People: I think the average over the last few years has probably grown from 100 up to around 185 this year. And those are the paid members. We had quite a few non-tdi'ers show up to watch and learn.
How long: I think most Fests informally start Fri night with a social outing, and usually go through Sunday. I think Monday's are left open for travel time.
Number of hotel rooms: I think we pretty much completely booked the Holiday Inn (85 rooms or so), and started to fill up our backup hotel as well. Plus, a good part of the registered members where from the area and probably stayed at home (60+ from WI).
Space is all dependent on what you are going to do. We had an 8 car repair garage (we also used parking lot for Dyno and biodiesel sales), the local town hall for vendors and biodiesel presentations, and a very large park with 180 parking spots for general parking, show-n-shine parking, slow speed skills course, and the pig roast. We also made arrangements with the local bar (they provided our lunch) and bowling alley to use their parking lots and facilities if needed.
What's 'typical' for a TDIFest is about asking the same as what a 'typical' tdi'er is.
In all seriousness I think Edward is pretty close on those numbers. There are A LOT of variables that come in to play, but I would estimate 100-200 people and it will probably be somewhere in between (yes a large variation).
Registration (sometimes a social drink area has been setup) Friday night.
Saturday and Sunday are the events ending with a dinner
Monday - Drive home so nothing planned here.
Space varies depending upon what is planned. Sometimes a larger hotel parking lot works (when the hotel is ok with it) and it depends what is done there.
Perhaps some previous organizers can chime in here?
I am going to try and work something up for the Vail/Avon area. The area is beautiful and there is alot of places for nice group drives.
Easy access on I-70 and a number of surounding highways.
I can pull some strings to get discounted lodging, plus the space needed. I can more than likely get a few sponsors as well. Which brings up another question... would I/we be responsible for sponsorships or would someone else handle that?
TDiFest is a labor of love - it's work, and the more people you have to help, the better. The organizers are responsible for planning the registration all the way through to the sunday night awards banquet. Events are planned for Sat and Sun with some 'free' time thrown in for sightseeing, etc. Activities can also be planned to 'guide' out of towners such as brewery tours or other tourist-y things.
Generally the Fest has been more about connecting with other forum members than with your car (show and shine and chipping are the usual exceptions!) A lot of people travel long distances to attend and don't want to tear apart their car before a 1000mi return trip! Also hotels are much more likely to host the event if you can guarantee that suspensions aren't being replaced in their parking lot!
The Fest is our way of supporting this website. It's the major source of income that pays the costs associated with running the equipment that runs the website. Think Jerry Lewis for TDiclub.com.
It's also a way to put faces to the screen names we've come to 'know' over the years. May new and lasting friendships are established at the Fests. Many times people find folks that have been in their own backyard but wouldn't have discovered that if not for the Fest. It's a social gathering rather than a 'working' GTG (at least in the past)- with the exception of our vendors.
The work comes in organizing registration, deciding fees, arranging for space, vendors, donations, figuring out where you're going to park 100+ cars, etc. It's in the details, and any of the previous organizers can give feedback - just send a pm if this thread doesn't get you enough info!