Hi, there! Welcome to Next Door Neighborhood Events! My name is Jamie Spence. I am an event planner with experience in corporate, pharmaceutical, nonprofit, and residential and community event planning. Thinking I hold a hospitality degree? Nope. Maybe a degree in hotel management? Sorry. No, I learned event planning through years of working events at various high-end resorts and country clubs. I served, I tended bar, I bused tables. I decorated and I broke down decorations. I learned about themes and design. I learned how to order equipment and set up lighting, audio, and video. I learned how to do banquet event orders and handle difficult guests. I worked weddings, concerts, fundraisers, golf tournaments, private parties, corporate parties, and more. I did anything and everything that goes into putting on a successful event.
After graduating from college, I was hired by Marriott Management Services to manage events at the Exxon Mobil Conference Center in Irving, Texas. My English degree didn’t qualify me for this position: my event experience did. I hadn’t known that the method I used to put myself through college would end up opening the door to my career.
Why Community Events
While most business-related events boil down to marketing and sales, community event planning is all about connection. Our culture has become incredibly busy and oftentimes, people connect online far more than they do in person. We find ourselves living in neighborhoods where we don’t know our next door neighbors, much less the folks down the street. When I was hired by a residential developer to help create community in a neighborhood, I didn’t know how much I would love it. I found myself passionately searching for new ideas and ways to help neighbors make friends and to make my employer look good. I tried different methods of communication, various ways to accept payments, various types of locations, and a multitude of themes. I solicited feedback and I got a lot of it! Great communities are a result of essentially two things: communication and connection.
Over the years, I’ve learned quite a bit about what works and what doesn’t, as well as some shortcuts and budget-savers.
People need information and interaction. My heart’s desire is to create great communities. However, I can’t coordinate events and communication in every neighborhood in the nation, so my goal is to provide what I’ve learned to others and let you run with it. Together, we can create inclusive, friendly neighborhoods where all feel welcome.
I invite you to take a look around. I promise you’ll find some things to help you and your neighborhood. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
Great communities are a result of essentially two things: communication and connection.