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ANCHORAGE, ALASKA

The Iditarod: Experience the Spirit of Alaska

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Road Scholar
Program #8148RJ
7 Days | 6 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderate
While all of our learning adventures offer extraordinary value, our "Best Value" programs were rated by our participants themselves who thought their dollar went particularly far.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.

Itinerary for Feb 27 — Mar 5, 2013

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Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Wednesday, February 27 - Orientation
Afternoon: Check-in from 4-6 p.m. at the Westmark Hotel.

Dinner: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Evening: Program Orientation and Introductions at 7 p.m.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Thursday, February 28 - Mushers Banquet
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Morning: Discover the Iditarod and the history of the Iditarod trail through the eyes of veteran naturalist, wildlife biologist and musher Nan Eagleson.

Lunch: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Afternoon: Enjoy an exclusive exploration with the curator of Anchorage's Wells Fargo Museum. This hidden gem features an amazing collection of Alaska Native artifacts, traditional clothing, a seal-skin Bering Sea kayak, fine art by Alaskan artists and pieces representing early business and military history in the region.

Dinner: Dine with the mushers and fellow Iditarod fans at the Musher’s Selection Banquet in the Dena’ina Civic and Convention Center.

Evening: Attend the selection and drawing banquet, where each musher is assigned their starting position in the race. This event is a great opportunity to meet mushers.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Friday, March 01 - Meet the mushers at Race Headquarters
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Morning: See the great race through the eyes of veteran musher who will participate in this year's race. Revel in the behind-the-scenes excitement of Race Headquarters at the Millennium Hotel on the day before the race. Enjoy book signings and a chance to meet the mushers.

Lunch: In the field

Afternoon: Get introduced to the geography of Alaska in a class at the Alaska Public Lands Information Center.

Dinner: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Evening: Enjoy the friendly folks and faces of Alaska and discover downtown Anchorage with the First Friday Art Walk. Experience the city at its best, when galleries are open late and artists, mushers, locals and visitors join together in a celebration of the season.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Saturday, March 02 - Ceremonial Race Start and Alaska Native Heritage ...
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Morning: Celebrate the festival atmosphere as downtown comes alive and all of the dog teams gather. The morning of the ceremonial race start in Anchorage provides your first opportunity for close encounters with the teams of endearing and enthusiastic sled dogs whose devotion and determination inspire mushers from around the world to enter this challenging race.

Lunch: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Afternoon: Experience the history and culture of Alaska Natives at the Alaska Native Heritage Center during Iditarod Day. Arts, crafts, dance presentations, films, language classes and explorations of life-size samples of traditional homes for five distinctive cultures will be available.

Dinner: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Evening: Gather for a private talk given by a visiting musher.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Sunday, March 03 - Official Start of Iditarod Sled Dog Race
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel

Morning: Depart hotel by motor coach to travel to Willow, Alaska, for the Official Start of the race (weather permitting). Visit the year-round Iditarod Headquarters in Wasilla en route.

Lunch: In the field

Afternoon: Get close to the action at the race re-start in Willow. Watch each team of dogs and their musher leave the start gate. Every team has its own unique style, every musher has big dreams, and each dog runs with astonishing enthusiasm. Catch the excitement.

Dinner: In a Wasilla restaurant (near the location of the race re-start)

Evening: Return to hotel by motorcoach.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: Centrally located downtown Anchorage; Restaurants and shopping within walking distance; Restaurant on site

Contact info:
720 West Fifth Avenue
Anchorage, AK 99501 USA
phone: 907-276-7676
web: www.westmarkhotels.com/anchorage.php

Room amenities: Free Newspapers, In-room coffee, Iron and Ironing Boards, Hairdryers, Data Ports, HBO/CNN/ESPN

Facility amenities: Elevators, Interior Corridors, Guest Laundry, Exercise Room, Private Balconies in every guest room, smoking allowed only on balconies.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Ask for the Road Scholar rate.
Contact the hotel directly, let them know you are with the Denali Education Center Road Scholar group. Additional room nights will be reserved for and paid for by participants independently.

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Six: Monday, March 04 - Musk ox, caribou, bears, and more...
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Morning: Depart by bus for the scenic oceanside journey to the historic gold-mining town of Girdwood and environs. Visit the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center to see and learned about rescued wildlife, including caribou, musk ox, moose, grizzly bear, black bear, elk, bald eagles and more.

Lunch: In the field

Afternoon: Enjoy free time in Girdwood. Some activities are available for an additional fee: exploring the historic downtown, visiting the Round House museum, taking the Alyeska Aerial Tramway, skiing the mountain, going dog mushing, or taking a sleigh ride.

Dinner: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Evening: Program wrap-up and farewells.

Lodging: Westmark Anchorage

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Seven: Tuesday, March 05 - Program concludes
Breakfast: Westmark Hotel, Turnagain Room

Morning: The program ends at breakfast with independent departures. Note: To extend your Alaskan adventure, enroll in "Winter in the Interior: Adventure, Adaptation, and the Aurora Borealis," program #14630. This small program departs from the Westmark on the morning that the Iditarod program concludes. With this program, experience the winter worlds of small town Alaska and subarctic wilderness, through exploration of Talkeetna, Denali National Park, and Fairbanks.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
6 nights of accommodations
17 meals: 6 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners
2 Expert-led lectures
10 Field trips

Ratings

4.9
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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