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Rock and … Travel?

April 06, 2016
In a few days, the attention of the music world will focus on tiny Indio, California. The desert community just outside of Palm Springs will host one of the country’s biggest gatherings of rock, indie, hip-hop and youth culture. The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival (named after the valley that is home to Indio, Palm Springs and other neighboring cities) draws nearly 200,000 people to inland California over the course of two weekends, all to watch some of the largest names in music. Festivalgoers travel from around the world to camp outside of the Empire Polo Grounds, the host of the concert, or book hotel rooms across the valley.

Like a food festival, a particular sporting event or even a season change (like fall in New England or spring among the cherry blossoms of Washington, D.C.) music can be a great motivator for a traveler. Thankfully, Mitch-Stuart’s catalog of fundraising auction travel packages can absolutely be used to send a music aficionado on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure involving some of the great names and places in music history.

For music fans, there are few cities more accommodating than New Orleans. Beyond every café and bar in the French Quarter with a jazz combo playing in the back corner, the city is home to some of the country’s best music festivals. The New Orleans Jazz Festival brings in some of the world’s brightest lights in its titular genre, along with soul, R&B and even rock acts (Pearl Jam and Stevie Wonder are headlining in 2016). The Essence Festival, traditionally held during the summer, may be America’s biggest celebration of African-American culture, including music headliners, guest speakers and others. And Voodoo Music and Arts Experience combines great tunes with interactive art in a way that draws fans of both.

For those who prefer music of a different era, a trip to visit one of the country’s museums dedicated to the art may be a great bidding motivator. Whether it’s the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland or even a smaller tribute (the Stax Museum in Memphis, for instance, dedicated to the classic soul label), a trip with a built-in musical attraction like one of these destinations can turn heads at a fundraising auction. These excursions can be bonus features to an already-existing package (a country fan bidding on our “CMA Awards, Country Music's Biggest Night!” item, for instance) or reasons to utilize one of Mitch-Stuart’s “Choose Your Own Adventure” packages, making them versatile selling points.

And if your supporters want to combine the energy of music with the star power of awards shows, we’ve got trips to two different nights filled with statuettes, live performances and surprises galore. As mentioned before, the “CMA Awards, Country Music’s Biggest Night!” takes donors to Nashville this November to watch the 50th annual Country Music Awards. And while the show itself is the centerpiece, fans will find plenty to do during the rest of the time; there’s a reason Nashville earned the nickname “Music City,” after all. And no city does glitz and glamor quite like Los Angeles, meaning that the 2016 American Music Awards, also held in November, attracts a who’s-who of the pop charts. The 2015 edition featured Jennifer Lopez, Gwen Stefani, One Direction and Coldplay – and the 2016 show could feature your supporters (in the audience, at least) with the “Rock On at the American Music Awards!” package.
Louis Armstrong Statue

New Orleans Jazz Band

Taylor Swift

Coldplay Concert


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Eat, Travel, Love

June 04, 2014
One of the great joys of travel is getting the chance to experience a new culture, whether it’s by taking in beautiful sights, seeing local music or visiting area museums. But to really get a taste of a destination, find a dinner table; there may be no more authentic way to immerse yourself in a new place than figuring out the local cuisine. According to the U.S. Travel Association, “fine dining” is the fourth-biggest reason for leisure travel among Americans, and with celebrities like Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern shining light on hidden foodie adventures near and far, that ranking seems only likely to increase.

L'Atelier des Sens school of cooking in France
La Cuisine Paris
Sorrento Cooking School in Italy
New Orleans School of Cooking
At Mitch-Stuart, Inc., we’ve put together a wide range of culinary experiences, both domestic and international, for use by non-profits as charity auction travel packages. Whether it’s gumbo and crawfish in New Orleans or pasta and wine in Italy, Mitch-Stuart can send your donors to sample some of the world’s great cuisines – and put some extra cash in your non-profit’s pocket.

From Julia Child to today, France has attracted a reverence from many travelers when it comes to its cuisine. The nation has one of the longest list of Michelin-starred restaurants, and graduates of French cooking schools are considered to be some of the most qualified chefs in the world. Bring home a little bit of that knowledge after taking a class at the famous L’Atelier Des Sens or La Cuisine Paris with our “Parisian Culture and Cuisine” package. Participants will get a hands-on experience in either school’s kitchen, learning from master instructors. Travelers won’t be stuck making the food for the entire trip, though; the auction packages also includes lunch at 58 Tour Eiffel, the restaurant on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower.

Hop in the kitchen in Sorrento, Italy, with a seven-day/six-night trip to the Amalfi Coast stunner. Along with a stay at the Esperidi Resort and a trip to Pompeii, travelers get three classes at the resorts Sorrento Cooking School, where the chefs-to-be will put together a four-course meal, along with receiving in-house lunches after each day’s lesson. Recipes prepared during the seminars will also be included, meaning that the globe-trotting foodies can bring a taste of Italy home, as well. That, of course, is just the on-site offering; the village itself some of the best dining in the country, often supplemented with amazing views.

Class is also in session in the Big Easy. Take a trip to the bayou and enjoy a three-hour class at the New Orleans School of Cooking, right in the heart of the French Quarter. Visitors will get a chance to learn about the city’s cuisine in a hands-on seminar, creating dishes like Crawfish Etouffee, Shrimp Creole and even Bananas Foster Crepes. Travelers will also get a chance to leave the kitchen and head out on a boat for a jazz cruise and Creole buffet.


