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Category Archive: Orlando event management

The AV Glossary

The jargon and fine details of the AV industry can be overwhelming, especially as you’re planning your next event and realize — you don’t know what anything means! Don’t struggle through your AV quote without grabbing this handy cheat sheet!

The Gear

Rigging Points: These are specific spots in the ceiling where things can be safely hung.

Rig Plot: This diagram shows where the rigging points are located. Ask your venue for this if it was not provided!

Truss: This is the framework of the structure. Motors are connected to the rigging points and the truss, as are the lighting, projectors, and speakers.

Motors: Attached to the rigging point and truss, the motor allows the truss to be brought down so you can attach any equipment.

The Microphones

Handheld: These are great for speeches, Q&A sessions, or presentations. Opt for a handheld mic when your entertainment is stationary and won’t get tangled in a cord!

Wireless: Wireless mics are popular with public speakers, interviewers, and stage performances. You’ll also see these referred to as lav mics, lavalier, or lapel mics.

DPA — Headset: Choose these when you prioritize superior voice reproduction, comfort, and easy setup over concealment.

Combo Kit: Your AV company might allow you to utilize both handheld and wireless mics!

The Lighting

Gobo: A pattern you can insert into a light to project that pattern through the light. These can be used to add texture effects on walls and scenery, or projected through haze as an aerial effect.

Spot Fixtures: These hard-edged lighting fixtures are versatile and flexible. They can project color, spinning lights, or gobos, and are great for spotlighting people or objects while leaving the rest of the stage in darkness.

LED: LEDs are significantly more energy efficient than other bulbs. They can transform a space by color washing walls or decorative elements with multi-colored light, and since they don’t require any warm-up time, they can be quickly turned on and off for different effects.

Beam: While these moving lights may look like lasers, they are actually just very tight beams of light! You often see this kind of light at big concerts.

The Projectors

Rear Projection: While this is a great option because there are no rigging costs — since the projector is on the ground — you need to make sure you’ll have enough space for the equipment and projectors behind the screen.

Front Projection: Placed in front of the audience, these take up floor space unless you choose to have it rigged (although it will cost you to do so). Consider if any people or objects will obstruct the projector at any time.

It’s vital that you sit down with your AV company and ask them to walk you through the contract, explaining each piece and answering all your questions. For more information on Orlando event management, give us a call at 407-955-4949.

Prepping for Autumn Event Planning Trends

Fall is approaching, which means pumpkin spice and autumn aesthetics will soon take over storefront displays and living rooms, and Orlando event planning will be in high demand. Although Florida’s leaves might not change color, event planning opportunities blossom with the changing of the seasons. Be prepared for what autumn may bring with these upcoming event planning trends!

Fundraising in Fall

As summer comes to a close, organizations want to kick off fall strong and raise funds before winter. Fall fundraising is a great chance to welcome people with delicious cuisine and fun activities that encourage engagement. To help your next fundraising event stand out from the rest, add a new and exciting form of entertainment, such as a magician or a caricature artist for guests to enjoy while mingling and purchasing raffle tickets.

Team Building in Fall

September often marks a return to normalcy after sporadic work schedules and summer traveling, so businesses are looking to rein in the autumn quarter with team building. It’s prime time for teams to gather for company picnics and bond before the hectic rush of the winter holidays. Make these events feel fresh and different by adding a in some yummy snacks, a few games of cornhole, or even a mechanical bull to bring everyone together. Make sure you capture your team’s best moments with our videography and photography!

Venues for Fall

Entertainment and team building activities are great accents to fall events, but to make your event stand out, you need a great venue. Take advantage of Orlando’s warm fall season to select an outdoor venue with a view. If you’re planning an evening event where things may get a bit chill, consider an indoor venue. Planning events before the chill of winter will give you more options and the chance to make the right selection for your event.

Fun Planners wants to help you make the most of the Orlando event planning opportunities the new season brings. Contact us today to find out how we can take your event to the next level!

 

Plan in Advance to Enjoy Your Own Event

We’ve all been guilty of waiting until the last minute to plan an event, and the stress of scrambling in a time crunch can cause unnecessary panic. When you organize your event in advance and get help from a skilled team, last-minute planning disasters will be a thing of the past.

