St. Patrick’s Day GreeneryFebruary 16, 2011 By: Donna Hood Crecca
When patrons are gearing up for the wearin’ of the green, you should already be deep into your planning for rakin’ in the green. St. Patrick’s Day is a huge opportunity for finding your pot of gold, and with it just a few short weeks away, your Celtic-themed food, drink and entertainment elements should be well underway. While putting the finishing touches on your St. Patrick’s Day promotion plan, make sure you pay attention to some crucial details. After all, there are elements of any promotion that shouldn’t be left up to the luck of the Irish…
• Crowd control…St. Patrick’s Day is all about the crowds, whether you’re along the parade route and corralling revelers, marchers and dignitaries into your place once the bands and floats have passed or you are billing your venue as the hot spot to celebrate all day and night. Anticipate a crowd, and realize that it may or may not be comprised of your usual guests and that people will be in high gear, so their expectations and behaviors may not exactly be the norm. Is your security plan ready? Do you have enough staff at the door and throughout the venue? Also, think about traffic flow at the door, and then in heavily trafficked areas (such as rest rooms) and also at the bar. Consider any changes you may need to make – perhaps shifting of furniture or adding satellite service bars - to accommodate a larger and likely rowdier crowd than usual.
• Permit me…St. Pat’s is less of a holiday and more of an event for many operators. If your celebration involves anything out of the norm for your venue – sidewalk seating and service, a parking lot transformed to a dance floor complete with bagpipers and Irish dancers or some other shenanigans - make sure you’ve filed for all the necessary permits and have them at the ready to show to any inquiring official on the big day.
• Serve safely…The Green Day is a big one for sales of beer, Irish whiskey and just about any spirited libation, and copious consumption is traditional. Now’s the time to refresh your bartenders’ and servers’ memories on the basics of responsible alcohol service. Review proper ID checking, steps to take when a fake ID is suspected and also tactics for tracking guest consumption, identifying the signs of intoxication, as well as ways to deal with patrons who are already three sheets attempting to enter the venue (hint: don’t let them in, but be diplomatic…). Need some guidance? Search keyword responsible service on nightclub.com.
Do these things now to ensure you protect your patrons, your staff and your business on the day when everyone is a little Irish.