Kendra’s Queso Recipe

I think it’s safe to say that the queso at our TFEA happy hour was a hit!  Several people have asked for the recipe, so here you go!

Kendra’s Queso

  • 2 lb. (32 oz.) VELVEETA®, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 lb. cooked sausage
  • 2 cans ROTEL®
    • 1 Cilantro/Lime
    • 1 Regular
  • 2 packages (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA® Cream Cheese

Combine all ingredients into a slow cooker and heat until it’s all melted together, stirring occasionally.  Enjoy with your favorite tortilla chips!

2012 Saffire Boot Koozie Debut

Since our Saffire boot koozies have been such a hit every where we’ve gone, we decided to get a new color this year and every year from now on!  We went to visit our partners at American Royal last week, so they were the first to receive the 2012 edition of the koozies. 

And we just can’t get over how cute they look on these little feet!  Thanks for sharing this adorable picture Jody.

Rodeo Austin: Where Weird Meets Western

It is always a highlight for our team when we get to go see one of our events in action, and this Wednesday we drove across town to visit our very first Saffire client, Rodeo Austin!

First, we got to go on a tour of their newly remodeled office and the fairgrounds.  Our tour guides were wonderful and we enjoyed learning even more about their event.

Next, we enjoyed a yummy dinner in the Founders Club.  If you ever have the chance to enjoy dinner there, we highly recommend the friend pickles and homemade peach cobbler.

We headed down to our seats and watched an exciting rodeo.  As a former intern at Rodeo Austin, Cassie got to see a lot of her old friends, including the one and only Rusty Rodeo!

But we would lying if we said that most of our excitement came from getting to see Josh Turner in concert!  He is definitely a favorite around the Austin office, so we sang along to every song he played.

After the rodeo and concert, we headed over to spend some time at the 100X club for drinks and dancing.  We enjoyed some live music from Clayton Gardner before we left the grounds.

Overall, it was a fantastic experience and we can’t thank the staff at Rodeo Austin enough for their hospitality.  We are proud to be your partner!

Our trip to the Big Show: Rodeo Houston

As rodeo season got into full swing, the Austin office realized that we all had one thing missing in our lives: none of us had ever been to the Houston Rodeo.

Kendra quickly took matters into her own hands and bought tickets for us to take a little field trip down to Houston, and it was quite a fun evening!

Once we arrived, Kendra, Jessica and Rebekah wanted to take a walk around the grounds, but Cassie headed straight for the arena so she wouldn’t miss a second of the action.  She even got to see her childhood friend Kay, whose husband is Pro-Bareback Rider Steven Dent.

We were happy to be a part of the crowd of 76,987 that attended the rodeo on Thursday night as we enjoyed a night filled with fried food and cold beer.

I think I can speak for the whole team when I say that the highlight of the night was Lady Antebellum!  They played a great set and really had the crowd going.

(Photo courtesy of Houston Radio Station KHMX)

The next morning, we couldn’t help but notice the cutest cupcake shop on our way out of town.  We decided to make a quick stop at Crave Cupcakes to get a treat from their rodeo inspired selection for the ride home.  It was a great decision!

The Austin office had a great experience at Rodeo Houston, and we hope to make it back next year.  We wish their team the best of luck on the last few days of their 2012 event.

Our World Famous Cotton Candy Cocktail

When we decided to host a happy hour at the IAFE Convention in Las Vegas, we knew one thing was a must: a cotton candy cocktail.  After a quick search online, we realized there were hundreds of recipes, so the only solution was to have a cotton candy cocktail tasting.

Each of the team members in the Austin office found a recipe that sounded delicious, and we got together for dinner and a tasting one evening after work.

Several rounds of very pink cocktails later, we took a little bit of this recipe and a little bit of that recipe to create the cocktail you’ve all come to love.

At our parties at IAFE and TAF&E, we had several requests for our recipe, so here it is!  Please watch this video as our resident bartender, Jessica, teaches you how to make your very own cotton candy cocktail.


One part Pinnacle Cotton Candy Vodka
One part cranberry juice cocktail
A splash of orange juice
A large poof of cotton candy

And remember to upload photos of your staff enjoying a cotton candy cocktail to our Facebook wall.  The best photo will win a cotton candy machine, so be creative!

San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo: More Than an 8 Second Ride

Hi readers, Cassie here. As per the norm when I jump on the blog, it’s because I can’t wait to tell you about my latest rodeo adventure. Last weekend I had the opportunity to go to the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo for the first time.

If you’re not familiar, the San Antonio Rodeo is one of the most prestigious in the business. About 1.3 million people visit the grounds every year, and the show has won PRCA’s “Large Indoor Rodeo of the Year” for the last seven years. After having the chance to go myself, I can see the reasons why…the show was fantastic!

