corporate event tent with decor for event theme

10 Awesome Corporate Event Themes that Draw a Crowd

The best company events start with a corporate event theme that dictates every detail and ultimately boosts attendance.

Wine/Beer Tasting

Local flavors and tastes are all the fair. For an adults-only event, invite your guests to sample local craft beers and wines (along with great company and cuisine). If alcohol isn’t on the menu, host a seasonal event with treats from local vendors (i.e. farms, restaurants, etc.)  

Throwback Theme

If the corporate event is an anniversary celebration, take guests back in time with a throwback corporate event. Set the stage for a night back in time with all the details—large and small—from the milestone decade. Complete the event theme with a presentation on the big screen that celebrates every accomplishment that makes this over-the-top event possible.

Casino Night

Guests enjoy the gamble of the ultimate casino night. This is the perfect theme for a networking event that leaves guests mingling and enjoying every detail. For a truly interactive and mobile experience, intermix the entertainment, drink, and food stations or separate both areas to provide endless opportunities for networking.

Charitable Community Event

These corporate events are popular among employees and corporate guests. Companies can host a collection of specific items for a local charity or gather employees for a specific endeavor (i.e. painting, reading to kids, etc.) The charitable component can also be incorporated into a corporate event, such as asking guests to bring perishable foods or books for a charity collection. Either way, guest comfort should be considered during event planning with a tent (to accommodate for the weather) and food service.

Ultimate Barbeque

A corporate barbeque can be a completely casual experience or a high-end tasting event. For a more casual flair, host a huge grill that leaves guests in awe and anticipating the experience that is to come. Surpass their expectations with activities, décor, and all the touches of the ultimate corporate event.

Night Under the Stars

This whimsical corporate event theme is deserving of every detail that completes the atmosphere. From the lighting to the dance floor, every detail should be checked off the list. There are many possibilities that come with this theme: dance floor, string lighting, table décor, projection screen, complete menu.

Sports Night

A sports-themed corporate event appeals to the most loyal and casual sports fans. This corporate event idea can be a casual viewing party with a projection screen and the best sports-themed snacks (i.e. popcorn, slushies, etc.) For a larger crowd, rent out a local sports venue or put up a tent adjacent to an outdoor sports field for the ultimate sports party. With the right combination of food and sports-themed activities, this corporate event idea is sure to be a hit with guests.

Carnival

A carnival-themed event should be an all-encompassing experience under the big top (only the best tent is suitable for this description). This atmosphere can be created with the tent, décor, and entertainment that guests expect of a day at the carnival.

Night at the Movies/Theater

The best part of this corporate event theme is the versatility. A night at the movies theme can translate into an upscale event with grand theater décor or a less formal occasion with details from a favorite movie. The chosen theme dictates every detail: the type of tent, chairs, tables, layout, menu, and décor. (Contact event professionals to help select the right rentals for the theme.)

Trip Around the World

This event theme should feel exactly like the name suggests. An international theme should take guests through the best tastes, décor, and entertainment from a few select corners of the globe. This can be accomplished in a unique venue, such as a museum, or with a tent. For a more focused event theme, choose a country relevant to guests’ interests and incorporate the details that make that area unique.

clear party rental tent at event

10 Over-the-Top Chicago Party Rentals

Event rentals can turn a ho-hum party into a much-anticipated and well-attended occasion. The best party rentals are the details that make the biggest impact on guests and fit with the overall event theme. Think beyond tables and chairs, these rental ideas bring out the “wows!” and “that’s awesome!”

large grill for parties

HUGE Grill

Massive grills (or a series of big grills placed end-to-end) are more than a way to make the best event meal guests have ever had. These large grills let guests know that the hosts are serious about serving the best meal ever. At a corporate event, this is a fun opportunity to let managers switch roles and serve their departments. A huge grill at any other gathering makes a serious impression and guests and builds up anticipation for the meal.

