8 Company Picnic Ideas for Oregon

Check out all the awesome alternatives that you can bring to your Portland Company Picnic.

It’s April, and we are less than three months away from the hottest summer months for Portland and Seattle. If you aren’t knee deep in planning your summer corporate and non-profit special events yet, we’ve got a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing. Check out these 8 ideas below, and add your own in the comments section!

    • Forget a Picnic, let’s go on a Cruise! – Why do throw a company picnic at all? Mix it up and do something completely different. If your group isn’t too large, booking a cruise can be a ton of fun! Cruise ships can have nearly all the normal attractions of a regular company picnic, such as food, drinks, and dancing, with the added benefit of some spectacular views and a new experience. They can also be quite cost effective, while having the feel of being more luxurious. Reach out to a local Portland Curise company to see what kind of potential your event could have. Bonus: much of the entertainment equipment you would rent for a company picnic you can put on a boat. Work with your local Portland Event Rental company to see what options you may have.
    • Put Together a Crazy Wipe-Out-Esque Obstacle Course – Have you ever seen the television show Wipe Out on ABC? The basic idea is that contestants make their way through a very difficult obstacle course and try to reach the finish. Along the way, they have some truly spectacular “wipe outs” and some never finish. By putting together a string of inflatables and other obstacle course rentals, you can make your very own Wipe Out obstacle course. Start with the Boulder Dash, Lagoon of Doom, and some Tires, and build from there. Work with your coworkers to come up with unique ideas. Bonus: Offer prizes for whoever can finish the fastest, complete the course with the most flair, or can perform the most spectacular wipe-out!
    • Invite some Truly Stunning Entertainers – If you’ve done the same thing for your company picnic year after year, consider hiring some outside entertainment to spice up the event. Booking Bands, Magicians, Comedians, and Hypnotists are all crowd favorites. Picking a unique type of entertainment year to year can keep your event interesting and new for at least a decade.  If you are working with an Event Coordinator, make sure you ask them if they have access to any special kind of entertainers, or recommendations for your Portland event.
    • Have a Chili Cook Off or Similar Culinary Focused Event – If you’ve done the same Barbecue catering company every year, maybe it’s time to mix it up. Organize a catering company to bring side dishes, appetizers, drinks, and desserts.  For the main dish, host an old fashioned chili cook off. Have all of your guests bring a large pot of their famous family recipe. Have all of the attendees do a sampling and vote on their favorite chili. Give out prize to the best chili in attendance!
    • Make it a Giant Water War – There are so many great water rental options in Portland.  From dunk tanks, water balloon launchers, water slides, slip n’ slides, and more.  If you are confident that your event is going to land on a hot Oregon summer day, perhaps getting your guests wet is the way to go.   Incorporate traditional picnic games like water balloon toss and prizes to keep things competitive. Sometimes the best way to heat things up is to cool off!
    • Create a Unique Theme – Ok, we admit it, Pirates, Western, and Circus are old. They’ve all been done thousands of times. Mix your Portland Corporate picnic up with some new and unique themes (preferably ones that Portlandians are totally into).  To really get your theme going, throw a costume contest with some sweet rewards to go along with it. Here are a couple unique theme ideas if you need a push start,
        • Brewery Themed Event – Empty Kegs everywhere, Take-home pint glasses with the company’s name and picnic year on them, a sweet bar setup with a ton of local beer choices, An on-site beer brewing demonstration, Hops plants brought in for decor. There is so much you could do with this theme.
        • Renewables Themed Event – The environment is important, why not throw an event that celebrates that! Make outdoor furniture such as tables and chairs out of recycled pallets. Highlight ways that your guests can save energy and recycle. Make an arts and crafts station that uses only recycled materials. Give out Swag that saves energy, such as LED bulbs, Outlet Insulators, and Water regulators. Getting your attendees excited about a cause can be a lot of fun. As a bonus, you can hopefully start some ongoing conversations around the office, and get your employees participating in worthy activities.
        • Steampunk Themed Event – As Wikipedia puts it, Steampunk is a subgenre of science fiction and sometimes fantasy that incorporates technology and aesthetic designs inspired by 19th-century industrial steam-powered machinery. Basically you get some awesome decor that looks like the future melded with the early 1900’s. Portland is even hosting a Steampunk conference this year, called GearCon, so it is likely that at least some of your employees have heard about this cool theme. Get together with a reputable Portland decor company, and let your imagination run wild.
    • Throw a Raffle – Free stuff is always a fantastic way to boost attendance. We have one Event Partner that has their entire event based around a raffle! They buy about $20,000 worth of prizes, and raffle them off to their employees. Employees must be present to win! They typically have a couple of large gifts, such as flat screen TVs that they give away at the very end. Everybody likes free stuff, and even if they don’t win, they definitely get the impression that the company cares about their employees.
    • Host a Traditional Outdoor Company Picnic – Sometimes, classic is best. Great food, music, the outdoors, entertainment, and some great company is all you really need for a successful event.  Spend some time selecting the right vendors for your Oregon picnic, and you are all but guaranteed to have a hit on your hand.  If your picnic is going to be at a Portland Park, make sure you check out our guide for booking events in Portland Parks.

