Host an Event

Club Fat Ass Events

Club Fat Ass (“CFA") was formed to promote free, low-key endurance sports events and a healthy, outdoor lifestyle. The concept is based on bringing together like-minded people at endurance sport "parties."  Club events can be about as informal as a training run with a couple of friends, or range to being almost as structured as an expensive, organized race.

A Scheduled event is hosted by a Club member for their fellow members.  Scheduled events are held every year at the same time.  

A Flash event is hosted by anyone for members or non-members.  Flash events are one time affairs.  There is not much to prepare, other than setting a date and a course.  Anyone with a user account can post a Flash Event on this website at http://www.clubfatass.com/node/add/event.

More information on the differences between Flash and Scheduled  Events can be found here.

 

Club Fat Ass Event Host

In keeping with the party analogy, we call members who host Club events ‘Event Hosts’ and those who attend events ‘Guests’.

We hope that everyone who enjoys playing in the outdoors will host a Club event at some time or another. We believe that if we can make it easy for community-minded folks like you to have fun hosting an event, you'll go to the trouble... and the world will be a better place for it. 

Why go to the trouble? You want to make a contribution to your community. A lot of friends share your passion for endurance sports (running, biking, snowshoeing, adventure racing, etc.), so you're looking at hosting a Club event as if it were a party for old friends and an opportunity to make a few new friends. You understand that putting on an event is going to take some of your valuable time and cause you some grief. You know you will make lots of mistakes and no matter what you do, some people will complain. You may be the only person to toe the start line. With bull-headed determination, you want to host an event anyway. 

Event Hosts will tell you that it’s very rewarding to host an event as well as a great learning experience. They’ll also tell you that hosting your first event will take some time to organize, so we strongly recommend you start with a Flash event.  Successful Event Hosts will tell you that if you invest time into planning and preparing your first event, hosting it a second and subsequent time can be as simple as changing the date on your free Event website!

We don’t ask for much, but we do ask that an Event Host commit to hosting their Scheduled event for at least 3 years. We want to see the event develop a popular following over time and see you, the Event Host, enjoy your own party. The Club will provide a consistent, structured framework for Club events, and coach members on how to host a safe, successful and fun event for the benefit of Club members and members-to-be.

Scheduled Event Host Application

If you are a current Club member, all you need to do to host a Scheduled Event is complete an application. This application clarifies what coaching and assistance you can expect from Club Fat Ass and the commitment we ask in return.

Other than your time, there doesn't have to be any cost to you. Once approved, you will receive a welcome note, our "Planning a Successful Club Fat Ass Event" manual and you will be given access to our website development template. (No experience required!)

Apply to become a CFA Event Host now!

Questions?

Please check the FAQ for answers to many Frequently Asked Questions about how to get started as a Club Fat Ass Event Host.

If we've not answered your question, please contact Sibylle Tinsel, Chief Executive Fat Ass.

Event Host Application

If you have read all the information about hosting a Club Fat Ass event and feel you have what it takes, please read the agreement and fill out the application below.

Club Fat Ass Event Host Agreement

In consideration of the premises and provisions herein the parties agree as follows:

1. CFA commitments

During the Term of this Agreement, CFA agrees to provide the Event Host:

2. Event Host commitments

During the term of this Agreement, the Event Host agrees to:

3. Relationship of CFA and Event Host

The parties intend by this Agreement to establish the relationship of consultant and client, each as an independent contractor, and that it is not the intention of either party to establish a fiduciary relationship or to undertake a joint venture or to make either party in any sense an agent, employee, affiliate, associate or partner of one another. It is further agreed that neither party has any authority to and will not at any time hereafter transact any business in the name of the other or create or assume in the name of the other or on its behalf in any manner, directly or indirectly, any obligation, express or implied, or act or purport to act as its agent or representative for any purpose whatsoever, and neither party shall hold itself out as having any such authority, and neither party shall, under any circumstances, be liable for any obligation, agreement, contract, representation or warranty which either party may hereafter enter into or make.

4. Termination of Agreement

This Agreement may be terminated by CFA on giving thirty (30) days notice in writing to the Event Host or, in the event that the Event Host is in breach of a material provision of this Agreement and such breach is not remedied forthwith upon notice from CFA, without notice.

5. Indemnity

The Event Host shall defend, indemnify and save CFA and its affiliates harmless from and against any and all claims and demands of whatever kind or character, incurred as a result of any violation of this Agreement by the Event Host or any act or omission or commission on the part of the Event Host or anyone for whom the Event Host is responsible in law, or on account of any loss, injury or damage to any person or to any property in any way arising out of or in connection with the event being run by the Event Host in connection with the CFA name.

6. Enurement

This Agreement shall enure to the benefit of and be binding upon the parties and their successors and assigns.

