5 Baller Beaverton Venues for your Next Oregon Event

5 of the Best Beaverton Venues

Ponzi Vineyards in Beaverton, OR

 

Beaverton is the 5th largest city in Oregon, and home to over 80,000 residents. It’s sometimes referred to as the ‘Silicon Forrest’ a nod to it’s Silicon Valley similarities, even if it isn’t quite the same size as the California giant. With successful companies and cheerful residents comes bountiful celebration! Beaverton has some awesome venues, and we wanted to take the time just to highlight a few of them for your consideration if you are in the planning stages of your next Beaverton event.  If none of these options strike you as perfect, reach out to us or another event planner to get help with Event Venue Selection.

McMenamins Murray and Allen Pub – website – Capacity: 30

McMenamins is known for maintaining a variety of event venues that can be used to host parties, meetings, weddings, and more. We want to take a second to focus on one of their pubs, Murray and Allen. With rustic food and a local selection of craft and self-made beers and cocktails, you and your guests will have an absolute blast here. The venue features some very original decor, with an animated sun smiling down on you, surrounded by hanging plants.  This is one of the more tight knit venues in Beaverton, so keep your guest list to 30 or less. A perfect spot for a small corporate meeting, wedding rehearsal dinner, or just a fun night out with some good friends.

Ponzi Vineyards- website – Capacity: 50

If the Murray and Allen Pub was a venue appetizer for quainter events, Ponzi Veineyards is the main course. This incredibly elegant venue is perfect for setting a tone of elegance and class.  Everything from their decor, to their menu, to their outstanding staff highlights this feat of professionalism.  The four course menus and local wine tasting is sure to wow your attendees. Perfect for corporate meet and greets, fundraisers, and of course weddings, this Beaverton venue is one that deserves consideration.

The Reserve – website – Capacity: 350

The Reserve Vineyards and Golf Course is a much larger venue.  Complete with large indoor meeting spaces capable of accommodating up to 120 individuals, this venue is perfect for larger professional gatherings or weddings with massive guest lists.  Bonus activities include wine tasting and group tee times on their golf course.  With your venue reservation, you get free access to their tables, linens, chairs, and basic AV equipment. They offer catering for an additional fee if you plan on also feeding your event guests.

Hotshot Billiards – website – Capacity: 120

This venue and the next one come with built in entertainment! Hotshot Billiards is a massive pool hall that can support groups up to 120 persons in size. They maintain 22 active billiard tables, which means if you are playing partners, up to 88 of your event attendees can be playing simultaneously! The pool hall features other entertainment options as well such as an arcade room, dart boards, and a classic jukebox.  The kitchen offers classic bar food such as burgers, chicken strips, and french fries, but the venue is open to groups bringing in their own catering if you want to “class it up” a bit.

Sunset Lanes – website – Capacity: 400

Our final venue on our Beaverton Event Venue highlight reel is Sunset Lanes, a local bowling facility.  With such large capacity, Sunset Lanes is perfect for hosting large corporate events where the focus in fun. Prices are based around two hours of unlimited bowling, but the venue offers multiple packages and additional services. Bowling, might seem a little hokey for an event, but anywhere where there is food, beverage, and fun is an excellent candidate for an event location. If you plan on inviting whole families, the bowling can help keep the little ones entertained as well.

What other Beaverton Venues stand out to you? Leave your favorite Beaverton venue in the comments below so that others can benefit from your experience and knowledge!

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Managing Portland and Seattle Weather when Planning Outdoor Events

rain doesn't have to ruin your next portland event!

Though most people recognize Seattle as a rainy city, Portland is pretty much tied for wetness.  The trade off for beautiful coastline and such vibrant green scenery is that we get to experience moderate rainfall for roughly 70% of the year.  Fortunately, if you were born and raised in this climate, you are quite used to occasional sprinkle, and it should not be a reason to forgo celebration!

