Michele with Just Marry!

Weddings and everything surrounding them!

Something Exciting to Share Here at Just Marry!

First, let me start off this blog entry by apologizing for my absence from the wild world of blogging.  I have been focused on wrapping up a wedding for one of my favorite families, the Katta’s.  I first worked with them in 2007 when their daughter Sarah was married and this one was their son, Joe’s wedding.  I am a perfectionist and that led me to only being able to think, eat, dream and work on Katta.  The wedding was this past weekend and was amazingly beautiful.  I can’t wait to post my future blog, “The Tale of Two Weddings”, which will showcase both Sarah and Joe’s weddings.  So, keep an eye out for that.

Ok, on to the task at hand.  I’m so excited about this blog post because it includes two of my best friends, Susan and Kristy.  Here they are at a recent speaking engagement.

Here’s the recent press release including both Just Marry! and our lovely Kristy at Couture Consulting by Chenell.  Expect great things in the future from both companies.  I’m so glad to be a part of the bright future.

JUST MARRY! PARTNERS WITH COUTURE CONSULTING

Orlando, FL (October 3, 2008) – Just Marry! is pleased to announce it’s collaboration with wedding business consulting firm, Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC.  The partnership will grow the Just Marry! brand globally as well as develop innovative concepts and products for brides and grooms.

As new values emerge for couples tying the knot, a strong focus will be placed on each couple’s individual aspirations, preferences, and desires while staying sensitive to the ever changing market.   The two companies will join forces to create helpful resources (both services and products) made to inspire brides and grooms of their vision and to help them bring that vision to life within their spending parameters.

Couture Consulting will work with Just Marry! to cultivate its brand essence, rich with experience, fervor, and vision.   As a team, these companies anticipate expanding Just Marry!’s services, offices, and visibility internationally.

Founded by Susan Southerland in 1992, Just Marry! is the Southeast’s premier, full service wedding planning company.  Southerland and associate, Michele Butler, lead a passionate and experienced team that has coordinated thousands of weddings around the country and the world.  Focusing on destination, luxury, and cultural clientele, Just Marry! has offices in Orlando, Jacksonville, Savannah and St. Augustine.  Southerland shares her first hand experience with couples and industry peers alike in “Susan Southerland’s Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets” DVD.  In addition, Southerland and Butler recently released the anticipated “Susan Southerland’s Just Marry! 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry” DVD.  Just Marry! has been featured on the Style Network’s “Whose Wedding is it Anyway?” and TLC’s “A Wedding Story.” For additional information and to purchase resources, visit www.justmarry.com.

Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC is a consulting firm for wedding businesses created by Kristy Chenell, formerly of The Ritz-Carlton and Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings.  Based on the principles and standards of luxury services and products, Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC provides inspirational ideas, innovative concepts, and customized solutions for wedding businesses that desire to strengthen their brand and increase sales.   For additional information, please contact Kristy Chenell at (720) 425-3610.

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October 14, 2008 Posted by | 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry, blog, brides, Disney's Fairytale Weddings, DVD, event business, event industry, green, green products, Just Marry!, Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets, Katta & Smalberger wedding, Kristy Chenell, Michele Butler, Morales & Katta Wedding, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Ritz-Carlton, Susan Southerland, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding industry, wedding planner, wedding planning, Wedding planning DVD | Leave a comment

The Greening of the Wedding Industry

Yes, yet another trip. Jeffrey and I ventured to St. Petersburg a few weekends ago. It was all business of course. Easy to say when all of our friends are in the event business.

Our initial reason for going was for Jeffrey to video Susan and Kristy speaking at ISES Event World’s conference. However, we managed to see some of our great friends from our Denver excursion.  We went to dinner with Kristy & Scott Chenell (Kristy and I managed to have the very same dress on for this evening, by accident), Lisa Konecny, Ryan & Elena Joseph and Susan Southerland and her fella Scott. Zoe from Botanica made a great recommendation for dinner and even took care of making the reservation for us. We went to this wonderful restaurant in Tampa called Mise en Place. The food was amazing and we had such a great time catching up with friends who don’t live in Orlando.

