PWE’s first quarter was packed with a wide range of events and experiences from multi-day conferences to sales incentive trips, foundation events and milestone birthdays. Never before has the first quarter been so busy!
BCU All Employee Weekend
Paulette Wolf Events leads the industry in producing complex multi-day events and that is exactly what we did for Baxter Credit Union (BCU). Every 5 years, BCU brings together its employee’s from near (Chicago) and far (Puerto Rico) to connect with each other and learn best practices. Over 550 employees attended this year’s 3-day conference at the Hyatt Rosemont. This conference included inspiring keynote sessions by influential speakers such as Scott Stratten and David Mead, as well as industry-focused breakout sessions led by key executives and managers. PWE designed and managed BCU’s custom conference mobile app that gave guests access to the overall agenda, speaker information, hotel map, communication and interaction between attendees, as well as allowed guests to sign up for breakout sessions and create their own schedule.
The main highlight from the weekend included the launch of the new BCU logo and brand! An Oprah style giveaway took place on the first day, which gave employees all newly branded BCU swag.
One week later PWE produced a surprise milestone birthday. This intimate surprise party began with a unique invitation. Each guest received a one-of-a-kind invitation featuring a blue velvet box with a large puzzle piece inviting them to a surprise party, giving directions to bring the enclosed puzzle piece with them and asking for five words to describe the guest of honor. Those words would later be showcased throughout the décor, video montage, entertainment and a birthday special gift of custom dinner plates with each guests’ words around the perimeter of the plate and with his/her name on the back. These plates were displayed at the party for all to view.
It was important to the host that every detail from the food to the entertainment, décor, gifts, flowers and photos were all comprised of the honoree’s most favorite things, including a giant chocolate chip cookie cake made by the James Beard Award winner, Mindy Segal. We brought in Cottage Inn pizza from the guest of honor’s Alma Mater college campus as well as her favorite frozen custard in Michigan, Gillies. We even had a McDonald’s food station serving burgers, fries and orange soda.
The main décor focal piece was an illuminated portrait of the guest of honor in a modern art style similar to Chuck Close. This art installation was also an interactive experience for guests. Guests used the puzzle pieces that they received in their invitation to assemble the photo. Entertainment included Live Band Karaoke and a surprise performance by Vertical Horizon, one of the guest of honor’s favorite bands.
Incentive Travel/Destination Meetings
An area of our business that especially excites us is our incentive travel and destination meetings and events. For the last 45 years, PWE has traveled across the world producing and managing these types of events for an array of clients. Recently, we produced sales meetings in Boulder, Colorado & Phoenix, Arizona consisting of private dinners, team building activities and all-day meetings with food & beverage and A/V.
HMSHost Channel Your Inner Chef Contest
PWE partnered with HMSHost to produce the 4th annual Channel Your Inner Chef Contest at Chicago O’Hare International Airport. This live cooking competition is highly anticipated every year and brings aspiring chefs from across the world to Chicago to compete in a timed cook-off. This year’s entertainment featured Hamilton’s Miguel Cervantes who performed songs from the Broadway musical Hamilton as well as covers for guests to jam to while watching chefs cook.
Foundation Events: Presence Health Gala & Camp Kesem Magic Ball
A prominent part of PWE’s business is partnering with foundations. Our first quarter contained fundraisers for Presence Health and Camp Kesem. The Presence Health Gala took place at the new Marriot Hotel at McCormick Place and featured a live auction, paddle raise and entertainment. PWE executes all of Camp Kesem’s Magic Balls nationally. Camp Kesem was able to raise over 2 million dollars over the four-city tour, which included Chicago, San Francisco, Boston & Los Angeles.
Bahamas Themed Bar Mitzvah
Q1 ended with a fun, Bahamas themed Bar Mitzvah at Three Dots & A Dash. Before entering the nightclub, guests walked the “red carpet” where they were photographed by paparazzi photographers. Once inside, guests were greeted with leis, sunglasses, hula skirts, and Three Dots & A Dash infamous cocktails/mocktails including their dry ice Infused Treasure Chest, Aloha Felicia, and Chief Lapu Lapu. Three Dots & A Dash passed hors d’oeuvres to include coconut shrimp, hanali spring rolls, thai fried chicken, and other Asian flared items. DJ Kareem acted as the emcee for the evening, keeping the kids entertained with interactive games, dances, and prizes. The food stations had an abundance of Lettuce Entertainment Restaurants dishes including Bub City’s Phoebe’s Mac N Cheese, SushiSan’s maki and nigiri rolls, FoodLife’s chocolate covered oreos and strawberries, and a selection of Summerhouse fresh baked cookies, just to name a few! Other vendors included Spin Spun, the all natural gourmet cotton candy station with pina colada, margarita, and other flavors that glowed in the dark, Jo Snow Cone, which passed boozy and nonalcoholic flavored snow cones in tiki cups & Record-A-Hit, which created a glow in the dark spin art area where kids could create their own spin art frisbees to take home. There were polaroid cameras on each table for guests to take photos with, or they could visit the Fab Photo photo station complete with surfboards, sunglasses, and other tropical props. The night concluded with Beaver’s Donuts food truck parked outside the venue for guests to enjoy a sweet treat as they left!