It’s been a while since we’ve done a culture post!
Our unique culture here at POLYWOOD is something we’re pretty proud of. We’re all familiar with working hard towards a common goal, but we also value a little downtime with our fellow co-workers. Whether we’re gathering for a company lunch, hosting a company-wide softball tournament, or raising money by dunking our leadership in a dunk tank, we know how to have fun.
Here’s a closer look at what we’ve been up to recently…
Fall Spirit Week
For the past few years, our office employees have organized what we call “Fall Spirit Week”.
It’s a week at the end of October where we go all-in on fall. This year, we hosted a pumpkin carving contest, a scavenger hunt, and a chili cook-off.
While our week of festivities is mostly fun and games, there’s a larger purpose behind-the-scenes. Each year we choose a local non-profit for which to raise money; each employee’s vote or participation entry cost goes towards that organization.
For 2017 we chose our local Kiwanis club — an organization whose mission is to serve children in our community. Kiwanis International believes that children are curious, lovable, and hilarious; they’re also wild, impatient, and vulnerable. Kiwanis looks out for kids in every corner of the globe with over 600,000 volunteers who serve their communities through local clubs.
Our local Wawasee Kiwanis specifically assists families with everything from providing food to utility bill assistance, donating resources to local preschools, leading community events, hosting soup suppers, fundraisers, and more! They’re a great group of people and we were thrilled to be a part of their mission this year.
First up in our “Fall Spirit Week” was our scavenger hunt around town. From the bowling alley to the library, to our local hot dog joint, six teams competed to win POLYWOOD furniture.
This year we convinced our HR Manager to wear a Go-Pro so we could get an insider’s view of his team traveling from place to place. Here are the highlights:
At the bowling alley, one person from each team had to bowl a strike (or get a spare) to move on to their next clue. One particular teammate got a spare on her first frame! If you look closely enough at the video above you’ll see a bit of Heather’s spare in action, it was amazing.
At one point during the hunt, teams also had to take a group selfie with whatever pumpkin they could find, then text it to get their next clue…so precious:
The first four teams to make it back to our headquarters had to complete one last challenge: be the first to assemble a piece of POLYWOOD furniture. Once assembled, the rocking chair was inspected for accuracy (all of the screws had to be tightened…something that often gets missed amongst all the hurriedness!).
Each member of the winning team got to take home one of our newest products (shh…it’ll be debuted on polywoodoutdoor.com in 2018).
Pumpkin Carving Contest
With an hour on the clock, teams were tasked with carving a unique design in their pumpkin. Each year the stakes seem to get higher (we’re a competitive group!) and this year we ended up with two team winners:
“Most Creative” team pumpkin
“Fan Favorite” team pumpkin
Like most, we’re a group who loves to eat. So of course, we had to include a potluck style cook-off where employees voted for their favorite dish in three different categories:
- “Best Traditional Chili”
- “Most Unique Chili”
- “Best Overall Chili”
At the end of the week, we totaled our donations, and with POLYWOOD’s match, we raised $676. Our donation will help provide food for 75 to 80 local families in need over the holidays.
Soon we’ll be on to the next fundraiser and adventure (maybe a Polar Plunge in Lake Wawasee?). And some of us are already thinking about next year’s scavenger hunt clues.
If you’d like to donate directly to Kiwanis International, check out their donation page. You can also donate your time by volunteering for your local chapter — check out which Kiwanis is closest to your neighborhood.
Big thanks to Wawasee Bowl, Coffee Depot, Oakwood Resort, Pat’s Chicago Dogs, Eastlake Athletic Club, and Syracuse Public Library for letting us invade their spaces during our Scavenger Hunt!
Blog Post Updated March 26, 2021