How to Choose the Right Reception Venue

Choosing your reception venue is one of the highlights of planning a wedding. As you begin your search for the perfect spot, take this list of factors and consider which location satisfies the “must-haves.” With some careful searching and deliberation, you will find the place best suited for you.

Does it fall in your budget? It is best to discover your reception venue after completing a detailed budget. Venues vary in price and will undoubtably take a large portion of your finances. If you select a venue at a high price point, be sure you leave room for food and beverages along with music and the rest. Many locations require a deposit and commitment to hold your day of choice so make sure you have estimated the cost for other vendors before you sign on the dotted line.

Is the setting right? When you walk in a space, can you picture your wedding celebration there? Do you have an automatic feeling of comfort and happiness, or do you feel uncomfortable and on edge? Pay attention to the energy of the room and see if it suits your personality.

Prior to checking out a location be sure it checks your must-have boxes. If you always dreamed of an outdoor wedding, don’t commit to an indoor reception hall simply because the price is right or you like their menu. Imagine your perfect day and narrow down locations that fit the scenery you’ve always dreamed of. A gorgeous view can be your best backdrop and help to make a reception unforgettable.

Do they cater? Food is essential at a wedding reception. If you want a venue that serves food, narrow your search to only those with an in-house caterer. If your place of choice does not handle this in-house, make sure they will work with outside vendors or even provide recommendations for preferred merchants.

Will it suit your guest list? Be sure that the venue you select will comfortably hold the number of guests you plan to invite. With that in mind, verify there is also plenty of space for toasting, dancing, food and evacuation in case of an emergency.

Is there ample parking? Unless you have valet help, it is imperative to find a location that allows your guest to easily join and exit your reception. Make sure they do not have to walk too far…especially when they are dolled up for your celebration. If you find a place where parking is a concern, plan for a shuttle to run through the night and assist your guest to a parking area close by.

Holiday Festivals in and around Richmond. Virginia

There are so many wonderful holiday festivals happening this season! We’ve compiled a list in case you want to check them out.

Richmond
• December 4-7—The Bizarre Bazaar
Open 10am-7pm Thursday through Saturday and 10am-5pm on Sunday, the Bizarre Bazaar is a holiday marketplace with over 500 exhibitors and fabulous, unique gifts for everyone on your Christmas list. General admission is $7 and children 2-12 get in for $1.50.
• December 5—Grand Illumination
This free downtown tradition kicks off the holidays with the lighting of millions of lights along the city skyline, followed by a festival featuring Santa and the Snow Queen.
• December 12—Church Hill Holiday Candlelight Walk
This 50th Anniversary Holiday Festival at Church Hill starts at 7:15pm in Jefferson Park and concludes at historic Libby Hill at 7:45pm. The event features holiday caroling and a visit from Santa Claus, and is free and open to all!

Henrico
• December 13—James River Parade of Lights
In the 22nd Annual Parade of Lights, boats decorated with thousands of lights will cruise roughly a dozen miles down the James River from the fall line in Richmond to the Varina-Enon Bridge. You can register to decorate your boat and participate, or simply watch the festive vessels from several official viewing locations.
• December 14—Easter Henrico Holiday Extravaganza
The holiday celebrations at The Armour House and Dabbs House, include decorations, refreshments, craft activities, holiday songs by local chorus groups, Santa, and even a step back in time at the Dabbs House Museum.

Petersburg
• December 7—Hopewell Tree Lighting, Parade & Concert
Just a skip away from Petersburg, Hopewell has their annual tree lighting at the Ashford Civic Plaza. From 4-8pm, visitors can also enjoy a parade, free concert, horse & carriage rides, carnival rides, raffles, and refreshments. There will also be a visit from Santa!

What fun festivals are part of your holiday traditions?

Smart Tips for Planning a Fabulous Outdoor Party

At Edmunds Waste Removal, we hope to be more than just the restroom trailer providers for your event. No matter what kind of celebration you’re throwing, we want to help you plan it perfectly! Here are five tips for planning your fabulous outdoor party:

• Don’t limit your venue. Outdoor parties are a great opportunity to be really creative with your venue, so don’t feel like you have to limit your event to just a lawn or backyard. Historic sites, woodland areas, and city spaces are all options as well. Let your imagination run wild, but just check to see if the venue you want requires any permits for outdoor events.

• Keep everyone informed! Having an outdoor party in summer? Tell your guests if there will be any opportunities to be indoors in case of rain or a major heat wave. Let people know what time food will be served for longer events.

• Let it shine. Don’t forget the lights at your outdoor party. Elegant string lights can give off a fun ambience and help your guests’ eyes adjust as the night progresses.

• Don’t forget the seating! Especially for outdoor parties, it’s important to make sure guests who want the option of sitting down can do so. For more casual outdoor events, pretty blankets and quilts can allow people to gather, picnic-style.

