Dwayne Hendrickson
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I hope everyone had a good time. We had a few items that we had to deal with being at the new location.

1 Tables - The hotel policy was that only hotel staff could move tables. I didn't have a written plan in place for the arrangements of the smaller tables so I made a decision to go with what we had. One table was right in front of the doors and caused a major squeeze for folks coming in.

THE FIX - We will have a written diagram in place for the hotel staff and it will be in their hands ahead of time. One idea is to have the smaller tables on one half of the room, lining the walls (with room for the seller between the table and the wall. We are also thinking about having a ring of small tables in the middle of the room with the sellers inside that ring.

Also, do you feel we should have three levels of tables, small, medium and large? Small would be half of a small table (or the 2012 space that a small got today, 3x3). Medium would be a whole 6x3 table (or double a 2012 small) and a large would be the current large round.

I was at a small table and I felt squeezed onto it with no place to stand where I wasn't in someone else's way.

2 Chairs - Again, we couldn't move the chairs but the hotel did get them moved very quickly. I know some folks moved chairs before I could make an announcement but I consider that no harm, no foul. I will get the information out better next year.

3 Time allowed - In the past we have expanded the setup time so that it is 90 minutes setup and 60 minutes for selling. This was so that we had extra time to arrange the room. With the hotel staff handling that do you think we could go back down to 60 minutes setup time? Do you think we could possibly sustain 90 minutes of selling/buying time? Comments & discussion are more than welcome.

4 Traffic flow - Lining up outside and getting around inside, do you think it was handled well or what ideas do you think we should ponder? Traffic flow is impacted by table setup so these two ideas kind of go together.

Also, I want to thank all the helpers that jumped in to assist, the sellers for bringing great stuff and the buyers who generously gave a donation for the shopping bags (they gave a total of $52 for the Spiel Foundation! Way to go guys/gals!)

So, with those items on the table, please feel free to discuss those or bring up any others.

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Jeff Miller
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First off: Thanks for all your hard work putting this together! As a first timer to the con, it was one of my top highlights of the whole weekend.

As for a couple of your bullet-points:

Quote:
1 Tables

With about 20-25 games of various sizes, a small table was about perfect, with almost no excess space but not overly cramped either. I could definitely see the benefit a Medium Table for those in the 40-ish item range...

Quote:
3 Time Allowed

As a seller, I liked the time limit as it was... I was able to sell all my items in the 60 minutes with the last two going in literally the last 60 seconds. I think there's a good chance if the time were extended to 90 minutes, I would have still sold the last two games at the last second. The time constraint seemed to motivate the buyers to buy quick and the sellers to discount quicker. So more time would have just drawn it out, IMO.

I arrived 45ish minutes before the start and it took me about 15-20 minutes to setup and fine-tune (again, 20-25 games). The rest of the time, it was just nice to walk around, see what other people had, and do a few early transactions with other sellers. If I sold next year, I'd probably show up 30 minutes before the start... but that's just me with my little table.

Quote:
4 Traffic flow

I, like you, felt like I had no good place to stand during the event. Standing next to the table seemed only to block the view of what little space I had; where stepping back put me right in the flow of traffic and seemed to create confusion with buyers as to who they needed to pay.

I like the idea of creating an island or even a few smaller ones which sellers could stand behind their table and solve both the problem of traffic flow and also help buyers understand exactly who they're buying from...


Overall, I thought it was awesome and would happily participate again even if nothing changed... Thanks again!
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David Short
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mildthrill wrote:
Quote:
3 Time Allowed

As a seller, I liked the time limit as it was... I was able to sell all my items in the 60 minutes with the last two going in literally the last 60 seconds. I think there's a good chance if the time were extended to 90 minutes, I would have still sold the last two games at the last second. The time constraint seemed to motivate the buyers to buy quick and the sellers to discount quicker. So more time would have just drawn it out, IMO.

