I suspect someone did a snow dance…..

Snow has officially fallen and stuck to the ground. Prepare for Winter! No one prepares for winter quite like we do here in Garrett County Maryland. Averaging more annual snowfall than Fairbanks Alaska, we are more than prepared to tackle several feet of snow at a time! Bring out the big state trucks, the salt & cinders, plus the numerous “Little Guys” that all have plows attached to the front and we pretty much keep things well covered. The first snowfall always brings a certain amount of excitement whether it’s kids that look forward to playing in it to those that are hopeful for a school “snow day” to the winter enthusiasts that are ready to break out their skis and snowboards! Snow excitement is in the air!
 
Speaking of enjoying winter fun, now is the perfect time to start planning your winter getaway. Holidays are popular times to be at Deep Creek Lake so smooch up to your boss for your future days off and then call us! Ski in/ Ski out homes are very popular so if you want the best choice of which one will accommodate your group then I highly suggest that you start looking now before it’s last minute. Because we are the only ski resort in the state of Maryland and only 3 hours from Washington/ DC area, we are a quick and easy winter escape. Not big on skiing? Snow tubing is a lot of fun and requires very little skill only than to hold on! (Perfect for someone like me who can’t even stand up on skis, let alone try to glide on them…)
 
Maybe you don’t even need to be outdoors. Cuddle up in front of a crackling fireplace with a favorite book as you take in the breathtaking snowy mountains through the wall of windows in your mountain chalet. Awww, yes! Visions of hot chocolate, snow angels, kids learning to ski, ice skating and more are drifting through your head. The mountains are calling and you must come and play! Call us today to plan your winter playtime 1-866-351-1119 or online www.deepcreekvacations.com. We can’t wait to see you at the lake!

I do @ Deep Creek!

 
Amanda @ the TMDCV booth!
 I recently had the privilege of attending Cavanaugh’s Bridal Show held in Pittsburgh with our Event Coordinator, Amanda. I was a definite 1st timer so with that in mind, I had absolutely no idea of what to expect. First impression “Wow!” It was amazing and I know this sounds a little girly, if you may, but it was so pretty. Every detail that you would need to know in order to have a successful wedding, you would find here. How are you going to get to your wedding? Limo, of course. But here comes the interesting part, you now have options of what kind of limo? Certain color? Certain decorations? Music? Throughout the showcase, vendors were set up and ready to show the potential brides all of the different options that they offer. There were many mannequins dressed in bride gowns and bridesmaid’s dresses. On occasion, a Bride model would glide by. So many music options. There were many disc jockeys to choose from (I was little jealous that we weren’t closer to them as they were definitely the “fun group” to be around.) How about a violinist? Bagpipes? The choices seemed endless.                                              
Bridal Puppy!
Candy Buffets are very popular!
We were there, of course, as the “venue”. Why would you choose Deep Creek as your wedding destination? This is a no-brainer to us. Lush gorgeous mountains, a spectacular sparkling lake; clearly Mother Nature went out of her way to bless us. Surprisingly, a lot of people have not heard about Deep Creek so we were happy to tell them about it. The view from my window tells me that the snow is still floating down to the ground outside. Picture now, a winter wonderland wedding. We have that. Is Fall your favorite season? Our mountains pop with vibrant hues of orange, yellows, and reds creating a breathtaking backdrop for your special day. How about lakefront with Deep Creek shining blue and bold behind you? So, yes, we went to try to spread the word about Deep Creek.
In the meantime, we also came home with a plethora of new ideas to provide to our brides. (Did you know that photo booths and candy buffets are very “in” right now in the wedding world?) Amanda made a great deal of new contacts, which adds to list of services and knowledge that she can bring to her brides. All in all, it was a very successful trip and we came home ready to brainstorm.
Again, the snow is still coming down so now would the perfect time to plan a weekend ski getaway. Wisp is going full force so take advantage of the weather and come and play in the mountains. Give us a call @ 1-866-351-1119 or go online www.deepcreekvacations.com and we can assist you in finding the ideal vacation home for you and your guests. We look forward to seeing you at the lake! 

A Snowy Adventure!!

