Creech Party in the Park wins national award

We are thrilled to announce that Party in the Park has won a national award.

Fit Award

Organiser Mina Guest, BBC presenter Ore Oduba and organiser Jo Morrison being presented award at Lord’s Cricket Ground, London.

The Creech Party in the Park (PIP) event was nominated in the Fields in Trust (FIT) awards.  FIT protect open spaces all across the country to make sure that outdoor spaces are safeguarded forever. Creech St Michael Recreation Park is one of these protected places.

The Party in the Park event was shortlisted in the “Best Have a Field Day” category  following the success of the day on 11 July which saw over a 1000 people enjoying the fun packed line-up which included drama, dance and sport displays, music, family games, reptile handling, petting zoo, donkey rides, archery and train rides.

The awards ceremony took place at Lords Cricket Ground in London on 2nd December and two members of the organising committee, Mina Guest and Jo Morrison, attended. The award was presented by BBC sports and news broadcaster Ore Oduba – who even tweeted the PIP team after the event.

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All the Fields in Trust finalists and winners.

The organisers said “We were absolutely delighted to have been nominated, and to win is a fantastic achievement.  We are so proud of our event which involves the whole community, and the organisers told us that one of the reasons we won is because we include activities for all ages. We want to thank all our supporters, volunteers and sponsors for helping us hold such a successful event – bring on Party in the Park 2016!”

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Mina manhandling Ore, and his tweet!

The next PIP event will be held on 9 July 2016 and interested parties can contact the team on info@creechpartyinthepark.com to get involved.

PIP shortlisted for an award!

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Winning ToW team modelling their FIT t-shirts and medals!

We are absolutely delighted to announce that Party in the Park has been shortlisted for an award.

We have been nominated in the Fields in Trust (FIT) awards.  FIT protect open spaces all across the country. From sports pitches to children’s playgrounds, bicycle trails to country parks, FIT make sure that all kinds of outdoor spaces are safeguarded forever. Creech Recreation Park is one of these protected places and FIT supplied us with a box of goodies for the day – including the T-shirts and medals the winning Tug of War team are modelling above!

The category we are shortlisted in is Best Have a Field Day on a Fields in Trust site.  The awards ceremony takes place at Lords Cricket Ground in London on 2nd December and Mina Guest and Jo Morrison from the organising committee will be attending the event.

We will let you know if we win!

We’d like to once again thank all our supporters, volunteers, committee members and sponsors for helping us put on such an amazing event that is truly worthy of an award.

Some of the organisers and volunteers.

Some of the organisers and volunteers.

PIP2015 – feedback

Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete our short (10 questions) survey about our event. We had 72 responses this year, up from the 50 we had last year. The survey is still open at www.surveymonkey.com if you would like to add your thoughts. We appreciate all your comments and ideas and welcome feedback both good and bad!

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Would you like PIP to happen again? Day & night, day only, night only, or not at all?

The overwhelming majority of respondents want the event to happen again and to continue with the day and night format.

All except two respondents agreed that the bar prices were very reasonable.  Everyone also agreed that the ticket price was perfect or too low.

55% thought food a good price but 32% said food was too expensive.

We’ve had 9 new volunteers come forward from the survey which is fabulous – thank you.

45% of respondents want a daytime bar – but the organisers are agreed we will keep that for the evening only.

82% of respondents would like there to be music in the daytime again.

80% would like to see community and chairty stalls, but only 52% want commercial stalls.

Positive comments

We’re very pleased that the overwhelming majority of feedback received was positive. A small selection of comments below:

  • The whole event was so fabulously organised. Wouldn’t change a thing.
  • Fantastic well run event.
  • Kids loved the day especially the inflatables and the Ruishton FC bit. Night was awesome.
  • A great day was had by all my family.
  • Had a wonderful day. Kids entertainment great. Look forward to next year.
  • Fantastic atmosphere, real community spirit.
  • It’s was a fantastic day. Loved it.
  • All the family thoroughly enjoyed it, really looking forward to next year.
  • Thank you for all your hard work it was a great day for young and old!
  • Good day, really enjoyed both day and night. Felt safe for the children. Security very good idea.
  • Lots of fun – two very tired but happy boys. Very friendly.
  • Was a great family event.
  • Just love everything, great village atmosphere.
  • Safe environment, the band and the community spirit were great.
  • Children can play safely without having to be tied to their parents. Great job well done.
  • The best village event I’ve ever attended.
  • Kids loved the donkey rides and the animals and watching tug of war.
  • The event was great, a real village and community event.
  • Egg toss and Tug of War were brilliant. Announcer good. Great food.
  • Easy-going atmosphere, top class band, very reasonably priced food and drink.
  • Great atmosphere, community spirit , friendliness, convenient and accessible.
  • Best bit for me was community spirit/atmosphere!

