Amidst the pandemic, events have been canceled, rescheduled and canceled again—2022 brings hope of more events and gathering with the ones we love. We are already seeing a rise in in-person events and are excited to see more to come! 2020 and 2021 have changed the way we think about the way we gather and have even changed our priorities. Continue reading for what we think will be some of the biggest event trends of 2022.
Interactive entertainment is a huge trend for 2022 weddings—many weddings have a DJ or even a band to keep guests’ energy up, but couples getting married in 2022 have taken things a step further by adding more features for their guests to enjoy, including:
- Live paintings: in addition to having a photographer and videographer, many couples are choosing to have an artist paint specific moments of their day, creating a special lasting piece from their big day.
- Segmented entertainment: many couples have reduced their guest lists due to safety concerns and, instead of spending thousands of dollars on food and beverages, have decided to spend that money on multiple kinds of entertainment for their special day. Some couples have had different music for each part of their event: a cello for the ceremony, a string quartet for cocktail hour, a band for dinner and a DJ for the dancing portion of the evening—this helps curate the mood and the energy for each part of the day.
Bringing the indoors out. Similar to many events the past year, we see outdoor events staying on-trend. What started as a necessity has become something a lot of us really enjoy! And this doesn’t just mean backyard family reunions. Beautifully lit patios at La Verona and Oliva on the Hill, the courtyard overlooking beautiful rolling hills at the Studio Inn—all of these venues can offer either elegance or a fun, light-hearted feel for your event.
Celebrating everything—even the small moments. After not being able to gather together for so long, many of us are celebrating everything! Every moment we can spend with our loved ones is important, and people are finding creative ways to do that: making baby showers larger affairs, celebrating all birthdays—not just milestones—and more are all coming with us into 2022, and we couldn’t be more excited!
Cocktail hours during the workweek are going to be a big trend in the coming year. Hosting a meet-and-greet style cocktail hour after work for your employees to enjoy is a great way to ease people back into the office—or, if your office has gone entirely remote, a way for your employees to meet those who have been onboarded since the beginning of the pandemic.
A cocktail hour is also an easier, more casual event to plan than, say, a Christmas party. A 2-hour come-and-go event where your teams can catch up with one another, meet their teammates in person and mingle with one another helps re-establish the strong bonds and friendships we create at work. Offer an open-air environment for those less comfortable at an indoor event with cocktail hour at the World’s Fair Pavilion; allow people to mingle indoors and outdoors at La Verona; or host a conveniently located event at the Forest Park Visitor Center.
More tech-driven experiences. In 2020 and 2021, we have all learned how to adapt to virtual events—speaking engagements, happy hours with friends, work Christmas parties and more. Do they have the same effect? Not quite. But over the past (almost) two years, we’ve learned to adapt and make events like this more engaging and enjoyable for those around us. A big piece of this? Hybrid events.
A hybrid event is a perfect way for you, your team and your donors to support your cause. They allow those that are comfortable to gather together and return to a little bit of normalcy, while still allowing those that are more cautious to tune in from home. The beauty of a hybrid event is the level of interaction they allow:
- Mobile bidding on cell phones allows everyone at home to participate in auctions in real-time. This can increase competition and make those at home feel more included in the event as a whole.
- Event recordings allow those who are unable to participate in the event day-of to enjoy presentations and discussions led by key speakers after the fact.
- Instant engagement through push notifications, texts and more allows you to capture every opportunity to gather donations in real-time. You can also poll and chat with your guests through the night to make sure things are running as they should.