We were approached by Murraywood Construction, a leader in building civil engineering groundwork projects of all sizes and turning over in excess of £24M per year, to organise an event to celebrate their 20th anniversary in business. With their clients being situated all over the UK, they wanted to thank them for their continued support by bringing them all together for a wine and dine evening. Not only that, but they also wanted to take this opportunity to raise money for an incredible charity – St Rocco’s Hospice in Warrington, a registered charity who support people with life-limiting illnesses, making their everyday count.
We love creating unique, showstopping, memorable experiences for our clients, and overcoming the challenges each event brings. The venue and suite chosen by the client only had one bar area, and we knew it was extremely important to the client that we ensured everyone was able to access refreshments throughout the evening in a timely fashion. As the event was partly to raise money for charity, we had to incorporate ways for people to be able to donate, as well as manage the donations and collections. As this was going to be a business, networking event, we had to ensure that there was enough variety of entertainment, activities and icebreakers that will get people talking and interacting with each other. We have over 15 years’ experience in event planning and providing unique, outside-the-box, live entertainment, props, and décor to events, so we knew that despite these challenges, we could create a sophisticated, elegant, entertaining affair.
In order to overcome any issues on the day of the event, and to make sure we brought our client’s vision to life, we arranged several site visits to the venue, the Midland Hotel in Manchester, and meetings with our client, which resulted in creating mood boards with clear pictures of venue décor, colour schemes, entertainment options and site layouts, so that we maintained consistency throughout the event planning process. With the brief in mind, we decided to create a fantastic Casino Themed night with Roulette, Wheel of Fortune & Blackjack tables. We added a 4 metre LED Cocktail Bar with a menu of 8 bespoke Cocktails to keep the refreshments flowing, in addition to a stocked fridge in another area, containing bottled beers, ciders and soft drinks that guests could help themselves to throughout the evening.
Bringing the Casino theme to life, guests were greeted on arrival and offered a choice of Prosecco, Kia Royale, and bottled beers by glamourous Showgirls. They were then offered a photograph with the Showgirls by a talented photographer before heading into Auden Way, where they walked through a beautifully decorated walkway filled with enlarged photographs of projects Murraywood had worked on over the last 20 years – this alone was a great talking point between guests.
Moving on to the Alex Foyer where a fantastic Photo Booth with fancy dress and props was situated for guests to create even more wonderful memories. Speaking of capturing memories, guests were delighted with an incredibly skilful caricaturist, who took pride in creating scarily accurate cartoon portraits of the guests as they laughed and tried to keep a straight face whilst holding their best pose. We cannot forget a certain magician who made a special appearance on the night – the mind-blowing Russell Brown, who is one of the greatest magicians in the UK today, and definitely knows how to work a crowd, as well as entertain and even baffle the most skeptical of guests!
Our client wanted entertainment everywhere you turned, so in the Petersfield Suite, we had Dance Heads, a green-screen phenomenon where guests can turn themselves into Beyoncé or One Direction for the night – and take away a DVD to prove it! And sticking with the Casino theme, our staff organised personalised ‘funny money’ for guests to use in Casino tournaments, where the top 3 winners won big prizes that were donated by local businesses. Guitar Jimmy was our Busker and the live entertainment for the evening, equipped with a guitar and a harmonica, he sang soaring renditions of everything from The Beatles to Ed Sheeran, inviting guests to place requests for him to sing!
As this event is partly to raise money for charity, we organised fun personalised Lapel Pins to be handed out to each guest at registration. Each Lapel Pin had a unique number on it for when guests took part in a Charity raffle later on in the evening. Finally, what is a wine and dine evening, without the wine? We brought in a 15ft LED Cocktail Bar with three of the UK’s top Flair Bartenders who served up eight different cocktails all evening. Each bartender was trained to Competition Level in Flair Cocktail Bar Service and put on a jaw-dropping display, whilst creating some delicious drinks! This was one of the most popular acts of the evening, as the talented bartenders served over a thousand cocktails and mocktails throughout the night.
The Casino part of the evening finished at 9.30pm as we totted up the three winners of the table games just in time for the awards and charity raffle taking place at 10pm. Our event DJ then made the necessary announcements, congratulated the winners, thanked everyone for donating and introduced the Beat Street International – the ultimate corporate party band! Big Foot Events have worked with Beat Street International for several years now, and this incredible 7-piece live band featuring male and female lead vocalists, a Sax and Trumpet player, know no bounds when it comes to entertaining! With belting hits and an energetic live energy never seen before, this live band had the dance floor full within minutes – and the Sax player even led a conga line around the room!
Speaking of the main function room, it looked truly superb, with delicately placed and beautifully presented drapes, table centrepieces, chair covers as well as up lighting and giant glittery moving heads flicking across the dance floor, not forgetting Casino tables and Casino games – the whole evening was a complete extravagant and memorable spectacle. The Big Foot Events team worked impeccably to ensure a smooth running event from start to finish.
Clients and guests alike had a marvellous time, although there might have been some sore heads the next morning as the cocktails were too delicious to resist!