Muddy Creek Falls in winter!
In general, when one is trying to encourage others to try a new activity, it is helpful that the describer has also tried the new activity. <Insert perk to working for Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations>!  One of our favorite vendors in our area is All Earth Eco Tours. Crede Calhoun and his crew have perfected the art of “appreciating the great outdoors” and often invite Taylor-Made owners and employees to join them on some of their exciting excursions! However, when they first invited us on asnowshoeing tour a few years ago, I must admit that I had some serious trepidation. It is widely known throughout my circle, that I have a serious coordination issue. The issue, being, that I lack it! However, I was feeling brave and didn’t want to be called a wimp by Chad, so I signed up. We met Crede at Swallow Falls State Park where he gave detailed instructions on how to maneuver around in our “duck feet” and then we were off.  Crede took us through areas of Swallow Falls State Park that I have never been too (which I thought was impossible since I have frequented Swallow Falls for as long as I can remember!) Within minutes, I was in love! This new adventure was so fun, exciting, and not difficult at all (yes, a little awkward at first but once I got into my groove, I was good to go!) So, there we were surrounded by this breathtaking, peaceful scenery, the snow was falling gently, and I was upright and not falling down! Not to mention that you are outside in the fresh mountain air and participating in an activity that is good for you and fun at the same time. I can’t wait to do it again and definitely recommend it to anyone visiting the area. Make sure you call for an appointment!  1-800-446-7554 or go online www.allearthecotours.com ) Crede and his crew also do cross country tours as well in the wintertime. Any other season, you will find them guiding you on “eagle watching” kayak tours or hiking tours. (We went on the kayak tour this past spring and it was amazing!! I am already planning on doing it again this year!) 
Look at us go!
 There are still a lot of fun winter activities going on over the next month or two so be sure to call us here at Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations (1-866-351-1119 or online www.deepcreekvacations.com) to take advantage of some great last minute discounts. February 15thweekend is Winterfest in downtown Oakland. Bring the family and spend the day touring the town as you take in the awesome ice sculptures and enjoy hot chocolate and other treats. The following weekend (February 22nd) is our annual Deep Creek Dunk! Witness tons of people dunking themselves in the chilly water of Deep Creek Lake for the wonderful and important cause of raising awareness and money for Maryland Special Olympics! (Some of the costumes are amazing. Last year we had Elvis, the Teletubbies, Dorothy & the gang from Oz, just to name a few…) Homes are booking quickly so call today to find one that works best for you and your family. The snow if falling, the slopes are open, and we can’t wait to see you at the lake!

Walking in a Winter Wonderland….

Our Gigantic Christmas Tree!

      It’s finally beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Mother Nature has been rather fickle for the majority of December often giving us warm days up into the 60s. This week, however, is more typical of Garrett County. We thought “Snow” and here it is fluttering to the ground as I type this. This month has been a busy one here at Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations. We started off the month with our annual charity drive. This year we chose to send care packages to soldiers that are stationed overseas. We chose 3 different soldiers and sent items according to what they specifically asked for. Popular requests were snack foods, baby wipes, chap stick, foot powder, hygiene products and more. All in all we gathered approximately $700 worth of goods that were shipped. So, this is big shout out and thank you to my coworkers who used stellar teamwork to get these out in time for the holidays. You guys are the best!

Who’s the lucky winner?

      We then continued the holiday cheer with our annual Holiday party! I must admit, no one knows how to celebrate quite like the crew at Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations! Because we now have the space with are new, bigger office, we held the party here. Angie Bosley and her crew did a remarkable job of catering the party. They had our main Great Room elegantly decorated in gorgeous hues of red and gold and accented with lots of lights. The food was absolutely delicious (her meatballs are to die for!!) So, a big thank you to Angie and her help for the fabulous food and display. We continued our tradition with our “Yankee Swap” where everyone vied for various gift cards and crafts. I came away with a gift certificate to McHenry Beverage, which will come in handy with some bubbly for New Years. Another thank you also goes out to Joe, Jodi, and Chad for once again being so thoughtful to your employees and hosting a wonderful party.
      If you are going to be in the area this Monday, December 24th, please stop by our office. Santa Claus will be here from 10 am- 12 noon where he will be reading Christmas stories to the little kids. Hot chocolate and cookies will be served as well. Bring a camera, the family, and come visit us! It’s going to be a great time and we would love to see you!

Breathtaking!

      Wisp Resort is currently cranking out the snow so it’s a great time to call in and begin planning your winter getaway. As usual, we are offering some great specials and don’t forget about our “Ski Free Stay Free Package” where you stay and ski for 3 nights for the price of 2. Call and speak to one of our reservationist (1-866-351-1119 or online www.deepcreekvacations.com) about this and the other great packages we are offering.
      Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations would like to take this time to wish our friends, homeowners, and guests a truly wonderful and safe holiday season! We will see you at the lake!

Okay, altogether now…. Think Snow!

