Friday, 7 October 2011

A team FEAT

That's the third FEAT event done and dusted. What an absolutely incredible night, again!

As I assimilate the evening and jump into all the post-event necessities, I have so many thank yous to wonderful people who make this event so smooth.

Without sponsors, FEAT just couldn't happen. Well, if it did your tickets would have to cost a lot more than double the R140 price. Even more wonderful is that FEAT's sponsors, Black Diamond, Capestorm, Hi-Tec and 32Gi, are as supportive of a variety of athletes and adventurers.

Go Multi and Getaway magazines really help to get word out about FEAT

Wonderful assortment of speakers representing many disciplines and experiences were the highlight and focus of the night. For me it is a treat to meet people I've heard about, read about and written about. As always, there are some I know and many I don't but when they leave FEAT and return home, relationships remain behind.

Andy, Craig, Frank, Gerard, Kim, Kobus, Marian, Ross, Simon - I cannot sufficiently express my joy at having you on the FEAT stage and for being part of this. FEAT is so much more than just a night of interesting talks around adventures. You inspire and have a wonderfully positive impact on the lives of the people you're speaking to.

After three events I have got the most amazing team of people who make things happen. Most of them have been with me from the start. Alistair Cronk is really my right-hand-man, handling the sound and music. This is a key element of FEAT so it's one of the main functions. He keeps control of everything happening on stage. Ray Chaplin spoke at the first FEAT event and has been on my team since. He came up from CT especially to be here. Ray kept the speakers reassured behind the scenes, rigging their microphones and getting them prepped. William was on the slide controls again; as with the first Jo'burg event. Although most of the slides run automatically, William keeps tabs on getting the speakers' talks started and sorting out any glitches as they arise. Max Cluer MCd the event again and his enthusiasm for FEAT is tangible. A dash jetlagged from MCing an event in the US, Max was on the ball, as always.

Fred Richardson and Tony Abbott were on 'airport duty' fetching the speakers flying in and delivering them safely to the theatre. Again, provided the flights all were on time (and they were, early in fact!) I had not a care in the world because in their capable hands I knew they'd get the speakers through to FEAT come hell, high water or traffic carnage. They also jumped in to helping with tickets, getting people seated and probably a dozen other little bits that I was completely unaware of. On this side too were my dear friends Pam and Lauren. They're the best face of FEAT people, meeting invited FEAT guests as they come in.

Willem Pretorius and Tiaan Ebersohn, who I used to work with, were on camera, shooting footage for the videos of FEAT talks. I go into edit next week at Hartiwood, owned my my friend Paul Kruger. I'll be working with Anel, who has edited all the previous FEAT events. She's a delight to work with.

Erik Vermeulen joined our team to take photos - he's away this weekend but will have photos out for us during next week. I'm sure he's got some great ones of the speakers in action.

Sibushi, new to our team, handled the lighting during the show. There was a huge amount of setup to be done, which literally took all day. They brought in extra lights and just got down to business. Lighting is so not my thing and he's a pro - again another worry I didn't even have to think about. Brett was also new to the team. Brought in as an extra set of hands, Brett got involved with any task that cropped up during the afternoon. Very reassuring to have him on board.

Andrew, from Stage Group, did all the AV setup and monitoring. As a slide-show based talks format, great projection is essential. All went smoothly.

I cannot begin to describe the peace of mind that I have during the event knowing that all of these people know what to do and that I really can switch off leaving them to it. If any crisis happens, I don't even blink because they're resourceful and have the initiative to make a plan.

Thank you everyone for making my adventure dream a reality.

Today, 7 October, is FEAT's first birthday. Here's to many, many more.


(photo by Etienne Marais, as posted on Twitter - @etbal, #featsa; tweets during the event by @HiTec_SA)

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