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    5 New Year's Resolutions To Make Your 2016 Great!

    Last updated 1 year ago

    Happy New Year everyone!

    Have you put together your list of New Year’s resolutions for 2016 yet?

    Of course there will be the classic ones, like “eat healthier,” “work harder,” or “finally go to the gym,” but what about making some changes that’ll make 2016 a little more interesting and help you grow as a person?

    We’ve put together these 5 extremely easy resolutions to follow that just about anyone will benefit from.

    Be More Social

    Meet new people! When we say “be more social” we don’t mean go on social media and add some new friends, we’re talking about going into the real world and having real life conversations with people, face to face, in person! It’s easy, especially in a city as diverse as Chicago. Join a bowling league, go to more bars with live music, play WhirlyBall, go to a sports game, walk through the park, the list goes on. Being more social in 2016 will not only help you meet new friends, but it will add an interesting spice to your routine and get you out of the funk of being lazy.

    Learn More About Craft Beers

    Chicago is quickly becoming the Craft Beer hub of America. With new breweries popping up every month, there is a lot to learn about the rich culture of Craft Beers and how they’re made. The best part about researching new Craft Brews is that you’ll get to try an enormous variety of different blends and flavors, ultimately allowing you to finally decide what style of beer is most “you.” Getting into this resolution is relatively simple because breweries like Lagunitas, 3 Floyds, and Revolution Brewery offer brewery tours multiple times a week. At a brewery tour you’ll get to try all sorts of Craft Beers, learn how they’re made, and see the environment that brew masters operate in to perfect their craft (pun intended). This resolution will also help out with number one as well because you always meet awesome like-minded people on a brew tour! And even if a tour isn’t your thing, there’s still ample opportunities to try Chicago’s best Craft Beers; for instance, bars like WhirlyBall and Cobra Lounge are famous for offering the best of the best local Craft beers. If you want some for home, Binny’s Beverage Depot will have an unmatchable collection to offer. 

    Visit Different Neighborhoods

    It’s easy to get comfortable with the neighborhood you live or work in, but there’s so much of Chicago that you may not have seen! Diversify your surroundings. Make it a point to visit some neighborhoods that you aren't very familiar with and spend some time delving into new cultures. The CTA makes it way too easy for you to get just about anywhere in Chicago, so what’s stopping you? Every neighborhood in Chicago from Pilsen to Logan Square is just as unique and worth-visiting as the one you are most familiar with. Don’t let the anxiety of “not belonging” steer you away from experiencing your city! This resolution will enhance your appreciation for different cultures and travelling. Nothing makes you more interesting than changing up your norm!

    Spend More Time With Family

    Seriously, do it. Your family matters more than anything else in this world. We know you’re busy and you don’t always have the time to hang with family, but make time, it’s worth it. We promise. Make it a point in 2016 to go on adventures, eat meals, go out on the town, play games, vacation, and do anything with your family members more than you have in the past. If you don’t live in the same state, or even country, as your loved ones spend an extra couple of hours each week talking on the phone with them and sharing stories. They will feel appreciated and you will feel much closer to the people who you truly care for. An easy way to get started would be to book a party at WhirlyBall and have a night of laughs and togetherness. Or just stay in and have a good old-fashioned game night. Get closer to ultimate happiness!

    Sample Different Foods

    One of the best ways to make your life a little more interesting is switching up your meal options! Next time you go to the grocery store, buy 10-15 ingredients you normally wouldn’t buy and make some delicious new dishes. It’s the 21st century, even if you don’t know how to cook, the internet could teach you. Just look up some recipes online and follow along or create something of your own. When you can’t cook for yourself or you simply don’t want to, go to a restaurant you’ve never been. Trying new food is incredibly rewarding and adds some flavor to your life.

    Choose any number of these 5 simple New Year’s resolutions and we guarantee 2016 will be full of personal-growth and happiness. Happy New Year y’all! We can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store! :) 

    5 Tips for Pulling Off a Last-Minute Holiday Party

    Last updated 1 year ago

    You never meant for it to be like this. Maybe that dream venue fell through. Maybe the boss decided to have you plan the event instead. Or maybe you just put it off. Either way, you have two weeks left of the holidays and the clock is ticking. Can you pull off a last-minute holiday party?

