“Summer.” Say it with me. “Summer.” Ahhhh… sunny days at the beach, road trips with friends, pool parties, sexy hookups, great concerts, less clothing/more tanned flesh, drinks on the deck of your favorite hotspot…Summer is all about F-U-N, and that’s what we’re bringing you in this issue ~ some ways to maximize the fun factor of this glorious time of year.
By Steph Moore
Sure, roadtrips are an absolute must for the summer ~ but sometimes you want to or have to stay closer to home ~ and when that’s the case, don’t worry, there’s no shortage of fun in the sun nearby! Here are some suggestions (mind you, I say “some” because we could fill the whole magazine with all the stuff there is to do around here!) within about an hour’s ride from Worcester ~ and since they’re so close, why pick and choose ~ there’s plenty of time to do them all!
Disc Jam 2012 Music Festival & Disc Golf Tourney, June 15-17 at Hyland Orchard & Brewery, 199 Arnold Road, Fiskdale, MA. Three letters: F – U – N. How can you go wrong with a great musical line-up, beer brewed on-site, a laid-back vibe, disc golf, lots of places to stretch out on a blanket and relax, and…did we mention the great musical line-up? facebook.com/DiscJamMusicFestival
Catch a drive-in movie at the Leicester Triple Drive-In on Route 9, www.leicesterdrivein.net
Crystal Caves in Auburn offers mini golf, batting cages (slow and fast pitch), bungee trampoline, basketball trampoline, food from burgers to pizza to hot dogs, and over 90 flavors of ice cream. www.crystalcaves.com
Head to WaterFireProvidence ~ get there early to eat, drink, and take in the amazing outdoor art and live performances, then make your way to the water for the spectacular (and very romantic) lighting of the floating torches. www.waterfire.org
Lowell Folk Festival runs from July 27-29 (www.lowellfolkfestival.org) and combines music, food, and culture, and the Lowell Summer Music Festival kicks off on June 22 with Ziggy Marley and features George Thorogood and the Destroyers on August 4 (www.lowellsummermusic.org).
Indulge your inner child’s love of amusement parks at Canobie Lake Park, in Salem, NH (about one hour from Worcester) or Six Flags New England in Springfield, MA (just under one hour from Worcester) www.canobie.com, www.sixflags.com/newEngland
Wachusett Valley Folk Festival Wachusett Village Inn hosts its annual outdoor Folk Festival with great music in the fresh air! www.wachusett.com
Summer Nationals at Green Hill Park, July 5 – 8. Once again 2012 will be the absolute largest automotive party on the east coast! This show has long been known for having some of the wildest controlled burnouts anywhere! And if that’s not enough to excite you then the flame thrower display is sure to blow you away! But it doesn’t stop there either, on top of all that there’s the Extreme Stunt Bike exhibitions held thru out the show plus several top name live bands and DJs performing on the outdoor stage! Also don’t miss the famed Miss Summer Nationals beauty pageant! On top of all this there is a huge car show with over 5000 of the wildest, most beautiful cars, trucks and custom bikes that you’ve ever seen! www.summernationals.com
Rockstar Mayhem Festival, Aug. 3 at the Comcast Center…featuring Slipnot, Slayer, Motorhead, As I Lay Dying, The Devil Wears Prada, and lots more…for a full list of bands, check out rockstarmayhemfest.com.
Canobie Lake Park in Salem, NH offers thrill rides (including the Xtreme Frisbee), water rides (like the Policy Pond Log Flume), skill and competition games, arcades, sports games, live entertainment, Wildlife Encounters, and every kind of food and snack imaginable. www.canobie.com
The Annual Latino Festival will be held at Worcester City Hall on Aug.18 from noon ‘til 9pm. For more info, head to www.worcesterlatinfestival.com.
Vans Warped Tour, July 19 in Mansfield, MA with Worcester’s Four Year Strong, Pierce the Veil, Taking Back Sunday, New Found Glory, Breathe Carolina, and many more…stay tuned at vanswarpedtour.com/bands.
