The benchmark for "post covid" keeps creeping further and further away. So in the meantime, we event planners must do what we do best: plan safe events. We have all become experts over the last couple years in things we can personally do to keep safe, but planning covid safe events requires a bit more, well, planning. Below are 5 ways to host safer events.
We would be remiss if we didn't state that all of the planning you need to do should be based on your local health authorities guidelines. Here in BC, at the time of writing, these are the allowable events:
Organized indoor seated events can be held with a maximum of 50 people or up to 50% of the venue's total capacity, whichever is greater.
Indoor walk-through fairs and festivals including trade shows can be held at 100% venue capacity.
Organized outdoor seated gatherings can be held with a maximum of 5,000 people or up to 50% of the venue's capacity, whichever is greater.
Outdoor walk-through fairs and festivals like community fairs can be held at 100% venue capacity.
There are additional precautions for holding these types of events. Proof of Vaccination is required for the following events:
a gathering of more than 50 participants in an inside place for social, entertainment, dancing, choral, musical, recreational, gambling, arts or crafts, or business.
Additionally, masks must be worn in indoor spaces, and hand washing stations need to be available.
This information is from the BC CDC, be sure to check with your local health authority for information specific to your area and event.
It is our job as organizers to ensure that these health orders are followed and enforced. For more information about the requirements in BC, please click here.
As outlined above, the requirements for outdoor events allow for higher capacity. This is because, according to Prof Chris Whitty for the BBC "The evidence is very clear that outdoor spaces are safer than indoors."
Having events outdoors allows for bigger spaces between guests, better ventilation, and lower transmission.
There is a reason outdoor venues, patios, and open air concerts have gained popularity over the past year. And if you want to plan the safest event, consider moving outside.
Proper wayfinding has always been an important part of event planning, even more so when it comes to hosting Covid safe events. Some of the ways to reduce the risk is by guiding guests to keep their distance with signage and floor decals.
This also presents an opportunity to get creative and add to the theme of the event.
Worksafe BC has a comprehensive guide for creating a communicable disease safety plan. The gist of it is:
Creating and regularly reviewing a safety plan helps everyone stay on the same page. Covid is scary, so having a plan is an important step in keeping everyone safer. For more info on how to make a safety plan, click here.
This pandemic is always evolving. In order to stay safe, it's important to stay up to date on the latest news from reputable sources. Here are a list of local and international news sources.
There is a lot of information out there, some from unreliable sources. Help dissuade misinformation by staying informed.
This ish is scary. The event planning industry was the first to go and will be the last to come back, but that doesn't mean we can't plan safe smaller scale events in the meantime.
Follow our tips, and we hope you can feel better about gathering together, while staying apart.