This. Definitely don't extend the Time Allowed. 60 minutes is perfect.
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Scott A. Reed
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1 Tables : I had no problem with the table set-up, but I was on a large round table on the right-hand side in the sea of large tables. I was in the middle of a "stream", so while there was a fair bit of congestion around me, I didn't feel over-crowded.

2 Chairs : No real issues for me on this one, no chairs near my table.

3 Time allowed : I think that 60 minutes is still a fine amount of time for selling. I probably sold 80% of the stuff I was going to sell in the first 20 minutes, and then had trickling sales as I encountered more hagglers and bargain-hunters. I think another 30 miutes would just be more time of tepid sales and marginal interest until the time-pressure calls for making deals or packing up. As always, my flea market goal is to try to go home with as little stuff as possible with less concern for adhering closely to margins.

I had missed that there was 90 minutes for set-up, so I didn't arrive until 9:00. I think that nearly all of the setup was done by 9:30, including for sellers who didn't come in the door until 9:15. From the organization perspective, I'm not sure if the additional 30 minutes on the front-end is necessary.

4 Traffic flow : Similar to my answer on tables.
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Digren K
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I posted this in another thread. Let me put it here, too so all your feedback is in one place.

---

Regarding the flea market, that was a blast! I hadn't woken early enough last year to attend, so this year was my first time AND as a vendor. It was a bunch of fun to feel the excitement of commerce in the air! (My friend and I were the loud booth with the barking and showmanship, him moreso than me, and we got several all-positive comments.) That said...

...it needs to be both longer and in a larger space. It was difficult to stand in front of my own booth and conduct business because of how tight the pathways were. At one point a game was unfortunately knocked over as it was sold, and it spilled, and we weren't able to find and locate all of the cards. (We found the last three after the flea market was over, and my friend took them to get to the buyer. If you are the buyer and didn't get them, and also didn't find his card in the box, let me know and I can put you in touch with him.) I suggest the Filmmakers room for the flea market next year, stale fries smell and all, so every seller can have half (or a third, or all) of a large round table and there will be a lot more space to move about. Also, I whole-heartedly second increasing the time for the flea market. How about an hour and a half? If you make it too long the crowd will die out, the sellers will get tired and want to go play games, and it will slingshot back to an hour. I think pushing it up by half an hour wouldn't hurt anyone that much.
 
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Sam Phillips Beckerman
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I would prefer 90 minutes
Rectangular tables arranged with space for dealers in center or by walls makes more sense. I also felt like I was in the way where ever I was.

I'm afraid my custom items were too small for this venue and not expensive enough for a vendor booth. Guess I'll try for more time spent on virtual flea market, which was less work for more sales. For me, anyway.
 
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Sean Tompkins
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We were occupying a small table, but picked one along a wall. It seemed much better than being in the center. For the tables in the center, maybe they could be arranged in a "donut" shape with a "facing out" section and a "sellers" side.

60 minute setup time would be fine. I still prefer 60 minutes of selling.
 
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Mike Cooper
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Digren wrote:
I suggest the Filmmakers room for the flea market next year, stale fries smell and all, so every seller can have half (or a third, or all) of a large round table and there will be a lot more space to move about.


I'm gonna have to say no on this one simply because of the logistics of people moving all those games downstairs. Innovation was a little crowded, but I think with some re-arranging of tables, it'll smooth out.

I was worried about getting into the room on time, even with the 90-minute setup. I shouldn't have worried. I had everything on the table in 20 minutes. I vote for 60 minutes setup, 60 minutes selling time. I gave away about 15-20 games as the clock wound down and still went home with 2 big boxes and a plastic bin full.
 
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Rick Pasquale
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First: kudos for the sale. I did pick up a half dozen games.

Second: from a buyer's perspective, it was way too congested. Most of the tables had people packed around them and barely moving. You were often only able to view what games were on the table from one point, struggling to see what was on the "other side" of the table. I spent the full hour in the room and am sure I missed available games that I would have bought.

