Ain’t No Party Like A Wowcher Party

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September 2016 saw the much-anticipated return of the Wowcher Summer Party, this year a Friday of Rio Carnival-themed festivities in the beautiful grounds and buildings of Beaumont Estate. Our benevolent leader, Roland the kind, magnificent and handsome (pay reappraisal next week), treated the entire staff to a hotel stay that included a sports day, a Wowzies ceremony and a huge buffet feast followed by an open bar that predictably spun the evening into a hazy, kaleidoscopic spectacle of lost conversation and great mirth that none of us can quite remember.

Dear readers, firstly an explanation as to why the photographs featured in this post clearly differ in quality. The first lot I took at the beginning of the night, before the drink. The second, when fellow writer Andy grabbed my arm at five past one and panickedly reminded me we’d not done a single thing we were supposed to do. The results are mixed, and I can only apologise.

Like a couple of hard-drinking, quick-witted, happy-go-lucky PIs, we’ve done our best to piece together the evening, from our own memories and accounts of others, and the rest we’ve just made up. We hope you enjoy our little feature, and continue to read posts on the Wowcher blog (please?).

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The Chapel at Beaumont Estate is a beautiful building, and the perfect religious setting for a night of debauchery and bad taste. Note to the bottom right, a drink with a name something like capybaras. Not capybaras, because those are large South American rodents of the genus Hydrochoerus, but something like that. Either way, the capybaras were a lethal instigator in undoing the fabric of our evening’s sobriety and civility. At this point that I did a little tour of the tables to allow you to get a sense of some of our colleagues.

Emily, Deputy Editor

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Trying out for a modelling career if the Wowcher gig falls through.

The Manchester Men

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For goodness sake, lads, coordinate. This is more Barnet than Brazil.

The Design Team

Chris and Alex (front and right) actually have a rare genetic condition where her head grows out of his face and only science keeps them alive. Miracle.

Chris and Alex (front right) actually have a rare genetic condition where her head grows out of his face and only science keeps them alive. Miracle.

After we’d done the table rounds it was time for the Wowzies – our Oscars knock-off where the best salespeople, managers, creative writers, and analysts in their departments are awarded with tiny pink plastic statues. Roland won Best CEO for the fourth year running, too. Well done, Roland.

The 167 categories of the award over, there was a mad rush for food and drink that stopped dead into a dawdling frenzy as men and women agonised in a few short seconds over drink or drumsticks. What followed in the immediate aftermath (and continued for six hours) had no rhyme, reason, structure or order. But it was awfully loud and extremely fun.

Right – I wasn’t joking, this is the point I forgot to keep taking photos. So we’ll shift gear and look at some of the best and worst costumes of 2016.

Bottom 5 Costumes

There were some great costumes at the Wowcher Summer Party 2016. These were none of them.

5. Matthew – National Sales

Got confused, thought we meant Rio the movie.

Got confused, thought we meant Rio the movie.

4. Josh – National Copy

The shirt and flowers may be Maracanã, but the hat’s a bit Mice and Men.

The shirt and flowers may be Maracanã, but the hat’s a bit Mice and Men.

3. Jabbar – National Sales

Wrong country, wrong culture. He’s only at 3 because he actually pulls this off quite well.

Wrong country, wrong culture. He’s only at number three because he actually pulls this off quite well.

2. Tommy – National Sales

Didn’t even try.

Didn’t even try.

1. Ben – National Sales

As far as we can tell, this get-up’s a bit Sudanese...

As far as we can tell, this get-up’s a bit Sudanese…

…So we did some research. Ben was nearly 9000km off getting the right costume for the party. The only way he could have been less accurate is if he rocked up in a kimono.

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Great stuff, Ben. Can’t wait to see what you pull off next year.

Top 5 Costumes

5.  Sexy Sam – Travel Sales

Known to all the girls (and me, because I don’t know his real name) as Sexy Sam.

Known across the land (and by me, because I don’t know his real name) as Sexy Sam.

This was taken immediately after I was reminded that I was the photographer, so I went in a bit aggressive. Nice sleeves, Sammy boy. Good sexy lighting too.

4. George – National Sales

No frills. ‘I’m a banana.’ Nailed it.

No frills. ‘I’m a banana.’ Nailed it.

3. Katarzyna – National Sales

Katarzyna’s really raised the bar in this one. Although from a distance she looks like a Dragon Ball Z character.

Katarzyna’s really raised the bar in this one. Although from a distance she looks like a Dragon Ball Z character.

2. Rob – Revenue Manager

Rob bet Domi the sub editor she couldn’t get 100 signatures for him to wear the costume to work for a month...

Rob bet Domi the sub editor she couldn’t get 100 signatures for him to wear the costume to work for a month…

…She got 130. Unfortunately, he’s been in jeans and a polo ever since, which makes him a coward and a liar. Still, we won’t let his character affect our judgement on the costume competition.

1. Shey – Senior Test Lead

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Magnificent threads!

The way the shirt blends seamlessly into the light-toned khakis, the quaint tip of the hat, the assertive but not-too-assertive tilt of the hips denotes a proper gent. He’s got a 60s spy thing going on here, which is fitting because I’m not all that convinced he’s not one. Only one thing’s for certain, he’s the winner of the Wowcher Summer Party Best Costume Award 2016.

With the taps dry, the bar rinsed and the sun dawning, the party came to a close. We had a great time this year, and wish a special thanks to everyone who made it happen. We also hope you enjoyed our blog. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to recover in time for the Christmas one.