Projection Screens

A projection screen is a great addition to any party, and a great way to entertain guests. A projection screen is the perfect big screen for a presentation that visualizes the accomplishments of a company or corporate team. At a birthday part, it can be the source of many giggles as those embarrassing pictures flash across the screen. A big screen can also be the base of hosting the perfect late night viewing party.

portable bar with white skirting

Portable Bar

Portable bars are a great way to keep guests mingling and moving throughout the event venue. Logistically, portable bars give guests another option and prevents long lines. For a creative twist, offer special drink mixes at each portable bar. For a good event flow, use signs to let guests know what drinks are available at different bars.

cotton candy machine

Cotton Candy Machine

Cotton candy machines draw a crowd and coordinate perfectly with a summer party theme. This summer treat is a perfect part of a circus, country fair, or picnic event theme—and just one of many summer treat party rentals. (For a complete list, contact a party planning company.)

popcorn machine party rental

Popcorn Maker

The only thing better than popcorn is fresh-made popcorn at an event. A popcorn maker is a popular party rental that can double as a party treat and favor. A bag of popcorn is the perfect way to show appreciation to guests as they leave.

slushie maker

Slushie Maker

A slushie maker is a popular party rental because guests of all ages love these cool drinks. Especially popular at hot summer parties, slushies (or the adult-favorite margarita machine) can be served from portable bars or as a self-service option. Slushies are an integral part of a summer picnic or country fair theme.

chill station at chicago outdoor wedding

Chill Tables and Tubs

Chill tables add style and function to an event, keeping drinks cool and looking great. For a more rustic feel, chill tubs are a fun and fashionable way to make drinks easily accessible for guests.

event with uplighting

Lighting

Event lighting can be functional and beautiful, adding color or ambiance to large and small events. The right lighting can add to the atmosphere and go a long way toward establishing a theme. There are numerous options for stylish lighting, such as lamp posts, uplighting, lanterns, globe lights, chandeliers, and gel splashes (for color).

checkered linen party rental for carnival party theme

Tent

Tents are one of the most versatile party rentals that can set the stage for any event. Modern tents are clear or white, with clear sidewalls (or no sidewalls), entryways, and even tent climate control. The possibilities are endless—and so are the benefits when the weather is less than ideal.

air conditioned wedding tent

Heating & Air Conditioning

Tent climate control may be invisible—and not always the most stylish—part of an event, but it’s a welcome party rental immediately noticed by guests (especially on hot or cold Chicago days). The hot or cool air can feel like a godsend to guests, making a big first impression on them the moment they step into the tent.

How to Plan an Outdoor Wedding Ceremony

wedding ceremony with white chairs and gazeboThere are almost as many outdoor wedding ceremony ideas as there are stars in the sky. After all, that’s one of the reasons couples enjoy planning an outdoor wedding ceremony; every wedding ceremony detail, from the altar to the chairs, can be coordinated into an outdoor wedding that feels personal.

Tour wedding ceremony site

Planning an outdoor wedding starts with the biggest detail, choosing the perfect wedding ceremony site that fits the couple’s tastes. The options for outdoor wedding ceremony sites are endless (especially in the Chicagoland area) and can be as easy as picturing the wedding in a backyard, beach, or favorite park. For an incredibly unique feel, couples can also choose a sports field, rooftop deck, or an outdoor theater.

Couples should discuss their preference for an outdoor venue and start compiling a list of ceremony sites. Choosing an outdoor wedding venue does come with a note of caution; while it can be fun to browse through online photos, never book an outside wedding site without an in-person tour.

Ask questions

Before scheduling a tour with an outdoor wedding venue, ask the venue questions to narrow down the list to the right one. Ask every wedding venue these questions:

  • Is the venue available on the date? (Or ask the venue for a list of dates it is available.)
  • What is the fee for using the ceremony site? What amount of time is covered by the fee? Are there any additional fees that are part of the venue cost?
  • How much space is available for the ceremony? Is there a maximum amount of guests that can be at the venue?
  • Is there an indoor venue that can be used for the reception? If not, can a tent be installed at the venue? Are there any restrictions on the tent? Is a permit needed for the tent?
  • Are there any volume limitations or curfews that need to be followed?
  • Will there be other events at the venue during the wedding?
  • Does the venue carry liability insurance? (This can be important in case a guest is injured.)
  • What is the cancellation policy?
  • Is there a list of required vendors that need couples need to use?
  • What is the venue alcohol policy?
  • Is there parking at or near the ceremony site?
  • Is the wedding venue handicap accessible?
  • Are there any inns, hotels, or cabins nearby where guests can stay?

