Definitions / Tips
At The Main Event, we ask our clients a lot of up-front questions before making recommendations. So, here are a list of commonly asked questions, as well as some thoughts, to get you started. If you would like additional ideas, feel free to submit a question directly to us, or if you intend on going it alone, use our planning check-list as a guide.

Adult Activities: Do you have a resource for adult activities which will appeal to your guests? Is your group an active group? Or do they prefer quiet activities.

Audio / Visual: What equipment will you need for your presentation? Microphones - hand held or podium microphones? Will you need a VCR and TV? Screen? Slide projector? Overhead? CD or tape player system?

Back-up Plans: Do you have an alternative plan for: Outside event in case of inclimate weather? If the entertainment doesn't show up? If the caterer runs out of food? if the audio-visual equipment doesn't work? A medical emergency?

Children's Activities: Do you know how to find games and activities which appeal to children? Will they be properly supervised and safe? Will you need additional supplies?

Decorations: How important are decorations to your event? Do you need some large props or staging to complement your theme? Do you want balloons or flowers? Will you require signage?

Entertainment: Do you know where to go to hire the entertainment appropriate for your event? Are you familiar with the entertainers? Do they fit with your theme? Do they have references? Will the noise interfere with what you are wanting to accomplish? Might it interfere with other people at the same venue?

Giveaways: Will you provide giveaways for each of your guests? Think about pictures - people enjoy having a picture of themselves at an event. Do you have a supplier lined up? Will they be delivered on time?

Food / Catering: Will the food and beverage needs be handled by the venue? Or will you need to select an outside caterer? What type of menu do you want? Who will select it? Will you have a bar? Will it be an open bar ... or a cash bar? Are you familiar with the quality of food and service of the company? Will their servers be dressed appropriately for your event? Will they have enough food? Will you have a need for menus for special diets?

Invitations: Who will design your invitation? They are the beginning of the excitement for those attending your event. They should fit the theme. Do you have a mailing list? What are your deadlines for printing, mailing and RSVPs?

Liability Insurance: Do all of your vendors have liability insurance? Have they provided you with a certificate?

Lighting: Would you like to have a continual light show? Do you want various items in the room lit, such as the stage, the buffet, the bars? Do you work with a reputable lighting company? Will they install and remove all the equipment in a timely fashion? Will someone stay throughout the event to operate the lights? Have you talked with the venue about the lighting you need? Will you need a spyder box?

Location: There are many factors which help to determine if a location is appropriate. Is your event formal? Casual? What facilities are available which can accommodate the number of people who will attend? What is your budget? Will you need a dance floor? Will you have large displays which use space? Are there additional service charges for using the particular location?

Objective: Consider why are you having this event? Is it for teambuilding? A sales meeting? A grand opening? To honor someone? Celebrate meeting a goal? Your company's annual dinner? Selecting and understanding the objective will play an important role in determining the appropriate theme.

Pictures / Video: Do you know where to find a good photographer? Have you checked references? Will you be needing photos as a record of the event? Or will you be using them in publications, such as an annual report?

Props / Staging: Will you have them built? Or will you rent stock pieces? Or a combination of both? Does it fit your theme? Will it be installed when you need it?

Rental Items: Are tables and chairs furnished at the venue? Or will they need to be rented? Will you need to rent linens? For an outside event, will you need a tent? Lighting for night time events? Will it be hot or cold outside? What can you do to make it more comfortable, in the event of unexpected weather? Will you use china or plasticware? Will your equipment be delivered at no extra charge? Will it be delivered when you need it?

Security: Will security be required? Do you have a reputable source to work with?

Timeline: A timeline is needed in order to guide you through the various steps required to make your event the success you desire. Often times, starting with the event date first and working backwards with each previous step will tell you how much time you need to allow to plan your event.

Transportation: Will people be flying in from other cities? Airline transportation arrangements will need to be made. Transportation from the airport to the hotel needs to be arranged for. Additional transportation during their stay to various events or activities should be scheduled. Will you need buses to transport groups of people?

20's (Roaring): Great Gatsby style, Charleston, period clothing, cars, gangsters

50's, 60's or 70's Party: psychedelic, Beatles, Motown, disco - dress & dance the part.

60's Lounge Act: piano, vinyl chairs, shag carpet, lounge lizards, gold lame ... turns any venue into a Las Vegas lounge.

Broadway Musicals: Guys and Dolls, Annie Get Your Gun, Oklahoma, Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Tommy ... and the list goes on and on.

Cabaret: wonderful food and music, small intimate tales, darkened room...

Carnival: clowns, cotton candy, hot dogs, balloons

Cartoons: decor representing your favorite cartoon people

Casino Night: Everyone becomes a high roller!

Cruise Ship: fabulous food (buffet), decor from the Caribbean, entertainment in native dress

Field of Dreams: Transform your venue into that famous cornfield in Iowa

Futuristic: space age theme - Star Wars, Star Trek, Jetson's

Historical: go back in time with Presidents, inventors, authors, musicians .. the possibilities are limitless.

Holiday: any holiday ... St. Patrick's, Fourth of July, Halloween, Christmas

Hollywood: walk the walk of fame. Build your event around Hollywood - or one of thousands of movies.

Jazz: tributes to jazz greats, wonderful food, romance in the air

Mardi Gras: masks, beads, Cajun food, Dixieland band and fun!

Masked Ball: Mystery abounds! Formal attire, masks.

Mexican: enchiladas, tacos, piñatas, colorful clothes, authentic entertainment

Murder Mystery: guests are called upon to solve a murder who-done-it. Question the suspects and come up with answer.

New York: the possibilities with the Big Apple are endless - Times Square, Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Central Park, Broadway.

Olympics: picnic theme - compete with your party goers

Oriental: wonderful food, music, scenery ... transport your guests to the far east.

Outerspace: spaceships, astronauts, meteors, stars, comets, ...

Polynesian: luau, grass skirts, hula dancing, roast a pig, leis

Rodeo: barbecue, boots, lassos, calf roping, bronco riding, bareback riding

Safari: surrounded by animals, jeeps, a trek into Africa

Sports: golf, tennis, football, basketball ... you get the idea

Street Fair: jugglers, caricature artists, magicians, fortune tellers, mimes ...

Teambuilding: interactive games encourage teamwork to achieve team cohesion

Train Rides: Have your party on a train

Treasure Island: pirates, ship, treasure chests ... recreate the atmosphere of the days of Black Beard and Captain Hook.

Undersea: sunken treasure, fish, seahorses, shells, mermaids, ...

Western: country dance lessons, barbecue