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Festival Tents???

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Festival Tents???

Post by pjhamel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 4:36 pm

Now that I am actually starting up my business, I want to get a nice set up that I can take to all of the art festivals in my area. I found a nice table and a director's chair that will work perfectly, and now I just need a tent. My only problem is that I have absolutely no idea where to find a good one that is decently priced. Do you guys have any ideas?
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by len sherrard on Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:21 pm

Look for a 'tent' that meets your needs, not just the cheapest available. Most artist desire a white canvas top, so they can get the most natural color range on their palate, and subject. Keep in mind that some of your parents are over 6 feet tall, will they be banging their head on the roof supports? Next you want to consider the ease of putting one up, will it require 2 men and a boy, and weigh more than an elephant? Plus consider the space alotment most gigs allow, arround here its usually 10 x 10, so if you get a 12 x 12 that might create more problems. Some times you can find a good deal from places like costco, but most of the dealers are found on line, that way you can compare prices and shipping rates to your local. Some of the dealers are way too proud of their items, but many are rather reasonable in pricing, it just took me forever to save up. Look to see if the supplier also has weights for your structure, arround here they are reguired, minumin of 25lbs per leg, and many days the wind can still send your canape off for a fast landing in the next county. We learn to hold onto the roof with one hand, paint like mad and place a foot on your paint table to keep passerby-ers from gettin a free face full of paint, brushes or table Laughing
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Clayton on Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:39 pm

While I hate to say this... go to Walmart. Their canopies are really sturdy and not too expensive. I have tried several, and so far, the ones at Walmart are the best for the buck.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Metina on Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:52 pm

Can you believe I lost TWO tents last year. One to wind and one to rain. I am shopping again this year too.

Len, great advice!

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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Clayton on Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:52 pm

lost one last year to rain and wind the night before the last day of the festival. very frustrating
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by pjhamel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 6:24 pm

Thanks, guys. I was planning on going with a 10 x 10, I just didn't know where to look. As for weights, I learned the hard way earlier this year that even the biggest canopy tents can go flying in the wind. My church had a festival in January, and a huge gust of wind literally blew the legs out from under one of our giant tents. Luckily, I was not under it, but I was beside it, and several people nearly trampled my set up as they rushed away. Needless to say, my tent will probably end up with extra weights, because I have no desire to ever experience that again.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Tash on Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:27 pm

I haven't gotten a tent from here yet but they can actually digitally print your business name/logo on the tent for you..... it's pretty awesome.
Check it out [url] http://www.canopiesandtents.com/[/url]

Tash
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by pjhamel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:36 pm

I found a really nice, one person set-up on the Costco site for $180, and I think that I will probably end up getting it, so thanks for suggesting that I look there, Len.
Tash, I looked at that website, but they do not digitally print your business name on the tents. They screen print it or stencil it on, which you can actually do yourself and save money. I've been stenciling stuff for years, so if you would like, I can pm you a tutorial on how to stencil it yourself for less than $20.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Tash on Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:47 pm

Glad you found what you were looking for. Sounds like a good price too.
I was just looking at that site that definitely do digitally print for you, they also screen print which may be what you are referring to.

Tash
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Guest on Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:25 pm

I make the client provide shelter. The wind here is constant and insidious...

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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by pjhamel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:51 pm

Tash, I went back and looked at the site and found the part about digital printing. How on earth did I miss that section? It looks totally cool, but unfortunately, it also looks really expensive. I will probably just stick to the plan and stencil my own.

Shannon, I would love to do that, but the weather here is extremely inconsistent and the people here are extremely spoiled. If I required them to provide shelter, I probably wouldn't book any gigs.(PS, I got your book the other day, and it is awesome!!!!!)
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by len sherrard on Thu Mar 04, 2010 1:52 am

usually, the first thing on a new tent to go is the carrying case. so i just dont even bother with it. happy painting, and no tent sailing Laughing
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by squiggle on Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:50 am

I found my 10' x 10' canopy on eBay for $80 with free shipping, so you might check them out as well...

and someone had told me once about taking old bleach containers, cutting out the top (leaving the handle) and filling the bottom with ready-mix concrete. Then you can either just put the leg of the canopy through the handle, or attach it. I think I'm going to try that, and make up a couple of extras to have on hand in case wind is really bad. You could put 2 to a leg, if you had to!
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Michelle Heffner on Mon Mar 08, 2010 12:25 pm

Metina wrote:Can you believe I lost TWO tents last year. One to wind and one to rain. I am shopping again this year too.

