Cannabis and Alcohol

We all knew it was going to happen sooner or later.  In the past we have had guests that consumed a bit too much alcohol and as a result we have seen fights break out, people sent to the hospital in ambulances, a groom miss most of the reception (bachelor party the night before), and even one newlywed couple yelling at each other about getting their marriage annulled 2/3 of the way into the reception.  No doubt about it alcohol can seriously mess up your wedding day or party.

In Colorado we now have cannabis aka marijuana available  either to smoke or eat.  Many planners have said they are seeing a huge increase in cannabis/alcohol consumption that are turning a fun event into medical emergencies.  Many out-of-state folks have no idea how much cannabis is safe and are consuming too much.

One planner had a bride spend five hours in the hospital before the doctors were able to adequately treat her.  She had refused to admit that she had mixed cannabis and alcohol together.

When planning your next party or wedding please give careful consideration as to whether or not you want to encourage cannabis use and what measures you can take to deal with any issues that may arise as a result.

Just for the Record

Just For The Record…..
The resurgence of vinyl. That’s right. The record is making a comeback. Visit your Barnes and Noble store or other music outlet and find new re-mastered pressings of classic albums from some of your favorite artists, old and new. Beatles, Pink Floyd, Green Day and more. Don’t expect them to be 1977 prices though. Back when Dark Side of the Moon was originally released I believe I paid $12.99. Today you can purchase a 180 gram pressing for around $40. A word of caution though…..don’t waste your money on the Crosley turntable that they also sell. It’s cheap! Go to your local Goodwill store or other second hand shop and get a “real” record player and make sure the “needle” stylus is in good shape. Radio Shack still carries replacements if you want to be sure yours isn’t worn out. You WILL notice a difference. For those too young to remember records, they were “warm” sounding and full of life. Peter Framptons “Frampton Comes Alive” just sounds better on an album opposed to the CD. CD’s were just “sterile”. Sometimes technology just gets too perfect for its own good. No Wow or Flutter, No Rumble or surface noise, Too good of a Signal to Noise ratio and channel separation. Granted, you wouldn’t enjoy Led Zeppelins “Houses of the Holy” that was abused as if it were used as a Frizbee but a good clean copy of The Best of the Stones will sound amazing. But Hey!!! Maybe it’s just me.
Happy listening until next time.

What guests hate about your event

I recently read an article regarding the top 10 complaints your guests make about your event.  It was actually 12 complaints and somewhat difficult to read.So I thought I would share my observations based on what I have seen and heard.  This is part 1.

#1 – Inconvenient Date – because people don’t want to attend your event on Super Bowl Sunday or during the Christmas holiday week.

There is no perfect date.  If your event or wedding is local you do run a good chance that people may have other plans and not want to change them.  Holidays can be bad or good if you are having a destination wedding.  Bad because getting an airline seat may be tough and expensive.  Good because the family and friends can take a week and actually vacation in the area of your wedding.

It is pretty easy to figure out when Super Bowl Sunday is going to be so you can avoid that.  However, we had a wedding date the couple selected a year before the hockey playoffs.  When planning they had no way of knowing that the local team would be playing game seven of the Stanley Cup on their wedding day.  This holds true for non-wedding events as well.

Accept that some of your guests may be excited about a sporting event happening on your wedding day and make arrangements to take that into consideration for the festivities.

#2 – Invitation Confusion – Who is being invited?  Just me?  Me plus One?  Me, spouse, and the kids?  No kids?

In my opinion, for what it is worth, when people are confused it is because they do not understand proper etiquette.  If the invitation is addressed to Sally Smith and guest, then it is obviously Me plus One.  If it is only to Sally then only Sally is invited.  To Sally Smith and Family then the kids and spouse are included. 

However, to make it easier for all concerned you could list each person and have a check yes or no for each person.  Seriously, a right royal pain but it would make things clear. 

#3 – Seating Snafus – Oh God, I’m seated next to someone I don’t like.

This is the stuff nightmares are made of.  You could just let people sit wherever they like but then you run the risk of having a couple who have to sit at separate tables because the only seating left was one seat at table A and one seat at table B.

     In over 25 years in the business I have found that letting people fend for themselves works out fairly well.  Just have reserved seating for the immediate  special guests.  Make sure those people know in advance where their table is.  Use a floor plan if you have to.

#3.5 – Unfriendly Centerpieces – I can’t see the people across the table from me because of the centerpiece.

