Fete equipment hire

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 6. Fete equipment hire

Make equipment hire an agenda item early in the planning process.Every stall will need some kind of equipment. Give stall convenors a comprehensive equipment requirement list and ask them to complete the form as soon as possible, specifying exactly what they need. For example, the food stalls will need cooking equipment, ice chests or
refrigeration (a portable cold room or portable fridges), food warmers, covered serving stands, deep fryers, barbecues and more. Ask your local council about food regulations. Ensure each food stall has access to a fire extinguisher if required, to comply with local fire regulations.
Walk around the area selected for the fete. How much is undercover and protected from the elements? Use as many undercover areas as possible to provide shade from sun and shelter from rain.
Two things that are often underestimated are toilets and rubbish bins. Sure, schools have them, but do they have enough to manage a crowd? Hiring portable toilets is a sensible and sanitary investment. Likewise, hire a rubbish skip for the end of day clean-up. Don’t forget the extra toilet paper that will need to be ordered.
Before handing over money for equipment hire, source what you can for free:

  • tables and chairs from the school, or borrowed from a friendly neighbouring school
  • borrowed ice chests, barbecues and big sun shades from within the group’s community (make sure they are named)
  • marquees from local businesses (e.g. real estate agents, car dealerships, hotels) and your local council representative.
  • Coordinating equipment hire is recommended. Once your equipment coordinator has sourced the freebies, the ‘bulk buy’ principle can be applied for hiring.

A word of advice: get equipment delivered the day before. Food stalls particularly always take longer than anticipated to set up!
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