Big Bend: Historical and Cultural Travel Adventures Abound
It's well known that SW Texas' Big Bend region offers big perks for adventure travelers who enjoy hiking and biking the Park's vast wilderness. The Rio Grande River has inspired exploration for hundreds of years. What is less known is the area's rich historic sights and stories that provide a fascinating glimpse of days gone by. While there are dozens of off-the-beaten-path places to investigate, obvious ones come to mind immediately and both are easily accessible from Forever Resorts' Chisos Mountains Lodge or Big Bend Resort and Adventures.

Plan to visit the Park's Castolon region and Santa Elena Canyon. Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive is spectacular and delivers you to a 1901 village site with a history told in outcroppings, old machinery and artifacts housed in a trading post, post office and country store. A Cavalry compound and barracks can be toured—interesting remains of efforts to protect the US against Pancho Villa's border raids. The 5-hour Sana Elena Loop Tour hosted by Big Bend Overland Tours might be the way to go? Call 432-371-2218 or 800-848-2363 for info/reservations.

The other site everyone in the family will enjoy is the quirky town of Terlingua. From the early 1900's quicksilver mines spawned growth from Study Butte to Terlingua that eventually reached 1,500+ residents. Mining operations could not be sustained, however, and today Terlingua is a landmark ghost town like none other. Visitors are welcome to drive its well-worn streets, stroll through its historic cemetery and then cool off with a beverage at the town's famous Starlight Theater or indulge a fun stop at the adjacent Terlingua Trading Post and Bookstore. Best to Make lodging reservations in advance and plan to stay a few days in order to see all that Big Bend has to offer—this is no place you want to rush through! Chisos Mountains Lodge and Big Bend Resort and Adventures: 877-386-4383.


Greg Davis, General Manager at Mammoth Cave Hotel in Mammoth Cave National Park. After 37 years in the hospitality industry, he was awarded the 2010 Garner B. Hanson Hotelier of the Year Award from the Kentucky Hotel & Lodging Association!
 
By Pass Bridge Opens at Hoover Dam
You have, by now, probably heard the hoopla around the completion and mid-October dedication ceremonies of the Mike O'Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge at Hoover Dam. Opening to automobile traffic this month, the bridge is as much a modern engineering marvel today as the Hoover Dam was when it opened 75 years ago. The event was heralded across the country with front-page articles featured in many newspapers, radio broadcasts and television coverage.

Thousand of people and many dignitaries gathered on Saturday, October 16, 2010 to celebrate the completion of the longest single-span concrete arch bridge in the Western Hemisphere. It rests on the tallest pre cast concrete columns ever constructed. The bridge is a welcome alternate route for many who travel between Arizona and Nevada on US 93 and who regularly experience traffic delays traveling over Hoover Dam. It is expected that 17,000 cars/trucks per day will utilize this "shortcut" and this alone will help alleviate the crush of people and traffic on the Dam, making it easier for both tourists and motorists to go about their business.

The folks at Black Canyon River Adventures (BCRA) are some of the most excited people in the bi-state area to have this new American landmark come on line. For several years the BCRA sales team and raft guides have been touting the wonder of seeing this magnificent structure under construction from the raft's vantage point. Now that the Callaghan-Tillman Memorial Bridge is a reality, BCRA staff expects sightseers from around the globe to take advantage of the opportunity. Rod Taylor, Regional Vice President at Forever Resorts, is anticipating an increase in tours. "We're in a position, literally, to share our excitement—in fact, the nation's excitement—with visitors from near and far. A great tour just got greater. We've got Hoover Dam, the Memorial Bridge, the Colorado River, and the Black Canyon to showoff. If you're in the adventure travel business, it doesn't get much better than this! And what better way to see this marvel of marvels than from a comfortable raft seat? You can still make time to drive the bridge, even walk across the bridge. But nothing will compare to seeing it from the ground up."

Fittingly, the Bridge is named for two veteran heroes from the newly conjoined states of Nevada and Arizona: former Nevada Governor Mike O'Callaghan and former ASU and Arizona Cardinals NFL football star Pat Tillman, who was killed in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom by friendly fire in April 2004. O'Callaghan was a decorated Korean War veteran and longtime executive editor of the Las Vegas Sun and the honor is befitting the popularity he enjoyed as Nevada's governor from 1971-1979.

If you haven't already planned your next vacation to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area to enjoy the splendors of Las Vegas, the quaint history of Boulder City, a tour of Hoover Dam (which, of course, is still available) or water sports on Lake Mead, then an engineering feat of this magnitude might tempt you. There's amazing information on line to entice you; stats that are hard for mere mortals to fathom and construction photographs that will make you appreciate the safety of your desk job. This monumental bridge exemplifies a centuries old American "can do" work ethic and is a tribute to human accomplishments on a grand scale. You have to see it to believe it!

Happy Holidays—It's a Wrap.
Just a quick reminder that it's time to book your holiday Christmas parties. Whether you're planning an intimate get together with your family or friends, your annual office party, or a New Year's Eve extravaganza, Forever Resorts' meetings experts are ready to "wrap up all the details" for you. Click on a property below to be connected to a party planner who will make your Holiday bells jingle. We make Holidays happen!

 

What's to DISCOVER?
Just for the fun of it, each month Discover Forever will feature a quiz related to Forever Resorts' destinations and/or properties. All entries with the correct answers will be collected and identified as finalists each month. Then, on December 31, 2010 one finalist will be selected at random to win a Canon PowerShot A3100 IS Digital Camera and Canon SELPHY CP780 Compact Photo Printer.

You have two weeks from the time DISCOVER FOREVER is sent to cast your vote. No purchase is necessary to enter. Good luck. Hint: Answers can be found at www.Travel-Forever.com and/or www.ForeverResorts.com.

Q: Just in time for Halloween, which bat (listed below) are you LEAST likely to see while visiting the Big Bend area because it is endangered and only visits seasonally?

Answer to September's quiz:
At the onset, how many separate construction units were created in order to manage construction along proposed Blue Ridge Parkway? Click here to find the answer.