In-person and Virtual Hybrid Events

November 9, 2020

Hybrid Events

What we consider to be a hybrid event is an event that combines a live in-person component as well as a virtual online component. Traditionally this was used as a cost-effective way to increase participation, but with COVID-19 limiting capacity in venues, this is a great way to host events! This alternative delivery can help keep in-person events running safely and make up for reduced revenue with the virtual component. Many organizers choose to do either in-person or virtual, but Jasper Dark Sky and Festival of Trees and have been shining examples of how businesses can do both.

Jasper Dark Sky

Jasper is home to the world’s second largest accessible dark sky preserve. Jasper Dark Sky Festival is a star-studded, month-long festival with activities that encourage the exploration of the universe. Events include planetarium dome theatre experiences, geocaching, light shows and informative talks from experts. This year Jasper Dark Sky hosted their 10th anniversary of the festival and highlighted the theme of “Venturing Beyond Earth”. Changes made for in-person events:To comply with health authority regulation, the organizers offered a reduced capacity of about 50% for in-person tickets. They implemented limited seating (6 per group per table), physical spacing, dividers, and regulated one way traffic. They also utilized the ability to scan tickets through glass to promote social distancing between guests and staff. All guests are required to purchase their admission tickets online before arriving onsite, which helps ensure proper forecasting for capacity limits at the events. Virtual events:The organizers set up live video that guests could purchase tickets to view through pay gated livestreams. This means that the viewers at home were able to pay to tune into a real-time livestream to some of the popular events.

Festival of Trees

This year is the 32nd annual Festival of Trees, an enchanted Christmas wonderland marking the start of the Holiday season in Grande Prairie. The festival is on behalf of the Grande Prairie Regional Hospital Foundation who is aimed at working to enhance healthcare across the province. On top of the fundraising from festival ticket purchases they are also using Showpass’ Benevity integration at the checkout to accept further donations.Changes made for in person events:This year the festival will be open for 8 days instead of the usual 3 days. The reason for this is to keep the number of visitors at any given time to a minimum while maximizing the number of people who can attend. This year the festival is utilizing time-slots bookings with a limited number of people coming to the festival at any given time. Virtual component:The festival is hosting a virtual mixer called Virtual Mistletoe Mixer that can be enjoyed with cohort groups of 4, 8 or 12. Guests can tune in at home to view chefs and mixologists who will be teaching them how to make their specialty recipes and drinks. Guests will receive the recipes ahead of time so they can follow along at home. This event also includes a comedian and duelling piano show. In addition, the festival will be hosting a Teddy Bear Breakfast where parents and children can join a pancake breakfast at home with a show hosted by a local clown.Lower capacity limits can make it difficult to host an event as its been done in previous years, but implementing a virtual component is a great way to increase ticket sales and guests’ involvement! If you want to learn more about the features we offer to help host safe events during the pandemic, check out our how to host safe events blog or book a demo with us!