Terminology

Event Host - you
CFA - Club Fat Ass (a division of CFA Sports Inc.)
Parties - you and CFA
Event - the endurance sport event you would like to host under this agreement
Guests - the people who participate in your Event
Date - the date you complete this agreement
Website - the website dedicated to your Event at www.ClubFatAss.com
Handbook "Planning a Successful Club Fat Ass Event", a comprehensive handbook written specifically
to help you plan and promote your Event
Single-Day Fee - the fee (currently $20.00 online or $25 cash) that non-members of CFA pay to join CFA for the day of your Event
Transaction Costs - the costs to CFA for online credit card processing of the Single-Day Fee
Survey - an online satisfaction survey
Privacy
Policy
- the commitment CFA makes to its members regarding the privacy and confidentiality of their personal information
Term - three (3) years from the date of this Agreement
Any annual Club member in good standing may host a scheduled event. If you're not currently a member, please join here.

this field will auto populate if you have filled in the corresponding field in your user profile
this field will auto populate if you have filled in the corresponding field in your user profile
this field will auto populate if you have filled in the corresponding field in your user profile
this field auto populates with your user email if you are logged in
In case we need to reach you.  If available, please also include a cell phone number for the day of the event.  This field will auto populate if you have filled in the corresponding field in your user profile
Your Proposed Event
Please be as detailed as possible providing us with specifics about your planned event.
This is the name of the event as it will be posted on the CFA website and in online calendars. 
please consider conflicts with existing CFA events or races of a similar format (distance/terrain/location) before deciding on the date. We recommend to hold the event on the same weekend each year.
start time/expected finisher times (fast runners/slow runner)
Please include City, Province/State, Country as well as an exact start location like a street address/intersection, park name.  If available, you can also include GPS coordinates.
list all planned approximate distances in km or miles (USA)
please elaborate on the proposed format, ie. road/trail run, bike, triathlon, other?
In your mind, how many participants will it take to make your event successful?
Is this a new event or an existing one that you would like to bring to the Club? If existing, tell us about its history. If new, tell us about why you want to put it on and why it is sure to be a lot of fun. Assume some of this information will appear on the "Backgrounder" page of your website and will be read by a newspaper reporter hoping to write a story about your event. Sell your event here!
Please share any other information that you feel is relevant and would help us to approve it.

Event Host Resources

Club Fat Ass would like to see this website become the place to go for information on how to plan and manage cheap and cheerful events. While this page is primarily intended to help Event Hosts, we encourage all athletes and race directors to take advantage of the materials we've assembled here.

We hope that you will share your experience with us and your other friends who use these resources. Please contact us with your suggestions for information or links to other resources you feel we should list here. Give us your name and we'll give you credit for any suggestions or constructive criticism you offer the next time we update the page.

 

Planning your Event

Here are some documents we hope will help you with planning your event. Event Hosts please also refer to your Event Host manual, "Hosting a Safe and Successful Club Fat Ass Event". Course Configuration

Course Configurations
This page is intended to help you evaluate different types of courses for your event. Click here to learn more about some of the options.

Promoting - Online Event Calendars
How will prospective guests find out about your event? A growing number of people look to online event calendars to find the endurance sport events they participate in. Click here for a list of online event calendars you can use to promote your event for free.

Promoting - Event Store Poster
You can print out this coloured poster to promote your event at the supermarket, gym and local running store etc.

Promoting - CFA Brochure
You can print out this coloured brochure or pick some up from CFA.

Help on Event Day

Here are some documents we hope will save you time and aggravation on the day of your event:

 

Guest Register
You can download all pre-registered participants directly from your website into an Excel spreadsheet. Please refer to How to download a registration list? for details. This is a handy document, as you can use it to sign-in participants, record time and create a results table for your website.

Release
Print off a few releases to use just in case some of your guests have not registered online. Please refer to How to deal with last minute registrations for details.

Results
Ask your participants to record their times on the Registration sheet after the event or to email them to you promptly. Type all handwritten info of last minute registrations as well as all times/distances into your Registration list. This is the document you should forward to Sibylle to get your results up on your Club Fat Ass website promptly and accurately. Please note that you can download all your pre-registered participants directly from your registration page at How to download a registration list?

 

Aid Stations
Aid stations are places where participants in regular endurance sports events might expect to find food and fluids. Click here for information about you might organize aid stations.

Crewing
Club Fat Ass events are intended to be low key, low maintenance and low impact. While we promote that events offer no aid, no marking and no t-shirts, Event Hosts have some discretion. Click here for thoughts on how family and friends might contribute to a safe and successful event.

 

 

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CFA Event Poster final (with text fields).pdf95.82 KB
CFA brochure2007_10.pdf344.81 KB

Add a Google Map to your Agenda page

Here are the instructions to use the GMap builder module.

Part 1. Center the Map

  • log in to the website with your user-name and password
  • either link to http://www.clubfatass.com/map/macro or click on "Build a GMap macro" under your name on the left hand column
  • open a separate browser window with your Agenda page and open the Edit tab
  • drag the map around with your mouse until the area of your event is more or less in the centre. Use the zoom function (the arrows and plus/minus sign in the upper left corner of the map) for more or less detail.

Part 2. Enter Reference Points

Use the following settings to place Start, Finish and other key key reference points on your map:

  • Click map: points
  • Click marker: edit info
  • Marker:
    • orange - if you want a simple blank marker
    • number - if you would like to have several numbered markers on the map
  • click on map to place the markers.

