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Five Rad Festivals for Your 2017 Bucket List

Five Rad Festivals for Your 2017 Bucket List

Are you feeling the pressure of the holidays? Well, one might suggest it’s time for you to look ahead to 2017 and start planning your next bucket list adventure. Where do you want to go? Why do you want to experience _________? What if there were a way to not only visit ______, but also experience a once-in-a-lifetime event while there? In a way you’ll be getting more bang for your traveling buck along with better stories for the office break room. We’re going to highlight what we believe to be five unforgettable, bucket-list worthy festivals to add to your Wanderlist- er, lust.

1. Harbin Ice & Snow Sculpture Festival: 1/5/2017 – 2/25/2017

The cheapest flights are usually offered in January. I’m sure you can surmise why. Post-holidays, people have already traveled for the year and pocketbooks are slim. This festival is in one of the most remote places in the world, but lasts long enough that you won’t have to be restricted to just one week to get there! The Harbin Ice & Snow Sculpture Festival in China showcases not just a few pretty ice statues. Think more on the scale of castle-sized. Over 10,000 people carve sculptures for several weeks leading up the the opening. Bundle up. An extra suitcase of layers might be worth it. Details:

EVENT LOCATION

Songbei and Zhaolin Park, Sun Island, and Harbin Ice and Snow World
Heilongjiang, 150036
Harbin

EVENT PRICE

Free! There are options to purchase professional tours.

MAIN AIRPORT

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Taiping International – HRB (CN)

2. Coachella: 4/14/17 – 4/23/17 (two weekends)

Coachella (which has gotten a bad rap due to non-authentic music lovers and way too many flower crowns) is still worth your time, money, and hard-earned time off. Why? Because when this many top artists come together in such a short amount of time, you get the best bang for your buck, festivalwise. Don’t forget your bandana to help filter your inhale when the dust storms kick up; but regardless you’ll have many photos to look back on and an experience that will make you want to come back again the next year. If you can still find tickets, here’s what else you need to know:

EVENT LOCATION

Empire Polo Club
81-800 Avenue 51
Indio, CA 92201

EVENT PRICE

$375 plus additional for camping or overnight parking

MAIN AIRPORT

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Palm Springs or LAX

3. Brighton Festival: 5/6/2017-5/28/2017

Art. Dance. Music. Immersive theater. Literature. Artist open houses. Beachside installations. With over 150 arts, music, theater, and culture events to choose from, the Brighton Festival continues to captivate the hearts of visitors in the “city on the edge”  in England. This festival which is known to “make connections with the real world” offers an ambitious and daring program for three weeks each May.

EVENT LOCATION

Brighton Dome areas and other venues throughout the city
Church Street, BN1 1UE
Brighton

EVENT PRICE

Varies per event. Some events are free! £10 for a Festival Standby ticket.

MAIN AIRPORT

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Heathrow – LHR (GB)

4. Edge of the Lake: 6/30-7/2

This festival originally attracted German, Swiss, and French electronic fans from the surrounding regions of Sierre, Switzerland to its beautiful location – the alpine paradise of Lake Géronde. Now, it has reached over 5,000 festival-goers from all over the world, who come to hear more than 40 live bands, DJs, and performers getting the groove on with house, funk, electro, jazzy hip-hop, soul, and blues tunes.

EVENT LOCATION

Lake Géronde
3960
Sierre (Switzerland)

EVENT PRICE

Varies. See website Single day passes available. Camping packages available.

MAIN AIRPORT

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Belp – BRN (CH)

5. La Tomatina: July or August 2017 – TBD

If drinking sangria from the time you wake up and having the mother of all food fights sounds like a good time, this festival in Spain is for you. You won’t wear those clothes again (guys go shirtless), and you’ll be ankle-deep in tomatoes, but hey, you can say you took part in a festival that attracts upwards of 30,000 people a year. Chances are you’ll take the train or bus from Madrid or Valencia to get to this festival, but it will be so worth it!

EVENT LOCATION

Plaza del Pueblo
46360
Buñol, Valencia

EVENT PRICE

10 Euros – check website for 2017

MAIN AIRPORT

Manises – VLC (ES) or Madrid

Hopefully these five events give you some gusto to get through the holidays and start planning your 2017 travel. Whether you desire to travel solo, with a friend, or bring along the family, this list should get you started. Remember to always compare fares before you purchase and set a travel alert so that you can book your trip for the lowest price.

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Last Updated on November 11, 2019

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

4. Feed Your Brain

Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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6. Write it Down

If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

7. Listen to Music

Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

8. Visual Concepts

In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

9. Teach Someone Else

Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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