Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Press trip - Day 1/2

Greetings from Clayton County Georgia, located just south of Atlanta. I'm here for a press / PR trip, and I hope I am able to sell several stories based on my travels here.

Yesterday was an early morning. Actually, I only dozed when I went to bed Monday evening at 7:30ish. At the stroke of midnight, the alarm sounded its beep and I prepared myself for the three hour drive to Omaha to board my 6am flight. I must have been dozing during that flight, too, because I don't remember flying over the Mississippi River. At all.

Then I had a short layover in O'Hare. Grabbed a breakfast panini - pretty good - but could have kicked myself for paying $4.5o for a bottle of H2O. Of course, I didn't know it was that much until she rang up my order and I'd handed her the money. Big bottle that lasted all day, so it is ok.

Arrived in Atlanta around noon and was greeted by a wonderful person from the CVB. Had a wonderful box lunch from The Honeyham Sandwich Company. Thick pieces of ham on a kaiser bun, pasta salad, cookie, pickles, and chips. It was too much!

The first event for the 10 journalists on this trip took us to Clayton State University, a former community college that has evolved into a four-year institution. Beautiful campus full of charming lakes and lots of trees.

Here, we ventured to Spivey Hall. We were greeted by the college's president and several "friends" of Spivey Hall. Wonderful appetizers featuring local cheeses (double cream brie, provolone rolled with thin piece of prosciutto and sundried tomatoes, smoked mozzarella), fresh fruit (think figs, raspberries, blueberries) and a variety of interesting crackers.

Dinner featured onion-braised Flat Iron Steak (not Nebraska corn-fed, I'm sure), Southwestern Chicken Breast, Peruvian rice pilaf, sesame green beans (with a Chinese flavor twist), grilled asparagus with lime butter (very good), and rolls. Dessert meant three options: strawberry cake, tres leches with fresh berries (excellent!!) or deep dutch chocolate cake.

We adjourned to the performing arts auditorium where we enjoyed a classical exhibition of the Albert Schweitzer Organ. The hall is one of America's leading recital halls and is praised internationally for its acoustics. After an up-close-and-personal with the organ and stage, we walked down a hall of fame showcasing some of the performers in the hall's concert series.

Beautiful beginning to this trip. Today's schedule has us visiting seven different venues! Better get my walking shoes ready!

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