July 4, 2017 – An event management firm’s Recap!

Like most event management and concert production firms, July 4 is one of the busiest weekends of the year. We had several clients, but two of them really stand out for two very different reasons. Please enjoy our recap, and feel to ask questions in the comments!

City of Celina – Social media and event management for municipalities

The City of Celina is one of the fastest growing municipalities in the State of Texas. The demographic mainly consists of upwardly-mobile young parents with small children. City government is growing as fast as the City itself is – which leaves very little time for planning events. However, city events generate a feeling of community and civic pride, and are a true necessity for growing areas. How does city staff balance their time in promoting events vs other municipal responsibilities?

In Depth Events was able to provide an In Depth solution for the City of Celina’s Splash and Blast event. This patriotic event features live music, fireworks, waterslides, and plenty of food and crafts vendors. We were able to help city staff by handling all social media promotion (including video promotions), sponsorship procurement, and other event management services, such as banner creation, poster creation and placement, and day-of-show sponsor and volunteer support.

Our efforts helped to increase event sponsorship by over three times the amount they had in 2016. Furthermore, the event sponsors were pleasantly surprised with nearly five times the amount of attendees from previous years. Our pre-event social media promotion, combined with monitoring and responding to questions during the event on social media platforms, really paid off for the City of Celina.

Austin Symphony – location-specific concert production services in Austin

The co-founders of In Depth Events have been working with the Austin Symphony for years, providing the perfect stage and rooftop system for the official Fourth of July event for the City of Austin. Unlike most events in Austin, which are designed to bring tourists in – this event is specific to Austin citizens, and Austin people are serious about their music. So how does an event management company handle a concert event for one the most discerning audiences in the world?

With integrity and professionalism. The lawn at the Long Center is one of the most challenging setups we do. It starts with a 15-degree grade to setup our 40’x40’ load bearing stage and rooftop system. This makes usually mundane task like leveling a stage (or driving a forklift) much more difficult. Combined with 100-degree temperatures and an 80 pieces symphony orchestra on stage, this show is challenging to say the least.

Once again, the staff of In Depth Events knocked it out of the park. In addition to building the perfect stage and rooftop for the occasion, we were also able to add a touch of our event management services by designing a custom banner for the rooftop structure. This small addition made a huge difference in the look and feel of the stage, and promoted HEB (the title sponsor) in a far more attractive and visible way than before.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this recap. Please feel free to ask us any questions about these events in the comments – and please contact us for your future event needs. We look forward to hearing from you, and working with you!


Bad Weather Conditions and Live Events

Extreme Weather Conditions at Live Events

Outdoor events and activations are in a class by themselves.  In addition to the difficulties of production requirements, parking and crowd control, you also have to add fencing, porta-potties and the tempestuous moods of Mother Nature.  In this post, we’ll discuss how to plan for bad weather conditions at live events and the specific conditions that our technicians are trained to look for when determining whether or not to continue an event in bad weather.

Unpredictable weather and live events

Image of Safety During Bad Weather Conditions

Safety During Bad Weather Conditions is the Number One Priority for In Depth Events

In our home State of Texas, weather can be…  fickle.  It’s an old joke here that “If you don’t like the weather in Texas, just wait a minute and it will change.”  Of course, our touring and logistics groups handle activations and experiential events all over the nation.  We’ve been drowned in Denver, deluged in Duluth and snowed on in St Paul.  We’ve been hailed on in Helena, had sleet in San Antonio and tornadoes in…  well, you get the idea.  The point is we are very experienced with bad weather conditions at live events and how to make sure the equipment and your attendees are safe before, during and after bad weather strikes.

As a production company, we have to be ready for all types of weather at an outdoor event. Rain gear and pop-up tents are part of every single pack that goes on the truck.  All of our electrical distribution systems are water resistant and rated for outdoor use.  Our ballast plans for our rooftops are specifically designed with high wind conditions in mind.

Speaking of rooftops – whenever we do a stage and roof system, we will always have a roof tech on site to monitor the roof and the weather conditions at any time there is activity on the stage.  On most of our outdoor rental stage and roof system builds, you’ll see a weather station including an anemometer and a rain gauge on the structure.  Monitoring the weather at all times is a big part of our commitment to safety on the event site.

 

Make sure your event company has a bad weather plan

Image of bad weather from concert stage

After the rain – back to the show!

Especially when using rooftops or mobile stages – it’s imperative that production company that you have contracted has a bad weather plan.  With our company, it’s our Rooftop Emergency Procedures.  This document has very specific tolerances for wind and rain and clearly explains our responsibility to our clients in case of bad weather.