Like cruises? Like music? Are you 21+? Then you’ll love the 2012 Rock and Blues Concert Cruises that take place on the Provincetown II and leave from the World Trade Center Pier in the Seaport District at 200 Seaport Blvd, Boston. Cruises usually last about three hours. There is a cash bar and food concessions on board, and this year’s musical lineup includes Max Creek,Ryan Montbleau Band, Bellevue Cadillac, The English Beat, and more. For additional info, including schedule, tickets, and parking, visit www.rockandbluescruise.com.
All the details for the 3rd annual Open Road Festival aren’t in quite yet, but based on how much fun last year’s festival was, you’re not going to want to miss this one. Open Road is Worcester’s first sustainable and earth-friendly music and arts festival that features (duh!) great live music, a variety of local artists, vendors, food, and activities. Keep checking back at www.openroadfestival.com and www.facebook.com/openroadfestival.
Water Country in Portsmouth, NH is the place for you if you like it wet-n-wild ~ there are rides & slides, waves, rivers & pools…and this summer, plunge into the screaming blackness of Dr. Von Dark’s Tunnel of Terror, the first water ride of its kind in New England. You’ll sit face-to-face in a 2-person tube then descend into a twisting 40-foot plunge through a totally enclosed, totally dark tunnel. Along the way, a wicked tornado funnel will leave your head spinning and your fears in your throat! A work of evil genius, it’s a 300 foot trip into the dark side of thrills. We suggest to take advantage of the great dining and snack selection AFTER riding the Tunnel…www.watercountry.com
The Out-to-Lunch Concerts on the Common series ~ which includes free, live concerts as well as a farmers’ market, food vendors, artists and crafters ~ runs from 12 – 2:00 p.m. on the common behind City Hall on June 29th, July 6th, 13th, 20th, and 27th, Aug. 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th and 31st. Definitely catch as many shows as you can, but make sure to mark July 13th on your calendar because that’s when roots music masters The Twangbusters will be performing ~ and you don’t want to miss their great mix of bluesy country, boogie woogie and barrelhouse! For more information, www.worcestermass.org/arts-culture-entertainment/arts-culture/out-to-lunch-concerts-on-the-common
Head out to Purgatory Chasm in Sutton to hike, rock climb, walk, take in some sun, and brave Fat Man’s Misery (or, if you’re like me, just pack a picnic and don’t stray too far from the ice cream truck). Visit www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/central/purg.htm for more info. Take a scenic ride out to Pioneer Valley and hike Mount Tom in Holyoke, MA ~ the trails are clearly marked and you can choose anything from a slow ascent to a killer climb. www.berkshirehiking.com/hikes has more info.
CoCo Key is the area’s only 55,000 sq. ft. Indoor Water Resort complete with palm trees, splashes of bright colors and a year-round 84 degree temperature. With attractions like Shark Slam, Barracuda Blast & Pelican Plunge, Coconut Grove Adventure River, Coral Reef Cavern, and the Key Quest Arcade (when you decide to dry off to stop the shriveling!), how can you go wrong, especially since it’s all just a ½ hour drive from here. www.cocokeyfitchburg.com/attractions.asp
Jazz at Sunset at The Ecotarium in Worcester: “If it’s Friday, it’s Jazz at Sunset,” one of Central MA’s’ best ideas for kicking off your weekend! For six weeks each summer, the EcoTarium is transformed into an outdoor concert venue unlike any other. Pack a picnic, come relax, and be treated to a series of not just jazz, but everything from zydeco to swing, too. www.ecotarium.org/events-activities/jazz-sunset
Amesbury Sports Park in Amesbury, MA has some awesome summer fun in store ~ North America’s longest outdoor gravity orb (OGO) run two super fast, super fun summer tubing lanes, a Musical Chairs World Championship, Festevole ~ an all day outdoor music festival, and an annual Brew Fest and BBQ…visit www.amesburysportspark.net for more.
