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A flashback to winter as the hotter months roll in

The Hot Ticket Winners receive a warm welcome to paradise.

As temperatures rise, the not-so-long-ago blizzards of this past winter seem a distant memory. But for the staff at Dolphin Encounters and Blue Lagoon Island, the early months of 2015 will always be memorable; it was then that they hosted the lucky winners of the Today Show Hot Ticket contest.

In March, the Dolphin Encounters team got a chance to give a warm welcome to a particularly excited group of visitors from the north, when the Today Show brought its Hot Ticket winners to sunny Blue Lagoon Island.

Open to permanent, legal residents of the U.S., who are over 21 years old, the Hot Ticket contest offered the chance to escape the cold weather to those who met the contest’s entry requirements. To be considered for the contest, applicants had to submit a photo along with a 500 word essay on why they should be chosen to be the Hot Ticket winner. Alternatively, entrants could nominate another person who they felt would be deserving of a Hot Ticket prize.

Three winners were selected by a panel of judges based on the originality and creativity of their submissions. The successful trio, with their families and friends, were treated to roundtrip airfare; a four-day, three-night stay at the exclusive One&Only Ocean Club on Paradise Island; transportation to and from the resort; three meals daily and – of course – a day away at Blue Lagoon Island.

With plenty to see and do at the lagoon, the winners and Today Show Meteorologist Dylan Dreyer had their fill of entertainment. Kicking off the day with tropical drinks, the day trippers wasted no time in making their way to the shore. Paddle boats and water bikes complemented swimming with the dolphins and the iconic dolphin foot-push. The day was a momentous one for winner Aida Cordero, who got to live out her dream of swimming with the majestic mammals.

“It was a very hard experience because I always wanted to swim with the dolphins, but I don’t know how to swim. So I was very afraid to get in that water, but I got over my nerves,” she said.

Happy to wash the winter blues away with aqua waves, the Dolphin Encounters and Blue Lagoon Island teams are now putting their best feet and fins forward to beat the summer heat. You can keep up with the latest news and deals for the summer months on Facebook.