SKIJORING AT SNOWFEST
Winter sports enthusiasts will want to head to the Skowhegan State Fairgrounds in February for the Northeast Equestrian Skijoring Regionals, Maine’s first and New England’s only equestrian skijoring competition (Feb. 25, 11 a.m.). What in the world is skijoring, you ask? It’s a sport that pairs a horse and rider with a snowboarder or alpine skier. At Skijor Skowhegan, the team time-trial racers will traverse a 1,000-foot track of gates and jumps. In addition to bragging rights, competitors with the fastest runs will win cash and additional prizes. The Baxter Brewing Company is hosting a beer garden, and a concession booth will serve soups, chili, hotdogs, and pizza. The event is part of the larger Somerset Snowfest, taking place in the towns of Skowhegan, Canaan, and Madison, that includes a box sled derby for kids, ice-hole world championships, downhill kayak race, winter woodland scavenger hunt, horse-drawn sleigh rides, and more. (February 18-26). Most events are free unless noted in registration forms. somersetsnowfest.org
ART WITH ATTITUDE
Fairfield University Art Museum turns its attention to promoting women’s empowerment with its new exhibition, “Women’s Rights Are Human Rights.” Comprised of more than 80 colorful posters, created by both men and women artists worldwide, the show celebrates and acknowledges the vital role citizens play in protecting and promoting human rights while addressing issues of gender inequalities entrenched in our global society. From gender wage disparities, access to basic education and health care, violence, discrimination, and sexual and reproductive rights, the posters in the exhibit challenge religious and cultural norms and patriarchal attitudes with the aim of achieving true equality between women and men. Walsh Gallery. Jan. 20 through April 8. Free. www.fairfield.edu/museum/exhibitions/upcoming-exhibitions/womens-rights-are-human-rights/index.html
CARIBBEAN CHARMS IN ST. CROIX
Enjoy a relaxing escape from the cold at the newly renovated King Christian Hotel on the US Virgin Island of St. Croix. Situated on the Christiansted waterfront in the heart of downtown — with boardwalk access to restaurants, bars, shops, and the casino — the boutique luxury hotel features 46 fully remodeled rooms and suites, and six distinct culinary concepts. Bright and airy accommodations feature custom-designed terracotta flooring, cane and wood furnishings, natural jute rugs, brass finishes, and floor-to-ceiling marble-clad bathrooms. A lush secluded pool and sundeck, with teak lounge chairs, hand-painted side tables, and striped umbrellas, offers a dedicated poolside menu of cocktails and small plates. A nearby water taxi ferries guests to snorkeling and swimming opportunities at Protestant Cay Beach. Named a top travel destination for 2023, St. Croix does not require a passport for US travelers. Standard suite rates from $249. +1 340-773-6330, www.kingchristianhotel.com
NEW CRUISE EXPLORES PACIFIC NORTHWEST
Cruise the Columbia and Snake Rivers of the Pacific Northwest on America Queen Voyages’ new Portland to Spokane tours. Travelers will board the American Empress, the largest overnight riverboat west of the Mississippi River, for a nine-day cruise between ports in both Oregon and Washington. The journey offers views of dramatic coastlines, snow-capped mountains, rolling hills of vineyards, and lush forests, and includes visits to port towns and cities with outdoor adventures, historic sites, gift shops, antique stores, art galleries, craft breweries, and lively restaurants. Voyages are offered many weeks, from March through November 2023-2024. Rates from $2,479.20. 866-522-1166, www.aqvoyages.com/river-cruises/columbia-snake-river/portland-to-spokane/
READY, SET, FISH!
Get ready for fly fishing season with a rod from the Tenkara Rod company. A simple type of fly fishing developed in Japan, tenkara — literally “fishing from heaven” or “sky fishing — is primarily used for trout and other fish in freshwater mountain creeks and streams. A great way to learn the sport without a reel, the compact gear is ideal for backpacking, bike packing, camping, and road trips. The 2.3-ounce Beartooth Rod is the company’s most compact and easy-to-pack rod, collapsing down to 14 inches, and extending to 10 feet with 6:4 flex. The Beartooth Package includes the rod, rod tube, rod sock, line, line holder, flies, and tippet. $225. www.tenkararodco.com
PERSONALIZED RUNNING SHOES
Having comfortable footwear when traveling is a necessity, not a luxury. Whether you’re running on woodland trails or exploring a new city, you can now elevate your athletic footwear experience with Hilma, a running shoe brand with new technology created specifically for women. What differentiates this performance product from others on the market is that it takes more than one measurement to determine your perfect size. A five-minute online consultation employs multidimensional sizing, including choosing different toe boxes from square to tapered, to provide a personalized fit. Features include a cushioned tongue, lateral side toe bar, lugged rubber outsole, and breathable mesh upper. The 9.7-ounce body makes them easy to pack and wear. Available in three colors. $159 includes shipping. https://join-hilma.com
Necee Regis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.