Month: January 2014
6 Tips for Throwing a Super Bowl Party on a Budget!
It’s that time of year again! We are just days away from one of television’s most-watched events, the 48th annual Super Bowl! More than 108 million people tuned in for last year, and we can only expect that number will increase for this year’s event. The Super Bowl showdown takes place this Sunday, February 2nd between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos. Not only are the two best teams in the league facing one another, this is the first ever Super Bowl taking place in an outdoor stadium at the Meadowlands, home to the New York Giants and New York Jets.
Year after year, people gather to enjoy the game of football, those hilarious commercials, the halftime show, and of course to see which team gets the Lombardi trophy. If you’re hosting a party this year, it can be stressful to decide how much to spend on food and beverages. No need to worry! Leah Ingram, author of Suddenly Frugal, brings us 6 tips to throwing a Super Bowl party on a budget.
1. Use coupons and buy on sale. It sounds simple, but you’d be surprised at how many people don’t spend the time collecting coupons to save the most money. It will go a long way if you can save on each item you are looking to purchase.
2. Buy in bulk to save the most. Get out that Costco card and shop at a warehouse club! Any time of membership will do. Snacks and finger foods will be much cheaper if you buy them in bulk. Don’t forget about paper towels and bottled water, both are essentials to keeping a clean house and hydrated group!
3. Avoid convenience to keep costs down. If you’re adding a few healthy items to the menu, make sure to buy in large quantities. Dips can be a party favorite, so make sure to buy fruits and vegetables in bulk that can be cut for dipping. It’s a simple and easy to share dish!
4. Make your party menu with next week’s dinner in mind. Tons of planning can go into throwing a Super Bowl party, and often times we end up with more food than we can handle for one evening. Make sure your leftovers can be made into meals to feed yourself or family over the next week or so. This way you will have made the most of your party purchases!
5. Go with one-dish wonders. Think about a few bold dishes that will satisfy your guests! Chili, tacos, and macaroni and cheese are great options because you can add in a buffet for toppings where guests can dress up their dishes in any way they would like.
6. Think potluck. Ask your guests to chip in by bringing a dish! Hosting won’t seem as stressful, and you can save some extra cash. And hey, it can be fun to enjoy a variety of foods and see who came up with the most creative dish!
These useful tips can assist you in planning a party on a budget and make this Super Bowl a fun and exciting experience! What tips will you use when planning your Super Bowl Extravaganza, and who do you think will take home the Lombardi Trophy?! Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter!
ABCey’s Weekend Lineup 1.30.14 – 2.2.14
It may feel a bit more like winter this week, but that doesn’t mean San Francisco’s events are in hibernation! Take a look at some of our favorite events happening in our beloved city this weekend!
FEATURED EVENT | Southwest Chinese New Year Parade | Second and Market | 6-8pm | Ring in the year of the Horse with the largest Lunar New Year parade around! Starting at Second and Market, the parade will work its way up to San Francisco’s Chinatown where there will be a multitude of smaller events happening. We can’t wait to see the countless costumes as well as the 268’ Golden Dragon named “Gum Lung.”
1. SF Sketchfest| Multiple Locations |On Going until February 9th | Come out to San Francisco’s 13th annual sketchfest this year! It is a month long run of comedy locals and heavyweights with special shows around the city! This week we can’t wait for performances by Jon Glaser, Rashida Jones, Zack Galafanakis and many other great performers! Check out the schedule and come out for some laughs!
2. Noir City: 12th Annual Film Noir Festival | The Castro Theater |Thursday, January 30th- Sunday February 2nd | Come check out international, classic film noirs and the most popular Noir film festival around! This year, the focus is international films and with films like Hardly a Criminal, and Two Men in Manhattan they’ve called this the most expansive and ambitious program the festival has ever put on!
3. San Francisco Ballet: Giselle | War Memorial Opera House | All Weekend | The world renowned San Francisco Ballet opens 2014 with one of our favorites, Giselle. This 173 year old ballet is the story of a peasant girl with a passion for dancing. Come see the classical ballet this weekend and be taken away by the beautiful journey the story tells!
