When you join Yelp, an online community for reviewing restaurants, banks, movie theaters, etc. you gain Yelp Elite status for checking in, and reviewing on a regular basis. Yelp Elite members also get invites to attend live events at various venues around the city, in which you are a Yelper. The beauty of Yelp is people are able to have new experiences they may previously not have known about. Through Yelp, one gets to meet new friends and establish relationships not normally found on other social media websites. Sometimes the community manager sets up the events, or the venues contact Yelp to host an event to boost their marketing efforts. One such event was paint night at Pinot’s Palette.
Established in 2009, in Houston, TX, by Craig Ceccanti and Charles and Beth Willis, Pinot’s Palette is a place where individuals can sign up for a painting class and tap into their inner Van Gogh, to create paintings fit for a gallery opening. To get started, the community manager chose a simple painting from the calendar of events on the Pinot’s Palette website. The particular painting chosen for this event was from their free selections called Cypress Creek. If you want to paint something more complex, there is a charge of $35 or $45, depending on the painting. In addition to teaching the world to paint, Pinot’s Palette gives back to the community as well. In August of 2013, Pinot’s Palette held a charity event called Art Tasting (PRNewswire). The event featured wine and food tastings, silent and live art auctions, live street painting, and the opportunity to shop.
Upon arrival at Pinot’s Palette, instructor Cara Calvert-Thomas greeted Yelper’s. She directed everyone to pick a spot where a blank canvas was waiting. Along with the canvas were two brushes, large and small, and a paper plate with vibrant acrylic paints waiting to be mixed into different hues. We were then instructed to the location of the restroom, aprons, and where to place our belongings until the evenings end. Pinot’s Palette is a bring-your-own beverage and snack facility, but some locations do have a bar. They provide glasses and corkscrews along with plenty of paper towels and napkins to wipe up any paint, or wine spills.
Once everyone found a spot, the attendees were guided as to which paint brush to use first. We were then directed to scoop tiny amounts of the blue, black and white paint to begin creating the background of the piece. While listening to Cara’s detailed instructions, there was mood music playing in the background as participants began to paint their masterpieces. Some people seemed to enjoy the event more than others, as evidenced by Yelper, Rosy Hao, who painted her face in addition to the canvas. Breaks were given to allow each layer of paint to dry properly before adding additional layers. During the breaks, students mingled and refreshed their wine glasses. As the evening continued, among quiet conversation and mixing colors, the paintings began to emerge layer by layer.
Booking An Event
The paintings are found on Pinot’s Palette event calendar. Cara says, “Some paintings are more popular than others and sometimes people make special request which we are happy to oblige if possible.” People can sign up as individuals or as a group with a deposit. Cara says, “Pinot’s Palette is great for any occasion and we try to honor any special seating request.” For further information and sign up, please visit Pinot’s Palette’s website to find a location near you. If you aren’t a member of Yelp, you may sign up at http://www.yelp.com.
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