life isn't average. neither are we.
Let It Grow!
Kristina Chau - Friday, November 12, 2010
Hey party peeps!

In honour of Movember, I thought I would write a post on how to throw down a mo-riffic fundraiser - and yes, there will be plenty "mo" puns throughout this.  Movember is a world-wide moustache growing charity event held in November each year to bring awareness to men's health.  Here in Canada proceeds go directly to Prostate Cancer Canada.

First off, determine what your fundraising goal is and the budget you have to help achieve this.  You don't need a large budget, however do realize that you will likely need to spend some money, in order to raise some.

Next select a date and a mo-propriate venue to host your fundraiser.  It could be just throwing a house party at your own humble abode or perhaps the local bar down the street.  Wherever you select, try and ensure that you don't spend money on the venue as this will ensure that most of the proceeds raised, go towards the cause.  If you decide to go to a venue, barter with them to donate their space - offer them in-kind marketing and promotion and have them donate part of the proceeds at the bar so they receive a tax receipt.

Utilize the Movember website as a great resource for everything mo-tastic.  There's a link to acquire your own free Movember Party Pack that includes a variety of items such as a Man and Miss of Movember sash, posters, donations boxes, pins and stickers.  All of these Movember branded items are sure to be a hit at your event.

Now it's time to get creative!  Think of various ways to raise funds besides charging an admission price.  Here are a few ideas:
  • Approach local businesses to donate prizes and host a contest with various categories i.e.  the best mo sculpture; the best use of a fake mo; the best fu manchu mo; the options are endless!
  • Have a photo booth set up with various moustache props and charge a fee for everyone to get in on the fun.
  • Get local artists to donate a piece to a Movember exhibit and host a silent auction.
  • Set up a "Pin the Mo on Burt" (Reynolds that is) game and charge a nominal fee for people to play.
  • Make it easy for guests and have a laptop or two set up on the Movember web page so guests can make online donations with their credit cards.
So men, as you are the fundraiser make sure you are actively promoting your event and connecting with your network!  If you have an iPhone, download the Movember app and post photos of your mo's progress and ensure to include a link for event tickets or donation information when sharing on Facebook or Twitter.

And ladies just because Movember is about men's health, it doesn't mean you can't join in on the celebration and fun.  Now I'm not suggesting you need to go all hippie and let your mo grow in au natural, however there are tons of mo merch out there that you can sport that are super cute.  Here are a few:

Demistache have adorable moustache necklaces for sale and $8.00 of every purchase is donated to Movember!

Mo Love

Fuzzy Ink have also partnered up with Movember and will donate $5.00 of every purchase made.  Purchase one of these cute t's to show your support!

Or if you have a booboo, make it feel better with these amazing moustache band aids.  There are four different sizes and styles included in the pack which can be purchased online at Urban Oufitters.

As you can see there are plenty of ways to get in the Movember spirit and show your support!  If you like my ideas please like this on Facebook or Tweet about it with the links below and have yourself a mo-tastic day!

For the life of the party,

Let Them Eat Cacao!
Kristina Chau - Thursday, October 28, 2010
Hey party peeps,

Happy Chocolate Day!  Yes, that's right, apparently October 28 is National Chocolate Day...well for our friends down in the States it is.  

Anyhow I figured that this is the perfect inspiration to write a blog post on chocolate events and venues in the city and how you can incorporate everyone's favourite delectable treat to create your own "not your average party"!

pic-ball.jpg (29912 bytes)Toronto Chocolate Festival - In it's 5th year, the annual Toronto Chocolate Festival is a series of events that cater to the chocoholic in you!  It started last Friday on October 22 and runs until November 7 city-wide. Check out the website for events such as The Chocolate Ball, which was held at Palais Royale; or Chocolicious: Tour de Chocolate offering a passport to the many chocolatiers and pastry shops in Toronto; or enjoy the afternoon and have Chocolate High Tea at the Windsor Arms Hotel.

MoRoCo Chocolat - Amongst the shops and restaurants in the trendy Moroco Chocolat Restaurant Torontoneighbourhood of Yorkville, you will find tucked away a chocolate lover's paradise. Entering their boutique is like entering a little piece of heaven.  The clean white display cases showcase some of the most tantalizing treats your eyes have ever laid on.

Moroco Chocolat YorkvilleAdjacent to their boutique you enter their grandiose lounge which is open for afternoon tea, weekend brunch and can also be rented for special events.  It's a perfect venue to host a shower or a unique corporate event. Surprise your guests with one of their fabulous chocolate indulgences such as the "Gimmie S'Mores Torching Table" station or the "Chocolate Velvet" sipping chocolate bar.  MoRoCo can also be hired to cater your next event. 

