The event started out with an early morning tour of the General Motors Plant in Arlington with Chevy.
Since the luncheon was being held at the Sheraton in Fort Worth, we all parked our vehicles there and road over to Arlington with Chevy. They brought out several of their new vehicle models for us to test drive.
I road over to the GM Plant in the back of a 2015 Chevy Silverado with another blogger and was given the opportunity to drive the 2015 Chevy Tahoe back to the Sheraton for lunch.
Once we arrived to the facility in Arlington we sat through a safety presentation and then had the chance to chat with some inspiring women. Several of the supervisors at the factory are women. Just proves engineering is not only a male’s career. Several of the women have their master degrees and a couple of them were currently going back to school for their masters, thanks to GM for providing them the college fund. I love when companies offer tuition reimbursement!
Once it was time for the tour we all piled into a tram with a driver and guide. There were even little speakers in front of each set of seats so we could hear her all the way in the back.
I have attended press conferences at the GM Plant in the past but this was the first time to have a full tour. I knew the factory was large but never imagined how much went into building each vehicle. I was amazed at what all we learned. The GM Plant runs on a three shift work day, so vehicles are being built literally 24 hours a day. In December of 2014 the Arlington GM Plant rolled out their 10 millionth vehicle!
Throughout the tour we were able to see each step in the car manufacturing process.
All the employees were hard at work and even though they were on a time table they still took a moment to wave, say hello or smile. Every worker was extremely friendly. I was impressed. Since they build roughly 1,140 vehicles a day I would have expected them to never lift their eyes to even acknowledge we were there, it was quite the opposite.
The testing garages run a vehicle up to 60mph all while stationary. This tests the engines and other performance. It was interesting to see these vehicles being tested. You could hear them running as if they were flying down the highway.
The factory was several stories high and there were conveyor belts transporting car parts throughout the entire building. Things were always moving and the line was at a constant flow. I believe if I went back tomorrow I would probably see another dozen things I missed the first time around. There was so much!
If cars interest you at all or even if you just have the desire to see the behind-the-scenes action, I recommend you sign-up to be notified when GM offers public tours. They are hoping to have tours available by this summer. You can check the GM Plant in Arlington website for updates and info. Everyone on our tour found it fascinating, not just men. The tour would be a great educational experience for your kids.
Once we arrived back to the Sheraton in Fort Worth we were welcomed with cocktails & mocktails (non-alcohol version). Several other companies were setup and ready to chat with all of the bloggers. It was nice to have a meet & greet before sitting down to lunch.
The ladies from Hexbug were there to showcase some of their amazing products. My kids have the little hexbugs that they have received in their stockings before. We even have a small track for our handheld creatures. However, I had never seen the larger ones in person. They are awesome. My son loves robotics and has been counting down the days until he reaches third grade and can join the program at his school. Learning that Hexbug partners with local schools for the STEM program was beyond intriguing. I had no idea.
Hexbug sent each of the bloggers in attendance home with their own Ant to build. I know my son will have this robot on his wish list for his upcoming birthday. Even the adults at the luncheon had fun playing with him. He is remote control and you can make his little hands grab things which was fun to play with at lunch. I saw him carrying around a napkin while rolling across the floor often.
Two representatives from Consumer Electronics Association flew in for the event. Since this was a Tech & Travel Roadshow they showcased some of their after market car products. It was interesting to hear that you can buy items for your older cars that weren’t always standard when you bought the car. Did you know there is a bluetooth adaptor to play music from your iPod in a vehicle without bluetooth? I know several people that would love to own that. They also gave a presentation and shared a few products that you can purchase to track your vehicle. This would be useful for safety reasons as well as for teenage drivers.
When it was time for the appetizers Chef Ana came out from the Sheraton’s kitchen and demonstrated her famous guacamole. She sent us home with the recipe. Instead of just instructing us on how to make the guacamole she told us how to pick the best avocado and jalapeño. I didn’t know the little white stripes on a jalapeño is how you determine the level of spiciness.
Our lunch was just as delicious as it looks. Sheraton offered me a gluten-free version. I love how knowledgable and accommodating they were on food allergies and diet restrictions.
The Fort Worth Sheraton is currently undergoing some major renovations. Some of which are complete. The rest should be done by early summer. Their new rooms are so spacious. They gave us a tour and I can’t wait to book a staycation there soon.
Visit Fort Worth was in attendance and even though I was born and raised in Fort Worth, I have to admit there are things to do in this town I haven’t done. It is our family goal this summer to venture out into our own town more instead of only traveling out of state for vacation.
Full Disclosure: I was invited to this event along with other local bloggers at no cost. I was compensated for my time helping with event coordination.
If you are not local have you visited Fort Worth? If so what was your favorite thing to do? What tech accessory do you wish your vehicle had?