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Keys to organizing an event in times of pandemic

Life can finally return to some semblance of normal rhythm. Since the beginning of August, the Quebec government has authorized the presence of 250 people for events in public places.

This means that organizers can start planning music and dance shows, sports competitions, conferences, and more. But in the current context, we must ensure that a plethora of security measures are taken into account. No one wants to be the cause of a new outbreak of coronavirus.

How do you prepare for an event in times of COVID-19? What are the criteria to keep in mind when organizing an event? What are the tools available to us to organize an event in times of pandemic?

At Tribu, events are our first love. That’s why we turned to our production manager Pascale Beauregard, who is already working on our next big moves, with everyone’s safety as our top priority.

“250 people is a lot of human management, which is very hard despite the standards. As soon as people arrive at the box office, you have to accompany them and be very clear about the rules to follow.’’

Here are some things to keep in mind during your event for social distancing to be respected and for your participants to feel safe :

– A register

To ensure that you are able to reach everyone present quickly in the event of an outbreak following the event, you need to have everyone’s information. At the entrance to your event, provide a manual log or tablet log and make sure to disinfect after each person enters. Also plan to sell masks at the entrance.

– Clear display and extra staff

Confusion and traffic jams should be avoided. To do this, access areas must be clearly identified for participants and the installation of traffic lines on the ground can be of great help.

Also, have more staff on the ground than usual to answer participants’ questions and ensure that the rules of physical distancing are respected.

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– Running water and disinfectant

During your event, make sure you have running water stations and an industrial amount of disinfectant for your own good and that of the people present. Ideally, install several stations in different areas to avoid waiting or involuntary gatherings. Same goes for bathrooms.

– Mask and distancing

It will be necessary to ensure that there is adequate space to allow festival-goers to maintain a distance of 2 meters, as much as possible. It is therefore necessary to take into account the maximum capacity and manage the ticketing accordingly. It will be important that each participant be in possession of a mask, so that he or she can wear it when moving around and in closed areas such as toilets, restaurants, etc.

At Tribu, there is no lack of ideas to innovate in terms of festival space, with the integration of different technologies, lighting effects and dedicated areas. The creation of an experiential micro-lounge that encourages movement is on our work boards. We will play with the theme of each event to add a playful touch for distancing.

Safeteams, a Montreal innovation

The good news is that event organizers can also turn to some local companies that have been innovative in times of pandemic.

This is the case with PixMob, a company that usually specializes in designing LED wristbands for large-scale events, and the Klik system, smart badges that allow users to exchange contact information with a simple click on the object.  PixMob does much more than all that, but it would take a long time to explain all its products and services.

Notably, it was this company that provided fans with an exceptional illuminated experience during the halftime game of the SuperBowl LIV.

In light of this pandemic that afflicts us all, PixMob has launched a new product called Safeteams.

”It’s a technology we already had, ” explains Evelyne Rousseau, Marketing Director at PixMob. It usually allows you to enter conferences (like C2 Montreal) by scanning your badge. If you hit two badges together, you can exchange information with someone else. We thought we could reuse this technology in COVID time to help with the physical distancing and tracking of interactions between people.”

Safeteams is particularly popular in factories today. Essentially, employees are given a badge or smart key that tracks their movements during a work day. Data is collected and analyzed so that companies can react quickly if a positive test occurs.

”Each participant has a badge where all the badges communicate with each other,” explains Rousseau. If someone has badge 5, for example, and that person tests positive for COVID, we can quickly identify who that person has been in contact with during the day and notify the relevant authorities so that they can take the necessary action.”

Evelyne Rousseau believes that this product can be used in any type of event, even if it is currently mainly used in the industrial sector. After all, security is priceless. Many companies in the food industry, for example, can’t afford to stop production for days to disinfect a factory.

”Zone tracking allows us to know exactly which area of the factory the badge 3 visited and who it passed by. The reaction can therefore be quick and efficient.”

Currently, PixMob is in discussion with several amusement parks around the globe to implement Safeteams.

When life gives lemons…

The current circumstances are difficult for everyone to accept, but COVID also allows us to reinvent ourselves by putting the festival experience at the heart of our priorities.

Without being able to organize large-scale events where tens of thousands of festival-goers could participate, this is a great opportunity to create ephemeral villages, rediscover certain public spaces or strengthen our presence on the web.

For some, the pandemic has also been the instigator of new business relationships, as companies realize that it is better to ally than to be sunk in times of crisis. And even afterwards.

In short, COVID-19 has allowed us to put the customer back at the heart of our DNA, to get back on our feet and reinvent ourselves.

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