How to Build the Perfect Haunted House

Nothing says October more than a spooky haunted house! Not only is it a fun fall staple, but an imaginative ghostly manse also can be a great way to promote your business or treat your employees and their families. At SHW, we love working with our clients to design and produce creative and interactive haunted houses, appropriate for all ages. Want to get started on your own?

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Oct 10, 2018

How Lighting Can Transform Your Event

Thoughtful lighting design can make a huge impact on the success of an event. Not only can lighting transform the look of a space, it can amplify your message, set a mood for your audience, and infuse energy into the room.

As event planners, we look for ways to engage as many senses as possible to create an impactful experience.  Unfortunately, many planners overlook lighting as one.

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Sep 26, 2018

5 Days in... Tokyo.

At SHW, we love traveling to work with clients across the globe. Recently, we traveled to Tokyo for a client’s annual meeting. Tokyo is the most populous city in the world, and a hotspot for technology innovations, food, culture, and more. Here are some of our top tips for planning your next trip.

1. Japan is a foodie delight.

It is way more than sushi. Delight in the street vendors! My top.

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Sep 17, 2018

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles – and Pedicabs: How to get around in Portland

The tales of traffic woes in Portland are true. But don’t let that keep you from visiting this wonderful city.

As the 22nd fastest-growing metropolitan area in the country, Portland is growing at a good pace. With about 30,000 new folks moving to the area each year, the impact is construction detours, road closures,  and more cars. Traffic is no fun. 

One of the joys of Portland is how easy it.

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Sep 6, 2018

Unique Hotels: Are They Right for a Corporate Program?

As event planners, we know the right hotel can make or break a program. With so many to choose from—and each unique in its own way—matching clients to ideal hotels based on service level, group size, location, rates, and desired experience is a complex process.

Individual travelers now opt more for the “wow” factor when choosing a place to stay. Should corporate groups consider these same.

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Aug 23, 2018

Well, There Are the Goats.

If someone asks what gives Portland its friendly yet quirky reputation, goats come to mind.

Source: Lonely Planet

Portland was the epicenter of the pygmy goat yoga craze a few years back, and there’s a beloved community of 14 goats that is a must-see stop for locals and tourists alike. The latest on Portland’s goat craze? Goatgrams. A service where two dwarf goats show up with a bouquet of.

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Aug 10, 2018

5 Days in... Mexico City.

At SHW we love that our event-planning jobs take us all over the world! Recently we were in Mexico City for a medical research conference. As the fifth largest city in the world, Mexico City is a true melting pot of cultures with an endless variety of food, historical sites, and activities. Here are a few of our favorites:

1. Take Uber – but watch out for rush hours!

Driving (and parking) in.

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Aug 1, 2018

An Inside Look at SHW: Q&A with John Ellard

by Jonathan Sievert, Marketing & Operations Intern

John Ellard, Senior Vice President, Creative & Marketing

John Ellard recently joined the SHW team as SVP of Creative & Production. Over the past 25 years, he’s worked on some amazing programs any event planner would love to be involved with: Cannes Film Festival, SXSW, and Microsoft Xbox events, as well as many concerts, brand activations,.

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Jul 24, 2018

Outdoor Team-Building Activities Perfect for Summer

Whether you’re traveling or want to get out in your home city, team-building activities are a great way to get your staff out and about—and summer is prime season. Fast-paced race around the city? Relaxing day in the sun? There’s something for every organization! Here are some of our favorite outdoor team building exercises.

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Jul 11, 2018

SHW Named one of Washington's Best Companies to Work For!

SHW is honored to be named to Seattle Business Magazine’s 100 Best Places to Work in Washington for 2018.

Being named the #6 small business is both humbling and inspiring, as we are in great company. Ninety-nine other companies and 1,200 employees enjoyed festivities at the Washington State Convention Center, while listening to leaders share what makes their companies special.

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Jul 2, 2018

"Tourist trap... It's not!": An Aussie's Essential Guide to Pike Place Market

by Brett Robertson, SVP, Sales and Marketing

Anyone who’s travelled, even domestically, has most likely been the victim of a dreaded tourist trap. You know what I’m talking about. They’re the kind of place that’ll sell you an Eiffel Tower keychain for €15. Found surrounding a major attraction, you’ll get inflated prices, stodgy food and service, menus plastered with pictures of the food (which.

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Jun 15, 2018

5 Days in... Park City, Utah.

At SHW, we love to travel! This month, one of our favorite stops was Park City, Utah for a fun incentive trip with one of our clients. Not only is the town beautiful, but full of hidden gems and fun activities. While it’s famous for being the winter place to see and be seen on the slopes and at Sundance Film Festival, it’s also a blast in spring and summer. Here are a few of our favorite spots.

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May 30, 2018

How to Manage Risk Like a Pro at Your Next Event

When a suspicious package forced SeaTac International Airport to shut down for a few hours May 6, the situation set into motion alternative plans for SHW’s incoming clients. SHW Event Manager Natalee Giamalis was prepping for the arrival of 95 guests to the airport on their way to Seattle for an incentive trip, a week of wining and dining and exploring the city.

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May 14, 2018

Going Green to Save Green: Food Waste Revisited

by Lorie Thomas, SVP, Event Services

I was raised by parents who were thrifty and into recycling before it was cool. Their example has made me keenly aware of waste and the need to reuse resources whenever possible.

