15 Festive Ways To Embrace The Fall Season With Arms Wide Open

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Photo Credit: Wild Alaska Art – Dan Twitchell

Fall is one of the most magical times of the year on The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground. The morning air is crisp and fresh, the fall foliage surrounds you down every road you drive, the sunsets are electric, the alpenglow’s are magnificent, the pumpkin flavored treats are utterly delicious and the cozy moments spend indoors are filled with nostalgic moments.

Photo Credit: David L. Brown

Photo Credit: David L. Brown

1 – Get outside and spend the day hiking and soaking in the fall foliage.

Photo Credit: Sujohn Das, Flickr

Photo Credit: Sujohn Das, Flickr

2 – Enjoy the final days of RV season and enjoy an overnighter. A mini road trip from Seward to Homer (while stopping in every town along the way) is the best way to drink life in.

Photo Credit: State of Alaska - Michael DeYoung

Photo Credit: State of Alaska – Michael DeYoung

3 – Wet some lines and enjoy the spectacular scenery, without the ‘combat fishing’ mayhem.

Photo Credit: Drifter's Lodge

Photo Credit: Drifter’s Lodge

4 – Take a day trip along the Seward or Sterling Highway and stop at all the pull outs to take in the epic views.

Photo Credit: Photographer Unknown

Photo Credit: Photographer Unknown

5 – Treat your fur babies to as many outings as possible before the snow flies and their paws can’t handle the trek without booties.

Photo Credit: Dana Orlosky - Flickr

Photo Credit: Dana Orlosky – Flickr

6 – Hop on the Alaska Railroad for a day of rest and relaxation, and enjoy off-the-grid views along the way.

Photo Credit: Tonia Burrough

Photo Credit: Tonia Burrough

7 – Rent a public use cabin on The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground and unplug for the night. If you prefer to have some more frills and creature comforts, take advantage of the awesome shoulder season prices that are available now at hospitality spots all over the Kenai Peninsula.

Photo Credit: Recreation.gov

Photo Credit: Recreation.gov

8 – Enjoy wildlife viewing and watch as the bears fatten up before heading into hibernation.

Photo Credit: Heidi Ho Hanson

Photo Credit: Heidi Ho Hanson

9 – Go biking in the backcountry and cover as much (stunningly beautiful) ground as possible.

10 – Chase as many sunsets as humanly possible. Even if you loose a little sleep, you will NEVER regret it.

Photo Credit: Anik Martin

Photo Credit: Anik Martin

11 – As the temperature continues to drop, use every excuse possible to make a fire and have a cozy night in. Don’t forget the snacks, movies and soft blankets!

Photo Credit: Scott Schiller - Flickr

Photo Credit: Scott Schiller – Flickr

12 – It’s the season for ‘all things’ pumpkin spice, so indulge a little wontcha! 😉

Photo Credit: The Moose Is Loose - Facebook

Photo Credit: The Moose Is Loose – Facebook

13 – If the forecast calls for a Northern Lights show, stay up late and soak it in. Being tired the next day will be worth it after you lay eyes on the Aurora Borealis in action.

Photo Credit: Vaughn Johnson Photography

Photo Credit: Vaughn Johnson Photography

14 – If it’s chilly or gloomy, have fun by visiting places like the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage or the Alaska Sealife Center in Seward. Fun for the whole family!

Photo Credit: Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center - Facebook

Photo Credit: Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center – Facebook

15 – It’s okay to blend in with the crowd. Sometimes ‘status quo’ just feels way too good to ignore. The warm and fuzzies that remind you of childhood should be celebrated as often as possible. Soak in the magic of the season by doing all the traditional favorites that spark a major dose of nostalgia – and love every single minute of it!

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Need more ideas to keep you busy this fall on The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground? Leave a comment below or feel free to shoot us a personal Facebook message.

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Celebrate Love on Alaska’s Playground

The three day weekend is right around the corner, and in addition to President’s Day on Monday… don’t forget that it’s Valentines Day on Sunday, February 14, 2016! Which means you have the perfect excuse to spend the whole day celebrating life, love and happiness with your special sweetheart or with those friends and family members that are near and dear to your heart.

