And still ticking

TRAVEL SMARTS

May 20, 2001

To honor its watches and its nearly 150-year history, Timex has launched the Timexpo Museum in Waterbury, Conn., where the company was founded. Exhibits include artifacts and memorabilia, letters from Mark Twain, a design-a-watch craft center for kids and loads of material tracing the development of the watch manufacturer from its 1854 beginnings. (For more information, check out the museum's Web site, www.timexpo.com.)

Here's a look at the evolution of the Timex timepiece:

* 1854: The Waterbury Clock Co. is born, producing mantel and shelf clocks capable of keeping a week's worth of time between windings.

* 1880s: A sister company begins manufacturing the country's first inexpensive pocket watch. For the most part, the watches are assembled by women because their fingers are said to be the right size for the exacting work.

* 1920s: The U.S. Army has the clock makers reassemble their Yankee pocket watches into convenient wristwatches for World War I soldiers. Civilian versions are soon to follow.

* 1933: Mickey Mouse has his mug put on a watch for the first time.

* 1950: The Timex makes its debut as the world's first inexpensive mechanical wristwatch; soon comes the slogan "takes a licking and keeps on ticking."

YMCA adds value to a New York trip

The YMCA (which stands for Young Men's Christian Association, but it caters to both genders and all ages and religious beliefs) wants travelers to keep it in mind. The New York City YMCA (http: / / ymcanyc.org) is promoting package deals at its four city locations that feature private rooms, shared baths and low prices.

Facilities in Queens, Brooklyn, midtown and Vanderbilt on East 47th Street are offering rooms for about $75 a night (compared with $200 and up at other city hotels), and the price includes unlimited use of exercise facilities, saunas and pools. The Vanderbilt and midtown locations offer housekeeping, air conditioning, cafes and televisions in the rooms. In addition, three- to eight-day packages ($115 to $399) are available with some meals and city tours included.

For a free accommodation and reservation guide, which lists the New York details as well as those for Y's in Los Angeles, Boston, Miami, Hong Kong and Hamburg, Germany, call 212-308-2899.

No need to be lost at sea

THE map company ADC has long been known for its popular street guides, but the company also publishes guides to getting around on the water. It has just released the seventh edition of its "Chesapeake Bay, Maryland & Virginia Chartbook" ($50), a sailor's resource that charts the tributaries, fishing areas, waterways, obstructions and artificial reefs within the Chesapeake Bay.

Marina facilities information, a fish identification guide, glossary, park listing and lighthouse locator round out the offerings. The book is available online at www.adcmap.com or you can call 800-232-6277 to find out where it's sold locally.

-- Tricia Bishop

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