The Soul of Seoul | Operation High Jinks Recap
This past weekend I hosted an AMAZINGLY fun event called “Operation High Jinks”.
A bit Amazing Race missions, a bit Running Man hysterics and a bit scavenger hunt clues, it was a race planned to introduce attendees to Korea of today in a fun way. Not only did teams get to meet local Koreans and cook Kimchi jeon (Kimchi pancakes), they got to meet a local photographer and get a photo, meet some local expat entrepreneurs and more.
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Finding things unique to Korea like dressed up/dyed dogs, the Korean flag, the iconic Han River and so on was what this was about.
Teams would also be racing to win some awesome prizes from local businesses. Create Wellness, a team of holistic healthcare experts located in Itaewon, gave away some massages and what team wouldn’t want to win that after a three hour race? The team that won those also won some tickets to the fun Aqua Planet Ilsan, an awesome aquarium, petting zoo and more rolled into one. It was the perfect prize for the team that was made up of parents and children. I’m pretty sure everyone in the family will get something out of that prize!
Another team grabbed some tickets to a free music cruise on the Han River provided by ELand Cruise, a company that offers a great opportunity to see Seoul from the fast flowing Han River in the center. Before they head out to the cruise, they can eat it up at Buttermilk Biscuit Co., a new local eatery getting a ton of hype for their great biscuits and get some food delivered right to their house from Sprout, a healthy alternative for people on the go, One of my favorite parts about hosting this event is looking back through the pictures of the teams when all is said and done. During the event, I, along with some volunteers, get the photos of the teams in real time so that we can calculate points. The pictures are flying in as teams are checking clues off of their lists and afterward, I go back in to see how everyone did.
The fun was palpable and the teams were amazing!
The event this year was a bit different from last year as I wanted to focus on some of the local entrepreneurs and vendors, expat and Korean alike. The first mission stop had teams meeting up with the duo behind Ginseng&Tonic, a new site dedicated to women’s health and lifestyle here in Korea. Next up, teams raced to Osaekomi, a local Korean owned shop that prepares and sells Korean side dishes. At this location, teams had to cook up their own kimchi pancake and then eat it up. After enjoying a little snack, teams headed to Fromella, a great stop where a local photographer met teams and had them pose for their own head shots. Allen, the photographer, is great to work with and all of the teams seemed to enjoy this stop. Check him out if you need to get some photos for anything from portraits to events.
Teams also raced over to the Trickeye Museum in Hongdae to experience their new augmented reality. Later a team even won more tickets to go back to the popular spot in the bustling neighborhood to really have fun with the new backgrounds. Fromella and Osaekomi are connections I made through the owners and operators over at Playplanet an awesome platform that connects tourists with locals for unique experiences. Teams also had taste test some of my favorite dish from Mogo, a site that sends all of the ingredients to make a great meal to your home so you can whip it up yourself. It’s awesome and I HIGHLY recommend the Cincinnati spaghetti.
After racing around World Cup Park, the Mangwon Traditional Market over to Hongdae and then down to Hapjeong and Sangsu, the after party culminated in Vineworks, a wine tasting venue that is perfect for all of your intimate party needs. Teams mingled and jingled with one another as we made sure the points worked out and then we announced the winners.
If my pictures don’t do the event justice, also check out my friend Arielle’s video from her site Soju4Two. She along with Mika from The Seoul Child, were amazing enough to help me out for this spectacularly fun event that over 70 people attended!
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Having 70 people in Vineworks, was a bit of a tight squeeze, but we all made it work. There was a BBQ on the rooftop, tables and chairs on the two floors below and loads of people in good spirits after racing around meeting locals and working together to accomplish the tasks set before them.
Local vendors like The Baker’s Table, Casablanca and the newly opened Morococo provided some great vouchers to winners to head out and eat up their great treats soon and Spoon Me and Shuttle worked together to provide vouchers for healthy eats that can be delivered right to your doorstep. All of these restaurant spots and services need to be checked out if you’ve not heard of them yet. Local and serving up delicious eats, great services and more.
Another group that I’ve been watching for awhile and was happy to have contribute was The Sool Company. The newly dubbed group educates on how to make makgeolli but they have even more cool projects in the works in their ever expanding company. It’s so amazing to see expats become locals making a name for themselves here in Korea. Check out what they’re doing because I’m sure you’ll want to get in on a class or event they’re working up. Last, but certainly not least, Fishisfast provided some fantastic vouchers for winners too. Fishisfast is an excellent mail forwarding service that has quickly grown in the middle east and is currently expanding in Korea. Offering superb service to get those goods from abroad to your door step quickly in Korea is what they’re about.
Teams raced hard and did a truly fantastic job of completing missions and figuring out clues. I am ecstatic that so many people came out and I hope everyone had a fantastic time. I know I did!