Planning an event, particularly one outdoors, requires plenty of thought and advance preparation. The great thing about this, however, is that an outside venue can be a clean slate – a blank canvas for you to create. Read our tips below to find out how you can organise a successful outdoor extravaganza from the ground up.
1. Get permission
Once you’ve locked in the time and place of your event, do some research about what types of clearance you’ll need. Certain cities require permits that can take months to process. Be sure to factor in legalities for food, alcohol, and vendors; check if there are any noise ordinances in the area. Fire safety codes may also be in effect, as well as limitations on advertisements and ticket sales. Have a chat to local authorities for the most up to date information.
2. Create a layout
Make a rough sketch of the area where you’re holding the event. Map out the entrances and exits, as well as where vendors and entertainment will set up. Sorting out the logistics, like parking and loading zones, are important details that are often overlooked before it’s too late.
3. Outfit the area
Is the area already set up for an occasion? If the plot of land has never held an event, expect to do some groundwork installing guest amenities. Keep in mind you will be responsible for setting up the area, and clearing it out too.
4. Enlist a team of third-party vendors
Depending on what type of outdoor event you’re planning, you may choose to bring in special organisers. Coordinate vendors far in advance to take care of food, entertainment, operations, security, and transportation in addition to helpers and volunteers.
5. Think about guest comfort
Toilets, water dispending stations and adequate shelter are essential boxes to tick during the planning phase. It’s also important to think about pest control and proper lighting for nighttime events. Keeping guests happy is the name of the game.
6. Make health a priority
No matter what type of event you’re organising, you’ll need to have a First Aid kit on hand. Depending on how remote the location, you may even choose to hire medical professionals who are trained in CRP and life saving techniques for added security. Don’t forget to clearly display emergency information for the nearest hospitals also.
7. Get set with safety
Consider hiring security guards for your event. The crowd size and general behavior will help you determine how high a degree of security and how many guards you’ll need. For the safety of all involved, you should identify, control and monitor all possible hazards in the area and have a plan for emergency procedures. It’s also wise to create an event waiver for all participants.
8. Prepare for changes in climate
Keep tabs on the forecast as far in advance as possible. Extreme weather changes are a top concern for outdoor events, especially in Australia. Have tents ready for intense sunlight or rain protection, and be sure to properly anchor any erected structures for strong winds. The option of portable heaters and air conditioners can also be explored.
9. Devise a cleanup plan
Just because the event is over, doesn’t mean your job is done. Whatever modifications you’ve made to the outdoor space need to be returned to their original state. Think about contacting the local sanitation department or hiring a removal team.