Photo shared from encircleworldphotos.photoshelter.com.

Photo shared from encircleworldphotos.photoshelter.com.

Maybe you aren’t someone who necessarily cares for the Valentines Day holiday? We get it. The infamous flowers, chocolates and life-sized stuffed animal “hoopla” that surrounds us all for weeks leading up to the holiday can be a bit too much to handle.

Photo from theplanetd.com.

Photo from theplanetd.com.

Fear not… you’re in luck! We have some great alternative options for those of you wanting to celebrate LOVE this Sunday while still enjoying The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground and supporting local businesses.

First things first; seize every moment of this long weekend. You know you’ll regret it if you don’t. So get up early and chase a sunrise. Your eyes will thank you, we promise.

Sunrise over Beluga Lake, in Homer, Alaska. Photo from Laura Maciariello.‎

Sunrise over Beluga Lake, in Homer, Alaska. Photo from Laura Maciariello.

If you’re like us, and you want to start the weekend off on Friday or Saturday with a yummy breakfast treat, it is always a satisfying experience when stopping into Veronicas Coffee House in Kenai, Alaska. Serving delicious baked goods, fresh coffee and an assortment of menu options, Veronicas Coffee House offers the perfect Alaskan charm and warm hospitality to get your love-filled weekend started off right. Its also a great place to bring the whole family or to meet up with old friends.

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If you want to get out of town and into the backcountry, snowshoeing is always a great way to spend quality time with the one or one(s) you love. And on Alaska’s Playground, we truly do have an unlimited amount of backcountry to explore.

Cross country skiing is another great way to get a great workout together while also enjoying the fresh air and natural beauty that Alaska’s Playground has to offer.

Photo from edbookphoto.photoshelter.com.

Photo from edbookphoto.photoshelter.com.

Horseback riding is always a fun activity to get you out of town and exploring nature with your sweetheart, the kiddos or a group of your closest friends. Alaskan Horseman Trail Adventures and Guest Ranch in Cooper Landing, Alaska is a great option for anyone wanting a true taste of fresh winter air and views that are bound to take your breath away.

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If you have a need for speed and enjoy a good adrenaline rush, maybe snow-machining is the perfect activity for you and your special somebody to celebrate Valentines Day this Sunday. On The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground, you are always guaranteed incredible vistas no matter which direction you head.

Photo from flipboard.com.

Photo from flipboard.com.

And if snow-machining is what you choose and you happen to head south, our friends at Freddie’s Roadhouse located in the Caribou Hills in Ninilchik, Alaska offer excellent backcountry accommodations for all outdoorsy enthusiasts. If rustic lodging and a true Alaskan experience is what you are after this weekend, this is a great option for you!

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Another way to enjoy an adrenaline-packed weekend together is by heading to Girdwood, Alaska to visit the infamous Alyeska Resort. Great for snowboarding, downhill skiing, dining, live music and loads of fun for all ages. Oh, and the sunsets and sunrises seem to be notoriously amazing at Alyeska Resort as well. You really can’t go wrong when heading to this magical place for a weekend.

Photo from last Valentines Day 2015 at Alyeska Resort.

Photo from last Valentines Day 2015 at Alyeska Resort.

Chasing a sunset via ATV ride is a great way to spend quality time together this Valentines Day. The photo below was taken in Homer, Alaska off East End Road. God’s country at it’s finest!

Photo from Loomis Sage Marketing.

Photo from Loomis Sage Marketing.

If you are in the market for a romantic getaway this weekend, head to the lovely town of Seward, Alaska and check out the spectacular A Cabin on the Cliff. This is a rustic trappers cabin that has been refurbished to offer romantic elegance. Here you can enjoy spectacular views of Ressurection Bay and the Chugach Mountains from a private hot tub located on a large, spacious deck.

