Want help with planning a reception in New England without having to hire a professional? It all starts with choosing the best location for your wedding reception near Worcester, MA, and following a few pro tips. The more organized that you can get from the very beginning, the easier it will be to stay on track. From hiring vendors to plotting out wedding reception activities and learning about reception staging ideas, it might seem overwhelming at first, but it can be a lot easier than you might think. While there are many things to consider when planning a wedding, once you have a firm grasp on the basics and know what to expect, it becomes a lot more simplified.
Create a Budget
The first thing you need to do is to get a handle on your finances. How much do you have to spend on your wedding? This includes cash-in-hand, any loans you might plan on taking out, contributions from (reliable) family members, and money that you will continue putting into a wedding savings account between now and your wedding day. Most venues and vendors require an up-front deposit, as well as ongoing payments up until the day of your wedding, with the balance due either before your wedding day or in a final check on the wedding day. Don’t ever pay everything completely a year in advance, even if you have all of the funds available. Also, consider getting wedding insurance to protect you from any last-minute changes or problems that may come up throughout the process.
Choose the Venue
The first contract you sign should be with the venue. As you start searching for the best wedding reception near Worcester, MA, for your special day, make sure to consider the size of the facility, the number of guests that can be hosted, the amenities available, and the services that are offered. The reason why you need to pick the venue first is that it will set the tone for the rest of your wedding plans. The Crystal Room can provide you with support for everything from organizing your reception staging ideas to suggesting pre-vetted vendors in the local area. Lean on our experience to maximize your efforts when planning a reception in New England.
Hire the Vendors
Before hiring any vendors, including the baker for your wedding cake, discuss your plans and ideas with the venue. Some facilities have a no-access list for vendors that have a terrible reputation in the local area. You wouldn’t want to put a deposit down for a DJ or a florist only to find out that they had not provided quality services to other couples or that they were not adequately insured. Venues have insurance requirements designed to cover them from potential damage; however, these policies can also protect you, as well. If the vendor does not meet the criteria for a venue, the chances are good that you wouldn’t have a pleasant experience with them either. When you decide on a vendor, and they are approved by the venue, make sure to secure their services with a deposit, and then sign and retain a contract that you can refer to throughout the planning process.
Send Out the Invitations
Depending on the time frame that you have for planning a reception in New England, you might want to send out a “heads up” save the date card in advance of a formal invitation. Once you send out the official invitation and begin receiving RSVP cards or contacts back from your invited guests, you can begin creating the seating chart. Figuring out who should sit where and next to whom can be a lot more challenging than most couples realize. You want to make sure your selections are fair and honor parents, grandparents, and other significant family members, while also ensuring that no one feels ignored, forgotten, or left out on your big day. The sooner you can start this process, the easier it will be.
Consider a Wedding Website or Page
One way to coordinate all of your plans and keep guests up-to-date on the latest news regarding your wedding is to create a wedding website or social media page. You can have this professionally done or take some time and learn how to do it yourself. Make sure to check in on the page regularly or sign-up to receive alerts whenever anyone posts a question or makes a comment. Create an RSVP form that people can use to reply to your invitations so you can receive confirmation back even faster. Some programs can be used to create a running list that will check guests off when you receive a contact to help keep it all under control. Make sure you know the final “headcount date” at the venue so you can provide the guest with information to them promptly.
Take Time for Yourself
Throughout the process, make sure to plan dates, weekends, and celebration opportunities with you and your future spouse, close friends, family members, and the wedding party. Outside of the bridal shower and other traditional events, a nice dinner party at home or weekend at a local spa can help to reduce stress and bring everyone together. This can be helpful when joining together families and friends so everyone will be more acquainted and familiar with each other on the wedding day. Take time to spend alone as a couple as well, cementing your relationship and remembering why you are planning a reception in New England in the first place.
Ready to get started? Contact The Crystal Room by calling 508-478-7800 and speak with one of our on-site event coordinators about planning your wedding reception near Worcester, MA. We can answer any questions you might have about the venue, reception staging ideas, vendors, availability, pricing, wedding reception activities, and more.