Organising a family friendly event can seem like quite a task to undertake but the key to success is in the planning, so follow our top tips to ensure that your event is a big hit with the whole family!
Select your venue wisely. There are lots of things to consider when picking a venue for a family friendly event. For example, consider the following:
Easy to find and good access – The middle of a forest might be a lovely space, but parents won’t thank you when they have a trek to get to the event itself!
Plenty of parking – Make sure that there is adequate and convenient parking available. You don’t want to have families stressed out because they have had a battle to find anywhere to park before they have even reached the event.
Accessible – When catering for families it is essential that your venue is buggy and wheelchair friendly. Make sure that there are no steps for families to have to negotiate when moving around the event.
Signposting – Whether you are planning an indoor or outdoor event, it is important to make sure that your visitors can navigate their way around. Make sure that rooms, stalls and activities are clearly labelled and that there are signposts to direct people to them if necessary. Some larger events might require a map which can be printed in a programme if you choose to distribute one.
Make sure that you provide a range of options for food at your event, considering all ages. Some parents might object if the only option available is a burger van. Ensure that all the suppliers that you use have all the necessary food hygiene certification to ensure that all food and drink is prepared and stored safely and that they have suitable Stallholder Insurance in place.
Choose an entertainer who will appeal to all ages and make sure that you see them perform before you book them. Putting a family friend on the stage with a microphone might seem like a good idea, but make sure that they are good enough to put in front of a crowd first!
Make sure that you have toilet facilities available for adults and children and baby changing facilities will be a big hit! Consider hiring them if necessary. Facilities should be inspected regularly before, during and after the event to check supplies and cleanliness. Some venues will do this for you.
You might be planning your event with military precision, but families will find it difficult to follow a strict schedule. Ensure that there is plenty to do at your event with flexible opportunities for downtime, whether to sit and get something to eat or watch the entertainment that you have provided.
As we all know, there is nothing that you can do about the weather! If you are planning an outdoor event, make sure that you have a plan for all possible scenarios. It might be wise to have stall under gazebos – if it’s too hot then this will offer protection from the sun and provides protection from the rain if you get a downpour!
Make sure that you start with a budget in mind with a contingency budget to cover any unexpected costs that might arise. Should the worst happen, and someone has an accident at the event or the venue cancels at the last minute, the financial losses might be significant. Make sure that you get the necessary event insurance policy in place to make sure that you are protected.
Depending on the type of event that you are planning you might need permits or licenses. For example, some locations might require permission from the landowner or council and you might need a licence if you are playing music or selling alcohol. You need to be clear on any restrictions, for example you might only be able to play music until 11pm.
The insurance requirements for your event will depend on its size and number of people expected amongst other things. Financial losses in the event that someone attending your event makes a claim against you can be significant. So, should someone have an accident during the event or a guest claims that the food gave them food poisoning, make sure that you have a policy in place to protect you.
Take time to enjoy the event. You will have worked hard in delivering it so make sure that all of your efforts are rewarded!