Award winning singer/songwriter Doreen Taylor has been called one of the hottest up and coming musical stars with three hit music videos landing on Country’s “Top 100” in the same week. Her debut album “Magic” was hand selected by Bose and QVC to be played on all on-air demonstrations for promotion of their Bose Wave Sound System. After receiving an overwhelming response from her tour and selling out dozens of shows across America, the National Parks Conservation Association selected Doreen to help honor the U.S. National Parks.
The NPCA has collaborated with Doreen to create an anthem in honor of the splendor of our parks with a song and music video, “Colors of the USA” in an effort to draw more people into the parks. The song has been honorably named as the “Official Song of the National Parks Conservation.”
The music video can be viewed here. Her hope, along with NPCA, is to increase diversity among park attendance. The song is available to the public for download here. A percentage of the proceeds will be donated to NPCA to help advance their mission to protect our national parks.
Here are some of Doreen’s favorite places in America…including our beloved national parks!
My favorite place in the U.S. to visit is…South Beach/Miami Beach. When I really want to just escape and don’t want to travel too far (my flight is a little over 2 hours) I hop on a plane and go down for a few days. There is everything I could ever want right in a 2 mile radius- great shops, restaurants, nightlife, pristine beaches and spas. It really feels like you have gone to a foreign country without the hassle of crossing the US Border. I try to get down there at least 2-3 times a year just to decompress. Being in the line of business that I am and having such a tremendously demanding profession, I really need to just get away and South Beach has become one of my key places to do that.
The first thing I do when I go to South Beach is…I go to Joe’s Stone Crab on Washington Ave. I have actually made getaway trips to Miami just so I can get their stone crabs while they are in season. Going to Joe’s has actually become a staple of my time while I am in Miami and in all my visits; I have never had a bad experience.
Everyone should visit…Niagara Falls…at least once in their lifetime. Words cannot express the magnificence of this natural wonder and pictures and video do not even come close to standing on the edge of the cliff overlooking the American falls. Standing at the precipice puts life in perspective and it is a truly humbling experience. Being honorably named as an Ambassador of the National Parks Conservation Association, I have been inspired by many US National Parks that are right here in our own backyard. Albeit, Niagara Falls is a New York State Park, you cannot ignore the magnitude of what that natural treasure holds.
The Mammoth Hot Springs located in Yellowstone National Park …was a pleasant surprise…because there are very few places on earth quite like this area. Being a geothermal area, it is a sight unlike any other. Algae living in the warm pools have tinted the travertine shades of brown, orange, red, and green and for true nature lovers, this is a place that needs to be on your “bucket list”. When I was a child I was lucky enough to be able to swim in one of the hot springs (Boiling River) and it was an experience unlike any other. The 6-foot-wide stream pours into the Gardner River, where it mixes with cold river water. The water level in the Gardner River determines the temperature where you can encounter a blast of hot water on your back, while at the same time your toes are shivering in the icy river water.
My favorite restaurant in the U.S. is…the Porter House at the Time Warner Center (Columbus Circle) in New York City. I actually have my own private booth when I go there and although the view is spectacular, that is not why I tend to gravitate towards going there when I am in the city. The food is spectacular, the service top notch and the décor is comfortable yet sophisticated.
The best place to find…chicken wings (or as people outside of Buffalo, NY call “Buffalo Wings”) is at Duff’s Famous Wings located in several locations around Western New York and Canada. Growing up right outside Buffalo I learned to become a wings connoisseur early on and in my opinion, Duff’s is the best place for true Buffalo style wings. When I go home to visit my family, it is on the top of my “to-do” list and I end up going at least 2-3 times when I am back. It isn’t the best thing for my caloric intake, but in this case, I will make an exception!
Some great towns people may not know about to visit are…the small towns all over the country. These little out of the way places are what make America so great. When I was a child, my parents would drive my family across country (Yes, just like National Lampoon’s Vacation) and we would stop in the most random of places to eat or just visit. I would always be amazed at how different these towns were from my own and as a child it was so intriguing to me to just watch and observe. Everyone knew each other. People would hold the door for each other. They would sit in the town center and just have conversations. Things were not rushed and people took the time to just be nice to each other. The people that make up these towns are the true pulse of America. They live their lives working honest jobs and value the more important things in life, like hard work, family and friends. I wish more people were like that.
“South of the Border” in South Carolina…is a great truck stop. It’s on I-95 and I love this place because this isn’t your traditional, old school truck stop. It is home to the Pedroland Amusement Park even housing a Ferris wheel! They have an indoors reptile exhibit and even a 200ft sombrero shaped observation tower. They have really made it like a “must see” destination point rather than a stop along the way. This is a great place especially if you have kids and have been driving for a long time. It really is a town within itself and as a child I remember really having a great time.
My favorite airport in the U.S. to fly into is…Philadelphia International Airport. It means I am home.