4. Lunar New Year Celebration|Asian Art Museum of San Francisco | Sunday, February 2nd | 10:30am | Come join the Asian Art Museum in celebrating the Year of the Horse with a multitude of family activities planned throughout the day! Listen to storytellers, create your own art work and even watch the famous Red Panda Acrobats! Admission is free for all ages!
5. San Francisco Giants FanFest | AT& T Park| Saturday, February 1st | 10am-3pm | Spring training is almost upon us, and we can’t wait for baseball season! Lucky for us, we don’t have to wait much longer since FanFest is this Saturday! Come watch Q&A sessions with coaches and players, walk the fields, dugouts and concourses while also potentially running into players current and former for some autographs and pictures! Admission is free for everyone!
With so many events, festivals and celebrations going on this weekend, how will you decide what makes the cut? Let us know what events you’ll be attending in the comments below, or on Facebook & Twitter!
Have You Been Missing Out On Lazy Bear?
San Francisco is one of America’s best cities for foodies as chosen by Travel + Leisure readers! With tons of eclectic restaurants in the Bay Area, it can be tricky to decide where to dine. When we heard about an underground fine dining restaurant, we had to find out more!
Lazy Bear, run by David Barzelay, serves dinner to the public about three weekends per month, typically on Friday, Saturday, and Monday. Reservations are usually closed, so the best way to snag a reservation is to get on the mailing list. With over 10,000 subscribers, you will be one of many to hear about upcoming events.
Each set of dinners is an all-new menu and no dishes are repeated. Lazy Bear is the highest-rated “New American” restaurant in all of San Francisco according to Yelp.com and has been named one of the best underground restaurants in the city.
This unique restaurant usually has 1,000+ waitlists for 120 spots in one weekend. While the public events are popular to say the very least, Lazy Bear also holds private dinners for groups. The team will craft a custom menu for every event, making each experience at Lazy Bear personalized and special.
Here at ABCey, we love to check out restaurants that stand out among others which is why we find Lazy Bear so fascinating! This underground dining experience gained its popularity from word of mouth, so go check it! Let us know what you think in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter!
Tech Tuesday: Get to Know The Nominees
We’ve been counting down the days to the Tech Crunch Crunchie Awards (13 days!) and can’t wait to see who wins Best New Start Up. We’ve done some digging and would like to introduce you to the 5 fantastic nominees in this category!
1. Anki: Making artificial intelligence accessible to everyone! The vision is to bring consumer robotics into everyday life. How exactly did they do this? By first developing an awesome artificial intelligence game called Anki Drive. This unique game learns and adapts, with the sole goal being victory. This is just the beginning of Anki, and we can’t wait to see what they do with artificial intelligence next!
2. Coinbase: Itching to invest in Bitcoins but wary of the security discrepancies that haunt the crytpocurrency? Enter Coinbase, the digital wallet that helps you manage your Bitcoins safely and securely! With 13,000 merchants using Coinbase and investors funneling over $6 million into the fledgling company, Coinbase is guaranteed to expand Bitcoin use to the average consumer.
3. Glow: Hassle free fertility tracking is the focus of the app Glow. Expanding beyond fertility, the young company is beginning to target many more aspects of women’s health and is available on Android and iOS. Women have access to daily questions, a community discussion board and a color-coded calendar that corresponds to their personal women’s health goals. We love that it is a portable, discrete app encouraging and teaching women about their bodies and health!
4. Tinder: Tinder is one of the hottest apps in the hook up culture’s circles. Working on off the time honored binary system, if two users mutually agree the other is attractive, you are able to message each other. Tinder opens the channels for any number of relationship types and is also a fun way to scope out and meet new people!
5. Whisper: Whisper is a new anonymous social media platform where you can be free to share your thoughts with the world. With endless options to customize your posts you can truly express your thoughts while getting feedback on your own. Whisper also has private messaging, which we think is a must for every social media platform!
