Emerald City Applause Awards



Best Catered Event | Foodz Catering

for Farm to Factory
Farm to Factory was a colloquial take on the concept of Farm to Table. We envisioned a modern version of culinary art, cuisine, and creativity inspired by Andy Warhol for the Factory. Outside we had The Farm, which would embellish Southern concepts in food and beverage including BBQ and whiskey.

Best Corporate Event Budget Over $50,000  | Microsoft
for Summer of One
This summer, we gathered to celebrate Summer of One—four months jam-packed with opportunities to connect, create and celebrate with fellow employees as One Microsoft. Summer of One brought together our Redmond campus community to participate in fun, meaningful experiences, while enjoying the best of Seattle summers.

Best Corporate Event Budget Under $50,000 | Raquel Babcock, One Eighty / Leisure Care
for 2019 Thanksgiving Luncheon

One Eighty & Leisure Care's Annual Thanksgiving Luncheon is for corporate employees set in Downtown Seattle on the 45th Floor of the Wells Fargo Building. This highly anticipated luncheon is produced by a corporate event planner with the on site culinary chef executing the menu.

Best Creative Solution | Megan Schultz
for The AAA Executive Conference
The AAA Executive Conference was a 3 day conference for 300 people held at the Hyatt Regency Lake Washington in Oct of 2019. The conference had multiple social events for their guests each day. In total we had over 20 vendors and 7 room flips to create the perfect event.

Best Designed Event | Tolo Events
for Sugarland

Whimsical candy swirls and stripes, life-size gummy bears and giant stars filled the event venue as 700 guests enjoyed a fun three-hour symposium party after a full day of meetings. This colorful event was filled with delicious sweets, treats and drinks as they mingled under 16’ purple LED trees.

Best Event Marketing | BLUE INK
for Sports In Schools Annual Gala
Event branding, marketing materials and event signage for the Sports In Schools Auction and Gala including Logo Design, Save the Date, Invite, Floor Graphics, Wall Wraps, Elevator Wraps and Photography Backdrops. This project included both graphic design and printing.

Best Event Support Services | CORT Party Rental
for Sunriver Leadership Summit
Around 200 guests of the company took over the Sunriver Resort in Bend, Oregon from September 15-17, 2019 for a three day leadership summit. The centerpiece of the event was the 30mx45m (100’x148’) structure equipped with special features allowed the client to bring their vision of the event to life.

Best Industry Innovation | LightSmiths
for Synthwave Social
LightSmiths created a modular 3D backdrop tile system called 'LumiShapes' that was inspired by their client's event theme, and it's now a popular staple item in the LightSmiths inventory. We believe we created a true industry innovation that did not previously exist that deserves its own ECAA recognition.

Best Live Event Entertainment | The Great Surprisal & CircusWerks
for A Night at the Circus
“A Night at The Circus” was produced over a period of six months, resulting in a magical evening of circus themed VIP dinner theatre and roving, eclectic characters. Entertaining over 2,000 guests, we showcased one-of-a-kind acts, utilizing timeless vintage circus looks and top tier talent.

Best Non-Profit Event Budget Over $50,000 | Tolo Events
for Big Opera Party
Seattle Opera’s first annual “Big Opera Party” in their new home at Seattle Center. Guests enjoyed curated, one-night only entertainment, bid on opera experiences around the globe in the Live Auction to support Opera programs, and dined among the Carmen set on stage at McCaw Hall.

Best Non-Profit Event Budget Under $50,000 | GFS Events
for Youth Wise Mentoring Gala 2019
The Fundraiser for a small nonprofit was held on October 12, 2019 at a beautiful venue in northern Seattle. Over 120 supporters gathered to fundraise and celebrate the work of the nonprofit. The nonprofit’s mission is to mentor kids in need so they can grow and reach their full potential.

Best Photography | Nat Seymour | Be Good Event Photography
for 2019 SCUP Conference
From formal keynotes, to a marshmallow team-building exercise, to a group photo and headshots, to an epic party at Chihuly Garden and Glass, this 1,500 person event of planning professionals in Seattle was a challenge and joy to photograph.

Best Public Event | GFS Events
for Seattle Furry 5K 2019
The Seattle Furry 5K was held June 9, 2019 at a lakeside park in Seattle. 1,800 runners and 1,000 furry friends gathered for the largest 5K dog-inclusive event in the region. For this complicated event, we coordinated 200 volunteers, 50 vendor booths, EMTs, food trucks, waste management, security and rentals.

