21 March 2018


is now published in the e-Review of Tourism Research (eRTR).

Abstract: Fright tourism is a lighter form of dark tourism. While similar elements of death and dying exist in both, fright tourism is a more entertaining version of the dark parent. Fright tourism occurs when a tourist seeks a scary opportunity for pleasure at a destination that may have a sinister history or may be promoted to have one. Since tourist motivation has been shown to be an important determinant of choice behavior, this research note explores the influence of fearful events in our world for a sample of spectators at a haunted attraction. Citing examples of crime, natural disasters, personal finances and others, a scale of fear is created.

Key words: fright tourism, dark tourism, haunted attractions, fear

20 March 2018

First Day of Spring

Equinox.  Yep, 12 hours of daylight and 12 of darkness.  The sun rises due east and sets in the west.  I am fortunate that my kitchen window faces east so as my coffee brews in the morning I can watch the sun rise.  A little bit to the south in the winter and a little bit to the north in the longer days of summer.  Watching the day unfold is one of my daily pleasures.

Besides navigation, the path of the sun is needed for my solar panel that charges the battery for a LED light on my wood pile.  Yesterday I observed the setting sun to make sure the panel gets enough light to charge, something really important when the leaves come out.

Oh yeah, we get our fourth nor'easter tomorrow dumping more snow on our region every 7 days, timed with cyclogenesis, the formation of an extratropical cyclone.  The longer daylight means it shouldn't be around too much.

16 March 2018

14 March 2018

11 March 2018

Curling in Vegas

Now that the World knows we are champs in Curling, plan to watch the teams on the ice in the desert!

See the promo here.

for ticket info and more info visit here.

07 March 2018

CFP: Spatial and Temporal Tourism Considerations in Liminal Landscapes

Tourism Geographies - Call for papersSpecial Issue On:  Spatial and Temporal Tourism Considerations in Liminal Landscapes

