Kasbah! took place on March 31st 2013, a new event format at a new location too. Sannich Fairgrounds was the venue chosen after much research.
Other locations considered were:
Victoria Events Centre; good location, however limited outside space for the planned fireworks and fireshow.
The Da Vinci Centre; good location and big enough, however considered too expensive.
Archie Browning Arena; good value for money, however huge venue and limitations as being rented off the city.
Sunset Room; despite being used previously for events it was deemed too small for Kasbah!.
Sannich Fairgrounds was a cost effective location, which gave us space to hold workshops, house the Kasbah! tented city and has enough outside space to perform the fire show. It also gave us the option to showcase Victoria’s Tree House Art Bus too! We hired the venue from 8am till 1am the following morning, and negotiated to go back the day after to carry out Leave No Trace at no extra charge to Kindle Arts Society. The total cost for the venue was $336.00.
Gloria, at Sannich Fairgrounds we found to be relatively easy to work with and promptly answered emails with a few hours. Visits to the site were relaxed, often with a caretaker there who was very approachable. He even attended the event in the evening for the fireshow and fireworks. The maindown fall of using Sannich Fairgrounds, and the entire event was capacity! They gave us a lower capacity than the barn would actually hold, and we later found out that this is increased on an honour system. The more we use this location they more people they allow. If we use this location again under different event lead names, please say that Kindle Arts Society has used Sannich Fairgrounds before.
Kasbah! promised to deliver a full 12hours of entertainment, shows, dancing and art to the community. To pull this off we called on members of the community to volunteer as events leads, this also helped take some a lot of the pressure off the events leads, Natalie and Chris too. The event leads were:
Greeters: Chris Marks
Deco: Kym Spencer
Lights: Dave Boon
Bar: Elana Angus
Fire Saftey: Cam Bremner
Performances: Miranda Pidwerbetsky
Sound: Matt Gibson
Rangers: Hiltz Tanner
Ticketing: Jared Warren and Nato
Workshops: Kindle Arts Education Team
Art Gran Voting Artopoly!: Chris Marks and the Kindle Arts Grant Team.
Each event lead has been asked to provide a short summery of their event lead experience at Kasbah!
Rangers: Hiltz Tanner
I don’t really have much to report. I thought our ranger scheduling and coverage worked well. We had one volunteer shift that was not filled, but I covered that shift myself. There were no incidents to report.
Greeters/Gate: Chris Marks
There are no incidents at gate and greeter to report other than the following:
• One person arrived approximately 8:30 PM and really wanted to come in and they offered a $100 donation as they were not on the guest list. A decision was made to let them in as the venue was under capacity at that time. Not being downtown, there was little to no danger of gate crashers overrunning the event.
All volunteers showed up for their shifts and some people stepped up at the event to fill shifts that were empty; the second shift that was scheduled for the red light district was unneeded but those volunteers are recognized for some of their time anyways as per the Kindle policy/bylaws. The volunteer list is attached.
Recommendations for the future:
• Better signage directing people to the front gates as people were found to be entering the venue at random as it was open on all four sides. I believe that eventually all participants were “bagged and tagged” as the guest list shows only three names were not crossed off.
• Due to human error, mine, the guest list was not printed off by last name in alphabetical order for the event which made it more challenging for volunteers to check in guests in an untimely manner; luckily, the ebb and flow of guests was manageable with only a few times that had lineups. Free popcorn with seasonings, heat and sour key candy was provided to any attendees passing by gate.
• It is recommended for short duration events like this with 200 people or more that gate/greeter be split into two lanes to facilitate peak arrival times smoothly.
It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to coordinate gates and greeters for Kasbah! 2013. A huge thank you to all the volunteers.
Fire Safety: Cam Bremner
The Kindle Arts Society spring fundraiser event, Kasbah, took place at the Saanich Fairgrounds on March 30, 2013 with no fire safety incidents.
There was a large outdoor fire show with open flame, fire performance, and fireworks. Everything burned according to plan with no problems.
Two artists applied to bring fire art to the event that could have been problematic had we been inspected by either the fire department or the Provincial Safety Authority, and were accordingly denied permission to power the proposed pieces. Neither artist brought their art.
One fire performer inquired about doing a fire breathing display but did not return my email and did not approach me at the event.
One indoor installation had a lit hookah pipe operating close to a lot of burnable material but was closely supervised and operated in a safe manner.
Another indoor installation operated a propane BBQ which would not normally be considered safe to use inside a building due to toxic exhaust gases but due to the size of the building and proximity to an open door, it did not present a significant hazard.
Lessons learned: The main fire show was delayed by 45 minutes due to set up challenges. Next time, more help will be used to get the show in place earlier.
The site caretaker was unavailable to open a locked gate when required. Need to arrange to have this gate opened earlier if we use this site again.