If You Need A Venue, Caterer and Entertainment

Finding the right venue, cuisine, and entertainment can be overwhelming as the date of your event draws closer. The sooner you find a venue, the better! If your event is six months out, start venue hunting right away. Remember that October, November, and March are peak wedding months in Florida, so for those events in particular, availability can be limited if you don’t plan ahead.  

You’ll be ready to move on to catering within two to three weeks. Take someone with you when choosing a venue to make the decision easier and faster, and delegate that responsibility to them while you move on to researching entertainment. Your goal should be to have booked your entertainment and catering four or five months before the event. Then, you can use the remaining months to focus on details like decorations and party favors.

If You Need A Venue and Catering

If you’re planning a conference or similar event and won’t be needing a band or performers, give yourself five months to get fully organized. You’ll need to decide on the venue by the three month mark, and then you have a week or so to choose the caterer. All-inclusive venues that provide food for guests in-house can be an efficient, one-stop-shop approach to event planning that help to lighten your team’s workload.

If You Only Need Catering

Backyard bashes and family reunions make location a non-issue, but booking the caterer far in advance will allow you more time to complete all your other checklist items. Feedback on cuisine from your team takes some of the responsibility off your back. Your planning process may be short, but to avoid the chaos of finding a caterer just weeks before your event, be sure to choose one three months ahead of time.

Looking to make your Orlando event planning strategy quick and painless? We can help you make your event a success and avoid last-minute stress before the big day. Contact us today at 407-955-4949 to find out how!

Stick To Your Budget And Still Plan A Great Event

Organizing an Orlando corporate event is enough stress on its own, but making sure that you don’t go over budget is the real challenge. However, there’s no more need to worry about going over budget —with these tips, you can make your money go a long way and plan an amazing event!

Entertainment

The entertainment at an event is what people really remember. Some couples spend the most time choosing the band for their wedding because they understand the importance of the DJ; they can make or break the event! This step should be your top priority, so even if you need to shift around the budget, the high-quality entertainment will be worth it. Push a generous amount of funds toward live entertainment like performers, celebrity impersonators, or even cigar rollers to ensure that your corporate event buzzes with excitement!

Good Eats

When planning your corporate event, remember that great food is guaranteed to pair well with great entertainment. After all, your guests will be doing the majority of their conversing over the cuisine you’ve decided to serve. Delicious bites are not only the key to conversation but a great way to make sure your event flows without any dull or standstill moments. If people love your catering choice, they’re sure to stick around to chat and eat until the end of the event.

Decor

After choosing your theme or color scheme, leave enough room in your budget for the essential decorative touches that make your event pop, and cut any unnecessary decor. When you focus on decorative staples that stand out the most like centerpieces and balloons, you can go on a hefty shopping spree at a low-priced market like Dollar Tree and stock up on items at better prices than where you can get these items than at big party superstores. That way, you can stock up on more of the items that count the most, and avoid extra expenses.

Gift Bags

Gift bags are a symbol of good hostship and a warm way to send your guests off, but they’re commonly seen as excessive and unnecessary. For a classy finishing touch on a great evening, include one food item of your choice and a handwritten thank you note inside. A small, sweet snack is more practical than multiple presents that turn into a heavy hassle. The most cost-effective way to give your guests something they’ll actually enjoy is to add a wrapped macaroon, cookie, or chocolate bites to each gift bag!

An Orlando corporate event doesn’t have to break the bank; in fact, you can plan an exciting, memorable event and still stay within your budget. Contact us today to find out how we can help!

Questions to Ask Before Booking a Venue

Finding the perfect venue for your next event can feel like a never-ending quest! As you’re searching, make sure that you know exactly what to ask so that your contract lays out all the details, “what-ifs,” and prevents you from being surprised with fees later on! Take a look at some questions you need to ask before committing to a venue.

