Meet BlueCart

Ah, BlueCart. BlueCart + Pelonkey. A friendship lovechild of the magical fairyland that is SXSW via Nicole & Andrew’s chance meeting. Two chatty folks who, well, chatted until they were the best of startup friends. They realized there are a lot of ways we could cross-market, and so this blog feature was born. Ok, some other stuff happened in there, too, because both companies are mega-busy, but you get the idea.

BlueCart & Pelonkey swapped Q’s, and below are one half of the A’s. A cool group of people with a cool mission. I’ll let them tell you what they do.vendor2.0What is BlueCart?

BlueCart is a communication platform for the hospitality industry. Our app streamlines the ordering process between restaurants and their suppliers so that a restaurant can place orders to all their different vendors (produce, meat, alcohol, seafood, linens, etc.) in just one click. Suppliers then get those orders automatically organized on the other side, and everyone sees the whole thing go down in real time. It’s a huge leap forward from managing orders via text messages, emails, and phone calls, and best of all, it’s free.

How long have you been around?

BlueCart first launched in July 2014.

How big is your team?

We’re 27 stunning colleagues strong.

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Who can benefit from signing up with you?

Really anyone who handles orders in the hospitality industry and has access to a computer or smartphone can use BlueCart. That’s the beautiful thing about the app, it’s incredibly simple and easy to get the hang of. Anyone from huge restaurant groups in NYC to a small farmer in Kansas can use BlueCart to simplify their ordering. We believe that everyone in this industry, no matter how big or small, should have access to technology that makes their lives easier by making their business run more smoothly. [Us, too!]

What makes you unique?

Hmm. There are many things that make us unique. One of the ways we’re unique is our approach to customer service. Literally everyone is a customer service rep at BlueCart. We make quarterly calls to all our clients to gain feedback and see if we can help with any problems. We’re still young and agile enough that we can make changes to the app based on the feedback we get. Everyone makes those calls, too, from our CEO to our interns. [Hearing from an actual person makes a big difference. Especially when that person is the CEO? Talk about quality assurance.]

If we were to walk in to the BlueCart HQ/office what are the first three things we would notice?

Hmm, that’s a great question. If you would have asked me a month ago, I would have said the ping pong table. But that’s a little cliché for a startup, and honestly we had to get rid of ours anyway because we are growing so quickly. So, to answer your question, one of the first things you would see is the coatrack where a fake wolf’s head sits on top of a hoodie that hasn’t left since Christian wore it for Halloween. After the big bad wolf, you would most likely see a portrait of Chester (a photo of a squirrel dressed up in a turtleneck), which for no reason at all is on our award shelf – and next to that, either because of or in spite of Chester, depending on your perspective, is our award for coolest DC company. [Definitely because of. Can we get a copy?]

Where are you located?

We started in D.C., and now have permanent offices in San Francisco and NYC, with staff in Austin.

What events do you have coming up?

We’re actually hosting an event on menu engineering and how to get the most profits out of your menu in early June. We have the master of menu design, Gregg Rapp, coming to share his tips on crafting a menu. He’s worked with some high-level, diverse clients like IHOP and the Kennedy Center. So, if you know anyone in the bay area that might be interested, let them know. It’s on June 6th and you can get tickets here. [It’s not too late!]

How can BlueCart help the events industry?

BlueCart can help in two ways. First, with logistics. BlueCart allows hotels hosting an event to order all their supplies including linens, silverware, and food all in one place. It’s kind of a one stop shop, but for ordering. Second, we can recommend some fantastic entertainment folks, like Pelonkey…

Food suppliers, food buyers, go check ’em out! With an easy-to-use interface and FREE access, why wouldn’t you want to take a gander?

We heart you, BlueCart.

 

Prequel aka “Pretty Cool”…see what I did there?

Last week Prequel DC had their launch party c/o RJ Whyte Event Production, and let me be (definitely not the first and absolutely not the last) one to say Holy Guacamole, Batman! That place looked awesome-sauce.

Three floors, each with a different theme and decor, scattered with 11, yes 11, talented entertainers from our site.

I’ll let the photos do the talking (a picture says a thousand words, after all), but before we even get to the magnificent visuals, let’s chat about the man who took them: Alexander Morozov. He also took our launch party photos, and he always captures the magic of the event! He manages to get the best expressions, candid conversations, and elegant setups.