    Agreed.  Keep the centerpieces short enough for guests to be able to carry on conversations.  Besides your guests are here to enjoy the event, not gush over ultra fancy flowers, candles or what-have-you.

#4 – Cash Bars – I was invited, why should I have to pay to drink?

Weddings, anniversaries, and private parties have more of an issue with this than other types of events.  And the guests do have a valid point.  If you cannot afford an open bar you can be alcohol free, host beer and wine, or have a signature drink in order to keep costs down.  You could also cut your guest list a little if necessary.  By the way, don’t forget those of us who don’t drink alcohol.  Consider hosting soda, lemonade, and ice tea.  Always, always have plenty of water, especially if it is a hot day or at altitude.

#5 – Weather for outdoor events – Too hot, too cold.

     Let’s face it, sometimes you get lucky and the weather is perfect.  Other times you can’t win.  Be a good Boy Scout and be prepared.  Too hot?  Have lots and lots and lots of water available.  Umbrellas are nice too for shade.  If there is no way to avoid having your guests sitting in the sun do not seat them until just immediately before everything starts.

     Too cold, get heaters.  Let guests stay inside until the last minute.  Seriously consider in advance having a tent on call or moving the event to an inside location.  If your guests are chilled they will be miserable, leave early, and have poor memories of your event.

     Special note for brides – I observed a wedding where everyone except the photographer tried to convince the bride to move the wedding inside.  The seats already had four inches of snow on them and the snow was still coming down.  Her bridesmaids had strapless dresses and stilletto heels on a grass surface.  She insisted on having the wedding outside. The bride herself had a stole so she was toasty warm.  She would not let her mother or mother-in-law to be wear coats because she wanted everyone to see their dresses.  A ceremony that was scheduled to be 30 minutes long was actually only eight minutes.  The pastor told the DJ that the redder the bridesmaids shoulders got the shorter the ceremony became.  I always wondered what the groom thought of a woman who would subject her friends and family to such poor conditions just so she could have awesome photographs.  Special note # 2, if you are this kind of bride, please do not call McKinney Entertainment.  Our equipment doesn’t like snow either.  🙂

Terha and Jay’s Wedding

When Terha first met with me she explained that she wanted a 1920’s themed wedding; but, not a flapper wedding. The ceremony would be at 11:00AM and the reception immediately following. Because it was an afternoon event she wasn’t sure how much people would dance so she wanted some games that her guests could participate in and enjoy.

One of the ideas I had for a game was a version of Pin the Tail on the Donkey. The only two people actually doing the game would be Terha and Jay but I thought the guests would get a real hoot out of it. I was right! I created pictures of Terha in her dress and Jay in a suit. All Jay had to do with pin a bouquet to Terha and she had to pin a Bow Tie on him. You can look at the picture to see how well she did.

Website Pin the tie on the groom.

Instead of a regular cake, Terha had cupcakes. We kept them in a back room until time to deliver the cupcakes to the guests. Terha’s friends, Shannon, Julia, Coral, Lolly, Dixie, Michelle, Lisa, and Donna served trays of cupcakes to the guests while entering the room to the strains of “Be Our Guest” from Beauty and the Beast.

I am delighted to say that Terha and I have become more than vender/client. We have become friends. Which I am sure The Next Door Restaurant and Generations Martini Bar both appreciate because we love meeting and enjoying their bacon wrapped dates.

Oh, did I mention that we only played two games. Scott was rocking the house with great music and the guests were loving it. They danced until the venue kicked us out.

Using old frames for wedding photos
Many photographers use old frames for photos after the wedding. Do something fun and frame the wedding itself.

Many thanks to the ladies at Pelican Lakes for the awesome wedding ceremony site, Emily Moon Photography, and Susan at Something Borrowed for the fabulous decor items.

Wedding ceremony location in Windsor CO - Pelican Lakes #windsorwedding
The happy bride and groom right after the ceremony.

American Disc Jockey Association

Music For 6-1-2014

New Music review 6-1-2014

One new song that is being played for first dances is called “All of Me” by John Legend (With a remix featuring Lindsey Sterling) It’s a very nice tune and well worth checking out.

Hot from the Dance/Club scene is a song called “Turn Down for What” by DJ Snake and l’il Jon. Very catchy.

For you Country fans, Luke Bryan’s “Play it Again” is a good mid tempo song that will get you swingin’ ‘cross the dancefloor.

For an easy Alternative genre song…A Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay has a nice sound and is being received well.

“Happy” by Pharrell Williams still continues to be the hot song of the summer.

