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Panera Bread’s Top Teachers Contest, Spring Menu & Warped Blogger Humor

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If there’s anything I love it’s great teachers and great food.

Last night, Panera Bread had both for Denver-area mom bloggers as we learned about Panera’s Top Teachers contest and sampled their spring menu.

Panera’s Top Teachers

Honor your favorite teacher by creating a video up to one minute long or writing a 100-200 word essay, and upload it here. You and your teacher could win a Tablet, $1,000 for your school and more.

Grades Pre-K through 12 are encouraged to enter between now and May 1, 2012 and there are three different age-group categories. One student and teacher will each win an iPad2 and the school will receive a $1,000 grant.

Don’t forget to honor all of our amazing teachers during National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 7-11, 2012!

New Spring Menu

Panera Bread rotates many of its seasonal offerings and we were able to sample a few of them:

Low-fat Chicken Tortilla Soup–Corn, Poblano peppers, black beans, cumin and more.

NEW roasted turkey Fuji apple salad–All-natural roast turkey, mixed field greens, tomatoes, red onions, pecans, Gorgonzola, apple chips and white balsamic apple vinaigrette.

New-and-improved turkey artichoke panini–All-natural roasted turkey, baby spinach, roasted red peppers, caramelized onions and artichoke-parmesan spread on asiago cheese focaccia.

Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich–Sweet peppadew peppers, feta, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and cilantro hummus on tomato basil bread.

NEW Pesto Sacchettini Pasta (my favorite)–Purse-like pasta filled with sizes all-natural cheeses in a basil pesto sauce.

NEW Tortellini Alfredo
–Three-cheese tortellini in a rich Alfredo sauce.

NEW low-fat peach nectar smoothie with ginseng
–Perfect for a summer day, this refreshing treat had a blend of strawberries, peaches and lemons.

. Yum.

Yes, was sampled and loved them all. Be sure to head over to Panera Bread and try them today.

The Moms

Most bloggers aren’t exactly introverts (understatement) so I issued the challenge during introductions to share something the group didn’t already know.

That’s when the party got started.

A pregnancy was announced, Sarah divulged she was a surrogate for a couple in Israel (she will be writing about that for us), it was Rajean’s 22nd birthday (again) and new mom Tara stole the show when she deadpanned,

“I’m in a mixed marriage.”

Insert long, awkward pause before she continued.

“I’m on Twitter and my husband isn’t.”

Special thanks to Panera Bread for hosting! Be sure to drop us a line if you would like to be included in our events.

Amber Johnson
Author: Amber Johnson

Amber is the founder and editor of Mile High Mamas. She is a passionate community builder and loves the outdoors. She has two awesome teens and is happily married to a man obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

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  • comment avatar Janel April 11, 2012

    Too funny! I’m a big fan of Panera and will check out the contest.

    How do we get invited to these?

  • comment avatar Amber's Crazy Bloggin' Canuck April 11, 2012

    Drop me a note and I’m happy to add you! amber at milehighmamas dot com.

  • comment avatar rajean April 11, 2012

    Gah! You just had to mention that my 22nd birthday was a repeat! Actually, come to think of my actual age, I’ll take that! It was a wonderful evening and Panera Bread gets props for excellent service, innovative, fresh food with lots of great flavor mixtures and for supporting the community by offering programs like the Top Teachers, Operation Dough-Nation, Earth Day, Wish for Wheels – pumping millions into area charities. Well done. My favorites of the tasting were the low-fat Tortilla soup, the turkey fuji apple salad and the pesto pasta. Winners! My kids very much enjoyed the pumpkin muffin for breakfast this morning. Thanks, Panera!

  • comment avatar Jo April 11, 2012

    It was a great evening! My son and I were already discussing his entry for the Top Teachers competition on the way to school today. Thank you Amber, and Panera for getting us together.

  • comment avatar Ratna getcluedIn April 11, 2012

    It figures I am stuffing my face in the picture— I was so engrossed in the food I didn’t even know you were taking a photo. There are two things I love in life: food and sleep 🙂 haaa

    Great event- our hosts and servers were gracious and the food was amazing— I love all the vegetarian options too!

  • comment avatar Lori Lavender Luz April 11, 2012

    I love Panera. Though I couldn’t go last night, I’m make up for it somehow in the near future. Yum!

    Sounds like some fun announcements were made!

  • comment avatar Daria April 11, 2012

    Such a great menu! And it sounds like a ton of fun (of course how could it not be with the guest list?) Sorry I couldn’t make it – Next time!

  • comment avatar Sarah April 11, 2012

    Last night was a blast and the food was delicious! My secret could have easily been “I have never been to Panera before,” but I didn’t think of that until later. Needless to say, I will be going back!

  • comment avatar Catherine April 12, 2012

    I already loved Panera’s food but after hearing that everything is made fresh daily and they donate the leftover food at the end of the day to different organizations I’m truly smitten. I’m a sucker for companies with healthy food *and* social conscientiousness. It was a fun night with good food and friends! Thanks Panera and Mile High Mama’s!

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