After dinner that evening, we headed back to the Vinoy so that Kristy & Susan could finalize their presentation. I hung out with the fellas. Always one of my favorite things to do. Scott toured us around the property. He and Kristy were married there and it was fun to see where their ceremony and reception were. They were at beautiful outdoor venues. I wish I had known them then.

This hotel is quite historic and really reminds me of how the wealthy must have vacationed back in the 20’s and 30’s.  I love that lobby!

The next day, bright and early was Susan and Kristy’s presentation. It was all about the greening of the wedding industry. I really enjoyed listening to the many ideas that they suggested. Some of my favorites were,

Using evites for other events surrounding the wedding instead of more paper.

Giving cloth shopping bags as amenities or guest favors.

Having a no utensil event. This is something that Kristy is working on with her Chef from the Ritz-Carlton Denver for an upcoming event. I can only imagine the level of creativity that would go into brainstorming those ideas.

Giving a tree as a favor or amenity. The tree can then be planted in the city where the event is being held or can be taken back to the guests home and planted there.

Using Microsoft One Note or the backside of scratch paper to take notes.

Instead of providing your guests with disposable cameras, give them rented digital cameras. No waste!

Have your corporate group or wedding guests do something charitable in the area where they are. They could donate some time at a shelter or assist with building homes for those less fortunate.

This was a very informative presentation and Susan and Kristy are wonderful speakers. If you haven’t seen them speak, then don’t miss the opportunity.

We also premiered our 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry. This is a great DVD that gives those in the event industry many suggestions on how to green up their way of doing business and also give their clients green ideas for their event.  How great is that cover?  Thanks Amy Morelli for giving it a fresh and fun look.

Here’s some photos from the speaking engagement and such,

Don't they look famous?  Everybody wants their autographs.

Don't they look famous?

Ah, come here little sis.

Ah, come here little sis.

Definitely up to no good.

Definitely up to no good.

Our cute fellas

Our cute fellas

My dear friend Kristy

My dear friend Kristy

Not nervous at all

Not nervous at all

This says it all

This says it all

Richard with who??

Richard with who??

The speakers themselves

The speakers themselves

This excursion was such a green weekend of great information! I loved every minute. And something must have rubbed off on me. Jeffrey and I returned home to our previously flooded dining room (thank you Tropical Storm Fay), ripped up our carpet and headed to Home Depot to find replacement carpet. Guess what we chose? Green carpet made from corn fibers. And we didn’t find that the carpet was anymore expensive than comparable brands that weren’t made with green products. So, you don’t always have to pay extra to be green! I guess there goes the phrase, “It isn’t always easy being green”. Thanks Kermit!

September 4, 2008 Posted by | 2 U Collection, 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry, amenities, Amy Morelli, Botanica, ceremony site, cloth shopping bags, Decor, Denver, digital cameras, dinner party, disposable cameras, DVD, E Events, enviroment, event business, event industry, event venue, events, evite, favors, Flourish, Food and Beverage, green, green products, Hotel Property, Ian Prosser, ISES, ISES Event World's conference, Jeffrey Stoner, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Just Marry!, Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets, Kristy Chenell, Lisa Konecny, Menu, Michele Butler, Microsoft One Note, Mise en Place, Orlando wedding planner, out of the box idea, outdoor venue, photos, plant wedding favors, professional planners, Renaissance Vinoy, restaurant, Ritz-Carlton Denver, Ryan Joseph, Scott Chenell, Scott Mifsud, speaking engagement, special touches, Susan Southerland, Tampa, Vinoy, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding gift, wedding industry, wedding location, wedding night amenity, wedding party gift, wedding planner, wedding planning, Wedding planning DVD, wedding reception, wonderful world of weddings | Leave a comment

A Truly Meaningful Wedding – My Friends Art & Lana

Art & Lana

What can I say about them? They are perfectly matched for each other. This proving that it’s never too late to find true love. They did! And now they’re hitched, as of July 19th 2008. Congratulations my dear friends. Art being one of the people I’ve known the longest in the biz and Lana is part of our girls night group. The best friends a girl can have.

