast of Florida to bring fans the first ever HGTV® Dream Home Giveaway renovation. The waterfront property is shaded by giant royal palm trees and situated on the Indian River Lagoon with Intracoastal Waterway access. The updated, transitional take on Floridian style offers casual elegance with a clever play on classic coastal. The light and bright paradise is built for entertaining and relaxing by the water, complete with a private pool and a three-car garage. With three bedrooms and five bathrooms, the home’s decor blends the sophistication of the Hamptons with punches of tropical vibrancy.
“Deciding to remodel an existing home for our 20th HGTV Dream Home Giveaway provided a challenge, knowing the expectations our viewers have for these homes,” said Ron Feinbaum, General Manager and SVP of Home Promotions for Scripps Networks Interactive. “Working with interior designer Brian Patrick Flynn, architect Michael Stauffer and builder Steven Price of Steven W. Price Construction, we were able to transform this existing home into a dream residence with ideas and trends that our fans can use in their own homes.”
From a stunning coastline of endless sandy beaches to beautiful sunrises and sunsets, the HGTV Dream Home 2016 location is as spectacular as the first 19 HGTV Dream Homes. Learn more about this year’s giveaway and its sponsors – General Motors LLC, Lumber Liquidators Inc., GLIDDEN® paint brand, Quicken Loans Inc., Bush Brothers & Company, Cabinets To Go, Delta Faucet, JELD-WEN Windows & Doors, Mars Petcare, Trex Company Inc., Belgard, Ethan Allen Global Inc., realtor.com® and Bose Corporation – at hgtv.com/hgtvdreamhome.
Toshiba Corp. will liven up the annual global countdown event as the official sponsor for the Times Square New Year’s Eve celebration. The iconic 60-second countdown to midnight will be enhanced by audio and pyrotechnic effects on the TOSHIBA VISION screen, located directly below the world famous Times Square New Year’s Eve Ball.
For this year’s New Year countdown, from 6 p.m. to 12:15 a.m. EST, all eyes will be on the TOSHIBA VISION screen atop One Times Square and six mobile LED screens throughout Times Square. The screens will feature New Year’s Eve content and entertainment for the more than one million-plus expected revelers including hourly practice countdowns, live and prerecorded video clips of musical performances from Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Demi Lovato, Wiz Khalifa with Charlie Puth, revelers, and celebrities.
As well as the Toshiba Hourly Countdown sponsor’s content every hour, popular science educator Bill Nye (of the Disney/PBS children’s TV show “Bill Nye the Science Guy”) will take to the official stage in Times Square to introduce Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision, the science and technology competition sponsored by Toshiba for school students in North America.
There will also be a “Japan Countdown” event at the main stage especially for Japanese people living in New York, starting at midnight on January 1st, 2016, Japan time (10 a.m. EST on December 31st, 2015). The Japan Countdown event will feature a countdown animation of calligraphy by Masumi Narita on the TOSHIBA VISION screen.
Moreover, Twitter will be transmitting 60 to 120 seconds of video footage of the New Year’s Eve celebrations at the top of the hour from the respective time zone in the world. This video feed will be seen on the TOSHIBA VISION from 7:00 a.m. through 11:00 p.m on December 31st, 2015. During each hour, Twitter will also provide tweets from world leaders, celebrities and user-generated content from the respective time zones on the TOSHIBA VISION.
Prominently positioned below the world-famous New Year countdown ball in New York City’s Times Square business and entertainment district, Toshiba’s massive dual LED signboards, known collectively as “TOSHIBA VISION,” serve a variety of promotional and public-service functions. In addition to illuminating the annual New Year countdown for upwards of 1 billion celebrants worldwide, an interlocking system connects both boards in brilliant seasonal displays and animated sporting events. From atop One Times Square Building, one of the most valuable advertising locations in the world, TOSHIBA VISION ensures superb domestic and international media exposure, providing the Toshiba brand with unrivalled quantitative and qualitative promotional benefits.
Next year will mark the 24th anniversary of Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision. Since its inception in 1992, more than 350,000 students from across the United States and Canada have participated in this student science competition. This fun and engaging program can inspire a lifelong love of science, technology and innovation for students and teachers alike. The ExploraVision competition for K-12 students engages the next generation in real world problem solving with a strong emphasis on STEM. ExploraVision challenges students envision and communicate new technology 20 years in the future through collaborative brainstorming and research of current science and technology.
- TOSHIBA VISION – New York New Year’s Eve Countdown
- 2016 New Year’s Eve live broadcast
- Times Square Ball App: Times Square Ball App for Apple and Android devices allows users to participate in the New Year’s Eve party. Users can watch a live stream of the events in Times Square leading up to New Year’s Eve and throughout the year, as well as the highlights promo and other exclusive video content.
- TOSHIBA VISION live streaming : Watch live video of the countdown, as well as year-round TOSHIBA VISION content.
- Official website of Times Square
sbe and Las Vegas Arena Announce Revolutionary Arena Nightlife Experience
sbe, the Los Angeles-based leading lifestyle hospitality company that develops, manages and operates award-winning hospitality venues, announced today the launch of Hyde Lounge at Las Vegas Arena set to open in April 2016. Hyde Lounge Las Vegas Arena will be the exclusive nightclub option at Las Vegas Arena, allowing guests to experience the height of service with views to match in an entertainment and sporting viewing experience unlike any other.
Hyde Lounge at Las Vegas Arena will be located high above the event action with two platforms extending over the arena seating for unparalleled viewing opportunities. The 18,000-square-foot space designed by Dakota Development and DesignAgency, will also feature an intimate lounge experience complete with bottle service, plush couches, high-energy DJs, VIP elevator access, a selection of culinary treats, and skyline views of the famed Las Vegas Strip.
sbe‘s Hyde brand has been visionary in transforming how spectators enjoy entertainment and sporting events with its first evolution of the nightlife heritage brand Hyde Lounge at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles followed by Hyde at American Airlines Arena in Miami.
Las Vegas Arena, a 20,000-seat venue located between New York-New York Hotel & Casino and Monte Carlo Resort and Casino, has been developed through a partnership between AEG and MGM Resorts International. The venue is scheduled to host more than 100 events annually including UFC, boxing and other sporting events; major headline entertainment, awards shows and special events. The newest landmark will have a significant impact on the city’s entertainment landscape while providing Las Vegas visitors and the local community a guest experience second to none.
sbe is a leading lifestyle hospitality company that develops, manages and operates award-winning hotels, restaurants and night clubs. Through exclusive partnerships with cultural visionaries, the company is dedicated to delivering the best in service, design, culinary programming, and entertainment. Already a proven leader in the hospitality and real estate industries, sbe has more than 80 properties currently operating or in development, and has expanded several of its flagship brands including SLS Hotels, Katsuya, The Bazaar by Jose Andres, Hyde Lounge and The Redbury, nationally and internationally. The company will debut a new slate of hotel & residence properties in 2016, including the recently announced Hyde Hotel & Residences. Founded in 2002 by Chairman and CEO Sam Nazarian, sbe is a privately held company. More information about sbe can be obtained at sbe.com or by downloading the sbe App.
Las Vegas Arena is a privately funded $375 million indoor arena set to open in April 2016. The 20,000-seat venue, located west of the Las Vegas Strip between New York-New York and Monte Carlo, is expected to host more than 100 events annually, including UFC, boxing, hockey, basketball and other sporting events, major headline entertainment, awards shows, family shows and special events. Las Vegas’ newest landmark will feature 50 luxury suites, more than two dozen private loge boxes, complete broadcast facilities, and other specially designed exclusive hospitality offerings and fan amenities destined to create a guest experience second to none.
The Arena has partnered with international iconic brands Coca-Cola, Schneider Electric and Toshiba American Business Solutions Inc., as the venue’s first “Founding Partners.” These Founding Partners will introduce and brand signature fan initiatives, displays and interactive spaces including Toshiba Plaza, an adjacent two-acre entertainment space which will feature a performance stage, a variety of video screens and other interactive content and display areas. Industry-leading architect Populous designed the venue to meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s standards for LEED® Goldh Certification. The Las Vegas Arena is a joint venture between AEG and MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM). For more information visit the Las Vegas Arena website at www.renalasvegas.com.
Start with friends and family, sprinkle in some gourmet food and festive drinks, then top it all off with dancing and postcard-perfect views – that’s the ideal recipe for New Year’s Eve, according to Four Seasons. Whether you’re craving a quiet and cosy night or a raucous ringing-in of 2016, these round-the-globe get-togethers offer great ways to bid farewell to one year and welcome another.
Journey back in time: At Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, revellers can party like it’s 1929 at a themed Great Gatsby Party. Enjoy panoramic views from the rooftop Mercury Lounge with a glass of bubbly from the premium Champagne bar in hand while eclectic performers help you count down to midnight. A five-course menu ensures you’ll have plenty of energy to dance the night away in true Jay and Daisy style.
Sample a traditional treat: If the final hours of 2015 find you lucky enough to be staying at Four Seasons Hotel Prague, you’re in for a sweet surprise. Guests are invited to gather at a lively booth in front of the Hotel fortrdelník, a popular delicacy made from sugar-rolled dough that’s wrapped around a stick and grilled slowly until the sugar caramelises. Then, it’s finished with an irresistible combo of sugar, cinnamon and crushed walnuts. Savoured in the night air, this snack offers a taste of the past with a nod to the future.
Roll out the barrel: Cocktail connoisseurs planning to spend New Year’s Eve at Regent Singapore, A Four Seasons Hotel have been invited to create their very own barrel-aged beverage. A month before arrival, the mixology team at Manhattan Bar contacted party-goers to learn their spirit preference before filling a barrel for them. These barrels will be opened and used to create a memorable cocktail for saying “Cheers!” at the stroke of midnight. The Hotel also offers limousine transportation, a five-course meal and free-flowing bubbly all night long.
Take a walk on the “wild” side: Located just a short bicycle ride away, the Santa Barbara Zoo was the inspiration for the “Under the Big Top” party theme at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara. The oceanfront La Marina Ballroom will be decked out in vintage circus design, creating a backdrop for a celebration that PT Barnum himself would approve of.
