NATURE-NICE HOLIDAY: It's true that posh hotels and get-away-from-it-all resorts tend to fill up fast come the holidays, courtesy of more people having time off and more people getting together with extended families and more people wanting to go bigger at a special time of the year. So it is no surprise that lot of us dream about spending a Thanksgiving in a national park, ideally ensconced next to some fireplace with a hot toddy. But even if we can't get there this year, we can make a meal at home created by several chefs helming the kitchens in the lodges we'd like to visit.
DEER PARK TO EL TOVAR: Chefs from several Xanterra Parks & Resorts properties have created a multi-location, regional-fun Thanksgiving menu. But the chefs aren't merely tempting us with dishes like Beer Braised Pork Loin (from Deer Park) or Pumpkin Pie Crème Brulee (from Furnace Creek in Death Valley), they're providing the recipes, too. A little early holiday gift from a bevy of famous hotels. Make sure you tell your guests what you're cooking up, too, and from where. Impressed, will be the word, we bet.