A TOAST TO NEW ENGLAND’S CRAFT BREWS
Get a taste of craft beers, ciders, and artisanal drinks at the Hyper-Local Craft Brewfest in Cambridge, June 16. The outdoor event features two tasting sessions, 2:30-5:30 p.m., and 6:30-9:30 p.m., at its new Central Square location in University Park (head to 38 Sidney Street). What makes a drink “hyper local?” One that’s created with ingredients grown, made, or harvested in New England (think local hops, apples, cranberries, grapes, and even oysters). Chat with brewers, find out about homebrewing, learn about new breweries, and sample local food. Attend the evening session and try unfiltered and unpasteurized beer with no nitrogen or carbon dioxide added. The Sustainable Business Network of Massachusetts sponsors this event, which raises money for the Boston Local Food Program. Tickets: $40 in advance, $50 at the door, $75 for two tickets to one session, and $65 for VIP, offering fast-lane access and a meal ticket. 617-395-7680, www.hyperlocalbrew.eventbrite.com.
MOUNDS OF FUN AT CRANMORE ADVENTURE PARK
Grab your friends and head to Cranmore Mountain Resort, which opens its Mountain Adventure and Aerial Adventure parks daily beginning June 16. Ride a mountain coaster and a giant swing, go tubing, and then try Knockerball, when you slip into a rubber ball and play soccer while bouncing off other players in an inflatable arena. Knockerballs have inner handles and adjustable shoulder straps, and they fit anyone 48 inches or taller. Also explore the forest canopy on one of eight elevated ropes courses. The new Kids Ropes Course lets children as young as 3 get a feel for it, as they follow a continuous belay course through the trees, over bridges, and along zip lines. Tickets: $32-$42 for Mountain Adventure Park, or $42-$74 for All-Day Play, which includes both parks. Starting June 16, visitors can take a chairlift to the summit’s Meister Hut Restaurant, where there’s beer tasting room, ice cream, and a Summit After Hours series. 800-786-6754, www.cranmore.com.
VISIT A NEW UNDERWATER ART MUSEUM
SCUBA divers can explore the new Underwater Museum of Art when it opens at the end of June in South Walton on Florida’s northwest coast. The museum will lie on a sandy 1-acre patch of seabed, .71 miles off the coast near Grayton Beach State Park. Divers can explore seven original sculptures in the permanent exhibition, including Marek Anthony’s “Propeller in Motion,” Rachel Herring’s “The Grayt Pineapple,” Evelyn Tickle’s “Concrete Rope Reef Spheres,” and Allison Wickey’s “Anamorphous Octopus.” These artificial reefs are being deployed to help protect the marine habitat and provide a source of biological replenishment for the barren sand flats. Fish Booty Charters will run four-hour dive trips for two to three divers leaving from Grayton Beach. Trips include two or three dives with stops at the underwater museum (850-586-0807, www.fishybooty.com). Rate: $450; divers must bring their own gear, snacks and drinks. www.visitsouthwalton.com.
EXPLORE ANCIENT ROMAN WORLDS FROZEN IN TIME
Visit Pompeii and neighboring Herculaneum — two cities buried in lava after Mt. Vesuvius erupted 1,939 years ago—and enjoy special access to sites not generally open to the public. On Andante Travels’ 8-day Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Classical Campania tour, you’ll be led by guides and lecturers who have helped excavate the sites and can discuss the latest archeological discoveries. Spend a day in Pompeii visiting some of the best-preserved buildings, explore the temples at Paestum (a city once ruled by ancient Greece), and get special access to the cavernous Piscina Mirabilis at Misenum, a giant cistern that stored water for local towns. Also explore Herculaneum and ascend Vesuvius’s volcanic crater. Available tours depart September and October. Rates start at $3,095 per person, double occupancy, and include all meals, hotels, entrance fees, guides, and roundtrip airfare from London (rate slightly less if flying directly to Italy from the United States). 844-425-6080, www.andantetravels.com.
UNCLOG YOUR EARS WHILE FLYING
If you have ever flown while stuffed up from allergies or a cold, or had trouble clearing your ears during a flight for any reason, you’ve probably never forgotten the experience — and the extreme discomfort. A new product, called Eustachi, helps relieve clogged ears by exercising your Eustachian tubes. The handheld battery-operated device, which is about the size of an electric thermometer, gently blows air into your nose as you swallow. These actions help exercise your Eustachian tubes and equalize the air pressure behind your eardrums when other methods don’t work, such as pinching your nose and blowing. The Eustachi is recommended for people 3 and older, as long as the user can follow directions to swallow while using the device. Takes two AA batteries. $59.95 at Target and CVS. www.eustachiunclogsears.com.
BEHOLD THE PERFECT BEACH BAG
You may bring shells and a nice suntan home from the beach, but it’s likely you don’t need extra sand in your house or car. The ingenious new CGear Sand-Free Backpack has a special open-weave fabric on the bottom that lets sand fall out of the pack, in case you throw your sandy shoes, towel, or beach toys inside, but doesn’t let sand or dirt penetrate the bag from the outside — perfect for setting it down on a dirty, dusty, or sandy surface, and for when you’re traveling with kids. The lightweight, mesh bag has a fold-over lid that clips shut, two shoulder straps for easy carrying, a small internal pocket for car keys and small items, and a separate zippered section in the bottom. $29.99. www.cgear-sandfree.com.