Tent / Canopy recommendations

KevinL

Member
I'm looking for a 10x20 canopy for our cross country team ... anyone have a favorite brand or reseller? Thanks!
 

xcandtrack

New member
i've purchased Impact Canopies, we have a 10 x 15 and a couple 10 x 10 we just bought for this years track season (didn't see much use). The 10 x 15 we've had for 15 years, I've had to make a few wind damage repairs and replaced the bag once. I keep pretty tight control of it, it stays with the XC/Track coaches so it doesn't get abused.
Sublimated custom top and sides, heavy duty aluminum frame. The 10x10 were about $1,000 each.
 

Mr. Slippery

Well-known member
I'm looking for a 10x20 canopy for our cross country team ... anyone have a favorite brand or reseller? Thanks!
The thing I hate about 10x20s is the larger size and extra weight makes them more difficult to handle which can lead to abuse during transport.
My school had a 10x20 for awhile. All I remember is how heavy it was and what a pain it was to load and unload from the bus.

In its place, we got a pair of 10x15s. 1 10x15 offered enough room for the XC team or for the number of kids we'd take to a normal track invite. With the way XC meets are anymore, the team's not there long enough to need the amount of space that more coverage provides. For a track dual meet, we'll take both 10x15s to have 1 for the boys and 1 for the girls unless we know it's a facility where we can get coverage under the bleachers or wherever. 1 of those was sent over a fence last spring and broke some of the truss pieces.

Eventually, the 10x20 was going to be a problem after our bus driver cracked down on leaving stuff in the aisle or blocking the rear windows. There's no way the 10x20 would've fit under the seats or into a seat. I could wedge a 10x15 into a seat.

Those were all EZ-UP tents. EZ-UPs seem rather overpriced, IMHO. The quality is obviously better than the flimsy skinny-tubed 10x10s they sell for cheap at big box stores, but I think quality comparable to EZ-UP or possibly even higher quality can be had for a better price. The roller bags that came with the 10x15s were also poor quality but may have been redesigned since we got our 10x15s back in 2013. Last time I looked, it was about $150 for a replacement roller bag. On the 10x15 that broke, I searched EZ-UP's website for replacement parts. They had the parts, but the prices seemed exorbitant. I found a website for an EZ-UP authorized parts dealer and was able to get the parts for 1/2 of what EZ-UP was asking on their own website. $100 for the parts, and I was able to repair it myself. Upon repair, I stashed it in a spot where it won't be commandeered by any random groups (ex. baseball team selling concessions at their field during summer league games).

Maybe you're lucky and have some parents/supporters who own businesses and who might be interested in slapping their company logo on the canvas in exchange for some money to help defray the cost of the tent. The big money is in the canvas and the lettering/design on the canvas. I've seen a few team's tents have the local shoe store's logo on the canopy. I don't know what type of financial arrangement occurred to make that happen.
 

SMARTY22

Well-known member
I'm looking for a 10x20 canopy for our cross country team ... anyone have a favorite brand or reseller? Thanks!
Saw a family at Baseball Game a few weeks ago, they had a small canopy with some type of weights to help hold it down. Looked nice,they weren’t scrambling when winds/rains came and heard them say they bought it at . Don’t know what brand.
 

madman

Active member
Similar to Mr. Slippery, my XC teams have used nothing but 10x20 EZ-UPs since 1998. They are expensive but last more than 10 years and our boosters having been willing to pay for them since we don't really have any other equipment needs outside of uniforms.

They are heavy and require special care to get into a bus. We've found you can squeeze them in between seats if you put them in upside down. However, if it slips while doing so you can break joint connections. Bolts tend to become loose so you have to be disciplined about checking them; otherwise, you have an unusuable collection of nylon and aluminum pieces parts.

If you get a 10x20, buy a hand-truck with big tires and several bungee cords to haul it around - even then it will be the least desirable pre-meet/post-meet duty.

Protect your investment by developing a consistent procedure of transporting it, setting it up, and checking the bolts before taking it down. Letting it drop to the ground from a standing position will almost certainly result in broken pieces. Don't set it up if it's going to be windy - just use your bus if it's rainy and windy.

I am interested in hearing from others who have bought cheaper brands and been happy with the quality.
 

tmk

Member
Hi Kevin,

I ran in your neck of the woods (literally) last Sunday.

We currently have a pair of 10x20 EZ Up tents, courtesy of some amazing parents that raised the money on their own and just donated them to the team a few years ago.

We can't fit a 10x20 on our buses and still keep the drivers happy, but we do have parents that volunteer to bring the tents to the meet for us. The parents usually come down to the school when they are dropping of their athletes/we are getting ready to leave before the meet. The kids help load up the tents (or walls, if needed). The parents follow us out, the kids unload the tents (like Madman suggests, ours are bungeed onto a hand truck), and set things up. We reverse the process to take them home, keeping the tents in a storeroom that is less than 8 ft. from where the kids get off the bus. Sometimes, parents will pick up a tent the night before, if it is convenient.

However...

Our original tent - one that went 15 years for us, and is still useable to a large degree - is courtesy of a company out of Texas called Shade King.


Their prices are way less than EZ Up, once you get past that 1990's website experience and the... unique... personality of the owner. They use steel tubes, so it's heavy (right around 120 lbs), but you could hit that thing with a bat and it would still hold up. They were a little limited on colors, and don't screen print themselves, but that's easy to work around - plenty of people can put a logo on that for a team.

Our boys team uses another company, Eurmax: https://www.eurmax.com/premium-pop-up-canopy.html

Their tent seems a little higher weight than ours, but again the cost is significantly less than what you see with EZ Up.
 
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