A Weekend Stuffed with Holiday Fun
By Katrina Brown Hunt on Nov 8, 2016
Holidays at Pinehurst (Courtesy Pinehurst Resort)
Thinking of ditching the big turkey dinner with the in-laws and running away on vacation? You won’t be alone. Every Thanksgiving, families flock to kid-friendly resorts nationwide, leaving the cooking and cleaning to someone else. After all, with the kids out of school, it can be a wonderful opportunity for a long, unstressed weekend getaway an affordable rate. Here are just a few of the many resorts offering fun, activity-filled schedules over the long holiday weekend.
Where: Pinehurst, NC
Why: Because this hallowed golf resort is surprisingly kid-friendly, and Thanksgiving weekend offers myriad opportunities for families to have fun together. Available from November 20 through 27, their popular Thanksgiving Golf Package starting at just $285 includes a round of golf on your choice of courses, resort accommodations and our famous daily breakfast buffet. Non-golfing family members may prefer the traditional Thanksgiving Package with accommodations, breakfast and an array of activities for the entire family including skating under the pines, gingerbread house decorating, a magic show and more.
Otesaga Resort (Courtesy Otesaga Resort Hotel)
Where: Cooperstown, NY
Why: Because this historic hotel is offering a huge roster of activities for the whole family for Thanksgiving. There will be CoCo the clown appearances, family movie nights, holiday crafts, ginger house decorating, and other age-appropriate festivities. There will also be horse-drawn family hayrides through Cooperstown, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Santa is scheduled to make a special appearance at breakfast on Saturday morning. The two-night Thanksgiving Family Weekend package starts at $359 per person and includes lodging, activities, breakfast, and Thanksgiving feast for each guest, plus free WiFi and parking.
Room with a view and a fireplace at Squaw Creek (Courtesy Resort at Squaw Creek)
Where: Olympic Valley, CA
Why:Because during the long weekend, this Lake Tahoe resort will roll out its annual Magical Memories program with the Gingerbread Village Unveiling and Grand Tree Lighting ceremony. After enjoying a classic Thanksgiving buffet, families can take part in winter-themed activities such as Breakfast with Santa, Dine Out for Truckee Tahoe Humane Society, Dine Out for High Fives Foundation, Christmas Eve & Christmas Day Dinner, Kid’s Night Out New Year’s Eve Bash, and New Year’s Eve Grand Dinner & Celebration.
Winter at Sun Valley Resort (Courtesy Sun Valley Resort)
Where: Sun Valley, ID
Why: Because Thanksgiving marks the official kick-off to Sun Valley’s winter season and a celebration that has become a tradition among many skiing families. The resort has six adventure trails geared toward kids, a halfpipe, and two dozen features in the terrain park. You can also work up your appetite by ice skating, hiking, and snowshoeing—or stay warm inside with bowling, virtual golf, and movie showings in the resort’s theater. The four-night minimum Thanksgiving Package includes a delicious and lavish Thanksgiving buffet, 25% off lift tickets, lodging at the Sun Valley Inn, and one free kid’s lift ticket for every paying adult. Kids under 12 even ski for free!
Sawmill Creek Resort
Where: Sandusky, OH
Why: Because Thanksgiving weekend is the kick-off for the Festival of Lights at this Lake Erie resort. Families can take a hayride through the holiday lights display as they listen to Christmas classics, or they can drop in on Mrs. Claus for hot chocolate, cider, and donuts. Kids can go swimming in the indoor pool, walk the trails of the nature preserve, or head to the video game room. There will also be a corn-hole toss contest with wine and juice pops as prizes, a caricature artist, and Santa will be on hand passing out candy canes. The two-night Thanksgiving package, which starts at $289, includes a two night stay in a deluxe double (two consecutive nights), breakfast tickets (one per adult and good for only one morning), tickets to the annual Thanksgiving Day Brunch buffet (one per adult) and tickets to the annual Thanksgiving day hayride (one per adult, weather permitting).
Have a family bonfire with s’mores at Alta Crystal Resort (Courtesy Alta Crystal Resort)
Where: Greenwater, WA
Why: Because this family-friendly wilderness retreat is located near Mount Rainier National Park, just below Crystal Mountain, one of the state’s premier ski destinations. The holiday weekend starts off with crafts party on Wednesday, followed by a hike or snowshoe to Goat Falls on Thursday morning and the resort’s 19th Annual Thanksgiving bonfire with s’mores on Thursday night. Then on Friday night, families can come indulge their inner American Idol with a karaoke party. And lastly on Saturday night, it’s back to the bonfire pit for more s’mores. Book the four-night Thanksgiving Special from $289.99 a night for all these. Get Wednesday night for 1/2 off–and your Thanksgiving dinner FREE–when you stay 4 nights.
Where: Wheeling, WV
Why: Because this picturesque golf resort and spa is a mini-city in itself, with a planetarium, glass museum, and even a 30-acre zoo. Every November, the resort unveils its famous Festival of Lights, where 70 holiday-themed LED light displays can be viewed. The three-night Thanksgiving package starts at $469 and includes a welcome reception, daily Mountaineer Breakfast Buffet, a vehicle pass to the Festival of Lights, and many activities.
Where: Pismo Beach, CA
Why: Because this hotel perched high on the beach bluffs offers a compelling mix of mild temperatures, good rates and easy access to sights such as wine country, Hearst Castle, plus a local children’s museum and zoo. Festivities at the resort include a Thanksgiving Feast on Thursday at Marisol Restaurant, prepared by the talented Executive Chef Victor Flores; a cornucopia of house-baked desserts and holiday pies; and a complimentary wine reception each night in our ocean view lobby. The three-night Thanksgiving Family Vacation package are at $149 per night Sunday-Wednesday and $249 per night Thursday-Saturday. It include a complimentary freshly baked apple pie on the night of arrival for your own stash of leftovers.
Katrina Hunt Brown contributed this to MiniTime.