Are you looking to organize an activity to connect people in your community? Outdoor cinema events encourage friends and family to get out of their homes and into the neighborhood to watch some fun entertainment together.
You’ll need to find a suitable location; local parks are especially great. Movie night gatherings are perfect for any organization such as a church, school, or business. If you’re interested in hosting one, look below for tips on organizing an outdoor movie night.
You’ll need to figure out where to host your event months in advance. Check with parks, parking lots, apartment complexes, or other outdoor spaces that can fit everyone. You should also check if there are any accessible bathrooms nearby that guests can use. If there aren’t any restrooms located nearby, consider renting a portable lavatory to accommodate everyone’s needs. There might also be permits you must obtain, depending on location.
Keep It Free
You may or may not be old enough to remember Woodstock ‘94. The organizers set up gates to stop people who didn’t buy a ticket from getting in, but it failed. Excited fans knocked down the gates, and security was helpless to prevent them from watching the live shows.
It’s doubtful your outdoor movie night will drum up the same crazed furor as that, but it still highlights a vital tip to keep in mind. It would help if you considered keeping admission to your event free to attract a wider audience and minimize the hassle. If you are looking to recoup costs, or add a revenue stream, consider finding sponsors or having concessions. For more private and selective events, such as work outings, you should feel free to charge admission or require tickets.
Picking the Movie
Your audience will determine the movie you decide to choose. If you’re going to be in a public area where anyone can show up, you will want to make sure the film you choose is family-friendly but also enjoyable for kids and adults alike. You might also consider having theme nights and doubleheaders that can help inspire movie selections. For example, a midnight showing might lean more heavily towards horror films.
Have the Equipment Ready
The most critical tip for organizing an outdoor movie night is that you need a way to show the movie itself. Some of the equipment you’ll need includes:
- A projector that can be operated remotely and produces a bright, crisp image. Furthermore, it should be compatible with a laptop, external hard drive, or other technologies, allowing you to enjoy your movie regardless of how it is saved or streamed.
- Quality external speakers that allow all your guests to hear the movie.
- A readily available power source. You may need to bring a portable battery or extension cords to power your equipment correctly.