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SWAlapalooza, as Told by Interns

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SWAlapalooza.jpg“Deck parties” are about as indicative of Southwest’s Culture as it gets. This weekly, Monday evening get-together is hosted by a different department at is held at Southwest's Headquarters in Dallas. Deck parties are an opportunity to hang out with Cohearts after work, listen to music, and enjoy free food and beverages. The parties are themed and include a variety of attractions—ranging from Vegas DJs to bounce houses.


When the Campus Reach Team asked the Summer 2017 Interns to plan an Intern-led deck party, I was skeptical about whether or not a crew of college students could pull off such a huge event. After all, there are usually between 250-500 Employees in attendance on any given Monday night.


However, after serving on the inaugural Intern Deck Party Team, I can say I was pleasantly surprised. Not only can Interns do it, but they do it with a passion for party-planning that only college kids could muster.


In keeping with the summer months’ barrage of music festivals, we decided to name our deck party SWAlapalooza. We littered the BBQ area with white paper lanterns and streamers, and catered Fuzzy’s Nachos and pizzas from Social Pie (because does it get more “college” than nachos and pizza?). We hired a local band named Blue Appollo, featured our very own Intern DJ, and—perhaps the main attraction—set up a “Pie Your Intern” station. Our door prizes included two tickets to the upcoming John Mayer concert (to keep in line with the music festival theme) and, for the less musically inclined, an Apple Watch.


The party was a huge success, and a good time was had by all—even those who took a pie tin of whipped cream to the face.


On behalf of the first Intern Deck Party Core Committee, we want to thank the People and Culture Services Departments. They helped make this event possible and led us every step of the way. We would also like to thank our sponsors, who donated thousands of dollars’ worth of product to the cause so we could stay under budget:

  • Favorite Brands, who provided 888 beers and 90 bottles of wine
  • Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, who provided enough chips and queso for 250 people
  • Social Pie Pizza, who provided enough pizza for 500 people
  • Hertz Car Rentals, who provided 30 free rental car vouchers


Here’s to many more Intern-led Deck Parties!


SWAlapalooza 2.jpg


 This post was written by interns Katie Gatti and Kaley Obrien.