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Outdoor
Have an 'in-tents experience'

Outdoor Event Countdown

We urge you to use this information as a guide only. Often the choices you make in developing your plan will enable you to make more specific choices later on. Use this timeline in conjunction with the information provided on our “Before you Begin Planning your Outdoor Events”.

12 Months Ahead

  • Determine your budget - How much are you willing to spend on the overall event?
  • Determine where the event will take place
  • Determine when the event will take place - Time of year / Day or evening event / Weekday or weekend
  • Determine approximate number of guests. This will help you calculate the total square footage you will require for your event.
  • Determine type of event – sit down dinner or cocktail party. This will help determine the total square footage you will require for your event.
  • Get a quote on tenting and check the availability. Perhaps the most important factor to consider when planning an outdoor event is the weather. You may require tenting to protect your guests from the sun or rain. Heating may be necessary for an evening gathering in summer or an early spring or fall event. Tenting will offer protection from the elements, but if it is snowing outside, it is difficult to make the tent feel like another room in your house. In our climate, each season dictates different requirements
  • Research any possible permits/licenses that may be required. What is needed to apply? How long does the process take. Will the tent company handle the permits for you?

8 Months Ahead

  • Confirm tenting with tent rental company. Check the reservation and cancellation policy for all tents, tent accessories and heaters. In most cases at least 50% is required at the time of booking and is non refundable.
  • Determine a theme if your event is going to have one.
  • If you are planning to theme this event you will need to determine your theme at an early stage so you can tie the theme into all your plans - ie. Invitations, rentals, decor, and food.
  • Seek Proposals from event suppliers caterers (see select your caterer guidelines),florists or photographers

6 Months Ahead

  • Determine Menu
  • Book rentals – all other reception and ceremony rentals
  • Book entertainment
  • If you are creating a themed event, you should also get a proposal from a decor/prop company
  • Create your guest list

3 Months Ahead

  • Finalize reception arrangements
  • At this point you will not have you exact number of guests because the invitations have just gone into the mail. When making rental and catering arrangements we recommend reserving for your maximum number of guests, numbers can be reduced closer to the date once RSVP’s have been received.

*maximum number of guests – assuming all guests that received an invitation will attend.

2 Months Ahead

  • Conduct site inspection with rental company and caterer to design layout and flow. The tent rental company will use this site inspection to assess the space available, make recommendations and attempt to eliminate any possible problems
  • Do you need a floor under your tent? (a kitchen tent will require a floor!)
  • Book a florist or décor company

6 Weeks Ahead

  • Apply for necessary licenses and permits
  • Consider your power requirements. Can the caterer access your power easily and will there be enough to support the rental equipment, heaters and lighting?

4 Weeks Ahead

  • Send out invitations (unless it is a wedding then invites should be mailed earlier)

1-2 Weeks Ahead

  • Call guest who have not RSVP’d
  • Finalize number of guests with the rental company (require a minimum 48 hours notice for all changes)
  • Finalize number of guests with the caterer (require a minimum of 72 hours notice depending on the menu)
  • Confirm all details with those providing professional services ie. florist, photographer etc.
  • Finalize seating arrangements
  • Prepare a production schedule detailing when each suppliers will be arriving with their product on site. This schedule may start as early as 2 days before the event (depending on the complexity of the installation)
  • Contact all neighbours, by phone or letter and inform them about your event, when it is happening
  • (date and time) and a phone number to contact you with any questions. This is a courtesy you should always extend!

3 Days Ahead

  • Cut the grass and make all last minute garden preparations.

2 Days Ahead

  • Arrange for tent installation if you are using them. (If the installation is complicated or a floor is being laid, the rental company may want to arrive 3 days before the event)

1 Day Ahead

  • Arrange for delivery of reception rentals – tables, chairs, linen etc.

Day of the Event

  • Stay on your production schedule for set up and delivery
  • Relax and enjoy the festivities