Paulie’s Nola Jazz and Blues Festival this year features Worcester’s own The Roadkill Orchestra among a line-up of great bands straight from New Orleans…it’s food, fun, friends, beer, music, and just a great way to spend the day outdoors. June 23 & 24, rain or shine, @ John & Son’s Urban Fairgrounds, 226 Chandler St. right here in the Woo. Saturday: 11:30 am – 12:00 am – festival gates open @ 11:00 am Sunday: 12:00 am – 9:30 pm – festival gates open @ 11:00 am. www.baevents.com/pauliesnolabluesandjazzfestival will tell you everything you need to know.
Six Flags really doesn’t need an introduction, does it? It has just about every kind of ride for every kind of rider ~ from the most fearless daredevil just itching to take on Bizarro, the #1 coaster on the planet, to the more timid “I’ll-stick-to-the-carousel” type ~ it’s at Six Flags…and so is New England’s largest water park, Hurricane Harbor, along with great food, entertainment (don’t miss Flo Rida on June 3!), and special events. What’s summer without at least a day at this amazing amusement park??? www.sixflags.com/newengland
2012 ARTS ROCK! Summer Concerts at Goodale Park, West Boylston. This year there are five concerts planned:
June 23 – Our Names Forever opening for Draw The Line
July 7 – Hudlin opening for A Ton of Blues
July 21 – Time Slips Daily opening for The Alchemystics
August 4 – YOUTHS ROCK! Battle of the Bands with under-21 bands and feature artists/headliners Buddha Monk of the Wu Tang Clan, and “American Idol” contestant Ayla Brown
August 18 – OSB opening for Powerplay
Head to www.wbaf.org for more info!
Tri-State Speedway in Dudley is a great place for kids and adults of all ages to spend the day ~ whiz through two floors of indoor thrills including a 22,000-square-foot race track, bumper cars, a recently renovated arcade room, billiards tables, bowling, and an 18-hole mini golf course. When it’s time to refuel, make a pit stop at Drafters Sports Cafe to fill up on mozzarella sticks, Buffalo tenders, quesadilla rolls, and piping-hot pizza. Check out www.tristatespeedways.com for even more info, including how to join the weekly racing league.
Here’s just a partial list of all the great music that’s coming our way this summer ~ and more tours are being announced each day!
• Lady Gaga
• Red Hot Chili Peppers
• Bruce Springsteen
• Styx/REO Speedwagon/Ted Nugent
• Ringo Starr
• Identity Festival
• Brad Paisley
• Fiona Apple
• The Strokes
• Bad Religion
• Tenacious D
• Mayhem Fest
• Linkin Park
• Matchbox 20
• Rolling Stones
• Katy Perry
• Christina Aguilera
• Rage Against the Machine
• Alice in Chains
• Taylor Swift
• Jimmy Buffest
• Foster the People
• Cheap Trick
• Roger Waters
• Black Eyed Peas
• Lil Wayne
• Pink Floyd Reunion Tour
• Smashing Pumpkins
• Stone Temple Pilots
• The Black Keys
• Pearl Jam on Tour
• Bon Jovi
• Iron Maiden
• KASKADE “Freaks of Nature” Tour
• 311 and Slightly Stoopid
• Avicii – Le7els The World’s First-Ever Electronic Dance Music All Arena Tour
Fun-n-Flirty for the Ladies, Fun-n-Functional for the Guys
By Courtney E. Danielson
Some of the best things about summer? Getting to show off some skin, getting to have a little bit more fun with your style, getting to bring out the bright colors. This season, three key fashion trends will help your summer look pop…and will put you in the mood for another great part of summer ~ summer romances!
Neon ~ Bright colors are huge this season, but if you’re apprehensive about diving into such a statement-making trend, ease into it by starting with small accessories. A bright pink belt or ballerina flat will go a long way towards jazzing up your casual wear or adding a bit of interest to your work wardrobe.