Let’s take a look at some super easy ways to prevent a rain cloud from ruining your next Portland/Seattle Event.

Umbrella Bin

Does your event take place partially, or entirely outside? Prepare ahead of time by setting up a few umbrella bins. You can buy sleek umbrella bins off of Amazon or other online retailers for reasonable prices.  If you go this route, try and find a bin that matches your decor. Stock these puppies full of cheap large umbrellas. If it rains, your guests can simply grab one and share it among a few other attendees.  If you are worried about the bins being an eyesore, just tuck them in a back room or out of sight until you are sure rain is imminent.

Rental Tents

A more robust solution is to erect large tents for your event. Rental tents come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Most full size tents start at 10′ x 20′ and can grow to pretty much as large as you could possibly need.  With increase in size comes increase in cost and setup time. Tents over 30′ x 60′ in size will require more than three hours to setup and will typically need to be setup at least a day in advance. While tents can be expensive, they are incredibly effective at creating enclosed, rain-safe places, and can add an awesome decor element to your event. Just check out some of the awesome structures being built by Amazing Tent Company.

Rental Canopies

A more cost effective route than full tenting is to use 10′ x 10′ canopies. Many rental companies offer industry grade rental canopies for $100-$200. These canopies won’t provide a ton of cover for all your guests, but can be used strategically to cover other service partners you might have at your corporate event. Do you have a henna tattoo station? Cover it with a canopy. Do you have a catered buffet line? Cover it with two canopies. Do you have a beverage station? Canopy. It’s a quick, cost mindful way to keep your vendors happy and your services clear of water.

Outdoor Heater Rentals

Here is one that people don’t consider very often. Sometimes rain is not always the villain. When Portland and Seattle aren’t wet, sometimes they can be just downright cold. Consider renting a couple outdoor heaters for use by guest tables, in tents, or on the way into indoor sections of your venue. Rental heaters run off of butane or propane which can be supplied by your event rental company.  Propane from a single tank will run for 2-3 hours if the heater is on full blast the entire time. The rental of your heater generally will come with one tank, with additional tanks costing anywhere from $50-$200 depending on the size of the tank and the particular company you are renting from. Check with your rental company that they will handle the setup, fuel switching, and operation of these heaters. If you aren’t employing the company to stay onsite during the event, make sure you work with your event coordinator to insure that the heaters are monitored and refueled when necessary by their event team.

Indoor/Outdoor Venues

Perhaps one of the easiest ways to proactively protect your event against the elements is in your venue choice. Look for venues that have equal or complimentary space both indoors and outdoors. This way, should it start raining, it will be natural for your event guests to shift their way indoors to enjoy other aspects of the celebration.  Talk to your venue partner ahead of time to determine what areas are usable and if they have additional areas you can use in the case of rain.

Contingency Event Plans

While some of these ideas are great, it’s not always practical to rent a giant tent when you don’t know whether it’s going to rain or not. Work with your Seattle or Portland Event Partners ahead of time to come up with alternatives for space, activities, and more.  Your event rental person might be kind enough to load an extra tent on the truck for a small fee, but not charge you the full price unless it needs to be used. Work with your Seattle or Portland Bounce House Rental provider to come up with some backup indoor activities that can be switched to at the last minute. Event Planning, much like project management, is all about identifying risks and coming up with mitigation plans to avoid them or minimize the impact should they occur.

As a native Portlandian, a little rain never scared me, but not everyone attending events in Portland and Seattle share that same sentiment. What are your tactics for avoiding the rain and maintaining event attendee satisfaction?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Guide to Portland Park Party Planning

Portland Park events

If you are hosting a corporate picnic, public event, or children’s birthday party at a Portland Park, there are a few things you need to know prior to showing up on the day of your event. Portland parks and recreation department has many rules, restrictions, and fees to consider when you start the event planning process.  Make sure you understand all of the following requirements and restrictions before sending out invites to your guests!