Negative comments

Despite the vast majority loving the event, we would like to address the few negative comments we received.

“Why take photos of all stalls except ours? We were discriminated”

Photos were taken of every stall, there was however a long delay in getting some of them online so it may have appeared we dropped some stalls out.  This of course was certainly not our intention. It was purely a case of manpower as over 900 photos were taken and due to work, family, holidays etc, they didn’t get up online as soon as we’d hoped.

“Very little vegetarian food available” “expensive food” “gluten free”

All the food was supplied by external caterers and we specifically requested that they offer a vegetarian option, which many of them did.  The prices were set by the caters and in keeping with what you would pay at any similar outdoor event. We will look at offering other restricted diets next year such as gluten free if enough people request it.

“Food slow” “Long queues for food” 

We deliberately chose non conflicting food options of burgers, fish n chips, hog roast, bakery to cater for a range of appetites and therefore spread the customers around. Unfortunately some queuing is unavoidable.

“I couldn’t hear the main band very well” “band not loud enough” “sound needs improving in the evening” “amplification for demos in the arena” “the music was far too loud for those that lived nearby”

We purposefully set the band’s stage further back this year to reduce noise to local residents.  So the sound was good directly around the stage, but quieter at the marquee/bar/residential end.

The groups putting on their displays brought their own music with them, however, we will look at providing a consistent sound set up for them all next year,

“wine expensive”  “waiting times at bar” “more alcohol as certain items ran out” “more bar choice”

The wine was £8 a bottle – even the Prosecco.  We think this is incredibly cheap and are surprised anyone thought otherwise.

Unfortunately there was a queue at times at the bar despite it being manned by at least 4 volunteers all the time. It was very hard to fit any more staff behind due to the size, however, we will look at making the bar bigger next time to alleviate the wait.

We tried to cater for a range of tastes behind the bar by stocking the most popular drinks (as determined by the last 2 years sales).  Juggling buying enough to last the night, while not being left with lots of leftovers is a tricky business! Therefore, towards the end of the night some items did run out, but the bar never ran dry, so there was always an alternative drink to be had.  We will of course look again at this next year.

“better toilets”

We had more toilets this year than any previous years, and upgraded to the luxury blocks rather than just the portable single loos. Queueing was definitely reduced this year and the lighting was much better. However, with any sort of temporary toilet for an outdoor event, you are never going to get the same comfort as an indoor loo, and with so many people using the facilities, they will inevitably be less than fresh by the end of the night! We will continue to try to improve the facilities each year – but for one night only, you might need to “rough it” slightly!

“More bins”

There were around 20-30 bins in the field, but despite this many did not see or use them. It was shocking how much rubbish was left behind. Unfortunately, no matter how many bins are on offer there will always be those that will not be bothered to use them.  Once again, we will provide more and with better signage next year.

“be careful of underage drinkers/people buying for them”

We done everything possible to discourage underage drinkers.  Tickets were only available to adults, different colour wristbands to help ID at the bar and our professional security team were patrolling and did confiscate a small amount of alcohol from minors.  Next year we would strongly encourage anyone that sees any underage drinking or anything they are not comfortable with to please let our security team know and they will be happy to deal with it. We want the event to remain a safe and happy environment for everyone.

“Make people aware that there are neighbours that either have to be up early for work or they have young children”

A leaflet was issued with all tickets asking people to be respectful to local residents when leaving, we encouraged people not to drive to keep noise down, and we put put up posters to ask people to be quite on exit.

“The people who organise this have NO consideration for residents at all. It is totally selfish. Take it away from residential areas”

In the 3 years that we have held the event, we have only ever had one person complain. It would be selfish to stop the enjoyment of 1000 residents, because 1 person objects. It is a community event so therefore is held within the community to make it accessible – if we moved it out of the area then it would not be the event for locals we want it to continue to be.

Other comments/suggestions

There were lots of other ideas and suggestions and general feedback that we would like to address:

“a small farmers market selling local produce would be nice”

We have invited all the stalls from Taunton Farmers Market and others from the local area every year – but sadly there has been no interest from them in attending.

“can we camp next year – I saw 2 campervans on site”

Camping is not something we anticipate happening in the future.  The campervans on site belonged to volunteers who offered to act as overnight security on the Friday and Saturday to safeguard equipment.

“dog show”

Dogs are not allowed at the Recreation Park and there is already a yearly dog show that happens at The Bell, so this is not something we want to add to the PIP event.