Hi Metina!

Tell us what Brands failed you so that we don't go buu the same ones!

~Michelle
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by face painterKimberly on Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:25 pm

I like EZ UP. I have no trouble with them in rain and snow. But wind can make any one of them air born if you don't use stakes and weights or both.

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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by JBax on Mon Mar 08, 2010 4:32 pm

len sherrard wrote: Most artist desire a white canvas top, so they can get the most natural color range on their palate, and subject.
I wish I had thought of that. I have a really great red one, I only spent $70 for at BigLots. Inexpensive, but I was just starting on festivals. They only had the red, and I thought the color difference would attract more attention. It stands out in a sea of white, but casts a red glow in the sun. Good point: red tends to make things look more attractive to the human eye (hence the red light district for haggard hookers). Bad points: all the boys thought I was about to put pink on them, and I have to edit my pix to compensate. A new tent will come after I makes some other much-needed buys (or this one falls apart... whichever comes first).
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Gamezgirl on Mon Mar 08, 2010 6:02 pm

Just a quick note to everyone who uses weight on their tents. Yes, weights are necessary, but just be careful WHAT you use and know that NOTHING is ever a gaurantee. I ran a racing school for a number of years and we had the really expensive, heavy duty EZ ups ($4K each) and we lost 6 of them in wind. One time I had my mechanics tool box attached to it and it took the whole damn tool box with it over the top of the camper bus. That tool box was heavy enough that it took 2 people to lift in and out of the truck. Another time, we watched a canopy that was weighted with 4 five gallon cans of FUEL hanging on the corners take off. Anything you use CAN become a weapon, so be careful if you use for example the bleach containers with the tops cut off, those edges are sharp. When you do stake your canop down, make sure the stakes go in on an angle, imagine driving them in with the tip pointing towards the center of the tent, that way, a wind gust that pulls against one of them, is actually driving another one deeper. If they are all in straight, they just pull out in the wind. I thought my canopy was safe last year because I couldn;t pull the stakes back out by hand when I put them in, but one big gust of wind from an approaching storm pulled them straight up because I hadn't angled them.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by BATWilliamsMagic on Mon Mar 08, 2010 9:38 pm

Weight suggestion: There is ALWAYS some wind going where we live. Our plan is to use 5-gallon paint buckets, with a piece of PVC pipe inserted in the center which is slightly larger than the canopy legs. We will fill them with quick setting concrete. We should be able to slip the canopy leg into the pipe, drill a hole through the pipe and leg, then secure it with a bolt to keep updraft from lifting the canopy out of the weight. Yeah, it's gonna be a bit extra weight to carry with us, but I've been through too many days of fighting with some 1/2 weighted canopy or umbrella that wants to blow away. I plan to have at least 2 corners weighted, possibly 4 depending on how much wind there is. This is all in the planning stage, so I hope it works out, and won't pose too much danger of becoming weapons.

Another suggestion -- use some cast iron weights like those used for weight lifting.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Perry Noia on Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:33 pm

I have an EZup that I got from Walmart (yeah I hate shopping there too) but it was only about $135 and it lasted through all of last year, so I think it was a good buy. It flipped over in the wind on me once (thankfully it didn't hit anyone) and since then I've tied it down to stuff that's not going anywhere. At the Farmer's Market where I set up, there is a metal bar cemented into the ground all along the wall where the tents are set up, so I tie down to that at least on the one side and it has kept it in place.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by len sherrard on Tue Mar 09, 2010 2:40 am

