There's so much to say on this subject. Here I'm revamping last years post on the subject. First because I have learned and noted so many things I did not include last year, but also because I have taken a writing course and realized how awful the original post was 🙂 . This is still just an entree to the next step. If you would like more details, or to share your experiences, please Comment below 🙂 You can find information on many venues, photographers, and other wedding professionals here: https://wickedgooddj.com/maineweddingdj/maine-wedding-resources-page/
The Initial shock
There is a process they all go through that begins with Will You Marry Me? followed by an emotional explosion, sometimes crying, sometimes laughing, sometime screams of yes yes yes! or Oh My God!, or in at least for one couple I worked with, and I quote... "shut up!"
So Many Questions...
Start by asking friends who have been married some important, and sometimes rather personal questions. Of course you will want to make sure they are close enough friends to be able to ask these questions. You also want to be sure you know them well enough to know how important each piece was to them, how happy they were with each one, and most importantly, what they would do differently. You also want to ask them who they used, what their budget was for each, what the total cost was. If they have the actual information and are willing to share it, this can be a gold mine for you.
Let The Research Begin!
You will learn pretty quickly that the very first thing you need to do is choose; do you want the ceremony in the same location as the reception? This is often a decision that involves parents and family traditions. My wedding for example, was in the same church as my beautiful brides parents. It had strong sentimental value to my wife and her family. This took one decision out of our hands, and made finding our reception venue much easier. I will address the money issue in my next blog post, hopefully with actual statistics, both national and local.
Book 'em Danno!
Once this established, book the church or ceremony venue. If you'll be having your wedding and reception in the same location, you can skip a step and start choosing the wedding professionals you will want to work with on your wedding day. If they are in separate locations you will want to start searching for the ideal space for your reception.
This may take longer. You'll want to pick the geographic location, which is usually the closest to the least mobile close family. if you are fortunate enough that your whole family is relatively healthy, you have a bit more freedom and your only restriction is your budget.
What do you want your wedding day canvas to look like? Maine and New England Have so many beautiful and scenic options. Will you be in a Barn or Ballroom? Maybe a more industrial setting? Perhaps you have a family member willing to have you hold your reception on their property? There is a lot to be said on this subject and will be covered in an upcoming blog.
OK, our wedding has a home, now what?
Once the location or locations are determined, it's on to selecting the professionals who will make the most of that amazing space. The DJ/ band or photographer (these two constantly vie for 2nd place after the venue(s), followed by the finer details. Off site catering services are generally chosen after the DJ and photographer unless of course they already have a favorite caterer in mind. I don't know the reason behind it, but feel free to choose these based on your own priority list. Remember, when choosing food, many times it is a key element of the atmosphere. what better food for a barn wedding than BBQ or kabobs, right?
While I am biased, I know everyone has a priority. For some it is the food, for others it's the music, and for still others it's the photographer, or videographer. one of the best places to start your search is right here at: https://wickedgooddj.com/maineweddingdj/maine-wedding-resources-page/
The client Journey
All of this happens anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before the actual wedding day, and a lot of time lapses between that time of booking things, and the time of planning things, so in essence, this first in person planning meeting often unleashes a torrent of information that is almost as overwhelming as the initial "Will You Marry Me?", though it does wear off a little quicker. Yes, Bride Brain is a thing, so don't be nervous or worried about whether you have asked a questions twice, and remember, there are no stupid questions, ever. 🙂 Every one of us will tell you to feel free to drop us a note with questions any time. I personally like to send occasional check ins to see if I can help.
Happily Ever After...
To help you get prepared without feeling overwhelmed, many wedding professionals, myself included, have their first client meeting at least 6 weeks before the wedding, and give them a good week to absorb it all. In an upcoming post I will attempt to help you, the Bride, and/or Groom to be ready for that first meeting, so stay tuned. I will have a blog coming up about the things you should be ready to discuss, and or at least have thought about on that first meeting. Being the beginning of the year, there is so much to get into, and we definitely will. As for this Blog post, with so much left to say I have simply run out of time. stay tuned...
Musically yours, Mike
M&M Entertainment - South Portland Maine - www.wickedgooddj.com - [email protected]