During the full swing of summer, we’ve had a couple of odd days of pretty heavy rainfall. However, being on an island, where it can be blazingly sunny, 89 degrees out (32 degrees centigrade for all you non-Americans), and still rain cats and dogs, this is nothing too odd. However, if you happen to have an event coming up and the rain is coming down, it’s a crisis.
When the skies turn grey and the humidity goes through the roof, it’s normally time to begin thinking about tents. And to be sure, a tent can totally save a rainy day. But even if the weather report shows beautiful sunny skies in the forecast, a tent can be a necessary piece to your event for many other reasons.
Often, an outdoor venue isn’t ideally designed for a special event. When lighting is available, it usually is more functional in nature, giving you the brightest wash of light for the area. Definitely not David Tutera-worthy. A tent is a great way to give you hang points (using the interior frame of the tent itself), where you can install all sorts of lighting to control the mood. LED lights, lanterns, spotlights, string lights, café lights, chandeliers, disco balls, almost anything that can be installed in a home or permanent establishment, can be installed on the tent frame.
Often, Hawaii’s tradewinds vary between nonexistent to 35 miles per hour. Quite gusty. Plus, our topography allows for areas of higher and lower wind, just based on where you are and what land features are around. For example, winds can sometimes funnel through natural valleys or man made wind tunnels (gaps between large office buildings downtown). Wind is also often heavy along the shoreline, where the trades come in off the ocean. While a tent on its own will not really prevent wind from coming through, it does create a stable structure upon which to hang sidewalls or windscreens.
I don’t normally recommend using sidewalls because, of course, you’d much rather have the natural beauty of Hawaii to look at (after all, if you wanted to be enclosed, you’d have just gone to a hotel ballroom). But at the very least, it gives you the ability to be comfortable, because not even the best event planner can control the weather.
3. Defining Space
One trick to creating the perfect event space is to ensure that the venue is not too large and not too small. But what if you find the perfect place for you and your 100 guests, but it’s bigger than a football field? Easy. Drop a tent in to help define the event space. It will act as a visual focal point in the expanse of the venue, and once guests are inside the tent, it will act as a visual barrier to keep their focus centralized on the event space and minimize the feeling of being lost in an overwhelming space.
Last but not least is the ability to give you shade (for a daytime event). Obviously, this does NOT work if you are considering a clear tent. But a white tent is perfect for a hot, sunny day. While there are too many factors (wind, time of year, etc) to give an exact rule of thumb, some sources say that it’s possible to be up to 40 degrees cooler in the shade than in direct sunlight.