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How to Post An Event on the CL Calendar

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How to Post An Event on the CL Calendar

 

This is a fairly lengthy posting. Please do not be turned off by that fact. Most of the length comes from the numerous screenshots. Posting of an event is not complicated, and shouldn't take more than about two minutes, once you have all of your information collected and access to your online graphics/documents.

 

What Is An Event?

In the real world, an "event" is something that happens or is regarded as happening, in other words an occurrence, especially one of some importance; an event is something that occurs in a certain place during a particular interval of time. Examples are a club meeting, a concert, a church service, a national holiday, a fund raising drive conducted on a TV or radio program, a celebratory party, an opening ceremony for a new business, etc. With regard to CL, an event is an entry (a posting) on one of the configured calendars.

 

Why is the Calendar So Important?

Why is it important to post events on the CL calendar? CL has a fairly sophisticated calendaring capability. This is important functionality for two primary reasons.

  1. First, you get to advertise, publicize, or market your event so that you maximize participation, including by those other than with whom you directly communicate or know.
  2. Secondly, by looking at the calendar while planning a future event, you can see what other events are scheduled during the time frame for your planned event. You may wish to reschedule your event if you find that a major event would be competing, thus lowering the likelihood of people attending your event.

 

The Upcoming Events Panel

There is a very important advantage for posting events on the calendar. There is a display of upcoming events on the CL homepage, and that display is called the "Upcoming events" panel. The software automatically updates the upcoming events panel to display a maximum of 20 events, in chronological order, and looking for one week into the future. See the below screenshot and pay particular attention to the rightmost area. What this means is that everyone who accesses CL will see the homepage, which includes the upcoming events panel. This panel provides a fantastic (and free) opportunity for event planners to place their event in front of many viewers on an ongoing basis. CL users do not have to go to some obscure or remote part of the website to find out what is happening in the area. Events on the calendar provide the data for the upcoming events panel.

Upcoming Events Panel.png

 

How To Access the Calendar

The calendar itself is accessed by clicking on the "Calendar" icon in the upper left area of the browse tab while looking at the homepage. See the below screenshot.

Selection of Calendar.png

What will then be displayed is the main calendar dialog, typically showing the current month and all configured calendars. From this window, you will be able to select the time period to be displayed, as well as the style in which it is displayed. See the below screenshot.

Calendar Overview.png

In the above screenshot, you will see that display option is a monthly period, and that the month being displayed is December 2017. If you wish to view a prior month or a following month, then you may click on the previous and next month hotlinks at the top left and top right of the main calendar display (they are shown as November 2017 and January 2018 in this screenshot).

If you wish to view the calendar information in other than a full month display, then you may select the "Week" or the "Day" options in the center below the title. There also is an "Event Stream" option, which we will not discuss in this topic, other than to say that the Event Stream is somewhat similar to the "Activity Stream" for viewing member activity in the forums, blogs, photo galleries, etc. You are free to pursue the Event Stream if interested.

 

How to Create A New Event

To create an event, simply click on the "Create event" icon while in the calendar display window, as shown in the below screenshot.

Create Event.png

The next dialog (see below screenshot) is where you select which calendar is to be used for your event.

Calendar Selector.png

Note that the calendar functionality on CL is quite robust, and includes the ability to have different specific calendars (to be used for different purposes, or perhaps be viewed by privileged members, such as moderators or administrators). CL is currently configured with five calendars, and such that all calendar events are visible to all authorized users.

CL's calendars have been configured for several different purposes. Currently there are five different calendars:

  • Community Events Calendar
  • Repetitive Health, Exercise, Sports, Dance, Hobby Activities
  • Religious and Spiritual Activities
  • Holidays, Festivals, and Fairs
  • Crime Reports Calendar

When you click on the calendar selection pull-down selection dialog, you will then see the five calendars currently configured on CL.

Calendar Selection List.png

Regular members may post events on the first three of those five calendars. Only administrators and moderators may post on the last two calendars (and those are grayed out for those not authorized to create events on them).

You need to select which calendar to post your event on. For instance, if you are a minister and wanting to post your Sunday church services on the calendar, then you obviously would select the third calendar.

Most other events will be posted on either the first or second calendar. The difference between the two (as configured here on CL) is whether your event is a "discrete" event, meaning that it is a one-time event, which would use the first calendar, or if your event is more of a repeating "activity", such as a commercial fitness routine, which should select the second calendar.

If you are not clear about which calendar to post on, simply select one, and the moderators/administrators will routinely review and offer advice and/or reconfigure an event. This is not a crisis situation; don't lose sleep over it.

The most important and discriminating factor between the first and second calendar options is whether your event is a discrete (one time) event, or a repeating event.

Note that the five different calendars display using different colors on the calendar display. This helps users of CL who are looking at the calendar dialog to figure out what kind of events they are looking at. At times there can be many events on one day, and things can get confusing.

 

How To Input the Information That Is Needed to Create An Event

     Start With the Start Date, Start Time, Stop Date, and Stop Time Fields

The first group of configuration data is related to the start and stop date(s) and time(s), as well as if it is a "repeating" event.