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Another place to enjoy a quite, secluded romantic getaway is the beautiful Escape for Two B&B Cabin Rentals in Soldotna, Alaska. Have a fire, relax in the hot tub or just get cozy indoors and enjoy a glass of wine. You will feel utterly relaxed from the moment you check in.

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Enjoying a glass of wine together and some local Alaskan chocolates is a cliché Valentines Day option, but hey… you have to admit that it sounds like a pretty incredible idea. And when you visit Bear Creek Winery & Lodging in Homer, Alaska- you will feel anything but cliché. This place is miraculous! Bear Creek is a country winery. They make fruit wines and fruit grape wine blends. They grow, pick, and process some of the best berries in the world and it shows in their hand crafted, award winning wines. Guests are invited to visit the wine tasting room, tour the facility, walk the gardens and take in the breathtaking views of Kachemak Bay. The winery also offers high-end lodging for those visitors looking for a relaxing and romantic getaway.

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If fine dining is what you are after, Hotel Seward in Seward, Alaska is proven to be an excellent option. Offering steak, fresh Alaskan seafood and a plethora of other options. Check the Hotel Seward menu out HERE and prepare to have your mouth start watering.

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Mykel’s Restaurant in Soldotna, Alaska is another great option if you are after a delicious meal this Valentines Day weekend. We’ve heard through the grapevine that they’ve whipped up a special heart-melting menu for this weekend, so don’t miss out. Check their menu out HERE and be sure to call and make your reservations now. Remember, the way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach.

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And if you’re spending time with the kiddos this Valentines Day weekend, we have a couple great ideas that sure to bring a plethora of smiles. The Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center near the town of Girdwood, Alaska is dedicated to conservation, education, and quality animal care of Alaska’s wildlife. Open currently on weekends only, come view Alaskan wildlife in large natural enclosures, which allow the wildlife the ability to display their natural behaviors.

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The Alaska Sealife Center in Seward, Alaska is always fun for kids and adults of all ages. Spend the day viewing beautiful marine life with the indoor comfort of being nice and cozy.

Photo shared from mishlerphotos.photoshelter.com.

Photo shared from mishlerphotos.photoshelter.com.

Or if you want to bundle the kiddos up and take them outside for a fun, winter-wonderland adventure, sledding is always a great idea that will bring adorable pink cheeks and smiles from ear to ear. You can even bring your beloved four-legged family members to join in on a day of fun in the great outdoors.

Photo shared from www.shutterstock.com.

Photo shared from http://www.shutterstock.com.

Need more ideas for how to make your Valentines Day weekend memorable? Submit a response or question below. Remember that you can always call us at (907) 262-5229 or visit us online at http://www.kenaipeninsula.org. Wishing you all a wonderful, love-filled weekend on The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground!

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50 Days of Fun & Sun on The Kenai

Photo from Srini Sundarrajan in Kenai Fjords National Park - Seward, AK.

Photo from Srini Sundarrajan in Kenai Fjords National Park – Seward, AK.

How will you enjoy the final 50 days of summer!? That’s right… only 50 days remaining. It’s crazy how fast it’s already flown by. Sigh, (insert tear shedding here.) Okay, moving on… chin up buttercup! Time is a wasting and there are many, many things to smile about!

Photo from Brian Moore overlooking the Kenai Flats to Cook Inlet.

Photo from Brian Moore overlooking the Kenai Flats to Cook Inlet.

The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground truly does offer an endless amount of incredible outdoor activities. And although us residents find a plethora of activities to keep us happily entertained all year long, the summer months are highly cherished an always have a way of leaving us wanting more. Summertime opens up so many opportunities for locals and visitors alike to get outside and enjoy the natural splendor of Alaska. Tons of fun, lots of smiles and lifelong memories with friends and family. From mountains, to glaciers, to wildlife, to our amazing fisheries… the Kenai Peninsula has it all.

Photo from Carl Johnson in Portage Valley Alaska, Chugach National Forest.

Photo from Carl Johnson in Portage Valley Alaska, Chugach National Forest.

