In this article, I will discuss Covid-19, Disney, and the future of larger events.
Covid-19 is a super leach that attached itself to our world and is draining it of social interaction. Amusement parks, community events, and sporting events are struggling to develop a protocol for dealing with this pandemic.
I do not have specialized medical training, but as an outsider, I’m baffled by how big-box stores, in particular, keep Covid-19 at bay. Each day hundreds of people stream in and out of these stores.
Policies and Procedures
From my experience, procedures and policies are created from two sectors: business and government. Government policies and regulations could be argued to have a political agenda and sometimes self-serving. Depending on the policy, it can take weeks, months, if not years to implement, so community leaders turn to major businesses to establish guidelines.
The government officials make rash decisions based on “expert” advice. This alone amazes me, ” that every politician has communicated with the leading expert on everything before making a decision,” said in a sarcastic voice.
I have always felt that if professional sports could get past its money issues and put forth a Covid-19 protocol, it would help local venues produce a community event.
Let us turn to the restaurant industry, for example. Only days after restaurant in-store dining shuts down, restaurants don’t miss a beat and turn to TV, radio, and social media showing how the restaurant has stepped up their cleaning, employees wearing masks, and social distancing much more. If I’m a small local restaurant owner, I now see how it is done and adopt these policies to keep my business afloat.
Who Do We Watch
The leader, hands down, is Disney, with millions of dollars in resources, amusement parks worldwide, and crowds that event producers only dream about managing. Disney is scheduled to open on July 15, 2020.
The world will be watching and duplicating Disney policies and incorporating them into our venue safety procedures. Disney knows how to deliver a message, as you can tell in this picture of Disney staff cleaning a Teacup ride. Safety is being placed on display.
Future of Large Events
This year community leaders are watching and learning as the fear of establishing a policy is a risk that many do not want to take.
It’s easier to cancel than to plan.
It’s easier to reschedule than reinvest.
It’s easier to copy than create.
With that said, large events are crippled until they have an event to model themselves after. Maybe Disney will put forth a plan and publicly execute their ideas of safety. Disney, the innovator of dreams, is making the dream of a safe public event a reality establishing themselves as a leader.
The second event producers are watching is the Kentucky State Fair, as they will be opening in August. These two events are the leaders in large public events and come next year, those who sat on the sidelines will be reviewing precisely what these events did and will adapt their policies.