Feeling more adventurous and really ready to get noticed? Neon skinny jeans and shorts are the items of the moment. Pick your favorite hue and be sure to pair it with a neutral top. Embracing a trend is great, but the “less is more” approach tends to work best with such bold choices.
Hitting the beach? This is when you can go all out with the neon trend. Get yourself a tan-enhancing neon bandeau bikini, a bright beach bag and flip flops, and hit the sand!
Peplum ~ For a more subtle and structured trend, take a look at peplum embellishments. These hot details are ruffles or tiers added to skirts, shirts, and dresses to give them a hip, slightly retro look (which is nice and girly without going over the top…so you can flirt to your heart’s content!). Kate Middleton might seem prim and proper, but she knew just what she was doing when she sported peplum designs this spring!
Bags ~ Clutches? Too small. Purses? Generally too fancy…and still too small. Oversized bags? Too…perfect! Big bright or patterned bags (or even a neutral color if you’re not into changing your bag with each outfit) are an excellent way to add character to your wardrobe ~ plus you can throw in everything you might need if that day trip turns overnight…bathing suit, towel, book, and even one of those clutches in case the guy of your dreams asks you out for an elegant dinner!
Remember ~ if you’ve been keeping your “fashion freak” side under wraps all winter, now it’s time to let it out…almost anything goes during the summer, so have FUN with your style!!
For [most of] the guys, we don’t so much want to see “fun and flirty” as “functional.” Unlike their female counterparts, dudes tend to have an easier go of things in the fashion department. However, since men’s fashion is generally more laid back, sometimes putting together an outfit that’s has just the right amount of casual style seems to elude some guys. To help solve this problem, here’s a quick rundown of the Dos and Don’ts of a Dude’s Summer Style.
Jean Shorts ~ These aren’t cute. At any length. Ever. I don’t care if they’re comfortable, they should be considered illegal. If you own a pair, don’t admit to it, just quietly toss them out.
Socks with Sandals ~ First of all, you shouldn’t really be wearing sandals anyway. Flip-flops are definitely all right, but sandals…uh, NO. But, if you are (for some inexplicable reason) wearing sandals, please don’t also wear socks. It’s weird. And you will NEVER turn heads in a good way. Unless you’re looking to attract a grandmother.
Bedazzled…Anything ~ This tip goes for all seasons. There is nothing attractive about a man in sparkles. If your shirt has elaborate designs on it that’s fine (generally), but the minute you added sparkles it became obnoxious ~ and you run the risk of being asked how long you’ve been a Disney On Ice performer.
Khaki Shorts ~ I know that you probably feel restricted now that I’ve given you one pair of acceptable shorts to wear, but khaki comes in a variety of colors (light, dark, green, blue, etc), so you don’t have to feel like your freedom of expression has gone out the window. And there are pockets…and pockets come in handy for phones, keys, wallets, breath mints…
Aviators ~ There is nothing hotter than a guy in aviators. Seriously. They come in a few different styles, and a variety of colors, so there is definitely a pair out there that will help up the hot-factor. Plus, they protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays. A win/win!
Always Wear a Shirt ~ Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean it’s okay for you to go wandering around shirtless. Even the hottest of hot guys looks awkward walking down Main Street with no shirt. Save the topless stuff for the pool, beach, or volleyball.
For On-the-Go Gamers
By Katey Khaos
Whether it’s a long car or plane ride or waiting in line at an amusement park, let’s face it ~ there’s only so much Facebooking that can be done before you’re bored out of your mind reading the same statuses over and over. (Don’t forget, however, that a lot of Facebook games like Words with Friends and Draw Something are now available for mobile devices!) But, while you’re waiting for your friends to make their move, here are five games that are must-haves to keep your gamer mind (and fingers) happy during down time this summer!