Maybe it’s the land of the midnight sun during the summer months that has its way of kicking us into gear and often time keeps us going for 18 to 20 hours a day. As us locals say, “we can sleep during the winter time!” Whatever it is, we love it. And we are sure that you do to! But just incase you need some ideas to help you seize every lasting moment of summer on The Kenai, read on for some great ideas…

Photo from Jeff Nelson on The Kenai, Alaska's Playground.

Photo from Jeff Nelson on The Kenai, Alaska’s Playground.

Go horseback riding! Enjoying the fresh air and incredible sights is always better when you have great friends and a beautiful horse to bond with.

Bardy's Trail Rides in Seward, Alaska.

Bardy’s Trail Rides in Seward, Alaska.

Take a float, just don’t tip the boat (brrr)! 😉 Floating down the Kenai River near Cooper Landing is always a glorious way to spend a beautiful day on Alaska’s Playground.

Photo from Eugen Marculescu on the Kenai River.

Photo from Eugen Marculescu on the Kenai River.

Go zip-lining with Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures in Seward, AK. This exhilarating adventure is fun for all ages!

Photo from Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures in Seward, AK.

Photo from Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures in Seward, AK.

Climb a mountain! The view from the top is always worth the trek. “Climb mountains not so the world can see you, but so you can see the world.”

Beautiful photo in Lake Clark National Park & Preserve.

Beautiful photo in Lake Clark National Park & Preserve.

Get in touch with your adventurous side and go Kiteboarding! Homer, AK is an excellent spot to enjoy this spontaneous activity.

Beautiful photo at Mariner Park in Homer, AK from Kite Surf Atlas.

Beautiful photo at Mariner Park in Homer, AK from Kite Surf Atlas.

Cool off like the bears! Beat the heat by taking a dip in one of the Kenai Peninsula’s many rivers, lakes or streams.

Photo from Heidi Ho Hanson.

Photo from Heidi Ho Hanson.

SUP! That’s “Stand Up Paddleboarding” to you. Have you tried it?  If not, you absolutely should. Need more convincing? Just LOOK at the image below. Utterly breathtaking.

Photo from Liquid Adventures at Bear Glacier in Seward, AK.

Photo from Liquid Adventures at Bear Glacier in Seward, AK.

Find a waterfall and enjoy an impromptu photo-op. Or read a good book with the sound of the waterfall crashing down in the background. Because, why not?

Tanalian Falls in Lake Clark National Park & Preserve. Photo from Tom Tessier.

Tanalian Falls in Lake Clark National Park & Preserve. Photo from Tom Tessier.

Go surfing! Catch a wave and cool off in style while enjoying the beautiful mountain views on Alaska’s Playground.

Amazing adventure shot from Scott Dickerson Photography.

Amazing adventure shot from Scott Dickerson Photography.

Dog days of summer! Load up your furry companions and enjoy a fishing adventure together. We have a feeling your four legged best friend will sleep GREAT for about a week… 😉

Great photo from Marissa Tomaganuk shared from The Alaska Life Facebook page.

Great photo from Marissa Tomaganuk shared from The Alaska Life Facebook page.

Catch a reflection! Do you see it below? Look again. Pretty amazing, huh?

Great photo Katie Russ, "People's Choice" winner of Lake Clark National Park & Preserve's 2015 photo contest.

Great photo Katie Russ, “People’s Choice” winner of Lake Clark National Park & Preserve’s 2015 photo contest.

Load up the kiddos and get up close & personal with some incredible marine animals.

Photo from Megan at the Alaska Sealife Center in Seward, AK.

Photo from Megan at the Alaska Sealife Center in Seward, AK.

Stay up late enough to catch a sunset! Trust us, it is worth it every time. Every. Single. Time.

Beautiful fireweed in front of Lake Parsons, Nikiski, Alaska. Photo from RMEVET Photography.

Beautiful fireweed in front of Lake Parsons, Nikiski, Alaska. Photo from RMEVET Photography.

Remember… wherever you go, go with all of your heart. ❤

Photo of the Kenai River from Mark Pierson Photography.

Photo of the Kenai River from Mark Pierson Photography.