Preparation is the key to success. The more you are prepared for any situation, the easier it becomes to divert any emergencies out of your control. Every event is different… Each time you add different variables such as venue, show time, show logistics, equipment needed, distance traveled, etc. you add or subtract time needed to properly set things in place. Our rule of thumb is to start with a minimum of four hours to prepare for an event. Many events require more time and manpower to accomplish everything needed to set up completely. We are sometimes asked, “Why does it take so long to set up for an event?” The answer is quite simple, safety. Yes, there possibly could be a much faster method to setting up, but the safety of your team, your customers, and our crew are way more important than that. When the carnival or fair comes to town would you prefer they get it out of the trucks and up and going as fast as possible, or would you rather they do it properly and safely? When you attend an event or concert, usually there is thousands of pounds of metal hanging directly over your head. Would you feel confident to know they threw all that up in an hour? Probably not.
In the production world things need to be assembled in a specific order. The stage needs to be assembled without any danger overhead. The lighting truss and sound system goes next, then everything on stage and out front. There are also many more variables that come into play in almost every event.
Before anything can be started proper electrical power needs to be installed. This requires a licensed and insured electrician. This also means the entire set up depends on the when and if the electrician shows up and does the work properly.
Something as simple as access to the dock could even become an issue. When utilizing the services of 6 or more vendors and your venue has one viable loading dock this can create quite the log jam.
Every bit of our equipment comes in a road case to protect our investment. These cases require adequate space to open and assemble the pieces. This often creates a conflict with the caterer and table decorators. It is a simple case of too many people in the same space at the same time. We try to get in and out way before other vendors due to space limitations and once again, safety. Sometimes early access isn’t possible and provisions have to be made. If we all need to be in the same space at the same time it would require a slightly slower set up speed to insure the safety of all involved. So when you plan an event keep in mind that the proper time to set up for all vendors will make your event run much smoother and should lead to better success for you.