In addition to this document, it’s also important for everyone to sit down long before the event and discuss the issues related to bad weather conditions at live events.  The promoter, production company, venue owner and (if possible) the municipality should all be given well-defined roles and responsibilities for dealing with bad weather.  Knowing these roles beforehand can save precious minutes and provide a well-organized response for attendees.

Do you have questions about weather and your outdoor activation, concert, or festival?  Ask a Question of the bad weather safety experts at In Depth Events.  We’re happy to take our knowledge and experience and apply it to your event.  We look forward to hearing from you and working with you!


Image of Concert Production for Univision Radio Event

Turnkey Concert Production for Univision Radio

Univision Radio is one of the major players in the Dallas Fort Worth hispanic market. Their radio promotions department do a large concert event every May that pulls in a very targeted demographic of people and a large chunk of sponsorship dollars. With an estimated 20,000 people in attendance, sponsors get impressions to their potential customers via banners, logo rotation on jumbotrons and a VIP riser directly to the right of the stage. The attendees get a day long, non-ticketed event with multiple national acts, food vendors and on stage giveaways.

Without even contacting us, Univision Radio began checking our references. As a certified building contractor in Dallas, a preferred vendor at Fair Park, Univision checked with some of our satisfied clients and on our solid reputation within the City of Dallas. Univision finally contacted us to request a bid. When our bid was accepted, Univision let us know that we were the only bidder – after checking our references, they knew that we were the vendor for their show.

Univision – Festival De Mayo – Fair Park Dallas, Tx

It’s always a pleasure to know that your work is recognized by your peers. When your reputation speaks for itself, then clients like Univision Radio (and our other clients) stand up and take notice. We lived up to their name and reputation by handling full production for this event. We provided a 40 foot x 40 foot load bearing rooftop structure, lighting, audio system, power distribution, scaffolding and barricade for this concert. Our stage ran on time all day and set changes between the acts were smooth and trouble free. At the end of the show, the Univision Radio contact told our owner that it was the best, smoothest show that he had ever been involved with.

Now, that’s what we like to hear! If you are ready to show your clients and sponsors how a festival stage should look and sound, then Ask Us a Question  about your upcoming event. We are ready to promote your brands anywhere in the nation. We look forward to hearing from you and working with you!


Image of U.S. Flag during Patriotic Events

Stage and Production Rental Services for Patriotic Events

At In Depth Events, we love doing outdoor festivals – and we’ve done hundreds of them, all over the country.  However, some of our favorite types of events are patriotic events and festivals.

Providing the best stage and rooftop system for your patriotic event

As I am writing this, I am sitting side of stage at an airshow in McKinney, TX.  The local police, firemen and EMS personnel are here, as well as several vintage planes from WWII and other armed conflicts and a Vietnam-era tank.  In Depth Events has provided a 32 foot x 24 foot load bearing rooftop with flybays, and a 32 foot x 24 foot’ stage with a monitor wing.  It’s a beautiful November day in Texas and the last skydive team included a WWII veteran, a Korean War veteran and a Vietnam War veteran.

Although I’ve never served in the military, I’m proud to be an American.  Our production rental team, event professionals and technicians all come from different backgrounds, but we’re all proud to be a part of patriotic events – whether the event is a huge Fourth of July extravaganza for a City or for a smaller regional show benefiting wounded veterans.

For any event, you can trust that our event staff will provide exactly what you need.  The stage and rooftop we’ve provided today is the perfect structure for this event.  We’ll normally discount our production rental services for non-profits and today’s event is no exception.  At In Depth Events, we’re honored to be a position to give back our services to people that have provided the very means for us to be in business.

Turnkkey production rentals or stand alone production services

In Depth Events is a full service production company, providing audio rentals, lighting rentals and generator rentals in addition to our stage and roof systems.  However, production rentals is a very small industry and many times, we’re referred a show by a production company that may not offer some of the services we do.  Today, Alford Media is handling audio and lighting and provided the referral to the end client for our stage and rooftop.

As you are reading this, you may be an event planner or another production company needing our services.  Our audio rental inventory is available with our stages and rooftops or as a standalone production rental.  Our lighting inventory is extremely diverse, and our special effects department can provide amazing, dynamic effects for your next event. Our production rentals services can be turnkey, but for some clients, they’ll only need a specific area of our expertise.  In either case, we’re happy to work with you!

On site, I’ve got a great band on stage and I’m enjoying watching the children eating cotton candy and wondering over the vintage planes.  The adults are enjoying themselves as well, but they seem a bit more pensive.  A child doesn’t have the capability to understand the sacrifices that the people in these planes made.  As an adult, and a parent myself, I can only hope to identify with the heroes represented here – and I’m honored to be a part of this event and all our patriotic events!

I hope this blog has been informative for our event planner clients! For more information on In Depth Events and our event production capabilities, please Ask Us a Question today. We look forward to hearing from you and working with you on your event!


