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Q for promoters- how do you approach a venue?

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Q for promoters- how do you approach a venue?

Old 08-29-10, 05:40 PM
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Q for promoters- how do you approach a venue?

Since I seem to have limited riding/racing avenues open in my area, I thought I'd help rectify that by organizing a ride or race in the area.
I've read the 'promoter' threads here on BF, I've read the guides from a couple of the racing organizations, and I have a background in event planning/hospitality and catering. So I've decided I'm now eminently qualified to host large sporting competitions that will rival the Olympics. Or at least 40-50 people in a parking lot.
Now I have a good idea of how to get started, but one think I'm curious about is how to approach the actual venues with my ideas.
My 1st location is for a crit. The course looks pretty decent- about 1 mile loop, 5 or 6 90 degree turns, a sweeper and a chicane.
The venue is privately owned, and the company is cycling friendly- they sponsor a charity ride team.

How do you make initial contact with a possible event site?
Email? phone? in person?

Do you approach it as a straight business venture, ie; "how much to rent the site" or do you pitch it from a charity/fundraising/we're just nice bicycle riders angle?

Do you expect a final answer on your first contact, or does it usually take multiple calls and a dog and pony PP show to the BOD?

I'm also going to join 1 or 2 of the local cycling clubs to expand my horizons and my volunteer pool. I've been on a couple of their rides and I'm sure there are a lot of good contacts to be found there. I don't think the riding club sponsors race however, the races seem to go through the shops.

Any thoughts,ideas or input are welcome.
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Old 08-30-10, 12:05 AM
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If you don't get any responses, PM CarpeDiemRacing or EventServices.
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Old 08-30-10, 04:05 AM
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I'd personally try to figure out who the charity team knows at the company that owns the property and get an introduction that way. We used the nice bicycle rider approach and talked a little about the kids who race. As far as offering to pay to use the roads, I'd not mention that at first. Its hard enough to break even and the amount you can realistically pay is small unless you are planning a big weekend event. We ended up paying the venue $25 a night for our series last year. Make sure you have the outline of insurance coverage to show the owner nothing will kill this faster than the fear of liability exposure.
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Old 09-14-10, 08:19 PM
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You're in San Antonio? Contact Voodoo76. He can give a good assessment of the course. He's ridden too many.

Ask the receptionist who best to speak to regarding the use of the property. The building and grounds may be owned by someone other than the tenant. Whomever answers the phone should know.

An email with a follow-up phone call works best.

As Snap says (above), make sure they know that USA Cycling covers all liability for the event you're proposing. Make sure they know you're not asking them for money. You just want to use their land on a quiet Sunday.

I always have good results when I stress the idea of getting kids/families on bikes. Sometimes that only means that I have an hour set aside for a kid's race/fun ride, but the intentions are more likely to resonate with them more than the real truth: you want to enable a bunch of crack-head cyclists to pursue their sick addiction.

I say that with love.

Never offer to pay money. You'll need it to pay for port-a-pissers.
Stress your history in event management.

See how it goes!

Good luck. You're a complete fool for taking this on! ha ha ha ha ha
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Old 09-14-10, 08:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Snap
I'd personally try to figure out who the charity team knows at the company that owns the property and get an introduction that way. We used the nice bicycle rider approach and talked a little about the kids who race. As far as offering to pay to use the roads, I'd not mention that at first. Its hard enough to break even and the amount you can realistically pay is small unless you are planning a big weekend event. We ended up paying the venue $25 a night for our series last year. Make sure you have the outline of insurance coverage to show the owner nothing will kill this faster than the fear of liability exposure.
And it was a blast. I wish that you were doing it this Fall. I'd make the drive from Gainesville for it again.

I really suck at/hate crits, so I need to do more of them. I will probably still suck at and hate them though even after doing a bunch more of them, but at $10 a pop it is a reasonable experience. At $30+ a pop it is kind of stupid.
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