In addition to asking questions, couples should always review the venue contract before signing on the dotted line. Once the outdoor venue is confirmed, it’s time to start coordinating the details that make every outdoor wedding unique.

Make a Plan B

white paper lanterns in wedding tent with neutral wedding decorEven if the weather forecast is beautiful, ALWAYS have a plan B in case of unpredictable weather. If the venue has a facility, make “just in case” plans to move the wedding ceremony (and reception, if applicable) to the alternate site. For outdoor wedding venues without an indoor option, consider booking a tent to protect guests from the rain and sun. If the wedding date is in late summer, it may make sense to rent a tent for protection from the sun. For venues with spectacular views, don’t feel that a tent has to interfere with the picturesque setting. Some tents are completely clear or have sidewalls that allow everyone to take in the breath-taking views.

Turn the outdoor wedding vision into reality

wedding ceremony site chicago ilThe wedding ceremony site is the foundation for all the other details. Now is the time to decide between having the guests stand or sit, what types of chairs/seating (i.e. natural-colored, dark, vintage couches, etc.), details for the altar, whether cover is wanted/needed, and whether to add décor and lighting. Couples can also add an entrance that sets the stage for what is to come. (Use this outdoor wedding rental checklist to ensure that not one detail is overlooked.)

The exact details differ for every couple. For a hot summer wedding, some couples add chill stations with cool beverages or fans to the ceremony tent. If the ceremony is more of an open-air setting, floral décor can add a sophisticated and elegant feel to the setting. An evening wedding isn’t complete without the right lighting that sets the stage for a one-of-a-kind wedding reception. (Don’t hesitate to ask the professionals for addition outside wedding ceremony ideas.)

20 Stunning Outdoor Wedding Tent Decoration Ideas that Wow

From the wedding venue to the lighting, there are so many details of an outdoor wedding that a couple can control. Unfortunately, no one can plan the perfect wedding weather (no matter what the date!), making a wedding tent rental a ‘must’ of every outdoor wedding.

A wedding tent can be more than just weather protection. It’s an opportunity! This is every couple’s chance to express themselves and create a beautiful wedding atmosphere. There are a million different tent decoration ideas that couples could use. These wedding tent decoration ideas are just a short list of ideas that inspire a gorgeous, personalized wedding atmosphere. (Ask an expert for more wedding tent decoration ideas.)

Before going through the list and planning a memorable outdoor wedding, couples shouldn’t forget about those “boring” and important aspects of a wedding tent rental. Every couple should ask their wedding venue if a wedding tent is allowed, where it is allowed, and if there are any restrictions or permits that need to be secured. (Make sure these details are communicated to the tent rental company or that a connection is made between the venue and rental company.) Once all of those details are taken care of, it’s time to start envisioning all those wedding tent decorations coordinated into a stunning wedding day.

Create a stunning first impression with a fantastic entrance

wedding tent entrance idea with green and white drapes

Add more drama with a beautiful high peak tent

high peak wedding tent

Make a clear impression on guests by bringing the outdoors in

Combine a clear tent with the right lighting and venue for an awesome atmosphere

Bring a natural and organic feel with lots of greenery

tent wedding with natural decor

Drape on the drama

tent wedding with chandeliers and string lights

Add color for a whimsical flair

wedding tent with paper lanterns

Or choose a white-on-white neutral tone with a pop of color

white paper lanterns in wedding tent with neutral wedding decor

Saturate a tent with color and texture

wedding tent with elegant table linens and floral centerpieces

Create the feel of a night sky

Dress up your wedding tent with elegant linens

tent with elegant linens and chandeliers

Add a one-of-a-kind floor for an over-the-top feel

black and white floor in wedding tent

Use a rustic table for a natural, rustic, or vintage affair

Or let them enjoy mingling with comfortable (and fashionable) seating

 

seating arrangement in wedding tent

Make your head table notable

head table in wedding tent

Take a fresh approach to wedding centerpieces

wedding tent with lemon centerpieces

Use formal decor colors to make the evening a black tie affair

tent with dramatic decor

Or use a dark flooring for contrast

tent with high floral centerpieces

Or choose more neutral tones for wedding tables with a formal feel

wedding tent decor

Select a muted color decor with a bright centerpiece for a great first impression

wedding tent

 

 

 

 

Hot Tips for Cool Summer Weddings

Just because a couple chooses a summer wedding date doesn’t mean it has to be a sizzler (for you and your guests!) It’s true. Some Chicago days can be real scorchers, but couples shouldn’t have to scramble for ways to cool down their summer wedding.

