Travel & Tourism
Braley Statement on Southwest Airlines Des Moines Service Announcement PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Travel & Tourism
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Monday, 23 January 2012 13:24

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) released the following statement in response to Southwest Airlines’ announcement that it would convert AirTran operations at Des Moines International Airport to Southwest Airlines service:

“Southwest Airlines’ announcement is good news for Iowa travelers and the Iowa economy.  Southwest Airlines will bring reduced prices and increased competition to the Des Moines airport.  That means a more competitive business environment for Iowa employers and more money in the pockets of consumers.”

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“LAST DINNER ON THE TITANIC” SERVED IN ST. LOUIS TO MARK THE CENTENNIAL OF THE LUXURY LINER PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Travel & Tourism
Written by St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission   
Monday, 23 January 2012 08:32
Recreating Titanic’s final 11-course dinner menu is just one of the special events slated for St. Louis’ Titanic Centennial Weekend, April 13-15, 2012.

ST. LOUIS -- January 19, 2012 -- One hundred years ago this April, a reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch scored one of the biggest stories of the 20th century – the sinking of the H.M.S. Titanic.

St. Louis journalist Carlos Hurd was aboard the Carpathia, the vessel that scooped up Titanic’s lifeboat-clinging survivors. Hurd and his wife Katherine were the first to interview the eyewitnesses to the downing of the “unsinkable” ocean liner. He wrote the world-wide headline story on rolls of toilet paper during the voyage that brought those rescued into New York harbor. Today, the legendary ship continues to make headlines in St. Louis where a weekend of special commemorative events will take place to remember this ever-fascinating piece of history.

Cruise into the Gateway City to experience the history, fashion, food and music of the elegant Edwardian era during St. Louis’ Titanic Centennial Weekend, April 13-15, 2012. For more information, click on http://www.explorestlouis.com/ or www.titanic2012stl.com or call 314-657-5033. Tickets for all events and accommodations are also available through Metrotix at 314-534-1111 or www.metrotix.com.

On Friday, April 13, the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park serves up an Edwardian Champagne Reception prior to a screening of the classic 1958 Titanic film, “A Night to Remember.” Guests also will view Titanic-related artifacts from the Museum’s collection.

The highlight of the weekend takes place at the Fabulous Fox Theatre on Saturday, April 14. The Fox’s executive chef Stephen Proctor along with the culinary teaching staff at L’Ecole Culiniare will recreate the original First Class menu served to Titanic guests on the actual 100th anniversary of the last dinner on the ship. The historic menu was meticulously researched to authentically recreate the sumptuous eleven-course meal and accompanying wines. The Titanic-sized menu includes oysters a la Russe, poached salmon, filet mignon, chicken Lyonnaise, roasted squab and Waldorf pudding.

Diners will have the opportunity to experience A Taste of History: Last Dinner on the Titanic while seated on the stage at St. Louis’ Fabulous Fox Theatre. The evening is black tie. Dinner guests are encouraged to wear vintage attire (white tie for men). Upon arrival, guests will receive a boarding pass and envelope containing the name and biography of an actual first-class passenger from the Titanic. Guests can be assured that the only ice afloat at the Fox this evening will be found in drinking glasses.

Prior to dinner, a period-style cocktail reception featuring live music popular during 1912 will fill the Fox Theatre’s elaborate Grand Lobby. Between courses, guests will be entertained with incredible stories about the Titanic told by actors portraying passengers and crew who had been aboard the fateful ship including Missouri’s-own “Unsinkable” Molly Brown. Proceeds from the evening benefit the Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation, a not-for-profit which fosters and promotes the performing arts in the St. Louis area.

Those who survive the Saturday evening soiree can partake in a special champagne brunch at the Piper Palm House, the oldest standing greenhouse west of the Mississippi River. Located in St. Louis’ Victorian-designed Tower Grove Park, the Palm House’s distinctive architecture, soaring ceiling, stately windows and exotic plants, resemble the Titanic’s Verandah Café. The brunch will be recreated from a Titanic first class breakfast menu. The buffet service meal features, along with other delicacies, smoked salmon, lamb chops, sirloin steak, prepared-to-order omelets, fruits and baked goods.

The three events range in price from $10 to $500, so everyone can “step back in time” and experience the history, fashion, food and music of the elegant Edwardian Era. A special St. Louis Titanic Weekend Travel Package is available at the newly restored Cheshire, a landmark hotel property that embodies the charm and authenticity of a traditional British inn with all the modern conveniences of today. The $389 hotel package includes deluxe accommodation for two nights (Friday and Saturday/double occupancy), an English continental breakfast on Saturday, complimentary high tea on Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m., and round-trip transportation to the events at the Missouri History Museum, The Fox Theatre and the Piper Palm House.

