Woo hoo for 2015’s BlogHouse Milwaukee!!
What is BlogHouse?
BlogHouse is a mini workshop taught by top tier bloggers at Navigate Media Group to up & coming bloggers with a lot of sass and spunk to grow. They teach + talk & mentor about blogging and more specifically – travel & food blogging. I’m very happy that I accepted the invitation and while I was familiar with some of the material, it was great to get a reminder on what I was doing well and what I….wasn’t AND getting the kick in the butt to start! haha.
Where did you guys stay this year?
This year, our group of bloggers stayed at the Potawatomi Hotel & Casino. It’s a large hotel with a casino on two floors and you know me and my Asian blood…I had to gamble at least a little bit while I was there.
Breakfast was held in our conference room every morning with some sweet snacks in the middle of our long sessions. The hotel bed was SO comfy, it was so hard to roll out of the big soft bed with four silky-soft pillows snuggled around you.
Besides each of us getting our blogs audited for design, content, and advice, there were various topics on each & every social media outlet, newsletters (I need to build mine…I know), and media kits as well as pitching to DMOs and tourism boards as well as some technical website stuff.
Besides the vigorous note-taking and Q&A sessions, we were in-daunted with goodies from our sponsors. Some of these gifts…because I *just* have to share with you:
+ A wonderful sleek black flask set from Potawatomi Hotel & Casino
+ A set of spices and recipes from Visit Milwaukee
+ Bottle of Whiskey
+ Coffee Tumbler from Potawatomi Hotel & Casino
+ Gift cards to wine & dine and shop all over Milwaukee
+ Packing Cubes from Eagle Creek!
+ Travel Undies from Exofficio (yea!)
+ Sodas of all different fun flavors
+ A cute travel cocktail kit
(Can we guess the theme of Milwaukee here with all the alcoholic-related gifts?) 🙂
What did we do?
Besides our workshops, we explored Milwaukee as much as we could! Some highlights included:
+ Private Tour of the Harley-Davidson Museum
I am a huge fan of motorcycles. In my younger days, I was all about sport bikes but as I’ve gotten older, the idea of riding on a cruiser sounds like a much better idea. The museum is huge and I loved the design and architecture of the building. Our tour guide was lively, enthusiastic, and happily answered all of our questions about the history of Harley-Davidson and how it came to be a lifestyle versus just something you rode around on two wheels with. Once I decide to put down some roots, I’m definitely going to consider getting a bike again.
If you’re ever in Milwaukee, I do recommend stopping by to cruise the museum.
+ A visit to the Uber Tap Room & Cheese Bar
We could NOT go to Milwaukee and enjoy two of the finest things they have to offer: Beer & Cheese
I love craft beer and have an infinite love towards cheese although I usually pair my cheese with some wine but nonetheless, anything alcohol-related gets no complaints from me.
Not only did we enjoy a board of various cheeses and accompaniments but much more including some bomb grilled cheese sandwiches, bratwurst, hot pretzel with melting gooey cheese to dip with, and fried cheese curds. Milwaukee showed it’s true colors here.
+ Lakefront Beer Brewery Tour
Rated as the #4 best beer brewery tour in America on TripAdvisor…of course, we couldn’t wait to go. It can’t hurt to learn about the stuff I’m addicted to on a daily basis anyway. Our guide here was hilarious, loud and full of bad jokes that had us rolling. Try to make minimal eye contact as he will make you the subject of a bad joke OR make you a volunteer to participate in the bad joke.
On the tour, you get FOUR pours of samples and these are not dinky little samples people. A pour is about 6 oz so you can be sure that at the end of tour, you’re going to be more than buzzed and happy with all the different tastings.
I tried the Riverwest Stein – an amber ale and Organic White – an organic Belgain white ale with orange peel and coriander. Verdict? I recommend both. Be sure to tip the guides at the end since that’s how they make that paper! Oh and you get a souvenir glass to take home!
During the whole four days, we were fed by Bartolottas’ restaurants and what a delight it was. The first night during the welcome reception, we were able to sample a dish or two from each of the different restaurants under it’s chain. Delicious and A+ in presentation which I think is very important!
Industry Night was held at The Rumpus Room – another fun night of beer, wine & cheese with lots of socializing and networking with PR and marketing of Milwaukee and getting to know our fellow BlogHouse bloggers a bit more!
+ Milwaukee Public Market
I adore public markets and this one at Milwaukee did not disappoint. It was crowded + bustling with full of hungry & happy people patiently waiting in all sorts of lines for whatever they could munch on. I spent so much time exploring the market that I didn’t have time to explore the surrounding area!
Our mentors were uh-mazing not to mention Katy from Visit Milwaukee who was just the hostess with the most-est with her enthusiasm for working with bloggers and Tourism Boards. I was put under the guidance of Kate McCulley from Adventurous Kate and not only did she give me honest feedback and advice about Generic Dreams but we had a great time walking around town at night getting our drink on.
Lisa Lubin from LL World Tour was the sweetest and you can definitely tell she knows her way around show biz and the travel writing world. Cailin from Travel Yourself – seriously brought the most laughs out of everybody and was very helpful in answering our questions. Michael Tieso and Stephanie Yoder – a dynamic travel blogging/digital nomad couple brought so much to the table with their expertise in the technical side of blogging, storytelling, and networking.
Thank you everybody who was a part of BlogHouse. I am so happy and grateful to have taken in a part of this event and cannot wait to see you guys around the globe!
My Fellow Bloghouse Milwaukee bloggers who you should totally stalk as well:
Mel Hattie – melhattie.com
Laura Leigh Goyer – theculinarytravelguide.com
Jessica Dawdy – waysofwanderers.com
Barry Best – worldlynomads.com
Yaimani and Yadira – thetworiveras.com
Erin Southerland – dontforgettoeat.com
Bethaney Davies – flashpackerfamily.com
Adelina Wong – packmeto.com
Lauren Marinigh – twirltheglobe.com
Megan Stetzel – forksandfootprints.com
Pola Henderson – jettingaround.com
+ Many thanks to Potawatomi Hotel & Casino, Visit Milwaukee, Travel Wisconsin, Flipkey and Bartolotta’s Restaurants.for sponsoring 2015’s BlogHouse Milwaukee. As always, no fakin’ in the makin’ – all thoughts and opinions are mine.