In this months YouTube + IGtv episode we brought up a few key points on what to look for in a venue. Last month we talked about everything wedding related in which we did talk a little bit about it in this months episode, but we can't forget about all those social events, corporate events or even the fashion shows. So here we go...
1.) Location, Location, Location! Do you have guests traveling in from out of town? What are they going to do during their down time when they aren't at your event? Think about the surroundings such as restaurants or just overall entertainment.
Think about parking. Do your guests have to drive around and around for a spot if something isn't available close by? If the weather sucks that day, would they have to walk in it? Also think about the loading in and loading out for your vendors.
Side note: Do not have all your vendors arrive at the same time if the loading area is in fact limited.
**More tips on what to do about hotels and transportation can be found in last months episode.
2.) Ask yourself, "What is important to you?"
Is the food important? Is the music important? These are just to name a few. Sometimes (and by sometimes, I mean most of the time) venues can determine what can and cannot be brought in. For example, only certain caterers are allowed in a space and sometimes DJ's are only allowed so you can forget about that band you wanted (this is due to the acoustics). If you're really set on something or someone, ask the venue you initially like if they are allowed. I would highly do this before you even book a tour, you don't want your heart broken 💔
3.) Include your set up time and your tear down time within your rental time frame....and be REALISTIC!
This is a very common mistake. In the episode I also bring up the fact that you shouldn't think 1 hour for set up is enough. 1) Guests arrive early, and 2) Something will most likely go wrong while you're setting up <--This is why I include "fluff time" within my production schedules so I have more time than not to fix it or run an errand if something is forgotten.
Look at all the little things that your venue includes. Depending on the event type, you may want to look for the following: A stage, production lighting, AV equipment from your mics right down to a projector, tables and chairs (believe it or not), etc. etc. etc. This will affect your budget if you have to bring in a lot of items and if you are doing a production like we do, this will add up <--I can't tell you how much I have had to spend on lighting being brought in for an art show 🤦
5.) Read those contracts over and over!
You don't want to get too far into planning and then realize your venue doesn't allow something. Some examples can be that popcorn bar you wanted or the confetti and feather boas for that photo booth.
6.) Love your 2nd backup plan if the 1st plan gets rained or snowed out.
This mostly pertains to weddings and that ceremony of yours, but if you are planning an outdoor concert or something and you don't love that 2nd backup plan as much, maybe rethink that venue. It's sad to say, but you do have to think of the worst thing that could happen.
7.) What does it look like?
Walk through your whole timeline for your event, and I mean literally. Do you love what everything looks like in the background when significant moments would be happening in that exact space? What I mean by this is, do you love that background where the speaker is going to be when they're talking to the guests? For your first dance, do you love the background of where you're going to be dancing? Right down to if it's a fashion show, are the guests going to see the models before they hit the runway? Think about those photos and videos and what is it going to capture during those important moments.
ALERT - THIS IS NOT MENTIONED IN THE VIDEO....
On another note, when it comes to fashion shows or any event that involves models, etc.
1) Make sure there are enough outlets and that it can actually hold SEVERAL hot irons. You don't want to blow a fuse.
2) Take in mind that you are seeing the green room empty so imagine all the clothing racks, models, hair and makeup artists in that room - Is it still big enough?
3) Look at the lighting. Lighting is SO important when it comes to getting ready. If you bring a pop-up light for the hair and makeup artists, is it too small of a room where it's going to get too hot with all the lights and all the people in there? How many pop-up lights will you actually need because that will take up even more space.
Again, I hope this helps. If it doesn't and you want more information, email us via our contact form about our hourly consulting package. If you're a venue reading this and watching our videos, we do offer venue consulting so you are more than capable to take on ANY event.
Till next time,
Photo credits: Photographer-Tinge Photography, Welcome Sign- Love Letters MN,
Floral- Wisteria Design Studio, Venue- Minnetonka Apple Orchard