Tips for Successful Evening Events

October 30, 2010 No Comments

Smithsonian National Zoo:

“Lighting is probably one of the biggest challenges. While it’s important to set the right mood, it’s even more important that your guests feel comfortable and safe.” – Dan Pierron

“It’s important to think ahead so guests aren’t disappointed when they come across a quiet enclosure. The reality is that many animals may be sleeping, but having knowledgeable staff on hand to interact with guests can turn this potential disaster into a memorable experience those guests will share with others every time they think of the zoo.” – Dan Pierron


“Be flexible and plan just a few scheduled activities. We find more of the attendees just want to amble around the zoo at their own pace. Having the zoo to themselves is a real treat.” – Dale Snyder

Rosamond Gifford Zoo:

“Think like a guest and plan the event accordingly. Make people feel taken care of and make the event seamless.” – Sarah Moore

“Spend money on things that matter.” That could be a gift for an event host or chair, or valet parking if the venue is far away from the lot. Or a red carpet photo shoot that gives guests a reminder of the zoo as well as a conversation piece after the event is over. – Sarah Moore

Sell exclusive zoo experiences at silent auctions, such as Be a Zookeeper for a Day and Sleepovers at the Zoo. “We sold ‘Pancakes with Penguins,’ an opportunity to have breakfast with a dozen friends or family members outside the penguin exhibit before the zoo opens. The experience included the opportunity to meet our penguin keepers and one of the penguins.” – Sarah Moore


“If we have cold or rainy weather, our [evening event] attendance really drops, regardless of the amount of advertising or promotion. We do a lot of in-house marketing year-round for our special events to save on advertising costs.” – Laura Brennan

“We also have incorporated e-mail marketing into our special events in the last few years. We’ve accumulated quite an e-mail list by partnering with a few other local businesses and can very inexpensively send e-mails about our special evening events.” – Laura Brennan

Wildlife Reserves Singapore:

“Our recipe for success involves providing the guest with liberal servings of excellent service. This, coupled with a unique wildlife experience not found at any other tourist attraction in Singapore, makes for a memorable event.” –  Isabel Cheng


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Wapello Fabrications

Inflatables and portable amusements.

Broaster Co., The

Food programs and food service equipment.

Max Flight

Manufactures interactive virtual reality motion-platform game systems including networkable flight and roller coaster simulators.

Spectrum Sports

Climbing walls, ropes courses, go-karts and more.


Designed and manufactures PlayCard, the rechargeable debit card system.

Extreme Engineering

Industry leader in zip lines, climbing walls, jumper systems and adventure products.

Kay Park Recreations Corp.

Picnic tables, grills, park benches, planters, trash containers and more.

Amusement Entertainment Management (AEM)

Premier entertainment consultants.

Sippers By Design

Design and manufacture of specialty custom-shaped drink containers.


Flashing cotton candy cones.


Evaporative snow systems.

Empex Water Toys

Aquatons Water Toys

Castle Golf, Inc.

Planning, design and construction of miniature golf courses and family fun parks.

R&R Creative Amusement Design

Designers of unique themed parks, attractions and environments for the entertainment business.

Jane Farrell Turf and Carpets, Inc.

Commercial carpet, printed and decorative patterns, loop and cut-pile construction. Wall coverings in fluorescents, Class A fire rated. Colored turf, both traditional and neon colors.

Challenger Industries

Sports surfaces, carpets and mini-golf surfaces.

Hoffman Mint

Tokens, medals, coins and key tags.

S&S Worldwide

Large Park amusement rides.

Richie\’s Italian Ice

Italian Ice Kiosks and Carts


Namco America is a premier manufacturer of coin-op arcade attractions, ranging from the hottest titles like Crazy Typhoon and Jumpin’ Jackpot to classic game-room experiences such as the Pac-Man 25th Anniversary upright that features Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man and Galaga. Specialized pieces such as Wonka Sweetland and Flamin Finger are favorites too! For arcade gaming fun, Namco America is your answer.


Fresh food and sandwich options.


A premier source for lamps, LEDs, batteries and lighting-related and electrical products.

Northeast Insurance (NIC)

Insurance programs.

Perfect Fry

Innovative and simple-to-operate countertop deep fryer Perfect Fryers.

Cost of Wisconson

Creators of simulated environments, duplicate structures, sculpted figures, exhibits, water features, mini-golf and more.

Coast to Coast

Coin-operated entertainment, crane machines.

Weldon, Williams & Lick

Admission systems and wristband ticketing.

Family Fun Corp.

Waterpark walls for rivers, bumper boat and splash down pools.


Patented soft play design, soft playgrounds.

Wells Fargo

Commercial insurance for inflatables and event planners.

Deltronic Labs Inc.

Ticket dispensers.

Soft Play

Leader in designing, manufacturing and installing soft contained playground equipment.

Belson Manufacturing Co.

Park and recreation outdoor furniture and equipment.

Mahoning Valley Mfg.

A complete line of Imperial strollers, wagons and safari utility vehicles.

Martin Professionals

A lighting supplier of choice for the entertainment industry.

Rio Syrup

Over 250 flavors, syrups and concentrates for shaved ice, sno cones, shushes, food colors. Now featuring Hawaiian Flower Cups.

Gould Manufacturing, Ltd.

Concession trailers and Antique, Jeep and Grand Prix auto rides.


Sells capital equipment to bowling centers.

Tube Pro

Waterpark tubes.

Action Lighting Co.

Lighting supplies.

A\’maze Ventures, Inc.

Mazes for every location, new and used.

Wisdom Industries, Ltd.

Amusement ride manufacturer, new and used rides.

West Coast Netting, Inc.

Experienced netting manufacturer on the leading edge of innovation.

Muncie Novelty Co., Inc.

Admissions, financial equipment, printing and tickets.

Midway Concepts (Circus Tops)

Premier designers of stainless steel food service equipment.

CFX Composite & Effects

Special effects make-up and prosthetics

Zebec Water Sports

Large variety of waterpark needs

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