I was so lucky to be included as a guest at this intimate celebration. And of course I had to offer a bit of help. I know that my good friend Susie Weiss with Wonderful Weddings truly would have loved to help and to be there to see this couple get married. After all, Susie helped them get together. Unfortunately, Susie and Jeffrey already had a wedding that day at the lovely Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes. So, I did what I could to help make sure things were organized and was even smart enough to bring along some extra help in my talented associate, Sally Jarvis with Just Marry! With her there, I was able to relax and have fun at Art & Lana’s wedding.

They really made it their wedding. You could say that they put the Art & Lana stamp on it. Here are just a few of the special touches they chose to incorporate into their special day:

Keeping their event casual and intimate. Sun dresses for the ladies and guys in pants and casual tropical shirts. Not a suit to be found. And they only included their family and close friends. Which made it a truly love filled evening. Everybody celebrating Art & Lana and their marriage to each other.

Seeing each other before the ceremony to do some romantic pictures. This always helps to take some of the tension of the wedding day away.

Having the cocktail hour before the ceremony and having a specialty cocktail. A Mojito none the less. The perfect Florida cocktail for a hot day. Refreshing.

Including their dogs, Smitty and Nick in their ceremony and giving them lovely floral decor for their collars.

Including their grand-daughter and niece in the ceremony. The processional was beautiful with the girls and then Art & Lana being walked by the pups.

Writing their own vows. Now, I was already crying from seeing them off down the aisle, but all of us girls really turned on the water works when they read their personally written vows. It was so obvious to all of us how much they love and adore each other. This is one couple that will certainly stand the test of time. Precious.

The homemade limoncello that Art had been cultivating since December. It was included as a shot with the melon and prosciutto.

The surprise from Susie. She had hired the beautiful antique Rolls Royce owned by Larry Gerry for the departure. And they left to sparklers of course. Always the best pictures with those.

Here are some of the gorgeous photos shot by Art’s talented photography team,

Here’s some of our girls night group. Those of us who were able to attend. We missed you Bonnie, Faye & Jennifer. Pictured below from left to right are Susan Southerland from Just Marry!, myself, Janine Boylan from the Grand Bohemian Orlando Hotel, Lisa New with BBJ Linen, Stephanie Rounds of nu visions in photography, Lana and Lisa Konecny from E Events.

The happy couple!

Here’s some of Lana’s beautiful decor. You can visit her at Fairbanks Florist.

