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McLean Community Center 2004 Tours
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The following tours were offered through the McLean Community Center in McLean, Virginia in 2004. A great time was had by all!

McLean Community Center


2004 Tours

Please scroll down to see the tours we offered in 2004. They will give you an idea of the high caliber tours that we offer our clients. Please click on McLean Community Center 2005 Tours to see our offerings for this year.


2004 Tours that have already operated:

Bahama Mama
February 9-12, 2004


Did last winte'rs snow storms find you gazing out the window pondering how you were going to shovel yet another two feet off your driveway???? Did just the thought of the cold, wet weather and an aching back start you dreaming of an escape to a lovely tropical island? If so, our "Bahama Mama" is the tour for you! Start now thinking about warm sunshine, crystal blue water, lush vegetation, and miles of pristine white-sand beaches! Think luxurious surrounding, deluxe accommodations, Calypso music and Caribbean cuisine! Think about the spectacular new Westin at Our Lucaya Beach and Golf Resort! Because that's where we're headed for our winter tour in 2004!

We fly on a direct flight from Baltimore to Grand Bahama Island. Upon our arrival, we';ll be quickly whisked to the Westin, where their friendly staff will be awaiting us. Gorgeous and breathtaking are just a few of the words used to describe this new Westin property spanning over seven and a half acres of Bahamian beach. Wander the grounds and discover four pools, several restaurants, the Senses Spa, numerous water sports, tennis courts and two championship golf courses! From horseback riding on the beach to swimming with the dolphins, from glass bottom boat rides to sunset sails, there is no lack of activity here.

Discover the natural beauty of the Grand Bahama Islands with a visit to the Garden of the Groves and Parrot Jungle. Cascading waterfalls, botanical gardens, tropical birds, beautiful hibiscus is truly enchanting! Another day will find us visiting the Lucayan National Park. Then there's duty free shopping at Port Lucaya Marketplace. There's nightly entertainment and the soon to be open grand Casino where you can try your luck at the tables or on the slots. But then who needs the Casino to determine luck? Think again about last years snow storms, and then think how lucky you are to be on such a great winter getaway! The McLean Community Center's "Bahama Mama" tour!

Bahama Mama Package Includes:

Transportation from MCC to BWI
Roundtrip Airfare on Air Tran from BWI to Freeport
Transfers from airport to hotel
Three nights accommodations at the Westin Our Lucaya Resort with deluxe ocean view rooms
Festive Welcome Dinner, breakfast each morning, Farewell "Calypso Fever" buffet dinner
Tour to Garden of the Groves and Parrot Jungle
All taxes and gratuities, including Bahama departure tax

TRIP #1007.340 COST: $1190 Resident; $1240 Non-resident; based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $350) A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due November 30, 2003. Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.

Fabulous Philadelphia
March 7-8, 2004



It's back to "Fabulous Philadelphia" in 2004 for another cultural extravaganza! We're calling it a repeat performance with a twist. To enhance our enjoyment of the Flower Show, which will be celebrating its 175th anniversary, we are ordering very exclusive tickets that allow for PRE-SHOW ADMISSION! No more pressing crowds that distract from your viewing, overwhelm and wear you out. Instead, we'll be entering at 8:00 am, two hours before the general public is allowed in. An expert guide from the horticultural society will walk us through the exhibits and tell about the highlights. Stay on after our early tour if you like, or return to our hotel. This time we're making things really easy and convenient for you by staying at the four star Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, connected by the skywalk to the Convention Center and Flower Show. An upgrade to the "concierge level" makes it as good as the Ritz!

A visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art is included as well. We'll enjoy an audio tour of their blockbuster exhibition "Manet and the Sea." This show will be the first to explore the marine paintings of Edouard Manet and his contemporaries, including Monet, Renoir and Berisot who were deeply influenced by Manet's seascapes. And while we are on this nautical theme, the evening will find us enjoying a VIP dinner cruise aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia....complete with first class seating, champagne, hors d'oeuvres, fine wines and premium bar. And before we return home the next day, we'll enjoy an overview tour of historic Philadelphia, including Independence Square and the new National Constitution Center.

