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Rundown for the Week of June 6, 2003

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Queens in the Kingdom Interview with Magic Kingdom experts Eddie Shapiro and Jeffrey Epstein

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This weekend is the annual "Gay Day" event at Disney World in Orlando. It's a big deal, as 120,000 gays and lesbians travel in from all over the world to experience the park. Savvy Traveler host Diana Nyad goes on a hilarious romp through California's Disneyland with the two guys who started "Gay Day" there, Jeffrey Epstein and Eddie Shapiro. Their new book is called "Queens in the Kingdom: The Ultimate Gay and Lesbian Guide to the Disney Theme Parks." And, since they've been on some of the rides hundreds of times, they're expert guides through the Magic Kingdom -- regardless of your orientation. They say it's all about feeling like you're included in a place where everyone feels like they belong.

Online resources:
Eddie Shapiro and Jeffrey Epstein's book Queens in the Kingdom: The Ultimate Gay and Lesbian Guide to the Disney Theme Parks is available for purchase on Amazon.com. Your purchase helps support the Savvy Traveler.
www.gayday2.com: The official Web site for The Unofficial Gay Days at Disneyland
www.gaydayswest.com: Gay Day amusement park events in Southern California
www.gayday.com/otherevents/: Gay Day amusement park events nationwide

Hike to Rock Creek Park by Katie Davis

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As much as we like to take exotic trips on the show, explore foreign cultures, we also like to take the Mark Twain approach to travel, which goes something like: "You can take an epic journey right in your own back yard -- all you need is a great tree to climb and your imagination." Producer Katie Davis definitely operates within the "sometimes a short trip can become an epic journey" frame of mind. Katie directs a summer camp in her neighborhood in Washington, D.C., and her goal is to give local kids this sense of travel without having to go too far from home.

Also by Katie Davis
Click A Trip to the Corner Store (from 5/3/2002)

You can contact Katie directly at Kdavisdc@aol.com if you'd like more information about her organization, Urban Rangers.

Storm at the Summit by Hal Humphreys

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Contributor Hal Humphreys had a number of mountain peaks notched on his climbing belt even before he thought about attempting the ascent of Wheeler Peak, New Mexico's highest mountain, with some seasoned mountain adventures. But as the clouds thickened, the thunder boomed and winds began to gust during their climb, they realized that no matter how strong and experienced you are, Mother Nature will tell you what you can and can't do on any given day -- and on that day, she stood in the way of their journey.

Online resources
www.wilderness.net: Wheeler Peak Wilderness Web site
groups.google.com: Wheeler Peak postings on climbing newsgroups
www.nps.gov/grba/: The official Web site of Great Basin National Park

Tea with Nana by Hank Rosenfeld

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While stories have led the headlines for some time about the tragedy between Israel and Palestine, there is some hope now that travel to this part of the world could be back on the list of popular destinations one day. Hopefully, the recent efforts of diplomacy will bring peace to the area. Reporter Hank Rosenfeld took a trip to Israel about 10 years ago and stayed at a kibbutz with a friend. As Hank said, "We carried no money, we all ate together, wore each others clothes, and basically enjoyed a brief socialist dream working together in the banana fields." His portrayal of Israel in more peaceful times is what we all wish would come to pass on a permanent basis.

Previously aired on May 3, 2002
Tea with Nana: script and original auido

Other stories by Hank include:
Freestylers and Freeloaders, Hank's Crime Drama, Voice of Peace and Remembering Pearce,

Music with Bob Duskis Bill Frisell and Midival Punditz

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Bob Duskis, co-founder of Six Degrees Records in San Francisco, is our world music guide. This week, he joins us with sounds from Bill Frisell, one of the most innovative guitarists and collaborators in the world, and Midival Punditz, a group from India that expertly fuses classical Indian music with modern dance and electronica.

Click here for more info. about the artists

Like to purchase this music on PRMS?
Bill Frisell, Intercontinentals
Midival Punditz, Midival Punditz
Purchases help support The Savvy Traveler

Summer Books Interview with Nikki Whittaker, buyer for Left Bank Books in St. Louis, Missouri

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Summer travel season is here, and for many travelers, no trip is complete without a great book packed in the carryon. Whether it's a light, frothy novel to read on the beach or serious literature to pass the time in a hotel room, a good book can add a special spark to any vacation. What are travelers reading these days? Savvy Traveler host Diana Nyad talks with Nikki Whittaker, the buyer for one of the country's best independent bookstores, Left Bank Books in St. Louis. She tells us what makes a good summer travel book, the trends in summer travel reading, and she has a list of must-read summer travel books with her.

The books mentioned are available at Amazon.com (links below)
Paul Bowles, The Sheltering Sky; Dave Eggers, You Shall Know Our Velocity; Brian Hall, I Should Be Extremely Happy In Your Company: A Novel of Lewis and Clark; John Lanchester, The Debt to Pleasure; Paul Theroux, Dark Star Safari : Overland from Cairo to Cape Town; Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez, The Dirty Girls Social Club: A Novel; Lauren Weisberger, The Devil Wears Prada.
Your purchase helps support The Savvy Traveler

Sound Travels One Man Banda, Paris Metro

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Sound travels," the part of our show when we travel with just our ears as our guide, takes us to Paris -- where we discover there is no quality control of busking. Sometimes, you luck out and you see a truly amazing street performer acting out a Shakespearian scene or playing a concerto on violin. And sometimes, you get what Jake Warga heard on the Paris Metro: a $10 Casiotone, a tambourine and the worst version of "La Cucaracha" France has ever heard.

Other Sound Travels
Camel Races in Mali, West Africa; Bells of Arcosanti, Arizona; "Yungas" Music, Coroico, Bolivia ; Naxi Orchestra, northeast China; Homage to Otha Turner / Rio Carnival, Brazil

Traveler's Aid The Concorde, a primer

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As the Concorde is going the way of the trans-Atlantic steamer now, Savvy Traveler host Diana Nyad talks with Joe Sharkey, business travel columnist for "The New York Times," about its history, the culture and class dynamics aboard the plane, and what ultimately ended its run. Joe gives his thoughts on how he feels about seeing it go and whether travelers will miss the Concorde, the last vestige of true "High Society Cocktail Culture."

Online resource
www.nytimes.com: Archive of Joe's articles on The New York Times Web site (registration required)

Deal of the Week Rock-Bottom Airfare + Hotel to the Far East

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While the SARS has put a dent in travel plans to Asia for many, as the virus begins to subside, our Travel-Expert-in-Residence Rudy Maxa has found some great package deals that include airfare and accommodations to get you there on the cheap. Click here for details and link information

Deal information:
Go-Today.com offers attractive packages to Japan and Thailand. The Tokyo or Tokyo/Kyoto packages are for travel between July 1 and July 25, 2003. The Bangkok package is good only through June 30. Details: (425) 487-9632, but save $20 by booking online at www.go-today.com.

Pacific Delight Tours' 2-for-1 Japan packages must be booked by June 10th for travel between July 25 to 31. Its 7-day tours to Bangkok, Hong Kong and Shanghai are valid through Christmas day and must be booked by Dec. 20. Learn more by calling (800) 221-7179, or visiting www.PacificDelightTours.com.

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