It's no easy feat to have a smooth event from start to finish. As it were, anyone even remotely affiliated with the wedding industry will have no shortage of horror stories about an event gone wrong.

Whether you're a rookie in the catering and event planning business or a hardened veteran of the field, you'll immediately know that the most complicated part of an event is managing a timely setup and tear down.  However, this doesn't mean that it can't be done. Keep on reading to learn all about the top tips and tricks of how to setup and tear down an event as smooth as expensive champagne.


Know Your Battleground (Otherwise Called the Venue)


It's all great to have an amazing event planned out on paper. But, if you're not familiar with your venue before the event itself, you'll undoubtedly run into some issues.

This is an easy fix. Go visit the venue and familiarize yourself with the terrain before the event. A quick visit can be immensely helpful for figuring out the best ways to use space when it's time to clean up.

Start marking the best routes for taking the garbage out after the event, as well as the best areas to dismantle any equipment you'll bring along to the venue. 

Moreover, being able to determine where to park utility vehicles or even the optimal place for your dumpster will save you a tremendous amount of time on the big day.


Map out Your Event


A great way to cut down on your setup and tear down time is mapping out the event from start to finish with your venue in mind.

For example, if you're responsible for catering, you'll need to have a firm grasp over where you'll need to set up and where your garbage will go. Also, clear out the path between your event items and where they'll be stored and transported.

This will make achieving a clutter-free event space a reality, thus, cutting down on time wasted trying to shove the garbage between narrow tables and chairs.


Keep a Neat and Clean Event from Start to Finish


Let your event debris and clutter build up without cleaning it up regularly will cause you to spend a lot of time during tear down doing nothing but cleaning up spilled gunk and coagulated food. Neither you nor the guests will have a good time.

In order to keep the dirt contained, make sure to have clearly-identified places for the guests to get rid of waste. Furthermore, you must have a plan for removing garbage both during and after the event.

For instance, assign the cleaning duties to a specific person and set up a centralized location for collecting garbage. With a previously-set schedule of sweeping in and cleaning things up frequently, you'll find the cleanup process at the end of the event to be much simpler and time-efficient.


Setup and Tear Down Safety Tips


Nothing can ruin an event as badly as a preventable safety-related accident, nevermind the added time wasted in order to fix things up.

With some precaution and safety procedures set in place before the event, you can save yourself some tremendous costs and wasted time.


Setup Safety Tips


If you're using a generator, make sure you follow all the safety procedures regarding hooking the generator up before the event.

If the event calls for table lighting, make sure you get rechargeable electric tea lights. You don't want to deal with horrific cases of children getting hurt or the curtains catching fire in your event.

Don't leave the equipment lying around haphazardly during the setup, because it's a plain tripping hazard that could be easily avoided.

If the setup requires the use of ladders, put instructions for a minimum of two people on each ladder. One person can go up the ladder, and the other has to hold it steady.

Make sure to rope off the set-up area before moving any sort of equipment around.

Any display's entrance or exit needs to have a clear path and far away from vehicle traffic areas.

No idle hands or spectators should be around your display during the set-up process. They won't be familiar with any sort of safety protocol and can cause a disturbance in the flow of the setting up personnel.

If you're bringing a support vehicle to the event, park it as close to the set-up area as possible.


Event Activation Safety Tips


During the event, you'll have to keep a very close eye on the weather. Weather safety is crucial, even if you're event is going to be indoors. The weather can greatly affect the guests, so have multiple plans in place for different weather scenarios.


Be aware of unsupervised children during the event.


Depending on the type of event and the invited guests, be aware that additional security personnel may be needed. Make sure to work with your security partner to have a solid security plan in place as well as decide upon the appropriate number of security personnel.


Get Help for Clean-Up Time


The more hands-on-deck you have during the final cleanup time during tear down, the faster it will get done.

Depending on the event and its size, you'll either need to have a professional crew handle the cleanup process or you'll need a couple of friends and volunteers for medium-sized events (or smaller).


Ready to Set up the Event of a Lifetime?


Event planning isn't a job for the faint of heart. However, once an event is up and roaring, seeing your event running smoothly after tremendous amounts of work can bring a high like no other.

Now that you know all about the top tips and tricks for setup and tear down of events in the most time-efficient way possible, you're ready to take on the world.

Nevertheless, there is still so much left to learn about event planning from creating incredible candle displays to choosing a unique restaurant theme.  Keep the learning going by checking out our inspiration corner for the latest tips and tricks of the industry.