Reservations

The first thing to check when you start planning your Portland park party is if the site you want is available. The Portland Parks & Rec website has an online reservation tool that can be used for both parks and other venues owned by the department.  In addition to being able to see what parks and venues are available, you’ll be able to access tools like maps, venue descriptions, and maximum capacities.  With Portland’s vast inventory of parks and venues, you should be able to find a location that fits your party, even if your primary choice isn’t available. As always, the earlier you start planning your event, the more options you will have.

Fees

There are a several different park fees that you should know going into the planning process. Parks are expensive to maintain, and there is additional liability the city takes on by letting you host a party at a Portland Park. The fees can vary by park location and what type of event you are hosting, but here is the basic rundown,

  • Park Site Reservation Fee: Starts at $21 for simple parties (like a birthday party) but can go much higher depending on the park and amount of space being requested
  • $100 Special Use Fee: If you are planning on your party being more than a simple barbecue, you can count on a special use fee. This is a fee that they will charge you for pretty much anything beyond the simplest of parties.
  • $176 Inflatable Usage Fee: If you are planning on having an inflatable or bounce house at your event, be prepared to pay the City of Portland $176 for each inflatable you have at the park.  This can get pretty pricey depending on how many inflatables you have, so make sure you prepare your event budget accordingly.
  • $66 Vehicle Access Pass: If you have any vehicles or event vendors that need to access the event location, each vehicle will need to have a $66 vehicle access pass. Again, if you have several vendors or a lot of equipment to be brought in, make sure you schedule these costs accordingly in your event budget.

Event Liability Insurance

For any event requiring the use of inflatables, bounce houses, or other specialty equipment, Portland Parks require that you carry a $1 million umbrella insurance policy and list the City of Portland as an additional insured on the policy. This is a simple enough task as long as you select a reputable event rental company.   Most established and licensed rental companies will far exceed the $1 million insured requirement.

Event Layout and Maps

Often there can be gas pipes, electrical, and sewage running beneath park sites. To avoid surprises on event day, send the parks department a layout map of your event ahead of time. The more detail your map has the better. This way, if there is an issue, the parks department will let you know ahead of time what needs to be moved. If you leave this detail to fate, you run the risk of a Park Supervisor telling you to move or shutdown an inflatable ride or bounce house on the day of the event.

Event Hours

Most Portland Parks are officially open from 8am to 9pm. Uless you do something about it, your event will need to end by 9pm.  Failing to evacuate the park by 9pm may result in a Park Supervisor asking you and your guests to leave at the peak of your celebration. To avoid this party pooper outcome, schedule your event earlier in the evening, or work with the parks department to request an exception to their traditional closure rules.

Alcohol at your Event

If you are planning on having alcohol at your event in a Portland park, the city actually has some pretty reasonable rules in this department. If your event is less than 50 people and everyone is bringing their own alcohol, you do not need to do anything. If your event has more than 50 people and/or the alcohol is being served or provided by a single entity, then you will be required to provide proof of insurance to the parks department.

 

If all of this is confusing in anyway, you can always consult the Portland Parks and Rec picnic guide or just give them a call with any questions you might have. We have found the representatives to be extremely helpful and knowledgeable in our conversations.  As long as you follow this simple guide and Portland Park rules and guidelines, you should have a successful event to add to the books!

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Inflatable Obstacle Course: Rental item of the week

Front view of a massive colorful obstacle course

Welcome to Rental item of the week, where every Thursday Bouncer Rental NW highlights pros and cons of a different rental item. We provide an in-depth review and suggestions on how to incorporate the rental into your next event. Our goal is to inspire event planners to be creatively bold and move outside the normal event scope. 

Welcome Seattle Event Planners! This week’s RIOTW is the inflatable obstacle course. The great thing about about obstacle courses is that they appeal to all age groups. Unlike a traditional bounce house that is only designed for kids up to age 12, teenagers and adults can participate in races. Most courses have separate lanes for the participants, meaning that parents can race against their children without risking a potentially dangerous interaction. The biggest cause of injuries in inflatables comes from larger participants falling on the smaller ones and obstacle courses conveniently rid events of this issue.

