Archive for the ‘Local Organizing Committee’ Category

Managing Expectations in the Sports Event Industry

August 7, 2012

In this short video, NASC Executive Director Don Schumacher, CSEE, discusses what it takes to be successful in the sports event industry … and that the best place to start is by managing expectations.

Here with just a few of our closest friends

August 3, 2012

As our Olympic Games journey comes to an end, we finally made it to where the games began – Olympic Park.  In order to access the Park, either a ticket for a venue within the area or a day-pass that had to be purchased months in advance is required.  At first, this made no sense to me as many sponsors have interactive exhibits here, and the Merchandise Mega Store takes up a good portion of the area.  Furthermore, it is a great place to people watch.  However, upon spending a few minutes here, I understand the method to what I assumed was madness.  I am guesstimating there will be upwards of 400,000 people here today. If they had opened the doors to everyone, it would be a security nightmare, nearly impossible to enjoy and just plain crazy.  It has been a great trip and I look forward to sharing the nearly 2,000 photos I have taken.


Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events

It’s Fun and Games

August 2, 2012

Greater London has caught the Olympic spirit. Banners are up on houses, businesses and streets. Free and pay activities have been created and heavily promoted such as BT Live in Hyde Park.  Large screens have been erected at Hampton Court Palace grounds to watch competitions.  Although there has been quite a fuss about tickets being listed as unavailable even though many seats have been empty at major events (you’ve probably seen them on TV), there are still plenty of ways to participate and catch the Olympic spirit.

Olympic Flags

BT Live

Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events

What is with all of this Pink?!

August 1, 2012

A few days before we left for the Games, a friend posted a picture of the Olympics gymnastics competition floor, and it was bright pink – I mean BRIGHT pink.  I shared the picture on Facebook with the comment “wow, that’s a lot of pink”, and a few friends posted things like “It hurts my eyes” and “I am sure the men love that”.  However, now that we have seen a gymnastics competition on that bright pink floor (and have learned that pink is the color scheme of the games), I think it was a brilliant move by the LOCOG (London Organizing Committee Olympic Games).  Everything, and I mean everything a spectator would need to be able to identify, is pink – flooring at many of the venues, signage, volunteers uniforms, the big foam fingers that the “directional” volunteers hold to point spectators in the right direction, barrier coverings, etc.  It is so easy to identify Olympic Games features as they are all pink and stand out.  My overwhelming opinion of the London 2012 Games is how organised and well thought out they are – at least from a spectator’s perspective.

Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events

Where is all the Merchandise?

July 31, 2012

I came to the London 2012 Olympic Games ready to spend a good amount of pound sterlings on goodies for me, my family and our friends at home.  The problem is I can’t find an official retail outlet!  I came with the assumption there would be a make-shift merchandise shop around every street corner, but we have only found one so far, in the Greenwich Arena (site of the gymnastics competitions). They had sold out of many items on day two of the gymnastics competition and were limited in sizes for what they did have for sale.  I was shocked!  We then headed to badminton that afternoon at Wembley Arena, clear on the other side of London and a ways out, so I guessed they’d have another store with more stock. Again I was disappointed.  The 10 minute shop from the Wembley tube station to the Arena was lined with shops for food and merchandise, but as you can see in the sad picture I took, all of the merchandise shops were closed up tight.  And this is only day two of the games!  My only thought is, “What were they thinking?!”

Beth Hecquet, CMP

Director of Meetings and Events


Volunteers a Plenty

July 30, 2012

Upon our arrival in the UK in the early morning hours, we had our first taste of the Olympic spirit within steps of departing the plane. Two volunteers dressed in their bright pink and purple shirts stood at the top of the jet bridge with a welcome sign. A few steps further down the path to baggage reclaim (as they call it at London’s Heathrow Airport) we encountered scores more of friendly and helpful volunteers. And this was only the beginning. On every street corner where Olympic spectators could wander, they will find at least two volunteers; at every tube, bus and train station, there are at least two volunteers as well (and many times upwards of six to eight). All are there to make getting in and around London and the Games as easy and stress free as possible. In the London 2012 official programme (spelling is correct, this is the UK) they make sure to state there are 70,000 volunteers organized by the LOCOG (London Organizing Committee Olympic Games) there to help. And help they have, as well as given spectators a welcome feeling to a city that can be very overwhelming.

Beth Hecquet, CMP
Director of Meetings and Events

NASC Member Cities Host 17 of 19 Olympic Trials

July 12, 2012

Recently we had occasion to take a look at the cities that hosted Olympic trials events in preparation for the London Games. As we did, we realized our members have played a huge role in helping to qualify and prepare our athletes.

Of the 19 Olympic sports that held trials for the 26 sports on this year’s program (7 sports select their teams without trials events), 17 were held in NASC member cities. Both of the exceptions are former members where a staff person left the organization prior to this year. This equals 89 percent of the sports holding trials.

Since some of those sports (aquatics, for example) have four sports, there were actually 31 different trials events for the 19 sports. Swimming, diving, synchronized swimming and water polo held their events in four different cities.

NASC members hosted 29 of the 31 different disciplines within the sports, or 94 percent of all of the trials events held for the 19 sports on the program for the 2012 Olympic Games.

It could not be any clearer: NASC members play an absolutely essential role in these events.

