We’re loving this sunny weather and what could be better than taking your event outdoors!
Outdoor events can offer greater flexibility, creativity and fun, but there are extra details to consider which can make outdoor events more complex than indoor.
Here’s some points to consider:
1. Does your event lend itself to an outdoor setting
Not every event will work out-of-doors – If you’re planning an IT exhibition for example, you’re probably better off booking a convention centre. Consider the purpose and key objectives before considering an outdoor event.
2. Find a suitable venue
Once you’ve settled on an outdoor event, you’ll want to find a suitable venue. Whether it’s a city park, country house hotel or outdoor arena, work with site management to understand the capacity, amenities and activities each outdoor facility can properly handle.
It’s also important up-front to acquire the proper permits to run your event and to check local authority restrictions that may affect your event such as noise restrictions, fire and safety codes.
3. Have a plan B
As we’re talking UK its important that we have a ‘bad weather plan’ and keep abreast of weather reports as the day approaches.
Determine well in advance your bad weather strategy – can you easily move your event inside? Will marquees provide sufficient coverage? Will you postpone or cancel your event? Also consider how weather conditions will affect suppliers such as AV.
Know your cost liabilities, insurance options and contract details in the event that bad weather leads to cancelation or damages.
4. Consider your AV and equipment & logistics
Running outdoor events can make equipment hire a little more complicated.
Meet at the venue up-front to agree load in/out, parking, power needs, etc. Do you have Wi-Fi access? Does your venue have a portable generator or do you need to supply one? Do you require walkway and car park lighting, and is this supplied or do you need to provide?
Ensure that you have allowed for extra flexibility with for example extra extension cords and synch cords, and understand where the power stations are located in advance.
5. Keep your guests comfortable
To make sure that your guests are happy and focused on the event itself, it’s important to provide the right seating, tables and of course sanitation facilities.
In case the weather is a little warmer, you’ll need to ensure that there are places for guests to escape the heat – is natural shade available, or do you need to provide parasols or gazebos?
What kind of food and drink will you be providing and how will this be kept? If it’s a hot day you will need to provide plenty of access to drinks such as water coolers.
What’s the pest control status of your location? A midge invasion is likely to dampen the spirits of even the hardiest guest!
6. Communication is king
Be sure to set up a means for communication with all staff and suppliers during the event such as WhatsApp and ensure that you test mobile reception throughout the location beforehand.
7. Leave it as you found it
Depending on the venue you may need to arrange with a local waste removal company to assist in clean up.
Now all you have to do is wait for the sun!