Quantcast

Our first wedding!

INNspiring.com | Innkeeper Forum & Innkeeping Resources

Help Support INNspiring.com | Innkeeper Forum & Innkeeping Resources:

Redbirds

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Messages
95
Reaction score
0
All:
We had our first wedding on the grounds of our bnb Saturday. About 40 guests, a calm bride, and beautiful weather (until a hailstorm went through two hours after everyone left!)
Overall it went well, and we'll do it again. The key was flexibility: we asked the bride when she wanted breakfast Sunday morning. She decided she wanted to get an early start and said "8 a.m." We were surprised, but planned accordingly.
When we got up at 6 to start prepping, we found a note in the kitchen. "Could we change breakfast to 10 a.m, if possible?" We sorta knew this might happen, so it wasn't a problem.
Overall, a nice experience. We kept it small: the family rented all (4) rooms for two nights for which we gave a 10% discount.
Here's a picture of the pre-wedding set-up.
 

GeorgiaGirl

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 9, 2008
Messages
808
Reaction score
0
Very pretty! I love your Blue Spruce's! Those are one of my favorite evergreens.
 

egoodell

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2008
Messages
3,023
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki
 

Redbirds

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Messages
95
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
 

Samster

Well-known member
Joined
May 30, 2008
Messages
6,475
Reaction score
14
Location
South Carolina
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
.
Lovely setting! Just beautiful! We had a blue spruce in our yard in Colorado and I love them, too.
I have an inn-mate who does quite a few weddings and she now works with a wedding planner who coordinates everything and also does the food if someone requests that the food be supplied by the B&B. If they call her, she says, "Oh, did you lose Susie's number? Here let me give that to you." She got tired of dealing with the brides. The "patient and flexible" part got to be challenging after her first year of doing weddings. haha!
 

Don Draper

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 10, 2008
Messages
2,863
Reaction score
0
Congrats to you, and thanks for sharing the pic! What a beautiful setting for a wedding. Do you think these will become a big part of your business? Is this normally a slow or busy time of year in your area? I ask because we get TONS of wedding requests, but all for weekends when we will be full anyway, so it's not really worth our while to get involved in all the extra planning, etc. but it's a thought for the winter when we are slow.
 

happykeeper

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2008
Messages
1,758
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
.
Our first wedding is coming up in SEP. Since we are not the "on the ocean " kind of place, we are not a high demand wedding spot, so we are trying to keep it as simple as we can. Your tips are great reminders. Was there anything that you completely forgot about? Last minute surprises?
 

egoodell

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2008
Messages
3,023
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
.
Lovely setting! Just beautiful! We had a blue spruce in our yard in Colorado and I love them, too.
I have an inn-mate who does quite a few weddings and she now works with a wedding planner who coordinates everything and also does the food if someone requests that the food be supplied by the B&B. If they call her, she says, "Oh, did you lose Susie's number? Here let me give that to you." She got tired of dealing with the brides. The "patient and flexible" part got to be challenging after her first year of doing weddings. haha!
.
Samster said:
Lovely setting! Just beautiful! We had a blue spruce in our yard in Colorado and I love them, too.
I have an inn-mate who does quite a few weddings and she now works with a wedding planner who coordinates everything and also does the food if someone requests that the food be supplied by the B&B. If they call her, she says, "Oh, did you lose Susie's number? Here let me give that to you." She got tired of dealing with the brides. The "patient and flexible" part got to be challenging after her first year of doing weddings. haha!
That's why I will not do regular weddings. I have a friend who has a B&B who does mini weddings in Maggie Valley, NC. She's doing some that are bigger now, but I like the 2 - 10 people weddings she does. And they get beautiful pictures, too!
RIki
 

egoodell

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2008
Messages
3,023
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
.
Redbirds said:
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
Thanks for the info. I won't do any that are that big. Another piece of advice I got from an inn that does bigger weddings is to make them purchase insurance for the day. This inn was doing a large wedding and during the reception the father of the groom came limping up to them.
Concerned, they asked if he needed a doctor. He said, "oh no, I'm sure you have insurance" to which they responded, "OH YES, THE BRIDE PURCHASED INSURANCE FOR THE DAY TO COVER ANY ACCIDENTS".
The fellow was seen later dancing away with no limp whatsoever....
RIki
 

JBloggs

Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Oct 7, 2008
Messages
17,743
Reaction score
0
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package.
 