It’s a common concern for couples and their guests—and for good reason. Brides don’t want to worry about sweating their make-up off, grooms don’t want to worry about melting in their suit coats, and guests don’t want to their fancy wedding frocks to wilt. Instead, use these ideas for cooling down those hot summer weddings without putting a damper on wedding fun.fans in wedding tent at hot summer wedding

Use fans—-lots and lots of fans.

Air circulation can fell like a godsend on a hot summer day (especially when the Chicago weather is incredibly muggy). Fans are a logical addition to a summer wedding rental checklist, both for the ceremony and reception. During set-up, make sure fans are placed in areas for maximum relief that doesn’t ruin those beautiful wedding snapshots.

chill station at chicago outdoor wedding

Offer relief stations for a quick cool down.

Don’t make guests search for relief from the sun. Make the cool-down easy for guests. Couples can (stylishly) add covered tables to their summer wedding rental checklist, and pack it with sunscreen, tissues, and bug spray. For a more casual summer wedding, consider adding flip flops or a chill station filled with cold water bottles. At a more formal affair, rent stainless steel tubs for drink bottles or stylish beverage coolers filled with cold water and delicious fruit slices.

cool evening wedding

Schedule an early evening wedding.

The middle of the day is usually the hottest; couples may want to plan accordingly. An early evening wedding ceremony may offer relief from the heat, as long as there is still time for pictures and a cocktail hour. If an early evening wedding ceremony won’t work, consider renting a tent for the ceremony or locating a tent nearby for quick relief from the sun.

air conditioned wedding tent

Consider air conditioning the wedding reception tent.

A portable air conditioner can feel like a real godsend to couples and guests, especially when the weather is hot and muggy. Portable air conditioners are connected to a thermostat, ensuring that everyone is comfortable. If couples are concerned about the look of an unsightly air conditioners, the units can be positioned away from guest entrances and networking areas. Tents can also be rented with clear sidewalls that can seal in the cool air, keep bugs away, and still give guests a clear view of the outdoors.

drink station at outdoor wedding

Serve cool drinks (especially near the dance floor).

Signature wedding cocktails are a wedding trend that couples love and guests appreciate on the hottest days. Position drink stations and portable bars strategically so guests can easily access drinks when they are overheated. To keep guests on that rented dance floor, plan a layout that ensures drink stations and portable bars are near guests on the dance floor.

25+ Chicago Wedding Picnic Rental Ideas

A wedding picnic can be just the ticket for couples who want an informal and entertaining special day. Planning a picnic wedding starts with choosing the right location (such as one of our beautiful Chicago parks or your favorite backyard) and progresses to those logistical details that make the day a memorable occasion for everyone involved.

There are a few tips that go with planning a picnic wedding (especially with unpredictable Midwestern weather). For the best picnic wedding, use these wedding picnic planning tips:

  • Discuss whether you want your wedding picnic to be a large event or a small, more intimate wedding picnic. This decision can help as you decide on the tent size and number of wedding rental items needed, such as the number of chairs and tables.
  • To make sure you get the wedding picnic rental items you need, plan for your wedding day as far in advance as possible. Contact a rental company with a list of items. Don’t hesitate to ask for ideas for other items that can complete the event.
  • If using an outdoor wedding venue, always ask about logistical ideas. Is there a volume limitation or curfew? These details can put a damper on your desire for an epic wedding dance. Is there room for a large tent? Can the tent be staked down? Is a permit needed? To avoid any penalties, ask about the regulations that could add stress to your wedding planning.
  • Always have a plan B when planning an outdoor wedding. The weather can be unpredictable in Chicago, and an indoor venue or tent can be invaluable if the weather is hot or rainy. In the same way, consider adding sidewalls to a tent or climate control.
  • If the wedding ceremony and reception is in the same location, plan for additional food items and entertainment to keep guests entertained during photos and the cocktail hour. Guests can appreciate wedding entertainers and yard games that reinforce the wedding atmosphere while waiting for the wedding pleasantries to end.
  • To avoid duplication (or missing rental items), always confer with other vendors, such as your caterer, to find out what items are included in your contract.

