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Event Planning 101

Are you a new Pride organizer? Embarking on your first journey toward event planning? Planning an event can be overwhelming, especially if it's your first time. But don't worry, with a little bit of organization and attention to detail, you can successfully plan a successful event.



Whether you're organizing your very first Pride picnic, festival, or march, or if you're looking at hosting a smaller event to get your organization going, you can follow some of these basic event planning tips to ensure you get off on the right start:


1. Set a clear goal:

Before you start planning, make sure you have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish with your event. Do you want to raise funds for your own organization or another local charity or partner? Are you celebrating a special milestone? Or are you planning a simple social gathering? Having a clear goal will help you stay focused as you plan.


2. Create a budget: Determine how much money you have to work with and allocate your funds wisely. Consider costs such as venue rental, catering, entertainment, decorations, and marketing.


3. Ask for sponsorships or in-kind services:

As you plan your budget, keep in mind that many folks are more than happy to support a new Pride organization. Local small businesses, especially LGBTQ-owned businesses, often support a wide range of LGBTQ events and causes. Don't be afraid to reach out for help in the form of cash sponsorships or donated/in-kind services (like free or reduced rate venue rentals, catering, or entertainment).


4. Choose a venue: The location of your event is crucial, as it will impact everything from the number of attendees to the overall atmosphere. Make sure to choose a venue that is appropriate for your event and fits within your budget. For example, are you planning an all-ages event? If so, an LGBTQ bar or nightclub might not be the appropriate venue. Is your local climate often rainy, snowy, or unbearably hot? Perhaps an outdoor event isn't the right fit. Keep an open mind as you look for event venues.


5. Plan the details:

Think about all the little things that will make your event a success. This could include catering, decorations, entertainment, and any special touches that will make your event memorable. Remember, not every item you need for your event has to be purchased; keep in mind sponsorships and donations!


6. Invite guests and promote your event:

Once you have a date and location set, it's time to invite your guests. Consider using email or social media to reach a wider audience, or sending physical invitations for a more personal touch. You can also craft a press release to send to your local newspaper or other news outlets. The media is often keen to cover LGBTQ events and causes, especially if you're hosting your area's first-ever Pride event.


7. Post-event review:

After the emotional high of hosting an event, many event organizers forget one last crucial step: Reviewing how your event went! Take time after your event to sit with your team and review the highs, lows, and possible improvements for future events. Every event held is a chance for taking lessons learned and applying them toward improved events in the future.


By following these basic event planning tips, you'll be well on your way to planning a successful and memorable event. Good luck!


Are you a Pride organizer?

Are you a new Pride organizer? Or, perhaps you're a seasoned Pride veteran, but you've never heard of USAP or InterPride? Learn more about the benefits of membership with the premier national organization serving Pride organizers in the United States. One application. One fee. Two memberships. Join a national and international family of Pride!



Portions of this article were generated with the assistance of AI, with additions, revisions, and editing performed by a human writer.

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