Fabulous Philadelphia Package Includes:

Roundtrip transportation from MCC to Philadelphia
1 nights accommodations at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, concierge level rooms
Acoustiguide tour of Manet and the Sea blockbuster exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
Dinner Cruise aboard the Spirit of Philadelphia, Enhanced VIP Package
Pre-Show Admission to the Flower Show, with expert guide to walk us through
(This adds considerably to the cost, but those who have attended in the past will know it is well worth it!)
City tour of Philadelphia, including visit to the National Constitution Center
All taxes and gratuities

TRIP #1009.340 COST: $525 Resident; $550 Non-resident; based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $140) A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due January 15, 2004 . Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.

Meet Me In St. Louis
Lewis and Clark Bicentennial
May 13-16, 2004


Almost two hundred years ago, at the direction of President Thomas Jefferson, Captains Merriwether Lewis and William Clark led a U.S. Army "Corps of Discovery" from St. Louis up the Missouri River into the vast, newly acquired Louisiana Territory. It was one of the most momentous journeys in American history! Lewis and Clark were charged to search for a "Northwest Passage" across the continent, to chart and explore the land and meet the people who lived there. Theirs is a romantic story of courage, resourcefulness and determination.

You are invited to join with fellow McLean Travelers as we journey back to St. Louis, Missouri, where it all began! We'll share in the excitement of the Bicentennial Celebration as we time our visit to take in two National Lewis and Clark "Signature Events." The first takes place in Wood River Illinois and commemorates the Expedition's Departure from Camp River Dubois. The second will be in St. Charles, Missouri where they will have a replica of the keelboat and reenactment of events that took place there before these brave explorers put their oars in the water and headed west.

While in St. Louis, we'll ride to the top of the Arch and visit the Museum of Westward Expansion. We'll see the National Geographic Omnimax film "Lewis and Clark: Great Journey West" at the St. Louis Science Center. And we'll enjoy an acoustiguide tour of the National Bicentennial Exhibition premiering at the Missouri Historical Society. The handwritten journals, maps, scientific specimens and Indian artifacts are sure to fascinate!

We'll explore Forest Park, site of the 1904 World's Fair that was held to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the Lewis and Clark expedition! We'll visit the St. Louis Art Museum and take a walk through the wonderful St. Louis Zoo! And to truly immerse you in St. Louis culture, if the Cardinals are in town, we'll include tickets to a home baseball game! And if they are having an away game, we'll enjoy dinner on "the hill" and perhaps take in a performace at the fabulous Fox Theater instead! Yes, ...Meet me in St. the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers...where history, excitement and fun all come together to make for a wonderful tour!

Meet Me In St. Louis Package Includes:

Roundtrip transportation from MCC to airport
Roundtrip airfare on American Airlines from Washington to St. Louis
3 nights accommodations at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis in historic Union Station
Breakfast two mornings at the hotel, Special Brunch on Sunday
Welcome Dinner at the private University Club, Lunch at Meriwethers, Luxury dinner train excursion
Premium ticket to St. Louis Cardinal Game
Tram ride up the Arch, Omnimax film, Acoustiguide tour of Lewis and Clark Exhibition at the Missouri Historical Society, visit to two Lewis and Clark Signature Events, tour of Forest Park area
All taxes and gratuities

TRIP #1011.340 COST: $1350 Resident; $1400 Non-resident; based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $250) A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due March 1, 2004. Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.


Boston to the Berkshires
From City Chic to Country Charm
July 17-22, 2004


From "Boston to the Berkshires"...from city chic to country charm...this tour is full of wonderful contrasts. It promises you a wealth of history, culture and fun. We begin in Boston where some might say our nation began! Our city tour will take us from Paul Revere's house to the Old North Church, from the Boston Commons to Faneuil Hall and the Freedom Trail, from Beacon Hill to the USS Constitution! We'll be staying in the center of it all at the Boston Marriott Long Wharf overlooking Boston Harbor. A visit to the Kennedy Center Library, a cruise in the Harbor, and the opportunity to admire the paintings at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts all add to our stay here!