Start spreading the news: Enjoy a classic New York celebration without the crowds at Four Seasons Hotel New York. As the ball drops in nearby Times Square, you’ll watch live from TY Bar after an evening of endless bubby, gourmet food (think: crab profiteroles and foie gras sushi), and a live band to bring out all your best dance moves. Enhancing the elegantly “chill” atmosphere is an ice bar that will be installed on the Hotel’s mezzanine, serving bottomless drinks. See and be seen at the Big Apple’s most stylish soirée!
Visit the happiest place on earth: At Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® Resort, New Year’s Eve offers delicious options at multiple venues. Capa, a rooftop steakhouse, serves up a three or five course prix fixe dinner with a choice of early or late reservations. Families might also enjoy the buffet at Ravello, which specialises in modern Italian cuisine. Regardless of which dinner you attend, you’ll be guaranteed entrance to the “After Party” in the Resort’s Grand Ballroom, complete with desserts, DJ and balloon drop. If Mom and Dad are craving a little alone time, Kids for All Seasons is throwing its own gathering for the younger generation.
The Island Spa at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa is launching a new Healing Waters Spa Menu, consisting of an innovative three-tier concept that helps guests restore their primal connection to the sea and reconnect with the essence of their true self.
Pioneering marine-based OSEA therapies and rituals draw on the healing properties of the ocean – from sea oxygen and sea salt to wild-harvested seaweed and nutrient-rich sea algae – via three “depths” of treatment experience to refresh, rebalance and rejuvenate:
Deep: incredibly effective treatments designed to have deep therapeutic impact in the minimum amount of time to take guests closer to themselves.
Deeper: exploratory experiences that draw on the essence of the ocean to restore a sense of harmony, ease and deeper reconnection to one’s true self.
Deepest: immersive journeys to support physical, mental and emotional wellbeing at the deepest level, leaving one’s entire being riding on the crest of a wave.
The star of the show, seaweed, is featured as seven different organic types (including gigartina, undaria and macrocystis) in powder, whole leaf and extract form, all hand-harvested from the most pristine waters on the planet. Treatments also use mineral-rich, sustainably harvested sea grass from the Resort’s own lagoon.
“The health benefits of spending time near and in the sea have been known for millennia,” explains Spa Manager Sanju Udhadhyay. “Seawater contains the same percentage of salt as human blood, sweat and tears and the same 66 trace elements, vitamins and minerals as the human body. Seaweed absorbs all these hydrating, softening, toning, slimming and anti-ageing properties, which can then be absorbed by the skin with wonderful results.”
Located on its own private island, The Island Spa is a sanctuary unto itself, offering unique massages, therapies, wraps, bathing, rituals, Night Spa, yoga and meditation.
The ocean-inspired theme runs throughout: from Tides of Time – Return to Youthfulness facial to Surfer – Return to Balance massage, and Sea of Life – Return to Peace ritual, as well SUP Yoga.
Leave your passport at home; this New Year’s Eve around-the-world-party only requires a ticket to the Queen Mary. Regally berthed in Long Beach harbor since 1967, she will again host an epic night of entertainment festivities and culinary adventures inspired by international destinations; five hours of dining, dancing and toasting aboard three acres of floating maritime history, as New Orleans, Moscow, Beijing, Tokyo and Hollywood is celebrated as only the Queen Mary can.
The Promenade Deck will evoke Bourbon Street at Mardi Gras, vibrating with the sounds of New Orleans Jazz spiced by Cajun cuisine and Hurricanes, the city’s famous rum-filled concoction raised high in the hands of bead-wearing revelers. Trade the Hurricane toasts for Moscow Mules in the Royal Salon, transformed to Red Square and a Russian celebration with DJ Mickey O spinning Hip Hop backed by dazzling aerialists. Good fortune and Chinese traditions await those on the Sports Deck where dragon dancers, lion dancers and a Kung Fu show will welcome the New Year, Beijing-style. Tokyo-bound guests will liberate their inner dancer on the Queen’s Verandah Deck turned ‘Tokyo at Night‘ featuring a Hip Hop Dance Show and DJ Barbie‘s Top 40 hits. Sushi, sakitinis and karaoke complete the Japanese adventure.
The international fete ends where it began, sipping champagne and dancing to the Hedge Hog Swing Band in the Grand Salon where Hollywood‘s glamour lives forever within the ship’s Art Deco decor. An exclusive island destination VIP ticket invites a limited number of guests to spend the night in Lahaina, Hawaii and Havana, Cuba. The Queen Mary’s New Year’s Eve party brings the best of New Year’s celebrations around the world to Long Beach.
“This year’s celebration takes on new meaning – as it becomes the first major event timed to the ship’s 80th Anniversary year. Offering global nighttime adventure and a glittering fireworks show the 2016 New Year’s Eve Party launches an important year for the Queen Mary and it all begins at midnight, December 31,” said Steve Sheldon, Director of Entertainment Events.
New Year’s Eve runs 8PM – 1AM. Guests must be at least 21 years old. Reservations for dining at Queen Mary’s restaurants are required. Bottle Service packages and private cabanas are available. For more information, pricing, hotel packages and more, visit:http://www.queenmary.com/events/new-years-eve/ or call 877-342-0742.
Located in the Port of Long Beach, California, the Queen Mary features a rich maritime history, authentic Art Deco décor, and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. At the time of her maiden voyage in 1936, she was considered the grandest ocean liner ever built. The Queen Mary features award-winning restaurants, historical attractions, numerous special event salons and 364 staterooms.
Guests Are Offered Many Ways To Enjoy Majestic Humpback Whales – On Water, Land Or In The Air
Hawaii’s whale season officially begins in December and Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea is prepared to welcome these spectacular marine creatures while providing guests with aquatic, air and land-based experiences that are not to be missed.
The Resort’s concierge team can customise a whale watching itinerary to help guests enjoy experiencing these gentle giants of the sea. Here are six different unique whale watching encounters available to guests who can enjoy one or more or take advantage of all opportunities. Some are complimentary:
- Kayak Tour: Maui Undersea Adventures, the Resort’s onsite water experts, will educate guests on the ocean’s ecosystem, taking in the spectacular vistas of the Wailea coastline while on the look out for the migratory whales.
- Catamaran Sail: Guests can reserve spots aboard a luxury catamaran such as the Alii Nui for a two-hour whale watching trip in Maui. Whale sightings are guaranteed or guests will be treated to another trip.
- Outrigger Experience: Guests learn the history and the how-to of this Hawaiian paddling sport. The instructors make sure guests keep their eyes and cameras peeled for whale sightings and point out the abundance of sea life – reef fish, sea turtles, manta rays and many other species right below the water’s surface. This is a complimentary program.
- Helicopter Tour: From the sky, guests will explore two islands and the whales in between on a Maui-Molokai tour, taking in the highlights of West Maui, Hawaii’s tallest waterfalls and Molokai’s magnificent sea cliffs.
- Underwater Photography Showcase: Four Seasons Resort Maui has collaborated with the Cesere Brothers, a dynamic photography duo who are “artists in residence” at the Resort and among the few with the authority to swim with and capture the whales’ marine moments through their underwater lens. Recipients of the prestigious 2015 International Photography Award receiving 1st place in Nature-Underwater category for their winning entry Maui Keiki, the Cesere Brothers showcase their images and engage in conversation with guests every Thursday at the Artists’ Showcase in the Resort’s most exquisite open-air gallery.
- Wai Vari Treatment: The Spa’s Wai Vari water treatment therapy is performed by specialised massage therapists in the tropical Pacific ocean. During the height of whale season, participants are likely to actually hear the whales singing underwater while experiencing this treatment.
To learn more about experiencing the whales, Resort rates and Maui vacation stays, call Four Seasons Resort Maui at 808 874 8000 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aboard the newly christened Crystal Esprit, Crystal Cruises‘ ultra-luxury yacht, CEO and President Edie Rodriguez unveiled to special guests and distinguished travel partners the line’s new brand campaign – All Exclusive(TM) – heralding the debut of the new Crystal as the company embarks on the most significant brand expansion in luxury travel and hospitality in its history
In addition to sharing Crystal’s new advertising campaign, Rodriguez announced the company’s plan to expand Crystal Luxury Air that currently includes a Boeing 777-200LR and Boeing 787 Dreamliner, with the addition of two ultra-long-range aircrafts in an elegant ACJ319 jet and a Bombardier Global Express XRS.
A play on the all inclusive platform the line adopted in 2013, which offers travelers a world-class luxury vacation that includes fine wines and spirits, pre-paid gratuities and enriching onboard experiences, Crystal’s All Exclusive(TM) embodies the world’s most luxurious travel portfolio. The campaign highlights a revolutionary collection of experiences that go far beyond all inclusive luxury to offer the most elegant journeys around the globe – by ocean, yacht, river and air.
“In a single phrase, ‘All Exclusive‘ takes the common industry term of ‘all inclusive’ and reshapes it into something bigger, bolder and unprecedented, where all inclusive is all exclusive,” said Rodriguez. “Since my arrival at Crystal, it has been my vision to grow this brand into something even more magical. Today, we are reinventing travel in a class all by itself, and All Exclusive is the perfect representation of that. Whether it is by ocean, river or air, everything we do is designed to take our guests to a new level of luxury, service and adventure.“
The comprehensive, 360-degree brand campaign roll-out will encompass all elements of Crystal’s marketing and sales – advertising, brochures, website, direct mail and more. Leveraging high-end, stunning and stylish photography to evoke the feelings and sensations unique to the award-winning Crystal Experience, the imagery portrays a dreamlike state where imaginations are brought to life, where anything you want in travel is available to you, any time, all the time, creating the memories of a lifetime.
Crystal’s private charter jet service, which takes flight in March 2016, will provide the luxury line’s superior guest service, catering to corporate executives, small groups and discerning travelers with a preference for flexible and individual travel. In addition to doubling the initial air projections with the expanded aircraft fleet, Crystal will work with the Registry of Aruba in developing and securing an Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC). This will pave the way for Crystal Luxury Air to launch international operations.
The twin-aisle BBJ B777-200LR will be redesigned to accommodate just 88 guests with flat-bed first class seats; a beautifully appointed lounge and bar; and offer 14- and 28-day around-the-world and international itineraries, beginning in 2017.
The Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner, which typically seats up to 300 passengers, will be redesigned to accommodate just 52 guests, and boast the premium luxury that discerning global travelers have come to expect from Crystal, including copious amounts of guest space, plush amenities and Crystal’s world-class service and crew. Trips will include accommodations at the world’s most luxurious hotels, the finest Michelin star-level cuisine prepared by celebrated chefs and fabulous local cultural entertainment. Additionally, the aircrafts can be arranged for special charters.