In addition to great safety features, obstacle courses can be incredibly large, impressive rental items that can help you theme out your event. They have high throughput, allowing two individuals to enter the ride approximately every 30 seconds (at least 240 people per hour). Rides with high throughput are always preferable for large events because of their ability to constantly entertain more guests. As opposed to a bounce house that can only service 6 to 8 children every few minutes, the constant flow of guests gives the added psychological impression of constantly moving lines.

So what exactly does an inflatable obstacle course consists of? Most courses consist of  four different actions; weaving, squeezing, climbing, and sliding. More often than not, the challenges present themselves in that order, though on larger tracks there can be multiple iterations of each. Participants start by weaving through multiple upright vinyl pillars. The pillars aren’t particularly difficult to get past, but when you are running through racing your best friend, they can definitely trip you up. Following the weaving section comes two horizontal vinyl columns so close together you can’t always see through them. You have to force the air out of the baffles and push your way through. The limited space makes this harder for adults than it is for children. Players will then encounter a wall of varying heights (depending on the obstacle course). The wall will usually have foot and hand holds and isn’t particularly challenging to climb, but doing so fast will take some serious effort. The final and most fun leg of the course is the slide. Guest will race down the slide (feet first!) and out the exit in attempts to be the first one out and rejoice in their glory.

If you want to increase the challenge, you can rent several obstacle courses, or incorporate other non-bouncy challenge items. Great options include last weeks Monster Trikes, mud pits, tires, and whatever else you might be able to get your hands on that is lying around.

So now that you have established that obstacle courses are definitely something you want to be a part of your event, how you can integrate the attraction into the overall mood of the party? Fortunately, these inflatables come in a large number of varieties. Match them to your events theme, or get inspired to create a theme from the one you choose to rent. Here are some examples of themed courses:

Wild West – Get your cowboy on! Clearly a good rental for Western themed parties. Other great events it can compliment are Chili Cook-offs, Rodeos, Ho-downs, and any other Southwest special occasions.

Treasure of the Caribbean – This pirate themed obstacle course is both impressive in size and decor. While it is an obvious choice for pirate themed events, you could also have it at a pirates of the Caribbean outdoor movie party, seafood cook off, or day at the pier.

Crash Course – The mother of all race car themed inflatables. This massive figure-eight race track is both challenging and great looking. A great centerpiece for any Nascar or Formula 1 party.

When booking your obstacle course rental, remember that these inflatables are typically on the larger side of things. If your event is indoors make sure you have ample room in a high ceilinged gymnasium or conference space. If outdoors, just make sure your party area is large enough and you plan for the footprint of the ride accordingly. Thanks for joining us for this weeks Rental item of the week. We look forward to setting up an obstacle course at your next Seattle company picnic location.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Boost Attendance: Let us help you publicize your upcoming events!

Public Community Events

When it comes to event planning, low attendance can be one of the worst feelings.  Even if your event is free, poor publicity can lead to an absence of attendees and disheartened spirits. Fortunately there are plenty of outlets available for making your event known. Social media has made it possible to spread information instantly to large specific groups of people, and empower them to share your event. If you book through us, our event software allows for easy event sharing by consolidating the details of your event in an easy one click Facebook integrated post.

If you have an upcoming public event in the Northwest, we would be happy to host information about your event here on our blog. It doesn’t matter if we didn’t plan your event or if you haven’t rented items from us, we support community interaction in the support of community health and growth. If the opportunity to share your event here interests you, please email us at [email protected] to get in touch with our blogging team.  For other tips on boosting event attendance, check out this post entitled ‘Show Up!