Robot Unicorn Attack: A classic. Play as a unicorn and leap and dash through the sky in pursuit of your dreams to the tune of “Always” by Erasure. It’s an easy pick-up-and-play game that’s great whether you have five minutes, or a half hour to play. $.99 | App Store | Android Market
Peggle: Very, very addicting. This mobile game is sure to keep you entertained for hours. (You’ll see what I mean once you get started!) Shoot to clear sets of orange pegs from over fifty different levels. $2.99 | App Store | Android Market
Plants vs. Zombies: A slower paced puzzle game. A mob of zombies is about to invade your home. Use an arsenal of 49 zombie-zapping plants destroy 26 types of zombies before they break down your door. This is a great game when you need to pass some time. $2.99 | App Store | Android Market
Oregon Trail: Yes, that computer game you loved playing at recess has gone mobile! This is a great game for group car rides because everyone in the car can be a character in the game ~ and the driver can participate, too! $.99 | App Store | Android Market
Minecraft: Pocket Edition: The ultimate geek-on-the-go game, and great for long trips. Build virtually anything in this handheld version of the ever-popular Minecraft. Multiplayer is even available for people on the same wireless connection! $6.99 | App Store | Android Market (Lite free version also available!)
There are hundreds of other games in both the App Store and the Android Market, so before you plan your next trip, download some new games to keep yourself busy!
…and this is an App, not a game, but it’s kind of cool so we thought we’d share it with you in this section anyway:
Tweet-A-Beer: A new mobile app, Tweet-A-Beer, now allows you to treat your friend to a beer! The Tweet-A-Beer app was developed by “tenfour” and Waggener Edstorm and just debuted at the SXSW at Austin, Texas.
This app works only if both the treater and the friend have a Twitter and a Paypal account. Since it is still physically not possible to send a chilled beer over the internet, this app powered by Chirpify (a Twitter payment app), allows you to do the next best thing. When you Tweet-A-Beer, you transfer $5 into the Paypal account of your friend. You can also add the name, place and time of the pub you would want to get together at, to make good on your offer.Tweet-A-Beer, is like an online gift card for beer. Now you can treat your friends to a beer anytime you want, even your out-of-town friends!
Fun Stuff for Summer
You Might Not NEED These “Toys,” But It Sure Would Be Cool to Have Them!
By Steve Henricksen
Every band’s practice space needs a fridge filled with cold drinks ~ especially during the hot months. And we can’t imagine a more fitting one than the Marshall Fridge. No, this isn’t just old amps shopped out of flea markets, fixed up and converted into a fridge cabinet. Instead, it appears to be mash-ups built from the ground up with the music amplifier officially on board, so every single part is authentic. Heck, it’s even got Jim Marshall signatures on each one, just like all of the company’s newer releases. The Marshall Fridge hides the cooling appliance underneath what looks like a legit amp ~ the facing, the logos and control knobs are all legit Marshall hardware. Lift the facing to the side, however, and you’ll find the fridge, which features 4.4 cubic feet of storage, three racks on the main area (including a top rack sized to hold cans), and even a small freezer. Price is $299. marshallfridge.com
Cooling Car Summer Seats
There are a lot of cars that come with built-in heaters in the seats and even if your car doesn’t have that, you can always put something in your car to solve that problem. One thing you don’t see a whole lot is something on the seat to keep you a little more cool. Which during a long road trip or when you’re stuck in a traffic jam would be really nice. There are times when the air conditioning just doesn’t cut it. For those times, there is this seat cooler.
This would be especially nice for those of you that have leather seats. Yes, the leather looks great, but when it’s hot and sticky out, a leather seat does not help matters any. This stays powered by either using the power from your car battery or can be plugged into your average wall socket. This will provide instant relief while you’re waiting on your air conditioning to cool the rest of the car. Plus you’ll no longer have to worry about your back being sweaty from not getting any air circulation thanks to the cooling fan. You can purchase one of these 12V Cooling Car Summer Seats for $59.99. www.smarthome.com
Why camp in a regular tent when you can make your temporary shelter in a giant hammock? We guess that’s the perfect rationale behind the Tentsile, a tent designed to dangle in the air like a hanging bed of canvas. Except with more floor space. Or maybe it’s to protect you from Walkers when the apocalypse arrives (just make sure it’s high enough so they can’t bite your ass while you’re sleeping).