The new planes will service private charters and transport guests to their Crystal destinations for ocean, river or yacht voyages from any point in the United States to the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean and the Pacific.
The ACJ319 jet will accommodate just 30 travelers in the utmost luxury, including 16 lay-flat seats, and beginning summer 2016 it will transport guests to their desired Crystal destination, including to ocean, river and yacht voyages.
Recognized in the private jet industry as the epitome of luxury and comfort, the Bombardier Global Express XRS will feature a spacious two-cabin configuration, accommodating up to 13 guests, four executive wide club seats with foldout tables, a four-place conference space opposite a single seat workstation and cabinet, laptop imagery on cabin monitors, surround sound, high temperature oven and an aft entertainment cabin with a 31.5 inch LCD.
“With our vast choice of aircrafts, we are confident Crystal Luxury Air will deliver the fast and hassle-free requirements our guests and discerning travelers have been wanting with global air travel,” said Rodriguez.
For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit www.crystalcruises.com.
This Volunteer-Run Organization Fills A Crucial Need In Nashville. All Youth Deserve Street-Free Sleep.
As we all sit down today to celebrate Christmas with our family and friends with plentiful food and drinks and presents, it’s worth noting that that not everyone has it so good. Homelessness and LGBTQ youth status are closely intertwined. According to the National Coalition for the Homeless, family rejection and expulsion from the family home based on a youth’s sexual orientation or gender identity is the leading cause of LGBTQ youth homelessness. TWENTY TO 40% OF HOMELESS YOUTH IDENTIFY AS LGBTQ. To further complicate matters, LGBTQ youth frequently find many shelters unwelcoming or unsafe. As an alternative, these individuals are often sexually exploited because they cannot find shelter.
Launch Pad is a street-free sleep initiative developed by the LGBTQ and allied community in Nashville (Tenn.) to provide temporary sleeping shelters for youth ages 18-24 in Davidson County. Nashville will only open its winter emergency warming shelters when the temperature reaches below freezing — 25 degrees. Launch Pad is open regardless of the temperature to make sure that homeless young adults have a safe place to sleep.
They welcome all youth, and LGBTQ youth in particular can feel confident that they will spend the night in a safe and affirming space. Launch Pad works with local churches and over 100 volunteers to provide dinner, bedding, breakfast, and showers for our guests. Their goal is to meet the immediate needs of homeless youth while working toward a broader comprehensive system of care, in partnership with local, state, and federal agencies.
Since Launch Pad started in November 2014, it has opened for 90 nights, hosted 807 guests and served 142 unique young adults ages 18-24. And the need for even more services for homeless youth in America—LGBTQ or otherwise– continue to grow at an alarming rate. The growth in the program is tremendous but carries the burden of limited resources.
In the beginning, the shelter was open for only one night a week. This winter, Launch Pad is open at three sites, three nights a week. They would like to do much, much more. The volunteers at Launch Pad has the passion and the people power, but needs your help to ensure that they have the financial resources to provide for the basic needs of our most vulnerable youth. They have set a funding goal of $25,000 that will go toward mattresses, food, toiletries, operational needs, and winter-weather supplies (winter jackets, longjohns, clean underwear, socks, winter boots, etc.) for their guests throughout 2016. Launch Pad is 100% staffed by volunteers, so all donations will go directly toward the youth they serve.
– A $15 donation covers the cost of providing space, food, and supplies for 3 guests a night.
– A $60 donation covers pizza for a night when we don’t have a home cooked meal.
– A $125 donation covers the cost of a mattress that we can use at a brand new site.
Through www.fundrazr.com, Launch Pad has initiated a fundraising campaign (https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/013UA4). To find out more information about this worthy organization and/or to donate, please visit www.nashvillelaunchpad.com. Anything you can do to help will go a long way towards making the lives of these homeless youth better.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that 10 films remain in the running in the Visual Effects category for the 88th Academy Awards®.
The films are listed below in alphabetical order:
“Avengers: Age of Ultron”
“Mad Max: Fury Road”
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”
The Academy’s Visual Effects Branch Executive Committee determined the shortlist. All members of the Visual Effects Branch will now be invited to view 10-minute excerpts from each of the shortlisted films on Saturday, January 9, 2016. Following the screenings, the members will vote to nominate five films for final Oscar consideration.
The 88th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Thursday, January 14, 2016, at 5:30 a.m. PT at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.
The fashion-forward make-up brand is launching a global search to find the freshest new faces in beauty vlogging: The London Look International Contest With Rita Ora. Hosted by celebrated singer-songwriter and Rimmel ambassador Rita Ora, this worldwide hunt is set to unearth amazing beauty talents and help propel them to stardom. The most exciting and gifted could find far-reaching fame as a Rimmel online advocate, taking the London Look to every corner of the earth.
Rimmel’s Top Tips For Creating The Perfect Entry
Mix It Up: Look at what’s been done before, try to be different and stand out from the crowd.
Have An Idea: Phone box red lip? London eyes? Create a fun theme and title to help viewers understand your #LondonLook.
Set The Stage: Find the perfect backdrop with everything you need at hand.
Lighting: Make sure your face is well lit so it’s easy to see the details of your make-up creation.
Product: Let viewers know which Rimmel London products you are using so they try the look themselves.
Attitude: Be as descriptive as you can and show-off your fun side.
Camillo Pane, Coty Chief Growth and Digital Officer, comments: “We’re very proud of the London Look International Contest because it gives Rimmel customers everywhere a fantastic chance to interact with the brand and show us their cutting-edge creativity. It’s an opportunity no beauty blogger or vlogger will want to miss. The contest is a great example of how Coty is strengthening its digital capabilities, with many exciting and innovative online initiatives to come.”
If you are interested, entering is simple: create your best London-inspired make-up look and upload your video or picture on www.RimmelLondon.com, or follow Rimmel and tag your entry #LONDONLOOK on Instagram and Twitter. Experience in creating videos, pictures or vlogs isn’t necessary, the judges are looking for original ideas, style and attitude.
The London Look International Contest With Rita Ora is open from 21st December 2015 until 22nd January 2016. For entry details and contest rules, log onto www.RimmelLondon.com.
Shaver Newest Addition To Wahl’s Multicultural Line
Wahl, an international industry leader in the manufacturing of products for consumer personal care, as well as the professional beauty and barber salon trade, has made it possible to find that last-minute gift for the guys on your list that will be a little less painful. The new Bump-Free Shaver, part of Wahl‘s multi-cultural line of grooming tools, is designed to deliver a super close shave without razor-bumps, a common issue among African American men.
Pseudofolliculitis barbae, otherwise known as razor bumps, occurs when facial hair grows back into the skin. This can be caused by grooming tools that are not designed to prevent ingrown hairs. With this in mind, Wahl developed its Bump-Free Shaver with a hypoallergenic titanium foil, which together with new blunt-cut technology, reduces inflammation without sacrificing a close shave.
The Bump-Free Shaver features a sleek, carbon-fiber appearance and non-slip comfort grip; and comes with a full-width pop up trimmer for precise detailing of the side-burns and neckline and offers a cord-cordless design that allows you to plug in or groom on the go with up to 60 minutes of run-time.
The new Bump-Free Shaver complements Wahl’s full line of multi-cultural products which include the T-Pro Trimmer and Ultra Close Cut Pro Clipper. This line is engineered to deliver close and comfortable grooming without pulling or snagging.
The T-Pro trimmer is compact yet extremely versatile, allowing men to shave, detail, trim, fade and outline with one tool. It combines a diamond-finished T-blade design and Wahl’s bump-prevent technology to deliver a smooth and even cut. It’s backed by a powerful, heavy-duty rotary motor and corded operation that promote uncompromised cutting through all hair types.
For men who like to cut their hair at home, Wahl’s Ultra Close Cut Pro Clipper delivers a new level of close. The latest in home haircutting, it is the right tool for balding, outlining and detailing. Its self-sharpening zero overlap blades deliver skin-close cutting without any pulling or snagging. The POWERDRIVE® Plus Heavy Duty motor also delivers exceptional power and runs 15 percent cooler.
Wahl’s multi-cultural line of grooming tools is available at select retailers nationwide (including Walmart and www.amazon.com). The T-Pro Trimmer MSRP is $24.99; the Bump-Free Shaver MSRP is $69.99; and the Ultra Close Cut Pro Clipper MSRP is $39.99. More product information and grooming tips can be found at wahlgrooming.com.
Freeport, Maine outdoor retailer’s third Virginia store is part of its overall retail expansion strategy to have 100 retail stores by 2020
L.L.Bean, an internationally recognized outdoor retailer best known for its iconic Bean Boot, everyday free shipping and 100% satisfaction guarantee, is set to expand its retail operation with the opening of its third Virginia store, scheduled to open the spring of 2016. The new L.L.Bean store will be located at Lynnhaven Mall, featuring over 180 shops and restaurants located in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The 16,700 square-foot store will feature an assortment of active and casual apparel and footwear, as well as outdoor lifestyle gear including hiking, fly-fishing, kayaking and winter gear and camping products. The store will employ approximately 100 people. This will be L.L.Bean’s third store in Virginia and its 28th retail store outside of Maine. Current L.L.Bean Virginia locations include stores at Tysons Corner Center in McLean and at the Short Pump Town Center in Richmond.
“One of the reasons this will be a great home for us is due to all of the great outdoor activities that abound, from paddling and fishing on the Atlantic Ocean and Chesapeake Bay to hiking and cycling in the several state parks nearby,” said Ken Kacere, Senior Vice-President And General Manager Of Retail at L.L.Bean. “We’re excited to be introducing the L.L.Bean brand to the people of the Virginia Beach area, where they can touch, see, feel and experience the true essence of an outdoor store, combined with a bit of the Maine spirit.”
L.L.Bean made the decision to continue to expand its retail presence into Virginia Beach as part of its overall retail expansion plan and due to the high level of brand affinity the area residents have for L.L.Bean. In addition, the area is also in proximity to several abundant natural resources and multiple opportunities for many outdoor activities, as well as a population base that enjoys regularly engaging in a variety of outdoor pursuits. The store will allow the people of the Virginia Beach area and beyond to experience first-hand everything that the legendary outdoor retailer has to offer, such as quality merchandise, a welcoming shopping environment and a large roster of ongoing demonstrations and clinics on a number of outdoor topics.