Best Social Event Budget Under $50,000 | Pink Blossom Events
for Sahaee's 1st Birthday Party
With two months to plan an over-the-top hot air balloon themed 1st Birthday I discovered finding a balloon company during fall as well as a venue that suited my client’s vision proved a challenge. Yet this October my clients stood in front of an inflated balloon celebrating a 1st Birthday.

Best Team Effort | Lola Creative
for Bluehat Conference 2019

This NW inspired event and conference was held for guests to learn, connect, and let loose. The interior of the venue held the conference. An exterior tent was transformed to provide some time to chill Cascadia style. Our team worked together to solve roadblocks that arose from the Sounder’s playoffs.

Best Wedding Event Budget Under $50,000 | Foodz Catering
for Sara & Ryan's Enchanted Garden Wedding

Romantics Sarah and Ryan dreamed of taking their vows deep in an enchanted forest for their July 6th ceremony. What better place to share this special moment with their friends and family than tucked away on Bainbridge Island, where the bride's family resides and shares three adjoining properties?

2019 ILEA Seattle Hall of Fame Recipient
Bruce Skinner 

ILEA Seattle's Emerald City Applause Awards is Going Virtual!

Log in Wednesday, June 24th from 5-7 pm as we announce and feature the winners of the 2020 Emerald City Applause Awards. Our Emcee for the evening, Jason Cotnoir will be streaming live from BLUE INK as the digital geniuses at GeoTeaming produce the first of it's kind award celebration! The event will be donation optional. Donations collected will benefit ILEA Seattle's Membership Scholarship fund to support members during renewal this year.

Foodz Catering has created a customized party package menu. Place an order any time before June 16th for day-of-event delivery in the greater Seattle and Eastside areas. Be sure to award yourself by adding a  Clementine Smash to any order! 

A Dash of Adorable |  Be Good Event Photography |  BLUE INK |  Cafe Pacific Catering |  CORT Party Rental |  Event Experience |  Foodz Catering |  Geoteaming |  GFS Events |  Kayla Cook Events |  LightSmiths |  Lola Creative |  Microsoft |  One Eighty / Leisure Care |  Party on the Rocks Event Staffing & Bartending Service |  Pedersen's Event Rentals |  Pink Blossom Events |  PJ Hummel & Company, Inc. |  SHW, LLC |  Synchronicity Events |  Tentwood Events |  The Great Surprisal & CircusWerks |  Tolo Events |  Wilkinson Events & WIPA


Event Branding 

From imagination to production, BLUE INK is a full-service agency offering creative services and branding across all media channels including logo discovery, business identity, publication design, digital, print and social media, large format digital printing and custom space transformation with oversized print and installation.

We strive for flawless execution at the pace of your business. 

BLUE INK offers a unique value in our ability to see a project from creation to execution. No more calling two places to get on project done. Our creative printing capabilities include projects as small as half an inch sticker for a business cards, to 50-foot wall wraps and billboard sized outdoor banners. BLUE INK offers standard printing, large format digital printing and custom print and design for oversized outdoor and indoor projects.

Event Production

We connect client goals to results via custom game design and skilled facilitation.  Our secret formula changes how teams or groups think and work together.

You can learn more about our programs on The Geo Experience page. Our signature process is a high-tech adventure using GPS located missions, digital cameras and smart phones to navigate teams through an obstacle course of virtual, physical and cerebral challenges.

Master of Ceremonies | Event Production
Jason Cotnoir; Emcee

The bold. The brilliant. The Kingpin Planner and driving force of the 2020 Emerald City Applause Awards, Jason Cotnoir is an extreme event professional. Jason spends his days brightening the halls of his day job and overseeing events from here to China. Literally. Event-King Cotnoir will emcee the evening with details on tonight’s nominees, winners and sponsors. Jason serves our event community on the Board of Directors with ILEA Seattle as the Director of Awards.

Foodz Catering

Foodz is an award-winning team of culinary artists and event specialists provides a diverse array of globally-inspired menus, arranged in tastefully elegant presentations. Our global culinary background provides an unparalleled depth for sophisticated or casual menu planning and presentation, with a focus on current, innovative, and high flavor profiles.

Foodz Catering exists to create beautiful, enjoyable experiences that tantalize the senses of taste, smell, touch, and sight. We use nothing but the finest ingredients to craft exquisitely delectable food. Artful and pleasing to the eye; delightful to the palate.

Venue Sponsor:
Axis Pioneer Square

AXIS Pioneer Square provides a dramatic special event venue located in the classic Globe Building of Pioneer Square. Gallery AXIS is proud to be a part of the thriving Pioneer Square art scene, hosting monthly rotating exhibitions from a diverse group of local artists.

