Douglaston Park and Brinegar Cabin, NC

Rolling ridgetop meadows and steep mountainsides char­acterize the Doughton Park area. Remote places in the moun­tains like this were settled in the mid to late 1800s by expand­ing families seeking more land and moving farther up the mountain creeks and valleys, yet still remaining close to par­ents, grandparents, and other relatives. While people in many other parts of the country were rushing into the modern ways of the 20th century, these close-knit families–like the Brinegars, Caudills, Joines, Crouses and Pruitts–still raised most of their own food, built their own homes, and lived well into the 1900s without modern conveniences.

Martin Brinegar and Caroline Joines were married in 1878 and built a log cabin near Caroline’s parents’ home. It still stands here on the ridge along with their springhouse and granary. Here they raised and provided for their three chil­dren. Below the Brinegar cabin is Basin Cove. Settled in the 1880s by Harrison Caudill, Basin Cove grew into a community of 20 families with a store, church, and school. In 1916 a tor­rential flash flood and mud slide, cascading down the valley, destroyed all but one home and killed several people. The com­munity was never rebuilt.

Today, Parkway visitors can experience the ruggedness and beauty of life here. Glimpse Basin Cove and the remain­ing cabin from Wildcat Rocks near Bluffs lodge. Or hike some of the more than 30 miles of trails that meander through the meadows and climb the steep hillsides. The Brinegar cabin is open several days a week during the summer and fall. Visitors can tour a demonstration garden and the cabin, and see exhib­its, learning how Caroline made her family’s clothes from the flax she grew and sheep she raised herself.


Accomodations in Orlando

In Orlando, accommodations offer much more than a place to sleep after an exciting day at the theme parks. Destinations unto themselves, Orlando’s hotels and resorts boast an array of entertaining amenities includ­ing championship golf courses, world-class spas, boutique shopping and plenty of dining options, not to mention lazy rivers and zero-entry beach pools, splash parks and waterslides for the kids, and even children’s recreation programs.

With more than 450 hotels and 115,000 guest rooms, Orlando offers a multitude of lodging options, from budget and moderately priced hotels to all-suite proper­ties, bed and breakfast inns, and numerous AAA-rated hotels and resorts. Larger families and groups will find a home-away-from-home in one of the area’s numerous vacation home rentals, while those who choose the “great outdoors” can take their pick of campgrounds.

Yet Orlando is constantly opening new hotels to serve future demand. The Hilton Orlando, adjacent to the Orange County Convention Center, is opening in September 2009. Then there is the Bonnet Creek complex. Consisting of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf Astoria Orlando, which are adjacent to each other and surrounded by the Walt Disney World® Resort, the properties will open during October.