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updated: 4/28/2013 5:03 PM

On the road: Chocolate rules at annual Long Grove Fest

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  • Live music, shopping and lots of chocolate make up the annual Long Grove Chocolate Festival.

      Live music, shopping and lots of chocolate make up the annual Long Grove Chocolate Festival.

  • It's an Art Party Weekend in the Quad Cities with art exhibits, performances, kids' activities and a self-guided Spring Mississippi Valley Art Drive.

      It's an Art Party Weekend in the Quad Cities with art exhibits, performances, kids' activities and a self-guided Spring Mississippi Valley Art Drive.

  • Cruise Lake Geneva to tour the restored gardens and 20-room Black Point Mansion, built in 1888.

      Cruise Lake Geneva to tour the restored gardens and 20-room Black Point Mansion, built in 1888.

 
 

Chicago

Luxury cruise for Mom

Treat your mom to a brunch or dinner cruise aboard the Odyssey or Spirit of Chicago on Mother's Day. Each cruise features plentiful brunches or entertaining dinners, and all moms receive a rose and complimentary glass of champagne or mimosa. Reservations are required. Moms cruise free with the purchase of three adult tickets when booked by Monday, April 29.

Morning, afternoon and evening brunch and dinner times vary by ship. Prices range from $64.90 to $79.90 per person on the Odyssey. Book at (888) 957-2320 or odyssey.com. Prices range from $59.90 to $69.90 on the Spirit of Chicago. Book at (888) 957-2324 or spiritofchicago.com.

R & R + shopping = happy mom

Perhaps what Mom really wants is a little rest, relaxation and shopping this Mother's Day. The DoubleTree by Hilton Chicago-Magnificent Mile offers a Mother's Day Girls Getaway featuring overnight accommodations on a high floor for panoramic views of the city; $80 worth of bonuses including a $50 gift card valid to more than 70 retailers at 900 N. Michigan Ave.; a gift bag filled with coupons from the shops; and two complimentary drinks and an appetizer served at the hotel's lobby bar.

Valid Thursday through Monday, May 9-13, at 300 E. Ohio St., Chicago. Package costs $239 per night. (866) 778-8536 or doubletreemagmile.com

Midwest

Hot chocolate

Countless people adore the fruit of the cacao tree -- chocolate -- and you can get your fill at the 14th Annual Long Grove Chocolate Festival. The festival kicks off the outdoor special event season in the historic town with everything chocolate. Enjoy chocolate in countless incarnations, including chocolate cake, doughnuts and martinis. Nibble chocolate-dipped strawberries, brownies and fudge while enjoying live music, browse more than 50 boutiques and galleries and sample beer, wine, sauces, olive oils and desserts at local restaurants and specialty shops. There also will be plenty of kids' activities.

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday, May 3-5, near routes 53 and 83 in Long Grove. Admission is $5, kids younger than 12 admitted free; cost includes a $5 coupon to use for your next visit to Long Grove. Purchase an additional $5 chocolate tasting ticket to select six different chocolate tastings at participating merchants. (847) 634-0888 or visitlonggrove.com.

Cruising Lake Geneva

Hop aboard a Lake Geneva Cruise Line boat for a 90-minute narrated tour and visit to historic Black Point Mansion, a Queen Anne-style summer estate restored to its original splendor. Leave the Riviera Boat Docks in downtown Lake Geneva and cruise to the restored gardens and 20-room mansion, built in 1888. Learn about the "summering" lifestyle in Lake Geneva while viewing pre-Civil War furniture that predates the house. Black Point is the only home along the 26-mile shoreline open to the public.

10:30 a.m. Saturdays and Sundays, May 4 to June 9; 12:30 p.m. daily starting June 15 at 812 Wrigley Drive, Lake Geneva, Wis. Tickets cost $36 for adults; $34 for seniors; $30 for students ages 13-17; and $24 for children ages 4-l2. (800) 558-5911 or cruiselakegeneva.com.

Arty party

Saturate yourself in culture during the Art Party Weekend in the Quad Cities. The new Village in Bloom Festival of the Arts takes place in East Davenport, Iowa, and features fine art and performances on an outdoor stage, indoor theater, corner park and the historic East Village Fire Station. Venus Envy, a free all-women art festival, brings juried regional artists and performers together at Bucktown Center for the Arts in Davenport, Iowa. You can also take one of the largest self-guided art tours in the Midwest with more than 500 artists in 50 locations. During the Spring Mississippi River Valley Art Drive, artists welcome people into their homes, private studios, galleries and shops to interact and experience the inspirations that motivate their work.

Self-guided Spring Mississippi Valley Art Drive from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, May 4-5. Get a printable version of the art tour map at MRVAD.com. Village in Bloom Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 4 (rain date May 5); visit villageinbloom.org. Venus Envy from 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at Bucktown Center for the Arts, 225 E. 2nd St., Davenport, venusenvyqc.org.

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