Working with people is quite complicated; and when it comes to larger groups of people there is an entirely different ball game. We start the article with this statement because it’s important to understand that organizing an event is not just fun and games. There are a lot of moving parts and pieces that need to come together in order to make an event successful. From the people in charge of booking, to stage managers, location managers, partners, logistics teams, security, cleaning, ambulances, and many more; we all have the same goal: the well-being and safety of our participants. And that’s what brings us together and makes us function as a team: the fact that we find satisfaction in things done right, and the final result is the ultimate reward.
Organizing events during a pandemic is tough, not going to lie, but it’s not impossible. We have experience event planning, to start with, and we learned a lot from our experience last year. It’s like getting a level up: you’re able to successfully wrap up an event, and now the universe “throws” you yet another challenge. And yes, it’s a challenge that we’re more than willing to accept.
This pandemic has brought, along with it, a new set of rules and regulations, but we’re prepared to move forward, while respecting them. Specifically, in our world, these rules translate into new stages to go through before opening the gates of your event, logistical and organizational nature factors wise.
The places we choose must be spacious enough to be able to comply with any physical distancing rules. We scout locations, map and measure everything, make sketches, position elements such as stages and bars, mark exits, and then, every 2 meters, we imagine the people who could enter the festival. And that’s how we do it for each possible location. In addition to a location’s capacity, we also consider its “naturalness,” let’s say. In our scouting, we look for places where the Jazz in the Park audience doesn’t necessarily feel fenced in, as the current rules say, but rather sees the fences and delimitations as something meant to be, so that their experience is safe and cozy.
Access to events now has a brand new set of rules and regulations. Just showing your ticket at the entrance is so 2019, as we learned from Jazz in the Park Tiny Version, our event where we learned all the pandemic norms. Now, to enter an event, in addition to the basic ticket scan, you must go through a whole process: there is observational screening, thermometers, and streams of disinfectant. And all of this is happening for everyone’s safety: the safety of the organizing team, the performers, the volunteers, and most importantly, above all, for the safety of our audience. And yes, a year later, we’re having many more safety measures. We have the possibility to get vaccinated, there are rapid tests, and people who have recovered from the illness. And yes, we are open to any way and any that will make us feel safe this summer.
We used Jazz in the Park Tiny Version as an example because we consider it a model of best practices, a proof that events can really take place in a safe way without the number of infections increasing. In addition to access, we took into account many other things: throughout the event, our participants wore masks. We disinfected every seat every time someone got up from it. We gave people their own picnic blankets to avoid reusing anything. We marked every possible queue, from going to the bathroom to getting a drink from the bar. We had sanitation points in every corner of the event. We had plans, steps to follow, and rules to respect. And we are willing to do it over and over again to keep everyone safe.
This summer, we hope to earn your trust again, and to see each other In The Whole City because yes, we have thought of everything. We all need a moment of respite, a drop of normality, and we believe that events will help us immensely. Just like we saw people at Jazz in the Park closing their eyes and letting themselves be carried away by the music and the vibe of the moment. We think that’s when we can breathe a sigh of relief at the thought: “Oh, how I missed this!” Yes, we can do this!