Of particular note will be the inclusion of L.L.Bean’s Outdoor Discovery Schools, which will offer demonstrations, clinics and introductory hands-on activities like snowshoeing, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, archery and fly casting, all designed to make it easy for people to engage in outdoor activities for health, fitness and recreation. L.L.Bean Outdoor Discovery Schools’ courses are offered at every L.L.Bean Retail Store. In 2014, over 130,000 people participated in these programs.
“L.L. Bean is a great addition to Lynnhaven Mall’s existing retail line-up. We welcome them to our family of stores and to the Hampton Roads market,” said Michael Harris, General Manager, Lynnhaven Mall. “We know our shoppers will find the L.L.Bean brand a perfect match for their active lifestyles.”
The Production Also Features Yonghoon Lee In His Met Role Debut As The Title Character, Dolora Zajick In Her Signature Role Of The Gypsy Azucena, And Dmitri Hvorostovsky As Count Di Luna
Verdi’s dramatic and tuneful favorite Il Trovatore kicks off the new season of THIRTEEN‘S Great Performances at the Met Friday, January 22 at 9 p.m.on PBS, and repeated Sunday, January 24 at 12 p.m. (Check local listings.)
Il Trovatore was originally seen live in movie theaters on October 3, 2015 as part of the groundbreaking The Met: Live in HD series, which transmits live performances to more than 2,000 movie theaters and performing arts centers in over 70 countries around the world. The Live in HD series has reached a record-breaking 18 million viewers since its inception in 2006.
Soprano Anna Netrebko appears in her highly anticipated Met role debut as Leonora, the tortured heroine who sacrifices her own life for the love of the Gypsy troubadour. Dmitri Hvorostovsky sings Count di Luna,Yonghoon Lee is Manrico, Dolora Zajick sings her signature role of the Gypsy Azucena, and Štefan Kocán is Ferrando. Marco Armiliato conducts Sir David McVicar‘s Goya-inspired production.
In a remarkable career spanning six decades in the theater, Giuseppe Verdi (1813–1901) composed 28 operas, at least half of which are at the core of today’s repertoire. Salvadore Cammarano (1801–1852) was one of the foremost librettists of his day. He collaborated with Donizetti (Lucia di Lammermoor, among others) and wrote the text for La Battaglia di Legnano and Luisa Miller for Verdi. After his death the Trovatore libretto was completed by fellow writer Leone Emanuele Bardare (1820–after 1874).
PART 1: THE DUEL
Spain is torn apart by civil war. The commander of the Royalist Aragon troops, Count di Luna, is obsessed with Leonora, a young noblewoman in the queen’s service, who does not return his love. Outside the royal residence his soldiers keep watch at night. An unknown troubadour has been heard serenading Leonora and the jealous count is determined to capture and punish him. To keep his troops awake, the captain, Ferrando, recounts the terrible story of a Gypsy woman who was burned at the stake years ago for bewitching the count’s infant brother. The Gypsy’s daughter then took revenge by kidnapping the boy and—so the story goes—throwing him into the flames where her mother had died. The charred skeleton of a baby was discovered there and di Luna’s father died of grief soon after. No trace was ever found of the Gypsy’s daughter, but di Luna, always hoping that the remains might not have been his brother’s, has sworn to find her.
In the palace gardens Leonora confesses to her companion that she is in love with a mysterious man she met before the outbreak of the war. It is he who now returns as the troubadour to serenade her each night. After they have left, Count di Luna appears, looking for Leonora. The troubadour’s song is heard in the darkness and Leonora rushes out to greet him but is seized instead by di Luna. The troubadour reveals his true identity: he is Manrico, leader of the partisan rebel forces. Furious, the count challenges him to fight to the death.
PART 2: THE GYPSY
The duel has been fought. Manrico overpowered the count but some instinct stopped him from killing his rival. The war has raged on with the Royalist forces victorious in the last battle. Manrico has been badly wounded and nursed back to health by his mother, the Gypsy Azucena, in a camp in the mountains.
Azucena is the woman di Luna has been looking for. Her life is scarred by the memory of her mother’s death and the terrible revenge she exacted. Manrico, who has never heard the full story, is determined to finally know the truth. Azucena tells him how she stole the count’s infant son but that the child she murdered in her manic rage was in fact her own. When Manrico demands to know who he truly is, Azucena is evasive: all that matters is the love of a mother she has shown him all his life and that he does not fail to take revenge on the house of di Luna. A messenger arrives with news of Leonora. Believing Manrico has died in battle, and to escape the grasp of di Luna, she is entering a convent. Azucena pleads with Manrico to stay, but he resolves to go to her immediately.
Di Luna arrives at the convent with his troops to take Leonora by force, but his attempt to seize her is foiled by the attack of Manrico and his men. In the ensuing fight, the lovers escape.
PART 3: THE GYPSY’S SON
Di Luna has laid siege to the fortress where Manrico has taken refuge with Leonora. Azucena, who has been captured by Ferrando wandering nearby, is brought into the camp. When she hears di Luna’s name, her reaction arouses suspicion and Ferrando recognizes her as the murderer of the count’s brother. Azucena cries out to Manrico to rescue her and di Luna realizes he now has his enemy in his hands. He orders a pyre built to burn Azucena before the walls of the fortress.
Inside the castle, Manrico and Leonora are preparing to be married. She is frightened, but he assures her of his love even in the face of death. When news of Azucena’s capture arrives, he summons his men and prepares to attack. Continue reading
Luxury Yacht Launches Crystal Cruises’ Next Chapter
New Ultra-Luxury Yacht Will Offer Extensive Roster Of Combinable Mediterranean Itineraries In Croatia, Montenegro, Greece, Italy, Turkey, Slovenia And Cyprus
Crystal Cruises, the world’s most awarded luxury cruise line, officially welcomed Crystal Esprit to its fleet of ultra-luxury vessels Sunday, as the sleek yacht was christened in an elegant ceremony held at Eden Island Marina in Mahe, Victoria, Seychelles. Crystal’s president and CEO, Edie Rodriguez, welcomed a distinguished audience of local dignitaries, yacht guests, travel partners and professionals and executives from the line’s new parent company, Genting Hong Kong (GHK), for a day of celebration, as Crystal Esprit marks the beginning of one of the most significant brand expansions in luxury travel and hospitality history.
On hand to christen Crystal Esprit was the yacht’s godmother, Lady Gaenor Anne Meakes, fiancee of Mark Richards, one of the world’s most awarded and recognized yachtsmen. Richards serves as chief executive of Grand Banks Yachts, based in Australia, and is an eight-time champion skipper of the 628-mile Sydney-to-Hobart yacht race. Lady Meakes christened the yacht with the traditional breaking of Champagne against the hull – specifically a bottle of Louis Roederer, Cristal Brut, 2004. The evening culminated with an elaborate fireworks display at sea.
“To say today is a special day is an understatement,” said Rodriguez. “Since joining Crystal just over two years ago, a personal goal of mine has been to see Crystal realize the next step in continuing to pioneer luxury travel and hospitality; and today I am seeing that dream fulfilled.” She went on to personally thank GHK Chairman and CEO, Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay, for his and his company’s support of her vision for Crystal’s future.
Just months after its idyllic maiden voyage through the Seychelles, Crystal Yacht Cruises’ Crystal Esprit will spend the spring, summer and fall of 2016 cruising some of the Adriatic Coast’s most coveted locales. Each of the seven-day voyages aboard the 62-guest yacht can be combined with the following one to create expanded vacations without repeating ports. From the end of March through October of 2016, more than 30 itineraries will cruise to destinations, many of which are only accessible by smaller vessels, captivating guests with the destination’s beauty, charm and historical significance.
“Crystal Esprit’s Mediterranean and Adriatic Coast voyages reflect the yacht itself – sailing in a region that has long been beloved by Crystal guests and travelers the world over, but also exploring destinations in an entirely new way,” says Rodriguez. “These itineraries perfectly blend some of Western Europe’s most famously bustling cities with other, more remote and quaint spots.”
With a focus on intimate access and active experiences, the sailings will offer new perspectives on currently favored destinations visited by the line’s ocean-going ships, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity. All of the itineraries have been carefully crafted to heavily explore several destinations within one or two countries, allowing guests a more immersive cultural experience. Some of the yacht’s Mediterranean locales include:
Piran, Slovenia – Set at the very tip of the Slovenian peninsula, which is the heart of what is affectionately known as the world’s outdoor playground, but also boasting a beautifully-preserved historic Old Town. Here, Crystal guests can enjoy the bounty of natural adventures and meandering walkways between seafood restaurants.
Kotor, Montenegro – A tradition-rich town that blends imposing walled fortresses with welcoming piazzas. Set at the base of a dramatically sloped mountain, Kotor is loved by history buffs and travelers with a taste for striking architecture and rich cuisine. The spectacular Kotor Fjord that surrounds the destination is, in itself, a “must see” for travelers.
Limassol, Cyprus – Truly a playground for virtually every type of traveler, with its storied past (look for Byzantine castles, Venetian walls and conflicting Greek and Turkish influences); outdoor escapes (with rugged landscapes that beckon hikers and explorers and waters that scuba divers find irresistible); and a vast menu of foods that reflect the many cultural influences on the island.
Kaş, Turkey – Where divers will find more than exotic sea life, but also centuries-old shipwrecks to explore in the famously inviting waters. Besides the plethora of outdoor adventures for which Kaş is ideal, the town is also populated with ancient walls, theaters and rock tombs that help tell its fabled history. Continue reading
Grounded in a Natural Science Curriculum, Special From PBS KIDS’ Newest Series Debuts Monday, January 18, Kicking Off a Week of New Episodes; Related Digital Content Will Also Be Available
On Monday, January 18, 2016, PBS KIDS will premiere a one-hour special from its newest series NATURE CAT. The special will repeat throughout the week of January 18 and will be available free on both pbskids.org and the PBS KIDS Video App, which is accessible on a variety of mobile devices and platforms such as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Xbox One and Chromecast. Additional new episodes from NATURE CAT will also debut throughout the week (check local listings). New related games, clips and full episodes will also be available on PBS KIDS’ digital platforms throughout the month.