I use four 50lb weights that were salvaged from a truck scale that was being torn down, at first i thought this was overkill, but the wind around here can make life interesting. I found that if I fasten a cord from the weight to a cross bar in the roof, then the whole canape is stablized. A very popular weight system is a 3inch round pvc pipe, about 4ft long, filled with concret or sand, then capped with a eyebolt, or hookbolt, in the top cap. Then its hung from an overhead crossbar, and with a short bungee cord looped to the leg to hold it snug out of customers way. I've even seen them with colorfull slip covers on the pvc pipe, to draw more attention to your booth. I bought my canape from hayneedle.com


Last edited by len sherrard on Wed Mar 10, 2010 12:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Painted Dragon on Tue Mar 09, 2010 8:29 am

are you sure about that website link? I followed it to an online addiction site. Smile
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RE: Canopy weights

Post by BATWilliamsMagic on Tue Mar 09, 2010 10:48 am

len sherrard wrote:I use four 50lb weights that were salvaged from a truck scale that was being torn down, at first i thought this was overkill, but the wind around here can make life interesting. I found that if I fasten a cord from the weight to a cross bar in the roof, then the whole canape is stablized. A very popular weight system is a 3inch round pvc pipe, about 4ft long, filled with concret or sand, then capped with a eyebolt, or hookbolt, in the top cap. Then its hung from an overhead crossbar, and with a short bungee cord looped to the leg to hold it snug out of customers way. I've even seen them with colorfull slip covers on the pvc pipe, to draw more attention to your booth. I bought my canape from haywire.com

Thanks for the explanation of the PVC pipe! I think this might be easier to tote along than my bucket idea. But does it hold up under strong gusts of wind? I would just put the eye bolt into the concrete before it dries completely, and paint the pipe maybe in a rainbow pattern -- similar to the old fashioned barber shop poles in red/white.
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Wildcatfin on Tue Mar 09, 2010 10:20 pm

OK: when I started I got an EZ-up style tent as we had the industrial ones at work and they were FAB, used for years.

But I went to DIY shops and camping stores for my 1st FOUR. All broke or ben within 2 uses - often breaking after being carefully put up to test they worked, so when i arrived at my gig they were no use and would not go UP again. Disaster.

i did some reserach and ended up spending double the amount on a pro-quality pop up gazebo from a company on Ebay. It has been fab - did me 2 yrs of work before I left the UK, and my family in the Uk still use it - e'g' it was up for 3 mnths last summer when we visited to shade the baby. It is SO worth paying more. Ok its heavier but is also stronger & less likely to blow away.

re the graphics DO NOT print the tent - yu will get more use out of it if you have the graphics on separate banners or whatever.
And ONLY get white - I have had to work under coloured tents - not only is it hard to tell your colours, judging your blends is impossible and all photos are useless as even photoshop can't get the colours back to true.

Oh and make sure to get extra heavy duty tie-downs etc to keep it safe. Those weights that fill with sand or water and screw round the legs are good too.

And get this - not all tents are WATERPROOF! Check!

cat x
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by melisadill on Wed Mar 10, 2010 2:02 am

One other note is you may not want to stencil directly on the tent and get a sign instead. I read somewhere that some places may not want you to advertise they want you there representing them.
My 4 cents, 2 from someone else and my 2 to pass along. Very Happy
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Re: Festival Tents???

Post by Lynnie on Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:22 am

I've had my EZ-up (a non-industrial one) that I bought at a wholesale store for $180- it came with awning, sidewalls, sign, wheeled case- for 3 years.
It's survived winds, rains, hail, dust devils and drunks.

I love it.

I upgraded the stakes it came with to ones a friend of mine made out of rebar so they dig deeper.
When I can't use stakes I have two 50 lb sandbags that I put on the sides, in the middle. I then take rope and tie each of the corners to the bags. When I have the sides open, I do this along the back and use the weights that are made for the tents (they have cut outs in them so they slide snugly down the legs and are stackable...found at sporting goods stores) on the front legs.

Also, commercial water-proofer made for camping tents. I buy a can and spray my top down with that every year and haven't had a problem with leaks yet. Smile
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Re: Festival Tents???

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