Once again we held our open house the public. We average about 600 people per year at our farm, inviting the public to see the babies, view all of our locally made alpaca products and enjoy a day on the farm.
About 2 weeks prior to the open house, I start to lay away at night, figuring out all of the things I need to do go get ready for the event. So, hopefully this checklist will help you out the next time you host a large event.
Checklist for Preparing for Successful Community Events
1. Identify Your Vision
- Identify your topic and your audience
- What are audience’s relevant interests? We host mainly to kids at this event, so we have games, a tractor and hay bales they can play on.
What information do you hope to convey?
2. Coordinate With Others
- Find others in your community that may want to share the day – they can help you work on the details and the costs involved to make a bigger impact, co-market events, share expenses, etc…
Ask others about what worked, best ideas, lessons learned
3. Start Planning in Advance
- What Products You Want
- Will there be a lecture / speaker to help people educate attendees?
- Will there be "Events" or just cause mingling
- Check on your insurance coverage. Seriously.
5. Identify Resources to Support the Event
o Identify resources that each participant brings to the partnership
o Leverage relationships - who knows whom? Who could provide food? Publicity? Media coverage? Supplies? A venue?
6. Plan for providing refreshments and other supplies
- We usually provide free drinks and snacks. This helps people stay longer and be more comfortable
7. Promote and Publicize the Event
- Make a promotional flyer for the event – invest in one well-done piece – hang it up around town
Contact local newspapers and radio stations
- Hand out flyers at various events about 2-3 weeks prior to your event
- Focus marketing efforts to targeted groups, not individuals - you get more "bang for your buck."
- Get creative – remember that church bulletins, supermarkets, little league games, community bulletin boards, book clubs, libraries, and hair salons all provide marketing audiences for your efforts.
Supplies you may need for your event