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At Kathy Sweet's Venue, Nonprofits are Just 'because'

When Paradise Valley residents Kathy Sweet and her husband, Dave, set out to create an event venue, they faced challenges that allowed them to open what is now a thriving business with hefty philanthropic undertones.

"We started automätik, a training and events company in 1990. Through that business, we have hosted many events in a huge variety of spaces," Kathy says. "We encountered many obstacles when organizing and throwing these events. We wanted to open a space that brought the community together, was based on a give-back model, was customer-focused, had an incredible staff that is easy to work with and easy plug-and-play audio/visuals—and here we are—because Event Space was born!"

"because" (always lowercase) came from combining the phrase "beauty and events for a cause." It is a 15,000-square-foot space with multiple rooms and areas, including a 200-square-foot theater with a state-of-the-art 4K rear-projection system, an outdoor lawn and several flowing indoor spaces, that can be transformed and used for a variety of events. because also provides more than 3,000 square feet of gallery space to display and promote the work of Phoenix-based artists. And as luxurious as this sounds, the mission at because is much deeper.

"Another part of our focus is giving back. Ten percent of what is spent on an event is donated to a local nonprofit," Kathy says. "We have partnered with seven charities that our clients can choose to donate to, or if they are a nonprofit, the donation can go directly to them."

The array of spaces at because all have positive affirmation names, such as gracious, kind, original, fearless, joyful, humble, chill, honest, smooth. Kathy notes that the names add to the ambiance of such a heartwarming venue with dedicated staff and the goal of giving back.

"because has been extremely well-received by individuals and businesses. For many, the giveback is icing on the cake!" she says. "For example, a company needs to have a meeting somewhere, they see our beautiful space, it works for their needs AND they get to support a local cause while conducting a meeting they were going to have no matter what. There are others that have a similar heart to ours and have looked no further once they took a tour and found out about the giveback."

Hustle Phoenix has been one client that is near and dear to Kathy's heart. Hustle works with the under-resourced in Phoenix to go through a mentor program in becoming entrepreneurs. Hustle Phoenix hosts its graduations in because's Fearless auditorium.

"They love having a space that not only supports them as a cause but believes in their mission. And the community is learning about their important work as an organization as well," Kathy says. 

"The because Event Space is such a beautiful space, and the atmosphere of the venue brings so much joy," saysCrys Waddell, Hustle Phoenix's donor engagement and special events coordinator. "We are beyond grateful to have the opportunity to be selected as one of the seven charities that is allowed to use the space as a donation twice a year. We are humbled by the generosity of because...every time one of the available spaces is booked, Hustle Phoenix has the opportunity to receive a 10 percent donation. With the help of because, Hustle Phoenix is a thriving organization that hosts great events in a really great space."

Kathy says it is so rewarding to see clients choose a charity to give back to, post-event.

"After the event, it took one client two weeks to decide which cause to select for the giveback. In the end, she had such a hard time she selected to split it between two of the causes, so that's amazing."

To host an event with a truly entrepreneurial and charitable spirit, look no further than because in the new year.