Use the following settings to change your reference points:

  • Click map: points
  • Click marker: remove marker
  • Marker: as above
  • click on map to place the markers.

Other hints and tips 

  • if in doubt, zoom way in when you place the marker.  The more accurate the better, as someone might use a GPS to find your reference point
  • use the move and zoom arrows and plus/minus signs until you are happy with the centering and magnification of the map
  • to centre the map on a certain address you can in out the address in the "Address" field
  • ignore any of the other fields on the page

Part 3 - Save Your Map to Your Agenda page

  • at the bottom of the page, there is a box labelled Macro text:
  • copy the text in the Macro text field (CTRL C)
  • go to the other window with your Agenda page
  • paste the text (CTRL V) where you would like to see the map
  • click Submit to save your changes in the page. Wait a few seconds as the maps loads. You should see a Google Map embedded in your page.
  • close the GMap macro page
Please don't hesitate to post here if you have any questions, problems, hints or tips.  This is a new features and there may be some bugs.

Aid

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, determine how you would like to address the issue of aid for your event. 

For the purposes of Club Fat Ass events, we refer to an aid as, "any form of outside assistance" and an aid station as, "a place where an event participant can get aid."

One of the key premises of Club Fat Ass events is that participants should be fully self-sufficient and should not expect external aid of any kind during the event. That said, an Event Host may opt to provide aid as an unexpected extra or to insure that an unprepared guest doesn't come to grief because they didn't prepare appropriately. 

Clearly, it is very important to establish expectations as they refer to aid. The following thoughts are intended to help Event Hosts and participants clarify expectations and prepare accordingly.

Please note

Sharing your comments.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "add new comment".

Printing this chapter. To print off a nicely formatted page for your records, go to the bottom of the page and clink on "printer-friendly version". 

Expectations

Setting expectations properly is particularly important when it comes to aid.

Set expectations at zero

Promote that guests in your event should expect no aid from you.  State clearly in all event communications that you expect them to come prepared to complete the event with their own food and liquids.

Identify outside sources of food and liquids

Make sure you note drinking fountains or public washrooms with clean drinking water in your event course description.  (Be sure to check that they are working the week before your event!)  Also identify on your course description the location of convenience stores or other places where a hungry or thirsty guest might stock up along the course.

Identify possible aid stations

We recommend you identify key Reference Points along the event course where an aid station might be set up if a volunteer steps forward.  If there are no volunteers, nothing is lost.  If there are, it is easy for guests and volunteers to identify the location of the aid station.

Drop bags

Will you take participant’s belongings from the start to the finish or to aid stations along the course?  The contents of a drop bag may include a change of shoes or sox, a change of clothes, food or other special needs.  If you are accepting drop bags, at which reference point can the participant expect them?

Types of Aid Stations 

  • Un-manned. There are no people at the aid station to identify it or to assist a participant in the event. Examples of this type of aid station might include a public drinking fountain or a few milk jugs of water or electrolyte drink stashed by the roadside.
  • Manned. One or more crew people associated with the event are present. An example of a typical manned aid station might be a card table or picnic bench with water or electrolyte drink in paper cups.

Classifications of Aid

The word 'aid' can mean different things to different people. What is appropriate depends on the type of event and the weather. For example, what works in the summer might not be appropriate in the winter or on a cold rainy day. A faster or more experienced participant may have different requirements from someone new to a sport.

Setting expectations for what type of aid will be available and at which point during an event is critical. To help set expectations, we offer the following suggestions for classifying aid. 

1. Basic Aid

CFA - Group Run - Release Of All Claims



_________________________________
Group Run Name

Name (first, last) ____________________________________________

Address (Street, City, etc.) ____________________________________

Telephone ___________________Email _________________________

[ ] Yes, I am a member of Club Fat Ass


Release of All Claims

  • I understand that Club Fat Ass Group Runs (“CFA Group Run”) are physically challenging and hazardous for even well-conditioned and prepared athletes under favorable conditions.
  • I acknowledge and understand that participation in CFA Group Runs involves risks to my health and safety, including permanent injury or death, and I voluntarily assume those risks.
  • I understand and acknowledge that neither Club Fat Ass nor CFA Group Run Hosts are responsible for assessing my ability to participate in CFA Group Runs and I have had made such inquiries as are reasonably necessary concerning CFA Group Runs to be able to declare that I am healthy and fit for CFA Group Runs.
  • I understand that neither Club Fat Ass nor CFA Group Run Hosts provide participants accident, disability or other insurance and that I am solely responsible for providing such coverage as I deem necessary or prudent.

In consideration for being permitted to participate in CFA Group Runs, I hereby for myself and for my personal representatives and successors release and forever discharge CFA Group Run Hosts and Club Fat Ass, together with the officers, directors, employees, representatives, agents, sponsors and volunteers of each, of and from all actions, causes of action, claims, demands or compensation of any kind, whether presently known or unknown, and whether as a result of negligence or any other cause, arising out of or in connection with my participation in CFA Group Runs.



______________________________________________________________________

--- Event Guest (signature) -------------------------- Date ---------------------

CFA - Last Minute Registration/ Waiver

Please use the waiver here for last minute sign-ups.