More later…

Music Review – 50 Shades of Music

Hello, Scott here again. Today I’m reviewing Now That’s What I Call Music 50. Yes….they are up to number 50 since the “Now” series was started. For those not familiar, the Now series is a collection of hot top 40 songs that are popular and receive a lot of airplay nationwide and through download services. This time out the hit song Happy from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack has the top spot. If you haven’t heard this yet….Where have you been? You can’t seem to turn around without hearing it on awards shows, late night comedy or other spoofs. It’s a catchy little tune that is easy to dance to and will be around for a while unless it gets played to death.

Other songs include Talk Dirty and Turn Down for What with a rap/hip hop vibe. Remember the 80’s Valley Girl? (Gag me with a spoon fer sure) #SELFIE (pronounced hashtagselfie for twitter speak) is a complete throwback to the 80’s Valley Girls.

All of Me by John Legend will be a good love song for Weddings and Proms.

A little more progressive but still catchy is a song called Best Day of My Life by American Authors.

For those in the Country crowd…(not on Now 50)

George Strait has a new song called I Got A Car that I feel will get quite a few requests. Good slow country love song. It’s off his Love is Everything album. Off this album Diana likes I Thought I Heard My Heart Sing and Sittin On a Fence.

Another fun country song making a bit of a comeback (2006) is Bomshel’s song Bomshel Stomp. Fun line-dance song for those that can’t get enough of fun line dances.

Be sure to keep checking in for more music reviews.

Budgets – Your Reserve

Wow, budgets are the hardest part of planning your wedding. If you’ve never done a big event before you probably have no idea how much things are going to cost. You do probably have an idea of how much you have available to spend.

Take the number available to spend and immediately subtract 15%. This 15% is your reserve. A late spring thaw might cause your $50 bouquet to suddenly cost $60. An explosion at an oil refinery could adversely affect the cost of gas which could negatively affect all your vendors, some of whom may pass the cost on to you. So keep that 15% set aside. If you end up not spending it you now have a small nest egg to start your retirement fund, begin a down payment on a house, plan for a baby or start your three to six month living expenses emergency fund if you don’t already have one.

Now it’s time to start laying out the rest of your budget. Do your research by checking out websites and magazines to find out what people are spending on which services. But keep in mind that costs in one part of the country may be different than another part. And you may want to spend a higher percentage of your budget on photography and less on food than the average or you may want to spend more on the entertainment and less on decor.

candle centerpieces
Where do you want to spend your hard earned money?

Remember to think about what is important to you and allocate your money appropriately. Also, think about what you and your guests will remember about your wedding day ten years from now. If your budget is tight ask yourself this question:  Will my guests and I remember that I painstakingly spent hours wrapping up five Jordan almonds in netting and tied them with a pretty bow for favors? Or that I spent $7.00 a piece to rent pretty bows that go on the backside of my chairs during dinner? Money is money and time is money too when it comes to putting your wedding together. Which products or services do you want to spend your wedding money on?

Music Review – Tell the World to Keep Them Kisses Coming

Scott here. New music is constantly coming out and we can’t all possibly hear it all. Some of what I am reviewing has actually been out for awhile but not big on the charts yet. I want to share with you some of the tunes I have reviewed and what I think of them.

The first song I want to talk about is called Bitchcraft by Drake Bell. Despite the title it is a catchy tune that feels like Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and Michael Jackson’s Off the Wall album had a love child. Very danceable.

Jerk Ribs by Kelis is an upbeat but laid back dance song that just makes you want to move. It also has a nice little horn thrown in. This is not anything like her Milkshake from a few years back. I believe she may be maturing as an artist.

Eric Hutchinson has a song out called Tell The World. It has a Bruno Mars type beat with makes you want to clap your hands and stomp your feet. A great little crowd participation song that will have many of your guests want to join right in.

Martina McBride’s In the Basement is a fun bluesy/country number that will be a joy to dance. It features Kelly Clarkson on harmony vocals. This is a cover of the song which was done by Etta James. Here is a fun little video of Etta’s version.

A rising popular country love song that is easy to dance to is from Craig Campbell and is called Keep Them Kisses Coming. While it was released in December it is currently number 13 on the country charts. Craig has quite a few good country dance tunes as well as love songs available so be sure to check out his other releases. Fish is a really fun little tune that makes you want to smile.

I Don’t Dance by Lee Brice is currently being touted as the number one requested first dance song for country weddings. Diana says it bores her to tears. But then, she always did like songs that make her want to get up and dance. 🙂