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Showing posts from August, 2010

Banff Weddings

I just returned from spending several days in beautiful Banff, Alberta, Canada. The mountains were awe inspiring and we even had a dusting of snow one night, adding to the beauty. Banff has grown into a bustling resort town since my last visit about 16 years ago. Hundreds of tourists filled the streets from early morning until late at night.

On a Friday we visited the historic Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel, situated on a knoll overlooking the Bow River valley. The staff was setting up for two weddings, a wedding reception, and a rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. Only one wedding was planned for Saturday; the other events were all occurring on Friday. Guests were arriving for all the events, keeping the front desk and the porters busy figuring out who was with which group. To add to the mayhem, Banff was blanketed in smoke from over 300 fires burning in British Columbia. Events planned for the terraces overlooking the river had to be moved inside, necessitating the closure of dining room…

So You Want to be an Event Planner

I receive several e-mails and phone calls each month from people asking for information on how to become an event planner. As I talk with them, most have no idea of the work involved or how to get started. Thanks to Hollywood, people have a twisted view of the business, thinking it is all glamour and partying and they will make bushels of money. Nothing could be further from the truth.

The turn-over rate in the industry nationally is about two years, largely because people have unrealistic expectations going into the business. Event planning is hard work. You have to be very detail oriented, able to solve problems and make decisions in a moment, able to work with all types of personalities, and be able to work on your feet for 8 or 10 hours at a time. You aren't there to party. Rather, you will be in the background making sure everything is going smoothly. You may be doing the grunt work - emptying trash, sweeping, mopping, setting up and tearing down tables and chairs and anythin…

Don't Go Into Debt to Pay for Your Special Event

It costs money to plan and execute a special event, whether it is a family reunion, your parent's 50th anniversary party, a wedding or another special event. It is easy to put the costs on a credit card but not so easy to pay for the event for months or even years after it has occurred. With a bit of preplanning, you can prevent that from happening.

When you decide to hold a special event, the first thing to do is make a realistic budget of what you can afford, then decide which things are most important. Maybe you want a great location, so, to afford it, you are willing to compromise on the type of food served. Or perhaps a DJ is okay rather than a band. If you will be sharing the costs with others, perhaps siblings or extended family members, you will need to decide how to divide the costs. Will everyone contribute equally or will certain costs, such as the food or the facility rental, be paid by certain people. If family members will be sharing the costs, you may want to open a…