Arrive at least an hour before presenters were told to arrive. Many presenters will arrive early. The two hours before the fair begins are usually the most hectic.
If possible, have handcarts and pushcarts ready to help presenters transport their materials from their car to the fair site. Have name tags sorted by group—this will speed up check-in.
Check in the presenters and give them a program, their name tags, as well as an optional welcome package. Let them know how/when they will be eating lunch, what time clean-up is, and have a volunteer direct them to their table. Have your own table already and somewhat set-up, so you can easily transition from presenter check-in to greeting visitors. Make sure arrangements for parking are clear.
This is when presenters will realize that they need things. If you are in a venue that has plenty of resources available, great; however, try and bring things such as easels, table easels, pens, crayons, glue, scotch and heavy duty tape, scissors, bottled waters, etc. Once all the presenters are in place you are ready to open your fair to the public.
If there is a charge to attend the fair, make sure you have people who can sell tickets and control access. Provide people with programs, so that they get an idea of the presentations and can decide the order in which to attend things. Make sure that the program includes any events or presentations that are timed or scheduled for certain times of the day. Guide people through the fair and have volunteers on hand who will be able to answer questions.
Remember to have fun and visit your presenters during the day to see them in action. Take photographs of the event as you walk around.
After the fair, organize (if possible) a reception or dinner either for presenters (if the group is small enough) or for the small crew that worked together to put on the fair. This is a great way to network, to review the logistics of the day, and to plan for next time!
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