Start your own Shine event

Independently-organized Shine events are run by passionate volunteer hosts and their teams. 

Independently organizing a Shine event offers you an opportunity to introduce your community to fun, inspiring, alcohol-free entertainment, as well as to participate and highlight creative, audience-sourced acts of micro-philanthropy.

If you’re serious about bringing The Shine to your hometown, we’d love to hear from you. Please read through the following Q&A to get a better idea of how The Shine operates. If it feels like the right fit for you, fill out the form at the bottom to receive the event application via email.

Becoming a Shine host

Q: What does it mean to be a Shine host?
A: Each Shine event is led by one person who serves as the host and liaison between the main Shine team and your city. This volunteer represents his/her city by assembling and leading a team and independently organizing the event with the support of The Shine headquarters in Los Angeles.

As the primary host, you would be in charge of all the details for your local event such as:

— Creating social media for your city
— Securing a venue
— Finding a Shine-appropriate speaker, musicians, and performers
— Providing the funds for The Shine On Challenge and managing the process
— Finding sponsors to provide food and beverages
— Leading the team (including a photographer and videographer)
— Marketing for the event
— Serving as the main point of contact for HQ

Q: Do hosts sign a license agreement?
A: Each host signs a license agreement in order to represent The Shine brand and agrees that all content created as a result of a Shine event is property of The Shine Movement 501c3. The license agreement lasts for 12 months and is renewable.

Q: Can there be co-hosts?
A: Yes. We require ONE point of contact for each event who serves as the face of that city but we ask that you nominate a co-host to support you behind the scenes. This way if illness, travel, or any number of life’s surprises prevents you from hosting duties, you have a solid back up. You’re free to organize your team as you see fit, but only one person should be the official host.

Q: Can my non-profit or group apply to be a host?
A: No. The Shine events are licensed to individuals. In many instances, a host’s non-profit supports their member (e.g.committing to longterm sponsorship/resources). But at the end of the day our official relationship is with the individual, and if that person leaves his/her current non-profit, the chapter would remain with that person.

General expectations

Q: How much time typically goes into being a Shine event?
A: On average, a host spends about 40 hours a month building their community and preparing for an event. This number may fluctuate a bit as the host becomes more seasoned, but 40 hours is a good estimate.

Q: How often are events?
A: Each chapter is expected to host a Shine event once a quarter, or every other month. Events are generally held on Saturday evenings in Los Angeles and Tuesday evenings in New York. But you should select a time that works with your local area's traffic patterns to make it accessible for the most people.

Q: Is The Shine always $30USD?
A: Yes and no. We've found that charging $30 per person covers all costs and leaves enough to give away for The Shine on Challenge. 

About your city

Q: Can there be more than one Shine event per city?
A: Ideally not. We prefer to have one per city, at a frequency of at least one event per quarter.

Q: Can I organize a Shine event for my entire country?
A: No. The Shine event licenses are limited to one city.

Q: I live in a small city. Can I still apply to start a Shine event?
A: You’re welcome to apply, but we favor hosts who live in cities with a population of over 500,000. However, we realize that there can be Shine-friendly communities in smaller cities as well, so we are open to hearing about your reach. Just put together a compelling and outstanding application and show us why your city is in need of a Shine event.

Q: What if the city I want to apply for is very close to another Shine event?
A: You’re welcome to still apply. Just ask yourself since the two events would be so close, would it make sense objectively to host a Shine as well?

About the application process

Q: What do you ask for in the application?
A: The application includes a video and a written portion.

Q: How long should my video be?
A: Use your best judgement.

Q: Why do you ask for a video in your application?
A: So far, it’s the best way to get to know someone in a faraway place. Also, recording video of each The Shine performances is very important, and we like to see what kind of quality to expect from your events. ).

Q: Can I submit a video that I already made (for a different purpose) as my video application?
A: We appreciate the efficiency, but no.