Who is your pick for Best New Start Up? Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook & Twitter! We’ll let you know the winner after the Crunchie Awards in San Francisco on February 10th!
Startup Monday: Good Eggs
Startups, startups, startups! 2013 was booming as more and more startups hit the market! Have you checked out who is up for nomination at the 7th Annual Crunchies Awards? There are tons of great companies being recognized for their amazing work, and we would like to acknowledge one that is truly applicable to our everyday lives.
Good Eggs originated in the San Francisco Bay Area, and connects you to local farmers and foodmakers. You can shop for local and fresh groceries of your choice, and it will be delivered right to your door. As a recent newcomer to the Bay Area, I don’t always know the best places to do my grocery shopping and want farmer’s market quality food. Aside from their excellent products, great delivery, do-able pick-up hours, and fantastic service, the prices are affordable.
Here are a few of the awesome things Good Eggs has to offer:
1. Good Eggs city marketplaces support independent local farmers and foodmakers. These producers use sustainable practices and make their food with care. You can see who made your food, learn more about them, and contact them directly if you’d like.
2. Good Eggs carries food you can’t find anywhere else. Meals come from top independent chefs, you can find gluten-free anything, and baby food is made to order! This startup is able to support smaller foodmakers who can’t sell into grocery stores because their food is too fresh to live among the grocery store inventory.
3. Local food is better for everybody. The Good Eggs producers are using fair labor practices on their lands, caring for their animals, and producing food that is significantly healthier for you to eat. As more money goes towards locally-owned businesses, the more local food will become easily accessible.
4. Good Eggs Gifting is now available. Gift cards, boxes, and orders are great ways to share with friends and families. Allow your loved ones to pick out foods of their own, or send a box or care package that will be made for them!
How convenient is it to have your food delivered right to your door? It’s cheaper than the chain natural food supermarkets, and the local and fresh food is sure to be a hit! This startup provides a win-win for shoppers, local economies, and the environment.
It’s great for personal grocery shopping and shopping for a group! If your planning an event and need a few last minute items, don’t fret! You can order directly from Good Eggs and they will provide you with what you need.
Here at ABCey, we absolutely love what Good Eggs has to offer! Give it a try, and if you love it as much as we do, spread the word! Let us know what you think of Good Eggs, nominated in the Best E-Commerce Application category, in the comments section below or on Facebook & Twitter!
Friday Five: It’s All About Theme
The world of event planning is constantly changing, moving with the ebb and flow of social media, pop culture and fashion. We’ve been scoping out the blogs, the feeds and the social media sites to answer one burning question: What are the hottest themes of 2014? We’ve found a couple of our favorites, and from what we can tell -it’s going to be a fun year!
1. Bold and Bright: Don’t be afraid to go big this year. Bright colors and patterns seem to be what’s popping up everywhere! It’s such a fantastic way to set the tone of your event and welcome your guests!
2. Modern Rustic: With the welcome addition of Pinterest to the social media world, rustic crafts and themes became prevalent last year. This year, the goal is to ‘step up our game’ by maturing the rustic theme and bringing it into the modern era. Try mixing and matching rustic pieces with more modern and sleek looks to create a perfect blend of old and new.
3. Great Gatsby: The Great Gatsby is continuing its dominance from 2013 and rolling into the new year with a vengeance. Flappers, bourbon and flamboyance is what make any Gatsby party great. We love the elegance that goes with this theme, but what we absolutely adore is the fashion!
4. French Garden Party: Ever since we saw the SAG awards party with its Parisian Greenhouse theme we’ve been hoping for it to take off! Such a stunning, live theme with endless possibilities in scale, decor and applicability!
5. Radiant Orchid: Run with the Pantone color of 2014! Center your party around this classy, shining color! Imagine mixing and matching it with tones and textures to create a beautiful, mature atmosphere around any event! We haven’t been able to get enough of this color at ABCey and can’t wait to mix and match shades and textures of it to create a vibrant, modern mood.
