Are you planning a day event, or maybe a multi-day event, then you’ll need to find a site. This guide will help you create a checklist to guide you in evaluating a site. The guide covers various aspects which you might need to consider when looking at new sites, you can use it as a checklist to make sure it fulfills all of your needs.
What kind of event are you planning on hosting?
What you need to determine before you start looking at sites is what you are going to need the site for. Is there going to be a quest, a tournament, or maybe a cultural event such as a Dragon Master? What you are looking for will determine how you evaluate a site. What might work for one event might not work for another. It will also be helpful to determine your approximate attendance before you start looking at sites.
Is This a Day Event or Multi-Day Event?
It’s important to know if you are looking at a site for a single day event or for a multi-day event. While there is a lot of overlap, there are additional requirements for multi-day events which are covered in the following sections.
What type of fighting?
For most events there will be fighting; you need to determine if there is enough room to allow for the estimated attendance to ditch. Is there an open field, is it cleared enough to allow people to fight safely, is there shade incase it’s a hot day?
If you have a quest at the event it’s important to know if the site has what you need for a successful quest. While you might be able to get away with just using a field with a few trees, it’s more than likely going to be a better quest if you have terrain which will hold the questers’ attention. A variety is desirable. Trails interspersed with open areas, which allows for a conflict are usually the best. It’s important to talk with those who are running the quest to get an idea of how they see the flow of the quest going and asking them for a wish list of what they would like to see out of a site.
Will there be a feast at your event? If so it’s important to know what the site has to offer in regards to food service. Will the cooking be done on site or off site? If off site, then you need to make sure that the site is close enough to the offsite kitchen to be viable.
If you plan on cooking on site, then it’s important to know exactly what facilities are available. Is there a kitchen or will you need to rent equipment? Some sites have grills which you can rent, but if they don’t you’ll need to look elsewhere for equipment.
Is there an under covered area or building for you to set out your food. It’s nice to keep food out of the rain, or in the event that it’s a sunny day, keep it properly shaded.
Is there running water on site?
This might seem like a small detail, but it’s an important one. Running water will help with you food service, even if it’s been cooked off site. You can more easily wash your hands if you have running water. It also means that people will have water available to them on hot days.
If it does have a kitchen, it’s important to know exactly what that entails. Does it have a regular oven and stove top or is it industrial? Does it come with cooking utensils or will you have to provide your own? You may also want to make sure you know what the cleaning requirements are.
If there isn’t a kitchen you should check if any of the buildings or covered areas have electricity.
Chairs and Tables?
When it comes to the feast or just for hanging out and resting, are there chairs and tables available? If so, is there an additional rental cost associated with them or are they free? The idea of chairs extends beyond just the feast hall but also to the other areas being used, are there picnic tables for people to relax?
If this is a multi-day event will there be tent camping or does the site have cabins? If the site has cabins how many people will it hold and if they fill up is there still room for camping? Does the camping area overlap the play field, is there enough room for fighting after you set up tents? Is there electricity available to those people who need it to sleep? If there are cabins, do people need to bring their own mattresses?
It’s important that you also find out the capacity of the site. Will the size of the property meet your needs? Is there enough room for parking, does the capacity of the halls meet your needs? Are there enough bathrooms for the traffic you are anticipating, if not you might be able to rent port-a-potties.
What are the Costs?
Now that you’ve looked over the site and determined if it is usable you need to take into account the cost of the site. Lots of sites have different kinds of contracts. Some are a onetime fee, others you pay per person. You might also have cleaning deposits you have to deal with and/or have to purchase insurance to use the site which should be considered as part of the price of a site.
Is It Worth The Price?
Once you’ve gathered all the information, you have to compare the site costs to the amenities of the sites. Is it worth the price for what you are getting? Are you paying for something you don’t need? Can you augment a lesser site with rental equipment to tailor a site to you needs rather paying for a more expensive site that has everything ready to go?
Hopefully reading this guide has allowed you to create a checklist for when you are evaluating a site. There are many things you need to consider and I may not have covered all of them in this article. Even if I didn’t cover everything I hope the article got you thinking about what your site needs are and if a site will provide them.