    DON’T PANIC – WRITE IT OUT! Jot down all the details of the event. How many guests will be able to make it? Do you want a fancy dinner party, a cozy get-together, a loud shindig, or an activity for attendees? What can you afford? If you’ve been at the company a while, what has worked before?

    LAND THE DREAM VENUE! The two weeks before Christmas are the busiest for the corporate world. However, most of those parties are on Thursdays and Wednesdays (followed by Fridays and Saturdays). Most are during “prime time”, 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm. If prime time is booked, why not an office luncheon? Depending on the venue, earlier time slots can save planners 25-35% in costs.

    HAVE FUN WITH THE FOOD & DRINK! Hopefully your venue is a one-stop shop with catering as well but if it isn’t, never fear. Not every party needs to be a feast. Sometimes open-house cocktails and finger foods will be a hit, and sometimes the classic potluck and holiday treats will be more than enough to please the office.

    Tip: inquire about the later party’s catering menu and seeing if your party can order from the same menu, saving both you and the venue money!

    HAVE A NON-TRADITIONAL PARTY! Leave the other offices to book the bland conference centers and hotel convention rooms. Think outside the box to increase your chances of getting a space in so little time. How about a restaurant, coffee bar, wineries, bowling, or museum? The more creative you are, the more memorable the party will be.

    OUT OF LUCK? POSTPONE! More and more companies are holding their holiday parties in January after the holiday break. Why not jump on the trend? Social calendars will be less busy and there will be less stress to get the “perfect” venue when less party planners are competing with you.

    WhirlyBall is accepting all last-minute holiday party plans! Book an event at the new WhirlyBall Chicago in Bucktown to play in one of our brand new WhirlyBall courts, multi-floor lasertag arena or 12 bowling lanes.
    Just visit http://www.whirlyball.com/planning/reservations!

    4 Recurring Life Events That Can Be Saved By Adding Bumper Cars

    Last updated 1 year ago

    No matter what, at some point or another you’ll be forced to sit through a terrible, yawn-worthy event. Whether it’s making awkward small talk at an office mixer, passing the time staring at your phone at the yearly work training event, crumpling napkins out of boredom at an award ceremony, or pretending to pay attention at the company retreat, you will undoubtedly suffer through a boring event or two. It’s inevitable.

    Luckily for you, we’re here to tell you your next mandatory event doesn’t have to bore you to tears! After all, legend has it there has never been an event of any kind at WhirlyBall that wasn’t totally awesome. 

    Let’s take a look at some events that COULD have been saved by simply adding bumper cars!

    The Office Holiday Party

    You spend your whole year in the same office with the same people, why would you want to celebrate the holidays from where you’re forced to work every single day? Get your entire office pumped for this year’s holiday party and head to the most fun place in the Midwest. It’s a holiday PARTY, not a holiday “can’t wait to get out of here.” Go above and beyond and show the office your appreciation and holiday spirit with a raging party at WhirlyBall! Awkward mistletoe moments might be unavoidable, but lame holiday parties definitely are!

    The Mandatory Boring Training Seminar

    Every year you keep a giant X on your calendar on one date in particular. This X symbolizes the dread you have for your work’s yearly mandatory training seminar. A lot of work places are guilty of hosting such repetitive, boring events, yet no one does anything to liven up the room.  Let’s face it, training for work is important, BUT no one’s learning anything when half the room is steadily sleeping through the event. At WhirlyBall, we have conference rooms perfect for conducting all your training responsibilities. Your guests will stay alert during the seminar since they know what’s coming: WhirlyBall, bowling, and lasertag! Keep em` excited and engaged, the payoff will speak for itself.

