Now that the first event of the year has come and gone I am getting more excited about the "official" beginning of the show season. As many will agree, The twin Easter Shows in the Muny parking lots is the unofficial, official start of the Saint Louis car show season. I for one, will be there. At least, it is the plan. There is no flyer yet and no official word which leads me to the heart of this post...
Let Everyone Know
I know I have harped on about this, but it is tremdously important. It is not only important to Area Rides, but for the spectators as well. I have lost count the amount of times I have been stopped at shows and asked about upcoming events. This is fine by me as I enjoy meeting and talking to you all, but many times I have no answer. Sometimes it is due to my poor memory, but many times it is because I just do not know.
In my defense, here is an example of how most of the information gets posted on the Area Rides calendar. I first go to the links page. I begin at the top of the clubs section and click all the sites. I scour each club site for any new event announcements. Some have a list of shows, others will tell of their plans for their members' attendance. I grab as much info as I can. Then I move on to the next club on the list. I then repeat the same with the rest of the links like events, event organizers, racing, tracks and so on. Once I've gotten through the entire list of links I start again a few days later to search for new stuff.
I also use Facebook, but history has proven that events usually get listed only a few days before the actual event.
I do get flyers and info via email. These are sparse though. I will typically get about a dozen a year.
I always grab flyers at shows. If I see someone handing them out I will ask for one.
This is a lot of work. Work, I must add, that I do not mind doing. I got myself into this. I got that. The trouble is that I tend to inadvertantly miss items. It takes about a week to go through my entire event discovery routine. I have missed listing shows because I found them a few days after they've already happened.
How to Let Everyone Know
The moment you have determined a date for your show let me know. I have no problem adding "More Info Soon" on the listing. I will also add a link to the event's site if there is one. This way, even if I do not get the latest information, viewers can click for more. Once you have more details, I can fill them in. It just gives the public time to plan out their show and cruise schedule.
Here some more tidbits to help:
- The more info the better. The AR Calendar has no limitation to how much info is included. Give it all! People like to know what classes are included, if there is food and drink available or if there will be dash plaques and so on. Use Area Rides to have the information that could not fit on the flier. If there are scheduled daily events post them as well. People like to know when their car will be judged.
- Add an address. I know it sounds obvious, but many do fail to add it. Most times organizers will have just a park's name. I know it may happen in a small town, or there is plenty of signage about, but it does help. I have actually heard this in response to my wanting an address: "The same place it was last year." I wasn't there last year. If I don't know where an event is (or at least within a one block distance) I will not go. I have had to look up the park or lot on Google Maps before. Again, I don't mind the work, but I am not infallible. Mistakes can happen. If I have to look it up, that means others will need to too. Just include it, save everyone a lot of hassle.
- Post it everywhere. Send Area Rides the info first, of course, but also send it to sites like AR. The Lakers Club on Hemmings.com, John Skinker, the Saint Louis Camaro Club and more. Even tell other clubs, speed shops and event organizers. Become friends with the webmasters. Suggest link and banner exchanges. It will help in more ways than one!
- Make yourself available. Email and phone numbers are essential- have at least one of each. Be sure to have someone receiving them who knows what is going on or can relay the call to someone who knows. If you cannot be the contact assign someone with the task. Maybe even have daytime and evening contact info if need be.
- Rain Date! If you have an alternate date make it known. Should it be canceled let Area Rides and the other sites know. Note: Area Rides has a specific section for last minute cancellations. If it is "rain or shine" make that known too.
I should point out that 99% of the show info I get is great. Before you send out the final flyer send it to me and I'll help proofread it. You can never have too many eyes checking for errors!