Combining the suspended nature of hammocks with the usable space of a tent, the structure gives campers more versatility in their off-path shelter options ~ as long as there are trees nearby to tie this thing around, you can set up there. It can be hung as low as a couple feet away from the ground or way up in Tarzan territory for the more adventurous. A rope ladder is included for entry and exit while suspended.
Three sizes of the tent have been made, each one able to hold 5, 8 and 12 occupants, respectively. Yep, that many people in a hanging tent.
As of now, we’re not sure about availability, as Tentsile hasn’t published pricing or release details on their website, but it’s worth checking out anyway if you’re into the whole camping/nature thing. www.tentsile.com
You want to take your shiny new fixie for a spin. But you also want to hit the skate park and practice your grinds before you head home. Normally, that’s not a problem with your SSCY Bandolier Bag and its board-holding powers, but you don’t really want to carry an entire bag ~ just a board. If you had the Fairdale Pannier Skaterack on your bike, you’d be all set.
Just like regular panniers, this one attaches to the rear rack on your bike. Unlike them, though, it’s specially designed to hold just one type of cargo: a skateboard. That way, you can hit the streets on your bike and have a skateboard on standby, ready to be put to use when your crotch starts hurting from sitting on that saddle the whole time.
The Fairdale Pannier Skaterack can mount to most existing bike racks using velcro straps, giving your bike instant space to carry a skateboard. The board is positioned with the wheels facing outward and well behind the rear axle, so there’s no risk of hitting it with any part of your feet while you pedal.
To stow your bike, you just hook one truck onto the bottom loop and lock it in place with a bungee cord up top. The rack’s frame sports a cushioned rubber coating that’s both gentle on your board and keeps it from rattling while stored there.
Price and shipping date for the Fairdale Pannier Skaterack is not yet final, so you’ll probably have to wait a short while before getting your hands on one. www.fairdalebikes.com/products
Sometimes it’s just too hot and humid out and all you want to do is sit in an air conditioned theatre and veg out to a great movie…here’s a list of some of the flicks coming our way this summer.
Rock of Ages
Starring: Diego González Boneta, Julianne Hough, Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin, Bryan Cranston
Director: Adam Shankman
Starring: Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron, Michael Fassbender, Guy Pearce, Idris Elba
Director: Ridley Scott
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Starring: Benjamin Walker, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Rufus Sewell, Anthony Mackie
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Starring: Kelly Macdonald, Julie Walters, Billy Connolly, Robbie Coltrane, Craig Ferguson
Director: Mark Andrews
G.I. Joe: Retaliation
Starring: Channing Tatum, Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Adrianne Palicki
Director: Jon M. Chu
The Amazing Spider-Man
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Irrfan Khan, Martin Sheen
Director: Marc Webb
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Laura Vandervoort, Giovanni Ribisi
Director: Seth MacFarlane
The Dark Knight Rises
Starring: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Gary Oldman
Director: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, Rosemarie DeWitt
Director: Frank Coraci
The Bourne Legacy
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Rachel Weisz, Edward Norton, Scott Glenn, Joan Allen
Director: Tony Gilroy
Starring: Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Bryan Cranston, Jessica Biel, Bill Nighy, Ethan Hawke
Director: Len Wiseman
The Expendables 2
Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Bruce Willis, Arnold
Director: Simon West
For complete plot summaries of all these films and more, head to www.movie-moron.com.
Get Your Pool Ready for a Party!
By Steph Moore
Port-O-Pong ~ So you’re having a party and need some extra entertainment in the pool. Why not add Port-O-Pong, the pool version of the party game beer pong. Just add cups and your favorite party beverage. Available in blue and pink – the game possibilities are endless. Please drink responsibly around a swimming pool, and watch swimmers closely.