The neighbour was more reasonable than the venue operator in terms of permitting our small fireworks show.
Neither the fire department or the Safety Authority attended. Next time, some flame effect art will likely be permitted to be displayed outside.
Sound: Matt Gibson
Here’s some of my thoughts regarding Kasbah.
I want to start by saying you and Chris did an excellent job of organizing. Any time I needed something I could contact you and get response very quickly. This made my job extremely easy to plan! I also appreciate how approachable you are…so well received by myself, I would gladly work with you again, no questions asked!
I was very happy with how my section turned out. The sound quality exceeded my expectations and the decorating looked awesome when it was completed.
One of my goals for the event was to be approachable for the other leads if they needed anything. I did my best to work with Karina and Miranda for all their sound requirements. This turned out to be more work then I was expecting and a learning experience for me. The outdoor fireshow turned out to be amazing…I was very excited to contribute to this when I saw the finished product!!!
Sound in the venue ended up being challenging. Our plan to have two stages, plus a performance area and red light area, all with sound, this turned out to be unrealistic. Walking inside the building led to constant sound clashes. This made poor conditions for performers trying to show their events. Plus I believe it was tough on the tents in the middle as they had constant clashes.
People were also very scattered throughout the building with all the options. I don’t think that either sound camp really gained momentum. I strongly recommend that the board goes to a single sound camp option for events of this size. If we don’t we are creating too much work for ourselves and the stages themselves end up empty for too much of the event. We are changing the Otherworld sound stage to a single stage format this summer, for largely the same reasons. This recommendation isn’t about personal showmanship…I’d be very happy creating a “Gooseballz Main Stage” next time around.
I also think we need to look at where the performances fit into the events. Before the event started, I liked the idea that the performers had their own area to do their stuff. When the event occurred, the constant sound issues made it nearly impossible to perform in the same room with the sound camps. This lead to competing for audiences plus competing with the sound itself. We had unscheduled stoppages at both stages through out the night to try and resolve these issues. Next time I recommend we include performance time at main stage, so competing doesn’t have to occur. If we decide to have dancing and performing occurring at the same time, we need to plan different rooms for this to prevent sound clash issues.
Budget is another concern for sound. We have a number of people who source certain ingredients for stage setup (ie. DJ booth itself was entirely sourced.) Where we fall short in sourcing is speakers with enough wattage to fill a large space. We can source some smaller speakers, but nothing large enough for spaces the size of Kasbah. I recommend to the board that we adopt a $200 minimum budget for sound rental. When this is used we can provide a combination of rental and sourced equipment for a very high quality sound rig. What we used for Kasbah totaled around $20,000 retail and sounded very good. For $200 I believe this is excellent value! I urge the board to please keep this in mind for future consideration.
I want to say that I am very happy to be working these events for the community. I get so much more positivity then negativity when I’m involved, what I stated above is my face value impression of our sound needs in an event.
Lights: Dave Boon
$100 initial budget was not enough to modify entire venue lighting, though some of the gels used to color the barn CFL bulbs can be re-used at the venue next year. The lighting aesthetic of the barn is naturally poor (125W compact fluorescents), and the venue is huge…in a smaller venue with better natural aesthetic (lounge, clubhouse) the requirements would be lower. Theme tents were responsible for their own lighting – the exception being red light district and main stage. Lighting did not know that red light district needed to be lit – involvement at a leads meeting or contact with each lead would have helped this. There was some overlap/lack of communication between lighting and decorations, which worked out in the end because decorations set up lighting for certain things (bar, gifting tree) which lighting lead did not have the resources to deal with. For a future event it would be good for lighting to have at least 1 dedicated assistant for setup although people were around to help out.
Pacific Audio Works is recommended for higher-quality gobos (used for dance floor at main stage), theatrical lighting, and gels; Long and McQuade for lasers and lower quality lighting effects.
Total man-hours to set up/tear down: 8
Bar: Elana Angus.
A Numerated Rant in no Order:
1. Bars are unpredictable. You can try to predict, based on past consumption, location, time of day, people attending, but they are unpredictable and that is life.
2. It would be easier to serve only beer and cider than hard and all of the mix. This takes a ton of mix, about 1/3 of the ice and some cups out of the equation. Also, if the bar opens earlier, people are more likely to drink cider than highballs because it seems less like alcoholic behaviour, but forget I said that and refer to point 1.
3. You need about 100lbs of ice for a 50L keg and another .75lb of ice per person who will be drinking mixed drinks. If you buy this in a grocery store it will be three times more expensive than if you buy it at the ice and water store beside DQ on Douglas St ($7 for 25lbs).
