RCS End of Summer Market
Marriott City Center informed us late July that they would not be giving us space this year to hold a market. The Service Project Committee discussed and decided to look for alternatives. Finding a space at no cost was going to be an impossible task.
Visiting The Place with Rita Malvone on Aug 5, they offered us the week d of Sept 1&2, free of space rental cost, but all labor and additional tables and tents costs would have to be borne. After discussion with our President Linnet, it was decided to proceed, despite the time constraints and weather risk. Our target was to raise rmb 15,000 after costs, from collection table fees from vendors. Our charity beneficiary would be the Library Project by the Lingshan Charity Foundation. The Library Project has established over 1,800 elementary school libraries. It has put more than 1,200,000 Chinese language children’s books into the hands of eager young readers. Over 600,000 children now have access to improved educational infrastructure. Together we are changing the world, one book at a time.
The decision was to do a two day Market with 40 vendors each day, and based on the rooftop floor plan, we would have 8-10 F&B vendors and the rest would be for retail. We immediately set out recruiting vendors, and reached out to the club for the same.
We spent the next three weeks soliciting potential vendors, and planning the event. Several vendors from our 2017 Xmas market confirmed to participate and many more confirmed. Rita put in a tremendous amount of work and time to sign up vendors and collect payment. Terri Lau was also helpful in introducing several vendors for both F&B and retail booths. It was a very small team that planned and executed this event.
A week prior to the event, we had confirmed all tables were taken and table fees collected. A big push was made to media, online magazines and through the Rotary network. We recruited some volunteers from the club members and a few Rotaractors to help coordinate the set up.
The weekend weather was unstable and Sunday brought some heavy rains. This affected the attendance but we were still able to pull in several hundred visitors each day. We had DJ music on tacks that were played over donated speakers and created a jovial atmosphere both indoors and out. Many vendors commented that they felt it was a very good market as far as the quality of vendors were concerned and that they had more business and contacts than from other similar markets.
After costs we raised a little over rmb 26,000 which will all be donated to the Library Project, and will enable the club to participate in a new library building event.