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Six Tips to a Great Group Getaway
By: Ian Cahir

When planning a group getaway, there are some important things you can do ahead of time to ensure that the trip is filled with lasting memories for everyone involved. Here are six simple winter travel tips that can help you get the most bang for your group's buck.

1. Travel Less, Enjoy More
Well-organized groups spend their time on the slopes, in the lodge, or in the restaurant instead of in the car, on the shuttle, or on the bus. An all-inclusive destination provides the amenities and convenience -- from campsites and cabins to an expansive lodge -- in one location. A wide range of dining options in one resort also allows visitors to travel the culinary scale without hitting the same note twice. The right resort also provides many options for activities, so you spend your time building memories, not biding time.

2. Ensure Something for Everyone
Part of the fun of a vacation is enjoying your favorite activities, while taking the opportunity to try something new. The best destinations have something for young and old. Depending on the season, some destinations offer everything from the favorites -- snowboarding, skiing, ice skating, hiking, and swimming -- to the new.

These alternative activities, such as snow tubing and air-boarding in the winter and euro-bungy and paintball in the summer, can be exciting and enjoyable group activities, making the experience both familiar and new and the vacation all the more memorable.

3. Start on the Right Foot
When trying new activities, it is important to do so in a safe and encouraging environment. Airboarding, for instance, is a winter sport in which inflatable air rockets speed through the snow at upwards of 40 mph. A great group destination will offer individual or group instruction in skiing, snowboarding, airboarding, or any other physical activity. Group destinations should be prepared to not only entertain, but educate your group during activities to ensure the level of safety is as high as the level of fun.

4. Meet & Greet
One of the greatest parts of a memorable trip is taking the time to rest, relax, and revel in the experience. The best religious destinations include an inviting and flexible location to have a place to gather, worship, and pray. Whether you need meeting rooms, outdoor space, or just want a warm hearth to enjoy the company, the bonding shouldn't stop when the sun goes down.

5. Keep It Affordable
State parks can provide a wide range of activities for groups on a much smaller budget than traditional hotels or other resorts. The surrounding natural wonders can be accessed for minimal cost and maximum enjoyment. Be sure to call in advance to make reservations at the locations that interest you the most. Just because you're on a budget doesn't mean your group can't have a great time.

6. Look into the Future
The best destination is one that is never the same experience twice. With a full slate of options, you can personalize multiple trips during the same season with different events for different groups. Or, enjoy an entirely new set of activities, events, and excursions each season.

Canaan Valley Resort in Davis, West Virginia, features a 250-room lodge, 23 cabins and 34 campsites located within driving distance of major metropolitan areas including, Washington, DC; Pittsburgh, PA; Baltimore, MD; and Roanoke, VA. The resort offers a wide array of activities for all seasons, from skiing and championship golf to hiking, turtle slides, birding, and scenic chair lift rides. They offer group rates, special packages and a variety of meeting spaces that will help make any group getaway a unique and memorable experience. For more information, visit www.canaanresort.com.

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