• Master your music. Too loud, and guests will avoid the speakers; too soft, and no one can hear the music. For the best musical setup, try four or more speakers set at a lower volume and spread across the space. You can’t go wrong with upbeat classics, but throw in newer favorites as well. Ideally, plan for five hours of music so that tracks aren’t repeated over and over.

Don’t forget the luxury restroom trailers so that you’ve got all the amenities you could need at your event space. What tips to you use for throwing a fabulous outdoor party? Tell us in the comments.

The Details (including Restroom Trailers) Can Make or Break Your Event

Whatever kind of outdoor event you are planning, take considerable time and effort in planning all the important details.

Here are some helpful tips for making your next outdoor gathering a huge success:

Balance creativity and sensitivity.

People tend to think of outdoor events on sprawling lawns or backyards, but you can also plan the perfect outdoor event at local historic sites, forest locales, and city parks. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination; just check to see if your ideal outdoor event location requires permits.

What great outdoor event doesn’t have food? Consider convenient snacks and finger foods that can be eaten without too much mess or utensils. Hors d’oeuvres, fresh vegetables, and stuffed savory or sweet pastries are delicious, and can be catered and consumed easily.

Don’t forget the amenities!

If you’re having an outdoor event, it’s important to think about lighting (for longer/evening events), trash, and toilets. Solar lamps are a great way to extend a daytime party for a few more hours without tripping over power cords, and can be easily found in home improvement stores. Trash receptacles are often overlooked but important to any outdoor event and, if your venue doesn’t provide them, it’s important to make sure you have enough bins to handle your party’s litter.

Last, but not least, consider what kind of restroom facilities your venue has, and when/where they are available. For many outdoor locations, bringing in luxury restroom trailers may be the easiest, most comfortable fit for your event and your guests. (click here to learn more about portable restroom trailers)

You want your guests to feel important and taken care of. Providing luxury right down to the restroom toilets can make your event one everyone will remember.

Preparing for the Perfect Outdoor Wedding

 

Outdoor weddings are a picturesque way to take advantage of the season and infuse your wedding with some non-traditional elements. There are different concerns you’ll need to keep in mind about having your ceremony and/or reception outside. Use these tips, rules, and general guidelines to ensure that your outdoor wedding is everything you imagined it would be:

 

Comfort is key.
Make sure you and your guests are comfortable in an outdoor venue. Depending on the season, this may mean providing fans or outdoor heating, refreshing or warming beverages.

 

Researching these aspects early on in venue planning can help you determine if amenities are offered at your proposed venue and, if they are not, then you can obtain them in plenty of time. Another nice touch is to make sure that there’s at least one well-lit path to the bathrooms, whether they are located inside a building or a temporary restroom trailer.

 

Check the Rules.
Check to see what kinds of rules and/or permits you may need to obtain in order to get married or host a reception at an outdoor venue. Tying the knot at a picturesque park, beach, or mountaintop is wonderful, and complying with any regulations or paperwork before the date helps ensure that your day runs smoothly.

 

Here comes the sun.

Talk to your photographer and/or videographer about lighting. Consider how and where the sun will hit when planning the ceremony and seating arrangements so Aunt Margaret doesn’t go blind from the sunset.

 

Also consider how the natural lighting will affect your wedding photography; you may decide you want to plan taking wedding pictures on a different day entirely, or you might ask your photographer to bring lighting equipment. Foresight regarding lighting can be useful with the festivities and the behind-the-scenes photography.

 

Provide weather accessories for your guests.
Pretty baskets filled with items such as parasols, paper fans, and pashminas can help guests deal with the elements. Not only is it a thoughtful gesture to take care of your loved ones, but the coordinated accessories will contribute to the ambience of your day and the pictures commemorating it.

 

Windproof (and waterproof) your decor.
Make sure that all your décor can withstand a strong breeze, as wind is a possibility in most places. If you’re planning an outdoor wedding and reception, consider having a back-up plan or a tent in case of precipitation.

 

Find an expert.
When in doubt, find an expert! If an outdoor venue does weddings regularly, they are likely to either cover details such as furniture and tents, or they’ll be able to offer advice on the best practices for weddings.

 

Prepare your guests with details.
A wedding website is the perfect place to include details about your wedding so that guests can plan accordingly. You can include a photo of the venue, a weather prediction, advice regarding footwear, and information about any worst-case scenario plans you may have.

 

Barring a website, including this in invitations is a thoughtful way to inform all your guests while reducing the number of urgent questions you receive in the week leading up to your wedding.

 

Your outdoor wedding adds another layer of personality to your special day – it can be adventurous or serene, wild or carefully cultivated. The options are limitless, and it’s entirely up to you!