4. For each ounce of liquor you need approximately 8 ounces of mix (1 oz booze, 3 oz ice, 8 oz mix in a 12 oz cup). We went with 10 oz per oz of liquor. This makes the formula easy. If you have 20L of hard and the formula is 10:1, then you need 200L of pop and juice to mix with. This also ensures you’ll have enough for the folks who want just a coke or the child who wants just juice and the variety to accommodate differences in drink preferences. Liquor licenses encourage us to give free non-alcoholic drinks to DD’s. Buying more mix is better, although a hassle, because running out is worse than having to return thing the next day.
5. I purchased 40% gin: 30% vodka: 30% rum and that seemed to work well. People seem to consistently love their gin in our community (looking at the last 3 parties where I have worked a bar). I might be tempted to increase that to 45% gin: 30% vodka: 25% rum next time.
6. Things that volunteers need to be briefed on: ice in first, then booze, then mix. This ensures all the booze goes in the cup, the drink doesn’t get watered down with mix, and the pop doesn’t fizz up by plunking the ice in, whereby making all the booze spill out. Ice first. About 60% needed a quick lesson on working a keg.
7. Central Saanich requires you to bring a copy of your rental agreement at the time that you apply for a license. This is not the case in other municipalities, but it could never hurt to go prepared with this document wherever you apply in case Central Saanich starts a trend.
8. Make sure that the number of people you say are attending on the liquor license is consistent with the number of people that you say are attending the event on the rental agreement. At Kasbah the rental agreement was for 150 people even though the renter agreed to 200 attendees. This meant that we were only issued a license for 150 people’s drinks.
9. The formula that the police use for issuing licenses is as follows: 1 drink per person over the age of 19 per hour to a maximum of 6 drinks per event.
10. I was going to say that bars are a lot of work for not a lot of gain, but it seems like the Kasbah bar brought in $530, which is not so bad. If people had drank all of the booze we had available, we would have made a ton of cash, so it’s really hard to tell. Maybe they are worth it if someone is willing to put in the effort.
11. I found it hard to communicate with Bonkers Bar for planning, but they are pros and don’t really need much from the main bar. They grossed $155 and added an extra element to the party, in my opinion. We provided ice and 2 x 26’s, they provided everything else.
12. A keg works out to about $1.30 a serving (including ice) if you sell it all. Bottles and cans work out to $2.10 a serving but full boxes are returnable.
13. Never be tempted by the savings to buy bigger bottles of hard liquor. They are hard to pour (heavy and awkward) and you can’t get the quick pour spouts into them. They are also unreturnable if you use half, which would cancel out all of the savings. Always get 26’s.
14. If Kindle Arts events want to have hard liquor in the future, I would recommend investing in quick pour spouts. These are available at the Real Canadian Wholesale in Esquimalt. They are even better than the ones you rent and they are cheap. They make it easier and faster to pour and minimize waste.
15. Kindle Arts should also invest in 1oz shot glasses. People often think their shot glasses are 1oz because they look the same as the ones in a bar, but that’s an optical illusion! Home shot glasses are usually 1.3 or 1.5oz and industry standards are 1oz, which is what is on the liquor license. These are also available at the wholesale store in Esquimalt.
16. A huge float is necessary. Call it into the bank a day in advance if you can. I didn’t know this and they couldn’t give me all of the 5’s I wanted. Other places that were selling at Kasbah were not prepared with their floats (exception being Paulina, of course) and their customers asked to tap into our float. Perhaps a reminder to other vendors to get more float then they think they need would be a good idea for future parties.
17. Morgan has a spreadsheet with all of the financial details from the event including what I bought, what I returned, and how much profit we made.
18. We bought cups at $.80/cup and sold them for $1 instead of giving away cups. Perhaps this drove home the idea to BYOC, perhaps this just annoyed people, but we washed them and saved them for future events, so I think it was at least more eco-friendly.
19. I think we made about $75+ on tips.
20. In my opinion, this bar went really well despite slow sales, and I think all of the people that worked it deserve a gold star.
21. I used the left over booze from prom decom and sneakily sold the left over beer. There is about 1.5 L of hard left over from this party in Kindle Art’s supply.
22. Mood lighting for the bartenders was appreciated once the sun went down.
That’s all I can think of for now!
Kasbah! featured workshops, these were organised by the Kindle Arts Society Education Team. The event leads asked for several workshops to be planned for the afternoon section of the event and to be family orientated too. The workshops were:
Stilt Walking @4:30pm- 6pm
Imagination Station @6pm -1am
As well as the organised workshops, we also had a few spontaneous workshops appear that greatly added to the atmosphere of the day. Slack line walking and felt gnome making for just an example.
As event leaders we were grateful for the workshops that were organised, however we were a little disappointed in the number of workshops over a 12hour period. We thought that more could have been organised, given that we had written a list of ideas for the Kindle Arts Education Team to be in keeping with the Kasbah! theme.