    The Awkward High School Reunion

    High school reunions have so much potential! However, when you haven’t seen any of your old classmates in years and don’t even remember half of their names, some reunions tend to start awkwardly. Ditch the small talk and fake smiles and get right to the celebrating! When you throw your reunion at WhirlyBall, there isn’t much room for awkward behavior. Don’t know what to say? Talk about how awesome the night is going to be with all these games and old friends. Don’t remember the guy that insists he was your best friend freshmen year? Get him on your WhirlyBall team and become his current best friend! Plus, WhirlyBall’s craft beer list goes on for days and days, so you’re bound to get the conversations flowing real quick! Not to mention all the delicious food and other menu items that will keep the crowd satisfied from start to finish.

    The Uneventful Birthday Party

    Birthday parties should be the highlight of the year, not a drag to get through! There’s nothing worse than getting pumped for your buddies birthday party and realizing it’s just not that fun. It’s hard to mess this type of event up, but if party planning isn’t your strong suit, then let us help! Spend your birthday celebrating your youth, not getting older. WhirlyBall is the perfect event space for anyone’s birthday party. With special party packages available including drinks, food, WhirlyBall, bowling, and lasertag, the only option is to have fun!

    Your next event could be awesome! We’re here to accomplish that goal for you. Forget about the awkward small talk, trying to stay awake, and staring at your phone aimlessly, WhirlyBall hereby declares the end of boring events!

    If you need WhirlyBall to save an event that you’re dreading, visit our website at http://www.whirlyball.com/planning/ and review our event packages! To set up an event at WhirlyBall, please contact us at 773-486-7777 or email at: info@whirlyball.com.

    The Beginner's Guide To Decorating Parties Like A Boss

    Last updated 1 year ago

    Party planners, where you at?! You might not know, but your party is only as interesting as its decorations. The way you set up a space can make or break how your guests feel about your party. That’s why we’ve put together a basic list of party decoration tips that always impress the crowd. 

    (Image from tipjunkie.com)

    Pick a theme and stick with it.

    If you’re throwing a themed party it is most important you stay consistent. Throwing a Star Wars themed party? Get some galactic style streamers and balloons, make-shift light sabers, and utilize characters from the film for napkins, banners, and other party decor essentials. Themed parties have the potential to be totally awesome, if done correctly. If you’re throwing your kid a Nicktoons themed party, don’t include Disney characters. You see what we’re saying? Impress your guests with a completely unified themed party, and make sure everything from the invitations to the birthday cake follow your theme! 

    (Image from tangibleinteraction.com) 

    Incorporate interactive decorations

    People love decorations that they can play with! Find a decoration that you can incorporate into your party that guests can interact with throughout the event. Zygote Balls are a great example of an interactive party decoration; they’re large, helium-filled, inflatable balls that respond to motion through human touch and react by changing colour as they float through the air. The simplest ideas are usually the best. Of course the most classic interactive party decoration you could buy is a pinata filled with goodies. Find the pinata design that goes with your party and hang it up so partygoers can take their best whack at it! There are endless ways to incorporate interactive decorations into your party, just be creative. 

    (Image from jimmydee.com)

    Use video or digital picture frames

    If the event space has TVs, projectors, or digital picture frames, ask if you could use them as decorations. Digital photo collages and videos can take your party to the next level. If you’re throwing a wedding party create a photo collage and collect some videos of the bride and groom and play them throughout your event space. The same goes for any type of party. Birthday party? Gather pictures of the birthday boy or girl and play them on repeat! Family reunion? Make a timeline video of your family’s history and project it. Guests love looking through homemade photo and video collages - this decoration tip will liven up your event and spark conversations all night! If the event space does not have any TVs or a projector that you can use then you can buy a few cheap digital picture frames and place them on tables around your party. This simple tip separates an average party from a well-planned party.

    (Image from bizbash.com)

    Use a color as your theme

    Sometimes the best party themes are colors. If you don’t want a specific party theme based on a character, sport, show, or time-period, you can choose a color or two and make that the theme. Are you throwing a birthday party for your daughter who LOVES the color purple? Decorate her party with everything purple! Silverware, streamers, napkins, flowers, lights, EVERYTHING! Buy purple light bulbs to make your party room shine its theme. Imagine how amazed she will be when she walks in and sees her favorite color on everything, illuminated by none other than more of her favorite color. You could also mix and match; this tip is not limited to just one color. Color combinations are pretty awesome, too. This decoration idea is as simple as it comes, but doing it properly takes creative thinking and a lot of preparation. However, if you do it right, your color themed party could stun guests and make for a beautiful sight. 