We are very proud of each host city and look forward to seeing the athletes who qualified medal for the USA in London!

– Don

Partnerships with a Host City and Sporting Events

March 22, 2012

Much has been said about the importance of community support when bidding on events. Listen and watch as Gary Alexander of the Nashville Sports Council describes just how they work with the city and other organizations to support their events, both big and small.

A Super Host City: Indianapolis

February 6, 2012

By Jackie Reau, Game Day Communications
NASC Member

On Friday, I traveled over to Indianapolis to visit Super Bowl Village in downtown Indianapolis. I had no intention of going to the game but did want to see first-hand how the Super Bowl 2012 Committee was coordinating the fan fest opportunities. I had been keeping tabs on the planning and festivities through the Committee’s terrific website and regular email reports.

In a word to describe Indy’s Super Bowl efforts: Wow!

Sure the game was great (congratulations to the New York Giants) and the commercials were fun to watch, but the true winner in Super Bowl 46 was the city and people of Indianapolis.

Here are a few observations from Indianapolis that we can all think about when planning our next event—big or small.

Engage and Empower Volunteers

Who knew what the power of a blue and white scarf would be? More than 13,000 volunteers helped orchestrate the activities in and around Super Bowl Village and they were recognizable by their blue and white scarves—all knitted by volunteers.

Everywhere you turned, you saw a friendly smiling volunteer ready to help. They were at Monument Circle taking free photos on their iPads, greeting fans at The Huddle, the indoor merchandise shop and working the lines for fans to get their photo with the Lombardi trophy (a 25-minute wait which moved fast).

But the best part of the volunteers who embodied the spirit of “Hoosier Hospitality” was how they would finish a sentence: Have a Super Day! It was evident that the volunteers have been properly trained in customer service and had been positioned in areas that best suited their experience and interest.

Make It Fun

Free concerts, an 800-foot zip line, corn hole and stadium food. The Super Bowl Village in Indianapolis was fun! It was the state fair for football fans, and fans from around the world traveled to see it. As you walked the blocks of Georgia Street from the Stadium to the Convention Center, you would see fans in jerseys from many NFL teams, including those not even playing in the Super Bowl as well as soccer jerseys from the UK and Mexico.

The NFL Experience, with its $25 ticket (very reasonable), featured interactive exhibits from NFL Draft Day to photos with the Lombardi trophy and the live set for the NFL Network.

The pros from Wilson were making footballs just as they would at the factory. XBox and the Cartoon Network entertained the youth fans while the merchandise area offered everything a football fan could imagine.

It Takes a “Compact” Village

The best part of the Super Bowl Village was the proximity to the stadium and the convention center. The six-block, Block Party was filled with food, beverages, two live music stages, games for adults and kids and sponsor exhibits.

<Map link of Super Bowl Village:>

Fans could park once at their hotel or garage and easily walk up and down Georgia Street to the various activities.

Indianapolis has set the bar for future Super Bowl celebrations! While New Orleans, a seasoned party throwing city, knows how to manage such celebrations, I am sure their planners were taking notes on some new improvements.

Congratulations, Indianapolis! Job well done.

Create a Winning Team: Forming an L.O.C.

July 7, 2011

July/August Tips From the Mentoring Committee
By William Knox, CSEE

Director, Hamilton County Sports Authority

When hosting an event of any size it is very important to put together a good team to make sure the event is a success. Naturally, you will look within your organizations for volunteers.  Many organizations have talented individuals within their group with the necessary skills to get the job done. In addition to searching within the organization, there may also be individuals within the community that have expertise in other important aspects of the event and should also be included. The individuals selected to serve on the LOC should come from a variety of backgrounds. This will help provide insight on the various committees you will need to put together for the event. Examples of these committees include: finance, marketing, hospitality, management and operations.

Seeking the assistance of outside sources will ensure more comprehensive coverage of the event planning process.  However, relying on a member of your Local Organizing Committee (L.O.C.) that cannot dedicate the appropriate amount of time could be detrimental to the success of the event.

All members of your L.O.C. should be able to dedicate their time and talents. Members of the team must understand the time commitment expected of them and be able to provide that time. Each member must also possess qualities that will promote success and, most importantly, not inhibit the group from reaching their goals. Individuals that have trouble working in groups or have a tendency to get the group off track should be avoided. Every event requires a lot of planning; therefore it is crucial that effective time management strategies are implemented. Finally, all members must be able to bring something to the table. Members should have something valuable to give to the group, whether it is through donations, cooperative marketing opportunities or basic knowledge of event operations. The formation of a successful L.O.C with dedicated and valuable members will create a strong base that will propel your event on the path to success.

About the Guest Contributor:  William R. Knox, CSEE William was born in Gary, IN. After becoming a four sport letterman at Gary West Side High School, he went on to receive his B.S. in Sports Marketing with a minor in Business from Indiana University in 1999. After completing his undergraduate career, he accepted a position as the Director of Sports Marketing with the Bloomington Convention and Visitors Bureau. Later, he became the Director of the Hoosier Sports Corporation.  William now serves as the Director of the Hamilton County Sports Authority. William is designated as a Certifi ed Sports Event Executive and was named to the National Association of Sports Commissions Board of Directors.