Such a silly couple

The vendors that assisted Art & Lana with their beautiful wedding were,

Ceremony & Reception site, Casa Feliz located in Winter Park

Family vacation rentals, Villas by Christi

Hair & Makeup, Kari Larsen with About Face

Bride’s Jewelry, Sandi Loychik

Officiant, Judge Rom Powell

Decor, Fairbanks Florist

Photography, Art Faulkner Photography courtesy of Neal Sands

Catering, Arthur’s Catering

Ceremony Music, J.R. Krisanda

Reception Music, Danny with Power Entertainment

Transportation, Larry Gerry with Classic Rolls Royce

Honeymoon Location, Grand Bohemian Orlando by Janine Boylan

August 10, 2008 Posted by | About Face, animals, Art Faulkner, blog, Bonnie Garfield, Casa Feliz, Classic Rolls Royce, Deb Kettler, Decor, E Events, event venue, Fairbanks Florist, Faye Novick, Food and Beverage, girls night group, Grand Bohemian Hotel Orlando, Grande Lakes, groom, J.R. Krisanda, Janine Boylan, Jeffrey Stoner, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Judge Rom Powell, July, Just Marry!, Kari Larsen, Lana Pelham, Larry Gerry, Lisa Konecny, Lisa New, Live Entertainment, Michele Butler, Neal Sands, nu visions in photography, Off premise catering location, Orlando wedding planner, Pelham & Faulkner, pet, photograph, photographer, photography, photos, professional planners, refreshing beverage, rehearsal dinner location, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Sally Jarvis, Scott Mifsud, sparklers, special touches, Special Touches by Deb, Stephanie Rounds, Susan Southerland, Susie Weiss, vendor, vows, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding industry, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding reception, Wonderful Weddings | 2 Comments

A trip to Denver & Bachelor Gulch

I’m getting so excited and just wanted to share with all of you. Jeffrey and I leave today to head out to Denver for a week. I’m on vacation, relaxing and enjoying myself. My Jeffrey has to work some. He is shooting some video for the Ritz-Carlton in Denver and then also participating in another Down the Aisle Wedding Show with one of our best friends Lisa Konecny from E-Events. Lisa did this show at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes last year and now she’s taking it national. I’m so excited for her. Austin Scarlett from Season 1 of Project Runway will also return for this show.

After the show, Jeffrey and our good friends Scott and Kristy Chenell are heading off to the Ritz-Carlton in Bachelor Gulch. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this property, it is located near the Beaver Creek and Vail resorts. It’s very near to where I love to ski in Beaver Creek. It will be so weird to be up in the mountains with no snow, but we plan to enjoy the outdoors by horseback riding and hiking. We will return for the next ski season, so that Jeffrey can finally try his hand at skiing or snowboarding.

I’m so looking forward to to this trip and the fact that I’m not working! As some of you may know, Susan from Just Marry! is currently in Italy coordinating a wedding along with two of our other best friends from nu visions in photography, Curt and Stephanie. So, it will be nice to get away, because I’m dying that I’m not in Italy. Jeff and I love Italy and can’t wait to go back. Our favorite city is Venice!

Hope everybody had a fab & fun 4th of July! I’ll be back in touch when I return to the office on Tuesday, July 15th.

July 7, 2008 Posted by | Austin Scarlett, Beaver Creek Resort, bridal show, Curt Littlecot, Denver, Down the Aisle, E Events, event venue, Grande Lakes, Italy, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Just Marry!, Kristy Chenell, Lisa Konecny, Michele Butler, nu visions in photography, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Project Runway, Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch, Ritz-Carlton Denver, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Skiing, Stephanie Rounds, Susan Southerland, vacation, Vail, Venice, video, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding show | 1 Comment

WESH A List Nominated for 2008

Hi all!

Last year my favorite Orlando TV station, WESH (NBC) started their A-List and Just Marry! was nominated and ranked in the top 5 wedding planners when it was all said and done. You really should check it out. You can vote on everything from weddings to restaurants. It’s lots of fun and one of my favorite restaurants, Stefano’s won for best Italian last year. And my fabulous videographer fella, Jeffrey is also nominated as well.

Just wanted to share!

masthead banner 2008.jpeg

June 23, 2008 Posted by | Jeffrey Stoner Video, Just Marry!, Michele Butler, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Stefano's Trattoria, Susan Southerland, Uncategorized, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding planner, wedding planning, WESH | Leave a comment

WD40

That was the name of the game at Warren Dietel’s birthday party, just last night. Still moving a little slow today. But, it was well worth it.

This was an important birthday for our cool friend Warren. The big 40! Warren Dietel is the owner of Puff n Stuff Catering here in Orlando. Truly one of the top caterers in the area. Warren certainly had lots of friends at his shin dig. There must have been over 200. Now, that’s a party.

