You may be excused for being skeptical, but spring and summer are on their way, and the new 1996 Washington State Spring/Summer Activity Guide is now available.
The guide includes a statewide calendar of events and gives several ideas for trips and activities, plus lots of useful phone numbers and discounts. For a free copy, call (800) 890-5493.
A summer paleontology field program will be offered this summer at the Egg Mountain area on the eastern slope of the Rockies near Choteau, Mont.
Several levels of classes are offered by the Museum of the Rockies at Montana State University-Bozeman. One-day sessions are designed for families and are offered June 25 and 28. The week-long sessions allow participants to excavate. One two-week session will be offered Aug. 11-21. Minimum age is 10 for one-day sessions, 15 for one-week sessions.
Prices range from $95 for one day to $990 for one week. Advance registration is required.
Free tours of the Egg Mountain site are held daily at 2 p.m. For more information call (406) 994-6618.
Back to nature
It’s not too soon to start thinking about camping, and reservations at some national parks will be easier this year.
A new reservation allows campers to reserve sites up to five months in advance at 12 national parks, including several in California but none in the Northwest.
The parks represented are Acadia, Assateague, Cape Hatteras, Death Valley, Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, Joshua Tree, Rocky Mountain, Sequoia-Kings Canyon, Shenandoah, Whiskeytown and Yosemite.
Reservations can be made by calling a new service, Destinet, at 800-365-2267 (for Yosemite reservations, call 800-436-7275).
Sun Mountain Lodge, overlooking the Methow Valley near Winthrop, has been awarded four stars by the Mobil Travel Guide, an honor shared by only 412 other properties in the United States and Canada. The rating signifies “outstanding - worth a special trip.” For information, call (800) 572-0493 or (509) 996-2211.
The Alexis Hotel, another four-star hotel in Seattle, has recently completed a $5 million expansion and renovation, increasing the number of rooms to 109. It includes 16 executive suites, eight fireplace suites and six spa suites, plus a fitness facility. For information, call (800) 426-7033 or (206) 624-4844.
The Four Seasons Olympic in downtown Seattle has received the highest possible rankings from two groups: five stars from Mobil and five diamonds from AAA.
All about arts
Edwards LaLone Travel in Spokane is organizing a trip to Seattle over the Memorial Day weekend (May 25-27) for people attending the Seattle International Film Festival. The price of $300 per person, based on double occupancy, includes air travel, limousine transfers, two nights’ accommodation and six movie choices. The registration deadline is April 5; call 747-3000 or (800) 288-3788.
Seattle’s sixth annual Fringe Theater Festival (personally, we think the name needs work) runs March 21-31. The oldest celebration of its type in the United States, it features 69 companies in 316 performances, all held in the Broadway district of Capitol Hill.
Performances range from poetry and jazz to experimental theater and more mainstream works like Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest.” For more information, call (206) 325-5446.
Bargains and discounts
Friday Harbor House, on San Juan Island, is offering a variety of springtime packages, based on romance, massage therapy or eagle and whale watching, with prices reflecting a free third night when two nights are purchased. For information, call (360) 378-8455.
March is the last month for Seattle’s annual Super Saver hotel promotion, which features discounts of up to 50 percent on hotel rooms and savings on shopping, dining and visitor attractions. Call (800) 535-7071 or (206) 461-5882.
, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo
MEMO: Send information about travel opportunities around the Pacific Northwest to: Travel Editor, Features Department, The Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210.
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