Possible solutions could be:
a) using a larger room,
b) increasing the time to 90 minutes,

OR what I believe is the best solution:
c) having two 60 minute flea market sessions, with half the sellers assigned to a sale on one day and the other half of the sellers assigned to the other day's flea market. This idea would also benefit sellers.
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Scott A. Reed
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LittlePegasus wrote:
OR what I believe is the best solution:
c) having two 60 minute flea market sessions, with half the sellers assigned to a sale on one day and the other half of the sellers assigned to the other day's flea market. This idea would also benefit sellers.


I disagree -- as a seller, I would much rather be in the first session than the second session, as being in the second session means you're coming in second trying to make sales to people who will have already been through one flea market and have picked up bargains and spent their available cash.
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Digren K
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Thosw wrote:
Digren wrote:
I suggest the Filmmakers room for the flea market next year, stale fries smell and all, so every seller can have half (or a third, or all) of a large round table and there will be a lot more space to move about.


I'm gonna have to say no on this one simply because of the logistics of people moving all those games downstairs. Innovation was a little crowded, but I think with some re-arranging of tables, it'll smooth out.


I doubt that applies to more than two or three of the largest vendors. Everyone else brought their games down from a room via elevator - or could have used an elevator to take them from their car down one floor without that much hassle.
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Rick Pasquale
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skelebone wrote:
LittlePegasus wrote:
OR what I believe is the best solution:
c) having two 60 minute flea market sessions, with half the sellers assigned to a sale on one day and the other half of the sellers assigned to the other day's flea market. This idea would also benefit sellers.


I disagree -- as a seller, I would much rather be in the first session than the second session, as being in the second session means you're coming in second trying to make sales to people who will have already been through one flea market and have picked up bargains and spent their available cash.


If that's the case, then it would provide positive encouragement for sellers to register early. Those registering late would get the 2nd date.
 
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Jeff W
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I wondered why the Flea Market wasn't in the Filmmaker's room. I think that room is much bigger.
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Martin
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I know Saturday is the highest attendance day, but if the flea market were on Thursday or Friday I would have bought a couple of games to try at the Con.

By the time Saturday came around I didn't have time for anything extra and didn't want to buy something just to carry it home.
 
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Dwayne Hendrickson
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junesen wrote:
I wondered why the Flea Market wasn't in the Filmmaker's room. I think that room is much bigger.


I cant speak to that decision, but I can see where it would have been more difficult to get in/out.

Also, concerning the 2-day flea:
I doubt that I would be up to running two events. I am a volunteer and it takes more than the 3.5 hours I put in on Sat. I dont think I want to add another 3 hours onto that. I also think the 1st flea would have an adavantage since they have first dibs at buyer's cash. If I see a grail game in 1st flea I will nab it even if it does show up in second flea.

We will ponder a 2 day flea, though. All ideas will be considered.
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Digren K
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okiedokie wrote:
junesen wrote:
I wondered why the Flea Market wasn't in the Filmmaker's room. I think that room is much bigger.


I cant speak to that decision, but I can see where it would have been more difficult to get in/out.


One thing to add to this:

In the back of filmmakers, behind the black curtain, there is a roll-up door. It might be access from the garage, and might make this point moot if we were allowed to use it for a brief hour prior to and just after the flea market.

We played Cash 'n Guns Live in the back of Filmmakers late Saturday night so as to annoy as few people as possible, and the door was visible back behind the curtains.
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Mischa D. Krilov
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KUDOS TO DWAYNE FOR RUNNING THE FLEA!


I think 60 minutes is a fine duration for the Flea, and two sessions wouldn't be fun or profitable or productive.

I vote for assigned tables. Since my Flea Registration had a number on it (S9) I presumed that was the case. Should be straight forward to do if you have a floorplan in place already.