Check out Alexander’s full album here.

A big thanks to all the entertainers who helped make the Prequel Launch shine!

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Anna Pineapple – Human Statue | Second Floor

Jessie Campbell – Makeup Artist (she brought a lipstick bar!) | First Floor

DJ Wizdom | Second Floor

Rajan – Live Artist (he painted the huge canvas in under two hours!) | Second Floor

DJ Alkimist | Fourth Floor

DJ Civil | Second Floor, Roaming

DJ Sean J | First Floor

DJ Foster | Second & Fourth Floor, Roaming

Alexander Morozov – Photographer | Roaming

DJ Neekola | First Floor

Max Major – Mentalist | Roaming

Show these peeps some love, and book them for your next event! They can all be found on Pelonkey.com along with a slew of other serious talented groups and individuals.

We’re proud Mama Bears over here, always wanting to show off our Pelonkey users…can you blame us?

WeDC 2016 SXSW Kickoff

WeDC has this great way of making everyone at their events feel like one of the gang. I mean, hello, it is We DC after all! We the people… Well, another WeDC event later, and we are just as obsessed with these guys!

The SXSW kickoff was a blast, and we brought DJ Duffin, DJ Civil, and DJ Rene to rock the house as the guests mingled, networked, and checked out the startup tables (um, ours was the best, le duh).

 

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Notice the company you see wherever you look? 😉

DJ Duffin kicked off the night with a fun mix of music to pump up the arriving guests. From high above the evening’s Pelonkey perch, he had the best vantage of anyone there!

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We met a ton of great people, exchanged more than a few business cards, and let’s be honest, did what Pelonkey does best: told people what we’re all about, and probably cracked a few bad jokes as well 😉

Prior to Black Alley, the band for the evening, taking the stage, DJ Civil had us grooving to some R&B, some throwbacks, and like the rockstar she is, she made WeDC’s recap collage, so for your viewing pleasure… (Bottom red tee haaaaay girl!) –>

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And after Black Alley finished up, it was DJ Rene with the closeout. Another rockstar, I tell ya. But, really, when you come to Pelonkey, it’s rockstars left and right. The talent we’ve got on our side are serious performers. In case you didn’t already know based on the amount of bragging we like to do about them.

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Great day for the PelonkTeam, and anytime we’re able to hang with WeDC it’s a great day overall.

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Rene, Ciera, Nicole, Danielle, Duffin, Civil

Until next time, WeDC!

So… the rest of y’all ready to get this SXSW wagon on the road to Austin?? We sure are!

O City Perch, how we love thee

“For more than a year now, Pelonkey DJs have been exclusively supplying the soundtrack to City Perch brunches and nighttime parties!” –> Nicole, giirllllll, those words are music to my ears!

You heard right – in the past year, if you’ve eaten at City Perch before catching a weekend movie, you’ve been grooving in your seats to one of Pelonkey’s fantastic DJs. Of the 26 (and counting) entertainers who have rocked the City Perch house so far, we’ve rounded up a number of them to weigh in on the Pelonkey-CP love affair.

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DJ Civil: “I’ve had the pleasure of entertaining patrons and staff at this great establishment since August 2015. The experience has been beyond what I ever expected. First, at the bar area, it’s always nice to see heads nodding and feet tapping. Second, the restaurant is a beauty. Third, and most important, City Perch has a selection of food on its menu that competes with no one in the area.

I recently DJ’d City Perch for Brunch Super Bowl Sunday. Of all the great times I’ve had at City Perch, I’d say the ‘whispered rap battle’ to the beat of Ed Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’ is the best so far! The staff and managers always show how much they enjoy my tune selection. And if it wasn’t for Pelonkey, this new experience would have never happened.”

DJ RAW: “Fantastic food with great presentation from the staff. Great servers. The outdoor area with the fire places lit at night and the outdoor lighting are perfect for the spring, fall and early winter. The space has a ginormous back dining area. It is a hidden gem in Rockville-Bethesda area. When the area is completed you will have to wait in line for a table. Perfect for a dinner before a movie and cocktail afterwards.”

