10 milestones that will inspire travel in 2019

Grand Canyon
Sunrise paints the Grand Canyon with swaths of golden light.
(Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

This year the Bauhaus movement marks 100 years of Modernism, and baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson scores a new museum in New York City. Here are 10 milestones that will inspire travel in 2019.

100: Grand Canyon National Park

An awestruck Teddy Roosevelt sought to protect the Grand Canyon after a 1903 visit, declaring it “one great sight which every American should see.”

For the record:
11:15 AM, Jan. 04, 2019 An earlier version of this story said the Jackie Robinson Museum would open in the spring. It is expected to open in December.

He was right. Although the canyon is about 6 million years old, the national park marks its 100th year with a star party June 22-29.

Astronomers will set up high-powered telescopes on the North and South rims and show you planets, star clusters, galaxies and more in some of the clearest night skies in the country. Of course, you can revel in the canyon’s daytime splendor too.


Info: Grand Canyon National Park 2019 Star Party

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100: Pebble Beach Resorts

One hundred years ago, Samuel Finley Brown Morse decided a sweet spot on California’s Central Coast would provide a timeless, natural setting for a resort and golf course.

The now famous scenery along 17-Mile Drive (to drive costs $10.25 per vehicle) hasn’t changed much in the last century, but other things have. A new visitor center tells the resort’s history through photos and interactive exhibits.


The 119th U.S. Open Championship will take place June 10-16 at the golf course. The must-see draw for the non-golfing crowd: the bagpiper who plays at sunset every day at Spanish Bay, a chance to reimagine the Pacific as the Scottish Highlands.

Info: Pebble Beach Resorts Visitor Center

100: Jackie Robinson

Some say there are more statues (at least eight) of baseball icon Jackie Robinson than any other player. Last year a statue honoring No. 42 sliding into home was erected outside Dodger Stadium.

Robinson was born Jan. 31, 1919, in Georgia. His adopted hometown of Pasadena has memorialized the Hall of Famer and his brother Mack, a silver medalist in the 1936 Olympics, with two bronze portrait heads near City Hall.

Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier in 1947 when he joined the Brooklyn Dodgers, and he later was known as a champion of civil rights. Robinson’s legacy will be on display through artifacts and interactive exhibits at the Jackie Robinson Museum, set to open in in New York City in December.

Info: Jackie Robinson Museum

100: Bauhaus School

How do you celebrate a century of Modernism? Throughout 2019 museums and galleries around the world will host exhibits based on Germany’s short-lived but revolutionary Bauhaus School. Bauhaus’ radical guiding light is still reflected in city skylines where sleek, unadorned buildings continue to rule.

Bauhaus opened in Weimar and moved to Dessau and Berlin before being shut by the Nazis in 1933. Each school still stands.


Last year, UNESCO expanded the number of buildings at its Bauhaus World Heritage Cultural Site. Centennial celebrations include a kickoff 100 Years of Bauhaus Festival in Berlin from Jan. 16-24 and a new Bauhaus Museum Dessau, set to open Sept. 8.

Info: Bauhaus Museum Dessau; 100 Years of Bauhaus Festival

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100: Reno Rodeo

The West lives on at the Reno Rodeo in Nevada, where visitors can witness authentic work traditions that have shaped the cowboy experience.

The rodeo is preceded by a cattle drive (June 15-20) in which cowboys move a 300-strong herd from Doyle, Calif., to the streets of downtown Reno. You can watch the buckaroos do their thing for free.

Rodeo visitors can expect to share the experience with about 140,000 spectators who come to see cattle roping, barrel racing, bull riding and more. The event, sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Assn., will take place June 20-29, with a parade June 22.

Info: Reno Rodeo

100: Great Molasses Flood

Don’t believe the expression “as slow as molasses in January.” Shortly after noon on Jan. 15, 1919, a vat of fermenting molasses at 529 Commercial St. exploded in Boston’s North End, sending a 2.3-million-gallon tsunami through the neighborhood.


The goo killed 21 and injured 150 unsuspecting souls, sweeping houses off their foundations and a train off its tracks.

How did this happen? In recent years, a structural engineer looked into the disaster and blamed the vat’s poor construction. Fluid dynamics scientists surmised a sudden drop in outside temperature turned the molasses from a harmless runny trickle into a viscous killer.

On the city’s waterfront near Copp’s Hill, you’ll find a plaque that marks the spot where the tragedy occurred a century ago. (The plaque is marked on Google Maps.)

Info: Boston Molasses Flood plaque

100: Edmund Hillary

New Zealander Edmund Hillary, was 33 in 1953 when he and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay were the first to stand atop Mt. Everest. He wrote in his autobiography about the ferocious, icy winds the two faced on the world’s tallest peak: “Tenzing called it the roar of a thousand tigers.”

Now a new orchestral composition honoring Hillary’s 100th birthday (July 20) bears that name. “Roar of a Thousand Tigers” will be performed July 27 by New Zealand’s Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in honor of the man who was given a state funeral when he died in 2008.

After the big adventure, Hillary worked to improve the lives of the Sherpa people through his nonprofit organization, the Himalayan Trust. To remember Sir Ed, as he’s called, visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre and a statue of him gazing at the peaks in Aoraki/Mt. Cook National Park on New Zealand’s South Island.

Info: Christchurch Symphony Orchestra; Aoraki/Mt. Cook National Park

100: American Legion and the Treaty of Versailles

The American Legion began in 1919 out of concern for disabled and sick World War I veterans. Its mission expanded to include championing the rights of veterans of all conflicts and wars, and the passage of laws such as the G.I. Bill in 1944.

The organization plans to mark its centennial on Nov. 11, Veterans Day.

This year also marks the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, the document meant to put an end to World War I. It was signed inside the grand palace on June 28, 1919, but peace didn’t last long.

Germany signed the document under protest, setting the stage for an even bigger conflict two decades later. Visit the palace’s Hall of Mirrors to learn more about the document and its history.

Info: Château de Versailles

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50: Apollo 11 Moon Landing

The moon landing on July 20, 1969, was the culmination of NASA’s Apollo mission. Americans watched, spellbound, as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin step onto the moon’s surface, making good on President Kennedy’s promise made in 1962.

To mark the milestone, the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington will display the spacesuit Armstrong used on the mission, and the Armstrong Air & Space Museum in the astronaut’s hometown of Wapakoneta, Ohio, will host a Summer Moon Festival featuring astronaut presentations.

The town of Flagstaff, Ariz., which takes pride in being the training ground for the Apollo 11 astronauts, invites the public to hike to moon-like landscapes at Meteor Crater and Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, and to visit local observatories.

Info: Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum; Armstrong Air & Space Museum; Flagstaff’s Lunar Legacy

30: Fall of the Berlin Wall

The wall dividing East and West Germany was a physical symbol of the Cold War from 1961 until Nov. 9, 1989.

To experience the border wall, examine the concrete pieces (which have since been decorated by artists) that stand outside 5900 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles.

In Berlin, the Berlin Wall Trail gives bicyclists and walkers a sense of the route patrolled by East German border guards. To remember those separated from loved ones for years, runners can join an organized 100-mile run (sold out for Aug. 17 and 18, though some spots will be available April 4) held each summer.

Info: Berlin Wall Trail; Berlin Wall Race

Twitter: @latimestravel

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