    (Image from junkdrawerblog.com) 

    Go all out or don’t go at all

    Finally, if you’re going to decorate your party make sure you put some time and thought into it. Decorating a party takes time and effort. This tip is probably the most important of them all. Dull, last minute decorating looks sad and does not add any specialness to your party. If all you plan to do is hang up a couple balloons or streamers then you might as well not decorate at all. You either need to go full on party mode with your decorations or don’t go at all. People notice how hard you worked on decorating a party, but they also notice how hard you DIDN’T work on decorations if they are just thrown up haphazardly. So please party planners, do it right and put the time and effort into your decorating process or don’t do it all!.

    Now that you have the basics of how to decorate your party like a boss, it’s time for you to get planning. Find an event space suitable for your party and get to work, people! 

    To book an unforgettable party at WhirlyBall please contact us at 773-486-7777 or email us at: info@whirlyball.com

    Surviving Lasertag

    Last updated 1 year ago

    4 Survival Tips Everyone Needs to Know Before Heading Into Battle

    Lasertag is one of the finest novelty sports ever invented. It’s fun, exhilarating, and unlike any other sport. Before jumping into battle you should know some of the ins and outs of the game! Take notes as we break down the 3 must-know survival tips of playing lasertag.

    Know Your Enemy

    Like with most sports, lasertag is all about winning and having fun! Before stepping into battle make sure you size up your opponents and scope out your competition. Playing with friends? They are now your enemies. Unless, of course, you are playing on a team, in which case your teammates are your new best friends and your rivals are untrustworthy soldiers who will do anything they can to get their laser on your target (See http://www.whirlyball.com/extras/lasertag.php for WhirlyBall Lasertag rules). It gets dark on the lasertag battlefield, so make sure you’re tagging the opposing team before pulling the trigger. 

    Get Sneaky

    There are plenty of nooks and crannies for you to hide in on the lasertag battlefield. When the game begins, do your best to stay invisible and surprise your opponents. When you master the course and find the best places, you can be sneaky and scope out other lasertaggers! The sneakier you are, the better your score will be. Just remember to stay safe while doing so!

    Aim For Targets, Not Bodies

    A common mistake many lasertaggers make while in battle is aiming at an opponent's body instead of their laser target. If all you had to do to gain points was tag another player’s body with your laser the game would be too easy! Each player wears a high-tech vest with intelligent sensors on the front, back and shoulders.  When hit by an opposing team’s laser, these sensors deactivate for a couple of seconds and the tagger receives points for the hit. First-timers often leave their first lasertag battle feeling gypped because their score was low! They think, “I tagged SO many people in there, the lasers were flying, everyone was dropping like flies, I was amazing!” But the truth of the matter is it doesn’t matter how many people you tag! It only matters if your laser hits their sensors. So aim at the targets, people, your score depends on it! (Learn more about how the sensors work here http://www.whirlyball.com/extras/lasertag.php

    Play Fair And Don't Be A Sore Loser

    This tip is the most valuable lasertag survival tip of all! Everyone wants to win, but obviously not everyone can be a winner at the end of the game. Don’t take it too seriously or you’ll miss out on the pure enjoyment that is lasertag. Congratulate the winners and play fair. No one likes a cheater! Sore losers are almost as bad as cheaters. If you don’t win it’s not the end of the world! Wouldn’t you rather have an absolute blast playing this ridiculous game than spend it worrying about being the best and pouting if you don’t end up on top? The best part about lasertag is that even if you don’t win you have a lot of fun trying to! Plus, there’s always time to prepare for your next lasertag battle when you can really dominate the competition.

    Now that you know the basics it’s time for you to suit up and head into battle! 

    For more information on lasertag at WhirlyBall visit http://www.whirlyball.com/extras/lasertag.php or call us at 773-486-7777 to see how you can set up a lasertag party of your own!  

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