Amanda DiGiondomenico

Amanda is a freelance blogger and considers herself a resident of both Baltimore and Washington, DC. She loves taking road trips up and down the East Coast, but looks for any excuse to escape to California. She’s perfected the art of traveling with just a carry-on and finds airports oddly relaxing. Amanda spends her time tweeting and writing for her personal blog, The Spendicate.

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Posts by Amanda DiGiondomenico

Welcome to the “Paris of the Plains,” where, tonight, the National League will go head-to-head with the American League in the 83rd Major League Baseball All-Star Game at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, MO. Maybe they won’t settle the argument of whether a designated hitter is a good idea or not, but America’s favorite players will surely compete in an exciting battle of the brawn that symbolically marks the halfway point of the baseball season.

From its fountains and parks to its famous barbecue, Kansas City holds its own as an All-Star Game host city. Learn more about the city that the Royals call home with our gallery of Kansas City’s sights.

And while we’re figuring out which league is better, let’s talk about whose stadium is the coolest, too — check out Travel Channel’s picks for Baseball’s Greatest Stadiums.

Who will you be rooting for tonight? We want to know!

If you’re one of the 20 million people who have read Fifty Shades of Grey, then you’ve probably fantasized about being swept away to Seattle. Well, dream no more, because the luxurious, waterfront Edgewater Hotel is making it possible to have a romantic rendezvous, Christian Grey-style.

With The Edgewater Hotel’s 50 Shades of Romance package, you’ll be welcomed to your room with a bottle of Bollinger Rose champagne and a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey in the nightstand – replacing that other best-selling book, we assume.  After cruising through the streets of Seattle with a demo drive in a Mr. Grey-esque Audi, you’ll recreate Christian and Ana’s sailing excursion on Puget Sound. Conclude your weekend with a tour of the infamous couple’s favorite Seattle hot spots, courtesy of a custom Fifty Shades landmarks map. With such a jam-packed weekend, chances are the room’s bed will be put to more practical, rather than creative, use.

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The annual Festival of San Fermin is underway, with locals of Pamplona, Spain — along with visitors from all over the world — filling the streets for outrageous parties, parades and, lest we forget, the running of the bulls.

A tradition with a hazy history, the running of the bulls has grown from a convenient way to get the bulls from the corral to the bullring, to an event worthy of any thrill-seeker’s bucket list.

Get your adrenaline pumping — and learn a little, too — with our Festival of San Fermin photo gallery.

Or vicariously run with the bulls with a personal account by one of our writers and learn how you, too, can live the experience of a lifetime in the streets of northern Spain.

Have you been to the Festival of San Fermin? Tell us about your experience in the comments!

Tonight at 8|7c, Bizarre Foods celebrates 100 episodes with a one-hour special where Andrew Zimmern recounts the last 6 years of eating everything under the sun. Join Andrew as he remembers the people who have welcomed him, the places that opened his mind and, of course, the food that challenged his palate.

Following the 100th episode special, Andrew visits Las Vegas in the premiere of this season’s Bizarre Foods America. Watch as he witnesses just how extravagant food can be in the city that knows no limits. From a $750 cupcake to a $5,000 burger, the casinos won’t be the only establishments emptying your wallet.

Get a sneak peek of what Andrew will encounter tonight with our Bizarre Food of the Week!

Didn’t make it to Wimbledon this year? The tennis championship wraps up tomorrow with the men’s final, but before the last serve hits the court, get a glimpse of what it would feel like to be at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London.

From the determination displayed on the court to the crowds huddled on Henman Hill, Travel Channel provides a peek into the competition’s excitement in our Visit Wimbledon gallery.

And our eyes will be on London tomorrow as Andy Murray takes on Roger Federer in the men’s final in an attempt to become the first Briton to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936.

Were you lucky enough to go to Wimbledon? Upload your greatest photos to our Take Your Best Shot community!

By Mommy Points

There’s only a little time left until the Olympic torch reaches London and marks the beginning of the 2012 Summer Olympics, so it isn’t surprising that hotel prices in London this summer are high. Not only is the British pound a pretty strong currency against many other currencies (such as the US dollar) but demand is obviously higher than normal because of the Olympics.  You could say that the whole world is converging upon London!

However, if you collect miles and points from your travels, or even just through your credit card spending, you can still use those points to book some free rooms in London during the Olympics.  There are several very nice hotels in London that still have standard reward night availability from July 27 – Aug. 12 when the Olympics are in full force.  In fact, using your hotel points for free nights when the going rate is very expensive, such as during the Olympics, is actually the best way to redeem them.  It ensures you are getting the best value for your hard-earned points.

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Every week we scour the travel blog universe to see where people are going, what they’re seeing and if they know something we don’t about their favorite destinations. From preparing to run with the bulls to capturing breathtaking photos of colorful Panama, travel bloggers have been busy.

Presumably, your local fireworks went off without a hitch this week — not true for San Diego residents. Gadling shares a video of the Big Bay Boom — with all of the city’s fireworks exploding at once.

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We’re in the midst of summer and that means one thing: time for family vacations. Well, cookouts, too, but it’s mostly a chance for busy families to pause and spend precious moments together in between the routines of a normally hectic schedule.

But with endless possibilities for family getaways, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the prospect of schlepping the kids somewhere new. Travel Channel is here to make it easy on you with tips to plan a trip everyone can enjoy.

Want to avoid the hassle of airports while having a little more control over your budget? There’s a reason why road trips are a classic family adventure — read our tips on road-trippin’ in the US.

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Staycationers and vacationers alike, rejoice! This weekend, Travel Channel premieres Extreme Waterparks and Insane Coaster Wars, in addition to our summer lineup that includes Trip Flip with Bert Kreischer, which premiered last week and Top Spot, starting next week.

These shows might be too adrenaline-pumping for certain New York Times’ writers, but for those of us looking for a vicarious thrill and perhaps some ideas for our next thrill-seeking adventure, it sounds like the perfect way to spend a Sunday night. Insane Coaster Wars will pit the best and scariest rollercoasters against each other in categories like “G-force Giants” and “Speed Demons,” while Xtreme Waterparks will give viewers a peek at the world’s craziest water attractions.

As far as we’re concerned, journalist Neil Genzlinger’s idea for “Insanely Xtreme Top Shot” sounds pretty entertaining, but we wouldn’t recommend shooting rabbits with a hose or attempting to make a waterslide on your roof. So instead watch videos of insane coasters and extreme waterparks to prepare yourself before buckling down for the jaw-dropping premieres.

Catch double episodes this Sunday, July 8th, of both Xtreme Waterparks at 8|7c followed by Insane Coaster Wars at 9|8c.

Can you believe tomorrow is the Fourth of July already? It’s not too late to make your holiday plans. From Boston to San Francisco, we rounded up the best fireworks the Fourth has to offer. And to make your planning even easier, we even found out which cities will have the best and the worst weather for pyrotechnics. Get out your picnic blankets – it’s time to get patriotic!

Check to see if the weather is going to ruin your fireworks with our friends at WeatherTrends360.com.

Get in the mood with photos of the best fireworks displays in the nation.

Impress your friends when you show them where the best viewing spots are for fireworks  around the country.

Where will you be catching the fireworks this year? Let us know in the comments!

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