To say Halloween is a pretty big deal here at Southwest Airlines doesn’t really paint an accurate picture. It goes way beyond mere costumes and decorations. For one day out of the year, our headquarters essentially becomes an amusement park, filled with haunted houses, rides, and Broadway-style shows.
Departments plan for months and compete for the honors of best skit, scariest walk-through, and best family friendly attraction.
Two years ago, our Finance Department turned the second floor of our building into the Pirates of Caribbean ride, complete with rolling canoes, fog, and singing pirates – I swear, it was just like being at Disneyland. And, legend has it that a department even covered their entire floor with real grass one year.
Of course, our Employees eagerly await the reveal of our CEO Gary Kelly’s costume, who has dazzled in the past with his shockingly realistic renditions of Kiss’s Gene Simmons and Hairspray’s Edna Turnblad.
The whole spectacle is one of those things that you would have to see to believe, so each year we invite a few guests to peek behind the curtain and serve as our “Celebrity Judges.”
While Actor Luke Wilson is always a popular candidate for the job, this year, we’ve gone with a blog theme, and invited some of our favorite aviation bloggers to do the honors.
Joining us this year will be:
• Brett Snyder aka “the Cranky Flier” of CrankyFlier.com
• Grant Martin of Gadling.com
• Ellen Wernecke of Jaunted.com
Visit the site tomorrow morning to be among the first to see our CEO’s costume this year.
And, if you live in Dallas, join me, the Cranky Flier, and some of my Southwest family tonight at Club Schmitz near Love Field. We’ll be there at 5:30p, for burgers, beer, and blog talk.
Apparently, Cranky will be the one wearing the white Alitalia t-shirt!