Speaking of Flea Registration: Please tweak the colors so it looks better when printed black-and-white.

Instead of just small/large, you could allow the medium people register for two adjacent small tables. This might be annoying to manage.

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Scott A. Reed
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rossum wrote:
KUDOS TO DWAYNE FOR RUNNING THE FLEA!


Yes, let me rectify my rudeness -- Thank you Dwayne for again running a smooth ship on the flea and facilitating a great event!

rossum wrote:
I vote for assigned tables. Since my Flea Registration had a number on it (S9) I presumed that was the case. Should be straight forward to do if you have a floorplan in place already.

I also thought that the L4 on my badge was a table assignment, but that apparently just meant that I was the 4th registrant of a large table. It all worked out well, I thought that my spot was a good spot.
 
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Mischa D. Krilov
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Maybe next year I'll write down what I'm selling so I don't have to wrack my brains to recall what I sold...
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Dwayne Hendrickson
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Digren wrote:
okiedokie wrote:
junesen wrote:
I wondered why the Flea Market wasn't in the Filmmaker's room. I think that room is much bigger.


I cant speak to that decision, but I can see where it would have been more difficult to get in/out.


One thing to add to this:

In the back of filmmakers, behind the black curtain, there is a roll-up door. It might be access from the garage, and might make this point moot if we were allowed to use it for a brief hour prior to and just after the flea market.

We played Cash 'n Guns Live in the back of Filmmakers late Saturday night so as to annoy as few people as possible, and the door was visible back behind the curtains.


The access problem I was envisioning was getting the buyers in and out of the room. The loading dock would be handy for the larger sellers.

Sorry that I wasn't clear enough about no assigned tables. I numbered the badges so I could tell when I had enough large sellers and small sellers.

I don't foresee me doing assigned tables because everyone has a different idea of what their prime table looks like.

Hope ya'll had a great Thanksgiving!
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Mischa D. Krilov
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okiedokie wrote:
I don't foresee me doing assigned tables because everyone has a different idea of what their prime table looks like.


Easy! You do a worker-placement draft mechanic auction based on the quantity of games minus the tau of their quality, couple that with a Hold-'Em round for tiebreakers, then use a deckbuilding party wargame that involves charades and interpretive dance.

Or just randomize it.
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I will contribute my thanks to the volunteers for running this excellent event.

I vote for no on moving the event to filmmakers. My back and knees are already hurting me on thinking about the extra distance of hauling all of those games.

I was ready to keep selling at the end of this past event so I could see some use for added time to the event. I'm not convinced, however, that it would be very effective time. I think the limited time slot tends to drive consumerism to just the right level and added time might dilute that.
 
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Thanks to Dwayne again for herding all the necessary cats to put this on every year. From this vendor's perspective, everything seemed to run very smoothly.

I think the location and the length are great. However, I would agree that better planning/organization of the layout would greatly increase mobility for the shoppers. I really like the idea of lining the walls with vendor tables. Putting a clear separation between buyers and sellers would probably help a lot.
 
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Thanks for running the show. I think it went relatively well overall.

Regarding time, I would favor 90 minutes as a trial for next year. We had many, many more vendors and I believe over double the customers. I had several people buying who said they'd only seen half the room, etc. by shows closing.

Medium tables are a go. I could have made due with that space, but as such, Dale was able to spill onto my table a bit and make use of all the space.

Arrange tables in a square/rectangle instead of circle for maximum area. A show I work has many rows of such configurations, from which vendors sell from inside the rectangles. It keeps vendors from impeding traffic.

Digren wrote:
(My friend and I were the loud booth with the barking and showmanship, him moreso than me, and we got several all-positive comments


I am not trying to be provacative or rude at all, but I found it highly annoying. It was very difficult to hear buyers already and answer questions. Even without bellowing I was hoarse by the end of show. Not sure how you did it. Again, I'm really not being ugly or anything, but could we try a no shouting policy? Please.
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