Seeking Advice on Finishing Red Alder to More Resemble Cherry

I have just completed the building stage of the Classic Cherry Bed from Plansnow.com. Because of cost and stock availability, I substituted Red Alder in place of Cherry. I am quite happy with how this project has come together, thus far, and I am now looking for advice on finishing.
First of all, finishing isn't one of my talents. Typically, I stay away from stains and any finish that requires skill, patience or technique. My preference has been to use tongue oils and similar applications that basically are fool proof and yield pleasing results.
For this project, however, I want to stain the Red Alder to more resemble the Cherry wood that was called for in the plans. I also want to apply a durable finish as this project is intended for my 9-year-old's bedroom. I am looking for recommendations on technique and products to achieve this result. Any guidance would be much appreciated.
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With regards from the Rudson Family
snipped-for-privacy@shaw.ca
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Rudson Family wrote:

I used to be like you. Hated finishing. Then I read Flexner. And then I read it again. Ever since, I have been very pleased with my finishing efforts. I'm even starting to enjoy it!
C
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Chris Merrill
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Check out M L Campbell Woodsong II Cherry stain. Wipe on, wipe off and it looks just like real cherry. This is not an oil stain; and will work with solvent or waterborne finish of you choice.
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Alan Bierbaum

Web Site: http://www.calanb.com
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