OldWestNewWest.com: History & Travel Magazine

Feb 25th
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National Park Service Waiving Entrance Fees on Three Weekends

The National Park Service will waive entrance fees on three weekends this summer as a way to encourage visitors to explore these national treasures and make family vacations this year a little more affordable.

The three free admission weekends are June 20-21, July 18-19, and Aug. 15-16, 2009.
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28th Annual Plains Indian Museum Powwow Set for Cody, Wyoming

The 28th annual Plains Indian Museum Powwow takes place Saturday and Sunday, June 20 and 21 at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming and it's one of the best gatherings anywhere in the country.

"It's hard to describe what makes our powwow different," says Rebecca West, curatorial assistant of the Plains Indian Museum at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center, "but we like to think it's a place for families and friends to gather and share their powwow traditions with a larger community, and an eager audience."
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Go take a Hike on National Trails Day

National Trails Day is Saturday, June 6, and it's a great day to get outdoors and either explore one of the West's great historic trails, or even a trail in your own neighborhood.

National Trails Day's roots go back to President Ronald Reagan's 1987 President's Commission on Americans Outdoors. The report recommended that citizens be able to get outdoors and be able to find a trail within 15 minutes of where they live.
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California's 2009 Road Trips Guide Gets Visitors Exploring

California Road Trips 2009, the free annual guide produced by the California Travel and Tourism Commission (CTTC), is now available and the agency is hoping you'll want to use it to explore the Golden State.

California Road Trips 2009 provides detailed driving maps that take readers to some of the best insider spots in California. But readers will find a difference this year - an emphasis on getting out of the car to enjoy those unique locales.
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National Cowboy Museum Readies Annual Chuck Wagon Gathering, Children's Cowboy Festival

The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City will be celebrating the 19th Annual Chuck Wagon Gathering and Children's Cowboy Festival on May 23 and 24, 2009, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

On Memorial Day weekend, authentic chuck wagon crews prepare delicious cowboy favorites for folks to sample, such as biscuits and stew, beans and cobblers.
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Fremont Street Experience Presents "Summer of '69: Vegas or Bust"

Fremont Street Experience takes Las Vegas back 40 years this summer with the "Summer of '69: Vegas or Bust" festival and concert series beginning Memorial Day weekend.

The celebration offers tourists and residents a summer full of free concerts by major iconic bands from 1969, including The Guess Who, Blood Sweat & Tears, Rare Earth, Janis Joplin's Original Band Big Brother & The Holding Company, The Grass Roots, Jefferson Starship, The 5th Dimension, Canned Heat and Three Dog Night.
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Some Arizona State Parks Shift to Five-Day Schedules

Reflecting the current economic downturn that continues to plague Arizona's state parks, the seven-member Parks Board has approved cutbacks and/or reduced days and hours of operation for several popular park facilities.

Currently closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park, Tubac Presidio State Historic Park,
Yuma Territorial Prison State Historic Park, and Yuma Quartermaster Depot State Historic Park.
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Gasoline Expected to Stay Reasonably Priced This Summer.

Despite the sagging economy, motorists may want to take to the West's roadways this summer. The federal government's crystal ball is predicting gasoline prices will stay relatively low.

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) is projecting regular-grade gasoline to average $2.23 a gallon during the April-through-September driving season. The monthly average is likely to peak at $2.30 a gallon. That's still a bargain compared to last summer, when gasoline cost an average of $3.81 a gallon and soared for a time past $4.
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National Park Week Festivities Set for April 18-26

Scavenger hunts, craft demonstrations, puppet shows, artillery displays, and nature hikes are just some of the hundreds of free special events taking place in national parks during National Park Week 2009, celebrated this year from April 18 through 26.

A list of activities for this Presidentially-proclaimed week is available at
www.nps.gov/npweek .
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Holland America Line Plans 14-Day Alaskan Adventurer Cruises

Holland America Line will introduce new 14-day Alaskan Adventurer cruises on its flagship ms Amsterdam in 2010, which will sail roundtrip from Seattle and include a call at Anchorage for the first time.

