30 09 17

This article was originally published on September 25, 2017 on Master NAVI

Many East Coast dwellers have discovered the joys of the long weekend trip to Richmond, Virginia, already. If you are looking to join their ranks, look over this list of great attractions to visit while in the area.

Edgar Allen Poe Museum

Though the great American poet and author Edgar Allen Poe was born in Boston and died in Baltimore, he lived a portion of his life in Virginia, first as an orphaned child taken in by relatives and then as a student. Since Richmond was the setting for much of Poe’s childhood, it only makes sense that a memorial society would build his museum there. Housed in Richmond’s oldest building in the historic district, easy to visit from many hotels, and containing a collection of Poe’s letters and other memorabilia, the gothic charm of the museum is a treasure to fans of the author and historic architecture alike.

Hollywood Cemetery

The Hollywood Cemetery, named after the lines of nearby holly trees and not the film industry, sits in Oregon Hill, convenient to several fine hotels. The plot of land is the final resting place of many important figures in Southern history, like Jefferson Davis and President James Monroe. With a relatively large number of important graves for historical figures, the cemetery is a frequent destination for college students interested in the past or in the many legends surrounding the place.

Virginia State Capitol

The capitol building for Virginia is located in Richmond and is recognized throughout the United States as an official National Historic Landmark. Situated in a beautiful yet convenient capitol district, the building is open for public tours every day, with both self-guided and professionally managed walkthroughs available. Several monuments and parks are convenient to the building as well, helping you and your family make a day of exploring the environs.

Richmond Coliseum

The Richmond Coliseum is one of the region’s preeminent venues for concerts and other large-scale public performances. Home to the local Arena Pro football franchise the Richmond Roughriders, the Coliseum is near downtown, with many lodgings nearby making a visit easy. Events could include national touring sports, big-name concert acts, comedy acts, racing, and more. Be sure to check the calendar for the dates you plan to visit so you can get tickets for anything that sounds interesting.

The Valentine

Richmond is a city with a rich history that predates the formation of the United States, and the Valentine is the place to go to soak in that history and learn all you can about the place. Formed over a century ago, the Valentine has one of the most extensive collections of historical artifacts and informational displays on Richmond in the world. With great accommodations nearby and a low entrance fee, the Valentine is a must for history buffs.

With so many things to do, the danger in Richmond is clearly not finding enough to do but in finding enough time to do it all. Book your trip to this national treasure today.


29 09 17

This article was originally published on Rocket Beach on September 25, 2017

If you’re planning a trip to Pittsburgh and wondering where to eat, you have an incredible number of options. This former steel mill city is now home to a booming dining scene that offers everything from New American to international cuisine. During your next trip to the Steel City, make sure you check out these best restaurants.

The Capital Grille

If you find yourself staying in downtown Pittsburgh, plan one of your dinners at The Capital Grille. This upscale steakhouse serves up fresh seafood and dry aged steaks in a classic and refined setting. Start your dinner off with cast iron garlic shrimp or steak tartare. For your main course, consider the bone-in Kona-crusted New York strip steak with shallot butter or the pan-seared sea scallops with wild mushroom risotto. If you saved room for dessert, the warm double chocolate cake comes with ice cream and cherries infused with port wine.

Butcher and the Rye

Another hot spot to check out in downtown Pittsburgh is Butcher and the Rye. This popular restaurant is known for its innovative cuisine and craft cocktails. Even more impressive, it was the first bar in Pittsburgh nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Bar Program since the category’s creation in 2012. When you stop in, you’ll find a cocktail menu that includes beer, wine, whiskey, and mixed drinks. Start your meal with an artisanal cheese board, and then choose from entrée options that include a grilled filet, pan-seared rainbow trout, scallops, and rabbit and dumplings.

Meat & Potatoes

Just blocks from the Allegheny River and some of the hottest entertainment and hotels in Pittsburgh is Meat & Potatoes. Named for the classic comfort food, this modern gastropub serves New American cuisine for brunch, lunch, and dinner. Stop by for dinner, and you can start your meal with fried Brussels sprouts, poutine, or pimento macaroni and cheese. For your main course, popular dishes include Wagyu flat iron beef, spring chicken, pot roast, and salmon.

Double Wide Grill

If you’re traveling to Pittsburgh with your pet, there are also plenty of good dining spots where your furry friend can join you. When the weather is nice, head to the East Carson Street location of Double Wide Grill for dining out on the patio. The restaurant also offers a separate area that’s counter service only if you’re dining with your pet. While Double Wide Grill is known for its finger-licking barbecue, it offers an extensive vegan and vegetarian menu, as well. You’ll find options that include mango coconut tofu, a veggie gyro, and veggie burgers.

