And the stress begins…

28 09 2009

I’m knee deep into Brewfest. And by knee deep I mean that the muck is really up to my neck.

We’ve added a new bar – Steelhouse. So I spent early Sunday wandering around the empty bar as they opened, taking measurements, imagining things that could happen, things that will happen…

I spent most of Sunday evening on the pittsburghbrewfest@gmail.com account, emailing every brewer I can find in the United States. Again. And emailing some of them for a third time because they still haven’t made a decision… I’m not worried, but geez it takes them a while to get back to me sometimes.

I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to get people in and moving around whatever bar is first, and then moving them between the bars… It’s really difficult. I’m trying to avoid the “tiny hallway” congestion that we ran into last year. Especially because the new hallway between Bar Room & Steelhouse is about 1/3 the size of the previous hallway!!

The only solution? Route people outside. Literally, the only option. But between each bar, it’s only 5-8 feet to walk max. Y’all are going to have to do it, regardless of the weather. I have to ask – is that too much to ask of you? I can’t see another option, so if you were there last year and have a suggestion, please leave a comment!

What do I know – I’ve got nothing on a crowd of 1,000+ people. No matter how hard I try… I can’t control where & when people do things at this event,. And no matter how I try to get people to route outside, even if it’s nice out, people may still flock to that tiny hallway… I just don’t know how to fix that. I’m hoping to reverse the “route” that you’ll travel this year – so that you END at Saddle Ridge. A much larger venue and able to accommodate more people as they gather and end the night…

If we route people outside, and the weather is cold/rainy/snow, we’re going to have portable heaters and some awnings/tents to cover those areas if needed… And we’ll have my wonderful PRFC boys out there to move you along, remind you of where you should be going, etc. And I have a feeling I might end up out there for most of my night…

The bands/entertainment is changing this year as well… I’ll post a link as soon as we’re confirmed.

There’s just so much that needs to be done. Some of it is mind-numbing stupid. Like trying to figure out where you’ll enter Brewfest so I can finally have tickets made. Oh, and trying to outsmart a Paypal button on the website so that I don’t have to ask for help to fix it (I was entirely successful on that adventure, I might add. Over the past week? Website -2, Me +35. I WIN!), or creating a Visio drawing of Steelhouse and where the permanent items are. Took me over an hour and a half (mostly because stupid Visio doesn’t have “booths” as in the restaurant table type booths as an item to add to your floorplan, nor do they have many other restaurant items available…)

And I totally entered into this year’s Brewfest thinking it would be easy-peasy and that I had 75% of the prep type stuff done already. Wow was I wrong.

Please send good, positive thoughts to me for the next 6 weeks. I’ll love you for it forever, I swear. My sanity is on the line here…

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