Bourbon Launch of New American Countess

A new royal riverboat is now cruising America’s rivers. The American Countess was christened in New Orleans on March 21 and is now on her way for an eight-day journey to Memphis. “As we celebrate the grand debut of the American Countess, I could not be more appreciative of the incredible team that made it possible,” John Waggoner, founder and CEO of American Queen Steamboat Company, said in a news release. The fourth boat to join the American …

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Guest House at Graceland is fit for a ‘King’

When my plane landed at Memphis airport, I called The Guest House at Graceland to request a complimentary shuttle to my accommodations. When I asked the hotel receptionist how I would recognize my ride, she just laughed. “Oh, you will know it right away,” she said. “Don’t worry about that.” How right she was! A few minutes later, a sleek blue-and-gold shuttle arrived with huge likenesses of Elvis on the sides and back. I didn’t even need …

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Expedition cruise to Alaska on UnCruise’s Wilderness Explorer

We seemed plunked down in a different world.  It looked like something from the depths of history. Or maybe from planets beyond our orb. Great shards of ice glistened like diamonds in deep sapphire waters. Tidewater glaciers swept like rivers of ice down massive mountain valleys.  Mountains, some as high as 15,000 feet, rose straight out of the ocean. Snow-draped peaks towered over sparkling fiords. “It feels like you are going back in time, back to the …

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Magical expedition cruise circumnavigates Iceland

The Land of Fire and Ice is no place for sissies. Life on this frozen rugged island in the middle of an ocean has not be easy with volcanoes, glaciers, deforestation, months of 24-hour daylight followed by months of endless night. But Icelanders are friendly and proud to share the treasures of their country. My Ocean Diamond 10-day circumnavigation cruise around Iceland, starting and ending in Reykjavik, was the perfect way to see this incredible country. Iceland …

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Santa Rides New Roller Coaster on Carnival Mardi Gras

Yes, Virginia, there is a roller coaster on a cruise ship. And Santa Claus just rode it. Taking a break from his pre-Christmas gift making, Santa ventured down to Finland to take a test run on BOLT, the first-ever roller coaster at sea aboard Carnival Cruise Line’s new Mardi Gras. The ship is being delivered at the Meyer Turku shipyard later this week. With enthusiastic shrieks of delight and a few hearty “ho-ho-ho’s: echoing throughout the shipyard, Santa zipped …

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Gaudí designs ‘gaudy’ bachelor pad in seaside Spain

When I was a little girl, one of my favorite dresses had a pattern of blue poodle dogs with golden leashes surrounded by a smattering of pink hearts. I thought it was beautiful. One of my elderly neighbors said it was “quite gaudy.” To me, that was a compliment. Figured it was just another way of describing my twirly dress as pretty. Mom told me the truth. But I still figured it was a different way of …

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Susan B. Anthony Museum Honors Woman Who Fought for Right to Vote

When my Grandma Georgie was born on Nov. 3, 1902, women didn’t have the right to vote. Seems hard to believe. When she did gain that right, Grandma Georgie would march to our small town Ohio polling place every election day. She was determined to exercise that hard-won right to vote. As a child, I would jump rope with my sisters to a rhyme but I didn’t know what it meant. “In came the doctor. In came …

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Love Boat Legacy

One of my sister Elaine’s favorite television shows was the “Love Boat,” the 1970s series that helped make Princess Cruises a household name. Airing on ABC from 1977 to 1986, “Love Boat” was set on the Pacific Princess cruise ship. So Elaine jumped at the chance when I suggested we cruise on the Regal Princess. Our weeklong cruise would go round-trip from Ft. Lauderdale in Florida to Princess Cays, St. Thomas and St. Maarten in the Caribbean …

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Celebrity Equinox cruise a happy 2020 memory

Andrew Thompson slipped off his sandals and scrunched his toes in the luxuriant grass. “We don’t have this at home yet,” the Michigan man said. “It’s still winter so this green grass is quite a treat. Never expected to find this here.” Wearing eye protection, Eleanor McCarthy gently turned the hot glass figure of a fish she was creating. Under the careful direction of instructor Justin Lewis, the Florida woman said she was crafting her own souvenir …

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American Cruise Lines adds personalized coaches for passenger comfort and safety

Here comes the American Cruise Lines coach rolling down the road. The road? Yep, the popular riverboat line has added personalized private coaches for the convenience and safety of passengers. It certainly is easy for American Cruise Lines passengers to identify their special bus when it pulls up. The new sanitized cruise coach has the American Cruise Lines logo with the red, white and blue stars and stripes and the words “Cruise Close to Home.” “All American …

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