Thursday, February 5, 2009

SiteCrafting Socializing

Part of what I love about my job is the opportunity to visit technology companies in and around the South Sound, as well as the state. One day I might visit out to Pacific Northwest National Labs (PNNL), another day a field trip to Microsoft or Intel Dupont.

But what I truly enjoy is meeting up with the downtown folks like Sagem Morpho, Topia, AvueTech and, as I did yesterday, SiteCrafting.

Kevin Freitas sent out a an invite to the "SiteCrafting Interact" event via Facebook and I RSVP'd through the social network. There are several reasons I wanted to go. The last two times I visited SiteCrafting was when they were off of 711 St.Helens, then at their location near Fireman's Park. They continued to grow and I wanted to see the new digs (which were not really new, just new to me). A second reason was that I currently am faculty sponsor for a CSS student working at the company who is getting course credit for Directed Reading materials pertinent to one of his projects. I also was interested in their Interact format and wanted to check out some of their recent work. The bonus of course was the good company of others who decided to attend the late afternoon event.

The interact format for SiteCrafting is a once a month event, and the Feb 4th gathering was their third month. In an earlier format, they offered brown bad seminars and invited the public in a noontime setting. The new format offers employees a chance to have a little celebration of their work alongside some of the clients they provided the work, as well as mingle with members of the community.

It was a good mix of people and from the looks of things ran around a fifty/fifty to sixty/forty mix of non employees to employees. Monitors showcasing the recent work and food and beverages were laid out nicely in several stations with an excellent selection of finger foods and drinks. That may have been in part because one of the showcased sites was for South Sound Eats, which provided some wine samples and no doubt influenced some of the selections. Kris Blondin, South Sound Eats Sales and Marketing Director and former owner of Vin Grotto was there along with the web sites twin bloggers, Denise LaCaille and Melissa LaCaille. New sites for Primo Grill and CrownBar were also on view.

President for Sitecrafting, Brian Forth was an excellent host and was obviously proud of the company and its employees. This website design and application company continues to grow and has even started to push its current digs for space. Where other companies might be cutting back, they are in the process of adding one more to their team.

As slides in the back theater room changed from one site to another, music selections were provided up front by members of the company. Add to the mix conversation and catching up with Jessica Corey-Butler, always a kick, and former student, current tech consultant Andrew Becherer and the event was quite enjoyable.

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