“start evening earlier” “daytime longer” “more demos” “more silly games” “buskers in central arena”

We are flattered that you want the event to be longer! However the setup takes a long time and the turnaround between day and evening takes up hours too so we need to keep a substantial gap between day/evening.

Timing is also against us when trying to fit in more demos/games. This year we really struggled to fit in everyone that wanted to put on a demo.  If we also added buskers in the outside arena, rather than the marquee, we would have even less time for everyone. We would love to have more games for everyone to get involved in, and again this is tricky to time around displays in the arena.  We will of course endeavour to work on this again next year to improve it and fit more in.

“higher ticket price” “more bands” “student bands to warm up”

Many people have told us to increase the ticket price. We really appreciate that people think we could charge more and it’s obviously something we need to look at each year as the event costs more that £4500 to put on.  However, to keep the event inclusive to all, we will always try to keep the ticket price as low as possible.

We would love to have more bands – however, professional bands cost a lot of money, so having more bands will ultimately bring an increase in either ticket price or bar prices, which we are reluctant to do.

Student bands are also a great idea, however, we then have the added difficulty of equipment.  As bands do not ordinarily like to share equipment you would need 2 or more sets of equipment which would not fit on the stage, and we wouldn’t have the time/manpower to change equipment over for different bands.

We are again open to suggestions if people can find a way around these issues.

“bring your own booze”

Party in the Park cost over £4500 to put on this year, therefore we rely heavily on our sponsors, ticket sales, and most importantly bar sales. Without the profit the bar makes the event simply would not be able to happen. This is why we ask everyone to only buy their drinks from the bar and not bring their own on to site.  We are happy to listen to suggestions about what the bar should stock and do our best to keep bar prices low while still making a profit.

“hot drinks in evening”

This is something we will look at next year.

“more activities for adults and teenagers”

We are open to suggestions!  Please let us know your ideas and we will look at providing more next time.

“more for kids to do”

There was reptile handling, petting zoo, bouncy castle, train rides, donkey rides, face painting, archery, puppet show, Punch & Judy, crockery smash, football shootout, coconut shy, football skills, zumba session, princess hair and tattoos, music to listen to, displays to watch, the park to play in, tug of war, egg toss and crafting activities for the children.

However – we would welcome any ideas anyone has for more to entertain the kids.

“Fireworks”

As the field is extremely close to the M5, fireworks are not a good idea and will not be happening at any future event.

“a stall could be offered to each CSM organisation in the village magazine”

A free stall was offered to all local groups, but few of them took up the offer.

“adult bouncy castle” “fun fair” “car boot sale” “roller disco” “it’s a knock out” “chocolate fountain” “laser quest”

All very interesting suggestions which we will look at next year.

“more incentive for volunteers”

The very nature of volunteering is that you don’t want anything in return! Our hard working volunteers were invaluable and extremely appreciated – but other than a free, very fetching yellow t-shirt – there will be very little else on offer!

 

PIP2015 – a fab day and night!

This year Party in the Park was bigger and better than ever with hundreds of people of all ages enjoying both the day and evening festivities.

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In addition to all the free games and activities, we had a wider selection of food, more stalls and a busy daytime schedule. The line-up included local musicians, puppet shows, dancing displays, Zumba session,  Tae Kwon Do, drama display and a Punch & Judy show.

The team games proved particularly popular with everyone. The local police won the ‘Egg Toss’ game, but last years “Zumba” team failed to hold on to their ‘Tug of War’ title, which was won this year by “We’ve Pulled”.

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“We’ve Pulled” – the 2015 champions of the Tug of War competition.

The evening event was really popular again with the evening kicking off with a kid’s disco with plenty of party games (kindly run by our “yellow army” of  volunteers!).

The volunteers entertaining the kids with party games at the disco.

The volunteers entertaining the kids with party games at the disco.

All the hot food suppliers stayed for the evening along with an additional Hog Roast stall and Wellington Inflatables also stayed to keep the kids entertained.

The daytime stayed sunny and dry, but we did have a shower in the evening, however, it didn’t last long and everyone was soon up dancing again before long.

Our band—Mr Cover Lover—did a great job of catering for a wide range of musical tastes and our crowd of dancers certainly enjoyed it!

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Dancers enjoying the night!

Our volunteer bar staff were busy all night, and although there were inevitably some queues they did a great job of keeping the wait as short as possible.

Our raffle was once again very successful and huge thanks to all our sponsors for making it happen. A couple of the prizes went unclaimed so these will go in the pot for next year.

