From sea to shining sea, the good ol’ US of A is filled with opportunity, innovation, and stuff that’s just plain silly. If your family needs a vacation out of the ordinary, check out these wacky summer celebrations. Have the camera ready, because these are precious moments that are sure to bring you laughs for years to come.
Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest
This contest is held every July 4th at the original Nathan’s in Coney Island. Eleven regional champs and four international champs have twelve minutes to munch as many dogs as possible. As un-American as it seems, last year’s victor is Hirofumi Nakajima of Japan, who downed 24 1/2 dogs.
The best digs near Coney Island are amongst the smartly kept brownstones in Brooklyn. Check out this simple and chic apartment with room for 7. A full kitchen and completely updated amenities are exactly what your family needs to stay comfy in the Big Apple. You’ll be a short walk to the metro in this Stuyvesant Heights Historic District vacation rental.
Gilroy Garlic Festival
This wacky food fest is in its 33rd year! California is totally about the food, and this festival is certain to please if you’re traveling this way the last weekend of July. In addition to many tasty treats, your family can enjoy cook-offs, a children’s area, and a photo op with the newly crowned Miss Gilroy Garlic. Yes, they have a pageant to celebrate garlic. Contestants are judged by a panel of five judges on personal interview, talent, garlic speech, and evening gown. If all this savory snacking has you worried about romance with the spouse later, have no fear! Scope mouth wash is a banner sponsor of the event.
Whether you need a spot to air out or party on, this ocean front home in Monterey Bay is exactly what you’re looking for. You’ll have a patio to dine al fresco while watching perfect Pacific sunsets. An outdoor hot tub in a perfectly landscaped beach front garden, and hotel style furnishings make this the vacation home rental that you’ll want to come back to. Other family-friendly extras include a ping pong table, a covered porch, outdoor fire pit, 3 full bathrooms, 3 flat screen TVs, and a well stocked library complete with games and poker chips.
The Great Texas Mosquito Festival
The town of Clute, Texas opens its arms for the chewing the last weekend in July for this itchy sounding festival. If you’ve got a competitive streak, this festival is for you. Some of the contests include the delicious fajita cook off, the “Skeater Beaters” baby crawling contest, and even a Mosquito Calling contest (for those interested in attracting more biters).
Head back to your home away from home for calamine and anti-histamines in this gorgeous Victorian home. It has been completely restored to its historic charm and beauty yet with modern amenities and comforts. Sleep in one of the over-sized Victorian poster beds or relax on the settee on the over 1000 square feet of porch. The ocean is just across the way. You’ll get to bask in the salt air like a turn of the 20th century debutant or gentleman.