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Destination Spotlight: New Orleans

December 23, 2013

New Orleans Paddleboat
New Orleans School of Cooking
House of Blues in the French Quarter in New Orleans
Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans
Creole Cuisine
The city of New Orleans with its storied past and colorful character is one of the most-requested destinations that deluxe travel experts, Mitch-Stuart, Inc. has in its no-risk catalogue. And if you organize charity auctions and fundraising events, a trip to the bayou makes a spectacular offering for your donors.

Mitch-Stuart has travel packages and experiences to the destination for those who’ve never experienced New Orleans; from the city’s Creole and Cajun cuisine, riverboat cruises up and down the Mississippi River, to simply enjoying the jazz that is inherent to the region.

The selection of trips works equally as well for those who’ve visited this legendary city before but haven’t experienced it all. This trip can include a lazy ride down the Mississippi in an authentic paddlewheel riverboat for a Creole buffet, and a meal at the renowned Commander's Palace! Your New Orleans adventure culminates with a class at the New Orleans School of Cooking, where you'll learn the basics of food, folklore and Louisiana cooking.

As with all Mitch-Stuart, Inc. travel packages, the company has done all the work. Two New Orleans offerings provides donors with a trip for two for four days and three nights at either the historic landmark, Monteleone hotel or the comfort and classic of the Sheraton New Orleans including Economy Class Air. The packages also feature a Dinner Jazz Cruise, a class at the New Orleans School of Cooking and a $200 Commander's Palace Gift Card.

Visitors are encouraged to discover historically celebrated Canal Street in the center of the central business district, legendary entertainment and renowned attractions, such as the famed French Quarter, Convention Center and Aquarium of the Americas.

For the culinarily-inclined (and who isn’t in Louisiana!) Savor two Southern dinners! Since 1880, Commander's Palace has been a New Orleans landmark known for the award winning quality of its food and many commodious dining rooms. Modern New Orleans cooking meets haute Creole in the kitchen, which prepares succulent cuisine with the flavor of distinctive Louisiana. You'll also step aboard the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen and cruise into the night as you enjoy a lavish Creole buffet.

We encourage you to login or register on our site to view the Mitch-Stuart, Inc. catalogue, Destinations of Excellence® for more great examples.
















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Oscar Goes Traveling

February 12, 2013
And the Oscar goes to… YOU!

Have you ever fantasized about going to the location of your favorite movie, walking the streets the characters walked, and pretending to be a part of their experience? Well, Mitch-Stuart, Inc. offers packages that give you the chance to do just that! Below are examples of some of our packages that serve as themes and locations for Oscar-nominated movies.


Silver Linings Poster Image Silver Linings Playbook — Silver Linings Playbook has been nominated for eight Oscars, including Best Picture. In the movie, the main character, Pat, attends a Philadelphia Eagles game that his father has bet a lot of money on, as his good luck charm. Mitch-Stuart offers a trip for two to any regular season NFL football game, such as a Philadelphia Eagles game.  Hopefully you can be a better good luck charm for your team than Pat was!


Les Misérables — Also nominated for Best Picture is Les Misérables, a film that takes place in early 19th century France. Mitch-Stuart offers six different French packages that include hotels all over Paris, including the Marriot Champs-Elysees and the Hotel Le Littre. One of our trips to Paris includes a trip for six days and five nights, including a cooking class at L'Atelier Des Sens or La Cuisine Paris, a Tour of Paris, Lunch at Altitude 95 at the Eiffel Tower, and a cruise down the River Seine. From learning how to make macaroons, croissants, and the quintessential French baguette, you’ll take home the best souvenir of all: French culinary savoir-faire! Les Misérables Poster Image
Snow White and The Huntsman Poster Image Snow White and The Huntsman — Colleen Atwood is nominated for Best Costume Design in Snow White and The Huntsman. Snow White and the Huntsman is a modern take on the classic story of Snow White. Although this film was not a children’s movie, a trip to Disney World is a great way to enjoy the Snow White we all know and love. Mitch-Stuart offers Disney fans a family trip for four to Orlando, Florida for five days & four nights at the Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, including three-day My Way Passes to Disney World.  At Disney World you’ll be sure to enjoy rides and attractions, and of course Snow White and all the Disney characters!

Beasts of the Southern Wild — Beasts of the Southern Wild is nominated for Best Picture, among other awards. The movie takes place in a fictional Louisiana town, Bathtub. Mitch-Stuart offers a trip for two to New Orleans, Louisiana for five days and four nights at the JW Marriott New Orleans, including a Dinner Jazz Cruise, a class at the New Orleans School of Cooking and a $200 Commander's Palace Gift Card. To get more of the feel of the film, visit Isle de Jean Charles, not far from New Orleans, which is where the film was shot. Beasts of the Southern Wild Poster Image

Life of Pi Poster Image Life of Pi — Life of Pi, which is nominated for Best Picture, tells the story of young Pi who sets sail to Canada with his family. After a storm hits the ship he is found on a rescue boat alone, but with the company of a Bengal tiger. Unlike Pi, you CAN make it to Canada on a Mitch-Stuart trip; we offer trips throughout the country! You can enjoy resorts and hotels in Alberta, British Columbia, Quebec and Vancouver. One of our trips to British Columbia includes a trip for two for five days & four nights at The Fairmont Chateau Whistler and a $600 Fairmont gift card for ski lift tickets. Chateau Whistler is a top-ranked ski area in North America, and was home of the 2010 Olympics.

Without a doubt, Oscar certainly logs his miles! These trips are a great way to reward a movie buff, or generate a standing ovation at your next auction; but we have more where they came from! Be sure to check out our catalog for the rest of our trip selection.


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