Oh, the joys of planning a sorority event.
I’ve planned two major events and at least 5 mixers for my sorority. I’ve also contributed to the planning of other events.
I honestly do not even know where to begin this entry. I guess by saying, I feel as though planning a sorority event is much more complicated than planning other events, such as a wedding. There are so many restrictions, rules, and different people approving everything. I’m going to go over different things that I went through to get to the finished result. 🙂
MOOLAH: With any event, you need to figure out what kind of budget you have to work with. Now with sororities, you don’t really have the best budget. You’ve got to work with what you’ve got! It’s extremely important to make sure you keep track of all expenses, that way you know how above or below the budget you are. My chapter requires that we fill out an expense sheet on excel. This helps tremendously with keeping my spending organized.
Pick a Date: Picking out a couple dates can make it easier to narrow down your venue selection. When planning an event it is important to look at the dates you’ve picked out and see if there are major conflicts. When planning Date Party this fall, I had to go with my 2nd date choice because my first choice fell on the weekend of an important leadership conference.
Ven-Who? Ven-YOU!: There are many things to consider when looking for the perfect venue for your event. Can their rooms hold your expected capacity? Are they in your budget? Do they cater? Do they allow you to bring in your own food/beverages? Is it presentable? Can you bring in decorations? Do they decorate or let you pick out linens? Research and visit more than just one venue. Then compare and see if they have your dates available. CAREFULLY look over the contract and make sure you know what you are paying for. My advice is to make a list and take it with you when you meet with the venue.
You want to try to book the venue WAY in advance. The sooner you book it, the less you have to worry about and the more likely they will have your date available. So, get to bookin’!
Paper Planes: Man, I would’ve loved to have taken all the paper work and just shoot them into the trash as paper planes! For my specific chapter, I had to keep up an event planning sheet and an expense sheet. Though it feels like a pain in the butt to do, it’s really helpful. Now, I also had to gather paper work for the venue including the contract stating everything that our Nationals expects, plus copies of the venues insurance and liquor licenses (if alcohol was being served at the event). It’s always good to make copies of all the paperwork and keep them filed.
WickaWickaDeeJAY: Now for the music! The music can make or break the event. When you are looking for a DJ, I would recommend sitting down and talking to them and also going to see them at a gig. Make sure you find out how much they charge and whether they have their own equipment. It may even be at your best interest to make up a contract, if they do not already have one.
At one of my events, we hired my friends brother and his friend to DJ. We had talked to them and everything sounded great. Then a day before the event, they called and told us their speakers didn’t work. Boy, did that just add to my stress level. At that point it was their job to fix their problem and show up with working speakers…and thankfully they did. However, they showed up with more people than what was expected. PLUS, these unexpected “DJ’s” were not dressed appropriately and called my advisor a not so nice name. UNACCEPTABLE. I wanted him kicked out. Another issue was that the DJ’s would not play any of the music that was on the request list or any music that people were requesting at the event.
Whoever you book for a DJ should realize that it’s not their party its YOURS. If you want something played and the DJ has it…they better play it. They are getting paid to serve you, not themselves.
Can you tell how much these “Dj’s” frustrated me? haha. Well, at this past event we booked a phenomenal DJ. You can check out DJ Jag on facebook. Cincinnati has a great scene for Dj’s. You’ve got to keep in mind that if they DJ at Bars/Clubs you’re going to have to pay them at least what they would make if they were at the Bar/Club. Which could get pricey. Feel free to ask me for DJ names and contacts!
Well, this post is getting pretty lengthy, so I will leave it at that. I’ll touch more on other things in future entries. Hope this helps!