With great pride, AXIS has preserved 10,000sqft within the historic 1889 Globe Building as Seattle’s most exciting event space. Our two joinable spaces are centered on a series of 15’ brick archways, blending seamlessly into antique wood floors with a sprinkle of industrial-modern design. The versatility of AXIS allows us to perfectly accommodate small gatherings all the way up to large events of 550 guests (cocktail style). Our venue is one of the only large capacity non-hotel event spaces in downtown Seattle and is easy walking distance to numerous downtown hotels, as well as the burgeoning Pioneer Square restaurant and bar scene (right out our back door).

The modular AXIS space is designed by event professionals to allow you to customize your event within our stunning confines. Our experienced event staff is the best in the business and proudly awaits the opportunity to make your next event truly extraordinary.

Gallery AXIS is proud to be a part of the thriving Pioneer Square art scene, hosting monthly rotating exhibitions from a diverse group of local artists. Gallery AXIS is open Monday-Friday during regular business hours, dependent on Venue’s Event Schedule, and grows to a monthly 10,000sqft exhibition as we debut our new work for 1st Thursday Art Walk each month. Come stop by next time you are in the neighborhood and be sure to join us for art, entertainment and surprises during our openings each 1st Thursday, 5-9 pm.

Lighting & AV Sponsor:
Crimson Haze Event Lighting

Crimson Haze Event Lighting is a happy husband-wife team with a passion for lighting! We love collaborating with our clients and fellow vendors to create amazing events together. Below are some highlights about our business and approach.
Design Décor Sponsor:
Tolo Events

We work hard, we have fun, we exceed expectations. We produce events nationwide and have resources that enable us to create amazing events wherever our clients need us. Our approach helps our clients to advance their mission, message and brand to their audiences through memorable experiences and interactions. What sets Tolo Events apart? We’re one of very few event companies that creates, designs and oversees all key elements of an event experience. This enables our clients’ vision to be cohesive and the planning process to be seamless.

Photography Sponsor:
Alan Alabastro Photography

Professional Commercial photography company providing high-quality digital content for Corporate and Non-Profit organizations seeking to tell a relevant and compelling story to enhance their brand identity. We specialize in Special Events, Conferences & Conventions, Live Performance, Travel/Adventure and Portraits.

Event Rental Sponsor:
CORT Rental

CORT Party Rental has been the premier event rental company in Washington State for 50 years. Our highly experienced team is standing by to provide you with unparalleled assistance, service and event knowledge. We are dedicated to making your special day the memory of a lifetime.

CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway Company, is the world's largest provider of furniture rental, trade show and event furnishings, and relocation and transition services. With more than 100 offices, showrooms and clearance centers across the United States, operations in the United Kingdom and a proprietary global network in over 70 countries around the world, CORT is dedicated to helping people and companies create environments that make a house a home, an office a great place to work, and an event memorable - no matter where, when or for how long. For more information, please visit www.cort.com.

Soft Seating Rental Sponsor:
CORT Party

At CORT, we believe that the details matter.

We believe that every day should be lived to its fullest and everyone should be given a chance to do great things. That’s why we started the furniture revolution more than 40 years ago, designed to create comfortable homes for people looking for furniture on their terms.

DJ Sponsor:
Bamboo Beats

Hey there! We are Isaac and Jojo Dyckhoff, the husband and wife team that founded Bamboo Beats. Isaac is the DJ and Jojo is the Vibe Manager. We started our Seattle Wedding DJ business in 2005, a few years after we got married. Like many of you searching right now, we couldn’t find an amazing wedding DJ for our wedding that could deliver the party vibe we expected from our club days and the professionalism we needed to run the show. So we put together our own team to rock our wedding and then decided to rock yours!

Photobooth Sponsor:
Orion Entertainment

The Founder of Orion Entertainment, David Schwartz, started the company when he was a freshman at the University of Washington. He got his start DJing house parties in the Greek System, and eventually transitioned into playing clubs, bars, and private events. 6 years later, David, (Orion) has performed at hundreds of events all across the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Now a premier destination Wedding and Event DJ his love for music and travel has propelled him from Hawaii to Boston. David loves to blend unexpected genres and decades together - his passion for music and DJing is always reflected in his sets whether playing a wedding, nightclub, bar mitzvah or corporate event. Recently, he received recognition from Honey Books and the Rising Tide, as one of their 20 on the Rise for 2019 in the Event Professionals Category. He was also selected by the Bridal Masterclass Experience to be a Hands-on Coordinator and share his experience with fellow wedding professionals. David loves to spend time with his dog Ranger, craft new ideas for the business, watch soccer, go camping/hiking, and cook in his spare time.

