Participants in the second â€œJohn Heald Bloggers Cruiseâ€ â€“ taking place aboard the newly refurbished Carnival Fantasy from New Orleans in February 2009 â€“ will not only enjoy five fun-filled days sailing with the popular senior cruise director, but they can also make a difference in the lives of local residents.
The â€œBloggers Cruise Community Service Dayâ€ will take place in New Orleans on Friday, Feb. 6, 2009, the day prior to the departure of the second annual cruise â€“ a five-day voyage to Cozumel and Progreso, Mexico, operating Feb. 7-12, 2009.
Partnering with the cityâ€™s Beacon of Hope Resource Center, â€œBloggers Cruise Community Service Dayâ€ participants will clear debris and plant trees, helping to spruce up a neighborhood in New Orleans that sustained significant damage from Hurricane Katrina.
Carnival is also partnering with Maison St. Charles Hotel & Suites to provide one- and two-night pre-cruise land stays at special rates for â€œBloggers Cruise Community Service Dayâ€ participants.
â€œI invite everyone to join me in helping the people of New Orleans and we look forward to working with the Beacon of Hope Resource Center in helping to beautify this magnificent city,â€ Heald said. â€œOnce on board, weâ€™ll enjoy Carnival Fantasyâ€™s â€˜Evolutions of Funâ€™ upgrades, as well as special events and shows just for my blogging friends. Itâ€™s going to be a brilliant cruise and I canâ€™t wait to see you there,â€ he added.
Added Heather Huth, director of volunteers for the Beacon of Hope Resource Center, â€œOur goal is to create an environment that encourages our residents to return home. Although we are proud of how far weâ€™ve come, there is still a long way to go. We are always in need of volunteer service and truly appreciate Carnivalâ€™s role in New Orleansâ€™ continued recovery efforts.â€
Following the hands-on charity activity, â€œBloggers Cruise Community Service Dayâ€ participants will be the guests of honor at a cocktail reception hosted by Heald which will serve as a kick-off event for the voyage.
During the five-day cruise on Carnival Fantasy, Heald will host a number of exclusive events, including a Welcome Aboard reception, trivia contests, question-and-answer sessions and even an exclusive â€œTea Time with Johnâ€ session.
Special photo opportunities with Heald will be available as well. A variety of special giveaways and logo items also will be provided to all â€œBloggers Cruiseâ€ participants, and Heald will, of course, be submitting posts to his blog throughout the voyage.
Carnival Fantasy was selected as the venue for the second â€œBloggers Cruiseâ€ as it is the latest â€œFun Shipâ€ to undergo all phases of the lineâ€™s â€œEvolutions of Funâ€ refurbishment program, which has resulted in a total transformation of the 2,056-passenger SuperLiner.
The upgrades include a â€œCarnival WaterWorksâ€ aqua park with a 300-foot-long water slide, dual-lane 82-foot-long racing slides and various water spray apparatus, along with â€œSerenity,â€ an adults-only retreat located aft and featuring comfortable chaise lounges and chairs and two oversized whirlpools.
The mid-ship pool was renovated and now offers a distinctly tropical ambiance, with thatched roofing, colorful umbrellas and other design elements. These renovations complement the first phase of the program, which included extensive refurbishments to a variety of public areas, as well as all staterooms and suites.
Reservations are currently being accepted for the Bloggers Cruise aboard the Carnival Fantasy Feb. 7-12, 2009, as well as the pre-cruise land stay at the Maison St. Charles Hotel & Suites. Participants must request fare code CPBL/FPBL when booking the cruise to be included in the 2009 Bloggers Cruise events.
For additional information and reservations, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit carnival.com.