QUAD CITIES – It's a new year and the Quad Cities isn't wasting any time to fill the days with interesting events.
With a little planning, Sauk Valley area residents can escape the everyday and grab some adventure not too far from home.
Forty-five businesses and organizations will take part in the 12th annual Be a Tourist in Your Own Backyard Weekend, Jan. 18-21. This is a promotion by the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau. Features include coupons for hotel packages, attractions, shops, places to eat, and spas.
Go to www.visitquadcities.com/beatourist for a list of specials and to print coupons.
"Tourists" have several options.
-- The River Music Experience at 129 Main St. in Davenport, Iowa, will have its fifth Winter Wine Experience from 5 to 8 p.m. Jan. 19. Hors d'oeuvres and live music will accompany the wine tasting. Participants will take home a wine-tasting glass as a souvenir. Tickets are $25 in advance or $35 at the event.
-- Moline Public Library will bring the Land of Oz to life from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Jan. 19 at 3210 41st St. in Moline. Crafts, refreshments, and activities are planned. Visitors will meander along the Yellow brick Road in the children's department. The journey begins in Kansas, goes through Munchkin Land, and ends at the Emerald City. This is a drop-in program.
-- Over the Ledge will be the draw at 10 a.m. Jan. 19 at the Family Museum, 2900 Learning Campus Drive in Bettendorf, Iowa. Participants will find out how much mess a mouse can create. From 1 to 3 p.m., visitors can make their own mouse squeaker and catapult fake cheese during Mouse Mania. This is also an open clay studio day from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m.
-- Isabel Bloom's production facility at 736 Federal St. in Davenport will offer free tours at 11 a.m. or 1 p.m. Jan. 19. Reservations are needed. Of special interest to collectors will be the 2013 tour piece that is available only at the facility.
-- Quad City Mallards fans need not despair. There's something for them, too. Two hockey games are planned: one at 7 p.m. Jan. 18 against Fort Worth and the second at 7 p.m. Jan. 19 against Denver at the i wireless Center, 1209 River Drive, Moline.
So get moving and enjoy. With all this going on, the winter doldrums surely will be pushed out the door.