Attend a Chocolate Workshop - I've mentioned in previous blog posts that cooking schools and mixology classes are fun interactive event ideas but here's a delicious spin - arrange to attend a chocolate or truffle making workshop! 

Stubbe at Christie and Dupont specializes in chocolate but also offers yummy treats such as tortes, pastries and truffles handmade on-site.  Patrons can view the open-kitchen where these mouth-watering treats are created right in front of them and also sign up for one of their chocolate workshops.

Host a Chocolate Tasting Party - A Taste of Chocolate will work with you to customize a chocolate tasting at your next corporate or private party.  Your guests will learn about where chocolate comes from, how it's made, what to look for when purchasing high-quality chocolate and even the health benefits, all while tasting!

Lastly, don't forget that everyone loves chocolate so what's a more perfect favour at your shower or wedding or corporate gift?  Send your guests away with a beautifully wrapped box of gourmet chocolate or truffles and they'll be sure to remember you and your event.  Check out BlogTO's list for some of the best chocolatiers in Toronto.

As you can see, there are many ways to celebrate your occasion with chocolate.  What better excuse to indulge than an event?  ;)

For the life of the party,

T'is The Season!
Kristina Chau - Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Hi party peeps,

I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving weekend!  I love this time of year.  The leaves are changing, it’s time to make yummy soups and stews, dress in cozy scarves and boots, and of course, it’s another opportunity to celebrate with family and friends.

Even though we have less than three weeks to go before Halloween, 
it really is time to start thinking about the biggest holiday season out there!   For corporate companies this means it’s time to start thinking about hosting your own “not your average party” for your employees.  

To get your creative juices flowing, here are a few unique corporate holiday party ideas that are ideal for various group sizes and range in various budgets:

1. Party Like a Rock Star
– Everyone has rented a karaoke machine or gone to a karaoke bar, but have you ever had the chance to rock out like a real star? 
Rock The Stars offers various packages to up the entertainment value at your holiday party.  You can “Play With The Band” where guests sing along a real live band or your can host “Battle of the Airbands” where guests dress up in full gear and battle it out airband style.  These fun interactive games are sure to create a memorable event for you and your staff. 

2. Mix It Up – Cooking classes are very popular interactive activities but they’ve been done before so why not take that idea and put a twist on it.  Take your staff to a venue that puts you behind the bar and create your company’s own signature cocktail.  Venues such as Ame or The Drake Hotel not only serve amazing food, but they also offer personalized mixology classes for small groups. 

Alternatively, if you prefer relaxing and being served at the bar, take your group out to a venue such as Bar Chef on Queen Street and delight your senses by trying one of their molecular cocktails and nosh on some yummy nibbles.

3. Holiday Cheer
– Spread the holiday cheer around by selecting a charitable organization that aligns with your company’s community giving objectives and throw a great party that raises funds for them. 
Here are some examples of how to do this:

 Inspire staff to auction off their skills or special talents to their colleagues
 Engage your corporate clients in the fundraising, i.e. For every $1000 donation, an employee could dedicate a period of pro-bono work
 Host an online fundraiser using your social media networks

One example of a 
great not-for-profit organization who would be happy to assist you with putting together such an event is SKETCH.  SKETCH believes that everyone is creative but for many at-risk youths, the resources to be creative and express themselves are very hard to come by.  So, SKETCH provides the space, tools and workshops; in turn the young artists learn skills, become purpose driven and create culture. For further information on how to connect on this amazing opportunity, contact Dale Roy at 416-516-5428 (ex:34) or

4. An Afternoon to Remember – Perhaps you want an afternoon outing for the team but you still want them to have the VIP treatment.  Host an afternoon to remember by booking out the screening room at one of the newest venues in Toronto – The Thompson Hotel

The 41-seat capacity screening room allows you play whatever you film you want (a holiday classic would be perfect) and accompany this with their Champagne Break package which includes such delights as “Truffle Scented Fresh Popcorn, Cracker Jacks”, “Kobe Beef Sliders, Foie Gras, Fig Jam, Caramelized Shallots, Lavender Honey, Truffle Oil” and of course a glass of Veuve Clicquot Champagne.

I hope you've enjoyed these "not your average" ideas and please feel free sharing this post on Facebook or Twitter with the links below!  Should you wish to have this party guru help you plan your own company or private event, please fill out this contact form.

For the life of the party,

Share on Facebook

not your average party