Image of Stage and Roof Systems for Live Events

Using Stage and Roof Systems for Your Event: A Guide for Event Planners

At In Depth Events, we’ve built hundreds of rooftops for outdoor events.  Whether your event is using a load bearing stage and roof system or a non load bearing stage and roof system (also called a genie roof, or a shade roof), the basic rules that apply to safety and successful use are the same.  Below, we’ll go over the most important guidelines for a successful show!

Pre-planning with your production vendor

Vital to the process of setting up a successful event is pre-planning.  In most cases, the stage and roof systems are central to the event, so it’s important to get an overhead site plan in place early in the game.  Begin by placing the stage and roof in a central location, pointing away from any close residential areas.  Then, you can sketch in vendor booths, points of entry and exit for audience and placement of vendor booths and port-o-potties.  Once you have a working diagram, check for crowd flow.

It’s better to have your stage and roof systems on high ground for a variety of reasons.  It’s better acoustically, because it allows the PA to throw farther.  It’s helpful for visibility as well.  Most importantly, if it rains, then the performance area doesn’t get flooded out.

All stage and roof systems need to be guyed down.  In some cases, we’ll use ground stakes to guy a rooftop down.  However, if the rooftop is to be placed on concrete, or in a grassy area where power, gas, or sewer lines are underground, we’ll use water ballast.  It’s important to know which type of points we’ll be using long before our trucks arrive.

On site with your production crew

Image of Stage and Roof SystemsAll production companies want you to have a successful event.  However, we need your help to make this happen!  First and foremost, make sure you or a senior member of your staff is on site at the pre-arranged load in time to show the crew exactly where the rooftop is going to be placed.  Have a printed version of your overhead and a printed version of the schedule of events ready for the production crew chief.  This simple step will solve the majority of timing and placement issues.

The production crew chief will need to be able to access a senior member of your event staff at all times during the event.  If you are using radios, make sure he has one assigned to him and knows where to charge it up during off times.  If you are using cell phones, make sure to swap numbers and check them.  Communication is key!

Finally, please provide the basic necessities for your crew.  Many times, a crew will show up to begin the build two days before the event starts.  If the porta-potties are not scheduled until the day before the event, things can get messy.  Also, please make arrangements for water and ice to be available to your stagehands as they build your rooftop, during the run of show and for strike.  (The occasional pizza delivery doesn’t hurt, either!)

Promotional banners and soft goods

It’s common for banners to be used for both load bearing and non load bearing rooftops.  Each rooftop has different sizes available for banner hangs, so make sure and check with your event professional to see what these sizes can be – and let them know you are planning on hanging banners on our structures.  We’re happy to hang these banners for you, but please be aware of these guidelines:

All banners MUST BE made of blow through material.  Flat vinyl banners will not be hung.  Smilies are not acceptable.
All banners must be grommeted on all four sides.  Grommets must be placed on 18″ centers.
Our crew chief or rooftop supervisor has the final authority on any banners hung on our structures.

All banner art should be above center.  The most common banner placements are teaser banners (above the stage, on the downstage truss), backdrops and flybay banners.

Safety, Safety, Safety

Image of Safety Preparations at Live EventsAt In Depth Events, we are rabid about the safety of your talent and your attendees.  We make every effort to make sure our structures are safe, and we will always have a rooftop operator on site to make sure that all components are functioning properly.  In fact, in many cases, we’ll use portable weather stations mounted to the rooftop itself to monitor weather events in real time.

Your on-site operator will always be watching for one of four occurrences that will cause us to bring the rooftop down.

#1: Heavy rain.  Drizzle and small storms don’t affect us.  A raging downpour does.  If you see frogs coming from the sky and small rivers forming, we will bring the rooftop down.
#2: High winds.  Our roof systems are rated for moderate winds, but high winds will cause us to bring the roof down.  If you see Dorothy and Toto, it’s time for the roof to be lowered.
#3: Lighting in the area.  Lighting strikes within a few miles of our rooftops are bad news.  A metal structure higher than anything else around it is a natural conductor.  Unless you want your hamburger well done, we’re dropping the roof.
#4: Someone runs a car into one of our uprights.  Yes, this really has happened before.  If someone driving on your show site manages to hit the large aluminum structure in the middle of the event area, he’s probably hit it hard enough to impair the structural integrity.  The roof needs to come down and be checked.

In most cases, we can re-raise the roof and continue with the show once the danger has passed.  However, the rooftop operator has sole authority on lowering the roof and on re-raising it.  If your rooftop operator tells you it’s time to bring the rooftop down, there is a good reason for doing so.

Hopefully this blog has been informative for our event planner clients! For more information on In Depth Events and our event production capabilities, please Ask Us a Question today. We look forward to hearing from you and working with you on your event!