possibility: Go to Florida for a quick day of fun
in the sun. I favor the Sarasota area because my parents lived
there some 10 years after retiring.
That song title comes to mind because we all get an extra
day this year to spend however we wish.
Leap Year gives us Saturday, Feb. 29. Now some people may
have to work that day, but many of us can pretty much grab that
24 hours with gusto and go anywhere, do anything (legal of course)
or just stay home and kick back.
I read about some people who used Feb. 29 four years ago
to do one good deed, or perform a random act of kindness that
day, devoted to helping someone or a group in need. I am sure
it made the donor feel better as well.
This column appears just four weeks before this free
day so you have all that time to plan what to doif anything.
It is sort of like dreaming what you might do if you win the
lottery, only this is a sure win.
Of course some of us would like to head for a warmer climate
by the end of next month, so here is one
Circle this free day on your calendar
and begin planning how you want to use this bonus 24 hours that
comes around only once every four years.
Checking the flight schedule for Southwest, I found that
you can fly out of Midway at 6:10 a.m. Feb. 29, land in Tampa
at 9:45 a.m. and stay until the return flight leaves at 7:55
p.m. You would be back in Chicago by 9:55 p.m. Not cheap for
one day in the sun, this round trip would be nearly $400. There
is a less expensive option; take Allegiant out of Rockford to
Saint Pete, but you would need to return on another airline.
While down there I would spend the most time in and around
Sarasota, visiting the Ringling Art Museum, maybe have some clam
chowder or oysters at Phillipi Creek or the Siesta Key Crab &
Oyster Bar, then head out to the beach for a couple hours of
tanning. I love to see the Manatees, those big sea cows, so a
visit to the aquarium is a possibility. Then head back to the
airport. For those willing to extend their visit into Sunday,
a stay overnight at an oceanfront hotel is an option.
If you are looking for a no cost way to spend
24 hours, you could binge watch several seasons of Downton
Abbey, The Crown or Game of Thrones
on TV. Or for a small cost (skip the $6 popcorn) take in three
or four movies if the ones you like are within a reasonable driving
I would like to hear what other people plan to do or did
on Feb. 29 so email or call me by March 1 and I might have some
material for another column. Dont send a postcard while
on your dream trip as it wont arrive in time to meet my
Only 29 days left to make it happen!