It was an 80’s theme and most everybody dressed the part. I grew up in the 80’s and there is no doubt in my mind that we all looked ridiculous last night and in the 80’s. I just can’t believe that brightly colored, mis matched clothes, jelly shoes, lace with anything and parachute pants were ever really in style. Wow!

This party was definitely one of those parties that you wouldn’t want to miss and was held at the historic Ballroom at Church Street Station. Complete with amazing lighting, glowing furniture, dancers and video games that we all remember. I loved Galaga and had such a great time playing it last night. I was immediately transported back to when I was 9! The dancers and entertainment were amazing and even had my Jeffrey up on the stage at one point. Hillarious!

Oh and the food. Well, what would you expect from an amazing catering company? Great food!! They had a risotto station with choose your own toppings, a Caesar salad station, an antipasto station, RAW BAR (yummy oysters) and a carving station with great flavored meats.

As the party began to wear down, we were invited into another area for dessert, breakfast and some 80’s Guitar Hero. Fun! The ice cream was the coolest. It was frozen using liquid nitrogen. Quite an impressive process. To top it all off, the after hours area was called Ronnie’s after an old Orlando diner that has been closed for year, but obviously not forgotten.

We were so excited to be included on the guest list of this fab party for our friend Warren! Happy Birthday Warren. They say that 40 is the new 30!! Let me know.

Here’s our very 80’s photo from the night and you can view a slide show of the party at

www.stonervideo.blogspot.com

Us before we headed out to Warren\'s 80\'s Theme B\'day Party!

June 22, 2008 Posted by | event industry, event venue, Jeffrey Stoner Video, John Unrue, Just Marry!, Lighting, Live Entertainment, Menu, Michele Butler, networking function, Off premise catering location, professional planners, Puff n Stuff Catering, Scott Mifsud, Susan Southerland, Uncategorized, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding industry, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wonderful world of weddings | Leave a comment

News in the Orlando Sentinel about our wedding planning DVD

Exciting news to share. Our new wedding planning DVD was featured in today’s Orlando Sentinel with the following Q&A with Fashion Editor, Jean Patteson,

Question: My stepdaughter will be married in September and has asked me to work with her on planning the wedding. I feel honored, of course, but also terrified. I have no idea where to begin — and she doesn’t either. Can you help?

Answer: There are loads of wedding how-to books, but reading is a solitary business. A wedding-planning DVD, on the other hand, is something you and your step-daughter can watch together, pausing whenever you want to discuss a point or make notes. And if there are tips and ideas you’d like to share with the groom and/or father-of-the-bride, all you need do is hit “rewind” and “play.”

Believe me, it is easier to get most men to watch a DVD than read a bridal magazine.

One of the best DVDs I’ve viewed is JustMarry!: Wedding Planning Secrets by Orlando wedding planner Susan Southerland. She covers everything from selecting a gown, invitations and venue, to working with vendors — photographers, musicians, bakers, caterers and more. Packed with no-nonsense tips for saving time, money and stress, the DVD is aimed at both do-it-yourself brides and those working with professional planners.

Southerland, a 20-year veteran of the wedding-planning and travel industries, and a member of the Association of Bridal Consultants, is founder and president of Just Marry! She has helped plan more than 5,000 weddings and appeared on the Style Network’s Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? and The Learning Channel’s Wedding Story.

The 68-minute DVD costs $29.95, and can be ordered at justmarry.com.

Jean Patteson

Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets

April 24, 2008 Posted by | bridal magazine, Do it yourself, Fashion editor, father of the bride, groom, how to books, Jean Patteson, Just Marry!, Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets, Orlando Sentinel, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Susan Southerland, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding industry, wedding planner, wedding planning, Wedding planning DVD, wonderful world of weddings | Leave a comment

Impress, Indulge, Inspire at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes

It was an honor for Just Marry! to participate in the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes most recent wedding show. This show had the top planners and decor designers in the area featured. The planners involved were Susie Weiss with Wonderful Weddings and Lisa Konecny with E Events. And truly the creme de la creme of the floral designers in Orlando, Lee Forrest Design, Greenery Productions, Lee James of Grande Lakes Floral, Raining Roses, Flourish and Botanica.