Happy Planning!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus

Giant Monster Tricycles: Rental item of the week

Giant Adult Tricycle Rental

Welcome to Rental item of the week, where every Thursday Bouncer Rental NW highlights pros and cons of a different rental item. We provide an in-depth review and suggestions on how to incorporate the rental into your next event. Our goal is to inspire event planners to be creatively bold and move outside the normal event scope. 

Monster Tricycles sound like they are out of the latest dreamscape novel by Dr. Seuss. Don’t be deceived, they are a very real, incredibly unique rental item that will be remembered by guests at your event. A set of giant tricycles at your event is as much fun for the onlookers as it is the participants. On numerous occasions, we have watched as full grown adults indulge in their childhood tendencies. Rockin’ 10-inch rims, chopper handlebars, and a bold red, blue, or pink powder coat, these big wheelers turn heads.  So why is it that a toddler toy can influence a professional to drop their briefcase and pick up a helmet? We’d like to think that an exciting event provides the perfect opportunity for appropriately lowered inhibitions, and items like these adult tricycles end up being the perfect catalyst for said social interactions.

Helmets are provided when renting Monster tricycles and we definitely advocate for using them. Unless traveling down a steep hill, the tricycles can’t gain too much speed, but we advise caution and safety above all else. Additionally, even though the tricycles are made of metal, nothing is indestructible. Always be respectful of rental equipment and know the limits of the item so it doesn’t become damaged through extreme use. You wouldn’t want to prevent the next party from having a great time.

So you’ve been provided with an incredibly simple yet effective piece of entertainment; how do you integrate it with your event schedule. Where does it fit into the grand theme of the evening? These are the questions we want to help you answer in Rental item of the week.

Wedding Entrances (or exits?)

Here comes the bride… on a tricycle! Using a giant tricycle on your wedding day is certainly not traditional, but brides (and grooms!) everywhere are looking for ways to add flare and a touch of spunk into their nuptials. Think about your wedding day. As the crowd goes quiet and the music starts, everyone’s heads turn towards the back of the room. The double doors at the end of the aisle open and a the groom comes shooting down the aisle on a bright red three wheeled devil. not far behind him, the groomsmen rollerblade down the aisle hand in hand with roller-skating, dress adorned bridesmaids. The music shifts slightly and everyone stands up. Slowly and methodically, the bride rolls in on a pink monster trike. And in a mere moment, a wedding entrance never to be forgotten by guests was created thanks in part to the addition of a simple tricycle.

If your wedding ceremony is reserved for more traditional practices, consider the option of riding in to the ceremony or out to your honeymoon. The bride pedaling furiously and the groom standing shotgun on the back step. Careful of the dress train!

Races and Relays

Probably the most common application of Monster Trikes is at corporate events and picnics. The tricycles work equally well indoors and outdoors, so event time of year is irrelevant as long as you have ample space to ride around in.  Introducing competition into an event is a great way to get people involved that normally would not participate in the festivities. You can further participation even further by incentivizing the competition with awesome prizes. To step up the game, create a much larger relay race or multiple stage event with monster trikes representing one piece of the challenge. Create multiple challenge stations around a field and require contestants to trike between stations while balancing a spoon on their nose. The goofier the challenges, the better.

Entertainment Props

Using rental items to improve and alter the nights existing activities requires an imagination and dedication to the event’s success. If you have performers attending the event, let them use the Monster Tricycle to roll around and interact with guests. The walk-around Magician might be able to get a few more tricks in if he gets between people quicker. The photographer could capture amazing shots of event-goers smiling and laughing because he looks ridiculous on his tyke toy when approaching groups for snapshots. Have you ever seen someone juggle five knives while popping a wheelie on a big wheel. (Ok, I admit that last one might be a little extreme). If you have a youth group event with skits during the evening, include the wheeled fun on the evening theatricals to command the attention of the easily distracted youth.

Hopefully this first Rental item of the week sparks your creative fuse when planning your upcoming event. Let us know about all of the great ideas you come up with for incorporating unique rentals into your events. Happy Wheeling!

Facebooktwittergoogle_plus