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CFA - Waiver.pdf29.5 KB

Course Design

Resources> Course Configurations

The course on which the event is held is it's signature. Needless to say, it is very important to start with a good course when planning a Club Fat Ass event.

The following thoughts are intended to help Event Hosts understand the advantages and disadvantages of different types of courses.

Loop / Out and Back

The start and finish of the event is at the same place.

Pros:

  • Only one point needed to serve as start and finish areas, so it's a lot easier for guests and for you

Cons:

  • Can't think of any!

Point to Point

The start and finish of the event are at different places

Pros:

  • Participants have feeling they are going somewhere

Cons:

  • Need to consider participant vehicles and logistics of reuniting the participant with their vehicle
  • Need for separate start and finish venues

Do you have other suggestions regarding course setup? If so, please contact us with your thoughts. We'll add the best suggestions and give you credit for them on this web page.

 

Crewing/Volunteering

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, delegate appropriately so you can participate in your own event. 

An important feature of Club Fat Ass events is that the Event Host does the tough work up front so they, too, can participate in the event. That said, there are always little extras that could be done to make the event even better. Friends, family and others may want to do something to help. Why shouldn't they get wet, muddy and sweaty like everyone else?

For the purposes of Club Fat Ass events, we refer to an crew as, "anyone who helps host the event." A crew person may take on one or more tasks.

In this chapter, we've attempted to break down a typical Club Fat Ass event into tasks that can be assumed by crew members. Our hope is that by describing the tasks in detail on this page and recommending that crew people select the tasks that suit them best, a significant burden will be removed from the shoulders of the Event Host and everyone comes away with a great sense of achievement at the end of the day.

Please note

Sharing your comments.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "add new comment".

Printing this chapter. To print off a nicely formatted page for your records, go to the bottom of the page and clink on "printer-friendly version". 

Check-in Manager

The role of this person is to make sure all starters are properly checked-in.

  • Welcome everyone as they arrive
  • Ask guests who have pre-registered to sign in on the master registration list
  • While it is assumed that most guests have registered online, there will always be those who leave it to the last minute. 
    • Club Members.  If the last minute registrant is a Club member, ask them to sign waiver and add their name to the master list
    • Non-Members.  If the last minute registrant is not a Club member, ask them to sign waiver, add their name to the master list and pay the Day-of-Event membership dues.
  • File release waivers
  • Add up all starters
  • Coordinate with Event Host before start to identify any pre-registered guests who are not present
  • Pass the master list of registrants and waivers to Check-out Manager

Check-out / Timing Manager

The role of this person is to make sure all starters are accounted for at the end of the event and that their times are recorded on the master list.

  • If applicable, record names of people who pass through specific Reference Points
  • Record finish times.  This is generally honor system.  Note distances and times of guests who do not complete the course
  • Check with sweep to make sure all starters are safe and accounted for
  • Pass the file to Event Host

Aid Station Manager

Guests should assume there is no aid. The role of this person is to make sure that expectations regarding any aid to be provided by the event at a particular Reference Point are met or exceeded.

  • Coordinate with Event Host to get any aid they wish to provide
  • Coordinate with Event Host if you would like to provide any creative obstacles, games or other surprises
  • Get to location 30 minutes in advance of first expected participant
  • Set up aid station
  • Hand food and drink to guests as they pass by your aid station
  • Help participants with special needs (e.g. dropping out, medical issues, etc.)
  • Take down aid station and remove all traces of the event
  • Report in to Event Host when aid station is closed

Drop Bag Manager

The role of this person is to make sure that any drop bags get to the proper Reference Point on time and that they are returned to the guest after the event.

  • Note: coordinating drop bags is a hassle and definitely a big bonus for a Club Fat Ass event
  • Organize drop bag drop off and pick-up.  Coordinate with Event Host regarding location
  • Make sure drop bags are closed and clearly labeled with guest's name and aid station location
  • Get drop bags to aid stations before first guest arrives
  • Collect all drop bags after the last guest has left the aid station
  • Make sure all drop bags and other items are returned to guests at finish
  • Pass along any Lost and Found issues to the Event Host

Sweep

The role of this person is to make sure that the last person in the event is accounted for, and that the event is finished.

  • Run or ride behind the last participant
  • Coordinate with Check-out Manager and Event Host at end of the event to confirm that all participants are accounted for

Photographer

The role of this person is to make sure there is a visual record of the event.

  • Recommend using a digital camera, as it is cheap to acquire and easy to distribute digital images
  • Get a nice photo of everyone at the start line. 
  • Try for some action shots during the event
  • Aim to get all crew members and other key people in the event in a photo
  • Capture some of the joy of victory as well as the agony of defeat or injury... and don't forget the party!
  • Provide images to Event Host as soon as possible after the event
  • Coordinate with media, as needed

Pot Luck Manager

If a pot luck party is planned at the finish, the role of this person is to make sure that it goes smoothly.