Grounded in a natural science curriculum, NATURE CAT, is designed to encourage children ages 3-8 to go outside and explore the outdoors, while learning about a variety of scientific topics along the way. The NATURE CAT special will include four 11-minute stories with Nature Cat (voiced by Saturday Night Live’s Taran Killam), along with his pals Squeeks the mouse (Kate McKinnon), Hal the dog (Bobby Moynihan) and Daisy, a pet rabbit (Kate Micucci, The Big Bang Theory), as they embark on action-packed adventures, perilous missions, nature investigations and “a-ha” discovery moments. In each story, the characters model age-appropriate reasoning skills and explore natural science concepts, such as the role seeds play in plants’ life cycles and the types of wildlife found in various environments.
“When the weather turns colder in January, kids may be more reluctant to explore their surroundings, but with an all-new NATURE CAT special from PBS KIDS, their curiosity will be sparked to turn to outdoor adventures,” said Lesli Rotenberg, General Manager, Children’s Media, PBS. “PBS KIDS is proud to offer new, free, engaging media content across multiple platforms that will give kids a chance to recreate the adventures of Nature Cat and his friends and learn about the natural wonders that abound in their own backyard or local park.”
Premieres Monday, January 18, 2016 (check local listings). Four all-new 11-minute stories are packed into a super special hour:
“Stream and Shout” − Nature Cat goes to his Nature Curiosity List for inspiration and finds number 73: “Where do streams begin?” This seemingly simple question leads the gang on an action-packed adventure, as they follow the stream uphill, exploring new environments and meeting all sorts of friendly critters. When they finally find out where the stream begins, they are whoa-ho-ho amazed!
Curriculum: Streams start out as runoff from rain or snow and flow into larger and larger bodies of water, eventually reaching the ocean.
“Hal’s Day Off” − After a silly mishap leaves Hal alone in the big city (well, he does have his chew-toy Mr. Chewinsky with him), it’s up to Nature Cat, Squeeks and Daisy to make their way to the city and find Hal! Tally ho! Even though Hal is having so much fun sightseeing, he will need to get home somehow. When Nature Cat, Squeeks and Daisy can’t locate Hal, they turn for help to animals that they never even knew lived in the city!
Curriculum: Different kinds of wild animals can survive and even thrive in city neighborhoods.
“Tally Ho! A Rainbow” − After a rainstorm (Nature Cat is sure glad it’s over!), Daisy wants to capture a picture of a rainbow for her Granny Bunny, who just loves rainbows! But finding a rainbow is easier said than done, as the four friends trek all over in search of it!
Curriculum: Just after a rainstorm, when the sun comes out, you can stand with your back to it and look for a rainbow in the sky.
“Travelin’ Seeds” − When Daisy finds a beautiful flower in her garden that she didn’t plant, it’s up to Nature Cat and his pals to find out where the flower came from. Their investigation leads them through the park and into the woods, where the clues show them that seeds can actually travel far distances and grow where they land.
Curriculum: Some plants make seeds that will travel to new growing places to continue the plants’ cycle of life. Continue reading
Featuring the Vienna Boys’ Choir, On THIRTEEN’s Great Performances Friday, January 1 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. ET on PBS
The Vienna Philharmonic And Soloists Of The Vienna State Ballet Return For The Beloved Annual Tradition Against The Joyful Backdrop Of The Scenic City
Stage and screen legend Julie Andrews returns for the seventh time to host the festive annual New Year’s celebration with the Vienna Philharmonic, under the direction of Mariss Jansons, from Vienna’s Musikverein. From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016, featuring the infectious melodies of the Strauss Family and their contemporaries, airs on Great Performances, Friday, January 1 at 2:30 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings) with an encore performance that evening at 7:30 p.m.
Maestro Jansons is returning for the third time to conduct the ever-popular concert. The Vienna Boys’ Choir and soloists of the Vienna State Ballet also return for the gala evening.
This is the largest worldwide event in classical music reaching millions of people annually through radio and television in over 80 countries. The Vienna Philharmonic’s traditional New Year’s program has showcased Viennese musical culture at the highest level, and since the first television broadcast in 1959, sent the world a New Year’s greeting in the spirit of hope, friendship and peace. (The telecast marks the 32nd broadcast of the event on PBS.)
The musical program is as follows:
Johann Strauss – “A Night in Venice” Overture
Eduard Strauss – Out of Control, Quick Polka
Josef Strauss – Music of the Spheres, Waltz
Johann Strauss – Singers Joy, French Polka (with Vienna Boys’ Choir)
Josef Strauss – On Holiday, Quick Polka (with Vienna Boys’ Choir)
Johann Strauss – “Princess Ninetta” – Entr’acte between Acts 2 and 3
Emil Waldteufel – España, Waltz (after Chabrier)
Johann Strauss, Sr. – Sighs Galop
Josef Strauss – The Dragonfly, Polka Mazur
Johann Strauss – Emperor Waltz
Johann Strauss – On the Hunt, Quick Polka
Johann Strauss – Double-time! Quick Polka –
Johann Strauss – On the Beautiful Blue Danube, Waltz
Johann Strauss, Sr. – Radetsky March
Julie Andrews’ role as host of these New Year’s broadcasts continues to be a cherished tradition for viewers and the beloved singer, actress, and author herself: “Vienna is a magical city…rich in culture and history. The glorious music it has brought to the world is a gift. I look forward to hosting another New Year’s celebration and sharing some of the incredible sights and sounds that are uniquely Vienna.“
As is customary with these broadcasts, Ms. Andrews will travel from her home base in the Musikverein hall itself to visit multiple picturesque Vienna landmarks, including The Imperial Summer Palace of Schönbrunn, and The Kaiserloge in the Royal Enclosure at Austria’s Freudenau racetrack; The Winter Riding School in the Hofburg; the Imperial Carriage Museum; Vienna’s first public park, The Volksgarten; and the Volksgarten Club Disco (once Petro Corti’s Kaffeehaus where the Strausses performed); and the historic Tirolerhof farmhouse. Continue reading
MASTERPIECE and PBS will premiere “Sherlock: The Abominable Bride,” a 90-minute special, on Friday, January 1, 2016 on MASTERPIECE Mystery! on PBS at 9:00 p.m. ET, and simultaneously online at pbs.org/masterpiece. The special will have an encore broadcast on Sunday, January 10 at 10:00 p.m. ET. This is the first time that “Sherlock” has premiered in the US and the United Kingdom on the same day.
Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit) return as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in the acclaimed modern retelling of Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic stories. But now our heroes find themselves in 1890s London. Beloved characters Mary Morstan (played by Amanda Abbington), Inspector Lestrade (Rupert Graves) and Mrs. Hudson (Una Stubbs) also turn up at 221b Baker Street. “Sherlock: The Abominable Bride” is a 90-minute “Sherlock” special.
Sherlock is a global phenomenon, engaging audiences from Berlin to Beijing, from Texas to Tokyo. The show has been sold to over 240 territories across the world, won 12 BAFTAs, 7 Emmys® and a prestigious Peabody Award as well as accolades at the Edinburgh TV Festival and the Television Critics Association in the U.S. Sherlock made its mark in U.S. pop-culture being one of only three British TV shows that have appeared on the cover of Entertainment Weekly.
In addition to the simultaneous premieres, BBC Worldwide North America has partnered with Fathom Events for the first theatrical screening event of Sherlock: The Abominable Bride, marking the debut of Cumberbatch and Freeman on the big screen in their iconic roles as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson. The feature-length screening will premiere on Tuesday, January 5 and Wednesday, January 6, 2016 both at 7:30 p.m. local time. Theater audiences will experience 20 minutes of exclusive, additional footage – which will include a guided set tour of 221B Baker Street hosted by co-writer/executive producer Steven Moffat – prior to the feature, and a “making of” short film starring Cumberbatch, Freeman and many more immediately following. Sherlock is produced by Hartswood Films for BBC One and co-produced by MASTERPIECE.
“Sherlock”, Season 4, will go into production in Spring 2016. Airdate TBD.
“Sherlock” is produced by Hartswood Films for BBC One and co-produced by MASTERPIECE. It was created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and inspired by the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. “Sherlock: The Abominable Bride” was co-written by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. The executive producers are Beryl Vertue, Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat, Sue Vertue and Rebecca Eaton for MASTERPIECE.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, from 2000 to 2014 nearly half a million Americans died from drug overdoses. Opioid overdose deaths, including both opioid pain relievers and heroin, hit record levels in 2014, with an alarming 14 percent increase in just one year, according to new data published in the December 1 8th edition of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The most commonly prescribed opioid pain relievers, those classified as natural or semi-synthetic opioids such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, continue to be involved in more overdose deaths than any other opioid type. These deaths increased by 9 percent (813 more deaths in 2014 than 2013).
Increases in prescription opioid pain reliever and heroin deaths are the biggest driver of the drug overdose epidemic. Deaths from heroin increased in 2014, continuing a sharp rise that has seen heroin overdoses triple since 2010. Deaths involving illicitly made fentanyl, a potent opioid often added to or sold as heroin, also are on the upswing.
The findings show that two distinct but intertwined trends are driving America’s overdose epidemic: a 15-year increase in deaths from prescription opioid pain reliever overdoses as a result of misuse and abuse, and a recent surge in illicit drug overdoses driven mainly by heroin. Both of these trends worsened in 2014.
More than six out of 10 drug overdose deaths in 2014 involved opioids, including opioid pain relievers and heroin. The largest increase in opioid overdose deaths involved synthetic opioids (not including methadone), which were involved in 5,500 deaths in 2014, nearly twice as many as the year before. Many of these overdoses are believed to involve illicitly-made fentanyl, a short-acting opioid.
In addition, heroin-related death rates increased 26 percent from 2013–2014, totaling 10,574 deaths in 2014. Past misuse of prescription opioids is the strongest risk factor for heroin initiation and use—especially among people who became dependent upon or abused prescription opioids in the past year. The increased availability of heroin, its relatively low price (compared to prescription opioids), and high purity appear to be major drivers of the upward trend in heroin use, overdoses, and deaths.
“The increasing number of deaths from opioid overdose is alarming,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “The opioid epidemic is devastating American families and communities. To curb these trends and save lives, we must help prevent addiction and provide support and treatment to those who suffer from opioid use disorders. This report also shows how important it is that law enforcement intensify efforts to reduce the availability of heroin, illegal fentanyl, and other illegal opioids.”