The evening began with couples networking with some of the Ritz’s preferred vendors, Damon Tucci, John Unrue, Jeffrey Stoner and nu visions. Beautiful Music played some lovely background music during this meet and greet time. We planners and floral designers were in the ballroom putting the finishing touches to the tables. Each planner was able to do at least 3 guest tables. Just Marry! chose to do 4. We have to thank Lee Forrest for providing the beautiful decor and design ideas. It was great fun working with him. He is extremely talented. BBJ Linen provided us with the beautiful linens (table linens, napkins, chair pads) and PKS Rental provided us with the mahogany, black and white chiavari chairs that helped to finish off our tables. Our fourth table was added a bit later in the game and Stephanie Rounds with nu visions in photography suggested that we use some glass sculptures from Keila Glassworks located in the City Arts Factory in downtown Orlando. This made for a clean, modern look for our final table. Once all of the table designs were complete, the doors to the ballroom were opened and the guests entered and visited the various table designs before finding their designated spot at the beautiful tables. We had an amazing meal. Following was the official menu of the evening,

Appetizer

Duo of Dumpling Squash

Ravioli with Nutmeg Froth and Bisque with Vanilla Cream

&

Gulf Coast Crab Gnocchi

Fiddlehead Ferns and Corn

Basil Foam

Salad

Layers of Baby Greens

Pumpkin and Chevre Cheese Cake

Cranberry Orange Vinaigrette

Gingerbread Tuile

&

Layers of Baby Greens

Gorgonzola Wellington, Spicy Walnuts

Strawberry Rhubarb Vinaigrette

Entrée

Grilled Filet Mignon

Potato and Celery Root Puree

Spaghetti Squash, Jumbo Asparagus

Red Wine Jus

&

Cashew Crusted Halibut “Summer Roll”

Purple Thai Rice, Enoki Mushrooms

Preserved Ginger and Green Tea Broth

Dessert

Chef to Prepare

Chocolate Tart with Burnt Marshmallow

Flambéed Bananas, Espresso Ice Cream

&

Chef to Prepare

Lemon Curd Crepes

Grand Marnier Strawberries

Coconut Sorbet

All I can say is yummy! I’m such a foodie and this was so delicious. I especially loved the fiddlehead ferns. The dinner courses were also paired with some wonderful wines. Starting with one of Susan’s and my favorite wines, Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc. It really was a treat for anybody invited to the show as Arthur Murray Dance Studio performed to the wonderful stylings of the Ricky Sylvia with the Buzzcatz. This band is truly one of the best around! The evening ended with the couples being able to chat with the various A-1 vendors in attendance and enjoy some delectable desserts and after dinner drinks. It is always a pleasure to do a wedding at the Ritz-Carlton. Truly one of my favorite venues in the city! Following please see our table top displays, provided by our amazing sponsors. Thank you again to Lee Forrest! A true artistic talent. The following images were provided by Damon Tucci where noted and nu visions in photography. Thanks guys for the beautiful images.

Rhapsody Table by Damon Tucci

Fragile Masterpiece table by nu visions

April 2, 2008 Posted by | BBJ Linen, Beautiful Music, bridal show, Buzzcatz, City Arts Factory, Damon Tucci, Decor, E Events, Flourish, Food and Beverage, Grande Lakes, Grande Lakes Floral, Greenery Productions, Hotel Property, Jeffrey Stoner Video, John Unrue, Just Marry!, Keila Glassworks, Lee Forrest Design, Lee James Designs, Lighting, Linens, Menu, nu visions in photography, PKS Rental, Raining Roses, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Susan Southerland, Table Settings, wedding, wedding planning, wedding show, Wonderful Weddings | 1 Comment

