an opinionated report from Trevor Connell
The events industry knows how to party and the Adelaide MEA conference social committee made sure delegates had a good time.
Welcome reception at National Wine Centre
This year’s welcome function was held at the National Wine Centre so naturally wine tasting was a key element of the event. The tastings on offer came from SA’s oldest and most famous, Penfolds, through to a number of boutique wineries and a gin bar.
The food was plentiful and easy to access. The biriyani was as filling as it was tasty, the cheese selection was delicious and of course icecream to finish.
The entertainment came in the form of funky DJ / live combo that grooved in the background – perfect for a networking function. A nice touch was the picnic blankets on the lawn.
A perfect way to kick off the conference.
My only gripe about this event was that the welcome glass of wine was offered right at the entrance, this resulted in guests banking back to the busses. Yes I know that the guests are keen to get their first drink and the venue is keen to please, but it would have worked better if the tray service was inside the venue (this is a common mistake made at so many events that I attend).
Venue – National Wine Centre
Catering – National Wine Centre plus Spring Gully, Barossa Fine Foods and Gelista Ice Cream
Showcase wines – St Hugo Wines, Jericho Wines, The Lane Vineyard and Yalumba
Gin bar – The Tipsy Gypsy
Technical production – Scene Change
Event Styling – Bizzarro and Adelaide Expo Hire
Entertainment – Entertainment Adelaide
Casual night at Adelaide Oval
Adelaide Oval has recently had a major overhaul and the venue were keen to show off the facility, so guests were treated to a combo pyro and lighting show before being ushered into the William Magarey Room, Adelaide Oval’s flagship new events space.
In the lead up to the conference delegates were encouraged to wear team colours to this event and most of them did – which made it a very colourful event.
The food reflected game day food (although much more upmarket than most sporting venues) including mini pies, mini hot dogs, pizza etc. All delicious, with local wines to accompany, but I was surprised that there were no local beers on tap. Glaringly absent was Coopers!
The DJ kept a low key ambience for most of the night – perfect for networking – and then cut loose for the final hour. Perfect timing for this type of event.
Venue and catering – Adelaide Oval
Audio Visual – powered by Central Audio Visual
Entertainment – DJ Wes under the Rock’n Trees Company, Fizz Bubble (face painting)
Display car – AOSMA
Pyro show – Howard & Sons Pyrotechnics
Gala Awards Night at Adelaide Convention Centre
Oh dear! As I described in last week’s EDM, this event was marred by presenting the event with no sense of occasion. The volume was unrelenting – the dinner music was played at rock volume. The approach seemed to be just whack the band on and crank up the volume. The musicians themselves were great but it would have been nice to be able to converse with the people at our table without having to shout at each other.
This was in stark contrast to what we learned the previous day from Steve Brown in his plenary presentation on designing an event for maximum impact. The irony did not escape ASE.
However, the food and service by the ACC lived up to the standard we had experienced all through the conference. Andrew Costello, the MC was a cracker! His patter was hard to keep up with at times but he was very entertaining. “Cosi” had obviously been briefed to get the awards done quickly and he had them all over by 10 PM, which must be a MEA record.
Venue and Catering – Adelaide Convention Centre
Dessert Chocolate Bar – Haig’s Chocolates
Band – Jazz it Up featuring Sarah Lloyde
Event show call – Haycom
LED screen – Big Screen Video
Event Styling – Labours of Love
Photography – Oneil Photographics
Each of the social events was followed by an after party for those with the strength to continue on. My days of drinking well into the night now seem to be behind me.