The early bird volunteer clean up crew were hard at work in the rain the next morning cleaning up the site and did a fantastic job of getting the park looking neat and tidy.

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Cleanup crew hard at work in the rain on Sunday morning.

Huge thank you to everyone who supported the event – it would not be possible without everyone getting involved.

Special thanks to:

  • 3D Security
  • All the stallholders
  • All the groups that put on displays
  • All the talented musicians
  • All the volunteers
  • All the volunteer bar staff
  • County Granite
  • Creech Baptist Church
  • Creech Gardening Club
  • Creech Shop
  • David Fothergill
  • David House & Tetton Farm
  • Don & Julie Sweeting
  • Escape (Abbey Peebles)
  • Fields in Trust
  • Gillard Transport
  • Heathfield Hair and Beauty
  • Isle Valley Vets
  • Jim Pike Electrical
  • Mill Autos
  • Monkton Elm Garden Centre
  • Neil Robertson Plumbing & Heating
  • New Mill Inn
  • Peter Coles
  • Quantock Framing
  • Riverford Fruit and Veg
  • Silvers Pantry
  • Spirit Health Club
  • Universal Marquees
  • We’re Eco
  • Wessex Water

Committee &  volunteers

Some of the organisers and volunteers.

Some of the organisers and volunteers.

Special thanks to the organising committee and volunteers who have been planning the event from the start of the year, giving up their time and expertise for free to put on a fab event.

  • Clare Sampson
  • Jo Morrison
  • Adrian Birch
  • David Knight
  • Mina Guest
  • Lindsay Ireland
  • Bev Jane
  • Jane Birch
  • Corinne Birch
  • Dee Finch
  • Thomas
  • Emma Speers

And EVERYONE who helped out with all the fetching and carrying, setting up, clearing up, tidying and cleaning on the Friday/Saturday/Sunday – your help is invaluable and very much appreciated.

 

 

 

 

 

2 days to go until PIP15!

Only 2 days to go until Party in the Park 2015. There is so much to see and do this year that this post is just a reminder of what’s happening.  Please look out for posters around the field giving you info on stalls, activities and schedules for music and games.

FREE STUFF – archery, petting zoo, reptile handling, miniature cars, music in the marquee, drama performance, tae kwon do display, dancing display, zumba class, tug of war, egg toss game, pirate puppet show, Punch & Judy, police riot van, fire engine, mini health check

PAID ACTIVITIES:  coconut shy, facepainting, train rides, bouncy castle, crockery smash, guess balloons in car, tombola, glitter tattoos, princess hair.

FOOD & DRINK:  ice cream van, bakery, candlyfloss, chocolate, burgers, fish & chips, cream teas and snow cones.

CHARITY/COMMUNITY STALLS:  Gardening club – including the scarecrow competition! Community First Responders, Charnley Cards, Children’s Hospice South West, Greyhounds in Need, Stand Against Speed for Bethany, SURE, Brainwave.

COMMERCIAL STALLS:  toys, aloe vera products, health products, home products, chabby chic, kitchen gadgets, hobby kits, fruit and veg, wood products.

SCHEDULE:  there will be displays, shows and music happening throughout the day from 12.15pm until 4pm.  See the full schedule so you don’t miss out.

RAFFLE: tickets will be on sale next to the gardening stall in the day and volunteers will be walking around in the evening to sell tickets.  £1 a strip.  See List of Raffle Prizes. Raffle will be drawn at 10pm on Saturday night, and you can write your name on tickets if you will not be around.

PARKING: Please, where possible, leave your cars at home.  The car park is reserved for blue badge holders and the nearby  roads for residents only.

AFTERDARK: Gates open at 6.30pm. Kid’s disco starts at 7pm with volunteers leading the kids in party dances and games. Mr Cover Lover will start at 8pm and finish by 11.30pm.  Bar closes at 11.30pm.

ALCOHOL:  Our bar prices are cheap.  Where else could you get a bottle of Prosecco for £8 with all the entertainment for adults and children that’s on offer? Please support the bar and DO NOT bring in your own booze.  It is a condition of our licence that only alcohol we sell is permitted on the field.  So if you want the event to happen again – please use our bar. Full list of the Bar Tariff .

We hope you have a fantastic day and night at Creech Party in the Park.  We’d love to see your pictures so please post them on our Facebook page.

Make a scarecrow for Party in the Park!

scarecrowCreech Gardening Club are organising a Scarecrow competition for Party in the Park this year.

It is open to everyone and you don’t need to fill in any entry forms or pay any money to enter.  There are no age categories so we hope families will make a scarecrow together and enter it in to the competition.

