Festival One is multi-day, Christian Festival which takes place over Auckland Anniversary Weekend at the end of January each year. Festival One has been running for seven years now and is held at Mystery Creek Events Centre in Hamilton.
In 2022, the festival enters its eighth year boasting a broad range of fantastic artists, lots of opportunities for the creative arts and a few other surprises along the way. The event attracts around 5,000 guests and takes an epic crew of 1,200 to put together.
Graham Burt, Executive Director of Festival One, takes us back to how it all began.
"In May of 2014, I was walking up a hill on Waiheke Island, cup of coffee in my hand, when an amazing friend of mine, Ian, said, "G, what do you think about Parachute Festival being cancelled?" I told him I was gutted. That I had been to every one since it had moved North, and I knew that he had done almost the same. Ian said, "If I found underwriting for it, would you run it?". I replied "yes". And that was it! Since then, we've absolutely gone for it!"
People love - really love - Festival One. We are continually being told how important Festival One is for this generation and future generations. We agree. We are setting out to steward Festival One well to ensure it endures.
When Festival One took over from Parachute Music Festival, they inherited their IP and the long-standing supplier relationships. One of those suppliers was X-Site. When it came time to renew the contract, Graham and his team assessed their needs, scouted other companies and completed their due diligence, and even then, they happily kept X-Site on. It came down to the fact that X-Site had the ability to supply a wide range of equipment, at a competitive price point and with an excellent level of service. It also helped that they were local, which meant that plans could be easily changed and fixed if needed.
Graham has worked closely with Kevin from X-Site for many years, and what makes this relationship even more beneficial is that Kevin also volunteers at the event and is a part of the build crew. This means he has a lot of knowledge from both sides of the event, and it has some huge benefits. Graham tells us,
"Over the years we've been able to sit down and have some really intelligent conversations and jointly come up with creative and sensible ways of doing things. Kevin helps us make things look better to enhance the look and feel of our event, he's full of great ideas and is a valued part of our design process. What we come out with are well thought out creative solutions which are integral to the success of our festival."
There's a range of equipment that X-Site provide the Festival One team, from marquees of all sizes to a host of smaller equipment such as tables, chairs and accessories, and it all gets heavily used. Graham appreciates that the equipment always turns up well-presented, clean and in good condition.
"One of the biggest advantages of working with X-Site is their flexibility, if we have made mistakes or need to change something last minute, they can adapt and change quickly and are always happy to help us out." Graham goes on to say, "They have stayed the course with us and as a business, have been around a long time, and that doesn't happen if a business is run by cowboys who don't care about their customers. They are jolly good guys and run a highly professional operation. We are really grateful for our relationship with X-Site, and appreciate how easy they are to work with, they add significant value to our event every year."