For most people, February is a time when the year is still gaining momentum. It’s still a new year, things are just ramping up and forging into a productive first quarter. But for wedding and event professionals, by February, business is in full swing, often coming off of a massively busy holiday season. Basically in the event world, there tends to be little to no break at all from November through February. Therefore, in the wedding and event world, there is no time to catch a breath before the parties and events get rolling again.
Over the past month I’ve had the amazing pleasure to provide live music for some spectacular weddings and marquee events, from the Super Bowl in San Francisco, to a waterfront wedding on the beach in Santa Monica to the Houston Rodeo and BBQ Cook Off down in Texas. One thing I noticed as an ongoing theme among all the planners…was having a PLAN B. So what do I mean by a PLAN B? I mean rain, I mean wind, I mean traffic, delayed flights and I mean weather! Planners need to be prepared to move the masses from the outside to the inside, leave time for delayed photos and ceremonies and have interior locations on “standby” when the outdoors just won’t work.
As a planner are you prepared with a tent on standby, have you got a crew on speed dial all set to go with heaters, ties-downs and sand should “El Nino” show up at your event? February and winter months continue to be unpredictable, this may include cloud cover, obstructed sunlight and other visual elements. What does this mean for photos? Have you planned for alternate shoot locations? What about swiftly expediting sunset photos? Are you allowing for a cocktail hour to run a bit longer or cut a bit shorter to handle photos, on and off site from the ceremony or reception. Are your photographers and videographers aware of the specs they are working? Do they have ideas of where to shoot if in fact, their favorite locations are rained out or just are not accessible? As heroes, we need to be asking these questions.
Recently we traveled to San Francisco for Super Bowl events and one major obstacle was traffic, with events city-wide all transportation including Uber drivers and taxis seemed to be at the mercy of the masses. Imagine a football game 50 miles away from the city where most people were staying. This got me thinking about wedding shuttles, getting 200 people from a hotel to a church or ceremony location, then to a reception venue and then shuttles back to hotels throughout the night. Have you planned for alternate traffic routes? Have you hired drivers that are familiar with the area they are shuttling? As a planner are already such an event super hero, but going the extra mile with things like maps, tracking shuttles and following important Uber trips, will make you the planner breathe easier and look like the hero you are to your clients!
I’m not suggesting you go overboard and become so concerned about bad weather, traffic and unforeseen circumstances that people think you’re a bit crazy…I’m suggesting that we all plan ahead, plan for a few audibles at the line of scrimmage, prepare for crazy weather, crazy traffic, unforeseen circumstances, and check the forecast to have your tent rentals on standby with heaters and extra sandbags. As always be strong and plan for the best, after all, you are a hero and ready for anything.