What are your favorite party theme trends of 2014? We’d love to hear them in the comments section below, or on Facebook and Twitter!
ABCey’s Weekend Lineup 1.23.14 – 1.26.14
We are so excited for all the fun things going on in San Francisco this weekend! Here at ABCey, we like to get a jump start by coming up with our plans for the days ahead. Here are the events we are really looking forward to!
FEATURED EVENT: Beats for Boobs | Saturday, January 25th| Mezzanine| 7pm| The volunteer based fundraiser is kicking off 2014 by celebrating its 10 Year Anniversary! Come out and enjoy the fun while contributing to a great cause. Beats for Boobs San Francisco has been raising funds for local breast cancer organizations for a decade! The event combines a live fashion show, food, DJ lineup, art, and education. This is a can’t miss celebration! The fun doesn’t stop there, challenge yourself by taking on the Boobie Prize Wheel, and hey, it’s all for an amazing cause. I know where I’ll be spending my Saturday! Purchase your tickets, and if you can’t make it, you can still give a donation.
1. Tech in Motion: Startup to Success | Thursday, January 23rd| Startup House| 6:30pm-8pm| Join the first Tech in Motion meet-up of 2014! Tech in Motion San Francisco is hosting its first ever panel discussion. Various experts in the tech industry will be participating by sharing their secrets to success. Perri Blake Gorman, Founder and CEO of Archively, a company that approaches problems in HR Tech, will serve as the moderator for the panel. Tech industry participants include Poornima Vijayashanker, Scott Bedard, Jakob Storm, and Kieran Farr. Hear their great insights and learn how you can be successful in the industry!
2. Smug Shift | Friday, January 24th| The Verdi Club| 10:30pm| Local comedians Brent Weinbach and Moshe Kasher began their comedy show in Oakland called Smug Shift. Their show is unique because it takes stand-up comedy out of the club, and into warehouse spaces and rock venues! These two comedians draw in audiences that wouldn’t normally go out to see comedy by bringing the comedy club to them! With sketch and video included throughout their show, Brent and Moshe will put on an unforgettable performance as part of SF Sketchfest! Named “Best of the Bay” by the East Bay Express, this is a comical experience you don’t want to miss.
3. Battle of the Decades| Friday, January 24th| Monroe| 6pm-10pm| Combine a Happy Hour, after work party, theme night, and DJ showcase and what do you get?! An awesome Friday night! Here is what you can expect for this fun-filled event: a Food Truck, and each hour representing a different decade of music and drink prices! 6 pm kicks off with 70’s music with 70’s drink prices. Each hour moves through the 80’s, 90’s, 2000’s, and the current top 40 music selections! Come out to see which decade is your favorite.
4. San Francisco Symphony | Saturday, January 25th| Davies Symphony Hall| 2pm| This production is both exciting and enjoyable for all ages! The kid-sized classical concert is designed for families in the Bay area. It explores Music Here, There, Everywhere! Music is everywhere in our lives, and people of all ages can learn to appreciate the sounds they hear wherever they go. Tickets come at a reasonable cost, and are half price for ages 17 and under. Enjoy a family filled Saturday with the San Francisco Symphony!
5. San Francisco Fine Print Fair | Saturday, January 25th – Sunday, January 26th| The Golden Gate Club | 10 am-6pm| The annual Fair is made up of comprehensive printmaking created by renowned artists. The event is organized by the International Fine Print Dealers Association, a non-profit organization. All work can be purchased at an affordable price. Gruenwald Press will put on printmaking demonstrations during the day. At 10 am on Sunday, January 26th, come out for a free lecture presented by Michael Labrie, Director of Collections at the Walt Disney Family Museum.
Go Mobile: Event Apps We Can’t Get Enough Of
Staying connected to events and conferences is key for many attendees and event planners these days. Today, we’d like to introduce you to some of our favorite apps to keep your event running smoothly and connected with attendees! We love these apps and can’t imagine planning future events and conventions without them!