Then it's off to the Berkshire's, the rolling hills of western Massachusetts. We'll travel by way of the scenic Mohawk Trail...with a stop at historic Deerfield Village en route. Our destination is Williamstown, an idyllic little eighteenth century New England town that is home to Williams College. We'll be staying at The Orchards, a fine and welcoming inn with attentive service, splendidly appointed rooms and first rate cuisine! Two very special attractions are located here, and we plan to take them both in! One is the distinguished Clark Art Institute with its renowned collection of Impressionists paintings. The other is the Williamstown Theater Festival, a summer-long celebration of theater that brings together an impressive array of artists. (Past performers include Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Richard Chamberlain, and Mary Tyler Moore among others)

Located in the nearby villages of Lenox and Stockbridge, we will visit the Norman Rockwell Museum (an American treasure!), Edith Wharton's estate and gardens at The Mount, Daniel Chester French's home and sculpture studio at Chesterwood, the gilded age Naumkeag house and gardens, as well as the Frelinghuysen/Morris house. And no trip to the Berkshires in the summer would be complete without a picnic dinner at Tanglewood followed by a musical performance at this venerable institution.

As an added bonus, we'll travel up into Vermont to view the Grandma Moses collection at the Bennington Museum, and perhaps take a few pictures of the many covered bridges found in the area. Finally, a stop at the unique and very interesting Hancock Shaker Village is planned. This "City of Peace" was home to those who practiced the Shaker Religion from 1783-1960.

Boston to the Berkshires Package Includes:

Transportation from MCC to Washington Dulles Airport
Roundtrip airfare on United Airlines from Washington to Boston, with return from Albany
2 nights accommodations at the Boston Marriott Long Wharf
3 nights accommodations at The Orchards in Williamstown
Breakfast each morning at the hotels
Welcome Dinner at Bricco's Enoteca in Boston's trendy North End
Gourmet Dinner at Yasmin's Restaurant at The Orchards
Picnic Dinner at Tanglewood
Pre-Theater Dinner at the Orchards
Lunch at Cranwell Resort
Ticket to Tanglewood performance
Ticket to Williamstown Theater Festival performance
Overview city tour of Boston, visit to Kennedy Center, Boston Museum of Fine Arts and cruise on Boston Harbor
Visit to Deerfield Village, Grandma Moses collection, Norman Rockwell Museum, The Mount, Chesterwood, Naumkeag House and Gardens, Clark Institute, Frelinghuysen/Morris house and Hancock Shaker Village
All taxes and gratuities

Trip #1004.140 Cost: $1965 Resident, $2015 Non-Resident, based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $475) A $500 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due May 20, 2004. Please make check payable to Custom Group Tours


Taste of the Tidewater
The Hampton Roads Area of Virginia
September 10-12, 2004


The "Tidewater" of Virginia. It is the area where the James, Elizabeth and Nansemond Rivers all flow together into the enormous harbor of Hampton Roads and then out into the Chesapeake Bay. This very historic and interesting area is the destination for our McLean Community Center fall tour. It played a crucial role in the discovery and settlement of our nation almost 400 years ago...and as such, we begin our "Taste" with a visit to Jamestown Settlement. This museum of 17th century Virginia tells the story of America's first permanent English colony and the Powhatan Indians. A short ferry ride across the James finds us in the Isle of Wight where we will visit the town of Smithfield. On the National Historic Registry, we'll enjoy a walking tour of the historic district before lunch at the Smithfield Inn (with their world famous ham on the menu, of course!)

We'll be staying on the concierge level at the four star Renaissance Portsmouth Hotel, rising 17 stories above the Elizabeth River with unparalleled views of the busy harbor. Watch the naval vessels, tug boats, commercial ships and pleasure craft ply the waters day and night! A gourmet "Welcome Dinner" at the trendy Fusion 440 Restaurant in Old Town Portsmouth is followed by a Lantern Tour led by our escort in period attire.

We'll spend a whole day in Norfolk, beginning with a special tour at the Douglas MacArthur Memorial. Then it's on to the Nauticus (National Maritime Center) where the Battleship Wisconsin is now berthed and open for main deck tours. Lunch will be at the Freemason Abbey, a 125 year old renovated church. Afterwards we visit the Chrysler Musuem, recognized as one of our nation';s top art museums. The piece de la resistance, however, will be a delightful afternoon cruise scheduled aboard the tall ship "American Rover."

A visit is included to the oasis that is the Norfolk Botanical Garden on Sunday, followed by a stop at the Mariners Museum in Newport News, where you will marvel at one of the finest maritime history museums in the world! And for the final course of our "Taste of the Tidewater," a late Sunday country lunch is included at the Red Maple Inn.