Start Stop Time and Zone.png

This is the dialog that will cause the most difficulty. If you just take each step slowly, but knowing what the particulars of your event are, then this is just a clerical function. The reason for recommending going slowly is to get you not to assume that all events fit in the same profile. For instance, some events are "all day long" (e.g., a national holiday) and so have no start or end time (in reality these kinds of events do have a start and end time, but those times are midnight to midnight).

Note also that some events actually span multiple days (e.g., Carnival is a multi-day national celebratory period/event).

The start date and time data is inputted in the leftmost of the two date/time sections; the stop date and time data is inputted in the rightmost of the two date/time sections. Start with the start date and time, and also respond to the two "toggle" buttons below those fields. If you check the "Single day" button, then the rightmost field will request only the stop time; uncheck the "Single day" button, and the rightmost field will request both the stop date and the stop time. Similarly, if you check the "This is an all day event" then no start and no stop times will be requested.

One of, and perhaps the most important field to be configured during entering an event, is the timezone of the event. Refer to the green arrow in the above screenshot. This appears to be a difficult concept for some people to understand. Rather than bore you with unnecessary details, just be sure that the timezone, which is set in the pull-down selection list in the right area just below the date and time entries is set to the "America/Panama" setting. Failure to configure the correct timezone will produce strange/incorrect displays for other users of CL.

     How To Configure An Event As A "Repeating" Event (If Applicable)

The hardest concept to understand is that of a "repeating" event. Take for instance the Team Trivia fund raising event, which is held every other Tuesday at Skateworld. The basic event would indicate the first Team Trivia event, which has a start and end date (which would be the same date), and a start and end time. But then this event is repeated every other Tuesday, using the same start and end times. We will address repeating events in another paragraph or two. Just remember to keep the concept of a repeating event as something totally different from an event that spans multiple days.

Configuring a repeating event can be confusing to the uninitiated. There are many variations in how an event can repeat. You enter the repeating configuration dialog by clicking on the Repeating event configuration box; see the below screenshot (see the blue arrow).

Repeating configuration.jpg

When clicking the repeating link, then you get another dialog. See the below screenshot.

Repeating event config.jpg

The first parameter to configure for a repeating event is the interval of the repetition. The options are daily, weekly, monthly, or annually. The second parameter is the frequency, which is a number.

There is a special case if you specify the interval to be weekly, and that is that you can specify which days of the week that an event occurs. For instance, if you have a club meeting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10:00AM to 11:00AM, during the month of February 2018, then you would create a new event that starts on February 2, 2018 (which is the first applicable day of the week in February 2018), be configured for repetition per the below screenshot.

Sample repeating event.jpg

And results in the following display:

Overview of repeatig event.jpg

One final comment about configuring a repeating event: Please do NOT configure your event to last forever. Doing so will result in an edit by a CL moderator or administrator. CL has a policy of allowing repeating events to be configured for about three months. If toward the end of that time frame your event is still valid, then your event can be either edited to extend the stop date, or reentered as a new event. Simply request assistance from @Moderator_02 or email to support@chiriqui.life.

     How to Enter The Basic Description of your Event

These fields are rather straightforward, and very similar to how one enters the data for a topic or reply. We are not going to repeat those details here, but rather refer you to http://www.chiriqui.life/topic/8125-how-to-post-a-topic-and-how-to-reply-to-a-topic/. Refer to the below screenshot for the fields associated with the basic event description fields.

Main text entry.png

 

The Remaining Fields that Need To Be Configured

There are only a few remaining fields that need your attention.

If you would like to include a "Cover Photo", then you can upload it. Be advised that the "Cover Photo" is something that displays behind only the header information in your event, but in several cases this can be very effective at creating reader interest.

The most important of those remaining fields is the Location parameter.

 

Bottom section.png

 

The Location Field (aka Google Maps Data)

The location field essentially is a Google Maps field that results in a graphical depiction of the location of the event. It is not difficult to configure, but baffles many people. This issue of configuring the Google Maps data fields has been made relatively easy as of early 2018. Many of the more common venues in the Boquete area have been "pre-defined", and it is simply a matter of scrolling down a pull-down list of those venues and selecting the appropriate venue.

Only if your venue is not one of the pre-defined venues, then we recommend that you review a separate topic here on CL. Simply go to that topic (Click Here for Google Maps Data), scroll down to find your venue, and then copy the configuration parameters directly into your event. Or perhaps you are already familiar with Google Maps and need no assistance.

 

(Optionally) Inserting One Of Your Photo Albums

If you have established a photo album, then it is easy to include those photos in your event by invoking the "Album" pull down menu. Most CL members tend to skip over this function. If you invoke this option, then all of the photos in the selected album will be appended to the bottom of your event.

 

The Final Review and Submission of Your Event

Go back to the top of your event and review everything. When you are satisfied that you have provided as much information as you can, then click on the "Submit an event" at the very bottom of the window.

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