  • Help guests when they arrive by taking their food and beverages and storing them in a safe place
  • Make sure stuff that should stay cold stays cold and that what should be heated gets heated so that food is ready when the event is finished
  • Make sure guests don't forget their dishes when they leave. If they do, please take responsibility for identifying the owners and getting the items back to them

Cheerleader

The role of this person is to provide help and encouragement to the event guests while they are out there playing in the great outdoors.

Fundraising

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, leverage your event to generate funds for the charitable causes you support.

Club Fat Ass was founded to make fun, low-key outdoor activities accessible and affordable to all.  By hosting a Club event in the first place, you are already doing a lot for your community.  "How on earth is it possible to host a free, Club Fat Ass event and also raise money?", you ask?

Many current and prospective Event Hosts have asked this question.  We are happy to say that it is possible to do and thousands of dollars have been raised as a result of Club events.  All it just takes a bit more time and planning.

Where Do I Start?

Since all Club events are by definition free to members, the challenge becomes how to maximize the number of participants and to find ways to encourage those participants to either voluntarily donate to your cause or to invent ways for your participants to want to contribute.

Maximizing Participants

The Club goes to a lot of trouble and expense to promote Club events.  Club events are listed in a print brochure.  They are promoted to the media and they are listed on online event calendars and are showcased on the Club website and in the monthly Club newsletter.

We highly recommend you take some initiative locally to make sure that your event is promoted in community centers, running/sports stores and the local media.  For ideas, please see the chapter of this manual on Promotions. 

Since you have a special additional goal of fund raising, we recommend you review your attendance and fund raising goals with the Club to insure that extra emphasis is placed on promoting your event and your goals.

Voluntary Donations

Club members are extraordinarily community-oriented. Experience has shown that if you organize an exceptional event and treat your guests well, they will be open to donating to your cause.  We recommend that you make it clear on your event website that your event is a fundraiser and that you make a convincing argument on your website for your cause.  You may want to note that your event is free, but you are suggesting a donation of $10 per person.

Fund raising Activities

There are endless ways to coax contributions from your guests!  Here are some suggestions for activities that are very effective for running races.

Raffle

Solicit prizes from local businesses.  Raffle them off.  A simple way to do this is to charge $2 per ticket or 3 for $5.  Given that most people will purchase $5 worth of tickets, you can quickly estimate the proceeds.  For example:  70 participants attend the party, 60 buy $5 raffle tickets = $300. 

Provide a speaker

Convince a local media or sports celebrity to speak on a relevant topic.  You may want to have your speaking event  at your pre- or post-event party or at another time.  Charge something for tickets.

Other Hints and Tips for Fund Raising 

1.  Start early

Experience has shown that the Event Hosts who start planning and promoting their fundraising efforts early have a very high degree of success.

2.  Determine your fund raising goal 

How much money do you want to raise? Be sure to pick a realistic goal.

3.  Make Your Goal Public

Mention your fund raising goal on your event website adn to the charity you are working with.  That way, the heat is on and you are more likely to reach your goal!

4.  Determine the number of participants will you need to achieve your fundraising goal

This is simple if you make a few simple assumptions.  Let's say you aim to raise $500 and that you aim to have each person contribute $20 or more.  That means you will need to get at least 25 participants.
 
Note:  If your guests are annual Club members, you are not charging them for their attendance.  If your guests are day of event members, the Club will split the after cost fees with you.  This will raise an additional $9 for each online single day membership registration and $10 for each single day membership registration paid at the event. 



Sharing your comments
.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "Add new comment".

Printing this chapter. To print off a nicely formatted version of this page, go to the bottom of the page and clink on "Printer-friendly version". 

Planning Your Event

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, plan your event so that it is successful and fun your guests and for you. 

Your event is unique, but it does share a lot of similarities with other Club events. The following time lines and tasks are drawn from the experience of fellow Event Hosts and best practices in event management.  We recommend you start your event planning process by printing off this page and writing the name, date and attendance goals for your event on it.  Then work backwards to fill-in the dates so you establish rough deadlines for yourself.

Please note

Sharing your comments.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "add new comment".

Printing this chapter. To print off a nicely formatted page for your records, go to the bottom of the page and clink on "printer-friendly version".  

Overview


 

______________________________
(name and date of your event)

 

For this event to be successful to me, I aim to have:
 

_____  +  _____  =  _____

       Guests       Crew       Participants 

-6 Months or More

  • website
    • make sure all information on your website is correct
    • register yourself to confirm the registration form comes to your current email address
    • test your course description on a few friends to make sure it is accurate and maybe measure it again
    • confirm or determine your post race party location
  • promote
    • identify relevant online calendars, magazines, running stores and note them on the back of this page for future reference.  Notify Club Fat Ass to have them added to the Resources page of the Club website
    • Email or call administrators of appropriate online and off line race calendars, running stores, recreation centers, gyms, magazines, etc.  If appropriate, send them a store poster that can be printed out and posted at their physical location
    • when using online event calendars, we recommend you make reference to your CFA event website URL so people will first go there for information rather than calling or emailing you
    • We strongly advise against posting your phone number or email address on online calendars. This attracts spam and invades your privacy.  Sometimes you can get around giving out your phone number and email by typing 000-000-0000 and [email protected].  Sometimes it requires an email to the webmaster.  More and more online calendars realize the invasion of privacy/potential for spam and no longer require you to post your email/phone number

-3 Months

  • Reminder for race calendars
  • Resend email notices to build awareness
  • Reminder for stores
  • Email or fax notice for event boards

-1 Month

  • Try to get local media exposure
    • Fax/email news release to local newspapers, radio and television stations
  • Reminder to appropriate newsgroups
    • send an email notice to discussion forums

Assign Tasks

If you will need help to host your event, start thinking about the specifics of what help you will need and who will actually do it. 