Trayze: “Spinning tunes at City Perch is always a good time!  I have fun setting the vibe at the balcony and getting people in the mood to dance at their tables or at the bar. Booking through Pelonkey is always a breeze. From contracting to payment, it’s always smooth!”

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DJ Dirty Hands: “I’ve been playing here for a few months now, and I love the people that come here. Everyone is surprised that [the DJs] are mixing live. Raasikh [General Manager] is the man!”

LJ MTX: “It was my pleasure to help City Perch kick off 2016 as their DJ. The management and staff were super accommodating from the time I walked through the door. The venue is beautiful and food is amazing. I highly recommend this spot if you are looking for a nice low key night of great food, drinks, and music.”

DJ Dimmy: “DJing at City Perch is always a treat. The staff is great, and the clientele is fun.  Thanks to Pelonkey, the booking process is smooth and flawless.”

DJ Bo: “City Perch continues to be one of my favorite places to DJ because I’m trusted to play a vast amount of music I do not get to play at most bars. The lagers are to die for, and I can’t get enough of the crab cakes. The staff is always awesome, and I look forward to seeing them again in a couple weeks.”

DJ Sean J: “City Perch is one of those great places that DJs love: A cool vibe that allows you freedom to play really cool music along with great food! The Brioche Crusted Maryland Blue Crab Cakes are amazing! For me, playing the music is all about creating the right atmosphere wherever I play. The look and feel of City Perch compliments a lot of the music that I listen to and often don’t get a chance to play out!”

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Gavin Holland: “I love DJing at City perch! There’s a vibrant bar scene, and the build-out of the whole place is really organic and inviting. Musically, I strike that balance between hooks people know and beats that are futuristic and warm. It was a high compliment the other week when someone came up to me and said, ‘I didn’t think I would hear this tonight!’ That’s always the goal. — And it’s great booking through Pelonkey; everyone’s on the same page as far as expectations and payment. By the time I get home, I have an email from Pelonkey letting me know the event is complete, and within a few days, my fee is deposited directly into my bank account. No need to annoy a manager at the end of the night for a check she’s trying to close up shop!”

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DJ Oz: “City Perch is a lot of fun. I get to play a wide array of music and the partons really enjoy it. I think it enhances their experience at the restaurant.”  

DJ CYD: “City Perch has a great staff and amazing food. It’s a very diverse group of people  from youthful business professionals to wholesome families.”

As-One: “City Perch is a must visit for those in Montgomery County. Great vibes within a gorgeous setting, friendly staff, and delicious menu. I always have a blast DJing there!”

DJ Neekola: “City Perch has been a most wonderful event planner to work with, taking very good care of our DJs, with patrons bouncing up and down while enjoying their meals before peeping a movie in fancy chairs… We love having them on Pelonkey!”

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DJ Alkimist: “I love spinning at City Perch; it’s a place with a cool vibe with even cooler people.”

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We think our entertainers did a pretty sick job of showing how much we LUV this venue…

City Perch, y’all deserve a huge THANK YOU and a full house from now until 2025. Talented DJs, you guys deserve all the success, dancing, and future bookings in the world. Readers, let’s get on that, yeah?

#Celebrate2015

Yes, we are hashtag whores. Yes, we hashed all over #Vegas. Yes, you can filter through the Tech.Co #Celebrate2015 tag and find our (dare I say witty?) commentary. And yes, you should go and do that #rightmeow.

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#Celebrate2015 was Tech.Co’s global conference for tech startups, which took place this past Sunday-Tuesday in Vegassss, baby! It was three packed days of networking, panels, meetings, (yes, some #parties), one-on-ones, mentors, new faces, and new friends. It also included a startup showcase, of which Pelonkey was a part last year. We didn’t win, but because the conference was gads of fun, this year Nicole and Danielle returned to network, strengthen connections, and of course, visit Vegas. (Though, with two red eyes in as many days, it’s not quite the same as it would have been with time to recharge to 100%.)

After the launch party and our first month post-site launch, our focus on managing the company shifts every day as we explore new aspects of outreach, marketing, partnerships, and more, and the conference was great in aiding our efforts to tackle these frontiers. The people we met were awesomesauce, and the business cards we got are spilling out of our purses in anticipation of follow-up emails.