Q: If I apply, how long until I hear from you?
A: We review applications once a month so you can expect an update within a few weeks. We are a tiny team at headquarters, and we thank you for your patience!

Q: Are there more steps to the application process after I submit?
A: If your application seems like a good fit, we will setup a Skype or FaceTime interview to learn more about you and your vision for the event.

Q: What are some qualities you look for in a Shine host?
A: Here are four qualities:

— You just make things happen: Organizing a Shine event is a big responsibility and involves many moving pieces. We’ve learned that although experience in the industry and event organization is a plus, it can’t make up for a willingness to get started, figure things out, and make it work.

— You’re good at giving away credit: It takes a certain personality to successfully lead a volunteer team, keep sponsors happy, and celebrate local talent. This event shouldn't be about promoting you or your business. It will be about the fantastic people and talent you assemble.

— You’re obsessed with “mixing up” your community: The Shine was founded to be entirely open and accessible to anyone who is open to joining. Our hosts are willing to make the extra effort required to gather a diverse group for each event from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds.

— You’re flexible: We at HQ do our best to steer The Shine organization with limited time and resources. If you’re looking to join an organization that has everything laid out for you, we’re probably not a good fit. This is an exciting time for The Shine, and we will ask you to experiment with new initiatives while welcoming feedback.

Q: What if I don’t want to apply and would rather start my own event?
A: We think the world could use more Shine-like gatherings, and you’re more than welcome to start your own event with a similar model. We just ask that you do not use the “The Shine” name for your event.

Q: Is applying for an independently-organized event first come first serve?
A: No, not necessarily. However, we do recommend that you get your application in as soon as you can. If we find a host we really like, we’ll grant them the license.

Q: Should I reserve or “park” my city’s social media accounts? (e.g. Twitter)
A: Please do not register The Shine social media accounts on behalf of city you are applying for. Other teams may be applying, your priorities may change, and it’s difficult for us to hunt down reserved accounts. When we launch new cities we will work with you to register those accounts and help you populate them with sample photos and descriptions.

Q: What’s the answer to the secret question?
A: Yoda.

Q: Can I reach out to potential sponsors, venues or speakers before applying?
A: Yes. Committed sponsors, venues and speakers is a great way to strengthen your application. However, please be clear and explain that you do not officially represent The Shine and are applying for a license to start an event.

Organizing a Shine

Q: Do we have to get speakers approved by headquarters?
A: No, but if there's a question of whether they are the best choice, we're happy to offer our opinion.

Q: Are there any additional costs/fees associated with putting on a Shine event?
A: Organizers must cover all of their event costs primarily through ticket sales and local sponsors. As of now, there are no application fees, upfront fees or ongoing fees to headquarters. All proceeds should be used for future events and non-salary operational costs between events (deposits, etc). Headquarters may start charging a licensing fee in the future, depending on our work load.

Q: Do local chapters create LLCs or non-profits?
A: Some chapters do establish organizations to keep finances in order or apply for certain types of funding. However, The Shine does not permit local hosts to use the “The Shine” trademark, or confusingly similar names, as the entity name of their LLC.

Q: Are The Shine speakers or performers ever paid?
A: Not usually. (With the rare exception of reimbursement for travel)

Q: What sort of resources does The Shine headquarters provide?
A: After approval, each organizer receives a batch of files (e.g. brand assets, slides templates, sample marketing materials, photos, etc), the online Shine handbook that details guidelines and learnings from our hosts, and access to our internal Facebook group for all Shine hosts worldwide.

Q: How long is the commitment for being a host?
A: Our licenses are one year long and in most cases we offer hosts the opportunity to renew their agreement each year.

Q: What happens if I’m a host and I’d like to pass on the role to someone else?
A: We have an exit process setup for our hosts. You will have the option to nominate someone who you heavily endorse to be the next host (they will have to complete an abridged application). Otherwise, headquarters will re-open public applications for your city.