SUMMER ROAD TRIPS!
by Donna Johns
Ah, the call of the open road on a sunny summer day! Nothing is more enticing than the great American road trip. Of course, the ultimate road trip is cross-country but with high gas prices, you may want to think smaller. And if you love the arts, nothing could be better than a road trip to the Berkshires. Museums, music, dance and theater abound during the summer season.
Put the app TodayTix on your phone or tablet to help plan your trip. The app has a Berkshires button which will list multiple weekends and highlight some of the productions you might miss by just looking at Tanglewood, Jacob’s Pillow and Shakespeare and Company websites. Choose your weekend and then scroll through. Not only is TodayTix convenient but it is also a great venue to snag deeply discounted tickets.
That said, don’t miss the chance to see Shakespeare & Company’s production of As You Like It (August 9 to September 2). Performed in the outdoor Roman Garden Theater, you will be transported to the forest of Arden for a magical night. Bring your bug spray and prepare to be enchanted.
Up for a road trip but not too keen about driving? Stroll down Turner St. to the commuter rail, travel to North Station, and grab the Amtrak Downeaster train to Portland ME. This is a bargain at $58 round trip, and the scenery along the way is special. In under 3 hours, you will be in Portland with enough time to enjoy the lobster stew at DiMillo’s on the Water, a boat tour of Casco Bay, and a bit of shopping or bar hopping before catching the train home.
If your bunions are barking or you threw your back out weeding the garden or your old jalopy has 200,000 miles on the odometer or it’s just too darn hot to leave the house, you can take an armchair road trip. Here are a few of my favorites:
The Leisure Seeker, coming soon to rent/buy. Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland play a couple taking one last road trip in their old RV. A bittersweet comedy meticulously played for laughs, not pathos.
On the Road, available on DVD and Sundance Channel. Based on the Jack Kerouac novel. A young would-be writer encounters some interesting characters during his road trip. The result is a little uneven but captures the spirit of the 1950’s.
Little Miss Sunshine, available on DVD and rental. A delightfully eccentric family hitS the road to enter their little girl in a beauty pageant.
National Lampoon’s Vacation, available on DVD and rental. The Griswalds’ trip to a theme park doesn’t go as planned. Wonderful physical humor by Chevy Chase makes this a classic.
I could go on, but I bet you have your own favorite road trip movies. Share them in comments!
Whatever road trip you choose–be safe, use sun screen, don’t forget to hydrate, and have a wonderful time. Bolli After Dark will be back in August to preview the fall season.
Donna Johns is a teacher/librarian, writer of unpublished romance novels, sometime director of community theater, and new BOLLI member. She now has two fantastic faux knees which set off the metal detectors at Fenway Park.