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Things To Do

Must Do highlights day trips, fun activities, and entertainment and recreation options every tourist and local of Southern California should check out. SoCal’s hidden gems, local secrets, unique finds and off-the beaten path venues will also be uncovered and explored.

in Food & Drinks, Things To Do

Best Cheesecake Spots in SoCal

By Jessi Soporito   Despite what you may believe, good cheesecake does extend the Cheesecake Factory in your local mall. Don’t play it safe and instead hit up one of your local bakeries for some of the best slices of heaven you can find. Here are some of the best cheesecake spots to settle your sweet tooth in SoCal.   Hidden in Inglewood, Harriet’s Cheesecakes Unlimited offers over 60 different flavors of cheesecake, like Kahlua, Citrus Cooler and Pumpkin Praline. The handcrafted, gourmet cakes is a family business, so you know you’re not only getting freshly baked cheesecakes, but state-of-the-art service along with it. Stop by, before a long line keeps you in the heat, and enjoy the wide variety of flavors Harriet’s has to offer.   Rocco’s Cheesecake, in Santa Monica, has more of a messy, home-like vibe to it. The pink walls, matched with plaid black and white table cloths, pair well with a 50’s theme of home cooking. Mr. Rocco may even be there to greet you himself, and offer some gluten free and vegan options as well as gourmet, exotic and black label cakes.   Based in San Diego, Extraordinary Desserts also offers vegan and gluten…

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in Things To Do

Air Travel Etiquette: Five Major Don’ts for Sharing Cabin Space

Tips to Make Air Travel Tolerable The ability to afford air travel is a privilege. Although you may not consider a plane ticket as luxurious as a Louis Vuitton handbag, it is still a luxury that many cannot afford. For those of you that are lucky enough to afford air travel, there are a few issues that need to be addressed: 1. Don’t Forget the Headphones: Etiquette on Personal Electronic Devices With rules appointed by the FAA, you now have the ability to listen to your personal electronic device (PED) throughout the entire flight. While that is great for you, the rest of the plane may not share your enthusiasm for the latest episode of “Orange is the New Black”, or hit song from Jay-Z, while they are trying to sleep. Please be courteous and wear headphones while using your PEDs or if you do not have any headphones, you must turn your volume off. Keep in mind that not all airlines provide headphones, so please come prepared. 2. Don’t Be a Space Invader: Who Gets the Armrest? Picture this scenario: The last passenger to board is a small woman and the last seat on the plane is nestled between…

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in Food & Drinks, Things To Do

Health Conscious Winter Recipe

It’s hard to believe that we are already in the middle of November. I love this time of year for many reasons, not the least of which are the smells that surround us and the flavors that consume our palate.  So, naturally I’m thinking about all my favorite holiday dishes. This holiday creation is a family favorite and it’s too easy and healthy not to share. Caramelized Butternut Squash with Red Onions  Ingredients: 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed or cut in moons 2 large red onions, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced Sprigs of fresh rosemary  2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper (bruschetta seasoning is a great compliment) Directions: Position a rack in upper third of oven and preheat to 450°F. Combine squash and onion on a parchment-lined baking sheet or piece of foil. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss evenly to coat.  Spread in an even layer and scatter rosemary on top. Put baking sheet on top rack and reduce heat to 375°F. Roast, flipping vegetables once, until browned in spots, about 45 minutes. Serve warm or chilled – either way is delicious. This makes a beautiful…

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in Things To Do

LOVE Week Ideas

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it’s time to spoil your honey. We know you’re busy, so we came up with suggestions for the perfect V-Day gift. Whether you want to take your sweetheart out or pick up a thoughtful present, we have you covered. These last minute gift ideas are sure to excite your sweetie and will arrive before the big day. Best of luck and Happy Valentine’s Day!   First, there’s dinner: insideOUT’s urban oasis is the only place to spend Valentine’s Day in San Diego. Romantic dinner vibes coupled with special creations by Executive Chef MJ Testa and Creative Director of Wine & Spirits Moe Girton will elevate your evening and create memorable moments. insideoutsd.com/ You can also sweep your loved one off their feet and whisk them away for a romantic weekend at Palm Garden Hotel. The Valentine’s Day specials have you covered with a fabulous room, three-course dinner and breakfast. After dinner, cozy up by the fire and sip on champagne and indulge in chocolate covered strawberries. This is a V-Day you won’t forget.palmgardenhotel.com   You can’t forget the value of a great destination visit. Wine, flowers, horses and beautiful beaches. What more can…

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in Pets & Wildlife, Things To Do

Camping With Your Kiddos

By Maria del Cisne Vital   Camping is a great way to teach your kids the importance of the outdoors and to spend some quality time together. Ditch the technology, take in your surroundings, and become one with nature at these kid-friendly SoCal camping spots:   Black Rock Campground in Joshua Tree National Park One of two camping sites that can be reserved at Joshua Tree, Black Rock is a great place for family camping because of its beauty and accessibility. It is located on the edge of the park, and it lies within one of the thickest Joshua tree forests. It is ideal for RV camping, but also has amenities (showers and laundry) within five miles. Keep your eyes peeled for the elusive desert tortoise and other desert creatures! Waking up for an early morning hike will be a truly breath-taking experience for the whole family as you watch the sun rise over the desert. https://www.recreation.gov/camping/black-rock-campground/r/campgroundDetails.do?contractCode=NRSO&parkId=70953   Crystal Cove State Park’s Moro Campground Who needs a white noise app when you can get the real thing at Moro Campground? Fall asleep and wake up to the beautiful sounds of the Pacific at this campground. You can enjoy the beauty…

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SoCal’s Beachside Recreation Sites

By Lisa Kestenbaum   In California, we love our coastline. And dotting the Southland’s best beaches are some must-visit piers; from roller coaster rides to private bungalows, there is plenty to see and do at these often overlooked spots. Orange County is home to San Clemente Pier, where time seems to stand still and ocean waves crash on a pristine beach below.   Travelers on the Pacific Coastliner Amtrak train can board and depart at the pier, which feels like a time warp, between the Spanish Colonial design of the homes surrounding it and the 50s style surfer dudes. Pop into the Oyster Bar for a casual bite or catch the last slivers of sun as it goes down over the water. In San Diego, you can make an entire daytrip out of visiting the Coronado Ferry Landing. Filled with shops, galleries and restaurants, this strip inside the City of Coronado offers a great view of San Diego across the water. On the weekends, there are often live bands and every Tuesday, you can visit the Farmer’s Market. The Ferry Landing also offers bike and kayak tours, if you’re feeling adventurous or want to do something active. You can also visit…

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