Artopoly Art Grants
Art grant voting took place at Kasbah! on the day, a first for Kindle Arts Society. The guidelines were developed by Natalie, then modified where needed and approved by the Kindle Arts Society Art Grants Team. The guidelines were as follows;
Kasbah! Voting Guidelines
- $5 Artopoly voting money issued per attendee; To be given by Greeters on arrival at Kasbah!
- All voting buckets will be clearly labeled, sealed for the duration of the event in a conspicuous place with a short explanation of the artists vision, near to the art as possible; To be less than 200 words and submitted on or before March 17th.
- Artists will receive a proportionate amount of funding, if they get 13% of the Artopoly money, they get 13% of the available money from ticket sales for Kasbah!; To be distributed by Kindle Arts Society as soon as possible after Kasbah!
- Money lost or unaccounted; ex. If only $885 is collected in voting buckets out of the $1000 distributed, artists will receive the relative funding as in 3 above and 6 below.
- Artopoly money is not good for food or bar purchases;
- KindleArts will not keep any of the Artopoly funding.
- All artists must agree to have photos taken of the concept art AND the final art used by KindleArts for the purposes of promoting the society. The artist’s name may be withheld upon the artist’s request.
- Art grant voting recipients are not specifically required bring their art project to another KindleArts event, although we hope they do and they might get more community votes; artists get the money the community allocated to them with minimal bureaucracy. This money is given on an honor system but recipients are required to submit receipts for the amount of funding they received within three months of receiving the funding or when the project is done, whichever comes first. Not submitting the receipts will disqualify the applicant from participating in future community voting initiatives. If more time is needed to submit receipts the recipient may request an extension in writing from the Art Grant Team. Go make Art! – This is a separate art grant system from the Kindle Arts Society quarterly grants.
- Buckets will be collected at 11:30 pm by the art grant committee and counted; the results will be announced at 12:30 AM.
- Potential recipients must register with Natalie Gregory by March 15th; there will be no submissions accepted at the event that have not pre registered.
On the day of Kasbah! all those that had pre registered to bring art successfully showed up with their art, it was show cased in the Artopoly Art Gallery. Each person was given their $5 of voting money and the voting was a follows;
Pleasure Pier: $98.20
Tree House: $271.69
Life in Fire: $81.83
Custom Corn pulled out and votes were split evenly between the rest of the Artopoly participants.
Artopoly successfully allowed each attendee at Kasbah! to be interactive and participate. Huge thank you to Dave and Abbey Boon for their contribution to the Artopoly project, they devised the name and designed the voting money.
Theme Area’s Tents
The community was asked to contribute to Kasbah! through volunteering to run a theme a tent or area at the event. The initial up take was slow, and we face some community concerns to how tents would be made or provided. However as the weeks went by people started coming forward to help and we quickly followed up on any leads to carports, fabric and shade structures we were given. An interactive layout map was developed by Natalie online, and available to all event leads to help develop the eventual layout of Kasbah! and the tents. The tents/area’s were as follows:
Gooseballin –Dave Boon and Bonkers Bar
Massage Camp- Liam Levalle and Ethan Mallis
The Empress Hukka Lounge- Ashes and Noel
Kink- Jared Warren
Clothing Recycle- Dezi Degan
Workshop- Kindle Arts Education Team
Kids Zone- Natalie Gregory, Nicky Picky and Abbey Boon
Tree House Art Bus- The Tree House Crew
Flying Carpet Photo Booth- Terry Bieman
Performance Zone- Miranda
Main Stage- Matt Gibson
Fire Performance- Karina Strong, Cam Bremner and Ibby
Leave No Trace
The part the nobody enjoys, suffering the after effects of Kasbah! a strong team of around 20 people showed up. Kasbah! was packed up, shipped out with no trace in approx. 4hours the following morning. Breakfast was provided by the event leads. We believe that the site was left I better condition than what we found it, including repairs to a gate in the field used for the fire show and super clean bathrooms, defiantly not too clean when we arrived on site post event.
Conclusion: Natalie Gregory
Kasbah! was a very ambitious project, not only for a first time event lead but on a time scale of a 12 hour event. It was way too big an event for one day! In hindsight Sannich Fairgrounds is a good location for an event of 8 hours during the day, but not a 12 hour Burner event that runs into the evening. When it got to midnight I wish we had picked a different venue, one that we could have camped at and carried on the event till the wee hours.
Research within the community post event has showed that if Kasbah! is to run a second year it needs to be moved out of town to a camping location for one or two nights. The event leads next year should seriously consider this, and two venues have already been highlighted; Eagles Hall in Duncan and Sunny Daze in Shawnigan Lake. The scale of the event was too big for just 12 short hours.
I loved working with my event leads, and owe them so much for making this event happen. They were amazing at pulling this off, along with the board of the Kindle Arts Society and the community too!