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Thread: Crowd control- limiting show length?

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    Registered User Paul Lowe's Avatar
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    Default Crowd control- limiting show length?

    So our show was SLAMMED the last 3 nights... mostly from 7PM to 8PM.

    We live at a 4-way corner and cars were lined up in all 4 directions.... which means half those people had a crappy view- along with a long wait :-(

    What are you guys doing when things really get backed up?

    I've heard some folks drop the number of sings/sequence. I tried this- didnt have much of an effect. Or do you get REALLY stingy and drop it to 2 or 3 songs?

    Trying to prepare for a few more busy nights and looking for some ideas.

    Denny?

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    Havin fun ! kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Lowe View Post
    So our show was SLAMMED the last 3 nights... mostly from 7PM to 8PM.

    We live at a 4-way corner and cars were lined up in all 4 directions.... which means half those people had a crappy view- along with a long wait :-(

    What are you guys doing when things really get backed up?

    I've heard some folks drop the number of sings/sequence. I tried this- didnt have much of an effect. Or do you get REALLY stingy and drop it to 2 or 3 songs?

    Trying to prepare for a few more busy nights and looking for some ideas.

    Denny?
    Ha ! Welcome to the fire. There are lots of ways and sometimes you just need to experiment. The most successful crown control method that I employed was to play an "all lights on" religious song after a handful of sequences. I signaled the end of the show and cars would move.

    Another item that helped was .. I made my own announcements and asked cars to keep moving when in front of the house, and to park on side-streets. I don't know your intersection, but would it be possible to create some signs to keep cars moving ? Perhaps to give instructions for where they might park and walk back to view the "show."
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Back to Work <unretired> so I went Static in 2017. Planning xLights when I retire <again>. Maybe 2019 ?

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    Registered User Samj435's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    I only run 2 songs. It sometimes keeps the traffic moving. Get yourself a traffic wand and a reflective vest and get ready. If it rains too much Tuesday and Wednesday, get ready for the busiest nights imaginable for Christmas Eve + Christmas Day. Last year, my busiest day was Christmas night, and I've already had that much traffic and more so far. The pro's suggest 5 min or less for a show on these busy nights.
    2014: Lights - 75,000; Channels - 500 Renard AC, 75 Renard DC, 10,000 Pixels; Vixen 3.0

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    Registered User Don Williams's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    As Denny said "Welcome to the fire" I well know what all of you are going through ! This was the main reason we move our display to downtown Wendell. I have tried everything . One thing that sort of worked was to have a intermission between shows but did not work at all times. Having a larger venue with plenty of parking has really worked for us TILL LAST WEEKEND !!! We had the largest crowd ever (est. 3000 to 4000 ) You could hardly find a parking space in Wendell. It can happen to anyone . Thankful to the police we got through it.

    Just sit back and enjoy the moment. You stay in this hobby any length of time you will have this problem occur. Hope you all survive the rush coming this week and just enjoy the hard work you have put into your display.

    Merry Christmas Everyone
    Don Williams
    Lake Myra Christmas
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    Registered User Paul Lowe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Yes, we had about 15-20 people just abandon their cars and walk up to the front yard. Unfortunately we have no sidewalks, so they were camped on the lawn (mine and the neighbors directly across the way).

    Luckily (kind of) I had installed a outdoor speak in front (for our Halloween night extravaganza) and I turned it on for them....

    I had dropped the show to 5 songs, it will be painful choosing just 2-3 ;-)

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    Havin fun ! kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Lowe View Post
    Yes, we had about 15-20 people just abandon their cars and walk up to the front yard. Unfortunately we have no sidewalks, so they were camped on the lawn (mine and the neighbors directly across the way).

    Luckily (kind of) I had installed a outdoor speak in front (for our Halloween night extravaganza) and I turned it on for them....

    I had dropped the show to 5 songs, it will be painful choosing just 2-3 ;-)
    You can keep all your songs. The important thing is to create some kind of event to get them moving. Intermission is a great one, all lights on is another. If you want only two songs between intermissions, then I would run the two songs several times with several intermissions. Then run a couple different songs with more intermissions. It's a long schedule to build but it will help your personal boredom from too much of the same song.

    Make up your announcements to direct people where you want them. It's a good idea to have outdoor speakers and FM broadcast, so everyone gets the announcements. I am moving my speakers into our garden today (with some protection from plastic storage cases).

    If you simply stopped your lights and went dark, then everyone would leave. So there has to be some middle ground between that and keeping everything running. I am stretching to remember how Don did his intermissions, but I think he has a few selected lights areas that would ramp up to a low dim setting, and also play some background music at a very low volume (compared with the songs).
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Back to Work <unretired> so I went Static in 2017. Planning xLights when I retire <again>. Maybe 2019 ?

    Falcon - 3 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 288 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
    10' Pixel MegaTree, CoroFlakes w/Pixel Modules, Pixel RBLs, 2 Pixel Matrix 16x25, 10" RGB Ornaments, 7x230 Pixel Icicle Matrix,
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    Registered User ggusta's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    If you don't do this already, maybe having some sort of shorth announcements sprinkled between songs in your show broadcast to inform them as to what you want them to do, when the show starts, when it ends, reminders that traffic has the right of way, to keep moving or whatever.

