Catersource is part of the Informa Connect Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

What Your Clients Need to Know Before Planning a Summer Event

The heat of summer—especially long days and hours of sun—can have a real impact on your clients’ events. Adjustments need to be made to ensure the comfort of guests, the safety of food, and the health of your staff and crew. Clients need to be made aware before finalizing a summer event date that these considerations exist and of the ways that you plan to address them. As an events professional, it’s critical that you understand what your clients need to know before planning a summer event.

Photo courtesy Majesta Patterson -

Understand expected conditions

When considering dates for a summer event, present an accurate picture of the weather they can expect. Show historical weather for the sites they are considering. Include sunrise and sunset times, average humidity, average precipitation, and of course, temperatures.

Emphasize hydration

A key to maintaining guest comfort and safety in extreme heat is keeping everyone hydrated. Include water stations throughout your event. Dress them up by providing bottled still and carbonated water infused with fresh fruit. Customize individual bottles of water with personalized labels.

Provide sufficient shade

Keeping guests out of direct sunlight is one of your most important considerations. Be prepared to explain tent options, including the details clients must understand about tent set up, breakdown, obtaining permits, and the impact on the grass where the structure might sit for several days.

Photo courtesy Mike B Photography -

If a tent is not possible for budget or logistical reasons, research alternative shade options. Market umbrellas can be scattered throughout a party and will offer small shade patches to guests who can’t handle the heat. Provide parasols and position main activities under trees or overhangs whenever possible.

Photo courtesy Ashley Maxwell -

Make sure food is heat safe

One of the most concerning negative effects of heat on summer events is its potential impact on food safety. The chef should be consulted to determine what kind of equipment is needed, what foods are reasonable to include in the menu based on the conditions that are expected, and how everything will be displayed. At a wedding, for example, a cake should be displayed for the minimal possible time, then stored in refrigeration or served immediately. Clients should strongly consider fondant over buttercream for the best appearance and presentation.

Plan to control pests

Mosquitoes and other biting insects can be a blight of hot-weather events. Provide baskets of DEET-based insect repellant throughout your event and encourage guests to use it throughout the event. Burn pest-repelling candles and torches around guest tables. Let guests know in advance if you are expecting pests so they can dress appropriately.
Planning a summer event requires calculated risk and significant preparation, so ensure that your clients know what to expect before choosing a summer date. Keep safety and comfort at the forefront of all plans, and your clients should enjoy an excellent event.

Want more event planning information? Stay tuned for more information on Catersource 2019. Click here for the latest information.

Heather Jones

Catering Sales Director

Heather Jones is the Catering Sales Director for Wente Vineyards, a family-owned property that is home to a winery and vineyards, a golf course, restaurant, and a handful of unique facilities for hosting weddings and special events.