Happy Monday!!!! You guys today is a great Monday because I’m writing to you RIGHT NOW from the comfort of my bed. Don’t you just love when you get days off of work? You get to do things you normally don’t during the day and it’s just the best. Like this morning, I went shopping at Michaels, did a DIY for our kitchen table and worked out. It’s been so dang nice!
But let’s not forgot the reason most of us have the day off. Because of Martin Luther King Junior, we can all look at the world a little bit differently. Because of him we’re reminded that hope and timeless values (like courage, truth, compassion and humility) are so so so important. His words are inspiring to Americans every day of the year. And through his example, we learned to love unconditionally, and that forgiveness and nonviolence are the way to solve so many problems. (Even if we forget it every now and then.) It is today that we especially remember to always strive for The Dream of equal opportunity for all.
PS… this is for all you teachers / mommas out there. If you’re looking for an AMAZING book to help explain to your children the life and achievements of MLK, you have got to purchase Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This book is beautifully done, and I promise you that you will love it. It tells the story of his life, while weaving Martin’s “big words” from his famous speeches throughout. It’s a must own (especially for all you elementary teachers) in my opinion!
Now, on to the reason you’re all here! This Mitten Monday I’m sharing a super fun event that comes to Detroit’s COBO Center every January… The North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). 5 years ago, Trev and I were in town for a hockey game at The Joe, which is right next door to COBO. We over estimated how long it would take us to get there, and ended up being in town 4 hours before the doors even opened to the game. My dad said “Hey! I think NAIAS is going on. You should walk over.” So we did. And you guys… we loved it!
Let’s start with the basics.
What is NAIAS? The North American International Auto Show is where you can experience the next generation of transportation every year. From world premiere vehicles, to the newest, most innovative technology in the auto industry, you’ll find yourself wandering through over 500 cars from your favorite automakers absolutely awestruck. It is the largest, and most prestigious automotive showcase in the world.
When is NAIAS? The Auto Show comes to Detroit every January for two weeks. The first few days are always “previews” for big wigs in the field, media and charity. However, it opens to the public for just over a week. This year, the show started on January 8th, and runs until January 22nd. Which means you still have time to get to The D!
When is it open? You can head to NAIAS any day from 9:00 am until 10:00 pm (with no admittance after 9), except for the final Sunday, when it is only open until 7:00 pm.
Where is it? NAIAS is at The COBO Center, in Downtown Detroit.
How much does it cost? Tickets are a steal at only $13 a piece, $7 for seniors (65 or older) and $7 for children (ages 7–12). Children 6 and under are free.
Now… what are the best insider secrets? As a visitor to the Auto Show for the past 5 years, we’ve gotten a routine that ALWAYS works out for us.
Avoid the Crowds. Okay.. avoiding crowds at the Auto Show is practically impossible. However, we have found that the sooner you get your butt up and going, the less people will be there. Now, I’m not saying you have to be the first in line, but we find that late morning/early afternoon gives us the least amount of crowd time. Around noon, most people are trying to find lunch. So eat a big breakfast, and head for a late lunch after the auto show!
Make Parking Easy. Park at Greektown. This is ALWAYS our go to whenever we head into Detroit. Parking downtown can be crazy expensive, especially during big events like The Auto Show or a Tigers/Lions/Wings game. We like parking at Greektown because A) It’s usually free, B) it’s really not that busy and C) it’s literally right off of the freeway. I know what you’re thinking if you’ve ever been to Detroit… Greektown is NO WHERE NEAR COBO. Don’t worry… all you have to do is…
Take the People Mover. The People Mover is Detroit’s public transportation system and you guys, it’s so simple to use! Parking at Greektown means you are parking right next to a people mover station. (The easiest way to reach it, if you don’t have children with you, is walking through the casino.) You can hop on for only 75 cents each ride! So cheap, right? Bring quarters with you to cut the line, but if you don’t have quarters, there are machines where you can trade money for tokens. It’s a short ride from the Greektown stop to COBO.
Don’t buy your tickets online. Unless you get super anxious or are coming from far away and are worried tickets will sell out. (They won’t… but order online if it helps ease your anxiety!) There are kiosks when you get there where you can purchase tickets with your card super quickly, or there are people waiting at a counter where you can purchase tickets with cash. Bring cash, and purchase your tickets. I swear there is ZERO line whatsoever. We waited 10 minutes just to pick up our etickets, and the line to purchase with a card was even longer. Speaking of cash…
Bring cash for inside the show too. They sell snacks and drinks all around the auto show. They also have a coat check for $3.
Expect to see a lot of Ford and GM. Detroit isn’t known as the Motor City for nothin’. We pride ourselves on being the headquarters of Ford and GM, and well, the Auto Show definitely reflects that. While you will see plenty of other auto makers (luxury included) the biggest displays you will see will be the “hometown heroes” for sure.
Grab the freebies. You’ll find that everyone on the show floor is giving away something for free… take a bag and grab what you can! You never know what fun stuff you might find!
Take a camera. Or have your iPhone fully charged and ready to upload to Google Photos. You’re going to want to take lots of pictures! The cars are SO SHINY it’s impossible not to want to take a picture of every. single. one. Plus, you get to sit in most of the cars. So if you’ve always wanted to know how you’d look driving a brand new Escalade, now is your chance.
Don’t expect to spend your entire day there. Yes it takes awhile to go through all the cars, but I’m telling you, it probably won’t take you as long as you think. So plan to do something else while you’re downtown. I’d suggest heading back to Greektown, grabbing lunch at Pegasus (amazing Greek food!) Pizzapapalis (outstanding pizza) or Wahlburgers (if you haven’t had their burgers… you need to) and then grabbing dessert at Astoria bakery.
And my number one tip for heading to the Auto Show? GO AND HAVE FUN. I promise… even if you’re not a car lover, you’ll love it. Here are a few pictures I snapped from this year’s auto show!
I hope you all have a fantastic Monday! How many of you will be watching The Bachelor this evening?! Don’t tell me what happens! We’re heading to UDM to see Trev’s teams play some basketball. I won’t see it until tomorrow evening!
I’ll talk to you all tomorrow!