Then, use this list of wedding picnic items (and this outdoor wedding checklist) to order the items that make your vision of a wedding picnic come alive.

  1. Ceremony chairs
  2. Tents
  3. Sidewalls
  4. Dance floor
  5. Food service tables (such as buffet tables)
  6. Table linens
  7. Heat or AC
  8. Lighting (event or atmosphere-see options for tent lighting here)
  9. Picnic table cloths
  10. Picnic tables
  11. Coffee service
  12. Chafing dishes
  13. Insulated coolers
  14. Portable bars
  15. Drink tubs
  16. Chill tables
  17. Chill tubs
  18. Industrial grills
  19. Centerpieces
  20. Garbage cans (with covers)
  21. Microphone
  22. Projection Screens
  23. Sound System
  24. Kids tables
  25. Kids chairs
  26. Stage

Your Complete Chicago Outdoor Wedding Rental Checklist

Jen Niedospial and Jake Fuller Wedding Photos, Mandatory Copyright to Glen Abog
6027 N . Drake Ave., Chicago, IL 60659, www.glenabog.com

An outdoor or backyard wedding is a beautiful idea with a long wedding rental checklist. In addition to the “normal” tasks on an indoor wedding planning checklist, an outdoor wedding requires quite a few wedding rental items. The tent (for when our Chicago weather gets too hot, cold, or rainy), the chairs, the tables…all these big outdoor rentals are part of a wonderful wedding atmosphere—PLUS some smaller items (like table linens and cooling) that shouldn’t be overlooked.

This checklist of outdoor wedding rental items can get couples started with the things needed for their special day. (Some caterers may provide some of these items as part of their services. Ask them for information on items included in the catering package.) In addition to items, couples need to consider these important parts of an outdoor wedding:

  • Permits. Some venues or areas require permits for hosting events, putting up structures (like tents), and even using propane tanks. Even backyard weddings may require some paperwork. An experienced party rental company should be able to answer questions about permits, especially at common outdoor wedding sites in Chicagoland.
  • Electricity/utilities. Many of the elements of an outdoor wedding need a power source. Some items may require more heavy-duty connections; discuss power requirements with the wedding venue and party rental company to keep the lights on and the music going.
  • Volume limitations or regulations. In some areas, volume limitations, regulations, and curfews are in effect. Ask Chicago wedding venues about any volume limitations or curfews during the venue tour. For a backyard wedding, contact local municipal offices for specific information.
  • Staffing and vendors. For a smooth wedding planning experience, choose wedding vendors (i.e. photographers, musicians, caterers, wedding rental companies, etc.) carefully. Prepare a list of questions to ask that ensures they are reputable and professional. This can include questions about their experience, availability, cost, and contract fine print. To avoid an endless search and multiple contracts, contact an experienced Chicago outdoor wedding rental companies that can provide as many items from the wedding rental item checklist as possible.

Wedding Ceremony

___ Signs (to guide guests, if needed)

___ Chairs

___ Ceremony stand or stage (if needed)

___ Topiaries/flowers (if desired)

___ Microphone & sound system (if needed)

___ Lights (exterior & interior, if needed)

___ Tent (for blocking sun or in case of inclement weather)

___ Tent sidewalls (if needed during inclement weather) & climate control (heating, cooling, fans, etc.)

___ Restrooms (for full event, if other facilities are not available)

___ Lounge furniture (if needed)

___ Tables (round, banquet, umbrella, or other specialty tables, if desired)

___ Chairs (if desired)

Cocktail Hour (many of these items should be rented for cocktail hour, dinner & reception)

