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Travel Photo of the Week: Trooping the Colour, London

Wednesday April 23, 2014

Visitors to London enjoy seeing the pageantry of royal ceremonies, such as the Changing the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace. If you're lucky enough to be in London on June 14, you can watch Trooping the Colour, the annual military parade held in honor of the Queen's official birthday. (Her actual birthday was April 21, but the official celebration is held in June because the weather is better for outdoor events.)

If you're planning a trip to London, whether in June or at another time, take a look at our tips for saving money on accommodations, food and activities in the UK's capital.

Photo © Mike Vam

Visit a State Capitol With Your Grandchildren

Tuesday April 22, 2014

If you're looking for an educational place to visit with your grandchildren, but can't stand the thought of yet another museum, consider touring a state capitol, either in your home state or during a grandparent-grandchild vacation. Your grandchildren will see legislative chambers, offices and perhaps even the State Supreme Court chamber. Visiting a state capitol is a great way to bring the governmental process to life.

If you've never visited a state capitol, you're in for a treat. Take a look at our tips for visiting a state capitol with your grandchildren.

Photo © Old Line Photography. Licensed to About.com.

Travel Photo of the Week: Genealogy Library Stacks in Fort Wayne, Indiana

Tuesday April 15, 2014

My love of travel began with books and family stories. Long before I was old enough to plan trips of my own, I met relatives who drove from Wisconsin and Minnesota to California for family visits, and I read about children in other parts of the world who were just my age but had very different life experiences. My grandmother told me stories about her German ancestors and her own childhood. It's no wonder I fell in love with both travel and genealogy.

Last week, I discovered an amazing family history resource. On the second floor of the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana, you can visit The Genealogy Center, which is the largest public library genealogy department in the United States. Its manager, Mr. Curt B. Witcher, is a well-known genealogy librarian who gives talks and interviews around the US. Mr. Witcher gave us a tour of The Genealogy Center and showed us where to find city directories, printed family histories, African American and Canadian genealogy resources and digital microfiche readers. I freely admit to saying, "I have to come back here!" several times during our tour, and I meant every word.

If you're new to genealogy vacations, take a look at our genealogy vacation planning tips. Whether you're headed to The Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne or to an ancestral village, our tips will help you make the most of your time and resources.

Photo © Old Line Photography. Licensed to About.com.

An Outlet Sale Like No Other

Saturday April 12, 2014

If you're a Vera Bradley fan, Fort Wayne, Indiana, is the place to be each April. The Vera Bradley Outlet Sale is so huge that it is held in the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. The checkout area has approximately 50 registers. Over 60,000 people attended the sale last year. And, yes, shoppers do line up in the wee hours of the morning to get the best deals.

I went to the sale on Wednesday and was amazed at how organized and calm it was. My understanding is that things were a bit crazier today; no tickets are required on Saturday or Sunday of the sale, and prices are marked down again, so die-hard bargain hunters waited until today to find their best deals.

I took careful notes, asked lots of questions and photographed the sale floor and some of the displays. Next year's Vera Bradley Outlet Sale begins on April 8, 2015. If you're interested in attending, you'll want to take a look at my suggestions for planning your Vera Bradley adventure (tip: start now).

Photo © Old Line Photography. Licensed to About.com.

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