Swim-up Black Jack Table ~ One more for those who like a little card playing with their pool time. With our Swim-up Black Jack table, you can enjoy an afternoon in Vegas without leaving your own backyard! Includes waterproof playing cards and poker chips. Casino style gaming or just a relaxed game of Go-Fish while in the pool is a great way to spend time with friends and family. Floating blackjack table is multi-purpose! Flipped over and it can become a floating hors d’oeuvre buffet! Or a place to hold a book while you float on a pool raft.
Both of the above are available at www.intheswim.com!
A Giant, Water-Friendly Beanbag ~ Plopping down on a giant beanbag pillow is always good for relaxing. So is chilling out in the pool. And you can do both at the same time with the King Kai Pool Float. Unlike regular pool floats, this one is made with foam beads — just like those form-hugging beanbags you still keep in the basement. Because of that, it doesn’t sit stiff, adjusting to fit your form and giving you one heck of a comfy surface for those hot, sunny afternoons.
The King Kai Pool Float is a water-treading pillow filled with buoyant versions of the body-hugging stuff they fill up your Fatboy Metahlowski with. Body is decked in sunbrella canvas, a stain- and mold-resistant material that keeps cool even after an entire day of lounging in the sun. It comes with an easy-access drain for quickly drying once you’re off the pool, along with a built-in strap and water-proof grommets for tying off when not in use.
Measuring 60 x 75 inches, it can squeeze up to two skinny people, keeping them afloat while they relax in peaceful slumber at the local dumpster pool. And when you’re done with the water, you can fish it out onto solid ground and haul it to the living room for a round on the Xbox 360. Yep, it can work as a regular beanbag, too.
Made by Brookstone, the King Kai Pool Float might be a little pricier than those plastic inflatables you’re used to ~ but it’s a two-person beanbag and float in one, which should adequately make the case for the $249.95 price.
Gigantic Donut Pool Float ~ The cool new Gigantic Donut Pool Float is an inflatable inner tube pool float that is appropriately shaped like a donut with frosting, sprinkles, and a huge bite missing. In the entire history of pool float rings, why has this never existed ‘til now??
Available at www.perpetualkid.com.
Best Beach Books
By Stephanie Monahan
Heading to the beach or for a weekend of camping? Take a look at these books, you might just want to bring one with you!
In Chad Harbach’s The Art of Fielding, college baseball is the backdrop to a story about the way lives intersect on a Wisconsin college campus. When star pitcher Henry makes one ill-fated throw, no one can foresee the consequences. The book tackles self-doubt, commitment, ambition, and ~ of course ~ baseball.
Already read The Hunger Games and looking for more well-written, action-packed YA dystopia? Good news ~ the second book in Lauren Oliver’s Delirium trilogy, Pandemonium, has just been released. In a world where doctors have found the cure to love, Lena can’t wait to receive her government-mandated treatment when she turns eighteen. Then she meets Alex.
Katie, the main character in Catherine McKenzie’s Spin, doesn’t think she has a drinking problem ~ until she shows up drunk for an interview for her dream job. The incident propels her into a secret assignment for a top music magazine and Katie finds herself in rehab, embroiled in a complicated relationship with a celebrity and struggling with a moral dilemma she can see no way out of unscathed.
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail is a memoir by Cheryl Strayed, who, at twenty-two, feels as if her life is coming apart. In a last-ditch effort to reclaim a part of her that’s gone missing, she decides to hike an eleven-hundred-mile trail through the Mojave Desert and three states. Only problem? She’s never backpacked long distances before, and she’s doing it alone.
Mystery fans will be taken for a ride in William Landay’s Defending Jacob. Middlesex County assistant DA Andy Barber has it all: a great job, a strong marriage, a good relationship with his son, Jacob, and a perfect life in Newton. Then a local teenager is found dead and Jacob is charged with murder. The good father, Andy is sure his son is innocent…then facts begin to unravel, and Andy wonders if he really knows Jacob at all.
Best Places to Enjoy Outdoor Dining
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