1. Attendify: This app builder lets you pick from two stunning interfaces and it guidesyou step by step. This feature eliminates all guesswork and gives you the ability to post last minute changes and information about your event. We love the ease of use, and simple step by step guides!
2. EventMobi: EventMobi features tons of interactive and engaging features to keep everyone up to date about your event and agenda. With its simple drag and drop customization, you can highlight and emphasize the most important features of your event. EventMobi goes one step further and allows you to include your event logo and branding, a feature we are head over heels with!
3. Live Cube: This all in one gamefication app allows you to create the ultimate engaging experience. We love the incorporation of social interaction, agendas, and gaming, as well as polls and surveys. We can’t get enough of its interactive interface!
4. Planspot: Want to place your event on social media platforms and broadcast it? Planspot can help by putting all of the information for your event, registration, and links in one sector and promoting it. What we love about this app is the ability to track conversations about it on Twitter and Facebook from one platform!
5. DoubleDutch: This San Francisco based company has the goal to create the most user friendly app for your event! They even create subsets within the same app for multiple venues as well as an Offline Mode, which we love for those times when WiFi and data coverage get tough.
What mobile event apps have you used for your conference or event? Which ones are you faves? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter!
Tech Tuesday: Crowdtilt
The 7th Annual Crunchies Awards are just around the corner! Here at ABCey, we did lots of digging and research to cast our votes. There are truly some unique companies and apps up for nomination! Let’s take a look at a platform from the tech world that stood out to us: Crowdtilt.
Crowdtilt is nominated in the Best Collaborative Consumption Service category. It serves as the largest funding platform for group experiences, purchases, and causes! Crowdtilt is a quick and simple way to pool funds with your friends and family.
This platform makes it a breeze to collect money for shared experiences such as group vacations and birthday parties. Costs can be split evenly for group purchases like wedding gifts, concert tickets, or dinner parties. Is there a cause near and dear to your heart? Support your favorite non-profit or local community by pooling funds through Crowdtilt.
Check out the video on How it Works! Let’s break it down. There are 3 easy steps to how Crowdtilt can collect funds for you.
1. Set things up: Develop a campaign by creating a description for it, add an image, and choose how much money you want to raise or collect.
2. Spread the word: Generate buzz by telling friends and family about your campaign through social media. Email, tweet, and post on Facebook!
3. Get paid: As soon as the campaign tilts, every participant’s card is charged. You will get the funds via direct deposit.
We love what Crowdtilt has to offer! Would you try it to plan your next group vacation, dinner party, or fundraiser? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook & Twitter! Don’t forget to vote and purchase your ticket for the 7th Annual Crunchies Awards!
Startup Monday: Bitcoin
Have you heard of Bitcoin? They made waves at CES 2013, and since then they have become one of the most talked about startups in the world. First of all, what is Bitcoin? For those who don’t know- Bitcoin is an alternative payment system that is completely digital and independent. It’s secret founder(s) revealed it in January of 2009 as a potential replacement for paper money, a global digital currency.
This all sounds great, but how do you get your hands on Bitcoins? If you’re tech savvy and have the hardware you can digitally mine them. However, if you are, like some of us at ABCey, you can buy them using traditional currency, or trade goods and services the old fashioned way.
Is Bitcoin even accepted as a form of payment in everyday use? The answer is yes! Gap, Target and Overstock.com are some retailers that accept the currency online, and even the Sacramento Kings accept Bitcoin for ticket purchases! There are no fees for Bitcoin transactions making it perfect for small businesses to use and incorporate into their profit systems.
What is the future of Bitcoin, traditional currency, or other digital currencies? It is yet to be seen, but what we do know is that Bitcoin has blown the world away with its concept, and ease of use and value. Will Bitcoin boom or bubble?! Let us know what you think its future holds in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter!