Planning a Business Party

business party

An off-site business party is a great opportunity to mingle with co-workers in an environment outside the workplace. People can “let their hair down” and get to know one another a little better. Over time, this can actually lead to increased workplace productivity.

If you get the opportunity to plan such a party, there will be plenty of questions to answer.

First, you’ll have to think about your budget. How much money to you have to spend and how are you going to spend the money?

Will you promote the party on social media or just promote it through internal office communications? Will you need to book entertainment? Will the party need a theme?

Themes can work great around the holidays. For those parties, the theme can be…the holidays. Easy enough. Problem solved. You can also brainstorm to come up with other ideas. It’s important to remember that any theme should be in good taste. Remember, this is still a work party.

One of the great benefits about throwing the off-site office party is that you don’t have to worry about space or after-party cleanup.

The off-site party at a banquet facility will also be great when it comes to food and drink. There is no worry or need to call a caterer. If you want a special menu or food to match up with a certain party theme, talk to the people at the facility and ask about any special foods you’d like to provide and see if they can accommodate you. You can likely choose from different food and bar plans.

Do your best to select a date and time that works for most of your co-workers. The party does not have to be long. 2-3 hours is a good time frame, especially if it is held on a weeknight after work.

Fall Wedding Fashions

fall wedding fashion

Let’s not rush past the rest of summer but fall will be here soon. Fall is a very popular time for weddings. Fall weddings means making different fashion choices than you would for spring or summer wedding. It can be confusing at time, but there are outfits that are perfect for a fall wedding.

Attending a true fall black-tie wedding means formal gowns for women and tuxedos for men. For women, black is an acceptable color for the gown as is a jewel color. Men can stick with the classic tuxedo look.

For fancy but less-formal fall weddings, women can go with a simple yet pretty dress. If it’s more of a casual wedding, think about a dress that would work at a casual workplace function. If you want to go with something a little more formal, consider a single-color dress with simple lines that can work with a scarf or jacket. Also think about a dress that embraces fall colors. These are colors like maroon, purple, turquoise and dark green.

Be smart with your feet. Heels are good but if it outdoors later in the day, think about how the fall temperatures drop once the sun goes down. It might be a good idea to bring a pair of flats.

If you are a guest, check with the bride to see what colors the bridesmaids are wearing. You don’t want to wear anything that is too similar in style or color.

There are some colors to avoid. One would be white (for obvious reasons). Also stay away from brown. Sure, it’s a fall color, but it can also be a bit of a dour and depressing look at a wedding. Avoid summer colors like pink or baby blue. It’s time to embrace the fall season.

Pack a lightweight coat or a scarf in cause that fall air becomes a little too chilly. This is especially true for October weddings.

Crowdfunded Weddings

crowdfunded weddings

Weddings are expensive. Couples are looking to cut costs wherever they can. Even if that means asking the wedding guests to help pay for some of the wedding.

You see, crowdfunded weddings are a thing now. This means basically asking guests to pony up to help with the wedding costs.

Need help with setting up a crowdfunded wedding? No problem. There are websites targeted to couples who decide that crowdfunding a wedding is the way to go. These crowdfunding websites help organize the money collection process in hopes that it will run somewhat smoothly. Some of these sites do have service charges, so it’s important to read the terms and conditions and all the other fine print, especially if you are a first-time user.

Here are the basics: Couples can set a goal of raising a certain dollar amount, with all the money going towards the cost of the wedding. It’s certainly a different take on the traditional wedding registry. This has couples rethinking how they budget their wedding and has wedding guests rethinking those wedding gift plans.

Couples should probably set a realistic fundraising goal. And they need to look to cut costs wherever they can before asking guests to chip in. Guests probably don’t want to be asked to contribute money, then show up at a $30,000 wedding. Check your guest list and see if you can pair it down without hurting too many feelings. Check for used wedding dresses. Talk to vendors about special deals. Consider an off-season wedding. Lots of wedding reception facilities will run deals on wedding that take place off-season. This usually means the months of November, December, January and February.

Are crowdfunded weddings a fad or sign of things to come? Time will tell, but it certainly sheds a light on how creative people can be when trying to cut wedding costs.

Fast Food Wedding

McDonald's Wedding

Sometimes you find out the strangest things when reading about weddings. Few are stranger than this: The McDonald’s in Hong Kong has a wedding package. That’s right. You can get a Big Mac, fries and a spouse.

This has been going on for almost four years in the Hong Kong location. Apparently business is doing ok. For now, Hong Kong is the only location in the world where you can get a Quarter Pounder and a vow of lifetime commitment under the same roof.

It looks like a savvy move for the fast food king. Lots of people eat at McDonald’s, there’s obvious brand recognition and there is never a shortage of couples that want to have non-traditional, offbeat wedding ceremonies. What could be more offbeat than getting married under the corporate banner of the same company that gave us a fictional elected official named Mayor McCheese and a fictional career criminal called The Hamburglar.

When the Hong Kong McDonald’s first went into the wedding business, there was a report that Hong Kong’s wedding industry was worth about 10.7 billion Hong Kong Dollars. McDonald’s apparently saw an opportunity to cash in.

It’s not all fun and games and secret sauce (which sure tastes like Thousand Island dressing) at a Hong Kong McDonald’s ceremony. Couples who are serious about romance and mass-produced chunks of chicken meat can choose wedding packages that feature a crystal McDonald’s house, bridal bouquets in pink and white and a pair of McDonald’s ballroom wedding rings.

Obviously, this is not a wedding concept that would be embraced by most couples. Some are more traditional. Others just prefer Wendy’s.

If you want real food for thought about choosing a wedding venue, choose a place that serves up elegance and luxury. Oh, and delicious food and a full bar.

What is a Shadow Wedding?

shadow wedding

For most engaged couples, the wedding day is a day to exchange and begin building a life together. It is a day of celebration.

So what is a shadow wedding?

Well, at first glance, it sounds like kind of a bummer. It’s apparently a ceremony before the wedding ceremony. At this ceremony, the couple apparently says disparaging about the other person, to the other person. Since this is an actually ceremony, guests are invited. Couples then apparently admit to their neurosis and various shortcomings.

The shadow weddings are often held at night, in the dark. The dress is usually less-than-formal. Many of these ceremonies are often being handled by professionals in the wedding business. These shadow weddings are not necessarily cheap either. These ceremonies can actually cost a few thousand dollars.

It sounds like it is a bit of a “dare-to-be-different” activity for engaged couples who have a healthy amount of disposable income.

Do some reading about shadow weddings and you’ll quickly find yourself reading about shadow wedding ceremonies where the couples were saying some really mean-spirited things to one another. There a man telling his future bride that he is going to cheat on her and not tell her. Then this is the future bride telling the future groom that she will recent him when he inevitably becomes the reason whys she is being held back in her career.

Some people have nothing to say but positive things about the experience, using words like “liberating” and “cathartic” to describe the shadow wedding. To each his own. Or their own.

In the meantime, remember the fun that can be had at a traditional wedding. Plan ahead and enjoy a beautiful ceremony and lively reception at a beautiful spot like Seasons at the Tradition. A courteous and trained staff will help make your wedding memorable. No nasty words necessary.

Save During Summer Wedding Season

wedding season savings
Whether you are a bride, bridesmaid or just a simple guest, the wedding season can get expensive fast. And, as we all know, summer is a big part of wedding season. Sure, May and June are the “hot months” for couples to tie the knot, but July, August and September are still busy months for ceremonies.

So are there ways to attend or take part in wedding season weddings and still have money for other summer activities? Of course there are:

Set Your Budget. Here’s the deal with budgets: It’s hard to set a budget and even harder to stick to a budget. One way to do it is to set a budget as soon as you receive the wedding invitation. Sit down and set a budget for the bridal shower/bachelor party, the wedding gift, wedding attire and anything else tied to the actual ceremony (like transportation and lodging). Add any incidentals that are applicable and stick to your budget.

Clip Coupons. Speaking of budgets, keep an eye out for coupons that can help cut some of those costs. If you are not usually a coupon clipper, this will require more discipline to remember to save those coupons.

Save Early. Don’t try to save or spend all at once. And don’t max out your credit card. Put some money aside each month to defer some of the wedding costs.

Turn your wedding stay into a little R & R. If you do some homework, you’ll find that some hotels will honor the lower wedding rate for a few extra days. This means, if you can swing it, you can turn that wedding trip in a mini-vacation at an affordable price.

If you are single, go stag. If you have a serious boyfriend/girlfriend, that’s one thing. But just bringing a friend just for the sake of have a wedding date will get expensive. Go solo. You might find out you have more fun. Let’s just leave it at that.

Wedding Music to Your Ears

wedding music 2

There is no disputing that music is a huge part of a wedding. And yet, like so many other parts of wedding planning, choosing the music for your wedding festivities can be hectic and stressful.

There is no need for such fretting. You just need to have a wedding music game plan.

We know the right music can make your day of wedded bliss complete. The idea of the perfect music is what can lead to all that stress. There is the fear of choosing the wrong music option. Should there be a pianist? Should a harp make an appearance? Wedding band or wedding DJ?

Decide on Your Style

Sit down with your fiancée and decide on the music that best fits you both. It’s never a bad choice to go the traditional route and break out “Here Comes the Bride”. It’s classic and instantly recognizable. This is a decision that could be tied to the location of your wedding ceremony. If you are getting married in a big church, “Here Comes the Bride” played on a church organ will likely sound terrific.

If you are choosing a less-traditional wedding venue, you may want to go with a musical choice that’s more modern.

No matter what type of music you choose for your ceremony, location will matter. The size of the room will factor in how the music is heard.

Band or DJ?

Choosing between a wedding band or DJ often comes down to cost. Wedding bands tend to be more expensive. There are a few more people that will need to eat and the tip will likely be larger. The location of the reception will also be a factor. Some facilities will be too small for a band. Others have beautiful, spacious banquet rooms that can accommodate either a band or a DJ.

Money & Marriage

money planning

There are many times when marriage and money have an uneasy relationship. We know that disagreements about finances and fundamental differences in how to manage money are among the top reasons cited for divorce.

This is why it’s important to think about money before you walk down the aisle. After all, marriage should be a lifelong partnership based on love, understanding and mutual respect. Talking openly about money before you get married will allow you and your future spouse to have a clear understanding on what the other person feels is truly important when it comes to money.

Don’t be a team divided when it comes to money. Just be a team.

A great way to practice prudent spending habits before you get hitched can come in how you approach your wedding. Are you both on the same page in terms of what you are spending and how that money will be allocated?

You can find great bargains when it comes time to get married. Off-season weddings can save you significant money. Deciding how to finance your wedding gives you a chance to openly with your fiancée about money, budgeting and spending.

Talking about money can also mean planning for the future while dealing with the present. What are the priorities right now? What can you afford to save? Talk to each other about your short-term expenses and your long-term savings goals. Make sure you both share a clear vision of the future in terms of saving. Also talk about the fact that there may a need for some flexibility as situations arise, but stay true to your long-term goals. Your partner needs to share this vision as well.

Combining money and accounts is also a great way to save money and usually leads to lower bank and transaction fees. It’s all part of teamwork.

Staying Cool during a Summer Wedding

summer wedding

Summer is a great time to get married, but Mother Nature does have a tendency to turn up the heat.

Fear not, for you do not have to melt under the summer sun. It is possible to stay cool at a summer wedding.

It’s important to make the guests feel comfortable. If it is an outdoor ceremony, make sure all guests have bottled water and sunscreen. Everyone needs to drink plenty of water, especially children and older guests.

Ice. Make sure there is extra ice. That is all.

Be prepared. Get a handle on the weather forecast. Find out about humidity and the heat index forecast for the wedding day.

Timing is everything. An outdoor ceremony during the middle of the day in the summer might not be the best time to exchange those vows. See if you can schedule the outdoor ceremony for later in the afternoon or early in the evening. And don’t drag the ceremony out. This is not the type of service to have 11 readings by 14 different cousins. Keep it neat and brief and enjoy the natural beauty of an early evening in the summer. Added bonus: Think of the sunset pictures.

Think about ceremony location. Summer time is beach time. Think about holding those nuptials near the water or on a beach. It should be cooler. You can still hold an outdoor ceremony then take it inside for an indoor wedding reception. If you are holding an indoor wedding reception, check out the option of serving some summer-inspired cocktails.

Seasons at the Tradition wants you to have the perfect summer wedding ceremony. Our newly renovated banquet facility looks over the lush green wonder that is the Tradition Golf Club. You can also hold your outdoor summer ceremony on or terrace or on our gazebo.

Remember Those Wedding Details

wedding day checklist

There are a lot of things to remember on your wedding day. This means there are a lot of things you could forget.

Don’t despair. Just make a list a day or two before the big day. Go over it not once but twice.

Remember a hanger. The bride will want a hanger for her wedding dress as she gets ready for the ceremony later in the day. A hanger works much better than a plastic bag or even a dress bag. It’s also not a bad idea for the groom to have a hanger for his coat.
Tell guests about reserved seating. If there is going to be reserved seating, it’s nice to give family and friends a little heads-up before the ceremony.
Remember your marriage license. Obviously, this should happen before your actual wedding ceremony, so include it on the list so you don’t forget all about it.
Eat early in the day. You will be busy on your wedding day, so you probably won’t have time for a leisurely lunch. Or lunch at all. Eat breakfast in the morning so you start the morning with energy. You’ll need it.
Designate a flower gatherer. At the end of the wedding and the reception, people will be heading home or off to hotel rooms (some may be staggering to hotel rooms). The bride and groom will be, well, you know. It’s a good idea to ask for a volunteer or two to gather and store any flowers that are still around at the end of the evening.
Get cash. You made need quite a bit of it for tipping purposes. Do this at least a day in advance. Trust us. You do not want to worry about finding a cash machine on your wedding day.
Check in with your wedding coordinator. If you are holding your reception at a restaurant or banquet facility, you may assigned a coordinator who will assist you once you arrive on the premises.