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National park tips: Before heading to the Washington Monument, make sure the elevator is working


From April 16 through May 11, the city of Perth (much older than the one in Australia) hosts Europe's largest brass band festival. Beginning June 28, the National Trust for Scotland will stage a three-day "brutally realistic" re-enactment of the 700-year-old Battle of Bannockburn, when Robert the Bruce trounced the English. From July 23 to Aug. 3, Glasgow hosts the Commonwealth Games, a sporting hullabaloo that includes rugby, badminton, squash and more. In late September, Gleneagles Hotel (pictured) in Perthshire will host the Ryder Cup golf matches. On Sept. 18, Scots vote in a referendum on independence from the United Kingdom.
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