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Automotive Traveler Magazine: 2011 07 Battle Of Bull Run Page 1

Travel News Briefs: Ready for a road trip? Tickets still available for 150th Anniversary Commemoration of the First Battle of Manassas/ Bull Run

PLUS... It's a scientific fact: Women overpack for travel. And, an auto-travel app for anyone bound for the Cape.

By William Basore

From cavalry and cannon demonstrations and costumed reenactments to period music, lectures, and film, history comes alive next week on the usually quiet fields of Manassas, Virginia. To honor the 150th anniversary of the First Battle of Manassas/Bull Run, the National Park Service is joining Prince William County and the City of Manassas to hold a series of commemorative events 21-24 July.

The events, for which tickets are still available, will represent the perspectives of Federal and Confederate soldiers, civilians, slaves, and freed African Americans.

The highlight of the 150th Anniversary Commemoration will be a re-enactment of the first major land battle of the Civil War at Pageland Farm adjacent to the Manassas National Battlefield Park on Saturday and Sunday, 23 and 24 July. The Snyder family donated use of the Pageland Farm in honor of their mother, preservationist "Stonewall Annie" Snyder.

More than 8,700 reenactors from across the United States, Canada, and Europe have registered to participate in the actual battle scenario.

Complete information on ticket purchases, parking, overnight accommodations, and dining is available at ManassasBullRun.com or by calling Discover Prince William & Manassas, the region's destination marketing organization, at (888) 721-1861.

Many of the events are free; others require ticket purchase. Off-site parking with continuous shuttle service is available for most events, including the 150th Anniversary Commemoration of the First Battle of Manassas/Bull Run reenactment, City of Manassas events, and the National Park Service events.

Battle of the Sexes, the Holiday Packing Version

Ever wonder why loading up the car for a family road trip is such a hassle? Turns out the average woman packs almost twice as many items as she ends up using while away from home.

A study conducted recently by British travel insurer GoCompare.com found that women typically need 34 separate items for a weeklong break--but pack 60... "just in case."

"Women like to prepare for every eventuality," says Jeremy Cryer, head of travel at GoCompare, "which means packing for all weathers, the possibility of day trips, evenings out, sports and activities, you name it." Men, on the other hand, stick to the basics.

Almost two-thirds of women find it difficult to close their suitcases once they decide what to pack--yet four in 10 still plan to shop for clothes while on vacation! Better look into a roof carrier.

Get Me to the Cape on Time

When the 405 freeway in Los Angeles closes, at least you can take surface streets and, oh so haltingly, make your way to your destination. Sure, it might take three hours to get from the Valley to Redondo Beach, but won't that fresh cracked crab taste even better when you finally get to the pier?

Folks in the greater Boston area have no such option when heading to popular summer spots like Cape Cod. With traffic conditions at the top of automotive travelers' complaint lists, Global Alert Network has released a hands-free audio-alert application for tracking local traffic info and weather updates in and around Beantown.

GAN's audio-alert application is free to download and currently available on BlackBerry and Android devices (coming to the iPhone soon). The app initiates automatically--much like a ringtone--playing the alert without the need for the driver to interact with the phone. Alerts are geo-targeted to the user's location.