The 1,380-guest Amsterdam will be the first cruise ship of a major cruise line to call regularly in Anchorage, providing guests with a full day and evening in Alaska's major city. The Amsterdam will also call at Homer and Kodiak, two new and less frequented ports for guests to discover.
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Portland Perks Up Spring With Gift Cards for Early Birds

Portland, Oregon is offering special deals for visiting the city this spring if you book through the Travel Portland Web site
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Southwest Airlines Has Fare Sale on Southwest.com

Southwest Airlines is offering customers nationwide airfares starting as low as $49 one-way. Fares are available for travel Mondays through Thursdays or Saturdays when purchased by April 6, 2009.
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Branson Begins an ‘Ozark Mountain Spring' Celebration

Spring officially begins March 20, and with it Branson, Missouri is offering visitors its ‘Ozark Mountain Spring' celebration with more than 40 special events and festivals in March, April and May.

"Branson's celebrating 50 years of Live Music Shows," said Urban Cowboy and Country Music Legend Mickey Gilley. "In 50 years, Branson has expanded from my favorite country music to rock ‘n' roll, pop, comedy, Broadway, gospel, Big Band, magic shows, acrobats and more. What Branson has done in 50 years is truly remarkable!"
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Laughlin River Stampede Promises Lots of Rodeo Action

The 15th annual Laughlin River Stampede gets underway March 26-29, and the four-day event will feature some of America's best cowboys and cowgirls competing in fast-paced, spine-tingling events for more than $225,000 in prize money.

Set in Laughlin, Nevada, the state's resort town on the Colorado River, the Stampede features plenty of rodeo action, such as barrel racing, bareback and bull riding, and team roping. There will also be an appearance by Miss Rodeo America, rodeo displays, merchandise, crafts and food.
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Arizona's ‘Catus League' Underway with New Dodgers, Indians Stadiums

Cactus League Spring Training is now underway across Greater Phoenix with more teams, more stadiums and more games than ever before. But fans can expect one constant at the ballpark: sunny skies and 80-degree temperatures.

Cactus League baseball, a seasonal rite in Greater Phoenix features 14 teams and more than 200 games. Games began Feb. 25, with action scheduled every day in March.
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Allegiant Air Says Los Angeles Base to Serve 12 Western Cities

Low-cost airline Allegiant Air said it will establish a new base in Los Angeles, offering nonstop jet service from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to 12 small-city markets in the West, beginning May 1. Introductory low fares begin as low as $39 each way (seats are limited, and restrictions apply).
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Economy Forcing Alaska to Roll Out Incredible Travel Deals

The Alaska Travel Industry Association has launched an emergency campaign to heavily market Alaska travel values this winter and spring in hopes of bolstering what is shaping up to be one of the state's slowest travel seasons on record.

Despite Alaska's year-long plans to celebrate its 50th anniversary of statehood in 2009, the association predicts visitation will be off anywhere from 10 to 30 percent during the state's high season - May to September of 2009.
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Mardi Gras is Feb. 24 and That Means It's Time to Party

If it's February, it's time to party in New Orleans, and even a sour economy this year is no party-pooper for Mardi Gras fans.

Parades began Feb. 7, with a variety of extravagant floats and outrageously costumed characters tossing the popular green, purple and gold beads.
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Virgin America to Begin Service to John Wayne Airport

Virgin America, the California-based airline that says it is reinventing domestic air travel, will begin service to Orange County's John Wayne Airport (SNA) from San Francisco beginning on April 30.

Virgin America plans to fly five daily flights from its home base at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to SNA, with low introductory fares starting at $59; some conditions apply. SNA will be the ninth destination airport in the airline's growing network.
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Whale Watching In California's State Parks and Festivals

The annual migration of thousands of gray whales (up to 50 long and 45 tons each) is now underway. It begins in Alaskan and moves south along California's coastline to birthing and breeding waters in Baja California.

From December through March, visitors have the opportunity to view the return of the gray whale, the state's official marine mammal, in a number of prime locations in California State Parks. We have included a listing to make your selection easier.
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