Sometimes all planning duties rest with one individual and this can be helpful a particular step is less likely to be missed and one person has the entire vision for the project.  Sometimes many individuals are involved in the process in order to share the workload and increase buy-in by the team or other groups.

Some things to remember:

  • Stakeholders are responsible for the wellness of the organization not the management of events
  • Separate event planning from the other activities/work of the organization
  • The event coordinator from last year may have already started your event plan by reserving a location.  They may have left a blue print for the event they planned; this does not have to be the blue print for your event. When moving forward your event, take into consideration members current skill levels and passions, and follow the energy of the current environment.
  • Build an inclusive planning committee. Invite community leaders, alumni, and faculty/staff members to participate.

The Event Chair is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee, setting meetings and agendas
  • Supporting the committee to develop the goals and theme for the event
  • Appointing sub-committees (see orange highlighted sub-sections below for committee options)
  • Educating sub-committee chairs on their roles, responsibilities and process
  • Creating an event plan
  • Working with the organization's current budget, advising the Event Committee and Sub-committees on available funds and process
  • Supporting the creation of a Funding Plan
  • Creating a comprehensive event time line incorporating sub-committee time lines
  • Coordinating and supporting the flow of information/communication between committees
  • Setting facilities meeting, communicating the event overview and having sub-committees define their needs regarding the facility
  • Proofing all Marketing and Press Releases
  • Signing off on all funding plans in advance of any expenditure with the organization treasurer
  • Creating an environment for fun and success
  • On the day of the event:
    • Track Progress of all committees
    • Address all challenges in a timely manner
    • Communicate all changes to facility managers and committee chairs
    • BE AVAILABLE
    • Direct day beginning to end, set-up to exit.
  • Evaluating the Event Plan
  • Thanking all of the participants and special guests

The Event Committee is made up of the Event Chair, Sub-Committee chairs, and interested organization and community members. They are responsible for:

  • Creating a comprehensive event plan including goals/desired outcomes and theme of the event
  • Creating and agreeing on a comprehensive funding plan, inclusive of all estimated expenses of the sub-committees
  • Communicating regularly on the progress of the sub-committees
  • Approving all sub-committee decisions, i.e. program, food, marketing plan
  • Determining how to solicit/raise additional funds if needed
  • Setting ticket cost and process
  • Supporting sub-committees
  • Being available at all times during the day of the event
  • Participating completely during the event
  • Event evaluation and follow up

When assigning committee responsibilities take into account:

  • The work load of the committee
  • The availability of the committee for involvement on the day of the event
  • The number of members/volunteers available to help

It is okay to have:

  • The Event Chair be the Marketing or Funding Chair
  • Organization President or leader be the Marketing or Funding Chair

It is not okay to have:

  • The Event Chair be the President or leader of the organization
  • The Event Chair, President or leader of the organization to be the Food or Program Chair

 

Programming

The program is the heart of an event. The program content will allow the event goals to be met as well as communicate the theme. A program can focus on one performance, or it can incorporate many different performances and media presentations.

What components will be used in the program will be suggested by the program committee and determined by the event committee. It is the job of the program committee to identify and secure what is needed.

When determining the program, these items should be taken into consideration:

  • Audience- who will be participating. Keep presentation relevant and interesting to the audience
  • Venue- where the event is located often dictates possibilities for the program
  • Event theme/goals- the program content must be in alignment with the overall event theme and goals
  • Available money- what resources can be made available to fund/create the program
  • Available time- how long is the actual program component of the event
  • Committees available time- to secure/create the program
  • Technical support- for media development

The Chair of the Program sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee
  • Setting meeting times, rehearsal times, and agendas
  • Supporting the development of a program plan
  • Communicating the program plan to the Event committee
  • Identifying needed human and monetary resources
  • Creating a planning time line
  • Assigning task to committee members
  • Coordinating performer contracts and program budget
  • Communicating all technical needs to facility at facility meeting
  • Coordinating rehearsals and stage management
  • Welcoming all performers
  • Trouble shooting during program
  • Leading an evaluation after the event
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Program Committee is responsible for:

  • Creating a program plan
  • Contacting/Contracting with performers
  • Creating/Accessing all needed media
  • Creating a performance schedule/script
  • Work with Event committee to develop guest program
  • Identify and communicate all technical needs
  • Be stage hands, MCs, stage managers
  • Host Green Room

 

Program Planning Priorities Check List

Program Committee Priorities

  • ___ Develop goals for entertainment
  • ___ Choose a Director of Entertainment and Programming
  • ___ Develop a budget for committee
  • ___ Establish and create a backwards timeline for program planning
  • ___ Brainstorm possibilities of entertainment
  • ___ Present ideas to Event Committee
  • ___ Contact all performers, assess needs
  • ___ Meet with facility staff
    • Determine room set-up
    • Determine light and sound needs
    • Determine equipment needs
    • Determine door control, security, and other personal needs
  • ___ Complete contracts for all performers
  • ___ Arrange for payment to performer (Purchase request)
  • ___ Script the entire performance
    • What will be the sequence of events?
    • Will you have MCs? How will they participate?
    • How will light and sound play a part?
    • Prepare a written script for the stage managers, light and sound operators
  • ___ Plan logistics, and assign tasks for event night
    • Who will be there, when?
    • Who will greet the performers?
    • Who will keep the show moving along?
    • Where will the performers dress?
    • Will you be providing food for the performers?
  • ___ Rehearsal

 

Day of the Event Priorities List

  • ___ Meet with the Event Coordinator
  • ___ Map out the Day
  • ___ Troubleshoot
  • ___ Confirm arrival of Entertainers
  • ___ Confirm light and sound are set

 

Funding

Identifying what you will need to support the goals and theme of your event is critical to the success of the event. Most organizations have an event budget. Your event may need only this amount or you may identify the need for more money.

Here are some things to consider:

  • Your current budget is only a starting place
  • Other sources of funding are available if you are willing to do the work to get it
  • You can charge an admission fee to cover additional expenses for your event

The Chair of the Funding sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Advising the Event Committee and sub-committees on available funds and process
  • Creating a Funding Plan/Budget
  • Signing off on all funding plans in advance of any expenditure with the Event Chair
  • Setting time-line for purchases and paperwork submission for all committees
  • Creating Purchase Requests
  • Tracking all expenditures
  • Evaluating the Funding Plan
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Funding sub-committee is made up of the Event Chair, Sub-Committee Chairs, and the Organization Treasurer. They are responsible for:

  • Creating and agreeing on comprehensive funding plan inclusive of all the estimated expenses of the sub-committees
  • Determining how to solicit/raise additional funds if needed
  • Setting ticket cost and process
  • Reporting ticket information to Marketing sub-committee
  • Monitoring expenses in each sub-committee and reporting any overages or shortages

 

Decorations

Decorations create the environment for the event. The environment can convey culture, mood, or an attitude, and is instrumental in meeting goals and communicating the theme. Table center- pieces, serving line set-up, back drops and stage decorations all add to the environment.

When determining the Decoration plan, these items should be taken into consideration:

  • Stage Set-up
  • Food Area Set-up
  • Colors
  • Costumes
  • Lighting
  • Room capabilities and limitations

The Chair of the Decorations sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee
  • Setting meeting times and agendas
  • Supporting the development of a Decorating plan
  • Communicating the Decorating plan to the Event Committee
  • Identifying needed human and monetary resources
  • Creating a planning and decorations time line
  • Assigning tasks to committee members
  • Communicating with the Facility
  • Schedule preparation and decorating times
  • Communicating the need of volunteers to Volunteer Committee Chair
  • Overseeing the prep and decorating
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of the Decorating plan
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Committee is responsible for:

  • Creating a Decorating Plan
  • Identifying needed supplies
  • Identifying where products can be purchased
  • Purchasing products
  • Making, building, creating decorations
  • Decorating
  • Clean-up after event
  • Securing reusable decorations

 

Volunteers

Volunteers are critical to the success of an event. By supporting the work of the food, program, decorating and marketing sub-committees volunteers help complete the committee’s workforce.
Some things to consider:

  • Volunteers are future members and leaders
  • Volunteers expect to do things, let them
  • Communication is key to success

The Chair of the Volunteer sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee
  • Setting meeting times and agendas
  • Supporting the volunteer needs of other sub-committees
  • Communicating the Volunteer plan to the Event Committee
  • Identifying needed human resources
  • Creating a volunteer committee time line
  • Assigning tasks to volunteers
  • Scheduling volunteer times
  • Confirming volunteer times with volunteers and committee chairs
  • Send a reminder the day prior to the scheduled activity
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of the Volunteer plan
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Committee may support:

  • Decorating
  • Set-up
  • Kitchen production and Serving (if not handled by the caterer)
  • Venue clean up
  • Kitchen clean up
  • Booth staffing

 

Refreshments

Food has an international language of its own, an invaluable tool to meeting event goals, and is easily tied into any theme. Food can help convey culture and celebration, be a means for attracting participants or a way to provide sustenance. The food committee can choose to self-cater an event through the OSU Cultural Meal Support Program or hire an approved caterer. When determining how to move forward a food event consider these things:

  • The types of food desired, and a caterers ability to create authentic food
  • The groups ability to plan, produce and serve the meal
  • Theme and Goal of the organization and program
  • Skill level of committee members
  • Available funds
  • Available time before the event
  • Availability of raw food products

The Chair of the Food sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee
  • Setting meeting times and agendas
  • Supporting the development of a Food plan; menu, recipes, production schedule, serving plan, clean up plan and coordinating with the efforts of the caterer
  • Communicating the Food plan to the Event Committee
  • Identifying needed human and monetary resources
  • Creating a planning, production and serving time line
  • Assigning tasks to committee members
  • Communicating with Student Involvement or OSU Catering
  • Schedule production and serving times
  • Communicating the need of volunteers to Volunteer Committee Chair
  • Overseeing the production and serving of the food
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of the Food plan
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Committee is responsible for:

  • Creating a Food plan, that includes menu, recipes, production and serving plans
  • Developing grocery list or placing catering order
  • Grocery shopping
  • Production (prep, completion, packaging, transport)
  • Serving- set up, signage, training, portion control, serving
  • Serving area and kitchen clean-up

 

Marketing

A well-developed Marketing plan will create a buzz about the event and your organization. The culture/environment of OSU, the history of the event, a small display in the Barometer and word of mouth will fill the seats. A good buzz will increase member moral, build membership and allow the OSU community to celebrate the work that you do.

When determining the Marketing Plan, these items should be taken into consideration:

  • Theme and Goal of the organization and program
  • Skill level of committee members
  • Available money
  • Available time before the event
  • Various Marketing techniques; print ads, flyers, posters, press releases, activities
  • Headline performers
  • History of the event

The Chair of the Marketing sub-committee is responsible for:

  • Convening a committee
  • Setting meeting times and agendas
  • Supporting the development of a Marketing plan
  • Communicating the Marketing plan to the Event committee
  • Identifying needed human and monetary resources
  • Creating a planning timeline
  • Assigning tasks to committee members
  • Proof-reading all materials with the Event Coordinator
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of the Marketing plan
  • Thanking all of the participants

The Committee is responsible for:

  • Creating a Marketing plan
  • Reserving bulletin boards, table tent locations
  • Creating flyers, posters, tickets
  • Writing press releases
  • Arranging for interviews by news reporters, prior to and day of event
  • Including ticket information on all advertising
  • Hanging posters on campus and the surrounding community
  • Documenting activities day of event