The Pacific Northwest is special. Anyone that embraces life in this verdant corner of the country will tell you: Yep, there’s a magic to this place. Not magic in the Twilight or Twin Peaks sense (though it’s clear why those were filmed here), but magic in the quality-of-life sense. People come to the PNW for the breathtaking, craggy nature, the flow of amazing food and drink, and—lucky for us—the thriving industry. So when planning your next marketing event, we welcome you to take advantage of our bounty. Here are a few things that you can look forward to.
Diverse (and massive) industries
When it comes to industry, the Pacific Northwest is most commonly known for science and tech, and for good reason as it dominates the industrial landscape with giants like Microsoft, Amazon, and Intel standing sentinel. But this region of seaport cities originally built its economy on logging, mining, and farming. So in addition to the hyper-production of tech hardware out of the Silicon Forest, Oregon offers thriving sectors in high manufacturing and wood agriculture, while Washington boasts heavy stakes in healthcare and aerospace (we’re looking at you, Boeing).
Activities for all tastes
Take a look at the typical PNW lifestyle and you can see how companies like Nike, Columbia Sportswear, and REI were founded here. The populous stretch of land between the Cascade Range and the Pacific Ocean—home to the major metropolises of Portland, Vancouver, and Seattle—is a natural wonderland. With easy access to mountains, rivers, and beaches, most locals have a particular outdoor passion (even in the rain). There are the hot spots to visit for a client outing or retreat, as well as trail walks and hot springs for more low-key nature play.
Aside from outdoor activities, locals are gaga for cultural activities and sports—which offer great venues for hosting events. Offer a giveaway to the Oregon Symphony. Throw a lavish cocktail party at Chihuly Garden and Glass. Treat your clients to a suite at a Seahawks game. Get field seats for the Portland Timbers— or if you’re feeling really adventurous, take a seat with the Timber’s Army (but you need to be a member first).
Really, we could go on.
Apart from the rain (which does fall pretty consistently from October to June, sorry), our other trademark is our way. Famously caricatured in the sketch comedy series Portlandia, there is personality of place in the Pacific Northwest—not quite as extreme, but it’s notably unique. Home to the counterculture grunge music movement and (arguably) the largest independent bookstore in the world, this region is famously distinct, innovative, and a tad self righteous. But what mainly defines the Northwest personality is openness. In large part, doing business in the PNW resembles everyday life—casual, open, and adventurous.
Imbibing and indulging
If food- and drink-based client events are your thing, you’ll swoon at the range of options available in the PNW. While Seattle and Portland are the notable (and competitive) powerhouses of the region for jazzy bars and restaurants, you can find wonderful, locally infused food in the surrounding areas. As far as ‘must have’ eats, think forest and sea. Salmon, oysters, mushrooms, berries, hazelnuts, apples, all star on any menu specializing in NW fare. The influence of our neighbors across the sea has brought a wave of ramen, korean fusion, and thai street food. And don’t overlook the stick-to-your-ribs favorites like hefty sandwiches and small-batch donuts and ice cream. Many of the popular micro-chains cater, if you’re looking for creative ideas for a lunch meeting.
Then, of course, there’s drink. Wine heralds as the iconic drink of this region, with vineyards sweeping down the valley from Canada to California. Wherever you’re hosting an event, you’ll find a wine-tasting room nearby. Rent out a space for a wine hour, or hire a shuttle and take your clients on a vineyard tour. You could also go the beer and spirits route—and wouldn’t be disappointed. PNW is brimming with craft brewers and distillers, with IPA reigning as the local favorite.
With all that’s available to do, eat, drink, and trade in here in the Pacific Northwest, it’s a great region to host your next outside-of-the-box event.