The theme is Nursery Ryhymes – so please create your scarecrow with this in mind.

Please bring your scarecrow – clearly labelled with your name and contact number – to the Gardening Club stall by 12.30pm at the latest.  They will then be judged and all put on display for the rest of the day so everyone can enjoy them.  You can collect your scarecrow at 4pm.

There will be prizes for the 3 best scarecrows as judged by the Gardening Club.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing all your efforts.

If you need any further details please contact the gardening club directly on 01823 442661 or 01823 443757.

Competition – share your thoughts on bar and music

We are running another competition to find out what you want to drink and what you want to dance to.

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Please let us know what you would like the bar to stock.  Did we run out of your favourite last year?  Not have something you really wanted? Should we stock different brands this year?  For info – this is what we had on offer in 2014:

  • BEER:  Boddingtons
  • LAGER: Calsberg
  • CIDER: Thatchers, Fruit Cider, Parsons Choice
  • WINE: Pinot Grigio, Merlot (Jacobs Creek), Rosé (Jacobs Creek)
  • SPIRITS: Gin & Tonic, Vodka & Coke, Pimms & Lemonade
  • SOFT DRINKS: Evian, J20, Coke, Diet Coke, Lemonade, Diet Lemonade, Fruit Shoots,
  • SNACKS: Haribo, Mars, Snickers, KitKat, Twix, Crisps, Wotsits, Quavers

Our band Mr Cover Lover are guaranteed to get you up and dancing with their wide ranging covers list – but if you have a particular favourite let us know and we’ll pass the request on to the band.

To enter the competition, simply comment on this post below or on our Facebook competition photo. Everyone who comments will be entered into a draw and a winner selected at random after the closing date of 17 May.  The winner gets 2 adult and 2 child tickets. Good luck!

Third PIP Planning Meeting

Another planning meeting took place tonight at The Bell with Jo, David, Jane, Audrey and Simon in attendance – huge thankyou to the new faces!

The biggest priority at the moment is getting other people to commit to helping out either before, during or after the event. We urgently need your support – even if you can just spare an hour of your time it will really help us. Unfortunately if enough volunteers do not come forward the event is in real danger of being cancelled as we simply can not do everything ourselves. Please see the previous “volunteers needed” post for more details on what we need help with.

We are also short of demonstrations for the central arena in the daytime – do you know anyone with a club/society that would like to put on a short (20mins) display? If so, please get in touch.

The DJ for the kids disco is now confirmed; all electrical items such as generators and lights are booked via Brandons, and you will be pleased to know we have bigger and better toilet blocks ordered for this year.

We are aiming to start selling tickets for the Afterdark event within the next few weeks, and if previous years are any indication there will be a high demand for them so please buy early to avoid disappointment.

An idea that has been suggested is a Children’s Talent Show – we would love to have your views on this. Would it work? Would there be enough interest? Please comment on here or message us.

The date of next meeting Wednesday 6th May, 7.30pm, The Bell Inn.

Activities & stalls update

Courtney's Mobile Petting Farm

Courtney’s Mobile Petting Farm

We’ve another fantastic activity for both children and adults alike with the addition of Courtney’s Mobile Petting Farm to our daytime attractions.

Animals include miniature shetland ponies, miniature donkey, chickens, micro pig and pygmy goats and the aim of the petting area is to have a real hands on, interactive fun approach that will bring smiles to the faces of young and old, whilst helping children to develop a caring attitude towards animals and encourage their confidence and awareness.

Archery

Archery in 2013

“Have a Go” Archery will be back again this year once again organised by Mig Partridge from Creech St Michael Baptist Church.  Fun for all the family.

Wellington Bouncy Castles will be providing a big inflatable slide and play trailer for both the daytime and evening event.

A new commercial stall joining us from Torquay is Made by Rose Red selling beautifully handmade items such as cushions, bunting, coasters, bags etc.

Monkeynutz will also have a stall at the daytime event and is a Taunton based company selling handmade sock animals.

We are currently finalising the music and food for the event so will have more exciting news to share soon!

 

Competition and application form

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Enter our comp and win tickets to the Afterdark event.

We are currently running a competition on social media to win a family ticket to the Afterdark PIP event.

All you have to do is give us your ideas and suggestions about what you would like to see at this year’s Party in the Park.

You can also enter on the website by commenting on this post.  Good luck!

Pitches in the daytime are open to all  – charities, commercial, groups, informational, food, drink, games, competitions – so if you would like a stall please  complete our PIP Application Form to secure your place.

UPDATE:  Congratulations to Sue Champion who won the family ticket to the Afterdark event. We had 16 entries.