By Meredith Parker
Summer! The word immediately evokes images of delicious backyard barbecues and lazy days spent lounging by the pool or at the beach. But for those of us in the event world, summer often means a busy event calendar and with that, creating a specialized packing list designed for extreme temperatures and erratic weather conditions. So, what’s the best way to approach this challenge?
First off, do yourself (and your back) a favor by selecting luggage that meets your needs. Think wheels and hands-free. Personally, I like to use a roller bag and I can’t live without my favorite backpack.
Now that you have your luggage sorted, turn your attention to technology. Take care of your tech and it will take care of you. Invest in a waterproof phone case and a cooling pad for your laptop or tablet. And before leaving home, download your favorite weather app(s). Personally, I am a big fan of Wunderground, Dark Sky, and RadarScope. And while we are talking tech, surprise and delight your hardworking event team by creating and downloading a summer-themed playlist to keep everyone musically motivated during long hours of load-in and strike.
Turning to the personal, prepare for both relentless heat and bone chilling rain (after all, we are event professionals and always considering worst case scenarios, right?). Pack and wear layers of breathable fabrics. Bring a headlamp and jacket for those pre-sunrise and post-sunset working hours. And bonus points if your jacket has reflective elements! Throw in a belt or fanny pack and don’t forget pants that have beltloops to easily carry an event radio, carabiner, etc. Grab your work gloves, sunglasses, hat, sunscreen, bug spray, lip balm with SPF and your insulated water bottle and portable electrolyte replacement. As for rainy conditions, I hope it goes without saying that you need to pack several pairs of waterproof shoes. Throw in your sturdiest rain gear, adhesive bandages, extra socks, wet wipes for a midday refresh on hot days and maybe a little Moleskin just in case. And last but certainly not least, pack yourself several masks in breathable fabric to comply with local Covid requirements.
Finally, you’d never leave home without packing your event essentials, right? For me, those essentials include Sharpies, a Leatherman (tucked away in checked luggage and out of the hands of eager TSA agents), a storage clipboard containing event master documents, and my contact list for my indoor relocation venue and vendors handling weather-specific items (EMS, weather-resistant signage, heaters, air conditioning units, etc.).
Now that your bags are expertly packed, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy summer traditions knowing that you are more than ready to tackle your busy event calendar!
Meredith Parker has been with Event 360 for over a decade and is the Event Production Manager for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day. She enjoys traveling with her husband, spending time with their six nieces and nephews and participating in local sprint triathlons.