Big Events Equal Little Sleep


A couple of weeks ago I finished up an internship with a large running-themed event in Eugene and I learned a lot about event management. While I participated in my fair share of manual labor, my primary task for the weekend was to manage the social media during the days surrounding the event. This responsibility allowed me to roam throughout the all the different mini-events throughout the weekend that go into planning and executing a large event like this one.

Starting with the set up, which even with teams of volunteers seemed daunting, I arrived and began documenting the day particularly taking note of anywhere sponsor signage popped up. Over the few days, moved back and forth between locations making sure everything was on track and amazingly each day’s tasks were completed slightly ahead of schedule with very few hiccups or complaints. However, most days I arrived at a time in the morning when most of my peers would be coming home from the previous night’s activities.

I learned that especially at big events, when it’s show time everybody jumps in and does what needs to be done. The teamwork between the coordinators and interns as well as flexibility of everybody was what made this event work.

While I know for certain that event planning would never be something I would want to do for a full-time career because I value my sleep too much, working this event made me see how fun and exciting event management can be.

– Melany Boulton

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About maboulton2012

My name is Melany Boulton and I'm a junior public relations student at the University of Oregon looking forward to graduating next spring in 2012. I am an enthusiastic person and very excited about the path I am currently on working towards a career in PR. I just have to figure out what I want to pursue in this incredibly diverse and unique industry.
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12 Responses to Big Events Equal Little Sleep

  1. zolfaghari says:

    The Eugene Marathon was one of your clients? That’s so awesome! I ran the 5k last year. What kind of skills did you need to take on the task of social media? That’s really cool that you played a role in such a big event. I believe the number of participants last year was in the thousands. That may seem a bit daunting for an intern to take on. Really cool to see that you took on the challenge!

  2. Great post, Melany! I’ve always wondered about the Event Planning side of PR and after reading your bit about valuing sleep…maybe I should reconsider. I, too, value sleep way too much and don’t function well without it. In PR, I’ve noticed a running theme, regardless of which side you’re on, requires a lot of team work; and without that team work, things could take a turn for the worst. Congrats on a successful Eugene Marathon, and way to go with handling the social media. You’re a rock star, Mel! Keep kicking butt as we near the end of our time at our internships!

  3. Alysha Beck says:

    Wow sounds like you really put in some hard work to help at the Eugene Marathon! I took photos and ran the half marathon the last couple of years and can imagine how much hard work goes into preparing and planning for the event. I remember how many people came to run in the marathon, so it’s definitely a big deal and so cool you were a part of it! Way to own this opportunity even though it meant missing out on some sleep 🙂 I’m sure working at an event like this is great experience to have under your belt.

  4. Shannon Sloan says:

    I’m glad you made it through the weekend! While you may not want to do event management full time, it’s great to have that experience and be able to put it on your resume. While big events like that can get hectic, it’s always fun once it comes together!

  5. I think event management falls into the category of “things you can only learn by doing.” The most amazing event planners I’ve worked with have years of experience and stare pre-event crisis in the eyes without flinching. Most of that skill doesn’t come from a textbook though. I’m glad you got to have a taste of event planning / execution during your internship. It’s something you either love or you hate, but you don’t understand without experiencing the process.

  6. michelletag says:

    Event planning definitely requires a lot of time and dedication. I just finished my duties as a sponsorship and fundraising subcommittee member for the UO Relay for Life (the event actually ended today at 8 a.m.) and there are always little hiccups along the way. Good job in helping pull off a cool event! I bet it felt awesome to complete it and see how your hard work paid off.

  7. rkaapu says:

    Wow, this sounds pretty intense. By the looks of it, events can be very difficult and time consuming. I am so happy you were able to gain this experience and get a taste of hosting an event. This is so rewarding. In life, we are surrounded by events, particularly in the journalism field and its important to know how to manuever through these events. Congrats on a job well done!

  8. pdxsx says:

    Oh man, event planning can be a huge challenge, but there is a lot of money to be made by those people who can really kick butt at it!

  9. Bree says:

    Event planning sounds like a tough job, but at the same time it seems incredibly exciting. I love planning stuff. I also like that last-minute, crazy-stressful moment when every one pitches in and gets the job done. It’s thrilling! That’s exciting that you got to experience such an amazing event.

  10. McKenzie Ingram says:

    I think that in our internships it’s just as important to figure out what we DON’T want to do, as figuring out what we do want to do. Although you admire event planning, knowing that it’s not something you’d like to do as a career is a big step in figuring out the right path for you. Good work. 🙂

  11. asharonson says:

    Event planning can be a pretty crazy industry. It sounds like you and your co-workers had some great communications skills and everyone took care a lot their duty. Sometimes, just vocalizing and keeping calm under pressure can make all the different during an event. Sounds like it was a lot of fun. Great job!

  12. codynewton says:

    I always thought it would be cool to enter in the Eugene Marathon! But I think it would be just as cool, in a different way, to be a part of setting it up. Being behind the scenes of things like that is always interesting. Do you know how many people were involved in the event? I imagine there was a lot for you to talk about since you were doing multimedia. Events like that always have a million different things happening all over the place. You would really have to be on top of your game to keep up with even half of it. Good job.

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