We flew in to Vegas late Sunday night, so we missed the first day’s activities, but here’s what our schedule looked like:

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See? Busy. Monday and Tuesday were no joke. Neither are my 24 pages of notes that are begging to be organized and prioritized, but I digress.

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Frank Gruber, Co-Founder and CEO of Tech.Co

Nicole and Danielle split up in order to meet with more people and cover more ground. Monday’s highlights were a mix of some panels and great individual sit-downs. Tuesday was comprised of valuable lectures and some heavy duty speakers (Microsoft, Google, American Airlines, Yahoo News, and more were in attendance).

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Danielle heard from Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappo’s, a panel discussing partnerships, Susan Cooney and Stacy Parson, who led a workshop on Next Level Results from startup teams and how they can grow their business through leadership (one of my favs, and a class every young professional should take to teach them about owning their leadership potential), and Clarisa Lindenmeyer from Tech Wildcatters, among others. Nicole met with Gerome Sapp, NFL player turned tech master, Jermaine Dupri, record producer and founder of So So Def, and heard a lecture about investor meetings.

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They both listened to talks by Danielle Morrill from Mattermark, who discussed the business of collecting and organizing the world’s data, and Lauren Fritsch from TCC Consulting, who blew their minds with her Customer Experience talk (right up Pelonkey’s alley!).

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We took a little time to walk around Downtown, but did not make it to the strip (though Nicole did try unsuccessfully to get Danielle to go out with her). Instead we opted for Tech.Co parties and networking (a worthy choice).

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After a Pelonkey brainstorm (read: brain dump), final speakers, and startup awards ceremony (shoutout to Blendoor!), the conference wrapped up with a closing rooftop party and a visit from Kuzco, the Tech.Co alpaca, which, naturally, was our favorite part.

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And then it was back to the airport for red eye #2! And straight to meetings after that. #Tech stops for no one.

#Celebrate2015, you were fantastic! Let’s do this again sometime. Say, 2016 perhaps?

MES: Most Extraordinary Stars? Or…

MES: Many Excellent Successes. MES: Master Entrepreneur Supporters. (<– Hey, that was actually a pretty good one.)

MES: Metro Event Specialists, aka our homedawgs. Our peeps. A real swell group of hardworking event tycoons.

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We have introduced you to lots of heavy hitters in the events world (shoutout to our ab-FAB Pelonkey Launch sponsors!), but there’s one group we want to throw in the spotlight for a hot minute. MES holds a special place in our hearts as our good friends Max Major & Troy Francis are the ones that run it, and our CEO Nicole is on the board. Max & Troy and the rest of the MES gang have a finger on many crucial events that take place in DC, and they have been nice enough to toss us countless tips, tricks, and advice on our path to entertainment marketplace stardom (that’s a thing, right?).

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You’ve already heard a little about them through our MES Mixer coverage (we sponsored all the entertainment at their August mixer at the National Archives), but we want to urge all of you in the events industry to take a closer look. Get involved with them. They are a network of event professionals in the DMV area. They are 100% free (um, yes, really), AND they host super fun events with food and drink and talking and laughing and mixing and photo booths and fun and, well, now I’m just rambling.

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They were well-represented at our launch party, and we wanna throw ’em some love. Some mushy, mushy event lurrvvve. They are such a force in the area, and we are glad to call them partners. Get on their list, and don’t miss their next event! No, don’t miss it. Don’t do it. Don’t make us come over there…

Pelonkey is in Washington Life Magazine!

Have you checked out Washington Life Magazine‘s latest November issue? A write-up was done at our amazing tech startup incubator, 1776, and the Pelonkey sisters are featured!

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Check out the article online here!

Our DJs really know how to make Heist pop!

Last month, a few of our incredible DC DJs stole the scene at Heist in DuPont!

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As one of Pelonkey‘s partner venues in DC, Heist is one of the most unique nightclubs in the city. It has a fun bank robbery scene (hence the name!) and all gold embellished decor. Including Dirty Hands and Neekola, the music was bumping! One of our other partners, the Beat Refinery, had their main lady DJ Alkimist pop in to party as well! Selfie time!

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All around another amazing night at Heist for their Industry Tuesdays. Catch you there next time!