Vacationing in Your Own Backyard
By Barbara Wexler

There are so many things to do at a regional level. You can go to baseball games (many AAA teams are located in smaller communities and get you close to the action) or spend the afternoon trout fishing. You can go to concerts in the park or visit an art exhibit. Two great Web sites to consider going to are http://geocities.yahoo.com/home or www.digitalcity.com. These are both excellent places to find out what is happening in your community.

One excellent way to navigate a strange city is with City Pass (www.citypass.com). This terrific bargain is available in Boston, New York City, Seattle, Chicago, Hollywood, San Francisco and Philadelphia. Some cities offer five attractions and others offer seven. Prices range from $28.50 (Philadelphia) to $59.00 (Hollywood). Prices are less for seniors and children. You have on average nine days to complete your visit (some cities offer more time) and you can visit each attraction once.

Don’t forget to visit the amusement parks that are all over the country. Business in these parks has really fallen off since last year, so many are offering excellent prices especially for residents of the area.

Don’t forget to check your local AAA office or Chamber of Commerce for more ideas. Your National Park Service (www.nps.gov) is also an excellent resource. An annual National Parks Pass costs only $50 and gets you into all the parks across the country.

Wherever you look, you’ll find wonderful ways to explore and discover your own backyard.

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Barbara Wexler is the mother of 10-year-old twin boys Dillon and Samuel, her greatest and most joyful accomplishment. In addition to being a freelance journalist, she is a substitute teacher for the Conejo Valley Unified School District.