From the highway or the window seat of an airplane, it can be easy to dismiss Gainesville, Fla., as a small but sprawling town with a very big college. You’re likely to see more green than gray and not much skyline to speak of in the downtown area near the massive University of Florida.
Back in 1881, wealthy Northerners decided to buy some lakefront land here and change the area's name from Osceola - after the chief of the state's Seminole Indians - to Winter Park to make the area more appealing to vacationers. Little would they know that a century later nearby Orlando would grab the attention of most of those vacationers as the theme-park capital of the world.
Downtown Salt Lake City is livelier than it used to be. City Creek Center, a 23-acre mall-and-housing redevelopment project (retractable roof, trout pond, completed in 2013) is a big part of that, as is the Greenbike sharing program, also begun in 2013. A loosening of liquor laws hasn't hurt, either. As I found on a three-night visit in November with my wife and daughter, there are at least seven craft breweries downtown. Granted, this might not be enough to deter you from that snowboarding/skiing vacation up the hill in Park City. But after the slopes, you could allow yourself a downtown overnight and a few hours of playtime - and you might be pleasantly surprised. The tab: $417 (excluding taxes and fees) for three nights at the Hilton Salt Lake City Center; $61 for light dinners at Squatters Pub; $9.95 per adult for admission to the Leonardo museum. Round-trip airfare from Los Angeles International Airport about $188, including taxes and fees.
The National Football League is under investigation by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman for possible antitrust violations involving its ticketing practices, a person with knowledge of the probe said.