Float the idea of crewing with your friends.  If they are interested, refer them to the chapter on Crew/Volunteers so they might pick the tasks that best suit them.  Let them tell you what they would like to do and get a commitment from them.  Then trust that the task will get done so you can enjoy a stress-free run!

Post-event Party

If you are planning a get-together, make sure you have confirmed when, when, how long and any other details.  Make sure the details are clear on your website.

Supplies and Supporters

If you are planning any aid stations or draw prizes, make sure you have confirmed who, what, when and how with them.

-1 Day

Last Minute Checklist

Event Day

Pre Start

  • Recommend you get to the start about an hour before your published start time
  • Welcome everyone.  Get them to sign waivers and provide coordinates (including email) and check in so you know who is there
  • Collect membership fees (day of event or annual) from non CFA members; ask if you are unsure
  • Make your announcements (keep it brief!)
  • Take a start photo
  • Go!

Finish

If possible, greet finishers personally.  If not, make sure your guests check out in some way (e.g. enter their finish times on a list, call you to let you know they have abandoned, etc.)
Get finish times and distances for your results.

Party

  • Thank everyone who made your event successful!  (guests, crew, sponsors, etc.)
  • Confirm finish times, starters and finishers
  • Ask for ideas for your event report:  Funny things that happened, particular achievements that deserve recognition, etc.

Post-Finish

  • Complete results, including names, times, distance and points. Send to Club via email or upload yourself directly to website
  • Write first draft of your race report and post
  • upload photos or send to Club

Event Day +1

Wrap-up

  • If not done already, post your results and race report on your website
  • Update your website with next years date
  • Distribute results to email newsgroups, media
  • Communicate your new date to online and off line race calendars
  • Follow-up on any wrap-up communications with the Club
  • Go to another Club event and let someone else worry about the planning and preparation!

Pre and Post Event Announcements

As the host, all eyes are on you for directions.  At the same time, your guests just want to get started.  We recommend very strongly that you note a few key things in writing beforehand so you don't have to think at the start or at the finisher party.  Here are some thoughts that we hope will help you.

Start

  • Welcome!  Thank you for showing up!
  • Introduce yourself and your event.  Make some disclaimer statement. 
    • E.g.  This is an informal, non-event that I’ve loosely organized with the hope that you’ll have fun.  I promise you nothing and, as a fellow Club Fat Ass member, I don’t charge you anything so by participating you agree to not sue me if you have a heart attack doing this or the bears eat you.  I assume you’re physically prepared to do this and you’re self sufficient.  All in favor, say “aye!”
  • Confirm that everyone is registered
  • Take starter photo
  • Identify any media people, thank any sponsors
  • Confirm that everyone has directions, knows what to do in an emergency and how to check out
  • Identify any particularly tricky aspects of the course, any aid, toilets, etc.
  • Ask everyone to get their finish times to you ASAP and ask to complete the quality control survey afterward so you can improve
  • Clarify time and location of any finisher party
  • Have fun!

Finisher Party

  • Ask each person for highs and lows, interesting things that happened and note them for your race report
  • Confirm finish times
  • Make any draws or announcements
  • Thank sponsors and crew
  • Announce next date for event, next date of a Club event

Promoting Your Event

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, promote your event. 

How many times have you learned after the fact of a great party or event you’d have loved to be at?  How many times have you gone to a party and wondered where everyone was?  Clearly, the more people know about your event, the better the chances they will attend.

In this chapter, we've listed several ways to get the word out about your event. 

Please note

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Targeting your guests

Who do you feel would want to participate? 

Think about who might be interested in participating in your event?  This is called your target market.  Your event may appeal to a narrowly defined group such as your 10 closest training buddies or a widely defined group such as all trail runners who can run 10 kilometers and who live within an hours drive of the start.

Marketing Collateral

Marketingt collateral includes cards, flyers, posters adn other promotional materials.  It's tough to come up with great marketing collateral *and* put on an event for free!  We do not recommend you spend money on marketing materials other than possibly on photocopy charges.  The Club does, however, provide some templated materials that may help you.

  • CFA brochure.  Each year, we create a large number of high quality brochures to promote the Club and Club events.  To minimize shipping costs, we encourage you to print off color copies.
  • CFA Event poster.  This template event poster is simple to update, print and distribute.  

Approaching your Guests

Create an "A" List

Start by calling and emailing the people you would most like to see come to your event. Tell them about your event and how it won't be a roaring success unless they attend.  If you have hosted an event in the past, send a special note to the people who have participated in the past.

Go Hunting at the Watering Hole

Put yourself in the shoes of your prospective guest.  If you were looking for an event like the one you are hosting, how would you find out about it?  Start by making sure your event is listed there!

