tl;dr: Keep yourself free of obligations on the actual days of the event.
Luckily I didn’t know beforehand how much work it would be – or I wouldn’t have accepted. There wasn’t one big subject that took up so much time – just the number of details that added up.
I simply couldn’t have done it without workflowy for my to do list.
Some of my colleagues kindly signed up as helpers for the afternoon before and the two days of the event; this greatly contributed to how well it all worked out – a big thank you to all of them!
It also allowed me to keep myself free of obligations for the time of the event – I’d strongly advice for this, as it allows you to react to unexpected situations, like finding a way to cover one of the big windows of the reading room 8)
Botanical Garden of the University
We are very lucky that our relations with the Botanical Garden of the Basel University are so good; not only was it the perfect place for recharging and networking but we were also allowed to use a lot of their material inside the library.
Another advantage was that apart from occupying the reading room we didn’t invade a lot of the students’ space.
With the help of Marcel Stohler we booked the sound equipment for the reading room from Hans Guldenmann AG. Worked perfectly well.
The food and the soft drinks both inside UB and in the Botanical Garden were provided by Catering Services Migros Basel. They were super flexible (actual number of guests had to be set 10 days before the event) and very friendly and helpful during the two days. They have teams in different places in Switzerland and I couldn’t recommend them more.
For the menu I went with as much variety as the budget allowed – especially the grill on Friday evening was very well received :-)
Coffee, beer and wine
Instead of paying SV Service CHF 2.80 per cup of coffee we rented some machines from caffè eccetera, costing -.70 per pad of coffee or espresso, without extra costs for the machines. Unopened boxes (100 pads) could be returned without charges.
Both Ueli Bier and Buess Vins not only replied favourably to my question about sponsoring, but also let us return unopened bottles and barrels – which made deciding on an amount that much easier. A big thank you to them, too.
The results of GLAMhack2016 certainly were worth the effort. It was thrilling to see so many people working and talking together for two whole days! I really hope the prototypes will all find enough funding to become real.