Having a great relationship with a venue manager is critical if you want to achieve an extraordinary event.
You’ll need to ask them for permission to do things, and you need to give them the confidence that they can let you stretch the rules without them ending up with a damaged dance floor, or in our case damaged driveways or property.
In the image you see a stage cover marquee by Weeding Hire for a New Year’s Eve event some years ago at University of Tasmania Stadium (previously Aurora Stadium).
Whilst it might be ‘just grass’, there are a range of considerations to protect one of the best AFL playing surfaces in Australia, especially when the NAB Cup would be on that ground just 6 weeks later.
The risks included:
It would be very easy for the venue managers to have said ‘no’ but instead we worked with our client to mitigate the risk of damage.
There are also other things to consider like what order all of the equipment had to go in to the centre of the ground, allowing the groundsmen to have a last watering of the grass then isolating sprinkler systems, and logistics of what needed to be built first.
So what tips can we offer to ensure the venue manager is happy to have you back again, and maybe, if you’re lucky let you push the boundaries.
Suppliers with as many years of experience such as Weeding Hire could foresee some of the things the venue would be concerned about first and help you get risk mitigation in to place before you outlined your plans to the venue operator. Also let the venue manager know that you have a reputable supplier, this should put their mind at ease.
The last thing you want is not to be allowed back again. By letting them know, it’s another good way for them to outline other things you may not have thought about too, or they may have another idea that could be better. Either way, bring them in to the conversation. Teamwork is critical here.
Even if something is outdoors still be careful with it. Scratches, divots or tears can be very costly and very annoying for the venue manager even if you cover the cost of repair.
Send it out to everyone involved in the bump in, so that the setup is smooth and there aren’t excess people around when there doesn’t need to be.
So many people stop planning their runsheet when the event ends, but that’s when you really need good logistics because the packdown has only just begun. Add to this the fact that most people are also tired, and it’s critical to ensure all precautions are taken so there are no careless mistakes. You don’t want to have done so well looking after the venue only to damage something on the way out. Work with the suppliers and venue to see when they can work out the best time to take out the big stuff. Taking a structure down the next day could save you time and allow the venue manager to leave earlier too (which they’ll personally appreciate).
At the end of the day, event management is all about mutual respect for each others roles and property. Keep that in mind, and your suppliers and venues will be more than happy to work with you and go the extra mile.