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Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) - Western Washington board, Dec. 2017

Holiday Scoop Raises More Than $1,200 for the Passion Project

Local journalists and their guests celebrated the end of an eventful year at the Holiday Scoop party on Dec. 12, 2017.

Holiday Scoop was co-hosted by SPJ Western Washington and AAJA Seattle at Machine House Brewery. Marination supplied the mouth-watering tacos. 

People from various backgrounds, publications and job experiences came to the event (babies included, at least until 9 p.m.).

The lively festivities included a photobooth and generously donated prints for the Northwest Photojournalism print swap, which reflected a broad range of interests and subjects. Whether sumo wrestlers, lions, rowing, or Seattle Seahawks athletes, the Northwest Photojournalism print swap was as eclectic as ever. Select photos even came with souvenirs, such as confetti from the game featured in the photograph.

Grace Madigan and Hannah Myrick, two journalism students at the University of Washington, were a part of the crowd. Multiple journalism professors from the University of Washington were also present.

Madigan said she first heard about the event from one of her professors this quarter, Caley Cook.

“She encouraged us to come and promised to buy us a drink and that there would be tacos,” Madigan said. “That sounded good to me.”

“I’m not 21, but I heard I would get a firm handshake if I came…and free tacos,” Myrick said.

Madigan confirmed that Cook was true to her word and said people should believe her if she makes a similar promise in the future.

I am also a journalism student at the University of Washington and heard the same announcement (and promise) from Cook.

Besides beer and tacos, students like Madigan and Myrick came to meet other professional journalists.

Madigan said networking events tended to be awkward, trying to talk to people you don’t know, but said that the Holiday Scoop party was a nice environment with less pressure to perform. Myrick said everyone was friendly.

“It’s a good place to start if you don’t know what you’re doing,” Myrick said.

The silent auction occurred during the first two hours of the night, which allowed guests to wander, gander and sometimes outbid others in a friendly game of who can donate more.

At the end of the evening, no photos were left behind. The auction started at $20 per photo, with the explanation that all profits would help fund the Passion Project. The Passion Project awards grants to visual journalists to pursue documentary-style projects that they initiated.

Thanks to everyone who attended the Dec. 12, 2017 event, Holiday Scoop raised a total of $1,217 for the Passion Project.

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