Some of Canada’s top automotive and consumer media gathered in St. John’s Newfoundland between May 14 and 20 for a drive event hosted by Ford of Canada.
In a province known for historical firsts (one of which was the reception of the world’s first transatlantic wireless signal by Marconi from an old abandoned hospital on top of Signal Hill), it seemed a fitting location for the debut of the Ford EcoSport in North America and first drive event in Canada.
The all new EcoSport is a sub-compact utility vehicle built for drivers who are looking to combine fuel economy with some very cool features like Apple Car Play and air conditioned glove compartments.
JGK Integrated Solutions Inc. was chosen as the logistics provider for the event and was on hand to ensure the East Coast experience was both seamless as well as fun for everyone.
The adventure began in St. John’s, Newfoundland where media gathered at the historic and trendy JAG hotel. Participants were allowed some free time to explore the city with EcoSport vehicles and were provided with numerous photo op locations. From there, it was off to the Fish Exchange Restaurant to sample some fine seafood and creative cocktails.
One of the biggest highlights of the event was the opportunity to experience the first sunrise on the continent at Cape Spear – the easternmost point in North America. This of course meant getting up around 4:30 a.m. – something that not everyone is able or willing to do! For those that opted in, the experience was worth it and led to some pretty cool photo ops.
Throughout the event, media was invited to drive the EcoSport to various locations and landmarks including Signal Hill, Conception Bay and Holyrood. Lunch was at The Station Diner in Holyrood, a popular restaurant located right by the ocean. After lunch, participants drove the Avalon Peninsula to arrive at Tetley Tea Room by the Sea for tea and biscuits.
Afternoons also included a boat tour adventure with O’Brien’s Boat Tours – a tour voted best boat tour by Newfoundlanders and included a trip to the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve – home to the largest Atlantic puffin colony in North America.
After seeing some incredible sights and seabirds on the boat tour, there was a chance to visit Petty Harbour for a mini aquarium tour. The day closed with arrival back at the JAG hotel and dinner at O’Reilly’s Irish Pub. But what would a trip to Newfoundland be without an after-party at another of the city’s numerous bars?
Seems you can’t become an honorary Newfoundlander without “being screeched” and having to “kiss the cod”, and event participants did just that at the optional after party at the Green Sleeves Pub on George Street.
Consumer media spent time at the Quidi Vidi Village plantation to meet artists and fuel up on coffee and snacks. Those who wanted more time to experience the EcoSport were invited to participate in optional urban drives including a trip to Signal Hill and the Rocket Bakery and Fresh Food.
Overall, the adventure contained many highlights including the opportunity to drive some very cool cars around pretty curvy and varied, yet stunning terrain. To some, witnessing the first sunrise on the continent will be forever engraved in their memory. For others, the world class hospitality provided by welcoming Newfoundlanders will be a memory forever to be cherished.
Regardless of what stands out the most for each participant, all were thankful to have experienced the rugged beauty of Newfoundland and all felt a sense of even greater pride at being able to call Canada home.