Choosing your wedding venue
So you’ve gotten engaged (congratulations!) and are ready to start planning for your big day. This can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be so. With a little organization and a decent checklist, you can do it all and still maintain your sanity throughout. Here is a link to one of my favorites, though a Google search will give you countless to choose from, as will a trip to the library or your local bookstore. No matter what list you choose to use, you will find that a common element in all is that near the top of the list (if not at the very top of the list) is to book your wedding venue.
Finding a venue is not always the easiest thing to do—they book quickly (I just got an inquiry last week for 2015!), they each have their own set of rules/do’s and don’ts, they might be a bit pricier than you had anticipated, might not be big enough for your group, might not allow kids, and the list continues… but when you do find a venue that fits your crowd, your budget, your style and is available, book it, check it off of your list, and pat yourself on the back. With this major building block in place, and obviously your date set in stone (if it wasn’t before, it clearly is now) you can now begin securing many other vendors. We have had more than a few brides come through who didn’t quite realize the importance of securing the venue—the poor gals had booked DJs, photographers, caterers, videographers, and more and had given them a date only to find that nothing was available within a reasonable radius on their date (think hot dates such as 9-10-11)…yikes!
Another benefit to securing a venue as one of the first steps in the process is that many wedding and reception facilities have lists of preferred or in-house vendors. This has been a tremendous help to many of our brides and grooms as it eliminates the time of searching online and sorting through reviews (not saying that you can’t or shouldn’t do this), but if the managers of the facility have compiled a list of vendors that they are willing to vouch for, take advantage of it! Trust me; with the weddings I have seen here in the past few years, I can safely say that I have seen the gamut: from a DJ in stained sweats chain smoking as the bride walked down the aisle and an officiator whose body odor you could taste (sadly, I’m not exaggerating here) to the photographer whose work was pure art and a DJ who wasn’t just playing tracks but was really a master of ceremonies and kept the party going. Yes, we have the latter two on our list and we are happy and proud to recommend them. Going with such vendors eliminates much of the guess work and inevitable stress.
So we’ve covered the importance of the venue, but how exactly do you decide if a venue is right for you? Our next post will cover this. In the meantime, if you have any thoughts or tips on venues for our brides reading this blog, please feel free to post below.