Drug overdose deaths are up in both men and women, in non-Hispanic whites and blacks, and in adults of nearly all ages. Rates of drug overdose deaths were highest among five states: West Virginia, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Kentucky, and Ohio. A map of drug overdose deaths by state (2013 and 2014) is available at http://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/data/statedeaths.html.
HOW TO STOP THE EPIDEMIC
– The new findings point to four ways to prevent overdose deaths:
Limit initiation into opioid misuse and addiction. Opioid pain reliever prescribing has quadrupled since 1999. Providing health care professionals with additional tools and information—including safer guidelines for prescribing these drugs—can help them make more informed prescribing decisions.
– Expand access to evidence-based substance use disorder treatment—including Medication-Assisted Treatment—for people who suffer from opioid use disorder.
– Protect people with opioid use disorder by expanding access and use of naloxone—a critical drug that can reverse the symptoms of an opioid overdose and save lives.
– State and local public health agencies, medical examiners and coroners, and law enforcement agencies must work together to improve detection of and response to illicit opioid overdose outbreaks to address this emerging threat to public health and safety.
The CDC works with states, communities, and prescribers to prevent opioid misuse and overdose by tracking and monitoring the epidemic and helping states scale up effective programs. CDC also improves patient safety by equipping health care providers with data, tools, and guidance so they can make informed treatment decisions. Learn more at www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose.
Secretary Burwell has made addressing opioid abuse, dependence, and overdose a priority and work is underway within HHS on this important issue. The evidence-based initiative focuses on three promising areas: informing opioid prescribing practices, increasing the use of naloxone, and using Medication-Assisted Treatment to move people out of opioid addiction.
These efforts build on work that began in 2010, when the President released his first National Drug Control Strategy, which emphasized the need for action to address opioid use disorders and overdose, while ensuring that individuals with pain receive safe, effective treatment. The next year, the White House released its national Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Plan to outline goals for addressing prescription drug misuse and overdose. Since then, the Administration has supported and expanded community-based efforts to prevent drug use, pursue “smart on crime” approaches to drug enforcement, improve prescribing practices for pain medication, increase access to treatment, work to reduce overdose deaths, and support the millions of Americans in recovery.
The CDC works 24/7 saving lives and protecting people from health threats to have a more secure nation. Whether these threats are chronic or acute, manmade or natural, human error or deliberate attack, global or domestic, CDC is the U.S. health protection agency.
Park City celebrated the much anticipated grand opening of the new Quicksilver Gondola and Miners Camp Restaurant, making history as the largest ski resort in the United States. Rob Katz, chairman and CEO of Vail Resorts and Bill Rock, chief operating officer of Park City were on hand for the celebration, joining community leaders and resort guests for a ceremonial ribbon cutting and champagne smash in front of Quicksilver.
Park City Mountain Resort, the largest resort in the United States, is located in the heart of Park City, Utah, only a 35-minute drive from Salt Lake City International Airport, bustles with activities year-round with two distinct base areas, nine hotels, thrilling family adventures, and more than two dozen restaurants. In the summer of 2015, Park City completed the largest resort improvement project in the history of American skiing – boasting more than 7,300 acres of terrain, a brand new eight-passenger gondola, new restaurants, and more. More information at http://parkcitymountain.com.
“On this historic day for our company, the debut of the Quicksilver Gondola connecting the two mountains and Miners Camp restaurant brings to life one of the most ambitious capital projects undertaken at any resort in industry history,” said Katz. “Bill Rock and his team have delivered on their promise to create an experience of a lifetime at Park City and we hope all of our guests enjoy everything that this world-class mountain and iconic mountain town have to offer.”
Construction on Quicksilver and Miners Camp began in the summer of 2015 as part of a $50 million improvements campaign to connect Park City and neighboring Canyons Resort. Now, a quick, 8 1/2 minute ride on Quicksilver is all that separates guests from experiencing hundreds of trails across Park City and Canyons Village.
“Park City is one of the most spectacular places on Earth and now, for the first time ever, our guests will have unprecedented access to over 300 trails, 41 lifts and 7,300 acres of skiable terrain across one Park City,” said Rock. “Quicksilver, Miners Camp and the $50 million in capital improvements across the resort will completely transform the guest experience at Park City. We are thrilled to debut these projects in time for the Christmas holiday.”
Miners Camp, located at the base of the Silverlode Lift, replaces the old Snow Hut and offers guests a cozy retreat from the slopes. The new on-mountain restaurant features 500 indoor seats and a fresh menu highlighted by local ingredients, daily specials, handmade flatbread pizzas, Mediterranean dishes and local drafts on tap.
In addition to Quicksilver and Miners Camp, guests will also find additional snowmaking across the resort, two new trails off of Pinecone Ridge and major upgrades to the King Con and Motherlode lifts. All improvement projects will debut this December.
Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the leading global mountain resort operator. The Company’s subsidiaries operate nine world-class mountain resorts and two urban ski areas, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Perisher, Australia; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan. The Company owns and/or manages a collection of casually elegant hotels under the RockResorts brand, as well as the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyo.
For more information on the $50 million resort improvement projects at Park City, click here.
Although you have already bought most of your gifts, it’s never too late to add yt another unique gift for that very special family member or romantic partner. Below you will find some prime examples of gifts that will put a smile on their faces. Happy holidays.
GIFTS FOR THE HOME
A scent is a time capsule. It can invoke our most intimate memories and dreams, and open doors to distant worlds. Curated by an architect specializing in Historic Preservation, Arquiste is a fragrance collection that transports the wearer to evocative moments in history. Meticulously researched using authentic sources and crafted with only the rarest of ingredients, each fragrance, especially the holiday candles, restores the olfactive experience of a particular time and place, allowing both women and men to unlock personal revelations and experience history in a most intimate way.
First, Dark Galleon takes you to the hull of a merchant ship docked in Nagasaki in September of 1620. Surrounded by the dark waters in the pitch-black night, the ship’s precious cargo of rare spices, exotic incense, and rich leather thicken the air with their heady scent. Developed with Nicole Mancini and Rodrigo Flores-Roux, the scent evokes the legendary ship that inspired the new Nanban Eau de Parfum. The woody and leathery scent of the candle features notes of fiery Persian saffron and the finest Spanish leather, balanced with tropical sandalwood, precious Frankincense, and dark cade.
Then, exquisite Art Deco Velvet brings the splendor of The Architect’s Club’s, inspired by the original Mayfair location to life, capturing the feel of the Art Deco movement in 1930. The scent of gin martinis mingle with fine vanilla and blond tobacco smoke, evoking the elegant imprint of the cozy wood-paneled interior of The Fumoir bar at Claridge’s Hotel in London. Developed with Nicole Mancini and Yann Vasnier, the fragrance opens with notes of juniper berry oil, revealing a heart of blond tobacco, vanilla absolute and oakwood. Rich amber finishes the fragrance with a warm, lingering scent.
Finally, journey to the Royal Convent of Jesus Maria with Mexican Baroque. Deep in the heart of Mexico City in 1695, a group of nuns gathers together in the kitchen to concoct a cherished recipe. Blending together rich chocolate and spices in earthenware pots, the Sisters brew hot cocoa rich enough to unleash a sensuous rapture. Developed with Nicole Mancini, Rodrigo Flores-Roux and Yann Vasnier, Mexican Baroque captures the scents that fill the kitchen, blending cocoa absolute, Mexican vanilla, and smoked chilies together with cedar wood and red clay. Each 8.9 oz. / 251 g. candle costs $85 and is available at http://arquiste.com/
NEST FRAGRANCES is well-known for creating exceptional, authentic scents for the home year-round, but the holiday season is a particularly special time for the fragrance house: Over the years, the brand has created extraordinary and memorable home fragrance collections for the holidays like the aptly named HOLIDAY, BIRCHWOOD PINE, and now, HEARTH. Since 2008, the iconic HOLIDAY COLLECTION makes the season sparkle with its blend of traditional and comforting sweet and spicy notes, including pomegranate, Mandarin orange, pine and cinnamon. In 2012, the BIRCHWOOD PINE COLLECTION debuted, bringing indoors the invigorating scent of a majestic winter forest with notes of white pine, fir balsam and birchwood. HEARTH spins a different tale: It captures the aroma of a wintertime fire by combining rich oud wood with frankincense and hints of smoky embers.
Available in three sizes, each HEARTH SCENTED CANDLE is housed in an attractive glass vessel in a rich shade of chocolate-brown and decorated with alternating frosted and festive gold stripes. The HEARTH Reed Diffuser bottle features the same decoration but with clear glass and chocolate-brown-colored solution. NEST Fragrances candles are made with a premium, highly-refined wax formula for maximum scent throw – ideal for entertaining during the holidays. The HEARTH Collection includes (all prices SRP) a Classic Candle, 8.1 Oz. (230 g) for $38; Reed Diffuser, 5.9 Fl. Oz. (175 mL), for $42; 3-Wick Candle, 21.2 Oz. (601 g), for $58; and Votive Candle, 2 Oz. (57 g), for $14.
The HEARTH COLLECTION is available for purchase now at the following luxury specialty department stores (brick-and-mortar and online): Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale’s; and www.NESTFragrances.com.
HOLIDAY 2015 GIFTS FOR THE HOME COOK
Guaranteed to grow shiitakes, Lost Creek Mushroom Farm log kits pop out organic, gourmet mushrooms about every two months for 3-5 years, with bigger and better harvests as they reach their prime. The logs will grow inside like plants and outside in shade. They require soaking in non-chlorinated water every two weeks. “Shocking” them in ice water triggers the mushrooms to grow, and harvest follows 6-10 days later.
Kits come in a range of prices from $18 to $90. Each kit includes one or more hardwood logs such as oak or gum, instructions, and a recipe booklet. Kits with two logs, such as the Ma & Pa Kit with two 10″ logs and the Best Buy with two 14″ logs and soaking trays, can provide a harvest every month by alternating the producing log. The Shiitake Sampler Cookbook with 51 shiitake recipes can be added to any kit for $8.95. Prices include shipping. Logs over 9 inches are guaranteed to grow shiitakes.
Lost Creek Mushroom Farm donates a portion of sales to Mushrooms in Ghana Project, a program of Mushrooms for Well Being Foundation. The project is building a spawn (mushroom seed material) laboratory, enabling more mushroom farmers to grow more mushrooms in West Africa.
