You and your weird friends think y'all are ready to throw a rally, now what?
I know most of the time getting together with a bunch of mopeders turns into a good time very quickly, that being said there needs to be time set aside in advance to discuss and decide on what you and your club of franz want out of this rally.
Deciding who is responsible for certain tasks that need to happen or responsibilities is key in not letting the responsibility fall on one person ( unless the rally is being hosted by an individual, in which case, good luck you crazy ). Let's remember everyone wants to have fun at a rally, even the people planning it. Early planning, prep, and open discussion among the group allows for a smooth, less stressful rally.
Have a PLAN
There's a pretty standard template when it comes to rallies but, it is in no way set in stone. I'll leave this open to interpretations by each club or individual. It goes:
- Rally on a weekend.
- Ride Friday night.
- Ride Saturday, hold raffle and give away a silly bike
Possible Sunday ride, mostly everyone hugging and crying and wishing the weekend was longer.
Some rallies deviate from this template due in part to the nature and length of the rally. eg. river, camp, pinball, bakers dozen-esque types...
Don't be scared to try something different and think outside of this box we've made for ourselves as well.
Specific examples of rally themes and ideas:
- BLK Moon Rising Denver: Choose Your Own Adventure Scavenger Hunt!
Moped games are always fun:
- Slow race
- Clutch race
- Foot down
- Hill climb race
- Obstacle course
Every event has sponsors. This can be local businesses you love to support, individuals that have a lot of love to give, organizations that support your mission. Whatever the sponsorship opportunities are, you won't know until you ask.
that's where a sponsorship letter comes in. As a club, create a professional sounding letter head that asks for donations, support, or specific things (whatever you decide). That letter should include an explanation of who you are and what's going on. Be direct, and tell them what you are looking for from them. Also, expect to return the favor and promote that entity. In your letter it might be prudent to include how their support can be rewarded (promotion, revenue, direct inclusion in the events, etc...) Confidence is key, you are about to have a ton of fun and that should come through in your messaging.
More is better in this situation. Do not get upset if redbull does not sponsor you. likewise, do not get your hopes up on specific sponsors as it likely won't pan out. Instead, choose a variety of entities your group likes and do an email blast. Worst that can happen is they say no thank you. If that happens, send them a cordial thank you as anything's possible the next time you want sponsors.
Let's say you do get a positive response and someone wants to sponsor you. Be clear about what you are getting, what they are getting, and a deliverable timeline. Ex: Our event is 9 weeks away, we would like to pick up your contributions 3 weeks before. This way you have time to prepare your rally packs and aren't making last minute runs to Dollar Tree for crazy straws and pregnancy tests.
Sponsorships come in many forms:
- Rally pack toys
- raffle items
- party space
In some instances, entities can even offer to help plan, and provide connections (referrals) to other businesses that would help out.
This is why it pays to be have a professional email. bigskunk87@hotmail isn't likely to get many responses. LadyKingsMopedClub@gmail MIGHT have more success.
On the topic of what you can do for in return for that sponsor, it's all over the board:
- Maybe you want to promote their business every time there's an announcement. Maybe their logo can go on the rally shirt or the itinerary.
- Maybe include them in your rally video.
- if it's personal enough, invite them out! give them free access to whatever you have going on.
If you've done a good job, you'll have businesses coming to you in droves, excited to support what you are doing, and you'll have so much sponsorship opportunities you won't know what to do with!
I remember a rally where SMOG reached out to a banner company the donated a banner the the rally name and all the sponsors. This could help give you some value add for your potential sponsors.
You'll need to get the word out somehow. A promo video and a hot flyer are the go to's in the moped community but that's not stopping you from getting that bi-plane to fly a banner and spell out the rally name in the sky am I right?
Ancient Propaganda: Moped rally
Here is a bunch of examples Moped_Rally_Videos
Use the resources in the community. Get your flyer and dates on the MA calendar. Reach out to Moped Monday Podcast or 2nd Chance Podcast they'd both help hype your event.
Act like a local band and past out hand bills for your rally when you hit other rallies.
Personal reach out to near by clubs.
Personally I like to plan rides around what our club thinks are our local stomping grounds because it's familiar territory for the group. That doesn't always workout though because we want to show out of towners a good time or what our city is really like right? So throw in some good side stops that lead the ride around to actually see the city. I've been to rally's where the whole ride is just a bar hop within a few miles. While that is fun people don't just haul their moped across state lines to see the insides of bars they want to experience your city.
SAFETY SECOND... i mean first! FIRST!
If you plan to take unknown routes or routes known to be "dangerous" please please please ride the routes yourselves in groups and individually as much as possible leading up to the rally to get a feel for it. Inform riders of any dangers or tricky spots BEFORE the ride. The group as a whole knowing and sticking to your routes is super crucial as well, I've been on plenty of rides where groups get separated and have no clue where to go and your left trying to get a hold of somebody in the chase that is 20 mi. back, or you make your own route which can cause problems if you are unfamiliar with a city.
Learn signals for group riding. go over signals with the group as a whole before the ride.
Block Lights. if you can, before the ride ask some of the faster bikes to help block traffic lights when they change, so that everyone can get through and keep the pack together.
Be patient. The ride leader should take long stops at signs and lights to allow the back of the pack to catch up.slower.
Multiple people from the hosting club should know the ride. If the "leader" breaks down there should be a backup leader.
Use the Glympse app it is sick and eliminates someone lost from not being able to find the pack.
I love the hard copy route directions in the rally pack or at minimum the key addresses for stopping loctions.
Make sure everyone is safe and respects any rules or regulation where they intend to lay their head.
RESPECT PEOPLE'S HOUSES, HUTS, OR BRIDGE SPOTS RENTED OR OWNED
Just put yourself in their shoes and think. Would you want a rowdy bunch destroying or causing fees to you? NO! so try to get everyone to act respectfully.
Ah yes the thing I hold closest to my heart, closer even than mopeds, food. food can be a daunting task at a rally. You have anywhere from 20-200 beer and soda pop fueled people you have to feed at least once or twice over a weekend. If your club doesn't personally want to cook or order 1000 lil Caesar's plan your rides around food stops and hold the raffle at a spot where you can get food.
Reach out to a few local spots or food trucks. So are down to work with you and give some kind of discount if you plan on having a large amount of business for them.
At almost all rallies there is a pre-registration to gauge attendance at the rally. Usually registration is setup through a google doc to keep track of registered people. I'm not savvy on it but I'm betting it's not too hard to setup. Usually registration fees are the cost of a rally pack, so if you register you receive the rally pack. Rally packs generally include a rally shirt, moped stuff, and 1 raffle ticket.
Koosies are easy and cheap. Bonus points for having more than a brown paper lunch bag for the pack.
Just pray the bike starts.
I really love the idea of the bike raffle being more than just pulling one ticket. Pull a few a make the dual it out doing something epic. Keep in mind it may be good to have a consolation price for the loser.
Have a few prizes that have nothing to do with luck or deep pockets for raffle tickets.
Best bike, 1st breakdown, rat bike, farthest distance traveled, secret prize for the club mom or dad