Questions About Rates and Policies

  1. What does the rental rate include?
  2. How much is the security deposit, and how much of it is refundable?
  3. What is your cancellation policy?
  4. If there is a cancellation fee but the venue gets re-booked, will those payments be taken into account when calculating my fee?
  5. Does the venue have any restrictions?
  6. Does the venue require any additional insurance?
  7. Are there cleaning fees or overtime charges?
  8. What happens if fewer people attend than expected?
  9. When is the final guest count due?
  10. Are there any other functions going on during the day that could interrupt my event?
  11. Do you have a designated event supervisor on the day of? If not, who will be my contact person?

Questions About Set Up and Tear Down

  1. How long will I have to set up and tear down the event? If there are any associated fees, please include those in the proposal.
  2. What is the absolute earliest I can set up?
  3. When does the event need to be over by?

Questions About Suppliers

  1. Is there an on-site caterer? If so, what do they provide, and are there multiple packages available?
  2. How experienced is the chef?
  3. Are there food and drink minimums, and could we replace the rental fee with this cost?
  4. Can I bring outside suppliers? If so, is there a fee?
  5. Do you have a list of preferred suppliers/vendors?
  6. Do you have an exclusive vendor list?

Questions About Amenities

  1. Is WiFi provided? If so, what is the fee?
  2. Are technicians, cameras, microphones, and A/V equipment provided, or will they need to be rented?
  3. How many bathrooms are available for use?
  4. Does the venue have its own event staff?

Questions About Accessibility

  1. Is parking provided? If so, what is the fee, and how many spaces will be available? If there are not enough spaces for guests to park on-site, what is the next best option?
  2. What are the best ways for guests to get to and from the location?
  3. Is the venue accessible and comfortable for guests with limited mobility?

After you have communicated with the venue, it’s important that all verbal discussions are confirmed in emails or written contracts, that way there is recorded proof of all fees and policies. This will help guarantee that your Florida corporate event runs smoothly. If you have any questions or want to learn more about how we can help you plan your next event, contact us today!

6 Event Planning Tips to Stay on Budget

The planning for your next event is underway, and you can see it now: guests with glasses of champagne, laughing and enjoying exquisite appetizers, while elegant music and the rustle of twirling dresses fill the room. That’s your dream – but you’re on a tight budget. Is it possible? Check out these event planning tips for hosting an affordable event.

Go Digital
Send your invites through digital invite services, such as Greenvelop or Evite, or through email. It’s eco-friendly and saves money that would’ve gone to postage and printing. Guests are also less likely to lose an electronic invite than a paper copy and will be able to revisit your invites to check things like time, date, location, and dress code.

Pick a Theme
Choosing a theme helps narrow down choices for food, music, and venue decorations.

DIY Decoration
While it might be easier and less time-consuming to purchase everything you need, it is also costly. Get creative and gather things you already own or things that you can purchase at a lower cost. Gather a team of volunteers who are passionate about decor instead of paying additional team members or sacrificing valuable time to do it all yourself.

Apps and Sweets
For many events, it’s not necessary to serve a full meal. Appetizers and desserts are less expensive and allow your guests to mingle. They also don’t require people to sit and eat, which is also an effective way to save on tables, linens, and chairs.

Stick to the Plan
Once you have chosen your theme, stick to the plan. Don’t overspend on things you won’t need and save any ‘leftover dollars’ until the very end, because it’s always smart to prepare for plan B, emergencies, and surprises for your clients.

Don’t Do it Alone
Don’t be the only person in charge of your budget. Make sure someone else is holding you accountable because it will be easier to overspend on the wrong things if you feel like no one will know. Another person is a wonderful source of input, feedback, and creativity.

Looking for more tips and tricks for your Orlando event planning strategy? Contact us today at 407-955-4949. We can help with anything from entertainment, blow up rides and games, and more. Check out our blog page for more content!

Take Your Easter Event to the Next Level

Looking to throw the Easter Egg Hunt event of the year? Take a look at these unique suggestions for activities, snacks, and decorations that will help bring your Easter event to the next level.

Opening Ceremonies

Put together an area that acts as the center of festivities. Set up a small stage, blast fun, energetic music, and decorate with colorful streamers, crepe paper, and balloons. This is a great area to announce the beginning of the Easter egg hunt, the location of the food, any rules, and the winners.

