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Travel and Leisure News - Press Releases - December 16, 2013


A three day celebration of the music of the 1920s and '30s, Monterey’s Jazz Bash by the Bay
Monterey, California - The Jazz Bash by the Bay has been celebrating since 1980 the music of the ‘20s and 30s, one of the most creative and magical periods in the history of American music. The festival brings together the many colorful forms of early jazz: traditional jazz, swing, gypsy jazz, ragtime, blues, and big bands. Eight ballrooms and cabaret venues under one roof. Eight world-class guest artists, 17 featured bands and three youth bands will take to the stage during the 34th annual JazzAge Monterey’s Jazz Bash by the Bay, March 7, 8, and 9, 2014. Some of the performers include Swingin’ by the Bay, ClickTrax, We3 featuring Bob Draga, Jeff Barnhart and Danny Coots. All this music will happen at the Portola Hotel & Spa and the Monterey Conference Center, 2 Portola Plaza, Monterey. Festival hours are 11:00am to 11:30pm, Friday, March 7; 10:00am to 11:30pm, Saturday, March 8; and 9:00am to 4:30pm on Sunday, March 9.  All-Event Badges are $105 prior to March 1, 2014. March 1 to 7, $115; day badges are $45 for Friday, $60 for Saturday and $45 for Sunday. Children under 13 are admitted free with an adult; high school students are also free. Purchases badges online or call 888-349-6879. Information and performance schedules at
Covina Downtown Merchants Association to hold Winter Wonderland December Events December 16 through 23
Covina, CA - Thought you would never see snow in Southern California?  The sidewalks of downtown Covina will be filled with the fluffy white stuff the week before Christmas. The Covina Downtown Merchants Association will be making it snow twice nightly, beginning at 6 p.m. on Dec. 16 through Dec. 23. Strolling carolers and the opportunity to have your photo taken with Santa are just some of the festivities planned. Start off the holiday season by joining in the ever-popular Covina Charity Wine Walk, which begins at 5 p.m. on Dec. 14. All proceeds from the event go to local charities. You receive 12 pours for your $10 ticket, available from participating merchants. Covina downtown merchants and restaurants will be staying open late and offering special holiday discounts. For a complete list of participants and more details, see
San Francisco's Holiday Season Never Looked Brighter…and it all Starts Along the City's Waterfront
San Francisco, California - San Francisco is renowned for celebration on a grand scale and the coming holiday season in the city-by-the-bay will be decked out in magical tradition this year.  It all starts where this town of holiday lights meets the revitalized Waterfront….and the Hyatt Regency San Francisco sits center stage with its virtual, over-sized “snow globe.” Promising daily snowfall in its Guinness Book of World Records largest lobby, the hotel is San Francisco’s home for the holidays.  The Holiday Destination Room Package features all the benefits of the hotel’s holiday amusements as well as all the nearby festivities. For reservations and information, visit or call (800) 233-1234.
Celebrate the Holidays in Irvine, California, with Special Hotel Rates & More
Irvine, California - Irvine hotels invite visitors to experience all of the holiday happenings in the center of Orange County with special offers including complimentary breakfast and late checkout, along with gift cards and shopping certificates. Irvine’s family-friendly holiday activities, events, and special hotel offers, along with the destination’s close proximity to all of Orange County make it an ideal destination for visitors to celebrate the holiday season. For a complete listing of holiday events and hotel specials, visit
The Symphonic Wind Ensemble of Concordia University Wisconsin's Southeastern Florida Tour, January 15-21, 2014
Mequon, Wisconsin - The internationally acclaimed 50 member Symphonic Wind Ensemble from Concordia University Wisconsin will be appearing in concert as it tours in the southeast Florida region in January 2014. The ensemble has gained an enviable reputation as one of the leading instrumental ensembles in the Lutheran educational systems. The group has recently performed critically acclaimed tours in 2012 and 2013 to Italy and northern California respectively. The 2014 tour will promote a new-release CD recording (available as either hardcopy or download) from its recent repertoire. The 2014 repertoire includes compositions by Joseph Wilcox Jenkins, George Gershwin, Gustav Holst, J. Eric Schmidt, Norman Dello Joio and Johann Sebastian Bach. The group’s music director and conductor is Dr. Louis A. Menchaca.  All concerts will include a freewill offering. Seating is on a first come, first serve basis. For more information on the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, visit For more information on Concordia University Wisconsin, contact the university at 262-243-4405 or visit their Web site at  