Aawww! December and the 25 day countdown begins! 25 days of Christmasmusic, Christmas movies, enticing shopping offers, Christmas goodies (and proof positive that I have very little will power when it comes to saying No to all things homemade and yummy!) and let us not forget the Christmas parties and activities! What a fun month to enjoy here at Deep Creek Lake!

A familiar humming sound has been heard echoing on the mountain top lately as Wisp is eagerly trying to crank out the snow so the official ski season can begin! (Fun fact: Did you know that back in 1956, the year after Wisp first opened, Recreational Industries attempted to make snow for the first time. The machines resembled lawn sprinklers which emitted frozen pellets of water.)  Of course, the snow blowers today are much more high tech.
They have a decent base of snow started and hopefully the temperatures will continue to drop in the evening allowing for the snow to be made.  Hard to believe that next weekend is Wisp’s 57th birthdaycelebration! They will be offering all kinds of amazing deals on discounted lift tickets, rentals, and lessons. There will also be entertainment, games, and more birthday fun (Come on Mother Nature, cooperated with us here!) Just to think, 57 years ago, one man by the name of Mr. Helmuth Heise had a vision. What many saw as just a cow pasture, Helmuth saw a makeshift ski lift. A one room hut with a potbellied stove served as the first lodge and the bed of a pickup truck operated as the first ski rental shop. Now all of these years later, the Wisp Resort is now considered  the premiere ski and golf destination in the state of Maryland. In the winter, guests flock to the area for the chance to challenge ski slopes, have a blast at the snow tubing park or enjoy some time at the newly designed ice skating rink. Throughout the rest of the year, Wisp still offers a bevy of activities from the mountain coaster that winds down the mountain, the exquisite golf course, mountain buggy tours, Disc golf, the Flying Squirrel Canopy Tour, and much, much more. (www.wispresort.com)
We are still offering some fantastic last minute discounts for most of our homes, so gather you friends and family and give us a call here at Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations (1-866-351-1119 or go online www.deepcreekvacations.com). It’s a fun filled weekend that you definitely don’t want to miss.
Bringing the family? On Saturday December 9th, The Discovery Center will be hosting a Holiday Open House. From 10 am- 1 pm, stop by and enjoy steaming hot chocolate and homemade cookies. The kids will get a chance to make their own nature picture frame and have their pictures taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus! A wonderful family event that you don’t want to miss. For more information, go to the their website www.discoverycenterdcl.com
We are embracing the Holiday spirit here @ Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations and we can’t wait to share it with you. Call today to begin planning your Deep Creek getaway. We can’t wait to see you at the lake!

You can have your (free) cake and eat it too! Happy Birthday Wisp!

After some beguiling weather, Mother Nature finally succumbed and realized that December + Garrett County = Snow! Lots of the wet, fluffy stuff blanketed the region on Thursday and I must say, it’s definitely breathtaking! Of course, this came just in the nick of time, as the ski enthusiasts are anxiously awaiting a turn to tackle the mountain. Next week marks the 56th birthday celebration of Wisp Resort! Hard to believe that back in the year 1955, what others saw as a simple cow pasture, was another man’s vision of something else entirely. Helmuth Heise opened the first ski trail, The Face, that year. It was accessible through a rope tow and one little log cabin served as the main lodge. Today, Wisp has 32 trails and 7 chairlifts! The official opening day is Saturday the 17th. Wisp will celebrate their birthday with significantly discounted lift tickets, rentals, and lessons, entertainment, games and even complimentary cake (you can’t go wrong with free cake!!) If you are like me and lack the ability to even stand on skis, let alone actually ski, don’t forget the snow tubing park and ice skating rink. There is definitely something for everyone. If you haven’t booked your winter getaway with Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations, then now is the time do us. Make sure you check out our e-brochure, http://www.deepcreekvacations.com/ for a full listing of all of our homes. As always, we are offering some fantastic ski packages so make sure you call to get the details. In the meantime, we look forward to seeing you on the slopes!

Elvis has not left the building…just yet!