___ Tent (with entrance and sidewalls, optional)

___ Lighting (exterior & interior)

___ Tent climate control (heating, cooling, fans, etc.)

___ Signs (to guide guests, if needed)

___ Guest book table

___ Stools

___ Cocktail tables

___ Linens (i.e. spandex linens, layering, etc.)

___ Portable bars

___ Barware

___ Table skirt (for coffee table, cake table, portable bars, etc.)

___ Coffee table

___ Centerpieces

___ Napkins

___ Tables (round, banquet, umbrella, or other specialty tables, if desired)

___ Tableware (if needed)

___ Glassware (if needed)

___ Kegerators (or kegerator bars)

___ Chill and fill stations/tubs for chilling drinks

___ Lounge furniture

___ Cake/dessert table

___ Screens & microphone (for announcements)

___ Sound system (if needed for cocktail hour musicians)

Wedding Dinner & Reception

___ Tent (additional, for caterer prep or specifically for dinner and reception)

___ Lighting (interior & exterior)

___ Climate Control (heating, cooling, fans)

___ Signs (to guide guests, if needed)

___ Guest book table

___ Stools

___ Cocktail tables

___ Linens (i.e. spandex linens, layering, etc.)

___ Portable bars

___ Barware

___ Table skirt (for coffee table, cake table, portable bars, etc.)

___ Coffee table

___ Centerpieces (for head table, guest tables, coffee table, etc.)

___ Napkins

___ Tables (round, banquet, umbrella, or other specialty tables)

___ Chairs

___ Linens (table cloths, runners, sash, etc.)

___ Centerpieces (for tables & bars)

___ Tableware

___ Glassware

___ Kegerators (or kegerator bars)

___ Chill and fill stations/tubs for chilling drinks

___ Cake/dessert table

___ Screens & microphone

___ Buffet stations (l-shaped, x-shaped, u-shaped)

___ Food service equipment

___ Stage

___ Stage lighting

___ Sound system

___ Lounge furniture

Chicago Heated Tent Rental: ‘Musts’ of an Awesome Party Tent

It may be cold outside, but the breezy Chicago temps can’t ice your vision of an awesome outdoor event. Heated party tents can make any event comfortable and enjoyable, bringing extra space to a restaurant March Madness party or fashionable cover to any event planned during questionable weather. (In Chicago, that questionable weather can happen any time of year!)

Think of a heated party tent as an extra layer of insurance. A heated tent ensures that the event can go on—even when it’s cold or rainy. It can also go on comfortably (no matter what the weather), if the following considerations are factored in during event planning.

Space

Guests should expect to feel cozy in a heated tent without feeling crowded. The first step of a heated tent rental is to determine what size of tent is needed and the location of the event. Tent rental companies need an estimated guest count to connect the planner with the right-sized tent.

The location of the event tent does need to be more exact than the guest count. Before renting, determine the size of the area for the tent, if there is space around the tent for stakes, and whether the surface is hard or suitable for stakes. Proper installation hinges on proper support (with or without stakes). This criterion also plays a part in the total cost of the heated tent rental. Once both criteria are set, contact a local Chicago tent rental company for a quote.

Heat & Climate Control

A heated tent is a must for any outdoor event, especially on cool Chicago nights. Climate control is a must for guest comfort. In addition to heaters, rent a heated tent with a climate control thermostat. The thermostat keeps the tent (and guests) at a comfortable temperature.

Crowded tents also tent to be incredibly hot. If planning an event where a crowd is expected, consider adding fans to the event rental list. Free-standing or mounted fans can properly circulate air, which ensures that guests stay longer and enjoy the comfortable atmosphere.

Sidewalls

heated tent sidewall with cathedral windowsToday, event organizers have more options for sidewalls than ever before. Tent sidewalls may be essential for keeping a heated tent comfortable, but they can also be a detail that contributes to the overall event atmosphere. Clear and windowed sidewalls can give an event an indoor-outdoor feel, even when the temps are cool. The type of sidewall can also give the event a casual or formal feel. To determine the best sidewalls for the event, ask the professionals to recommend the best sidewalls appropriate for the occasion.

