Location, Arrival, Set Up, and Closing

 Scouting Locations

  • If the location is unfamiliar to you, consider scouting in advance.
    • Farmer’s Markets: busy hubs of community life. Markets are great places to find supporters. Generally people are more conscientious and moving at a slower pace.
    • Foot Traffic: active street corners, public transit stops, shopping centers, and town squares are good.
    • Timely Events:  follow your personal interests. Search online or in local paper to find events in your community that will draw large crowds: music festivals, runs, seasonal street fairs, downtown art walks, and pride or cultural parades.
    • Big Rallies or Demonstrations: as long as you do not obstruct street or sidewalk traffic, we’ve found it’s usually fine to set up a small table or use clipboards and circulate through the crowds. Get lots of volunteers for large events and set up a base camp if you can.
  • Do I need a permit if I’m on a public sidewalk?
    • Ask to speak to someone (e.g.: store owner) if you are concerned. 
    • Otherwise consider “do now, ask later” when setting up a table. 
    • Be aware that someone (e.g. law enforcement) may ask you to leave. 
    • If requested to leave, be polite and leave.


  • If a controlled location and someone knows that you are coming, your first step is to find that person and introduce yourself. 
  • If you’ve been unsuccessful in reaching someone ahead of time, try to find the person in charge on the same day, and let them know what you would like to do.
  • Unless you have permission from the operator or manager of the market, store, post office, or other place, you should not just set up your table. 
  • If still no sign of authority or not clear, see if there is a designated area, use your best judgment or consider clipboards and circulate outside near the entrances.
  • Move if asked.   

Set up your Table and Display

  • Bring supplies. See Tabling Materials Checklist.
  • Clear signage: Keep it simple! Poster board and markers are adequate.
  • On windy days, use stones, plastic clothes pins or large clips to keep papers from flying away.

Closing & Storage

  • See Merchandise and Cash Handling Procedure
  • Thank the host.
  • Pack up gear and return gear at the earliest possible date to the correct location.
  • Put completed postcards, Statements of Support, photo petition forms, etc. into manila envelope and give to your data entry person or contact HCAO office for instructions about where to submit.
  • Photo submission TBD
  • If there any handouts or materials that should be re-stocked, notify your local leader.