A Casual Get Together at the Stoner/Butler Household

I really love what I do and the people I get to work with. So much so, that most of my dear friends are in the wedding or event industry. It’s great that way, as we can all relate to the in’s and out’s. Jeff and I had some of our nearest and dearest friends over for a potluck dinner party this past Friday. We made the entrée and had plenty of cocktails. Our friends helped round out the dinner. We had so much food! Bad planning on the planners part. But, you can’t argue with having leftovers and they were so yummy. Our dinner party invite list consisted of Susan Southerland and her fella Scott Mifsud. Susan is the owner of Just Marry! and also one of my best friends. Bonnie Garfield who is the director of catering at the Portofino Bay Hotel and her other half, Howard King. Lisa Konecny who owns her own wonderful wedding planning company, E Events and her handsome half, Marc Konecny. And finally, Jennifer Sharpe who is the sales manager at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes and her fun husband Joe. We even celebrated his birthday with a wedding sparkler on top of a birthday cake. I hope the guys managed to have a great time. Scott and my fella, Jeffrey Stoner are both in the events industry, but I can only imagine what it must be like for the rest of the guys. They are not. We in the wedding biz have been known to get together and yap about weddings endlessly. In fact, this get together was not without lots of that. Susan even debuted her new DVD. A quick tour of it actually. It looks wonderful and will be sold on Amazon. And there are more to come. I’m so excited to be involved in future DVD projects.

February 2, 2008 Posted by | Amazon, dinner party, DVD, E Events, event industry, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Joe Sharpe, Just Marry!, Marc Konecny, Portofino Bay Hotel, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Scott Mifsud, sparklers, Susan Southerland, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding industry, wedding planner | Leave a comment

Catering Manager/Coordinator Happy Hour

Graze Dining Area

I recently organized a really fun get together of wedding coordinators. We met a few times. First at Luma and then at Il Mulino at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort. It was great and we were all able to talk shop. It then occurred to me that it would be a great idea to include the catering managers from the various hotels, country clubs and off premise caterers. We had our first coordinator/catering manager meeting at Graze in downtown Orlando. It was great fun. Very casual get together with drinks and food. Catering managers and wedding coordinators often work very close together. Wedding coordinators are sometimes seen as an extension of the hotel properties. Making a great team. So, it only seemed appropriate to have the entire group together. Attending at the initial group get together were Bonnie Garfield (Portofino Bay Hotel), Janine Boylan (Grand Bohemian Orlando), Christal Knowles-Feldman (Sunsational Weddings), Susan Southerland (Just Marry!), Aimee Sers (Just Marry!), Andrea Hall (Just Marry!), Susan Pelteson (Distinctive Weddings), Jenny (Doubletree Castle Hotel), Linda Helm (Heathrow Country Club), Jessica Lodispoto (Winter Park Racquet Club), Lisa Konecny (E Events), Stephanie Rounds (Nu Visions in Photography). We had a great time. The food was great, if not expensive and the drinks were extra yummy. We in the wedding industry love a good cocktail or glass of wine. Allows us to keep that smile on our faces in even the most stressful moments. One thing I can say about the restaurant, is that they are certainly lacking in service. It was a bad time to be lacking in that area as we all have big mouths and can be a source of future referrals. Regardless, we all made the best of it and just let our tips reflect any downfall in service.

January 30, 2008 Posted by | Aimee Sers, Andrea Hall, Bonnie Garfield, catering managers, Christal Knowles-Feldman, country clubs, Distinctive Weddings, Doubletree Castle Hotel, E Events, event industry, event venue, Food and Beverage, Graze, Heathrow Country Club, Jessica Lodispoto, Just Marry!, Lisa Konecny, ll Mulino at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort, Luma, Michele Butler, networking function, nu visions in photography, Stephanie Rounds, Sunsational Weddings, Susan Southerland, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding industry, wedding planner, Winter Park Racquet Club | Leave a comment