Monday, November 7, 2016

Kathleen "Kathy" Drevik Knoxville on Myrtle Beach

Hi everybody, it's Kathleen "Kathy" Drevik of Knoxville, TN doing a quick post about a much maligned and underrated vacation destination of the Southeast. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Long derided as "The Redneck Riviera" Myrtle Beach can actually be a great destination for a family vacation. The trick is to know where to stay and what to see.

First, Go with a private residence rental. Many hotels in the Myrtle Beach area are long in the tooth, and because their owners often use these private residences, they are (mostly) in better shape. You can find a week long rental of a private beachfront condo for the same price or lower than a local hotel. You get the added benefit of having a full kitchen, saving your family lots of money on lunch and breakfasts, allowing you to splurge on dinner.

Second, you’ll want to seek out attractions that are a bit off the beaten path. Here are some of my favorites:

This is a must see if you are bringing the kids along. The farm is a bit off the beaten path, but it gives kids a chance to see and sometimes interact with a large variety of animal species. It doesn’t hurt that the kids will be tuckered out after all the walking around and the excitement of feeding the animals. That attraction is priced very family friendly and there are plenty of shady places to rest.

This is a place for young and old alike. You’ve got a huge variety of boutiques and stores along with min-golf, an IMAX, and a Ripley’s Aquarium for the young ones.

3. BrookgreenGardens

These gardens feature some of the best displays in the Southeast along with a great venue for special events such as concerts and picnics. They are open from dawn to dusk and sometimes they stay open in the evening for special events. Check out their website for more information.

These are just some of the attractions that can be found off the beaten path in Myrtle Beach. Stay tuned for part 2 coming soon!

~Kathleen “Kathy” Drevik Knoxville

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Kathleen (Kathy) Drevik in Cap Juluca

Hi-I'm Kathleen (Kathy) Drevik of Knoxville Tennessee. Today I'm going to be talking a bit about a very special place-Anguilla. We all know that the Caribbean is beautiful and special place but Anguilla is more special than most. Located across from Saint Maarten, the island is small, but not so small you don’t need a car. There are a number of high-end resorts here (such as the Cuisinart) but the most amazing one has to be Cap Juluca. Located just across the sea from St. Maarten (the French side), in the British West Indies, on a half moon shaped bay, the resort consists of 30 villas. The rooms range from one bedrooms to entire villas with a spectacular entrance that includes a walkway over the pool.
The water is an amazing blue color and you can see all the way to the bottom. The resort has a number of activities that are free to guests such as free snorkeling equipment, paddleboards, floats, small sailboats, windsurfers, and other water sport items. There are a number of trails that take you along the island and give you amazing vistas looking out over the ocean. The way the island is situated, they rarely get hurricanes, but you should check the weather forecast for tropical disturbances before you book your trip.
They have a few restaurants at the resort. There’s Pimms, a fine dining establishment that requires at least a jacket for male diners, and Spice, a 1930s Havana style bat=r with spectacular views of the ocean and sunsets. There is Blue, a beachfront dining place that allows you to go from beach to burger in no time. They also do private beach dinners and room service. The food is absolutely amazing and their seafood (as you can imagine) is some of the freshest you’ll find anywhere. They also do local specialties such as curried goat and jerk chicken.
While not exactly cheap, Cap Juluca will give you memories you cherish for a lifetime.
Kathleen (Kathy) Drevik signing off until next time!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Kathleen Drevik at The San Diego Zoo

Hello, I’m Kathleen Drevik and today I am writing about my travels to the San Diego Zoo. First, a bit of history-The San Diego Zoo was formed after the nineteen fifteen worlds fair where an exhibit of animals from overseas was abandoned by one of the fair’s exhibitors. Founded by HaroldWegeforth, the zoo selected a site on a piece of land in Balboa Park. In an unusual arrangement the city owns the animals and the zoo takes care of the care and feeding of them animals. The animal count grew quickly in those first few years, bolstered by an acquisition of animals from the Wonderland Amusement Park, a park that had gone out of business.
In nineteen twenty-three the zoo enlisted the aid of Frank Buck, a well-known animal researcher, to become the director of the zoo in 1923. Mr. Buck was signed to a three-year contract but soon it was apparent that he and Wegeforth began to butt heads since both were stubborn and strong willed. Despite the three-year contract, Mr. Buck left the zoo after only three months to pursue his passion of animal collecting.
A string of short-lived chief executives followed, but in 1925 Mr. Wegeforth hired Belle Benchley, the former bookkeeper to be the executive secretary of the zoo, a de-facto position of Zoo director. A few years after her promotion Benchley was given the title and formally announced as zoo director, becoming the first female zoo director in the world. She held that distinction until a few years before her retirement in 1953.

