Vaporpalooza Recap: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Just the other night, I touched down in Phoenix after having spent the last five days in Grand Rapids, Michigan for Vaporpalooza 2018. And, dare I say, I am still catching my breath. If you’ve never heard of Vaporpalooza, it’s basically a massive event held annually for businesses, purchasers, distributors, and employees. In order to vape, connect, learn, and then repeat again. It’s also an opportunity to advocate for vaping rights. And of course, a chance to party! Here is our Vaporpalooza recap.
The Mt Baker Vapor team — Joe Chacon, Jessica Gonzalez, Josh Hanna and I — landed in Grand Rapids, Michigan on Thursday, March 22nd, to heaps of dirty snow piled high from a brutal winter storm the previous week.
We were all dressed in our winter gear — thick jackets, hats, and gloves. All except for Josh Hanna, our daring sales manager, who soaked up the frigid Michigan weather in nothing more than a pair of shorts and a t-shirt. Some people, go figure.
After receiving the keys to our Ford Escape rental car, we loaded up our bags and drove off.
A Brief History of Grand Rapids
A historic furniture-manufacturing center, Grand Rapids developed on the banks of the Grand River, for which it is named after. The city is said to be home to five of the world’s leading office furniture companies. For this, the city holds two nicknames— the Furniture City and the River City. The city and surrounding areas are economically diverse. The countryside bordering the metropolitan area is flat and narrow, surrounded by steep hills, bluffs, mixed forest, and farmland.
After driving twenty minutes through Michigan’s second largest city, the voice on Google maps announced our arrival. Our Airbnb was located on a nice, quiet street called College Ave. Century-old homes with small, yellowing front yards ran the length of the tree-lined avenue. Fallen leaves littered the driveway as we pulled up.
Our house, which was a little over 2,000 sq ft, looked like the setting of a creepy horror film. During the day, all the various nooks and crannies piqued our interest, while at night, those same corners gave us the chills. All in all, the house was intriguing and frightfully comfortable.
The following morning was our day to set up our booth. In order to save you from the uneventful activities that led up to the construction of our booth, I have attached a few images for your viewing pleasure:
The event known as Vaporpalooza kicked off on Saturday morning. Previously, when we arrived at the venue to set up, I had my doubts about the event based on the location and the look and feel of it all. But come Saturday, boy was I wrong. The place filled up in a matter of minutes. Vapers of all shapes, colors, and sizes arrived with their tickets and mods. Some of the most renowned e-cigarette companies in the industry were in attendance with their very best e-juice and hardware. While businesses connected with other businesses, consumers looked for their next tasty e-juice to buy and sell. The main stage held beautiful performances and speeches on vaping advocacy — not to mention some incredible cloud chasing contests.
Vaporpalooza was an intense two-day event. And rather than throw word after word into your face, I’ll let the images do the talking from here on. Enjoy:
Especially relevant: Last Wednesday’s Blog