Media release

Newspapers, radio stations, television broadcasters are all looking for news.  Media savvy event promoters make the news by providing the appropriate media outlets with a media release.  There is a formula to writing a good media release.  To learn more about how to do this, we recommend you ask a librarian or Google “media release”, “Press release” and “News Release.”  To find a list of media contacts, consult your local yellow pages for the appropriate telephone and fax numbers.

Online event calendars

There are literally hundreds of online event calendars that cover any kind of sport or activity.  Many of your prospective guests look to these calendars for help deciding which events they will participate in, so you want to be in as many calendars as possible.  Almost all listings are absolutely free.  Calendars come and go.  To determine which event calendars are right for your event, try searching Google for “online event calendar” and terms like “trail running”.  Don’t overlook online event calendars of your local newspapers, libraries, community centers and sports equipment stores.

To help you get started, we try to list your event in the popular outdoor sport event calendars.  You can find a list of online sports event calendars here

Local athletic clubs

Notify the athletic clubs in your community:  running, triathlon, mountain biking, cycling, hiking, adventure racing are often listed on the website of your regional athletic association.  Send an email to the president and encourage that person to forward to their membership.

Community centers, recreation centers

There is usually a peg board dedicated to events of interest to community members.  If required, be sure to get permission before posting a notice.

Sports stores

Specialty bike, running, triathlon and other sports stores usually have a section devoted to events.  Make sure your event is represented!

Build a Value Proposition

Value is a concept that strikes a balance between cost and what something is worth.  Athletic events such as the Ironman Hawaii triathlon cost $500.  A guided training run out of the local running store may cost $10.  Which is the better deal? What if the costs were reversed?  Clearly, value depends on the individual and where their expectations are.

One of the unique features of a Club Fat Ass event is that it is free to Club Fat Ass members.  Your event will be compared to other Club Fat Ass events as well as paid events that may cost $100 or more to enter.  People are strange.  While some who are used to paying $100 may love your event while some who paid nothing will whine.

In order to build your unique value proposition, we recommend you look at other Club Fat Ass events and at other events in your area.  Think about things you can do with little or no money to make your event fun and unique for your guests.  Some value-building thoughts include:

  • A spectacular course
  • Outstanding aid and volunteers
  • A fantastic post event party
  • Great media coverage
  • Personal attention
  • Fabulous draw prizes

Sharing your comments.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "add new comment".

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Registration - How To Deal With Last Minute Registrations

It is important for you to know who starts your event.  This so you can both account for everyone at the finish and give your guests credit for their efforts on the results page of your event website.

We encourage all participants to register online and in advance as a courtesy to you, the Event Host.   For better or for worse, some of your guests make their decision to join you at the last minute. 


Paperwork

  • Print off and bring your registration list to the start.
  • As you greet your guests, ask them to sign-in.  All participants who have preregistered online are Club Fat Ass members, unless noted otherwise.  If they have pre-registered, there is no work for you or for them
  • anyone not on your registration list needs to both complete a waiver and add their name to the master list of starters.  Please check to make sure they include a legible email address, as otherwise you may have no way to contact them!
  • Clarify if the person is a current Club Fat Ass member.
  • Non-members will have to pay the Single-Day membership fee in cash or cheque ($25). Please note amount paid on both the waiver and the registration list. Single Day membership fees paid in cash are split between CFA ($10) and the Event Host ($15).
  • If a person prefers to sign-up as annual member, it is usually best to refer them to the website and trust that they wil do so. They still need to sign a waiver. Note on the waiver that the person will sign up online.
  • After the event, transfer the handwritten info (as well as finisher times, distances covered and allocated points) into your Excel registration file and forward to Sibylle.

Registration - How to download a registration list?

You should receive an email copy of every online registration in your inbox. This is great to see immediately who signed up for your event. However, it is not a good format for a starter list. You can create a starter list directly from your registration page without having to manually type the data.

To create a starter list: 

  • Login, then go to your Event website and click on the link to your Registration page
  • Under the Registration caption you will see link tabs. Click on "Results" (this is rectangular tab, not the link to the event results page - if you end up on the event results page, go back and look for the rectangular tabs)
  • A list of registrants opens up.
  • Click on "Download" and select "Microsoft Excel" as the export format and "Tab" as the "delimited text format".
  • Click on "Download" at the bottom of the page
  • All registrations will download into an Excel spread sheet.

To use this spreadsheet as a starter and finisher list you will need to customize it slightly.

Customize your Excel registration list:

  • Delete all rows that contain test registrations either from you or Sibylle
  • Delete all duplicate registrations (sometimes folks like to hit the submit button twice)
  • Delete all rows with information you will not need on the day of the event. You should keep the rows with the sign-up date, First Name, Last Name, phone, email (important), City, Distance.
  • Create a new column for sign-in
  • Create a new column for times (several, if you record split times or loop times)
  • If you know how to do this, you can create table grids around each cell. This makes the table more readable when participants sign in.
  • Sort by "distance/event" and then by "last name".
  • Add blank rows at the bottom to allow for registrations the morning of the event.
  • Save your document to your files as "Year-YourEvent-Registration"

Awarding Points for the point series:

  • Now is a good time to award 2 points for all participants pre-registered 2 days in advance, 1 point for participants registered less than 2 days in advance. Folks who sign up and don't show, will earn a minus point! Points are also rewarded for good sportsmanship and picking up garbage. Other points are awarded or deducted at your discretion.
  • It's easy to replace the registration date with points using the same column and deleting the date.