In 1975 the zoo founded The Center ForReproduction of Endangered Species. Founded by Kurt Benirschke who as the inaugural director, refined the mission and later renamed it the Institute for Conservation Research.

In my next post, I’m going to go into detail about the various animals and exhibits that can be found at The San Diego Zoo.  I’ll have pictures, too! Stay tuned!

~Kathleen Drevik

Monday, August 8, 2016

Kathleen Drevik Knoxville in South Carolina

I recently had the pleasure of taking a mini vacation to the coast of SouthCarolina. For those of you not familiar with the State of South Carolina, it is one of the most beautiful and accessible coasts on the Atlantic. Rolling sand dunes, abundant wild life and attractions such as state parks, restaurants, and shopping are everywhere.

The relatively humid climate is somewhat mitigated by the breezes off of the ocean if you are near the coast. The areas upstate and inland are slightly less hot and humid; it seems hotter due to the lack of breeze off of the ocean. Upper temperatures in the summer hover around the mid nineties with the overnight temperatures are around the low to mid seventies.  Winter temperatures are much more variable with the coastal areas averaging daytime highs in the sixties and nighttime lows in the forties. Inland, the winter high temperature average is around thirty-two degrees and the nighttime lows are around twenty five degrees.

Precipitation is present all year round with the coastal areas receiving slightly more rain than the inland areas. Snowfall is not that common although the inland areas may see up to an inch a year with some of the coastal areas not recording any snowfall for years at a time. An exception is the mountains in far northwestern South Carolina which average up to twelve inches of snow per year. Tropical storms, cyclones and hurricanes have been known to hit the coast with the most recent being Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

TheHurricane season goes from June 1 to November 30. The most activity occurs from August to October so travelers looking to take a late season vacation must plan their trip accordingly.

This the end of Part1 in part two I will go into the beaches and recreation areas of South Carolina along with the must see sights and places to stay.

-Kathleen Drevik

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Kathleen Drevik of Knoxville-Trip to Denali

Hi, I'm Kathleen Drevik of Knoxville Tennessee and Today, I'm going to share a bit about my trip to Denali National Park in Alaska.

Located in the interior of Alaska, and built around the tallest mountain in North America, it is twenty four thousand five hundred square kilometers (or six million acres) of beauty.  At the lower elevations you will see forests with a mix of tree species. This gives way to tundra at the middle areas, and the higher elevations are mostly rock and snow. There are a number of glaciers in the park, with the largest being the Kahiltna Glacier.
The National Park and Preserve encompasses the Alaskan Mountain Range along with glacier valleys and glaciers running out of the National Park and Preserve. The park and preserve are home to the Forakler river, the Toklat River, and the Mckinley river as well as rolling hills named the Wyoming and Kantishna. On the West side of the park are preserve lands. These areas allow hunting by permit, but in the park, hunting is limited to local residents that are allowed to hunt for food. Eleven miles South of Healy is the entrance to the Park and Preserve. You will find, just inside the entrance a visitors center along with headquarters of the park.
Grizzly bears and Black bears abound in the park along with a large variety of mammals and birds. Moose can be seen around the lakes and other water features and mountain sheep are quite plentiful. Caribou roam through the park and are known to saunter on the roads so be aware when coming around curves in the roadway. The park is also home to a number of smaller mammals such as lynxes, marmots, ground squirrels, beavers, Red foxes, and pikas. These animals are quite wary and are good at hiding so consider yourself lucky if you see one.
Late summer brings many migratory birds to the park including a variety of wheaters and raptors.
If you are looking for a great family vacation that will awe young and old alike, you can’t do any better than Denali.