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From the Northhampton Paradise Festival to Colorado ski deals



Paradise in Northampton over Columbus weekend

Celebrate Columbus Day weekend at the 20th annual Paradise City Arts Festival in Northampton, where you’ll see fine and functional art by 275 juried artists from across the country, buy handmade crafts from talented artisans, enjoy cuisine from some of the area’s best chefs, and see live performances by regional and nationally known musicians. The event, at the 3-County Fairgrounds, features an exhibit called “Face to Face: From Portraits to Selfies, the Art and Craft of Making Faces.” Northampton chefs will whip up everything from homemade ice cream to wood-fired pizza, fresh lobster rolls, and overstuffed burritos using ingredients from the valley’s farms. Savor these and other flavors in the Festival Dining Tent while listening to The O-Tones, blues and country rock by Roger Salloom and his seven-piece band, and tunes by the Art Steele Blues Band. Tickets for the Oct. 11-13 event run $8 for students; $11 for age 65 and older; $13 for adults; free for 12 and under; $16 for three-day pass. 800-511-9725, www.paradisecityarts.com

Kenmore Square’s hip, historic, renovated hotel

Stay at the Hotel Commonwealth in Kenmore Square and enjoy the newly renovated guestrooms, or the three luxury suites that celebrate the city’s punk music past, current modern art vibe, and Boston University school spirit. All 149 guestrooms boast fresh, modern decor and come with a Google Nexus tablet that serves as a virtual concierge, letting you order room service, make restaurant reservations, book dog-walking appointments, or complete express checkout. Or select a special package for The Terrier Suite, which salutes Boston University’s sports legacy and showcases memorabilia from the school’s long history in Kenmore Square; The Rathskeller Suite, which pays homage to the legendary live music club, the Rat, that once sat on this site, and comes with a graffiti-inspired headboard, and a Bose digital home theater speaker system; and The Loft, modeled after an industrial chic artsy space with its 18-foot vaulted ceilings, and works by local artists. Stay tuned next year for 96 new guestrooms and three suites overlooking Fenway Park. Rates start at $359 per room, $599 for suites. 866-784-4000, www



Colorado ski card offers great deals

Heading to Colorado this winter? Consider getting the Colorado Gems Card, which gives skiers and snowboarders two-for-one adult lift tickets and other special deals at eight resorts, including Arapahoe Basin, Eldora Mountain Resort, Loveland Ski Area, Monarch Mountain, Powderhorn Resort, Ski Cooper, Ski Granby Ranch, and Sunlight Mountain Resort. Each card ($20) is good for one use per Gems resort, per season, and only a limited number of cards, created by Colorado Ski Country USA, are available. 303-837-0793, www.coloradoski.com/gems


Children eat, stay, playfor free in San Diego

More than 90 San Diego hotels, restaurants, attractions, museums, and transportation companies offer special deals through October for Kids Free San Diego. Children 12 and under can ride for free on Amtrak and enjoy complimentary boat tours of San Diego Bay, while those 10 and under can get free admission to the San Diego Zoo, home to 3,700 rare and endangered birds, mammals and reptiles, and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, which has a new forested habitat for endangered Sumatran tigers. Freebie deals also apply to LEGOLAND California Resort, the San Diego Air & Space Museum, and the New Children’s Museum. Children 6 to 12 can take a complimentary surfing lesson at Surf Diva Surf School in La Jolla, the world’s first all-woman surf school. Children can also eat for free at more than 30 hotels, from budget to luxury properties, and many restaurants. Restrictions apply for most deals. 619-236-1212 www.sandiego.org/kidsfree



Take this speaker on the road

The new Speaker Mojo, a 2.5-inch cube-shaped speaker made by bem wireless, tucks into the corner of your travel bag, yet delivers crisp, robust sound. Connect this Bluetooth speaker to your smartphone and then push the Play/Pause/Phone button to answer an incoming call; the speaker has a built-in microphone so you can chat without having to dig out your phone. Charge the wireless speaker by placing it on the conductive charging base so you can just grab it and go, or plug it directly into a wall socket or computer using a USB cord. The base also serves as an 1800mAh power bank, so you can use it to refuel your phone, tablet, and other portable devices. $79.99. 855-839-8616, www.bemwireless.com