Printing your registration list:

  • Select the rows and colums you need to print. Don't forget to include a few empty rows for last minute registration.
  • Click print-preview, select "landscape" format.
  • Arrange the margins and column width to fit all columns on one sheet.
  • Print

 

Results - How To Award Point

Points for the annual point series are awarded for every scheduled event (no points for flash events).  More information on the point series is posted here: http://www.clubfatass.com/contests/pointseries

  • Use your master registration sheet to record points: 2 points for all participants pre-registered 2 days in advance, 1 point for participants registered less than 2 days in advance. Folks who sign up and don't show, will earn a minus point! Points are also rewarded for good sportsmanship and picking up garbage. Other points are awarded or deducted at your discretion. As an event host, you'll get 2 points for participating and 2 points for hosting a scheduled events.  Flash event participation does not earn points, but hosting a Flash event gets you 1 point.
  • It's easy to replace the registration date column on your master sheet with points using the same column and deleting the date.
  • Include a point column in the results table for the website.
  • Please send a copy of your master registration/results sheet including awarded poins to the site admin.  The annual point series will be updated according to the information you provide.

Results

The print out of your registration list is your master sheet for the results. You will use your computer copy to post to the website

Recording Times

  • Make sure you remind everybody at the start to record their times and either write them on your registration sheet after finishing or email them to you.
  • If you have a helper at the finish, ask them to record times and distances.
  • Bring your registration sheet to the finisher party and record any missing times/distances

Posting Results

  • Once home and recovered, transfer the times, distances and points collected to your registration sheet stored on your computer.  Make sure you add the names and email addresses of any late registrants. Sort by distance, time and name. Save this document and send it to the Club administration.  We will use this document to update the Point Series and send out a post-event survey to all participants.
  • Copy the results table and paste it directly in the results page of your website: http://www.clubfatass.com/events/YourEventName/results/year.  Make sure your remove the column containing email addresses. If there is no results page for the current year set-up yet, go to your navigation block, choose "create content" - "story".  Site administration will then attach this new page to your website, give it the proper URL and post it to the front page.
  • The results page should contain a starter photo, followed by a report and the results table.  You can go back anytime to edit or add missing times.


Sponsors

This chapter is intended to help you, the Club Fat Ass Event Host, identify sponsors for your event. 

Sponsors are the people and businesses who support your event with their money, their product or their services.  You would be amazed at how many people and businesses out there would be happy to help you with something as kooky as a Club Fat Ass event!

Please note

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Why Bother to Seek Sponsors?

Sponsors allow you to add value to your Club Fat Ass event without increasing your costs.

Awards and Draw prizes

If your guest pays nothing for your event, but comes away with a great experience and a prize of any value, do you think they will want to come back next year?  Most merchants are happy to provide you with something of theirs for the exposure.  Company logo t-shirts or umbrellas, a gift voucher or other products and services are typical examples of what you can get for the asking and a good statement of return on investment.

Return on investment (ROI)

What does the sponsor get in return for their donation?  The better you are able to show a merchant their donation is a good business investment, the better your chances of getting a lot of donations!  It is truly amazing how this works.  Make sure a potential sponsor is aware that his business/name will be listed on the Thank You page of your website.

Sales document

We recommend you create a one-page informational brochure to present to a merchant.  It should outline the following:

  • all event details (date, location, estimated numbers of guests, media coverage, etc.)
  • some good reasons why sponsorship is a good investment
  • specify items you want and quantities
  • any follow-up the merchant can expect

Target local businesses

Which businesses in your area are looking for new business?  Which would benefit from some free media exposure?  Right…every one!  Start with businesses you deal with on a regular basis.  You already support them.  Chances are, they will support you if you ask them.

Exclusivity

Merchants like exclusivity.  If you get support from one running shoe store, it’s not considered good form to ask their competitors.  If you’re turned down by one running shoe store and their competitor supports you, however, be sure to let the one that turned you down know it!

Post Event Party 

When selecting the venue for your post event party, shop the deal around.  Pick the top 3-4 restaurants or pubs where you would like to hold the finisher event.  Meet the managers of each.  Discuss your requirements.  Estimate the total food and bar tab.  Share your sales document.  Ask for a free beer and appetizer for each participant and volunteer and some gift certificates for draw prizes.  When it comes to selecting the venue for your finisher party, consider taking your business to the person who provides the best value for your guests and your event!

 

Sharing your comments.  If you have any comments, criticisms or other thoughts on what is written here, please share them with your fellow Event Hosts.  To add a comment, go to the bottom of the page and click on "add new comment".

Printing this chapter. To print off a nicely formatted page for your records, go to the bottom of the page and clink on "printer-friendly version".