Olympia – Jan/Feb 2018
Seaside – Jan/Feb/March 2018

Happy New Year and Hello!

Happy New Year

Meet your new managing editor, Courtney.

January Letter from the Editor:

It’s all about the stories. Sometimes it hits me when I’m passing people on the sidewalk, stopped at a traffic light or looking out my airplane window at all of the homes below – everyone has a story. Each person in the world has stuff going on – joys and sadness, hopes and dreams, traditions and new experiences. And each of those people lives in a village/town/city/state/country/region. Personally, this is why I travel. I want to experience a slice-of-life that enables me to step into their existence. We are connected by our stories and that’s what makes the world a smaller place.  

Here’s my story. My name is Courtney Drake-McDonough and, as of January 1, 2018, I am the new owner and managing editor of I am humbled and excited to be taking over this digital travel magazine with a culinary bent from Bobbie Hasselbring, who has grown from a simple idea in 2009 to the successful, international site people go to for information, reviews, ideas and inspiration it is, today.

I live in Colorado, a place that has its own stories to tell (and I’ll be telling some of them). I’ve been working in journalism and marketing my entire career, helping people tell their stories. I started writing about travel back in college when I had a regular column encouraging the out-of-town students to explore their new, adopted state. I’ve been writing about food and travel ever since, in one way or another.

Loyal readers have known and loved RealFoodTraveler for years so I’m not going to mess with what’s already working. But for those readers and all of the new ones coming to us, I’m going to add to what’s working to offer you:

  • Articles written by experienced journalists you’ve already come to know here, as well as writers new to the site whose work I think you’re going to love. They all want to convey to you their excitement about the people, places and things they’re discovering on their travels.
  • Videos and podcast interviews that take you to new places using your other senses to further experience the world and the stories going on in it.
  • A free e-newsletter for subscribers with exclusive content and opportunities for giveaways of goodies that foodies and travelers will love. You’ll also be the first to receive our latest articles. Scroll down to the bottom of the homepage to get on the list.
  • An enhanced presence on social media where we’ll share new stories, tips, wisdom and where we can chat a bit. Get social with us and please follow/like/share with us on the following places:

Facebook – @realfoodtraveler
Twitter – @realfoodtravel
Instagram – @real_food_traveler
Pinterest – @realfoodtravel

While I might be at the helm of, I consider this a group effort with the writers who can’t wait to tell you why you need to go to the place they just returned from; the advertisers who want you to know about the place they live or the products that make life better; and especially you, dear readers. Whether you need guidance for your next trip or just want to dream a little, is for you.

It’s a new year and a new beginning. Let’s all begin this journey together because we have so many stories to tell. Happy New Year!



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Courtney Drake-McDonough

Courtney Drake-McDonough, RFT's Publisher and Managing Editor, is an award-winning writer, editor and photographer based in Colorado. She is passionate about the food world and loves to write about all aspects of it. She is also a social media marketing specialist and is the editor of two blogs,, covering restaurants, theater, movies and travel, and, a travel site helping people with different interests enjoy the same trip, together.

2 thoughts on “Happy New Year and Hello!

  1. Bobbie Hasselbring

    Yay for you, Courtney. We’re confident you’ll take in fabulous directions. Welcome and Happy New Year.

    1. Courtney Drake-McDonoughCourtney Drake-McDonough

      I couldn’t do it without the wonderful, strong foundation from you, Bobbie! So glad we’ll all still be able to enjoy your travel journeys here! Happy New Year!


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