From the first laser beam in the opening scene to beautiful livestock and rugged cowboys, this was all around one of the best rodeos I’ve ever attended.  Then, to top it all off, Keith Urban played a great set that really had the crowd on their feet.

The show was great, but I think what makes San Antonio’s show stand above the rest is something outside of the rodeo arena. After speaking with the locals, everyone from San Antonio goes to the rodeo because it’s the just the right thing to do. It seems like everyone I talked to had a personal tie to the event in some way, including several that proudly compete in the barbeque cook off.

One local vendor told me he’s been working the event for years and people specifically seek out his booth from year to year. Everyone seemed to have a story or a personal tie, and the San Antonio Rodeo is built around the community.

While we may not all be the size of San Antonio, we all can create what they have in some form or fashion. Think about what is important to your community and incorporate those elements into your event. Give people a niche and a place to feel at home. Then, your attendees will begin to feel invested in your event.

I would like to say a big THANK YOU to our friends at the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo. You showed me an example of southern rodeo hospitality that I will not soon forget. Can’t wait for next year!

Louisiana Association of Fairs and Festivals Convention 2012

We were happy to be invited to attend the Louisiana Association of Fairs and Festivals Convention in Baton Rouge, LA over the weekend.  And one thing is safe to say: Louisiana folks know how to party!

It was great to see a few old friends from IAFE and make lots of new connections in the industry.

Kendra presented on “The Latest and Greatest in Online Marketing.” We may have drawn the short straw, as our time slot was at the same time as the evening gown competition of the Queen of Queens Pageant. But I mean really, who can compete with all of this!

All jokes aside, we had a great conversation and hope that we provided some fresh, new insight to the industry. Thanks again to all of the attendees who took time out of their busy day to listen to our presentation.

And a big thank you to the LAFF for their hospitality. We were glad to be a part of the weekend’s festivities!

IAFE 2011: Eat, Drink and Be Merry!

Since thousands of miles separate the Austin and Portland Saffire Offices, any chance our team has to spend time together is sure to be filled with excitement and fun.

With such a busy convention schedule, most of our free time was spent having yummy meals and playing various casinos.

While we didn’t hit the BIG jackpot we were all hoping for, we settled for a few mediocre slot machine wins on Top Dollar and Lucky Larry’s Lobster Mania.

If you know much about this team, you know we might be are  foodies.  We had the opportunity to eat at some new finds and old favorites while we were in Las Vegas.

We made two stops at the new Cosmopolitan Hotel, which was right across from the Paris Hotel where we were staying.  This trendy, new hotel was home to Holsteins and D.O.C.G.  At Holsteins, we enjoyed the Gold Standard, which was voted the best burger in Las Vegas, and various “Bam-Boozled Shakes.”  As for D.O.C.G., well we’re just glad we didn’t set more than the menu on fire.  Oops! 

After about 24 hours away from Texas, the Austin office was in serious need of some Mexican food.  So we headed over to Planet Hollywood to have some burritos and fajitas at Yolo’s.

Since Wednesday night was our last evening together in Vegas, we had a team dinner at a Saffire favorite: Tao.  A few specialty cocktails and lots of toasts later, we had a delicious meal and enough laughs to last until we’re together again.

Our team really is a family, and it was great to spend time together in Sin City.  Viva Las Vegas!

– Rebekah

IAFE 2011: I Love This Bar… and Our Clients!

With so many of our clients attending the IAFE Conference in Las Vegas, the Saffire team decided to seize the opportunity and bring them all together for a group dinner on Monday evening at Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar and Grill.

Of course we had a little thank you gift for our clients!

We had such a fun time visiting and catching up with the teams from Brazos Valley Fair & Expo, Heart O’ Texas Fair & Rodeo, Western Fairs Association, and our newest client who signed on earlier that very day, but that’s a surprise.

Rebekah and Cassie with Liz and Carrie from WFA.

For many of us, it was our first time to meet each other in person and really put a face with a name.  It was also a great opportunity for our clients to get to know each other and share their own stories and experiences.

Some of the highlights of the meal included the fried mac and cheese balls, fried jalapeno poppers, chicken fried steak and fried Twinkies for dessert.  Are you noticing the trend?  

Fried Twinkies = Yummy

We also enjoyed some live music and some very entertaining people watching.  Thank you to all who joined us for such a memorable evening! It was a joy to see and visit with you all!

– Jessica

Giving Thanks

Our team would like to wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving!

Just a friendly reminder that our offices will be closed tomorrow and Friday to spend time with our loved ones.

We have a lot to be grateful for this year, and we hope you’ll take a moment tomorrow to count your blessings.

So here’s to Thanksgiving!  May your day be filled with family, friends, food and football.