Since when does the government affect an event planner? Surprisingly, since now!
As hopefully most of us are aware, the United States’ government has shutdown. Political views and funding aside, everyone is curious how they are going to be affected. Opinions tend to be either of the extremes. There are the people who believe the world is ending; you know them. The guy who thinks his food will stop being tested and he’ll get E-Coli and die? That’s him. But then there are also those who are dismissive of the issue, believing no one to be affected. The girl who thinks everyone is being dramatic until she goes to do some research for homework on a .gov site. That’s her.
The truth is everyone is going to see the effects of the shutdown and event planners are no exception.
In the tweet above you’ll find a Storify I’ve put together compiling the Twitter reactions to the closing of most National Parks as well as the National Mall. If you are a wedding planner or event coordinator with events scheduled at these locations, begin thinking ahead. Here are some common sense tips from yours truly.
1.) Check your budget: If the bride is upset and considering canceling, remind her of the non-refundable deposits already placed with the caterers, the venue, the photographer, and florist. Then consider the travel costs for relatives, the already mailed invitations, and the cost of therapy after having to cancel and re-plan an entire wedding. If you can’t afford to cancel, move on to solutions.
2.) Find a back-up location: Immediately. Coordinators all over will be doing the same. If you planned to have your event at a national park, is there a charming landscape nearby perhaps owned by a family? Make sure the new venue is somewhat close so attendees can be redirected easily. Be willing to cover costs or get with your purse string operator and find a way to cover them.
3.) Will the purpose and goal still be accomplished?: If at the end of the day the bride and groom were successfully married and his and her friends and family were there to see it, pat yourself on the back for a job well done. No one will say you did a bad job if the ultimate goal is accomplished and the clients are happy. If you have to relocate a promotional event for a client but are still able to spread awareness for their cause, congratulations!
Best of luck!