It may not feel like it, or look like it, but it’s officially spring! Congratulations, everyone, we made it! We survived another winter and got through the last snowstorm (fingers crossed) of the season. Pretty soon we won’t need our jackets anymore, tulips will be blooming, and this snowy, long winter will be a fond memory.

To celebrate the season change, we spent the weekend in Kingston and caught up with some friends. Last night, our hosts at the Church des Artistes hosted an exquisite dinner party where we toasted to the vernal equinox. While we’re here having all this fun, bumping into friends, making new ones, and celebrating all this goodness, we thought it was the perfect opportunity to announce our next getaway giveaway–to Kingston!

Sponsored by our friends at Kingston Wine Co. and Milne (whom, notably, are ex-New Yorkers who now call Kingston home) we have an huge jackpot for the winner including:

• 2 night stay at Church des Artistes
• $100 Milne gift card
• 2 bottles complimentary wine at Kingston Wine Co.
• Breakfast for two at Grounded
• Dinner for two at Armadillo
• Two tickets to any show at BSP Kingston

Pretty great, right? I could hardly believe it myself. It’s practically a free vacation to the beautiful and historic Rondout section of Kingston, set right on the Hudson River. All you really have to do is show up. Most of your meals and shopping are already taken care of!

Here’s the deal: tag your photos #EscapeBrooklyn on Instagram for the chance to win the entire package. Whether it be the Botanical Gardens in Queens or hiking Breakneck Ridge in Cold Spring, flex those creative muscles and show us how you “escape” the hustle and bustle of New York City.

We found ourselves daydreaming of this escape on our own–here’s what we’d do:

Friday: Arrive early evening, stop into Kingston Wine Co. Thank them for co-sponsoring this contest along with their neighbor, Milne! Grab your two bottles of complimentary wine, then head over to Church des Artistes to check-in. Share your bottle of wine while unpacking and start getting used to the thought that you’ll be sleeping in a 150 year old church all weekend. Once you’ve digested that, take a five minute stroll to Armadillo where your first free meal awaits you. Kick back and enjoy the warm weather on the patio, and don’t pass up the salsa and chips! Stumble back, finish that bottle of wine you started at the Church and hit the sack because Saturday will be a long, warm (!) and wonderful day. Saturday: Wake up in a church, let your hosts cook breakfast for you. It’s out of this world. Walk over to main street and peruse the shops up and down the hill. Stop into the beautiful antique and vintage store Milne where you’ll have a $100 gift certificate waiting for you. Thank them. Shop. Maybe thank them again. When you’re done there, head to “uptown” Kingston for more great shopping, restaurants, and stuff to do. (Check our Kingston post for much more on that.) For Saturday night plans, definitely check the schedule for BSP Kingston–in fact, you may want to choose your weekend based on the schedule there. If nothing’s going on, Stockade Tavern is a lovely place to sip on fancy cocktails all evening, and Keegan Ales has really great beer. Sunday: Say farewell to the Church des Artistes with a heavy heart, but get excited to nurse that hangover at the delicious (and free) meal awaiting you at Grounded. Grab some of their amazing coffee and pastries or fill up on their fresh farm-to-table lunch menu. Say hello to Linda for us and grab some treats for the trip home!

Don’t forget to hashtag your travels while you’re there, too! Here’s what we’re guessing your Instagram feed might look like:
















The fine print: Winner will be selected Sunday April 5. Winner will be picked by us, based on creativity, aesthetic, clever hashtagging, and whatever else we decide. If you win, you’ll be contacted via private message but also blasted on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook with the winning photo. You must hashtag #EscapeBrooklyn and you must be following @EscapeBklyn. Please keep submissions “current”–do not hashtag photos of your vacation from 5 years ago! Dinner at Armadillo is good for $75. Breakfast at Grounded is good for $25. Once you’ve won, Kingston Wine Co. will email you with any final details. Prize must be claimed by fall of 2015–that shouldn’t be too hard, right?

Thanks for all the support and good luck! We can’t wait to see your amazing photos.