Videography Sponsor:
BrainFitted Media | Ronald Patton

For 10+ years it’s been our duty to create and serve in the event experience world. Going from producing concerts and events in college to now producing content for small-large sized corporations, we’ve always centered our focus around how we can best tell the stories of others.

Our company, BrainFitted Media, encompasses digital content (videography & photography), digital branding & consulting.  Yes, that’s a lot of hats to wear but our team is driven, passionate & strive for the best in everything we do. Everyday. Anywhere. We deliver ingenious, creative expertise. In our world, ideas are the people behind them.

BallPit Sponsor: 
A Dash of Adorable

Hosting an elevated event is a stressful task. Your days are often filled with endless online searches to find the perfect decor. After you scroll the internet for hours, you continue to feel frustrated, only to learn your ideal theme doesn’t exist anywhere!

At A Dash of Adorable we build dream events based on unique visions. Equipped with extensive DIY tools, any imaginable design is possible! If you can Pin it, we can make it. Save yourself the anxiety of waiting for an Etsy order, call us instead, we deliver custom pieces onsite. 

The most hard-to-please clients will be amazed by your transformed live event space. Let us handle the glitter while you enjoy the compliments.

Balloon Design Sponsor:
Confete Party Box

In a world that popularizes expediency and efficiency, it is so important to make moments last with the people you care most about. Special occasions are meant to commemorate relationships and celebrate the connections we have built, but partying is no simple task; insert Confete Party. We pride ourselves in offering beautiful partyware delivered to your doorstep and making your party a huge hit without all the hassle. In every party box a style guide is slipped in full of tips and tricks on how to setup the product and make your life that much easier. By offering three separate party box options we give you the ability to be as creative as you want (or don’t want).

Musical Entertainment:
The Jewel Tones
The Jewel Tones are a Motown-inspired vocal trio who perform hits by The Supremes, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Stevie Wonder, Martha & The Vandellas, The Jackson 5, and many more. The Jewel Tones deliver sparkling personality, stellar vocals, fun choreography, and a classic 1960s look and are available to perform at events and venues throughout the greater Seattle, WA area. Learn more and view our photos and demo reel at http://PremierVocalEntertainment.com/TheJewelTones.asp.

Award Submission Information
Read the Submission Guidelines and FAQ here.

Being an Emerald City Applause Award recipient provides the distinct competitive advantage to present your award-winning event or program to customers, potential clients, vendors and colleagues.  The award reminds your industry peers of your team's hard work, creativity, uniqueness, accomplishments and industry expertise.

The Emerald City Applause Awards (ECAAs) were developed to acknowledge and honor Washington event industry professionals and their finest examples of creativity, planning, strategic management, resourcefulness and successful event solutions throughout the year.  The awards offer multiple categories that represent the different disciplines within the event industry.

Here are this year's catergories.

Best Industry Innovation

This category honors individuals or companies that have developed a new idea, product or process that further elevates the event industry.  The innovation could be a new technology, method, device, a product, service or service ware item that increased the success of a singular event or events industry as a whole.

Best Creative Solution

This category honors individuals or companies that have met and overcome significant and/or unique challenges such as unusual or difficult client demands/requests, locations, logistics and/or time frames in the planning and production of an event.  Please Note: Limited budgets do not qualify as an award-worthychallenge.

Best Catered Event

This award honors excellence and creativity in the use of food and/or beverage at an event through culinaryplanning, preparation, execution and/or presentation. No weight will be given to the size or scope of the event. The event merit will be equally based on culinary and service excellence and creativity.

Best Live Event Entertainment

This category recognizes the use of live entertainment, performance, or presentation to enhance and contribute to the overall theme and vision of an event. Examples of entrants include speakers, musicians, auctioneers, masters of ceremonies, interactive entertainment, and performers. This award honors excellence in any of the following categories: stage presence, showmanship, technique and skills, uniqueness, artistry, creativity, and/or audience engagement.

Best Designed Event

This category honors excellence in a cohesive event design to achieve the goals of the event. Design/Décor elements includes, but are not limited to; theme décor, linen selection, props, and scenery and/or display design, floral design and balloon artistry.

Best Event Support Services

This category honors excellence in event support services.  Eligible entrants include but are not limited to, component of the event such as tenting, transportation, rentals, linens, furniture and/or other support services. 

est Technical Production
This category honors excellence in special event technical production, design or execution services. Eligible items include, but are not limited to, audio visual, multi-media, sound, lighting, special effects, video mapping, staging and rigging.

