This fun Halloween event provides families with an alternative to trick-or-treating door-to-door. My church organization is having their trunk-or-treat event this week. I had the pleasure of being on the planning committee and we decided the indoor theme for food/games would be a carnival/circus theme. Participants decorating their vehicles still have freedom to design to their preference. With excitement building to see how creative everyone will be with their vehicles, I have found some simple, unique ideas for anyone needing a last minute idea.
Fall is the most popular wedding season. It typically holds the best weather and beautiful natural color palettes. The right color palette can do a lot for your wedding. Colors can give energy, set a tone and establish a strong theme. The right combination can allow many of your guests to hold onto fond memories of your big day. Here’re some great fall wedding color palettes to make it a big success.
You’re engaged and decided to throw a fantastic wedding reception to celebrate…GREAT!! Aside from delicious food, most couples (and guests) decide to offer some sort of bar service. Unless you have worked in food service before, you are probably wondering how do you even begin to set up a bar? Let me START by saying if you are doing any type of bar (full, modified, or beer and wine only) I suggest you work with a professional bartending service, catering company, or your venue. Odds are they have a bartending package available for you to utilize and minimize stress. If you are wanting to strictly DIY your bar area keep reading…
No matter what kind of bar you’ve decided to go with, you’ll need two tables. One for the front of your bar, where guests will line-up, order their drinks, and re-order. Then one in the back for your bartenders to use as a work surface and storage. Many event rental companies rent out taller tables for use as a bar but a regular table works fine, too. The most important thing to remember when setting up a successful bar is making sure that your bartender has all the supplies they need, and then let them set it up according to their specific preferences. Communicate (cannot stress that enough) with them about what they need to have when they arrive at the venue, and then trust them, or your coordinator to check in with them, to set up on time.
Here is a list of the BASIC bar set up essentials:
CORK SCREW: At least two for every bartender, the kind with the jointed pull is the easiest to use. BOTTLE OPENER: At least one per bartender. SMALL BUCKETS: These are for storing ice on the top of your bar for mixing in with drinks. You’ll need more for a full bar than for beer and wine only. ICE SCOOP: At least one for every ice bucket you’re setting up on top of the bar. BAR RAGS: On average you need one for every hour for each bartender, plus a few more. BIG BUCKETS: These keep your cans and bottles cold. Get enough to hold half of your bottles at a time, with ice. BIG COOLER WITH LID: This is for storing your extra ice. Have enough for storing the ice that is not being used as it will be needed to stay cold to replenish buckets throughout the wedding. GARNISH CONTAINERS: Enough containers to store the garnish varieties you’ll need. SHAKERS: At least one per bartender. STIRRER: You don’t need anything crazy, but something like this is good.
Let’s talk beer. First, you need to decide if you are serving your beer from bottles or a keg. Speaking from personal experience of having NO idea how to tap a keg I strongly feel bottles are MUCH easier to deal with but there are some strong-minded individuals that claim beer tastes better out of kegs. If you go the keg route, you will need a party tub to keep it cold (with ice), and a tap. The store you purchase the keg from should be able to provide this.
I don’t think I have mentioned ICE enough yet. Let’s talk more about keeping things cool… Everyone knows beer and wine are never served with ice in them (or shouldn’t be). Meaning, you’ll only need ice for keeping wine and beer chilled, plus some extra for serving non-alcoholic options. The bartender should layer half of your bottles and cans in party buckets with ice to keep cold. Allow an hour for everything to chill. Then, put the remaining ice (still in bags) in a cooler with a lid. Remember the second table I mentioned above? All of these coolers and buckets will be kept in the shade under those tables. Your remaining bottles and cans should be stored somewhere cool as well. If you have access to a fridge in another part of your venue take advantage of it. Someone (a wedding coordinator or one of their assistants, perhaps?) can go get it when more drinks are needed. For the bar table, fill a small bucket with ice and add a scoop. This is for sodas or mixed drinks if you serve them. It’s important to keep the ice that’s being used to cool cans and bottles separate from the ice that’s actually going into things for food safety purposes.
Garnishes can be sliced the day before. Main garnishes are lemons and limes, but you can provide more based on the drinks you are serving (cherries, olives, etc.).
Need to know how much beer, wine, or liquor to provide? Here is a fantastic cheat sheet from The D Tales!
Did you know last week was Customer Service Week? It is celebrated annually during the first full week in October. With that in mind I wanted to focus on a tipping guide found via Wedding Wire. Figuring out how much to tip your wedding vendors can be tricky, but it’s an important way to show your appreciation for their hard work. Check out their chart below to assist you figure out who and how much to tip.
Let’s face it other than an amazing dress and blissful bride and groom, there are just a few things that make a wedding truly exceptional. And it is no surprise that at the tip-top of the list is food and drinks! Pizza isn’t something I immediately think of when you think of wedding food, at least not until my friend through that idea out last year during the planning stages of her own wedding. However, this tasty treat is quickly becoming a favorite wedding food station. Food stations allow guests to tailor servings to their needs, and puts an interactive spin on the wedding dining experience. Utilizing self-serve food stations brings a casual, relaxed vibe, encouraging guests to indulge when they are ready, rather than at an obligatory meal time.
Luckily, pizza won’t cost you billions to feed your wedding guests. For an affordable wedding buffet that will feed large amounts of people, I encourage you to consider this pizza bar idea. Choose traditional favorites like margarita and pepperoni or choose more unusual gourmet pairings to truly impress your guests. Another idea is to let your guests have fun picking their own toppings. Wedding pizza trucks are perfect for ensuring you get the best authentic Italian style wood-fired pizza cooked to perfection so check out Giadas Trattoria.
With the holiday season quickly approaching, I am putting together a little “Elf Emergency List.” This list is a selection of vendors from photographers for family photos for the traditional holiday greeting card to housekeeping services to take care of the before and/or after holiday party.
Need help with the preparations such as hanging decorations, running errands, table decor set up, etc.? Please contact me! There are a few slots open through the end of the year. I love creating fun parties as much as I love weddings. It would be my pleasure to allow you to enjoy the holiday season as much as your guests.
I hope you have a wonderful holiday season. Here is the list!
Desilu Photography desiluphotography.com
Allyn Brown Photography allynbrownphotography.com