As I mentioned last week, I am on a new quest to conquer my Holiday shopping procrastination. I decided to once again go local, with a side of different thrown in. This brought me to The Shawnee Trading Post, located towards Oakland and approximately 10 minutes from Deep Creek Lake. I love that place! It’s certainly easy to find as the outside is randomly decorated with some very large and unique statues and fountains. These large bronze beings range from children playing to a large assortment of animals (dogs, cats, dolphins, frogs, fish, bears, the list goes on…) If this hasn’t peaked your interest then you simply must just step inside. The most obvious thing that you will see upon entering is the large man-made pond inside the door. Decorated lavishly in “garden/pond” decor, you will be warmly greeted by a beautiful school of koi fish. And then let the ‘wow’ factor begin. The store is packed full of amazing fiberglass statues/people. Elvis is in the house, along with Marilyn, James Dean, The Duke, and I believe I even caught a glimpse of Jordan there. The walls are also lined with gorgeous vases and flower pots, which in my opinion, would make an awesome gift. They also specialize in taxidermy so as you approach the back wall you will quickly become enthralled with the display of the gigantic elephant head. Scan on and check out the lion, elk, and other various animals. Most of the items in the store fall into the category of “lawn/garden decorations” but they also have amazing lamps, trunks, and country home decor. Our shopping days are quickly come to a close, so if you are like me, and still have plenty of people to cross off your list, then I highly suggest you check this store out (especially if you are a fan of all things funky, quirky, and just plain unique, like I am). In the meantime, let the temperatures drop, “Think Snow!” and we look forward to seeing you at the lake!

Let the games begin….



Last Spring some of the creative people at Taylor-Made began to brainstorm some ideas of something new and fun to offer our guests. Light bulbs were going off like crazy but finally an plan emerged. Summer Scavenger Hunt 2011! The plan was to encourage our renters to really get out and enjoy some of our favorite places and establishments around Deep Creek Lake. During check in, we give our renters a welcome bag (our thank you for their patronage). The idea was to figure out the given clue and have a party member(s) take a picture with the welcome bag at the location. The grand prize was a Free 3 night stay in one of our rental homes! Wow! What a great turnout! For all of those that participated and sent in your pictures, we would like to say Thank You! We loved seeing everyone’s photos and hearing your positive thoughts on the hunt. Finally, a winner had to be announced!
Michael and Robin Crawford from Hanover, PA was the grand prize winner. They enjoyed a 7 night stay in On Eagle’s Wings in July and will be visiting us again in April for their free trip. Congratulations Michael and Robin!
The fun doesn’t stop there! We got such great feedback that we decided to continue the Scavenger Hunt for awhile longer! And so it has began, Fall & Winter Scavenger Hunt 2011! (Okay, so we could have tried to come up with another, more unique name….this title just seems to say it all!) Good Luck to all our future participants. In the meantime, as skiers and snowboarders get giddy with anticipation, see you at the lake!

Western Maryland Santa Express

Saturday, December 4th, was a blistering day in Deep Creek Lake. With the holiday cheer in the air, I decided to take my son on his first ever (and mine as well) train ride. We went on the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad and chose the Santa Express in Cumberland (only about 45 minutes east of Deep Creek Lake). What a sight was the large steam engine as it rolled into the station and Santa Claus waving out of the conductor’s window! Brody was so exicted, not only to see Santa Claus, but to get on his first Choo Choo Train. The train was huge, we had to go through 8 carts before getting our seats. Santa came through each cart giving out candy canes and talking with the kids. That was the only time I could get Brody away from the window. The ride to Frostburg took about 1 hour. We went and had lunch at a restaurant pub in Frostburg before heading back to Cumberland. The narration on the train was excellent and we got to hear about the caves and horseshoe tracks along the way.

Couple of helpful hints.
  1. If you can splurge, get the 1st class tickets (they are a bit more but they include lunch and great seats), and you get to your seats quicker (only matters if it is freezing outside)!
  2. Brody had a blast, but he is 2 – perfect age. If I had taken my older neices and nephews I would suggest to bring snacks, drinks, and a DVD player to keep their interest going.
  3. The tickets are free for any lap child. Brody was on our lap the whole time so he could see out the window.
  4. Stroller was key for the Frostburg excursion. You can keep it between the seats folded up during the train ride.
  5. If you have infants bring a blanket – it was a bit chilly for Jorja, my newborn.

We had a great time and will be looking into the Murder Mystery Ride the Spring!

Swallow Falls in the Winter

After receiving over 87″ of snow so far this year and being too busy to get outside to actually enjoy it, I decided to venture out yesterday. I took the family to a snowy and quite beautiful destination. One that we all love to hike in the summer but seem to forget about it in the winter, Swallow Falls State Park.

One thing I never really noticed until yesterday, is that they have a handicap parking spot further down on the walkway to the Falls and a ramp that leads to the overlook – so everyone can enjoy the awe inspiring rush of the waterfall!

Muddy Creek was not completely frozen, but still magnificent in its splendor. The pathways were all plowed making the walk easy and my son had a blast in the snow on the way down.

If you have not made it out there yet – Swallow Fall State Park in the winter is a must see!