Best Meeting/Conference

Entrants in this category should display excellence in the area of meetings and conferences, such as educational or information sharing gatherings for shared interest groups, industries, universities, societies, corporations, or non-profits. Eligible entrants include event planning professionals, producers, vendors, facilities or venues. 

Best Public Event

This category honors excellence in planning and implementing events that are attended by the general public. Events in this category may include, but are not limited to, street fairs, festivals, tradeshows, concerts, and sporting events.

Best Photography

This category honors excellence in event photography by capturing the essence of the event through visual medium – photography. Award worthy submissions exhibit excellence in any of the following categories: impact, creativity, style, composition, print presentation, center of interest, lighting, subject matter, technical excellence or storytelling.


Best Videography

This category honors excellence in event videography by capturing the essence of the event through visual medium – videography, live event streaming, for event experience or post-event. Award worthy submissions exhibit excellence in any of the following categories: impact, creativity, style, composition, center of interest, lighting, subject matter, technical excellence or storytelling.

est Event Marketing

This award honors creativity and effectiveness in event marketing and its strategy and design. Entries will be judged on the creative use of event and (where appropriate) organizational brands, and success of strategies used to promote an event, which may include: Design/packaging elements include brand, promotional collateral, or web presence. Implementation and cohesiveness of the marketing strategy, which may include but is not limited to, the use of advertising, social media, online and/or experiential marketing.

Best Team Effort

This award recognizes a team effort for an entire event or portion of an event. This category requires three or more companies/organizations and at least one ILEA member to be eligible. The team leader is responsible for the entry submission and full payment.  Please note: In this entry, the participants must be only referred to as caterer, decorator, florist, etc. (or similar descriptions that eliminate specific names).
MEMBER PARTICIPATION: Each team member (including the Primary Entrant) should write a description of their role and contribution to the success of the event.
SUCCESS: The Primary Entrant should explain how the team worked together to accomplish the client’s goals and objectives for the event. 

BUDGET SPECIFIC: These categories require you to choose a budget level and to upload the supporting budget documentation. For these categories, a budget MUST be uploaded, or the entry will be disqualified.

est Non-Profit Event
This category honors excellence in non-profit events. This category may include fundraising events such as galas, auctions, luncheons/breakfasts or runs/walks. Other events planned for non-profits such as donor cultivation/stewardship events, visibility or milestone events (such as campaign events, kick-offs, or anniversaries) are also eligible.
-Budget under $50,000
-Budget over $50,000

est Social Event (Non-Wedding)

This category honors excellence in social event planning. Eligible entrants include social event planning professionals and other entities that provide these types of social event planning services. Events in this category include, but are not limited to, bar/bat mitzvah, personal celebrations, holiday parties, Milestone birthdays i.e. Sweet 16, 40, 50 etc.  Please note: Weddings are not eligible in this category; see Best Wedding Category.

-Budget under $50,000
-Budget over $50,000

Best Corporate Event

This category honors excellence in corporate event planning. Eligible entrants include corporate event planning professionals, facility or venue managers, producers and managers of events for corporations.  Events in this category may include, but are not limited to, company celebrations, employee or client appreciation events, grand openings, product launches, training sessions, sales events.  

-Budget under $50,000
-Budget over $50,000

st Wedding Event

This category honors excellence in weddings and wedding related events. Eligible entrants include wedding planners, catering sales manages, venue managers. Submissions in this category should have a major role in the final outcome of the event. Events in this category are limited to weddings related events only.  

-Budget under $50,000
-Budget over $50,000

2019 ECAA Winners:

Foodz Catering - Best Catered Event
Microsoft - Best Corporate Event Budget Over $50,000
Alexander Party Rentals - Best Creative Solution
Tolo Events LLC. - Best Designed Event
Sunny Umbrella Design Co. - Best Event Marketing
CORT Party Rental - Best Event Support Services
Tentwood Events - Best Industry Innovation
Animate Objects - Best Live Event Entertainment
Microsoft - Best Meeting/Conference
XPL - Best Non-Profit Event Budget Over $50,000
GFS Events - Best Non-Profit Event Budget Under $50,000
Be Good Event Photography - Best Photography
GFS Events - Best Public Event
XPL - Best Team Effort
June Films - Best Videography
Perfectly Posh Events - Best Wedding Event Budget Under $50,000
Melissa Jurcan, CSEP - Hall of Fame