True Titanic buffs will want to tour historic Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis. St. Louisan Elizabeth McMillan Madill Robert was returning home from a year-long European tour and lodging in Cabin B-3 aboard the Titanic. She, her daughter Georgette Madill, niece Elizabeth Allen and maid Emilie Kreuchen were all rescued from Lifeboat 2. Mrs. Madill Roberts died in 1955 and is buried on the Madill family lot. Also resting at Bellefontaine are Carlos and Katherine Hurd who were traveling on the Carpathia, the White Star Line vessel that rescued Titanic lifeboat passengers. Hurd enlisted his wife to help him gather interviews for the news story of the century. Stop by the Bellefontaine Cemetery office at 4847 West Florissant Avenue for a complimentary map to these gravesites and those of hundreds of notable persons including explorer William Clark, Civil War officers, beer barons, literary personalities and more.  Information also is found at www.bellefontainecemetery.org.

Follow St. Louis on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest information on what's happening in the Gateway City. www.facebook.com/ExploreStLouis; http://twitter.com/explorestlouis

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Join us for Winter Bike to Work Day, Jan. 20 PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Travel & Tourism
Written by Ted Villaire   
Thursday, 19 January 2012 08:43

On Friday, Jan. 20, warm up with Caribou coffee, tea and hot chocolate from 6:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Daley Plaza in Chicago for Winter Bike to Work Day.

The first 50 bike commuters who come by the event can choose from either a free bike light or a free balaclava. People can also enter a raffle for a folding bike.

Winter Bike to Work Day, organized by the Active Transportation Alliance, commemorates the coldest day in Chicago history--Jan. 20, 1985--when the official temperature at O'Hare International Airport was 27 degrees below zero.

Jan. 20 also marks the opening of registration for one of the best bicycle rides in the nation, MB Financial Bank Bike the Drive. Get a jump on your summer by signing up for this world-class bike ride, to be held on May 27. Save $10 when you sign up for this Active Transportation Alliance fundraiser between Jan. 20 and Feb. 6 at www.bikethedrive.org.

The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. The Active Transportation Alliance is North America's largest transportation advocacy organization, supported by nearly 6,000 members, 1,000 volunteers and 40 full-time staff. For more information on the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312.427.3325.  
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Join us for Winter Bike to Work Day, Jan. 20 PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Travel & Tourism
Written by Ted Villaire   
Thursday, 19 January 2012 08:43

On Friday, Jan. 20, warm up with Caribou coffee, tea and hot chocolate from 6:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Daley Plaza in Chicago for Winter Bike to Work Day.

The first 50 bike commuters who come by the event can choose from either a free bike light or a free balaclava. People can also enter a raffle for a folding bike.

Winter Bike to Work Day, organized by the Active Transportation Alliance, commemorates the coldest day in Chicago history--Jan. 20, 1985--when the official temperature at O'Hare International Airport was 27 degrees below zero.

Jan. 20 also marks the opening of registration for one of the best bicycle rides in the nation, MB Financial Bank Bike the Drive. Get a jump on your summer by signing up for this world-class bike ride, to be held on May 27. Save $10 when you sign up for this Active Transportation Alliance fundraiser between Jan. 20 and Feb. 6 at www.bikethedrive.org.

The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. The Active Transportation Alliance is North America's largest transportation advocacy organization, supported by nearly 6,000 members, 1,000 volunteers and 40 full-time staff. For more information on the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312.427.3325.  
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Governor Quinn Announces $3 Million Investment in Rockford's New Multi-Modal Station PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Travel & Tourism
Written by Nafia Khan   
Wednesday, 18 January 2012 09:54

New Rockford Station and Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque Rail Corridor Expected to Support Nearly 700 Jobs

ROCKFORD – January 17, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $3 million investment to develop a new multi-modal station in Rockford just south of the downtown area. The Illinois Jobs Now! capital plan funding to design and engineer the new facility is in addition to the $60 million allocated to construct the Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque rail corridor. The two projects together are expected to support nearly 700 jobs, and bring rail access back to a part of the state that has not seen service in 30 years.

“Investing in Rockford is good for Illinois," Governor Quinn said. "Not only will we create a new station and Amtrak service, we'll create new jobs and attract more economic development to the Rockford area. Illinois residents will have additional travel options and reduced travel times from Rockford to the Chicago area and to western parts of our state."

The total cost of the new multi-modal station is expected to be approximately $12 million, including design and engineering. The Illinois Department of Transportation and City of Rockford will work to obtain the additional funds to move construction of the project forward. Construction is expected to begin in late 2012 on the site of the former Amtrak station in Rockford.

“This is great news for Illinois. Under the leadership of Governor Quinn, the grant allocated for this project is expected to provide easy access for Amtrak passengers to and from the Rockford metropolitan area,” Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider said. “The new facility also will encourage the public to use transit as a mode of transportation and expand community access.”

The new station, which will serve Amtrak's new Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque corridor, replaces a dilapidated structure that the city of Rockford demolished at its own expense last year.  The facility will support both passenger rail and public transit, which will improve accessibility and air quality by reducing vehicle emissions.

The Chicago-Rockford-Dubuque corridor is planned to carry one round-trip per day with planned stops in South Elgin, Genoa, Rockford, Freeport and Galena. Construction on the new facility and corridor is expected to be complete by the end of 2014.

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