Taste of the Tidewater Package Includes:

Transportation via private motorcoach
Two nights accommodations at the four star Renaissance Portsmouth
Breakfast at the hotel on Saturday, Breakfast at the Botanical Garden on Sunday
Lunch at Smithfield Inn, Welcome Dinner at Fusion 440, Lunch at Freemason Abbey, Sunday Country Lunch at Red Maple Inn
Visit to Jamestown Settlement, historic Smithfield, MacArthur Memorial, Nauticus and Battleship Wisconsin, Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk Botanical Garden and the Mariners Museum
All taxes and gratuities

Trip #1008.240 Cost: $745 Resident, $770 Non-Resident, based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $160) A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due July 25, 2004. Please make check payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.

Boots and Bowties
Dallas and Fort Worth Texas
October 7-10, 2004


Boots and Bowties! Diamonds and Denim! Cowboys and Culture! However you spell it, this tour promises to be full of fun, excitement and wonderful contrasts! We'll be staying in the Lone Star Tower at the brand new Gaylord Texas hotel in Grapevine. Opryland's newest property, it plays the Texas theme all the way, complete with a replica of the Alamo and Riverwalk all under one huge atrium. This hotel is an incredible destination in itself! Prepare to be wowed!

From the longhorn steer and stockyards in Ft. Worth, to the Dallas Museum of Art and the new Nasher Sculpture Center...from the Amon Carter Museum of Western Art and new Cowgirl Hall of Fame, to the ultra sophisticated Ft. Worth Museum of Modern Art and the renowned Kimball Art Museum...we have a full itinerary planned for you to enjoy! We'll visit the Texas Book Depository, ride an old steam train and then stroll in the solitude of the Japanese Gardens.

Our dining venues will be equally as diverse...from an authentic Tex/Mex lunch at Joe T. Garcias to the seared pheasant breast or certified Angus beef at our dinner at the Lonesome Dove... we offer you a tantalizing taste of Texas! Then put on your best boots and bowties as we two-step on over to the elegant Mansion at Turtle Creek for their award winning Sunday brunch! Dallas and Fort Worth. Two great Texas cities, side by side... each offering their own special uniqueness! We plan to take in the best of both... and do it with fun and pizzazz!

Boots and Bowties Package Includes:
Transportation from MCC to Washington Reagan Airport
Roundtrip Airfare on American Airlines direct from Washington to Dallas
3 nights accommodations at the brand new Gaylord Texas hotel, upgrade to Lone Star Tower
Breakfast two mornings at the hotel, Farewell Sunday Brunch at Mansion at Turtle Creek
Welcome Western Dinner at hotel, Lunch at Joe T Garcias, Dinner at Lonesome Dove
Overview City Tour of Dallas, visits to Texas Book Depository, Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center
Train Ride on the Tarantula Train from Grapevine to Fort Worth
Visit the Fort Worth Stockyards, Cowgirl Hall of Fame, Amon Carter Museum of Western Art, Museum of Modern Art, Kimball Art Museum and Japanese Garden
Trip Insurance valued at $78 per person
All taxes and gratuities

Trip #1003.240 COST: $1528 per person (Resident), $1578 per person (Non-Resident) based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $275) A $500 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due on August 15, 2004. Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.


Discover Washington
Through the Eyes of the Smithsonian
November 5-6, 2004


We're teaming up with the Smithsonian on this tour to create a fun and exciting weekend in our own hometown! As a special treat, we'll have the privilege of staying at the lovely and historic Hay Adams Hotel...located directly across from the White House. Recently renovated to the tune of eighteen million dollars, the results are spectacular! It's the hotel of choice for world leaders, diplomats and foreign well as our group from McLean!

We'll begin our weekend with the Friday evening IMAX and Jazz Cafe at the Smithsonian's American Museum of Natural History. This popular program features live jazz, a gourmet menu and IMAX films! After breakfast at the Hay Adams on Saturday morning, we're invited for a "behind the scenes" tour of the Smithsonian Castle....followed by a tour of the soon to open National Museum of the American Indian. This newest Smithsonian Museum is dedicated to the portrayal of the life, history, arts and culture of our Native American peoples. Lunch will be in the Mitsitam Cafe...the museum's themed restaurant featuring indigenous cuisines of the American Indians. (Mitsitam means "Let's Eat" in the language of the Delaware and Piscataway peoples.) Finally, with Veteran's Day just a few days away, we conclude our tour with a visit the new National World War II Memorial...a tribute to the Greatest Generation!

