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The Republican National Convention is under way in Tampa, Florida (with a watchful eye on Hurricane Isaac). Next week, Democrats will descend on Charlotte, North Carolina for their quadrennial festivities. When it’s all over, the two host cities will join a fairly short list of places that have welcomed the two major political parties. We decided to take a look at that list and see which cities have hosted the most national conventions, what presidential history has been left behind, and what kinds of attractions continue to make those destinations such fantastic vacation spots.
There are some surprises in our Top 10 National Conventional Host Cities. Denver hosted its only two conventions 100 years apart. Cincinnati had its number called to host the parties three different times (granted, all between 1856 and 1880). The Democrats didn’t hold a convention in the South after the Civil War until 1928′s affair in Houston.
Which city has hosted the most conventions? Which president was the “second-most hated man in Miami” (according to those in Little Havana)? And what can you do now in all of those cities to enjoy a great vacation? All of the answers are waiting for you here.
Spring is officially upon us, and although there’s still time to squeeze in some skiing, the running trails are starting to beckon, too. Lace up the sneaks and get back into form with these spring races in happening cities. Bring a buddy and make a weekend out of it, before temperatures soar and summer travel season kicks into high gear. Here are three winning options:
The City: Cincinnati
The Race: The Flying Pig, May 2
Pardon the pig metaphors, but you’re sure to squeal with delight over this race, which offers 5K, 10K and full marathon distances. Cincinnati goes hog wild for the event, with volunteers – called grunts – at every few feet of the course, which features panoramic views of the city. (And if that’s not enough motivation, there are 50 entertainment acts.) At the “finish swine” a mascot greets runners, all of whom get a double-sided flying pig medal.
Training Tip: Not quite brave enough to do a practice run with pig ears? Purchase other pig paraphernalia at the Flying Pig Store.
Travel Tip: The race website offers several online-only discounts until April 2.
Kentucky’s hippest hotel, just voted by Conde Nast Traveler’s readership as #1 in the country (and #6 in the world) for 2009, announced plans Wednesday to debut a new sister property just upriver in Cincinnati, Ohio. The 21c Museum Hotel, an upscale boutique which opened on downtown Louisville’s Main Street in 2006, has played a key role in revitalizing Derby City’s art scene. The renovated 19th-century tobacco & bourbon warehouse has drawn national acclaim for its high-style halls packed to the brim with whimsical paintings, abstract video art, photos and sculptures (like the lobby’s army of red penguin statues) – all from this millennium. The hotel’s 90 rooms feature custom touches, from furniture to pewter mint julep cups. Popular restaurant Proof on Main has become renowned for its modern twists on locally grown, regional cuisine (ahem, gourmet Bison burgers). Read more
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