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Slide Presentation Promotes Excursions

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Looking for a convenient, worry-free way to vacation? Columbia College Community Education is promoting a new series of upcoming travel excursions for 2004 through a slide presentation on Friday, Oct. 31 at 10:30 a.m. in Oak 12. These exciting trips, which depart from and return to Sacramento, are fully planned and coordinated in advance by tour professionals. The informative presentation is free to attend; detailed brochures will be available and sign-ups will be accepted at that time. March 19 is the departure date for touring the Canyon Country of Arizona and Utah where you will discover some of America´s most colorful and spectacular scenery.

Visit six national parks over eight days with an optional two-night stay in Scottsdale. You´ll see Oak Creek Canyon, Kaibab National Forest, Grand Canyon, Lake Powell, Monument Valley, Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol, Bryce and Zion National Parks, Dead Horse Point, Escalante Canyons and Las Vegas.

History buffs should inquire about the ten-day trip to Mackinac Island and the Great Lakes, starting on May 7. This unforgettable area boasts incredible scenery with a historic backdrop. The excursion includes Dearborn, Frankenmuth, Holland, the Tulip Gardens, Traverse City, Charlevoix, Green Bay, Door County and Chicago. Have you ever thought about visiting Canada´s scenic Atlantic Coast? Departing on July 7, you´ll spend ten glorious days sightseeing in Halifax, Peggy´s Cove, Fundy Trail, Hopewell Rocks, Prince Edward Island, College of Piping, Cavendish National Park, Cape Breton Island, Cabot Trail and Grand Pre National Park — even go on a lobster trip! One major consideration for the Canadian tour package is that our strong U.S. dollar will enhance your vacation there.

A historic D-Day to the Battle of the Bulge Tour begins on June 23. This twelve-day European journey focuses on the World War II battle for Normandy and the major battles that followed. Your excursion starts in Portsmouth, England with visits to the D-Day Museum, London´s Imperial War Museum, and the Churchill War Rooms. Next, you will ferry across the English Channel and drive along the coast of France to Normandy to visit the Peace Museum in Caen and Deauville´s parachute- shaped Airborne Museum. You´ll view the Pointe Du Hoc Ranger Memorial where Lt. Col. James E. Rudder´s 2nd Ranger Battalion scaled the 100-foot cliffs to seize the strategic enemy position. Other included tour sites are Utah Beach, the Utah Beach Museum, the 508th Parachute Infantry Memorial, Omaha Beach and the U.S. Military Cemetery. Through this excursion, you´ll also see Luxembourg and Cologne, concluding with a comprehensive tour of Berlin, Germany.

Have you ever visited charming New England in the fall? It is by far the most beautiful time of year with colors sweeping the broad landscape and creating picture-perfect postcard vistas at every bend of the road. During this spectacular eight day Fall Foliage Tour departing on October 10, you´ll see the best of New England, beginning with two days in Boston and a visit to Old Sturbridge Village, a living museum of America´s early years. You´ll travel the picturesque back roads of Vermont through the land of Robert Frost and Grandma Moses, taking time to stroll among small villages along the way.

In New Hampshire, you´ll enjoy an overnight stay in the awesome panorama of the Mount Washington Valley — home, by the way, to some exceptional shopping. Departing on November 17, the six day Smoky Mountains Tour offers an itinerary filled with festive celebrations and holiday cheer. Your three-night stay in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee will give you lots of time to explore the 250-room Biltmore Estate, which will be entirely decorated for the holidays, and for shopping in the historic Biltmore Village. Three entertaining shows are yours to enjoy too, including performances at the Louise Mandrell Theatre and the Country Tonight Theater. Plus, you will step back in time to an old-fashioned Christmas with a visit to Dollywood, and cap off your tour with two nights at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville.

All excursion packages consist of airfare from Sacramento, lodging, most meals, and other miscellaneous admission tickets. For more information, including travel details and prices, call the college´s Community Education office at 588-5144.