Once again, school carnival and field day season is rapidly heading our way. While most school carnivals and field days occur in May and June, some schools have their special days much earlier or even in the fall. Carnivals and field days represent a special challenge to us because they tend to concentrate over a very short period. There are days when we handle more than 15 school events!
For our returning schools, we pretty much know the drill regarding setup, power needs, equipment and so forth. However, for new school clients, we won’t know as much and not knowing is always a special challenge. We’ve put together this article to help you gather the information that will help ensure your event goes off without an equipment hiccup.
Choosing a Date. Most carnivals tend to be on Friday night although some of our larger ones have gone to Thursday nights. School field days occur during the last few days of school and are usually determined by the school district calendar. If you have flexibility in your date, please let us know. If you can hold your event on a day that is not jammed with school events, typically you will have a better selection of equipment and we can offer a little extra discount!
Selecting a Site. We can set up on athletic fields, playgrounds or on hard surfaces such as parking lots or gym floors. However, we cannot setup on sand or dirt fields. Those surfaces will damage the equipment. The big thing to us is knowing the type of surface ahead of time so we can load our delivery trucks correctly.
If you select an athletic field, please let us know whether it’s artificial turf or good old grass. That’s because we use metal stakes to secure the equipment on grass, but obviously not on artificial turf or hard surfaces. For those we use sandbags. Our preference would always be grass, but either way, we will need to be able to drive a box truck very near the setup location.
One thing we do not want to do is come prepared to setup on grass using stakes when you’ve decided to setup on a hard surface. Remember, we need sandbags for a hard surface. So, why don’t we just bring both? The answer is that on very busy days, we just do not have the truck space available to bring both.
Electrical Power. The biggest issue with on-a-field field setup is typically electricity. Some pieces of our equipment only require one electrical circuit. Others require two, and some of the very large ones require three. If you have a reasonably large setup, we could need seven or eight separate electrical circuits to power the equipment. Most fields do not have that much power. That means you will need portable generators to run the equipment. Please let us know the availability of power when you book and we can tell you how much power you will need and how many generators it will require.
If you are setting up near buildings, we can often find enough power in the buildings to cover the setup. While we are on the subject of electrical power, the Washington Department of Labor & Industries specifically prohibits the use of extension cords with inflatable rides. All our blower units come with 75 foot cords, so we can reach quite a distance, but we cannot extend that reach with additional extension cords.
So, What Is a “Separate Circuit”? When we use the term “separate electrical circuit” we are referring to a 120 volt electrical feed solely used to power one blower motor. That feed will be connected to a circuit breaker, which will trip if the circuit begins to overheat. While a breaker tripping is a safety feature, it certainly affects the event when one trips because more than one blower was running on that circuit. Normally, an electrical feed coming from a breaker will power more than one outlet. Please do not confuse separate outlets with separate circuits. Plugging multiple blowers into separate outlets that happen to be on the same circuit is sure to trip the breaker sooner or later.
Choosing Equipment. Carnivals and field days are usually very high attendance activities. It’s important to have a handle on how many participants you will have and choose inflatable games that are both age appropriate as well provide high participant throughput. It is certainly fine to mix in a few slower throughput games, but you don’t want the kids to spend their field day waiting in line. We can help you chose the perfect inflatables for your field day.
What about a “Carnival” of “Field Day Package”? We used to offer event packages, but quickly found out that almost every school event is unique and that packages just don’t work. So, we provide a custom package of inflatables and games along with very special school discounts. This allows you to pick the equipment you want and still get package pricing.
Insurance. FunRent is fully insured and provides additional insured certificates at no additional cost.
Is it too Late for 2012? Absolutely not! We do have several Fridays that are very busy. But if you can work with us on setup and pickup times, we can get your event done.
What Now? Call or email us and let us help. We’ve been at this for more than 25 years and really understand how to help you have the very best field day and stay within your budget
Call us: (425) 702-3700 Email Us: email@example.com