The Commoner

When you’re searching for one of the hottest farm-to-table restaurants in Pittsburgh, you need to head to The Commoner. This gastropub serves up American cuisine with a British twist. When you stop by for dinner, you’ll find menu options that include olive oil poached grouper, wood-fired pork chop, and Korma braised lamb shank.

No matter what you’re in the mood for, when you check out these top restaurants in Pittsburgh, you’re sure to leave feeling full and satisfied.

28 09 17

This article was originally published by Thomas Woods on September 21, 2017 on Tourist Choice.

With rock formations rising in the distance, Albuquerque is a sunny New Mexico destination fun to visit at any time of year. It has both historic and modern elements within the city, and lots of outdoor activities that give you opportunities to view the beautiful mountains and dessert around Albuquerque. Easily spend three days here without ever getting bored, between exploring Old Town, visiting museums, and soaking up the nightlife.

Day One: Walk Albuquerque

Explore Albuquerque’s history, which dates back to 1706, by walking through Old Town in the morning. You can expect to find a plethora of museums, shops, and restaurants in Old Town. Arrayed as a traditional Spanish neighborhood, Old Town has the San Felipe de Neri church at the center of its square. The church itself dates back to the late 1700s, and is beautiful to behold.

In the afternoon, head downtown. You’ll find more museums, more restaurants, and lots of great nightlife. Go into a few shops, then find a great spot for dinner.

Evening One: Go for Drinks and Dancing

Before you head back to your downtown Albuquerque hotel, stop in a few bars. Downtown’s Central Avenue is where you want to be for those nighttime drinks and dances. Hotels near the Albuquerque Convention Center will also place you very near Central Avenue.

Day Two: Bike in the Manzano Mountains

Lots of mountain biking trails run through the Manzano Mountains around Albuquerque. You can rent a mountain bike and spend the better part of the day exploring the majesty of these mountains. Expect to see gorgeous rock formations and some wildlife. You can choose trails that are easy, and go through the foothills, up to very advanced ones that only biking enthusiasts should attempt.

Evening Two: Enjoy a Show

You’ve spent the day exercising, so take this evening to relax and be entertained. If you’re not already asleep in your Albuquerque hotel, the city always has a live theater performance going on, whether you’re into classic plays or sketch comedy. Check the Albuquerque Theatre Guild for information on the live shows playing while you’re visiting the city. Many theatres and productions are boutique, giving you a unique taste of the local theatre in New Mexico.

Day Three: Visit Museums

On your last day in Albuquerque, spend some time exploring museums. The Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum is dedicated to the science and history of hot-air ballooning. You can see old balloon exhibits, visit a balloon flight simulator, and watch films about hot air balloons in the museum’s theater. It’s conveniently located near several Balloon Fiesta Park hotels, too, which gives you the chance to pack and check out before visiting this museum as your last stop.

Because of the beautiful weather, check out all the great pool hotels in Albuquerque. Spending an afternoon relaxing in the hotel, especially if you’re swimming outdoors while everyone back home is shivering, makes for an excellent vacation activity. Enjoy your time in sunny Albuquerque; three days isn’t long enough, so prepare to come back soon.


26 09 17

Life insurance companies are regulated by federal and state laws, so you’ll want to make sure you understand those laws before you purchase a policy. While most personal policies are regulated by state laws, employee sponsored policies are regulated by federal law, which trumps state laws. Also, depending on which state you live in, your marital status can affect life insurance policies.

If you’re married and live in a community property state, you’re both equally entitled to the life insurance policy. Also, your income will not determine your premium rate, whether you’re single or married. In fact, income is never used, and in most states, your age and gender will determine your premium rate.

State laws can be tricky for people who participate in the Medicaid program because it has a $2,000 cap on assets, which includes life insurance. Some states have a higher limit on assets so, if you participate in the Medicaid program, be sure to familiarize yourself with the Medicaid law before buying a life insurance policy.

If for whatever reason you aren’t able to make your monthly premium payment, there’s no need to fret. There are consumer protection laws in place that prevent insurers from canceling your policy. If you’re in a situation where you can’t make a payment, notify the insurance company so that you can make payment arrangements.

There are many state laws to be aware of, which can make understanding life insurance tricky. Now that you have reviewed some of the basics, test your knowledge by taking the following quiz.