Like many companies and organizations – event organizers are always looking for the next way to wow their crowd. Especially when the host is organizing an annual affair. Many times, this leads to the non-event venue. When planning an event, there are several reasons to choose a non-traditional venue. Yet, even though choosing a space that is not equipped for events can be exciting and opportunistic, it won’t be without its own set of hidden challenges.
We have catered in many unique situations such as parking garages and airplane hangars. Choosing space like this for an event essentially means no rules – the sky is the limit! And you’ll certainly have a one-of-a-kind experience if you go this route. But choosing a non-event venue will usually come at a bargain rate because of all the missing elements that won’t be included like at a traditional venue – and because it isn’t an event venue at all. It is a blank canvas that you can craft any event you hope to have on it.
What is your potential venue lacking? It could be restrooms, it could be water. A space not typically used for events will need a little TLC to make it event ready – and a few rentals to make it enjoyable. It might mean hiring a cleaning company to come in pre-event and post-event in order to leave the event as you found it – or better. You’ll also likely require some basic rentals that aid in the comfort of your guests such as restrooms, heating and cooling. Non-event spaces will always require the rental of chairs, tables, staging, lecterns, and lighting too – depending on the type of event you’re hosting. Another great question, does it have a kitchen?
What is the occupancy code for the building? Is it even coded? If it isn’t coded to have a large number of guests, submitting an event floor plan to the local fire marshal is a must. Don’t forget about the event insurance you’ll need too.
While unique venues are exciting, beware of the challenges that await you. Don’t let the unknowns scare you from choosing these types of spaces, but rather be prepare and catch the problems on the front end. And for those problems that surprise you, build a contingency into your budget to address them.