Craft Station

A craft station is especially helpful for parents with little ones! Provide paper bunny ears for children to color and wear, or paper Easter eggs that can be doodled on and used as tree ornaments for the day. A craft station is also a great place for children to decorate their own Easter eggs. Offer a few unique additions to standard dyes such as white crayons, Kool-aid, Mod Podge, stickers or sparkles, and glue. You can also ask participants to bring old egg cartons for children to draw on.

Costume Contest

A contest doesn’t have to consist solely of ‘Best Easter Bunny Outfit.’ Incorporate a variety of categories, such as ‘Funniest Easter T-Shirt’ and ‘Best Face Paint.’ Don’t forget to supply a few fun props for those who didn’t dress up but still want to get in the spirit!

Easter-Themed Snacks

There’s a wide variety of Easter-inspired snacks. Try these Jell-O Easter eggs or these Rice Krispy Easter egg treats that have a hidden surprise. Throw in Cadbury Eggs with Muddy Buddies for a colorful twist on a classic snack, or cover strawberries in orange chocolate to make them look like little carrots.

Give a Variety of Prizes

This is a great opportunity to reiterate that the hunt is about fun, not about which child found the greatest number of eggs! Hide a few ‘golden eggs’ that hold special prizes, or even a clue to find a special prize that takes them on a treasure hunt. Reward the child who found the egg in the “sneakiest hiding spot,” and give a prize to the child who found the least amount of eggs as well. Encourage sharing and kindness by searching for a child who gave eggs to someone who didn’t find as many, and give them a special prize in private such as extra snacks or a chocolate bunny.

Looking for more tips and tricks about Orlando event management? We can help with anything from entertainment to catering to team building. Contact us today at 407-955-4949 to learn more!

 

Trick Yourself Into Being a Patient Planner

Picture waiting an extra half hour for your food at the restaurant; mornings where you’re running late and your keys are missing; getting stuck in traffic on your way to an appointment. Do you feel stressed and impatient yet?

Event planning is consistently ranked as one of the most stressful jobs. While these daily stressors are certainly unwelcome and unpleasant, event planners deal with even more – What do you do if the speakers blow? If the caterer forgets the vegetarian option? Or if your team arrives a half hour late?

The long answer: spend a lot of time developing your backup plan.

The short answer: be patient. It’s not easy to be patient, but if you take a look at these tips for tricking yourself into developing patience, you’ll find that you not only feel less stressed, but your events run more efficiently.

1. Understand your triggers. When you exercise self-awareness and reevaluate whether or not your response is justified, you can take steps toward rerouting that response. Practice self-control by forcing your brain to focus on something else.

2. Take an exercise break. Sometimes the best thing you can do for your body is to take a 10 minute running, walking, or biking break. This will burn off any accumulated stress hormones and clear your mind, making it easier for you to return to your task patient and anger-free.

3. Count to 10. This advice has been around for years and with good reason; this is a great chance for you to reset your mind and refocus. It also gives you 10 seconds of silence, and sometimes when you’re frustrated and impatient, it’s best to take that extra time before speaking.

4. Issue a warning. If you can feel yourself becoming impatient, tell the other person. Explain that you’re starting to get frustrated and explain why. If it’s because of something they’re doing, this gives them a chance to modify their behavior. The opposite could also happen; by saying it out loud, you could realize that your annoyance is misplaced and that you need some space.

5. Ask for help. Whenever you’re starting to feel overwhelmed, it’s easy to feel frazzled and impatient. Take time to review your to-do list and decide which tasks can be delegated to others on your team.

If you’re looking for equipment to help your Orlando event planning team, feel free to contact Fun Planners at 407-955-4949. For more tips, tricks, and more, visit our blog and our catalog.

How Your Personality Affects Your Planning Strategy

According to Myers-Briggs, there are 16 unique personality types. Curious about which type you are and how it affects your event planning career? Take the quiz here, and then read on to learn more!

The Introverts:

ISTJs are diligent hard workers. You feel stressed when things are rushed, so plan ahead by delegating tasks to trustworthy team members.

ISFJs are loyal and understanding. Conflicts and last-minute changes stress you out. Prep multiple backup plans and train your team on conflict management.

