Led by some of Baltimore’s best and brightest activists, artists, educators, and leaders, GHCC’s 5th Annual Neighborhood Institute: Love Where You Live is all about learning what you can do to build and strengthen vibrant urban neighborhoods.
GHCC board member and master event planner John Spurrier of The Charles Village Festival will lead this year’s Event Planning 101 workshop, where he hopes to educate participants on the most effective ways to plan and execute successful community events.
Tell us about your background in event planning.
In the late 1980s I started a DJ business while in graduate school at Loyola University. Within a couple years I decided to stop DJing in clubs and to focus on private events. Over the years I have helped plan the music, agenda and timeline for hundreds of weddings, parties, promotions and other special events.
I have served on the Charles Village Festival committee for the past 14 years where I
have focused on working with sponsors, food, craft and commercial vendors, and designing
the physical layout of the event. In addition I am a member of the Friends of Wyman Park
Dell programming committee. Among our many successes has been the creation of an
outdoor film and music series which returns for its fourth season in June.
Why did you choose to participate as a workshop leader in this year’s Neighborhood Institute?
I was first asked to lead a workshop on recruiting young adults, a topic for which I cannot take credit. Sharing my experiences with planning special events seems to be the most practical way in which I can contribute.
What are you hoping that your workshop participants will take away with them?
I hope to provide particpants with a broad view of the many aspects involved in planning and hosting a successful event, most of which happen behind the scenes. Ideally the workshop and information provided will help participants shorten the learning curve in staging community events.