Family-Friendly Destinations Near + Far

School is about to begin (Can it be that time already?), so now’s the perfect time to have those last quality days with the kiddos. If your kids are preschoolers, plan to make a trip after those older kids are in school and crowds are thin. Here we have a recommendation for you that's near NoCo as well as an exciting kid-friendly event in Texas in late September—fall break, perhaps?


August’s annual Perseid meteor shower is the Northern Hemisphere’s celestial "show of shows" with a consistently high rate of bright meteors, occurring at a time of year when folks can comfortably be outdoors in the early morning hours. My son and I will never forget our first Perseid event back when he was in fourth grade. We gazed in wonder and delight at countless “shooting stars” in every direction. The key is finding a truly dark sky environment, and fortunately for us Coloradans, we have plenty of those. So plan ahead and get your family as far from those city lights as you can, and be prepared for a thrill you too will never forget.

Meteors begin as tiny specks of cosmic debris that enter our atmosphere at high speeds and then vaporize, causing the streaks of light known as “shooting" or "falling stars.” A small particle can be seen for a few hundred miles as a bright streak of light in the sky.

The Perseid meteor shower will reach its maximum rate of activity Aug. 13, usually some 100-150 meteors per hour. The Aug. 15 full moon may block out some of the fainter meteors, but there will be countless bright ones that should shine right through. Some Perseid meteors are expected to be visible from about 10 days prior to and 10 days after Aug. 13.

The best viewing times are typically from midnight to 4 a.m., since the side of the earth closest to the sun attracts more meteors as the planet moves through space.

3 Places to Watch

  1. Rist Canyon, Fort Collins: Less than half an hour from downtown, the canyon is dark and far from light pollution.
  2. Horsetooth Reservoir, Fort Collins: Since not many cars pass by at night, you will enjoy an uninterrupted view of sparkling skies.
  3. Rocky Mountain National Park: A dedicated team of rangers (accompanied by volunteer astronomers) leads a variety of special after-dark programs, including "Astronomy in the Park" and "Stories Behind the Moon and Stars."

And Far…

The Park Place Luxury and Supercar Showcase was launched in 2017 as a celebration of the 30th anniversary of Park Place Dealerships, a 22-location luxury and high-performance vehicle company in the Dallas/Fort Worth region. Specializing in such makes as Mercedes, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Lotus, Maserati, and more, Park Place’s event raises thousands of dollars for various nonprofits. To date, more than $45 million has been raised for nonprofit beneficiaries in Irving, Texas. This year, the recipient will be the Baylor Scott and White Irving Foundation, established by civic leaders as a public charity in 1977 to raise funds for nonprofit healthcare in Irving, Texas.

The 2019 event will take place on Saturday, Sept. 28, on the fairway of the TPC Championship Golf Course of the 400-acre Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas. The Luxury and  Supercar Showcase will exhibit approximately 350 rare vintage, classic, contemporary and modern supercars from regional collectors and car clubs.

In addition, the newest and upcoming editions of all 10 of Park Place’s luxury brands (Bentley, Rolls-Royce, McLaren, Maserati, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lexus and Volvo) will be on Display. Last year, throngs were thrilled by such world-famed automobiles as the 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Continental built for heiress Barbara Woolworth Hutton. The Kids Zone is very popular, a highlight for younger enthusiasts. This section of the Supercar Showcase features an interactive Hot Wheels exhibit and a range of small, driveable toy vehicles.

In the VIP lounge, it is all about the gastronomy and cocktails—and gossiping about the fashions patrons view in the Highlands Park Fashion Show and in the fun Haute Hat Contest. Many attendees, both male and female, sport elegant hats and clothing, a la Kentucky Derby tradition. Hatmakers, such as Milano Hat Factory of Garland, create “fascinators” and fedoras.


5 Cars Not to Miss

  1. 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Continental
  2. Bentley Bentayga V8
  3. Rolls-Royce Cullinan SUV
  4. Range Rover SV Coupe
  5. Porsche Cayenne

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