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Topic: Pitching according to the weather
Message: Posted by: Phil Ainsworth (Aug 27, 2019 05:52AM)
Hi Frosty (and anyone else out there!)

Iím experimenting with different set ups of my pitch table and gazebo set-up and am undecided what the best is yet!

Depending on sun, shade, wind and rain Iíll have (broadly-speaking) 3 different set-ups:

1) Pitch table at the back of the tent, with my back against the rear wall banner. This is my option for sudden downpours (Iíll quickly pull the table back if rain starts) or on drizzly days. Iíll also do this on really sunny days, if the sun is behind or to the side of me, to provide shade. The downside of this though is itís much harder to get the first people to stop AND the crowds grow slower. Also, depending on how long your pitch is, the body heat of the crowd under the gazebo can create its own problems.

2) Halfway- house: pitch table almost at the front, just enough room for the front row to be inside the gazebo, but anyone behind them will be outside. This works well if there are cross winds, and Iíve also found this helps grow a crowd ONCE people have stopped because to people walking past, itís hard to see whatís going on so it makes them curious.

3) Pitch table pushed forward so itís actually outside the front of the gazebo. This makes it easier to stop people as you are right up against the walkway, and you can also stand on a box to elevate yourself. More room for people to stand at the sides although crowds can grow slower because the curiosity aspect is reduced. However, youíre more Ďon displayí to those walking past so it can work just as well. The downside of this is if itís windy, too hot, too cold, too wet or the weather turns quickly... youíre SOOL.

One solution that Iím planning is to build a collapsible base for my table thatís on big castor wheels, creating a low shelf for stock and supplies underneath (they normally sit on a tarpaulin, on the ground. That way I can quickly adjust my set up to all situations.

Does anyone else have any suggestions that can also help? I have also considered solar powered fans / mist spraying machines inside the tent.

Anything else to share, anyone?
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Aug 28, 2019 05:01PM)
Hey Phil, that's a great topic! I'd like to hear other ideas too.. but I do have a few ideas of my own to share that I'm currently using which might be of help to you or others dealing with sun, rain and wind, which is to my belief the 3 evils of outdoor pitching.. (Not whole lot you can do with the cold other than work indoors or set up beneath sunlight LOL!)

I'm a little busy right now but I'll get back in a bit with what I've been using for years that has worked great for me..

I might even post some pics.. but I'm open for new ideas!
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Aug 29, 2019 10:21PM)
Ok, here goes a few of my thoughts and experiences and hope it helps some..

When I first started pitching back in the mid 1990's I used pole tents kinda like what Don Driver used on his pitch video.. They had to be built using lose poles that were laid down on the floor then connected with elbows. Then the tarp was attached using bungee cords then the legs were added and raised.. it was too much work!

Later EZ up collapsing tents became more popular so I went that route and never looked back!

I've tried just a few setups but the one I prefer right now is your #2 Halway house... though I might change it once I build my table riser and add a box to stand on.. (I have the wood but I could never find time to get it built.. LOL!)

I believe there is no right or wrong way, it's what works for you and you feel most comfortable with..

I've seen pitchmen work the same product and one is up front while the other stand way back inside the tent. They both do well but I feel the one deep inside has to bally his tip a little harder to get them in.. but once you button hole your joint its easier to build your tip from there..

Having them inside under the tent gives them shade so its easier for them to stay till the turn and if you use a tent that has no middle frame truss, you can also stand on a box.

I prefer right now to hang my banner from the middle of the tent and have my table up front.. cuz it's easier to build your tip as it appears more inviting and your flash is more visible..
The problem with that is sometimes your tip has to stand under the sun which can be brutal for them on hot summer days.. just this past 2 weekends it's been about 104 degrees Fahrenheit.. GEESH!
What I do to remedy this is I use what is called a half umbrella to give them shade... ever since adding this Its been easier to hold on to my tip till the whole pitch.. plus it seem many will automatically stand below it just to shield themselves from the sun making it super easy to start my tip...

I'll post a pic or two below..

Tomorrow I'll add my thoughts and tips on rain and wind and more..
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Aug 29, 2019 10:30PM)
Here's a pic after closing down for the night... you can see the half umbrella standing in front of the joint though it's not opened..
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Aug 29, 2019 10:41PM)
Here's another pic when my tent got hammered and destroyed by the rain in Houston Texas.. but thanks to my half umbrella I was able to still work the show..
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Aug 29, 2019 10:44PM)
And here is the same show in Houston Texas just using my half umbrella as a top..

Like the say, "The Show Must Go On!" LOL!
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Sep 3, 2019 10:05PM)
Sorry for not posting sooner as I had said.. but I was working a festival this festival this weekend and then took out my kiddos to Six Flags on Labor Day... but here goes a bit more...

To protect my joint and merchandise from the rain.. I use what is called a waterproof fitted table cover which fits over my table and table banner and merchandise protecting it from getting wet.. I also move my joint back to the center of my tent and then drop down the tent for more protection from the rain and wind...

Here is a pic of a day I got washed out at a Salsa Festival!

In this pic I just used a painter's drop cloth made of clear plastic purchased at Walmart for about a buck which fit perfect on my 8' table...
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Sep 3, 2019 10:35PM)
On this last picture I just posted, half the vendors to my opposite side flew up in the air from a strong gust of wind (and yes they all had weighs and stakes).. I was one of the few lucky ones who survived it and just got washed out.. but it was like a river flowing by my joint..

It wasn't all bad that day though.. cuz I met a very sharp magician by the name of David Wonders.. I believe he works many festivals performing magic in Texas and Louisiana. Since no one showed up for the festival due to the rain, We just kicked it under the large top where he was supposed to perform and just talked magic and enjoyed a few jackpots..

I didn't make much on that event but had already made my nut the night before.. Fun memories though.. LOL!
Message: Posted by: Frosty (Sep 3, 2019 10:57PM)
I'll post a pic of the waterproof fitted table cover I now use tomorrow once I get a chance..