egoodell

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2008
Messages
3,023
Reaction score
0
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package..
Joe Bloggs said:
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package.
Elopment package is more what I'm looking at. A wine country vineyard elopment. Cake, flowers, ceremony, pictures period. Up to maybe 10 people or something like that.
RIki
 

Redbirds

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Messages
95
Reaction score
0
Congrats to you, and thanks for sharing the pic! What a beautiful setting for a wedding. Do you think these will become a big part of your business? Is this normally a slow or busy time of year in your area? I ask because we get TONS of wedding requests, but all for weekends when we will be full anyway, so it's not really worth our while to get involved in all the extra planning, etc. but it's a thought for the winter when we are slow..
Thanks for the kind comments. I should post a picture of the hostas after dime-sized hail came through after the wedding was over ... we met with the insurance agent today.
We've been in business just less than a year, and at this point we think we'll consider doing more of the small weddings, but it probably won't be a big part of what we do. We're trying to be selective.
One bride-to-be last October wanted to rent all the rooms for family, take wedding pictures inside, get make-up & hair done here for NINE ATTENDANTS (none of the girls would be overnight guests) and get married at a church in town. We turned that down. DW and I had fears of make-up, hairspray, and champagne all over the house.
May has been our busiest month in the 10 months we've been open. The bride Saturday booked the weekend last August. The local h.s. graduation was also this past weekend and we probably would've had some bookings, but since we blocked out the weekend immediately we don't know for sure.
 

Redbirds

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Messages
95
Reaction score
0
Is there anything you learned that you would do/ would not do again? We have many wineries here that charge an unbelieveable amount of money for weddings. I would like to do very small, "pick from the menu" weddings that would be affordable, but give the kids a pretty vineyard wedding with great photos.
If they want a reception I'll send them 1/2 mile down the road to Jefferson Vineyards!
Riki.
What we learned:
* definitely have a contract and discuss with the bride
* require the use of a wedding planner so we don't have to rent chairs, decorate, etc.
* know your house limitations (number/size of public restrooms)
* plan B for the chance of rain
* be patient and flexible
* require a cleaning deposit
We did a mini-reception of grapes, cheese & crackers, iced tea and water (bride's choices) for the 40 wedding guests, before the sitdown dinner reception for 150 guests held at a local ballroom. We would do that again, but have declined the chance to host a big reception.
We have two bridal showers coming up, and the harpist at Saturday's wedding commented that she wants to have her daughter's wedding here.
.
Our first wedding is coming up in SEP. Since we are not the "on the ocean " kind of place, we are not a high demand wedding spot, so we are trying to keep it as simple as we can. Your tips are great reminders. Was there anything that you completely forgot about? Last minute surprises?
.
DW had it pretty well planned out. The only things that come to mind are small random things:
The mother-of-the-bride asking for a cup of coffee in the middle of the afternoon (we don't have a pot on all day like some b&bs); requests for ice; the wedding planners didn't decorate inside the house, so we decorated the table-scape.
We also hired a local college student to help with food prep.
 

EmptyNest

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
8,741
Reaction score
1
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package..
Joe Bloggs said:
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package.
Elopment package is more what I'm looking at. A wine country vineyard elopment. Cake, flowers, ceremony, pictures period. Up to maybe 10 people or something like that.
RIki
.
If you want some ideas on elopement packages, check HERE and HERE
 

Country Girl

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 20, 2009
Messages
1,244
Reaction score
1
Hi Redbirds,
Your place looks beautiful. We are constantly getting requests for weddings here but we've hesitated for several reasons: Parking, portable toilets, liquor license, and the biggest reason, weather. Even if we hosted smallish sized weddings of 50 people or less all those issues would come into play. If they were an issue with you how would you deal with them?
 

gillumhouse

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
15,520
Reaction score
83
No wonder they wanted the wedding there! It is a lovely setting. So glad all went well.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

Well-known member
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
3,893
Reaction score
0
Now I want to see the photo of the big smoochie kiss in an embrace! I could see that shot in my mind. Lovely setting!
 

egoodell

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2008
Messages
3,023
Reaction score
0
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package..
Joe Bloggs said:
Weddings are fun. You can make more money imo, hosting wedding nights. Unless you keep the wedding simple and small like an elopement package.
Elopment package is more what I'm looking at. A wine country vineyard elopment. Cake, flowers, ceremony, pictures period. Up to maybe 10 people or something like that.
RIki
.
If you want some ideas on elopement packages, check HERE and HERE
.
catlady said:
If you want some ideas on elopement packages, check HERE and HERE
Great examples, thanks!
riki
 
Top