You are engaged to be married and have begun the exciting and daunting mission of planning your wedding day. As with most life “engagements,” the more prepared you are, the faster you can “cut to the chase” and make important decisions quickly.
Undoubtedly, the first and most important thing to do is to secure a wedding venue. The look and feel that you want is inspired by the location where it is to be held, such as a wedding on a mountain, on a beach, at a vineyard or downtown.
Before you begin your calls and visits, collaborate with your fiancé and family and decide upon these important factors:
• Budget for your wedding. . .the realistic beginning of options you will consider.
• Timing (year, month, day of the week and time of day) Off-season weddings or those planned on a day other than Saturday can be more economical.
• Location. . .indoor, outdoor or a combination of both. Be sure you have a Plan B, if the venue is strictly an outdoor site.
• Number of Guests: make a list of guests who will receive an invitation. Your wedding day of the week, time of day, time of year and location can enhance or restrict the number of invited guests who will attend. Generally, about 2/3rds of those invited can be present.
• Menu. . .driven by the time that the ceremony takes place. Guests attending weddings held after 4 pm, anticipate a dinner meal, whereas earlier ceremonies satisfy appetites with a brunch or heavy hors d’oeuvres. Plated receptions are usually more affordable than a buffet because the food served on a plate can be quantified. It is difficult to predict the appetites that will be served from a buffet, therefore, more of each menu item must be prepared to be sure all are satisfied.
• Bar beverages (champagne toast, wine, beer or open bar) to be hosted, or not.
• Venue Accommodations needed: a destination venue that offers wedding, dining and lodging services allows for optimum time together with family and close friends.
In our nineteen years at Callahan’s Lodge, the dynamics of planning hundreds of events have afforded us exceptional opportunities to please families, friends and business associates. We are forever grateful to those who have chosen to bond their life events to this special place that we call our home.
Donna Bergquist, owner of Callahan’s Lodge with her husband, Ron, began her professional career in Austin, Texas, in 1972, as the Special Events Director of the anchor fashion store, Joske’s of Texas, in the city’s first mall.