    This is our first year with any noticeable traffic, it's one of the reasons I do not want the display to become too elaborate (for my house and my street and most of all my neighbors) like Blaine's or Denny's (Or Don's!! lol) because all that traffic would be about to give me an anxiety attack. :-) And yet, it continues to grow and grow....
    Clayton NC, Gregg Gusta & Son Ben, Was converting to LED lights gave up, went back to incan!! not a single pixel in sight!
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    Registered User Samj435's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    It's all fun and games until the cops show up. I recommend against using the phrase "ah, I see you brought me more lights". No sense of humour.
    2014: Lights - 75,000; Channels - 500 Renard AC, 75 Renard DC, 10,000 Pixels; Vixen 3.0
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    Registered User Paul Lowe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Quote Originally Posted by Samj435 View Post
    It's all fun and games until the cops show up. I recommend against using the phrase "ah, I see you brought me more lights". No sense of humour.
    We were fine.We had a huge crowd, biggest, ever. However I had planned ahead:
    - 2 people out with those traffic director wands
    - show shortened to 3 songs
    - voiceovers directing people where to go, and inviting them back after xmas for the full show

    Only glitch was 1 neighbor, who parked across the street.... ugh.... I don't think it was intentional, it was a kid home from college, so likely oblivious to the world around him!

    Mostly we gave up on queuing cars in an semblance of order and sent them down the street to park and just walk up- had outdoor speakers pumping out the tunes.

    Also dressed as Santa for the first time... THAT was a huge hit.... and a humbling experience.

    btw- we handed out candle canes for the first time (and really underestimated how many we would need!- thank god for Walgreens!).
    We mostly passed them to the little ones/kids. Anyone else count canes as some sort of measure of # of visitors?

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    Havin fun ! kidcole's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Lowe View Post
    We were fine.We had a huge crowd, biggest, ever. However I had planned ahead:
    - 2 people out with those traffic director wands
    - show shortened to 3 songs
    - voiceovers directing people where to go, and inviting them back after xmas for the full show

    Only glitch was 1 neighbor, who parked across the street.... ugh.... I don't think it was intentional, it was a kid home from college, so likely oblivious to the world around him!

    Mostly we gave up on queuing cars in an semblance of order and sent them down the street to park and just walk up- had outdoor speakers pumping out the tunes.

    Also dressed as Santa for the first time... THAT was a huge hit.... and a humbling experience.

    btw- we handed out candle canes for the first time (and really underestimated how many we would need!- thank god for Walgreens!).
    We mostly passed them to the little ones/kids. Anyone else count canes as some sort of measure of # of visitors?
    Good planning Paul ! I did the Santa Suit thing every Christmas eve since 2009. We used the small candy canes for a few years and them switched to the wrapped candy cane balls from Walmart. They taste better too .. I cannot remember the exact numbers, but the quantities grew each year. I think I passed out about 1600 to 1800 in 90 minutes last year. I carried a basket and family members would keep my basket full as I passed them out to each car. Once we got all the cars moving, we kept them moving the whole time .. so each car could come by Santa ..
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Back to Work <unretired> so I went Static in 2017. Planning xLights when I retire <again>. Maybe 2019 ?

    Falcon - 3 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 288 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
    10' Pixel MegaTree, CoroFlakes w/Pixel Modules, Pixel RBLs, 2 Pixel Matrix 16x25, 10" RGB Ornaments, 7x230 Pixel Icicle Matrix,
    Classic 20' AC Megatree, TIR Destiny RGB Spots, RGB Blowmolds, Wireframes, and Inflatables with External Light Control

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    New Member sneisler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Crowd control- limiting show length?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Williams View Post
    As Denny said "Welcome to the fire" I well know what all of you are going through ! This was the main reason we move our display to downtown Wendell. I have tried everything . One thing that sort of worked was to have a intermission between shows but did not work at all times. Having a larger venue with plenty of parking has really worked for us TILL LAST WEEKEND !!! We had the largest crowd ever (est. 3000 to 4000 ) You could hardly find a parking space in Wendell. It can happen to anyone . Thankful to the police we got through it.

    Just sit back and enjoy the moment. You stay in this hobby any length of time you will have this problem occur. Hope you all survive the rush coming this week and just enjoy the hard work you have put into your display.

    Merry Christmas Everyone
    Don Williams
    Lake Myra Christmas
    Hi Don!
    Congratulations on another successful year. It is fun. I'm from Kings Mountain and our communities are very simular. Outside the two largest cities in NC. We also took simular paths. Moving our shows from home to downtown. It's been great seeing all the kids that are amazed with the show. Here is a link to our show shot by someone I don't know. I'm trying to get a professional one done.

    Anyway, last year we made the move to the CCR tree mixing Light-o-Rama with it. I bought it from Holiday Coro. If you are interested in pursuing it too I would be glad to help. It cost me around $2000 to build it, but the sequences are only $35 after that. It quickly became the star of the show. Happy holidays!
    Scott Neisler
    Kings Mountain Downtown Fantasy Light Shoe

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