Chicago Restaurants: 5 Tips for a BIGGER March Madness Party

'friends toasting at March Madness party at restaurantIt’s time to celebrate those March Madness wins and grieve those big losses. As a restaurant manager, you can be along for the ride—and the big dance—if you don’t drop the ball planning this year’s March Madness event.

Don’t wait until the first jump ball

The first step is to not to wait until Selection Day to start prepping and promoting your restaurant March Madness party. Plan a promotional schedule that starts weeks before Selection Day. Strategically place décor and signs that announce March Madness events and specials, such as behind the bar and by the door for customers that leave and enter. Create a buzz by posting big announcements, images, and dates on social media that draw a crowd.

Choose the right promos

The best, slam-dunk March Madness restaurant promotions are baskeball-themed and carefully chosen for the target audience. Put simply, restaurants need to offer promotions that matter to existing and new customers, such as discounts when the local favorites win or giveaways for upsets. Consider running specials (i.e. 4.40 wings for the Final Four, 16 deals to celebrate the Sweet Sixteen, rewards for successful brackets) the coordinate with the local March Madness buzz (or put your own spin on one of these March Madness promotion ideas).

Brew up a winner

According to WalletHub, a surplus 1.3 million barrels of beer is produced every March (over other months of the year). The takeaway for restaurants is to include beer into your March Madness event and promotion strategy. Consider running happy hour specials before and after games to draw customers in and extend the party. Ask social media followers to name the kind of beer that fits the game they’re buzzing about. Select brews that fit certain events, or put your own twist on a favorite brew.

Brag about your big screens

A March Madness party isn’t complete without big screens so customers can catch all those big March Madness plays. Buy or rent big screens for the occasion, and don’t hesitate to show off all those televisions and projector screens online. Share images and videos of the screens and the party space as you put it together; customers love to see inside scoops and shots of what’s to come.

Put together the ultimate party space

If you have space for the ultimate March Madness restaurant event, use it. If you don’t, use tents (heated so your customers are warm during our Chicago winters) to expand the space and draw customers in. Position your tents strategically. A tent in front of a restaurant can be a draw for sidewalk traffic. A well-promoted tent behind a restaurant can be a huge addition that can make your March Madness event an overtime win.

Make Your March Madness Restaurant Party a Slam Dunk

march madness party at chicago restaurantMarch Madness celebrations are the BEST when the home team is winning and everyone’s brackets (and squares) aren’t a bust. While restaurant owners and managers can’t control the March Madness games, there are ways to ensure your March Madness party feels like an overtime victory (to you and your guests).

Comfortable Guests

You want your guests complaining about the refs’ calls, not how cramped or cold your party is. While the Windy City is a great location for a March Madness party, the weather can be terrible. This can be a blessing and a curse; because the weather isn’t great, it can be great for a party turnout. The curse is that the temperatures can dip way below comfortable. Accommodating an extra-large turnout—and the weather—can be easily solved with a tent. A tent with sidewalls and an excellent heating system can accommodate both needs, without making guests feel uncomfortable in a cramped space. (The tent can also be installed so guests don’t even notice the transition from restaurant to tent.)

Good Bar

A good bar is a must for any restaurant or sports bar celebrating one of the biggest sports events of the year. Many bars are an over-the-top March Madness party feature that every guest appreciates (especially when the place is packed!) Meet their expectations by renting an additional bar for your March Madness event (and strategically position it for maximum use). Discuss your options for a second bar with event professionals; a keg bar can be an easy way to serve the most popular brews so your guests don’t have to wait for all those other drink orders. 

Slam Dunk Menu

Restaurant menus don’t have to be cheesy, but they do have to be delicious and suitable for the occasion. The menu can be customized specifically for March Madness or those favorites that suit the event; either way, be sure to include the menu items that draw a crowd into marketing efforts. If your event is an all-inclusive, pay-at-the-door, rent food service dishes to keep the food hot—and the crowd ready for the next game.

Additional Seating

The best March Madness games keep spectators on the edge of their seat (or stool). Don’t be one of those restaurants that doesn’t give them a place to sit. Rent additional seating and tables to accommodate a crowd. For a sports bar atmosphere, rent high boy tables and stools. More formal parties should rent tables and seats for a sit-down (when the games not getting tight) feel.