Gourmia(TM), a designer and manufacturer of innovative countertop kitchen appliances, has revolutionized cooking prep with its electronic Power Dicer Slicer Plus (model GMS100) that not only slices, shreds, grates, and chops, but also dices. It is the first – and only – household electronic mandoline to include dicing capability and it completely eliminates the need to ever manually do any of these functions ever again, giving you more time outside of the kitchen.
With multiple color-coded, interchangeable stainless-steel blades, the Gourmia Power Dicer Slicer Plus makes prep work easy. It quickly and effortlessly cuts potatoes into French fries, dices vegetables, grates cheese, shreds cabbage for coleslaw, and slices apples for pies. Unlike competitors’ products, the Power Dicer Slicer Plus does away with messy ragged pieces and serves up perfect, uniformly cut pieces every time. Cutting blades include: large dice, fine dice, coarse shred, fine shred, thin slice, and thick slice.
The quality constructed Power Dicer Slicer Plus features single-button operation for ease of use. It is easy to assemble and clean. A direct-serve feeding spout allows contents to be effortlessly transferred or served from its 9-cup container. The machine’s fresh look and sleek design blend in with virtually any kitchen decor. Rubber suction cups on the bottom of the unit prevent it from dancing across countertops while the motor is on. When not being used, all of the items neatly fit inside the container, providing self-contained, space-saving storage. The Gourmia Power Dicer Slicer Plus is available now through www.Amazon.com for $59.99. (Check Amazon for special holiday pricing and it is eligible for Amazon Prime free two day shipping.)
Give a holiday sweet treat with Bauli‘s oven baked and ready-to-eat Mini Pandoro and Panettone. The traditional Italian brand is best known for their Pandoro and Panettone holiday cakes, which are Christmas and New Year’s Eve staples available during the holiday season. Due to their popularity, Bauli launched MINI versions of the products – perfect for gift baskets, stocking stuffers and enjoying on-the-go! You can even use them to make the Bauli Pandoro Christmas Tree Cake, a fun activity to do with the kids this Christmas (See recipe below). Rooted in Verona, Italy, all Bauli products are baked in a REAL oven to ensure superior taste and quality. The individually wrapped Mini Pandoro and Panettone are made with love and naturally leavened dough, making them THE quintessential holiday hostess gift this season…even better when paired with a bottle of wine or prosecco! (Mini Pandoro $1.99; Mini Panettone $1.99)
BAULI PANDORO CHRISTMAS TREE CAKE
4 each Bauli pandoro, cut into cubes
4 cups whipped cream
2 cups maraschino cherries
2 cups Hazelnut chocolate spread
Mint, for garnish
Powdered sugar, for garnish
Lay out pieces of pandoro in a round fashion and fill the circle with more pandoro. Spread a layer of whipped cream and drizzle with hazelnut spread. Lay another layer of pandoro, but this time smaller then the circle before. Continue this process until all pandoro, cream, and hazelnut spread have been used. On the outside edges of the circles, place cherries in a neat pattern. Place mints practically around tree and dust with powdered sugar.
Kitchenware Gift Ideas from KitchenAid are sure to please. Since the launch of its own, non-licensed kitchenware collection in 2013, KitchenAid has been offering high-performance cookware, cast iron, bakeware and kettles designed for everyone from beginner cooks to experienced chefs. And just in time for the holidays, the brand is expanding the collection to include a new cutlery line. Further information about the products detailed below can be found at www.KitchenAid.com/Kitchenware.
COOKWARE, CAST IRON & KETTLES
KitchenAid currently offers eight cookware lines, including a 3-Ply Copper Clad Collection. Not only does its copper exterior add a timeless look to the kitchen, but the 3-layer design of copper, aluminum and interior stainless steel provide optimal heating and durability for cooking. The cookware is conducive to gas, electric and high efficiency induction cooking methods, and is oven safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Individual pieces are available beginning at $99.99; a 10-piece set, retailing for $699.99, includes an 8″ skillet; 10″ skillet; 1.5-Qt. saucepan with lid; 3-Qt. saucepan with lid; 3.5-Qt. sauté pan with lid; and an 8-Qt. stockpot with lid.
Cold days call for comfort foods like grilled cheese and toasted sandwiches, and the KitchenAid® Grill Pan With Panini Press helps deliver delicious results. The 10” x 10” grill pan is designed with raised ridges across the entire surface. Its heavy duty, heat-retaining cast iron design cooks food at high heat and with a crispy finish, similar to results achieved using an outdoor grill. The panini press insert features raised ridges underneath for creating grill marks on both sides of steaks, chicken breasts and other foods. The grill pan and panini press, part of the Professional Cast Iron line, will be available in Empire Red and Onyx Black at a suggested retail price of $199.99.
The KitchenAid® Tea Kettle Collection continues to offer its 2-Qt. models. The kettles feature classic KitchenAid design aesthetic with either an inviting, open C handle, or an elegant, full-sweeping arch handle, in polished stainless steel with comfort grip. Both are induction capable and dishwasher safe, with porcelain exteriors available in a variety of classic and contemporary colors. Available now, the suggested retail price for the C handle kettle is $49.99; suggested retail price for the sweeping arch handle kettle is $89.99.
CUTLERY & BAKEWARE
KitchenAid unveiled two new cutlery sets earlier this year: a 7-piece set and an 11-piece set. The German stainless steel knives undergo a precise ice-hardening treatment to strengthen corrosion resistance and flexibility, resulting in steel blades with long lasting sharpness and better protection against rust. The 7-piece set includes shears, diamond coated knife sharpener, 8” chef knife, 8” bread knife, 5.5” serrated utility knife, 3.5” paring knife and zinc die cast knife block. The 11-piece set includes the same items plus an 8” slicer knife, 7” santoku knife, 6” utility knife and 3” paring peeler. The knives have black handles, and knife blocks are available in Candy Apple Red, Frosted Pearl White, Onyx Black and Sugar Pearl Silver. Suggested retail prices are $799.99 for the 7-piece set and $1,199.99 for the 11-piece set, and will be available this month on www.Amazon.com, and on www.KitchenAid.com. Continue reading
Dennis Davenport of Portland, Ore. Wins Grand Prize for Photo of an American Kestrel at Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge in Washington
Conducted by the National Wildlife Refuge Association, an independent nonprofit that promotes the Refuge System, the Wildlife Refuge Photography Contest highlights the stunning scenery and wildlife found on more than 560 national wildlife refuges. An American kestrel perched on a cattail at Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge in Washington was this year’s grand prize winner in a photography contest seeking to highlight the diverse, natural beauty found in the National Wildlife Refuge System, the world’s largest network of conservation lands and waters. Taken by Dennis Davenport of Portland, Ore., the image depicts the kestrel, the smallest North American falcon, gazing directly at the viewer. For his grand prize winning photo, Davenport will receive a check for $1,000.
“America’s national wildlife refuges are outstanding places to capture the beauty of nature and the wonder of wildlife,” said David Houghton, president of the National Wildlife Refuge Association. “Nature photography is a growing passion on our wildlife refuges. We’re excited to showcase the skills and talents of the photographers who visit our refuges to visually tell the stories of the wildlife and people that make these places special.“
Other top winners in this year’s contest are:
Second place: Yellow-crowned Night-Heron at J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge in Florida, photographed by Craig Goettsch of of Colorado Springs, Colo.
Third place: Harbor seal pup at Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon, photographed by Steve Dimock of Bandon, Ore.
Fourth place: Gulf fritillary at Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge in Texas, photographed by Freddie Beckwith of Pottsboro, Texas.
A complete list this year’s winners and those receiving an honorable mention, along with their images, are featured on the 2015 Refuge Photography Contest homepage at: www.refugeassociation.org/people/photo-contest-2015.
The National Wildlife Refuge System is the world’s premier system of protected public lands, encompassing more than 150 million acres of land and water in every U.S. state and territory, plus more than 418 million acres of national marine monuments. The National Wildlife Refuge Association is the only independent nonprofit that promotes and protects the world’s largest wildlife conservation network: the National Wildlife Refuge System. Learn more at: www.refugeassociation.org.
The contest would not have been possible without the tremendous generosity of the following sponsors: Eagle Optics, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Orvis and Wild Bird Centers.
World’s Preeminent Violinist Recognized For His Exceptional Contributions As A Musician, Teacher, Advocate For Individuals With Special Needs And Dedication To Jewish Values
The Genesis Prize Foundation today announced that world renowned violinist Itzhak Perlman has been selected as the 2016 Genesis Prize Laureate. The Genesis Prize is a $1 million annual award given to individuals who have achieved extraordinary professional success, have made a significant contribution to humanity, and inspire others through their engagement and dedication to the Jewish community and the State of Israel.
The announcement of his Genesis Prize award comes on the heels of Itzhak Perlman’s receipt of the Presidential Medal of Freedom on November 25. President Obama’s announcement noted that Perlman has been the soloist for the musical score in Schindler’s List, which subsequently won an Academy Award for Best Original Score. Two other US presidents – Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton – have previously recognized Perlman, a Warner Music artist, by awarding him the Medal of Liberty and the National Medal of Arts in 1986 and 2000, respectively.
The inaugural Genesis Prize – dubbed by Time magazine as “The Jewish Nobel” – was awarded in 2014 to New York Mayor and one of the world’s leading philanthropists, Michael Bloomberg. Academy-award winning actor, producer and peace activist Michael Douglas received this prestigious award in 2015.
“Itzhak Perlman is the embodiment of everything an ideal Genesis Prize Laureate should be,” said Chairman and Co-Founder of the Genesis Prize, Stan Polovets. “Itzhak has achieved unparalleled professional success, and through his music brings joy to millions of people around the world. A 16 time Grammy award winner, he has been an incredible source of inspiration for individuals with special needs by overcoming tremendous personal challenges after having been severely disabled by polio at age four. And he has given back to society by dedicating virtually all of his free time and significant resources to teaching young talented musicians and to serving as an advocate for individuals with disabilities. We are delighted to have Itzhak as our 2016 Laureate.” (To view Itzhak Perlman’s full biography, visit the Genesis Prize website at www.genesisprize.org/laureates/laureate-2016. ) Continue reading
Nine features will advance to the next round of voting in the Foreign Language Film category for the 88th Academy Awards®. Eighty films had originally been considered in the category.
