We did, however, decide to go back to the play zone to see if they had a festival guide available for us to read. They didn’t, but they did have a site map. Much to our surprise and delight there was another part of the festival that we weren’t aware of. It was in the downtown area and some distance away! We followed the map to the downtown area and discovered the heart of the festival. In the downtown park two giant “Pumpkin” pyramids had been erected. They were full a hundreds of carved and lite up pumpkins! You could see the tops of the pyramids as we descended the hill to the downtown centre. It was wonderful to discover this important part of the festival. What a shame it would have been for us to have missed it!
The solutions for this festival and others are simple. Here are some suggestions:
- Strategically place directional signage at key entrance point to your town
- Prepare large site maps showing where all activities are taking place. To reduce or eliminate the cost of these signs sell advertising space on the signs
- Make sure you prepare enough signs and place them conveniently throughout the festival grounds
- Have an information booth or booths placed near to major festival entry points. There should be at least one at each site.
- Make sure you website site has a printable comprehensive site map. Also, make sure it is easy enough to understand for out-of-town visitors
- Print enough Site Plan Maps to hand out to visitors
- Have identifiable volunteers regularly walk through the festival grounds. Make sure they are well informed about the festival and the community.
I know I have said this before, but if you want to attract out-of-town visitors to your event, you have to make sure you plan for their needs. It is very difficult to sustain a festival or event, year after year, without attracting new attendees.