If you have some other fantastic ideas for turning your company picnics upside down, make sure you leave them in the comments below! You never know what new idea might turn into the next event craze!

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Preparing for March Madness

March Madness Tournament

Start your spring off the right way by celebrating March Madness!

March Madness is quickly approaching! The NCAA sponsored tournament is a chance for sports fans everywhere to cheer on their favorite college basketball teams. This once a year event is popular all over the United States. Take advantage of the three week tournament by hosting a March Madness event at your company.  Throwing a party will boost employee morale and kick off Spring the right way. Here are some ideas to get you started:

 

1. Fill Out Brackets

Most basketball fans love to guess who will win the championship by filling out a bracket and competing with their friends to see who gets more of the games correct.  Start an office pool to go to whoever predicts the most wins. If you want to discourage gambling, buy some prizes and give those away in lieu of money. Even if one of your coworkers knows nothing about basketball, there are always upsets, and it will encourage them to follow along in the fun with the possibility of winning a prize at the end.

 

Rent a Satellite Receiver for your event!

Who knew you could rent these?

2. Bring in Satellite TV

Make lunch breaks more interesting by having the games on. The Seattle Games2U Franchise will bring out 50″ Plasma TVs with remote satellite receivers and leave them there for the duration of the event. Setup some chairs in the break room and let your employees have at it. Don’t forget to bring chips and dip so they have something to munch on. When the games aren’t on, you can have the latest basketball video game running on the TV. Sure your productivity levels might drop, but you will build employee loyalty and happiness.

 

3. Rent Interactive Entertainment

If staring at glowing boxes isn’t your idea of a good time, maybe you can go for some more interactive entertainment instead.  Pop-A-Shot rentals are always popular among kids and adults, no previous basketball experience required! If you are looking for a different twist on the classic double shot hoop game, check out this unique basketball inflatable. Participants compete to get rid of their basketballs first. Every time a shot is made, it returns to their opponents side. It is a race against time to see who can make their shots faster.  If you want to get really crazy, you can rent a bungee basketball game. Two players compete to make 2 baskets first, the only catch is that they are harnessed to a massive bungee cord. Every time they get close to the basket, they are yanked back. One of these interactive options is guaranteed to spice up your March Madness event.

 

4. Have a Potluck

No event is complete without food. Everyone eats and hosting a potluck is the best way to include everyone in the festivities. Have a custom basketball cake made. Host your potluck as close as possible to the final game, Monday April 8th. Encourage everyone in the office to bring in unique food and find a way to present it as a basketball theme. If you want to serve hamburgers and hot dogs, consider renting a propane grill and putting it in the front of the office. We don’t think April is too early to start barbecuing in Seattle!

Whatever route you decide to go for your March Madness festivities, you will be sure to create some memories! Feel free to post your march madness party ideas in the comments section below.

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