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General Category => Homebrew Clubs => Club Leadership & Organization => Topic started by: nateo on August 22, 2012, 07:46:26 pm

Title: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: nateo on August 22, 2012, 07:46:26 pm
Any advice on organizing a homebrew comp? My club wants to organize one, but I'm not really sure where to start.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: dbeechum on August 23, 2012, 12:12:28 am
Hit me back of house..

I've got lots of stuff!
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: realbeerguy on August 24, 2012, 02:01:57 am
Has your club done any inter-club comps for the members only?  That is a good way to start and work out any kinks.  Contact neighboring clubs who run comps and pick their brains.  You might want to start by running a limited category comp, say for session beers not to exceed 1.050 (ok 1.060 so Denny can enter).  You will need judges BJCP ranked  for a certified comp.  If you don't have them in your club, then you will need the support of out of town judges.

Hope this gets you on your way.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: jeffy on August 24, 2012, 11:26:03 am
There's a lot of info here:
http://www.bjcp.org/docs/SCPCompHdbk.pdf
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: nateo on August 25, 2012, 08:49:11 pm
Jeff - thanks for the link. I must've missed that when I was looking around on the BJCP site.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: Jimmy K on August 27, 2012, 02:13:07 am
The first thing we did was contact our regional BJCP coordinator who recommended a local judge who would be willing to be judging director (Ron/Bluesman).  A big competition is a lot of prep work.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: Bruce B on August 27, 2012, 05:36:48 am
We host two competitions.  My suggestion would be to start with getting 4 good people to fill the competition coordinator, judge director, head steward, and cellar master positions.  Also set an entry limit that is in line with the number of judges you have.  That will help to keep the competition from getting swamped.  Finally if you haven't been to a competition, it's always helpful to see how others do it.

One last thing.  If you need an entry management system I'd recommend BCOE&M - http://www.brewcompetition.com/

Best of luck!
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: hopfenundmalz on August 27, 2012, 01:52:11 pm
Not obvious stuff from our little comp that is now a 400 entry medium sized comp.

If you competition grows, you need someone to get the word out - print fliers and electronic means. You also might need drop offs at remote locations like the LHBSs in your area, so that means pick up from those locations and transport to the judging site - this can take most of a day. Sorting is a job that can use extra help.

My wife appointed herself the title of "Queen of Swag" this year. Her job was to contact suppliers and get items to be distributed for judge and steward gifts, some cool stuff that also went to the BOS winners in beer and cider/mead, and grab bags at the end for everyone. Lots of time to contact, sort and store the items, and send thank you notes to all that contributed.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: nateo on August 27, 2012, 09:52:09 pm
How many entries per judge is a reasonable number?
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: denny on August 27, 2012, 10:44:44 pm
How many entries per judge is a reasonable number?

I'm kind of a lightweight judge.  I max out at 8 beers per flight and 2 flights per day.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: Jimmy K on August 28, 2012, 12:20:58 pm
BCJP estimates 10 minutes per entry per set of judges, but I've found that if left to set the pace themselves they'll go slower.
 
Ten entries per flight is probably normal. We've had some that were up to 14 and I could really tell the judges were getting tired by the end of the flight. It is tough though since you have to work with the number of entries in each category and the number of judges that show up. 
 
If you have mini-BOS rounds, remember that they'll need additional time at the end of the round for that.  Also, specialty categories may take longer as they are more complicated to judge.
 
This means two judges can judge 20 beers per day, maybe more if neccessary but that's not ideal.
 
Also, regarding competitors and entry forms - give specific instructions and don't be surprized when people don't follow.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: santoch on July 03, 2015, 05:28:36 am
Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but I thought this would be worth mentioning.

An additional thing to keep in mind is to plan on smaller flights for the high alcohol or palate-fatiguing categories.  Stouts, Strong Ales, IPAs, Belgian Strong Ales, Bock, Spice/Herb/Veg, and Specialty should be split to around 8 per flight.  Lighter styles are ok to go with bigger flights.
Above about 12 is when guys get tired and slow.

HTH-
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: twopumpsandimsorry on August 17, 2015, 04:33:03 pm
Our club just did one this past weekend, no one on the team had ever done one before, it was a s**t show.
I have a long list of things not to do.
Biggest thing I would suggest is consistent communication with Judges, email them early and often. Let them know as soon as you can what they will be judging and how many sessions they will be needed. We had two judges disappear between the first and second session. No idea why.
Deadline for entries should be two weeks prior to the event all beers should be in hand one week prior, sort first print entry labels second. then pull sheets. keep the pull sheets with the entries that correspond with the table so stewards can just grab and take them to the judges.
Title: Re: Advice on organizing competitions?
Post by: AmandaK on August 17, 2015, 08:44:48 pm


 
We had two judges disappear between the first and second session. No idea why.

I'm not speaking for the judges, but you answered your question in your first sentence:
Our club just did one this past weekend, no one on the team had ever done one before, it was a s**t show.


Anyway, your list of lessons learned is good and something you should write down and keep for next year. We keep a list of our lessons learned and pass it on to our next year's organizer. Definitely keeps us on the up and up throughout the years (34th annual is next February).