Event Timeline

Event Planning and Protocol
Event Timeline Okanagan College

Careful planning can help ensure your event runs smoothly from beginning to end.  Use the following timeline as a guide to keep the planning process as stress-free as possible. You may also download a pdf checklist to assist in your planning.

Two months to one year before the event

  • Reserve date on key players’ calendars
  • Provide Public Affairs with notice of the event
  • Develop guest list
  • Reserve venue (on campus or off?)
  • Arrange food and beverages (caterer?)
  • Book entertainment if relevant
  • Arrange for equipment:
    • PA system
    • Podium
    • Stage
    • Flags
    • Tables
    • Chairs
    • Projector/Screen
    • TV/DVD
    • Lighting
    • Flowers
    • Plants

Four to six weeks before the event

  • Develop invitations and other print materials - work with Public Affairs graphic designers John Wecels or Len Nickel to draft an invitation. See the following sample invites: Sample one, sample two, sample three.
  • Send invitations.

One month before the event

  • Provide Public Affairs and the President's Office with briefing note.
  • Develop event plan.
  • Confirm speakers and emcee (considerations for speakers and role of emcee, who will develop speaking notes, etc.)
  • Finalize menu, review venue setup, arrival time, etc with caterer.
  • Arrange photographer or videographer
  • Make arrangements to provide parking
  • Submit work requests to Facilities and IT Services.

One week before the event

  • Place RSVP follow-up calls to confirm final number of attendees
  • Connect with caterer to finalize arrangements and make any special arrangements (known allergies, food preferences).  Review with caterer: serving order, outline of event such as the timing of remarks, etc.
  • Print materials - name tags, program, place cards, certificates or seating assignments
  • If media is to attend, connect with Public Affairs to send advisory, finalize any press releases, prepare media kits.
  • Ensure clean-up requirements will be met.
  • Develop seating plan.

Day of the event

  • Do scan to ascertain if other events beyond your control will detract from your event
  • Decorate and arrange materials at venue – flag protocol
  • Test equipment such as audio/video
  • Brief the event’s key players
  • Review RSVP list to identify VIPs as they arrive and update list of “must-mentions” for emcee.
  • Event coordinators ensure that all guests are accommodated

After the event

  • Evaluate the event and request feedback from those that attended
  • Send thank you notes and acknowledgements
  • Send info and photo (if applicable) to Inside Okanagan College
  • Clean-up and leave the space as you found it
  • If requested Public Affairs will share media hits with you
Quick Links
Event Timeline
Speaking Protocol
Event Plan
Promoting Your Event
Print Materials
Catering and Alcohol
Seating Plan
Greening Your Event
Event Planning Resources
Okanagan College
Event Checklist

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