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Planning Events in an Uncertain World

Posted 4/22/2020 by 17.
Filed under: Event Planning | Wedding Planning |

It's real friends. 2020 has thrown everything from first birthday parties and graduations to weddings and funerals for a loop. No matter what you are celebrating, it's challenging to want to gather with your friends, family, colleagues or coworkers right now. For a LONG minute, everything was just flat out canceled or postponed. 

But life isn't canceled! And more than ever, we are all realizing how much we value each other. Whether you have a specific reason to celebrate, are making up for one you enjoyed virtually, or simply want to show your loved ones how much you've missed them, we are all ready to look forward to a happier, healthy future - one that includes hugs and handshakes!

Image: Rachel Waters | Design: Leslie Herring Events | Hair: Hello Love Salon | Makeup: Soul Beauty Salon | Venue: Dream Pointe Ranch

But who knows when that will be? Or what the time between now and then looks like? This post is the first in a series we are developing about planning events in the post-COVID-19 gathering environment. And why we can't predict exactly when or where that's going to happen, we are confident that it is and will do our best to support your planning processes.

So as you think about future celebrations, here are some tips to consider when planning events in an uncertain environment.

Plan with a professional event planner. You know, this is always our advice! But there are more unknowns right now than there have been in the past. Even if you have some experience in planning or executing events, this person should have more. They are intimately connected with the world of events and are making it a top priority to be educated in the environment as it affects you. They have strong relationships with the local vendor community that will benefit you in uncertainty. Their ability to reduce your planning stress in an uncertain time alone is invaluable!

When contingency plans do have to go into effect, no one is going to be more valuable to have in your corner than your event planner! Just ask anyone who has had to go through rescheduling their wedding in the last month. We promise this is a solid investment. If you need referrals, check out the work in our featured designer galleries or ask us for a referral tailored to your needs.

Image: Sarah Libby Photography | Design: Fete | Floral: XO by Haleigh Kenney | Venue: 21C Hotel | Gown: JJ Kelly Bridal

Plan realistically. You may need to rethink your ideal event for this scenario depending on how far out you are planning. This means, consider what, when, where, and who (vendors and guests) are the right fit to be involved. The closer you are planning to quarantine the more important it is that you look for venues that can allow you to spread out and have open-air gathering environments. You may need to plan for a more intimate guest count or rethink your entertainment strategy as well.

Be prepared to contingency plan for alternative dates and scenarios. This is another plug for wedding planners. You may also want to seek event insurance that could help you cover out of pocket costs in those scenarios. Make sure your plans align realistically with your vendors' cancellation and rescheduling policies. You can find out more about our current policy here!

Plan confidently. Don't wait to secure your preferred dates and services. Popular, reputable vendors who previously booked dates early have had to reschedule weeks or even months worth of existing clients, making future dates even more in demand. And, in order for the small businesses that make up most of the event industry to flourish, we all need you to help us confidently plan the future as well by securing your anticipated dates as soon as you are committed to them.

Be honest with your vendors about your contingency plans and be clear about how their policies dovetail with your own plans. Then, take the advice of the trusted professionals you've surrounded yourself with and plan confidently, knowing that everyone is doing their best to create workable, beautiful scenarios that will meet your needs!

Plan intelligently. This isn't the time to cut corners! Make sure you prioritize your event investments to get the best of what's important to you. Make sure you choose to work with reputable, trustworthy vendors! We want you to shop local, shop small and shop smart.

Experience matters here. It will be evident in each vendors' ability to meet health and safety standards, as well as guarantee the ability to fulfill your contract. Marianne's Rentals has been in business for almost 35 years and has the equipment, manpower, and financial stability to ensure that they can meet your needs!

Image: Sarah Libby Photography | Design: Inspire Events | Floral: Trochta's Flowers | Venue: Plenty Merchantile | Catering: Abbey Road Catering | Hair and Makeup: Marlo Haus | Entertainment: OKC Entertainment

Communicate clearly. It's going to take a while for our society to find a new normal and for everyone, including your guests, to feel really comfortable with social gatherings. Now, more than ever, it's important to clearly communicate how you've thought through issues that could affect vendors and guests. Again, depending on how far out your event date is, it's considerate to find clever ways to communicate that you've thought through your gathering size, space and safety and that you are utilizing reputable vendors whose standards of sanitation and professionalism can be relied upon to provide everyone with a healthy experience. Make sure you work closely with your vendors to be SURE that their standards meet your expectations for your event. To learn more about how Marianne's Rentals has raised our already industry exceeding bar for event rental equipment, you can look here! 

Want more? We're excited about bringing helpful, new ideas to you in the event industry. Subscribe to the blog and follow us on our social channels for updates to this series as well as product highlights and updated information. If you've made it this far, this post touched just briefly on a several things we are going to go into further and we'll be showing you how rentals can help solve some of your post-quarantine event quandaries!