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Apr 25, 2018

#MeToo: How You Can Help Prevent Sexual Harassment at Events

Since the #MeToo movement began gaining momentum in October, people from all professions have shared stories of workplace harassment. Six months later, the topic is still top of mind, showing how far the issue reached. The events industry is no excpetion.  

Ally Coll Steele is an attorney and President and Cofounder of the Purple Campaign, a non-profit organization to address workplace.

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Apr 12, 2018

Top 10 Things to Look for in a Meeting Space

by Cheryl Barnet, Sr. Manager, Site Sourcing, Registration & Housing

After years in hotel sales, Cheryl joined SHW to lead the hotel sourcing team. She now oversees the teams who deal with vastly detailed complexities around meetings and events: hotel contract negotiations, creative registration solutions, and conference housing management.
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Apr 6, 2018

5 Days in... San Diego.

The SHW office was missing a few of our Docksiders last week. Why? Because this month, SHW went down to San Diego to operate an awesome week-long program!

While Seattle is our home, our events take us to cities all around the world. As event professionals, it’s our job to always do what we do best for our clients, no matter which city we’re in.

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Mar 30, 2018

3 Virtual Reality Technologies for Your Next Event

by Addison Callaghan, Marketing Manager

Morton Heilig's "Sensorama" | TechRadar

The idea of virtual reality isn’t entirely new; immersive flight simulators were used to train pilots as early as 1929, and let’s not forget Morton Heilig’s “Sensorama” from the 1950s which used a combination of video, sound, small fans, smell generators, and vibrations to as closely as possible recreate a.

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Mar 21, 2018

The Do's and Don'ts of Pop-Up Restaurants

A modern version of 1960s supper clubs, pop-up restaurants have gained popularity recently. Pop-ups are temporary restaurants that are often held in unconventional locations. What’s not to love? The fleeting nature of pop-ups offer a truly unique experience, and it gives newer chefs a chance to showcase their skills, or established chefs to try out new ideas. It’s a win-win for any food.

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Mar 15, 2018

7 Unique Valentine's Day Ideas from the Event Experts

Valentine’s Day is synonymous with classic rose bouquets and fancy dinners. BORING. How about something a bit more surprising? Here are a few ideas to make this year’s Valentine’s Day one to remember.

1. Go wine-blending

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Feb 6, 2018

5 Ways to Give Back Through Your Event

Adding charitable elements to your event is a great and easy way to pay it forward in the community where you hold your event.

And while it can help engage your attendees and benefit your event overall, it can also make a positive impression on the community you’re visiting. Say you have a 4,000-person meeting and arrange to have leftover food donated through a local food bank. Chances are.

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Jan 17, 2018

The Rise of the Activity Pub

Why settle for just sitting around a table when you’re out with friends?  These days, it’s getting easier to find a pub that’s more than talking and drinking. Take SPiN, for example, which is opening their new Seattle location this month. When they opened their flagship location in New York, the idea of a bar completely centered around ping pong was pretty groundbreaking.

It makes sense too.

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Jan 5, 2018

7 Things to Do in Seattle If You Still Need New Year’s Eve Plans

If you’re still at a loss for plans here in Seattle, no need to worry! Here are 7 ways to ring in the new year, whether you’re looking for dancing and DJs, or a quiet night out with the kids.

1. New Year’s Eve pARTy at Chihuly Garden & Glass

Located at the base of the Space Needle, Chihuly is opening up The Glasshouse for a party with drinking, eating, dancing, and a perfect view of the.

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Dec 30, 2017

3 Large-Batch Cocktails to Make Hosting Easier

There’s a lot of moving parts that go into hosting holiday gatherings. There’s the food, music, drinks –  and of course making sure everyone has a good time.

Festive cocktails don’t have to be an extra thing on your plate that takes away time with family and friends. Here are our favorite large-batch holiday cocktails to have ready before the party starts, so those early guests can serve.

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Dec 22, 2017

Holiday Shopping for a Big Traveler: 3 New Technologies to Watch

Holiday shopping for a big traveler?

Luggage technology continues to make seriously cool strides, so you might want to consider a new carry-on or luggage device for the business traveler in your life. Some of the industry brand leaders are coming out with some useful – and surprising – features.

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Nov 30, 2017

‘Tis the Season to Celebrate. Secrets to Hosting a Last Minute Holiday Party.

The holiday season is coming up quickly, and there’s a lot of pressure to host a great party. We get how easy it is to forget, or get too busy. You don’t have to stress though-- there’s still time to plan a holiday party that people will be talking about for years with some helpful tips from the pros here at SHW.

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Nov 21, 2017

Your Brain on Events: The Neuroscience Behind TEDxSeattle


At its core, TEDxSeattle is driven by the intention to spark conversation and bring together a community. On November 18, thousands of guests will fill McCaw Hall who share the common goal of learning something new.

The TEDxSeattle team brought together 14 speakers this year that come from a wide range of backgrounds, from the co-founder of the Pacific hyperloop to a critically.

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Nov 16, 2017

How Events Like TEDxSeattle Come to Life: Blogs Worth Sharing


“We chase ideas, not speakers.”

That’s the goal of TEDxSeattle, says Lee Gibbs, co-chair of the speaker team. “Notoriety isn’t nearly as valuable to us as a new idea that will ignite our audience’s imagination and allow them to see the world in a fresh way.”

TEDxSeattle returns to McCaw Hall on November 18 with 14 local speakers who will address this year’s theme, “Changing.

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Nov 8, 2017