I was one of 5 non-Miami based bloggers chosen and we traveled to Miami from Orlando on a Red Coach bus. It was my first time riding with them, and I was impressed. On the way down, we had a bus with “first class” seats that were a bit wider (only 3 to a row, instead of 4), and reclined about 45 degrees. Since I had to be at the Orlando bus stop a little after 5am, I was happy to have such a comfy seat to get a few extra hours of sleep on.
We reached the Miami airport around 10am, and were picked up in luxury SUV’s for our trip to the Bloggin’ Mamas Safety Academy event venue, Chef Adrianne’s Vineyard and Wine Bar.
We started inside the restaurant, where we sampled several of Chef Adrianne’s appetizers. As we nibbled, we listened to Danielle Bojanzyk talk about keeping kids safe in vehicles…and she would know, as she is the safety engineer and “SnugKid” technician for Nissan.
I was surprised by some of the statistics she listed, such as Hispanic infants/toddlers are 10 times more likely to be unrestrained in a vehicle, and that motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death or acquired disability for Latino children in the U.S.
Sobering numbers, eh?
We then separated into two groups so we could watch Ms. Bojanzyk demonstrate proper use of child restraints in a vehicle.
We also got to test drive a number of Nissan vehicles, such as the Rogue and the Armada – fully tricked out, of course. For being such a large vehicle, I was surprised at how smoothly the Armada handled.
But if I were to get a new Nissan, I think I’d choose the Rogue. It was a compact SUV, got fairly good gas mileage, and has three rows of seats, with 2 that can fold down for more cargo space. And I loved having the sun roof in the model I tested. I’ve never owned a Nissan, but I could definitely see myself in this car full-time.
When we got back inside, our entree was waiting for us: 24-Hour Braised Prime Beef Short Rib on a bed of sweet potato puree. I’ve been told it’s a customer favorite at Chef Adrianne’s, and one taste told me why. Perfectly seasoned, the meat literally melted in my mouth. I even forced myself to slow down my eating to fully savor the taste. The meal ended with a Nutella bread pudding. So. Good.
It was a perfect cap to the event that turned out to be both informational and fun! As an added bonus, I got to meet so many great fellow bloggers that I look forward to connecting with in the future.
Our return trip home to Orlando was on Red Coach’s “business class” bus, which featured the traditional 4-seat rows. At least these reclined, too, and I used the free wi-fi on the bus to do some work before taking a brief nap.
I would use Red Coach for traveling within Florida again, but I’d make sure to book the “first class” buses.
Many thanks to Bloggin’ Mamas and Nissan for putting together such a great event and for the cool swag bag featuring a Nissan-branded car organizer and a cook book from Chef Adrianne! Thanks also to the chef for hosting the event and for the delicious lunch (can’t wait to try out some of the recipes)! And a final thanks to Red Coach for hosting me on my travels to and from MIami!
I’ll be doing a post on the safety tips for my Huffington Post column this weekend, so keep an eye out for that (I’ll post the link here when it’s live).
Bloggin’ Mamas also put together this great video recap of the event for you to watch:
[Disclosure: I was hosted for lunch, and for travel to the event. As always, my opinions are honest, and my own.]
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