Deals for new skiers and snowboarders
Want to learn to ski or snowboard? Consider taking an adult clinic at Pats Peak in New Hampshire and get a lesson, half-day lift ticket, and lunch for less than the cost of a regular half-day lift ticket. The Weekday Adult Ski/Snowboard Clinics run Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings (with a few holiday exclusions) through the end of the season. Clinics cost $40 per day for a one-time pass to $300 for a 10-clinic package. Or sign up for Passport Program PLUS, a weekend program that includes four beginner lessons, lift ticket, and rental packages. After finishing the program, you get a free Pats Peak Unlimited Season Pass, a free pair of Elan skis and bindings (limited quantities available), and discounts at ski shops in Concord, Salem, Nashua, and Manchester, N.H., and at The Ski House in Somerset, Mass. The prepaid program costs $389, for 18 and older. 888-728-7732, www.patspeak.com.
Boston’s annual Celtic festival
Celtic musicians, singers, and dancers from around the world gather in Cambridge Jan. 16-19 for the 17th annual Boston Celtic Music Festival, known as BCMFest. The event includes more than 60 performances at Club Passim, The Sinclair, and The Atrium in Harvard Square, showcasing artists from Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton, and other Celtic communities. Enjoy performances by renowned Cape Breton fiddling duo Mary Jane Lamond and Wendy MacIsaac, Irish step dancer Kevin Doyle (a US step dancing champion), and dozens of local dancers and musicians. Don’t miss the Boston Urban Ceilidh Jan. 17, a Celtic dance party with live music at The Atrium, and Dayfest, which features more than 12 hours of Celtic music Jan. 18 at Club Passim and The Sinclair. Tickets range from free to $25, depending on event. Two workshops on Cape Breton music and dancing take place Jan. 19 at The Passim School of Music ($45 per person). 617-492-7679, www.passim.org/bcmfest.
Reel fun in Belmont
Bring your kids to Belmont World Film’s 17th Annual Family Festival and enjoy animation workshops and more than 35 films from around the world. This year’s festival, themed “Where Stories Come Alive,” features live action, animated, and documentary films geared to children 2 to 12. It begins Jan. 17 at Belmont’s Regent Theatre with the East Coast premiere of “Hacker,” a Danish film about a boy whose mother, a scientist, disappears under mysterious circumstances — and that ends happily. Subsequent days focus on different themes: the animal kingdom (Jan. 18), short films (Jan. 19), and the ideals and values of Martin Luther King Jr. (Jan. 20). Also attend The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show Storytime with storytelling and an audience participation puppet show, and talks and workshops with writer/director Cinzia Angelini, the head story artist for “Abominable.” Tickets: $6 (shorts) to $20 (workshops); $50 festival pass includes all programs except workshops. 617-484-3980, www.belmontworldfilm.org.
‘Tis the season for Drunk Yoga
Two people walk into a bar and their discussion over a glass of wine leads to the founding of Drunk Yoga, a program that encourages people to try something new without feeling intimidated. Eli Walker, the founder of Drunk Yoga and a certified astrologer, isn’t a proponent of getting drunk — though you’re welcome to enjoy a complimentary wine, beer, or mimosa in her yoga classes — but it’s about getting drunk, in a sense, on the good feelings of connecting with others, celebrating community, and trying something new with supportive strangers. Walker has teamed up with CheapCaribbean to offer a three-day New Year, Do You Retreat in Cancun, Feb. 20-23, which focuses on self-care, mental wellness, and beachside fun. It includes Drunk Yoga classes (with cocktails, coffee, or water in hand), one-on-one birth chart readings, sunrise (sober) beach yoga, Walker’s character-development workshops, and a copy of Walker’s book, “Drunk Yoga: 50 Wine and Yoga Poses to Lift Your Spirit(s).” Cost: $1,299 per person, includes roundtrip flight from Boston, three nights at Haven Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa, and the above activities. www.tiny.cc/3ul2hz.
New hotel within Austin city limits
Austin’s newest hotel has a state-of-the-art gym overlooking Lady Bird Lake, an in-house yoga studio, and a welcoming décor that’s influenced by the area’s historic craftsman-style homes and art nouveau flair. Austin Proper Hotel, the area’s first LEED Gold-certified hotel, offers 244 rooms and suites that come with Nespresso machines and Apple TVs. Borrow an electric bike to cruise around town or have a Peloton bike sent up to your room for a private workout; the hotel’s full-service spa and swimming pool with private cabanas open this spring. The property has a Mediterranean grill with Israeli- and Turkish-inspired fare and an elegant sunken bar with signature cocktails. A coffee shop and café with take-out options opens soon. Rates start at $350 per night, double occupancy. 888-333-0546, www.properhotel.com.
An insulated chair for travelers
Keep warm on your winter adventures with Helinox’s portable Chair One and Seat Warmer. Chair One has rugged aluminum poles with internal bungee cords that make setup and breakdown a breeze — they spring into place during setup and easily come apart for packing — and a durable canvas material that quickly attaches to the frame. Slip Helinox’s new Seat Warmer, made of synthetic down, over the chair for extra warmth on colder days; cinch the cover in place using the drawstring cord so it doesn’t shift around when you do. The low-riding chair packs down to the size of a loaf of bread — and comes with a handy zippered travel bag — so you can stuff it in the corner of your car or backpack. It weighs less than a pound and supports up to 320 pounds. $100 chair, $70 seat warmer. 877-267-2882, www.helinox.com.
Kari Bodnarchuk can be reached at email@example.com.