INFJs are compassionate and imaginative. You feel stressed in disorder and when others are negative. Plan ahead and invest in a trustworthy team that values kind, open communication.

INTJs are innovative and independent. Procrastination and a lack of initiative stress you out. Hold weekly accountability meetings to check progress and reward self-motivated team members.

ISTPs are analytical troubleshooters. Inefficiency and strict guidelines stress you out. Invest in a team that you trust and hold weekly accountability meetings to check progress.

ISFPs are cooperative and loyal. You feel stressed when there’s a time crunch and a lack of understanding, so plan ahead and delegate tasks. Encourage your team to ask questions when they don’t understand and let them know you’ll do the same.

INFPs are flexible, reflective, and empathetic. Open disrespect and disharmony stress you out, so invest time in a team that works well together.

INTPs are independent and theoretical. Interruptions and a lack of logic stress you out, so schedule time for the unexpected in your daily life.

The Extroverts:

ESTPs are energetic troubleshooters. Quick decisions and isolation stress you out. Since you work best on a team of active, task-oriented people, invest in a team that you trust.

ESFPs are spontaneous, playful, and resourceful. You feel stressed by heavy data analysis and abstract information. Delegate financial and data responsibilities to a team member you trust.

ENFPs are expressive and friendly. Over-commitment and endless detail stress you out, so delegate detail-oriented tasks to team members with those skills.

ENTPs are strategic and enthusiastic. Isolation and deadlines stress you out, so hold weekly team meetings for accountability and to check progress.

ESTJs are responsible and straightforward. Constant changes and inefficient workers stress you out, so prep multiple backup plans and invest in a quality team.

ESFJs are warm, decisive team players. Isolation and uncertainty stress you out, so invest in a team with a wide range of skills.

ENFJs are collaborative and persuasive. Since procrastinators, short-sightedness, and excessive criticism stress you out, take time to choose the perfect team of workers.

ENTJs are assertive and strategic. Disorganization and others ignoring established guidelines stresses you out, so invest in an organized, professional team.

If you’re looking for tips on themes, how to stand out from the competition, and more, contact us today to refresh your Orlando event planning strategy.

Reasons to Ask Your Team for Feedback

An event is only as great as the team who plans it, and that’s why incorporating their feedback leads to success. Here are some tips for conducting a successful debriefing session with your team.

Set a Time Frame
Ultimately, the rule is that the longer you wait, the less your team will recall, so debrief while details are fresh. For shorter, smaller events, schedule a debriefing with your team within a day or two. For larger projects, particularly ones that last over a period of time, hold multiple debriefing sessions to tackle one area at a time and make it more manageable. This helps you stay on time and on budget.

Lead the Discussion
As the event planner, it is your job to set the tone and set the agenda. Make sure your team knows your goals, how they should prepare, and what they should bring. This is not the time for people to complain or assign blame. Instruct your team to provide constructive feedback, ensuring all comments remain impersonal and focus on what happened, not who did it. Keep it positive and focus on collective learning.

You Can’t Be Everywhere at Once
You’re just one person, and as much as you want to be everywhere and do everything, it’s impossible. Luckily, that’s where your team comes in! They can provide details on things you missed, like how smooth the transition was from dinner to dancing, or how the audience reacted to the catering.

Qualitative vs. Quantitative
While emotions can easily blend into facts, aim to keep them separate. Start by reviewing quantitative data. Assess milestones, major phrases, and the overall timeline, asking your team’s feedback on how long things took, how much they cost, and if you came over or under budget.
Next, move on to individual opinions and feelings. Ask questions like which methods worked particularly well, which were frustrating and ineffective, and which strategies should you avoid or repeat on future projects.

Improvements for the Future
Afterwards, review your team’s feedback and create a priority list. Split them into two columns: need and want. If you’re in the midst of a large project, evaluate what should be implemented immediately and who should take charge of that. If you just completed a small project, determine what is imperative to the success of your next event.

For more information on hosting your corporate event, birthday party, or anniversary, contact Fun Planners today. We are your one-stop shop for all things Orlando event management. Contact us today at 407-955-4949.