How to Organize a Community Festival

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How to Organize a Community Festival. A community festival is a wonderful way to connect local citizens and boost your town's image. You can bring volunteers together to organize a fun day of activities for all ages. It's a huge undertaking, but with careful preparation, you can plan a successful event. Break your community festival planning into steps, and start planning months ahead of time. You'll feel incredibly proud when you pull it off.

Decide what type of community festival you will organize. You may be hoping to get residents more involved in community volunteer efforts, or perhaps you want to raise money for a local scholarship project. A clear goal will help you explain the project to others.

Form a committee of interested community members. You need people who are good at the big picture, as well as those who can organize well and carry through with each detail. Find someone who has experience with public relations and who can work with local media to get publicity for the festival. It's a good idea to involve community leaders and politicians. Once they are personally invested in the event, they will be more likely to promote it.

Check with city hall and your police department to find out what the permitting and other requirements are for holding a community festival. You may need permits and security. If you sell food, you will probably have to get approval from your health department.

Find a great location for your festival. A community park will offer many amenities, such as restrooms and shade trees. A school parking lot is another possibility, but you may need to pay the school district for use of the grounds.

Pick a theme for the festival. This will make it easier for everyone involved to decorate and plan booths. Organize a variety of events around the theme. You can have a 5K race, a raffle, games and entertainment. Local bands will help draw crowds.

Set a reasonable budget. You may need money up front to pay for permits and rentals, but it's possible to get it without too much trouble. You can rent booth space to local merchants and vendors who sell arts and crafts. Churches, school clubs and community organizations may want to purchase booth space for fundraisers.

Organize everything down to the last detail. There's no such thing as too much planning when you're in charge of a huge event.

Tips & Warnings

  • Working with volunteers can be touchy. Remember that you'll be dealing with people who have many different agendas.
  • If you're nervous about planning a big event, start small. Try organizing a festival just in your neighborhood.

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