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  1. Archway (Photo by Richie Holbert)

    The Great Platte River Road Archway: Kearney, Nebraska

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    This summer we crossed the Plains through Nebraska, following the famed pioneer trail along the Platte River. We traveled west from St. Louis, skirted around Kansas City, and passed through a small slice of Iowa, where sunflowers grow wild in the fence rows and the dirt is black as coffee grounds.

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  2. Hotel for Book Lovers: Portland, Oregon

    Hotel for Book Lovers: Portland, Oregon

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    It's always a good idea to read a book – do people even do that anymore? I think the Baby Boomers still do! If you fit that bill, then I have a great place for you to check out. It's the Heathman Hotel in downtown Portland, Oregon. Located a few blocks from the Riverfront, 2 blocks from the Max Light Rail Train and darn near all the great shops, restaurants and galleries that this city has to offer, this hotel has 150 rooms and something else that is quite unique – a library, and not just any library. They house a “collection of 2,700 books signed by authors who have been guests at the hotel including past presidents, poet laurites and Pulitzer Prize winners.” The Library is open 24 hours a day and every Monday-Thursday from 5:00-6:00PM, you can attend an evening social for reading and complimentary wine.

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  3. Cannery Pier Hotel: Astoria, Oregon

    Cannery Pier Hotel: Astoria, Oregon

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    A unique hotel built on a pier jutting into the Columbia River in Astoria Oregon, the Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa is built on the site of the Union Fish Cannery 600 feet into the river. The hotel offers magnificent views into the environs of a working river including views out to Cape Disappointment Lighthouse and nearby Washington. Each room has a private balcony out to the river.

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  4. California Highway 1 Discovery Route Part Four

    California Highway 1 Discovery Route Part Four

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    With a full stomach and an armload of cookies, I headed back on the California Highway 1 Discovery Route for the town of Harmony, population 18. It took about 15 minutes from Cayucos, with more amazing scenery along the way. So, what does one do in Harmony – why, go wine tasting at the Harmony Cellars! www.HarmonyCellars.com Michael Rice greeted me in the Tasting Room for a marvelous selection of their red, white and dessert wines. They were all flavorful and reasonably priced. You can go out on their grounds sitting high up in the hills and have a picnic as you enjoy a bottle of wine. They host dinners and special events throughout the year, so be sure and check their website before you visit. Photos from the vineyard are pictured above. If you have time before you leave, stop by Harmony Glassworks, an art gallery and studio that is worth a visit.

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  5. Chief Seattle in early summer

    Finding Zen in the Woods: Tipi Village Retreat, Oregon

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    We live in a hectic world where the days seem to fly by at warp speed and we tend to miss some of the beauty that surrounds us, but I found a spot where time stands still and nature stands out. Join me as I take you to Mohawk Valley, just outside Eugene, Oregon to the Tipi Village Retreat.

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  6. Local scenery

    The Oxford Hotel: Bend, Oregon

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    The Oxford Hotel in Bend, Oregon is a boutique hotel that focuses on making your stay a memorable experience. Bend is located 128 miles east of Eugene in the central part of the state, right in the middle of Oregon mountain country and near to Mt. Bachelor. The hotel offers amenities not found in the other hotels in the area. The Oxford is located in the middle of the downtown historic district of Bend.

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  7. Country Cat

    The Country Cat: Portland, Oregon

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    Who does not love to talk about juicy, yummy fried chicken? Adam and Jackie, owners of this fun place do and so do I. This was and is their dream. I have a feeling their two dreamy sons love their dad’s chicken a lot!

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  8. Pet friendly cabins

    Five Pine Lodge & Spa: Sisters, Oregon

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    Another pet friendly property that was brought to Susie’s attention is the Five Pine Lodge & Spa in Sisters, Oregon. Five Pine is also a Conference Center with room for varying sized meetings.

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  9. At Powell's

    The Day Allan Died or Is Beloved Cozy Mystery Author Joanne Fluke a MURDERER??

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    At any rate, the official Launch of “Blackberry Pie Murder” was at Powell’s Cedar Creek Crossing in Beaverton, Oregon. This is a really cool bookstore and… can you say a really big bookstore? It is almost 3,500 square feet of pure delight: filled with half-a-MILLION books and Book accessories, and if that weren’t enough, many other strange and wonderful things that you never KNEW that you needed, but for which you have been desperately searching for YEARS.

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  10. Joanne Fluke

    Day 1: Portland, Oregon - Staying at the Westin- Alder Street hotel is such a rough way to travel…

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    Being on the 19th (Penthouse) floor; the water seems hotter, the maid service faster and even the soap seems frothier than the norm. After traveling to the hotel in style via Media Escort, we were treated to express check- in and rapidly whisked up to our rooms, where the management had laid out a welcoming spread of cheese, crackers and Willamette Valley Pinot Gris for our favorite author-who also happens to be my mom- Joanne Fluke. 

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  11. The Allison Inn & Spa

    The Allison Inn & Spa: Newberg, Oregon

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    Looking for an incredible place to enjoy luxury accommodations for both you and your pet, the Allison Inn & Spa in Oregon’s Willamette Valley is a great place to stay. The Inn is listed as one of the top pet friendly hotels in the United States.  There is a one-time fee of $50 per pet whether you stay a night, weekend or spend a week enjoying the Spa and Oregon’s wine country.

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  12. Paleys Place

    Paleys Place Bistro: Portland, Oregon

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    This is a 50 seat French restaurant in the beautiful historic part of the city. Owners Vitaly and Kim Paley have turned this Victorian home into a true award winner.

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  13. Wine Country Farm

    Wine Country Farm: Dayton, Oregon

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    Wines from the United States are getting more and more recognition and they're not just from California. Case in point is the Wine Country Farm in Dayton, Oregon. They are located about one hour from the city of Portland in the beautiful Willamette Valley. This historic Bed and Breakfast is a 100 year old estate that sits at the top of a hill with gorgeous views of the Valley and the Cascade Mountains. You are right in the middle of their vineyard and within walking distance of several other wineries in the area.

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  14. Weird Soda Quest

    Richie's Top Ten Tips for RV Travel

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    Whether you’re in a Luxury Class A or towing a Vintage Pop-Up, here are some nifty tricks to make your RV trip more enjoyable.

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  15. Exterior of the Herbfarm

    The Herbfarm: Woodinville, Washington

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    I am so excited to write about this true treasure. It is about 20 minutes outside of beautiful Seattle and is rated one of the top 40 restaurants and the top 10 in America. That says it all!

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  16. Oregon Trail (Photo by Tim Holbert)

    Jackson Hole Camping

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    We set up camp at Jackson Hole Campground on the Moose-Wilson Road and celebrated with some frosty local beer purchased at the check-in office.

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  17. Cruising Pacific NW Wine Country on the American Empress

    Cruising Pacific NW Wine Country on the American Empress

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    Within Pacific Northwest Wine Country, the American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) of Washington and Oregon stretch over thousands and thousands of highly regarded wine-producing acres, but there is no need to trek across both states to experience each nuanced terrior. The elegant American Empress brings this world, the winemakers and cellar masters and their luscious wines to those aboard its “Vineyards, Vintages and Varietals” excursions.

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