Happy New Year! We are happy to have been part of three notable and simultaneous events on January 7th that quickly kicked off 2015 for Event Resources. If you would permit me to brag a bit, I’d like to share with you what happened that particular day because it showcases that “Hartford Has It!” and what Event Resources is all about.
For the sixth consecutive time, Event Resources was selected to provide event services for the Governor’s Inauguration’s Oath of Office. The location was the Connecticut State Armory in Hartford, where Governor Malloy’s first inauguration was held in 2011. We were called to provide a 640 square foot stage, hundreds of feet of draping, a sound system for a challenging 55,000 square foot space with 80’ high ceilings and a huge glass skylight, plus setting up 1800 chairs, laying down 8,000 square feet of carpeting, and hanging theatrical lighting.
Transforming the space from a 1909 military drill shed into a formal inauguration space required a full team of our event experts. They worked alongside several groups from the military and government to provide event project management of the many elements and crews that were necessary to produce this event. New elements at this particular inauguration included featuring the state seal and two color draping, which added a dramatic effect.
Transforming a Military Drill Shed
Already familiar with the challenges of the Hartford Armory, we brought in the appropriate sound, lighting, video equipment and skilled engineers to provide the high quality each discipline required. The high ceiling and large glass skylight created the biggest challenges for sound and lighting. The cavernous space creates echoes and sound reflections that “muddy” the sound, making it almost impossible for the live audience to clearly hear the presentations. At the same time it creates a hollow-sounding audio for the television audience.
Although the skylight brought an abundance of natural light into the Armory, theatrical lighting remained essential to make certain the stage was evenly and well lit, regardless of the position of the sun or the conditions outside. These sound and lighting challenges added to the already tough television requirements. Three video cameras were set up so the various live outlets had the best camera angles from which to choose. The sound, video and lighting crews also successfully responded to the individual demands of the numerous media outlets, as each outlet had their own needs for their particular audience.
Eighty-foot ceilings and a large glass skylight contributed to a challenging event environment at the Connecticut State Armory.
And speaking of high ceilings, hanging truss and lighting to points up to 80′ high was demanding, particularly when there were no catwalks for the riggers as there are in many theatrical venues. That none of these challenges were ever an issue is testament to the skilled engineers and technicians who worked hard to make the event run so smoothly from a technical perspective.
Eight thousand (yes, you read correctly, 8,000) square feet of carpeting was laid down for aisles and 260 feet of draping was hung to aesthetically overhaul the drill shed into a formal atmosphere. After that came unstacking and precisely aligning 1,800 chairs.
Event Resources transformed the 1909 Connecticut State Armory into a formal space for the 2015 Governor’s Inaugural Oath of Office.
Orchestrating all these elements and crew teams was Ed Woodward, General Manager of Event Resources, who was onsite for the 9 day project. To capture the complete transformation of the space from start to finish, we set up a Go-Pro camera on the balcony. This camera took one photo every 5 minutes for a total of 4,000 photos. These photos were used to create a time lapse video that condensed the 9 day project to only 2:00 minutes.
In the end, this event illustrates the confidence people have in using our services to produce a “worry free” event. That is, when everything absolutely, positively, has to be perfect.
Across the way, the opening of the Legislative Session had our crew tweaking the ceremonial area for the hundreds of lawmakers to officially get down to state business. At the same time, we also provided production management services for the 2015 Economic Forecast and Summit, a joint event from The Connecticut Business and Industry Association and MetroHartford Alliance that was held at the Hartford Marriott. It drew over 500 people, in fact, there was standing room only! The set design was literally aglow with a customized lighting and a graphic structure that continually changed color. (To see a video of the transformations, click here). Rounding out the presentation was sound, video and PowerPoint presentations that provided the much anticipated information about the economic outlook of the state of Connecticut.
The stage at the Economic Forecast from the CBIA and MetroHartford Alliance featured a truss and banner structure that glowed various colors for a stunning effect.
While we were in the neighborhood for these events, we also stopped at Infinity Hall to help them out with some furniture rentals for an Inaugural-related event. Infinity Hall is the latest in unique meeting spaces in the Hartford area. I heartily recommend you check them out for your next event.
We say all the time that whether your event is for 20 or 2000, we take care of the details with professional care to insure a “worry free” event. However, January 7th is just a sample of a day in the life of Event Resources so you can see how we are truly multi-dimensional and can make you shine for both large and small events.
My thanks to the crew and entire Event Resources team for their continued outstanding work. We all look forward to bringing your remarkable events to fruition in 2015.
Fun Video Clip: View the 9 day long set up of the Governor’s Inaugural in only 120 seconds click here.