Thank you for all your amazingly creative and enthusiastic responses!
Reading through all the replies on this thread and those I’ve received through private message, I think we have to ask ourselves what kind of an event we want to be organising.
My initial idea was to organise a sort of self contained weekend filled to the brim with various activities and workshops, which felt more like a mini festival. It would seem that some like this idea, whilst some would favour something similar to the Parti 10 weekend and some seem to favour a Bootcamp style weekend with experiences for Welsh in the wild.
Although we know from experience that we will never be able to please everyone, I do think we need to work as hard as we can to make sure we get the balance just right. I want people to enjoy themselves, to have fun, to feel that they’re getting value for money and that what’s on offer has enough variety.
Caernarfon would lend itself beautifully to a more Bootcamp-ish experience with a few structured activities allowing free time for Welsh in the wild, and possibly an evening party/gig at the Galeri. Only a handful of activities would mean less spent on hiring various venues. Shopping, eating and drinking in Welsh in and around Caernarfon would fill in time between activities and give SSiWers the opportunity to socialise in their own time. It also has a range of different types of accommodation.
The Nant would lend itself better to a festival type experience, giving us the opportunity to put on many different activities at once and keeping venue costs down. It has a cafe, a range of different types of accommodation and has a large function room for gigs and parties.
For those with us last weekend, I guess the questions we have to ask are, did you think that the balance between structured activities and free time was good or would you have liked more things to be able to do and get involved in during the day?
We’ve been brainstorming a little here and have thought of various activities as you have, such as…
- talks by authors/poets
- wine/beer/cheese tasting in Welsh
- cooking demos in Welsh
- coral singing workshops
- historical talks and walks
- yoga in Welsh
- Welsh ‘pub quiz’ type games
- mini gigs
…and so on…
So do we have a weekend where we try and organise as wide a variety of different activities going on as possible, with groups of SSiWers attending each one based on preference? Or do we choose a small handful of the most popular and intersperse these with pub and cafe meet ups, walks and shopping?
Other things to consider are things like Caernarfon’s famous food festival, early in May every year. It’s epic to say the least with food and drink stalls filling the town as well as local crafts, artists, small producers, cooking demos, gigs and all sorts of colourful and interesting activities. We could coordinate a weekend party with something like this. so that the daytime activities are already there and all we organise is the party in the evening.
Anyway, that’s me over and out for now. I’ll leave you to think about these ideas and we’ll see how it goes.