Foreign Language Film nominations for 2015 are being determined in two phases. The Phase I committee, consisting of several hundred Los Angeles-based Academy members, screened the original submissions in the category between mid-October and December 14. The group’s top six choices, augmented by three additional selections voted by the Academy’s Foreign Language Film Award Executive Committee, constitute the shortlist.
The shortlist will be winnowed down to the category’s five nominees by specially invited committees in New York, Los Angeles and London. They will spend Friday, January 8, through Sunday, January 10, viewing three films each day and then casting their ballots.
The films, listed in alphabetical order by country, are:
Belgium, “The Brand New Testament,” Jaco Van Dormael, director;
Colombia, “Embrace of the Serpent,” Ciro Guerra, director;
Denmark, “A War,” Tobias Lindholm, director;
Finland, “The Fencer,” Klaus Härö, director;
France, “Mustang,” Deniz Gamze Ergüven, director;
Germany, “Labyrinth of Lies,” Giulio Ricciarelli, director;
Hungary, “Son of Saul,” László Nemes, director;
Ireland, “Viva,” Paddy Breathnach, director;
Jordan, “Theeb,” Naji Abu Nowar, director.
The 88th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Thursday, January 14, 2016, at 5:30 a.m. PT at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.
Vigée Le Brun: Woman Artist in Revolutionary France
Exhibition dates: February 15–May 15, 2016
Exhibition Location: Special Exhibition Gallery, first floor, Gallery 199
Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun (1755-1842) is one of the finest 18th-century French painters and among the most important of all women artists. An autodidact with exceptional skills as a portraitist, she achieved success in France and abroad during one of the most eventful, turbulent periods in European history. Vigée Le Brun: Woman Artist in Revolutionary France is the first retrospective and only the second exhibition devoted to this artist in modern times. The 80 works on view at the Metropolitan Museum will be paintings and a few pastels from European and American public and private collections.
The exhibition is organized by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Réunion des Musées Nationaux – Grand Palais, and the National Gallery of Canada, with the exceptional participation of the Château de Versailles.
The exhibition is made possible by the Gail and Parker Gilbert Fund, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, and the Diane W. and James E. Burke Fund. Corporate support provided by Bank of America. Additional support is provided by gifts made in memory of Parker Gilbert.
Born in Paris during the reign of Louis XV, Elisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun was the daughter of a professional pastel portraitist who died when she was 12 years old. Precocious and largely self-taught, in her teens Mademoiselle Vigée, chaperoned by her mother, was already working independently as a portraitist and contributing to the support of her family. It became necessary for her to join the artisanal guild in 1774, and she exhibited publicly for the first time at age 19 at the SALON OF THE ACADÉMIE DE SAINT-LUC.
In 1776 she married the principal art dealer and expert in 18th-century Paris, JEAN BAPTISTE PIERRE LE BRUN, with whom she had a daughter, Julie. Theirs was largely a marriage of convenience, beneficial to both, although his profession at first kept her from being accepted into the prestigious ACADÉMIE ROYALE DE PEINTURE ET DE SCULPTURE. At 23, Vigée Le Brun was summoned to Versailles to paint Marie Antoinette (1755-1793), who was a few months younger than she. The earliest of three full-length life-size portraits of the queen in the exhibition will be Marie Antoinette in Court Dress (1778, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna), which was delivered to her mother, Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, in 1779. The most important painting of the queen, commissioned as a propaganda piece for the monarchy and shown at the Salon of 1787, is Marie Antoinette and Her Children (Musée National des Châteaux de Versailles et de Trianon), in which she is presented as a regal mother with the dauphin and his two siblings.
The art of painting was fostered in France by the ACADÉMIE ROYALE DE PEINTURE ET DE SCULPTURE, established in Paris in 1648 under the leadership of Charles Le Brun (1619–1690). Women were barred from the school of the Académie because the students learned anatomy and the principles of drawing by studying and sketching from the nude male model. The Académie royale also controlled access to the Académie de France in Rome, where young male artists were afforded the opportunity to study the sculpture and monuments of antiquity. Women were afforded only the most limited access to the Salons of the Académie, where members brought their work before connoisseurs, critics, and potential patrons. (Of the 550 members of that organization during its 150-year history, only 14 were women.) Denied entry to this august organization because her husband was a dealer and association with the trade was prohibited, Vigée Le Brun was able to gain access only when Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI intervened.
Vigée Le Brun submitted Peace Bringing Back Abundance (1780, Musée du Louvre, Paris) as her reception piece, becoming one of the Académie’s last four female members, and she exhibited the picture at the Salon of 1783. She flourished, showing close to 40 works in the four Salons to which she had access (1783, 1785, 1787, 1789). Balancing innovation with tradition, she created intimate as well as public portraits, including, for example, the Duchesse de Polignac (1782, Versailles) and Emmanuel de Crussol-Florensac (1787, The Metropolitan Museum of Art). Simply dressed in white with loose, unpowdered hair, several of her female sitters exemplify the move from formality to the newly fashionable mode of sensibility. Vigée Le Brun was remarkable not only for her technical gifts, but for her understanding of and sympathy with her sitters. Continue reading
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that 112 scores from eligible feature-length motion pictures released in 2015 are in contention for nominations in the Original Score category for the 88th Academy Awards®.
To be eligible, the original score must be a substantial body of music that serves as original dramatic underscoring, and must be written specifically for the motion picture by the submitting composer. Scores diluted by the use of tracked themes or other preexisting music, diminished in impact by the predominant use of songs, or assembled from the music of more than one composer shall not be eligible.
The eligible scores along with their composers are listed below, in alphabetical order by film title:
“Adult Beginners,” Marcelo Zarvos, composer
“The Age of Adaline,” Rob Simonsen, composer
“Altered Minds,” Edmund Choi, composer
“Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip,” Mark Mothersbaugh, composer
“Anomalisa,” Carter Burwell, composer
“Ant-Man,” Christophe Beck, composer
“Beasts of No Nation,” Dan Romer, composer
“The Big Short,” Nicholas Britell, composer
“Black Mass,” Tom Holkenborg, composer
“Bridge of Spies,” Thomas Newman, composer
“Brooklyn,” Michael Brook, composer
“Burnt,” Rob Simonsen, composer
“By the Sea,” Gabriel Yared, composer
“Carol,” Carter Burwell, composer
“Cartel Land,” H. Scott Salinas and Jackson Greenberg, composers
“Chi-Raq,” Terence Blanchard, composer
“Cinderella,” Patrick Doyle, composer
“Coming Home,” Qigang Chen, composer
“Concussion,” James Newton Howard, composer
“Creed,” Ludwig Goransson, composer
“The Danish Girl,” Alexandre Desplat, composer
“The Divergent Series: Insurgent,” Joseph Trapanese, composer
“Dukhtar,” Peter Nashel, composer
“The End of the Tour,” Danny Elfman, composer
“Everest,” Dario Marianelli, composer
“Ex Machina,” Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow, composers
“Far from the Madding Crowd,” Craig Armstrong, composer
“Fifty Shades of Grey,” Danny Elfman, composer
“5 Flights Up,” David Newman, composer
“Frame by Frame,” Patrick Jonsson, composer
“Freedom,” James Lavino, composer
“Furious Seven,” Brian Tyler, composer
“The Good Dinosaur,” Mychael Danna and Jeff Danna, composers
“Goosebumps,” Danny Elfman, composer
“Grandma,” Joel P. West, composer
“The Hateful Eight,” Ennio Morricone, composer
“He Named Me Malala,” Thomas Newman, composer
“Hot Pursuit,” Christophe Beck, composer
“Hot Tub Time Machine 2,” Christophe Beck, composer
“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2,” James Newton Howard, composer
“The Hunting Ground,” Miriam Cutler, composer
“I Smile Back,” Zack Ryan, composer
“I’ll See You in My Dreams,” Keegan DeWitt, composer
“In the Heart of the Sea,” Roque Baños, composer
“Inside Out,” Michael Giacchino, composer
“The Intern,” Theodore Shapiro, composer
“It Follows,” Disasterpeace, composer
“Jalam,” Ouesppachan, composer
“Jurassic World,” Michael Giacchino, composer Continue reading
With the next Star Wars epic scheduled to open this Friday, Revell, a worldwide leader in scale plastic model kits since 1945, announces The MASTER SERIES FINE MOLDS ADVANCED SCALE MODEL KITS featuring the iconic Star Wars Millennium Falcon, X-wing Fighter and TIE Fighter vehicles. The 1:48 and 1:72 scale, paint and glue kits feature piece counts up to 900, finished sizes up to 17-1/2″ long x 12″ wide, revised and color enhanced waterslide decals and a level of detail that might convince even Han Solo that he is going into battle in the real thing.
The three Master Series kits are the latest in a series of Star Wars vehicle model kits that have been released by Revell since September as a prelude to the December 18 premiere of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” in movie theaters. The other nine kits are pre-decorated, snap-together models for beginner and intermediate builders. The series includes four SnapTite Build & Play model kits for ages 6+ and five SnapTite® Max models for ages 8+ featuring 39 to 85 pieces each.
The Millennium Falcon model kit- a 904-piece, 1:72 scale kit widely considered to be the gold standard of Millennium Falcon models, packaged with standing and sitting scale characters of Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, Obi-Wan, C-3PO and two Imperial Stormtroopers, an impressive full color 27″ x 18″ paint guide and a display stand. (MSRP $299.99)
The X-wing Fighter model kit – a 141-piece, 1:48 scale kit replicating the Incom T-65 double-wing combat ship, including pilot and droid characters, weathered decals, optional landing gear, and a display base. (MSRP $79.99)
The TIE Fighter model kit – a 43-piece, 1:48 scale kit of the Empire’s distinctive twin hexagon combat vehicle complete with pilot and Imperial officer characters, full cockpit interior detail, and a display base. (MSRP $59.99)
The Millennium Falcon is available at www.revell.com and in hobby stores immediately. The TIE Fighter and X-wing Fighter will be available from the same sources in December for pre-holiday purchase.
Revell offers more than 7,000 different accurately detailed cars, trucks, ships, aircraft, spacecraft and more scale plastic model kits. For more information, visit www.revell.com.
Star Wars and related properties are trademarks and/or copyrights, in the United States and other countries, of Lucasfilm Ltd. And/or its affiliates © & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.