Celebrate Winter & Spring with the South Florida Symphony Orchestra
Fort Lauderdale, Florida - Music fans will want to join the South Florida Symphony Orchestra  for a spectacular season of concerts and events from January to March, 2014.  The South Florida Symphony Orchestra presents a Masterworks Concert Series throughout South Florida, performing at four different venues: Tennessee Williams Theatre (Key West), Broward Center for the Performing Arts (Fort Lauderdale), Aventura Arts & Cultural Center, and Delray Beach Center for the Arts.   Under the music direction of Maestra Sebrina Maria Alfonso, the South Florida Symphony will perform works by such composers as Prokofiev, Liszt, Mozart, Schumann, Shostakovich, and Ellen Zwilich, the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music.  Eminent classical artists Christopher Taylor and Jeffrey Biegel are featured soloists.  After attending a performance in November 2013, Robert Gannon wrote, “The orchestra is as good as any I have heard in America or Europe - wonderful sheen from the strings, incisive playing from the brass and liquid woodwind sounds” (Sun-Sentinel).  For information on these concerts, call 954-522-8445 or visit
Florida's Naples Botanical Garden Brightens Up the Holidays with Sparkling 'Night Lights' Event
Naples, Florida - Thousands of twinkling lights, glowing orbs, and sparkling décor illuminate one of Naples’ most popular outdoor venues this December. Naples Botanical Garden announces its annual Night Lights the evenings of December 18 – 23, December 26 – 30, and January 2-5 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Award-winning songwriter Julie Patchouli and master guitarist Bruce Hecksel will perform acoustical arrangements featuring their famous “New American Folk” music. Admission is $7 for adult Garden Members and $15 for adult non-Garden members.  Admission is $3 for Garden Member children (ages 4 – 14), $5 for non-Garden member children.  Children 3 and under are free.
Kahilu Theatre presents its first musical in over 20 years, Kamuela, Hawaii
Kamuela, Hawaii - The Kahilu Theatre presents its own New Year Musical on Saturday, January 11 at 7pm and Sunday, January 12 at 2pm.  The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a hit musical comedy about a fictional spelling bee set in Putnam Valley Middle School. The Broadway production of Spelling Bee was so successful, with six Tony Awards, that it has become a favorite with community productions. Six quirky adolescents compete in the Bee, which is run by three equally-quirky grown-ups – creating a charming and hilarious tale about over-achievers of all ages. For both performances, tickets are $10, $15, $20 and $25, with discounts available to Kahilu Theatre members, available in advance from the Theatre’s new website  Public can also drop in at the theatre or call the box office from 9am to 12noon, at (808) 885-6868. Community groups, performers and directors interested in presenting their work at Kahilu Theatre should contact Artistic Director Tim Bostock at 382-3290 or at
Catch the holiday spirit in Galena, Illinois
Galena, Illinois - Enjoy the magic and celebration of cherished traditions that will make memories for you and yours for years to come. Chestnuts roasting over an open fire. Carolers. The romantic glow of a town filled with luminaria. Snow. And everyone enjoying simple pleasures. Step back into time and into a small town and find where the peace, romance and love shared in the season abounds. Holiday celebrations begin November 1 and span through January 1. For a complete listing of events, visit:
Step Back into a 1950s Christmas at the Park Forest House Museum
Park Forest, IL - Take a break from the hustle and bustle of 21st Century holiday preparations to spend some time basking in holiday nostalgia at the Park Forest House Museum, from December 1 through January 2. The 1950s Park Forest House Museum, at 141 Forest Blvd, Park Forest, Illinois, invites you to "Step Back Into a 1950s Christmas." Decorations are in every room, including a forest green, aluminum, rotating tree made by the C. Sincere Company, Gurley Candles and Rosbro figurines. Dolls, toys, and games bring back memories to share. The museum is open Wednesdays and Saturdays 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; and by appointment. Admission for December is adults $3.00; 12 and under free.  Operated by the Park Forest Historical Society. Details at


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