A Weekend in Washington Package Includes:
Transportation via private motorcoach
One night accommodation at the historic Hay Adams Hotel
Jazz Cafe...dinner, jazz and Imax film at the Museum of Natural History
Breakfast at the Hay Adams
Lunch at Mitsitam Cafe at the American Indian Museum
Behind the Scenes tour of the Smithsonian Castle, Tour of the National Museum of American Indians, Visit to the new World War II Memorial
All taxes and gratuities
NOTE: Trip insurance NOT included on this tour

Trip # 1010.240 Cost: $358 Resident; $383 Non-Resident, based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $135)
A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due October 1, 2004. Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc.


Dickens Christmas
London, England
December 1-6, 2004

This tour is now in the "SOLD OUT" status.
Please call 703-790-0123 and put your name on our waiting list.
We often times do get cancellations.


Did you know that it was Charles Dickens who put the two words "merry" and "Christmas" together to invent the phrase "Merry Christmas"? And "merry" ours will be as we head to London, England for our holiday tour this year! Yes, we'll be celebrating a real Dickens Christmas, complete with a visit to Rochester, where Charles Dickens beloved book "A Christmas Carol" comes alive. The town transforms their High Street into a pre-Christmas Victorian scene from over 100 years ago. There are Carol singers, bell ringers, hot chestnuts roasting on the fire, and street theater with Dickens characters, parades and more! What fun we'll have here as we truly get into the spirit of Christmas as personified by this great author!

We'll be staying at the elegant and very classy, five star Renaissance Chancery Court in London, located right on the Piccadilly line and just a short walk into Covent Garden and the Theater District. We'll enjoy two top shows while here. (We're waiting on specifics to see what is hot at the time!) A city tour of London with a slight Dickens's slant is included as well, with a visit to the Dickens Museum and a holiday toast at the Dickens Inn! We'll visit Westminster Abbey, take a shopping trip to the Burberry Factory for great deals, and have plenty of free time to find that perfect holiday gift at Harrods. In fact, we give you an entire day free to enjoy as you please...visit the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert, or theater lovers can catch an extra matinee.

Our dining venues include a Welcome Dinner at QC, the lovely restaurant at our hotel. A traditional carvery dinner at Simpson's on the Strand is a must, as well as a pre-theater pub dinner at the George and Vulture....both frequented by Dickens himself. Our Farewell Dinner will be at London's oldest restaurant, Rules, where sticky toffee pudding is on the menu for dessert! Afterwards join the tour leaders back in the lounge at our hotel for a hot toddy and a reading of "A Christmas Carol." This trip would be wonderful for families to share...grandparents, grandchildren, moms, dads and kids! In the spirit of Dickens, "God Bless us everyone!"

NOTE: For those wishing to stay on in London for a few extra days, just let us know and we can make arrangements with both United and the Renaissance for this to happen.

Dickens Christmas Package Includes:

Transportation from MCC to Dulles Airport
Roundtrip airfare on United Airlines from Washington Dulles to London Heathrow
Airport transfers and all necessary transportation to included activities in London
4 nights accommodations at the deluxe Renaissance Chancery Court
Welcome Dinner at QC restaurant, pre-theater dinners at Simpson's on the Strand and the George and Vulture Pub, Farewell Dinner at Rules
Theater tickets to two shows (specific shows to be determined, but they will be top shows)
Sightseeing tour of London including visit to the Dickens Museum and Westminster Abbey
Visit to Rochester Dickens Festival, with sightseeing in Canterbury en route
Visit to the Burberry Factory Outlet in Bethnel Green
Trip insurance valued at $115 per person
All taxes and gratuities

Trip #1005.240 COST: $2520 per person (Resident), $2620 per person (Non-Resident) based on double occupancy. (Single Supplement: $694) A $500 deposit is required to reserve your space. Balance due on October 1, 2004. Please make checks payable to Custom Group Tours Inc

For more information call:

Custom Group Tours Inc (703) 821-8188
McLean Community Center (703) 790-0123

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