Guest Editors:
Robert S. Bristow, Westfield State University, Massachusetts, US
Ian S. Jenkins, University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland
Liminality has recently gained the growing attention from tourism scholars (Crouch, 2000; Preston-Whyte, 2004; Pritchard, & Morgan, 2006; Andrews & Roberts, 2012; Brooker & Joppe, 2014). The transitional time and space for the tourist experience is an important one to understand since it has a great impact on the overall encounter and experience.  Yet the sheer nature of liminality is generally so abstract that only recently has research attempted to explore the relationship in tourism. 
Liminality is anthropologically associated with Rites of Passage (van Gennep, 1960).  Turner (1974) and Shields (2013) refined liminality as the movement from one stage to another. Similar to a tourist experience, the chance to break away from the norms of daily life is an important aspect of tourism.   Liminality is a logical transition for tourists since they are leaving the comfort of home to travel crossing in time and space some threshold or boundary to some unknown experience.  This frequently reflects the period and space in the anticipation and travel to and from different phases of the experience (Clawson and Knetsch, 1966; White and White, 2004; Light 2009; and Lew, 2012). Contemporary literature calls this the “transit zone” for purposes of differentiating experiences of travel from those on-site (Hunter & Shaw, 2007). Even the recollection stage of the experience may reflect a liminal experience (Goodnow & Ruddell, 2009).
Recent paper sessions presented during the American Association of Geographers (Boston 2017) and Royal Geographic Society with the Institute of British Geographers (Cardiff 2018) illustrate the growing body of literature on the theme of liminality and landscapes.  This special issue of Tourism Geographies seeks to build on that research and presents an understanding of how liminality is experienced by the tourist.
For this special issue of Tourism Geographies, we invite papers that address liminality in tourism landscapes.  For tourists there are many opportunities to ‘transit’ from one state to another.  A classic example takes place in a hotel, where social norms are excused and atypical behavior may take place due to the anonymous nature of the tourist’s temporary visit (Pritchard & Morgan, 2006). Certain other landscapes challenge the visitor due to the anticipated experiences (Trudeau & McMorran, 2011; Mott & Roberts, 2014). The arts have also significantly contributed to a liminal experience (Jaimangal-Jones et al, 2010), and dark tourism landscapes have a marked edge in the experience (Lennon & Foley, 2000).
The Special Issue will address the research question of how do tourists observe and experience liminality.  Addressing this question will provide a more holistic insight into the tourist experience.  We invite papers that deal with aspects of liminal landscapes experienced by tourists including:
Urban, Rural and/or peripheral Landscapes
Dark Landscapes
Last Chance Landscapes
Marginalized Landscapes
Adventure Landscapes
Entertainment Landscapes
Diaspora Landscapes
Inspirational and Spiritual Landscapes
Health, Wellness and Medical Tourism
and others 
References Cited
Andrews, H., & Roberts, L. (Eds.). (2012). Liminal landscapes: Travel, experience and spaces in-between. Routledge.
Brooker, E., & Joppe, M. (2014). Developing a tourism innovation typology: Leveraging liminal insights. Journal of Travel Research, 53(4), 500-508.
Clawson, M., & Knetsch, J. L. (1966). Economics of outdoor recreation. Washington, DC: Resources for the Future.
Crouch, D. (2000). “Places Around Us: Embodied Geographies in Leisure and Tourism.” Leisure Studies, 19 (1): 63–76.
Goodnow, J. M., & Ruddell, E. (2009). An illustration of the quest genre as spiritual metaphor in adventure travel narratives. Leisure/Loisir, 33(1), 241-267.
Hunter, C., & Shaw, J. (2007). The ecological footprint as a key indicator of sustainable tourism. Tourism Management, 28(1), 46-57.
Jaimangal‐Jones, D., Pritchard, A., & Morgan, N. (2010). Going the distance: locating journey, liminality and rites of passage in dance music experiences. Leisure Studies, 29(3), 253-268.
Lennon, J. J., & Foley, M. (2000). Dark tourism. Cengage Learning EMEA.
Lew, A. A. (2012). Tourism incognita: experiencing the liminal edge of destination places. √Čtudes carib√©ennes, (19).
Light, D. (2009). Performing Transylvania: Tourism, fantasy and play in a liminal place. Tourist Studies, 9 (3): 240-258.
Mott, C., & Roberts, S. M. (2014). Not everyone has (the) balls: Urban exploration and the persistence of masculinist geography. Antipode, 46(1), 229-245.
Preston-Whyte, R. (2004). The beach as a liminal space. In A. Lew, C. M. Hall, & A. Williams (Eds.), The Blackwell’s Tourism Companion (pp. 249–259). Oxford: Blackwell.
Pritchard, A., & Morgan, N. (2006). Hotel Babylon? Exploring hotels as liminal sites of transition and transgression. Tourism Management, 27(5), 762-772.
Shields, R. (2013). Places on the margin: Alternative geographies of modernity. Routledge.
Trudeau, D., & McMorran, C. (2011). The geographies of marginalization. In V. Del Casino, M. Thomas, P. Cloke, R. Panelli (Eds.), VA companion to social geography, (pp. 437-453). Wiley.
Turner, V. (1974). Liminal to liminoid, in play, flow, and ritual: an essay in comparative symbology. Rice Institute Pamphlet-Rice University Studies, 60(3).
Van Gennep, A. (1960). The rites of passage. University of Chicago Press.
White, N. R., & White, P.B. (2004). Travel as transition: Identity and place. Annals of Tourism Research, 31 (1), 200-218.
3. Timeline:
Abstract Submissions:               May 31st, 2018
(250 words, 3-5 keywords noting the significance of each for a total of 500 words)  Include a short biography for each author.  The author guidelines and review process for Tourism Geographies are found here <http://www.tgjournal.com/notes-for-authors.html>.
Abstract Decisions:                           June 30th, 2018
Full Paper Submissions:                   September 31st, 2018
Revisions and Decisions:                 February 28th, 2019
Publication:                                       June - December, 2019
Abstracts are to be submitted to the corresponding editor, Robert S. Bristow, using the email address recgeog@gmail.com.  State “TG Special Issue – Liminal Landscapes” in subject line.

03 March 2018

Car Rentals

Ever notice the variable pricing for renting a car?  When I travel and need to rent a car, I realize that I also need to shop for the best deal.  The airlines offer extra miles,  AAA says they have special pricing and other benefits and so on.

Of course the car rental companies are different too.  The style of car (e.g., sub compact, Standard SUV etc.) might be the same size but the car will be different.  For instance a Ford versus Toyota versus Hyundai.  You see, a big difference?

And then there are different prices for city versus airport pickup!

Loyalty programs help, but since I don't rent a car that much, I haven't joined them.

And don't get me started on the extra insurance.

I remember I dinged a bumper on a car in Martinique, and despite the extra insurance, there was still a 1,000 Euro deductible! Fortunately my credit card picked that up.