Ladies In Music Alphabet-- The Judds Billy Draws Two consists of Billy Horn 25 (Niagara Falls, N.Y.) , lead vocals, guitar, harmonica and songwriter, Doug Krell, 26, (Youngstown, N.Y.), rhythm guitar, backing vocals and bass, Rosie Lorentti, 20, (Lewiston, N.Y.), bass and backing vocals and piano and Chris McClellen, 23, (Buffalo, N.Y.), drums. Off Broadway is one of the few St. Louis music venues that attracts indie rock and punk bands that are up and coming, but that aren"t completely obscure. A perfect example is the brand new psychedelic folk group Here We Go Magic, which played a beautiful set at Off Broadway a couple weeks ago. The band had stopped in St. Louis on it"s way to the festival wristbands, where they played a ton of shows that got pretty impressive reviews. And the gun slingin", whiskey guzzlin" indie rockers Murder By Death are scheduled to play at Off Broadway in May - it"s bound to be a more appropriate atmosphere than if the group performed at the Pageant to the tune of $5 Budweisers. JON AUER What I find compelling about sport wristbands BLOOD/CANDY is that it may be our most unified record and yet our most eclectic record at the same time. Certainly wins my vote for best album art we"ve ever had.

New Year is another occasion wherein wristbands can be used as a reminder for a new year"s resolution. If one has forgotten his/ her promise on losing weight, stop smoking/ drinking, etc. then get a wristband! Just choose your favorite color, phrase such as "Eat less, please!" and type of silicone wristband you like, and order it. What a way to literally not to break your resolution. Besides becoming golf"s largest amateur golf tournament, the Golf.Com World Amateur Handicap Championship is one of the world"s greatest annual reunions. Golfers from every U.S. state and two dozen countries gather every year during the last week in August to not only compete in a professional tour-event wristbands, but also to renew friendships from years past, and make new ones for years to come. WHO ARE YOU GOING TO INVITE? Your guest list will be the determining factor in almost every decision that you have to make while planning your party. If you have to rent a location for your event you will need one large enough to hold all of your guests. The number of people you have will determine the amount of food, how many chairs and the number of gift bags to prepare if that will be part of you event. So sit down and make a list of potential guests. Right now it"s a whirlwind of excitement for me. I"m painting all the time and have ideas come to mind 24/7. This has been the longest stretch of having my artist mojo in... well forever. I hope the future brings new exhibit opportunities, increase in orders for custom work, I hope for a few sales, and I can"t wait to see what I learn. Hopefully I will be able to show on a smaller scale and maybe even put on a show myself. True to it"s name, the bar is a few hundred feet west of South Broadway Street. Crime can be thick in this part of St. Louis, so be observant and don"t flash wads of cash to random dudes hangin" out in alleys. My first introduction to the venue was when a friend informed me she had been robbed walking from her car into the bar. Her sob story had a positive twist though, because the bartenders at Off Broadway fed her free drinks all night!
Naked Castle, a resort developed by the Naked Group, sits atop a hill in the Mogan Mountain area of Deqing, Zhejiang province. CHINA DAILY

Eco-friendly "hill stations" blossom in wake of visionary Naked resort pioneer in Zhejiang

White-collar workers in big cities are turning to the natural beauty of the countryside on weekends to enjoy a break, and decompress from the pressures of urban life in the process.

Deqing county in Zhejiang province, which offers beautiful landscapes and other advantages in the heart of the Yangtze River Delta, is a destination of choice for nearby urban residents. It takes less than two hours to drive to Deqing from Shanghai or Hangzhou, the provincial capital.

Unlike others who offer homestays in small villages, the farmers catering to tourists in Deqing describe what they do as "agritainment", a concept that has drawn foreign investors. Deqing"s agritainment may cost more than elsewhere, but it also features a higher level of service and a better tourist experience than most, officials say.

"The nightly room rate is over 1,000 yuan ($160), and you"d better book months in advance," said Wang Qinying, head of the Deqing county government.

Guests at farms are mostly white-collar workers-both from home and abroad.

Grant Horsfield, a South African businessman, is the earliest developer of Deqing"s agritainment industry. He is better known by locals as Gao Tiancheng. He came to Deqing in 2007.

A pioneer

Gao was born in a small village in South Africa"s Western Cape province and didn"t travel to a city until he was 12 years old.

"I am actually the son of farmer," he said in Chinese. Now he is the founder and chairman of Naked Group, a luxury resort developer in China.

When he started his first business in South Africa 20 years ago, he was asked in an interview about what he did, and why. He answered: "I hope to sit at a bar. Someone is talking about my product. They will be happy because I changed their life."

In 2005 Gao came to China as vice-president of marketing for a South African investment company in Shanghai. Despite being well-paid, he always felt homesick for nature and the idyllic life that he had known since childhood.

"There is more to life than just working," Gao said. In his philosophy of life, people are put on the earth to enjoy the wonderful things the creator made. By contrast, he said the concrete jungle of Shanghai seems suffocating and meaningless.

In 2007 he determined that he would go back to South Africa. But a trip to Deqing"s Mogan Mountain changed his mind. Lost on the mountain, he bumped into a land of idyllic beauty-a village called Laoling. There were only about 20 residents, all elderly, and many cottages had been abandoned as young people had left the hamlet. Yet the good environment and natural scenery made Gao feel at home-and he soon saw a business opportunity.

"If I could do something to be happy and also do some business, that"s a good thing," he said.

He rented six cottages at 10,000 yuan a year each for 15 years and started his first business in China-homestays. The locals at the time thought Gao was completely mad.

After rebuilding the cottages with the help of his architect wife, Delphine Yip, who earned her master"s degree at Harvard University, the place become a popular holiday resort. Though a room costs more than 1,500 yuan per night, the resort is popular with customers from Shanghai and Hangzhou.

Later, Gao built a luxury ecological resort-Naked Stables-in Deqing in 2009, which covers an area of 12,600 square meters of mostly woodland.

"The resort must protect the environment and especially the woods. So we just provide point-to-point construction land for the resort"s villas. The rest of the land is rented to Gao," Wang said.

Thirty villas were constructed using insulated panels.

"The villas are built using a steel-frame structure. The main materials were made in other cities and assembled here," said Zhu Yan, vice-president of special relations in Naked Group. "The houses can be dismantled without harming the woods."

It"s the first time the construction technique has been used in China, Zhu said.

Naked Stables opened in 2010, and it obtained LEED Platinum certification from the US Green Building Council in 2013.

For Gao, the prime principle is that no one is allowed to harm his resort-especially its environment. The buildings, which combine African and Asian characteristics, have made Naked Stables a resort distinct from others in Deqing.

In 2017, Gao"s latest resort rose from a collapsed castle that was built by Scottish missionary Duncan Main in 1910. It was called Naked Castle. It took Gao four years to finish the project, at a cost of more than 200 million yuan. Over the past 10 years, Gao"s Naked brand resorts have achieved fame nationwide.

Shannon Huang, chief marketing officer for a French home furnishings company in Shanghai, planned to enjoy a holiday at Naked Stables three years ago, when her son was 3 months old.

"It was a pity that we could not manage to book a room, even days before my holiday," she said.

At the end of February, she and her small family were able to spend a night in Naked Castle-for 4,500 yuan. "The rooms are expensive, but I think it"s worth it," Huang said.

In her eyes, Naked Castle is an ideal place to play with her son.

"In the past, when we thought about spending time with our 3-year-old, we would choose five-star hotels with entertainment facilities for kids. Naked Castle is not that noisy, and the kids have plenty of recreational activities to have fun."


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