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  • Writer's pictureAlicia LaHaie

Event Management (aka Day-of/Month-of Wedding Coordination) and Why Pennywell Events Does it Better

Everyone you talk to says "you HAVE to have a Day-of-Coordinator for your wedding" but then they leave you to figure out the next steps on your own. While we can appreciate the sentiment that your friends and family have to save your sanity and give you and your parents the day to enjoy every special moment without being bombarded by 1500 questions, they leave you on a cliffhanger as to how to make it happen. So, let's discuss why having a Wedding Coordinator is SO important for you, your family members, and your vendors. We'll talk about the differences between an independently hired coordinator and a Venue Coordinator. Lastly, why we here at Pennywell Events do wedding coordination better; better for both our couples and better for all of their wedding day vendors!

Bride and Alicia with Pennywell Events taking a photo together at the wedding

Let's start with why you need Event Management, formerly known as Day-of or Month-of Coordination for your wedding. To start, because after doing all of that planning and putting it all together to make it the most magical day of your lives, the last thing you want to have to do is play director and answer questions from vendors, guests, or your new mother-in-law. Questions about the day's schedule, who goes where and when and if something goes a bit off during the day, someone to manage the obstacles and keep the day running smoothly. For example, a few years back, we had a situation where the second line brass band was supposed to start at the end of the ceremony, but due to circumstances that none of us could have seen, the band was severely delayed. Rather than the couple missing out on such a big part of their wedding day, I ran to the reception band and quickly explained the situation. The reception band grabbed a few instruments and headed out to perform as the second line band to make the best of the situation. The best part, the guests never knew there was ever an issue and the couple were able to have the best wedding day without the stress of having to figure things out on their own. I say all of this to bring to light that there are very few weddings that did not have a slight hiccup or bump throughout the day, and having someone to smooth those bumps over and make things run smoothly so that you or your mom are not having to tackle those things and possibly miss important moments of your wedding day is so incredibly valuable.

Bride and Groom take photo with their wedding planners and photographer

What is the difference between a Day-of/Month-of Coordinator and a Venue Coordinator? From our experience, an independent Coordinator is going to help you to put all the puzzle pieces together starting with your list of vendors (DJ/Band, Officiant, Florist, Bakery, Second Line Brass Band, etc.) and putting together a wedding day timeline that incorporates the arrival and set-up times of each, the ceremony breakdown, the reception breakdown from first dance and cake cutting to the end of the night exit or second line. A Venue Coordinator, which we love working alongside, is there to run things in-house, especially those venues that handle catering and bar service. If you think of it like a restaurant, a Venue Coordinator is like the back of house manager, who typically handles the kitchen, tables, chairs, linens, and keeping the venue running at peak efficiency. An independent coordinator would be like the Front of House manager at a restaurant, handling things like guest needs, decor, and flow of the event. There are some venues that do offer an in-house coordinator, but you would want to check how far outside of the venue's reach they actually assist you with in regards to outside vendors, timeline, and end of the night assistance as far as clean up and returning your personal items.

wedding planners returning all the couple's personal items at the end of the wedding day

Which brings me to why Pennywell Events does wedding coordination differently. We have heard it said again and again that for many coordinators, they do not start working with you on your wedding until 6-8 weeks out from your event. From a preparation standpoint, that seems like there are too many factors that can be overlooked or missed. When you have planned an event for 6 months or more, leaving those checks and balances to wait until the last minute just doesn't make sense. Throughout the planning process, we have open communication with all of our couples, planning and coordination alike. We regularly check in with them, have them send over their vendor information and contracts so that if there ever arises an issue, it can be handled from the start of the relationship, not almost at the finish line. At 2 months out from your event, we have already put together your timeline with all of those details from your vendor contracts and all of those important moments that you have talked to us about from all of our calls and emails. From the start of the word go, we are there to act as your wedding guide. There are so many couples that we have spoken with either before they hire us or those that did not have a wedding coordinator that we spoke with after the fact that said during wedding planning, "I felt like I was insane because of ...." and that simply is stress and anxiety coming through. Truth is, you are not insane, you are planning a wedding and without someone there to answer your questions and to guide you on how to make it all come together, anyone could feel like they were losing their mind. The way I have always put it, I have all of this knowledge about the wedding industry and how to orchestrate a wedding or event, and I cannot take all of that with me when I go, so why not share my experiences and my know-how with the world to make it a better, less stressful place.

We also really enjoy getting to know our couples throughout the process, whether they are Full Planning or Event Management, getting to know you as both individuals and as a couple is how we are able to do our job and handle any situation the way that you would. Without getting to know our couples through calls, texts, emails, and the in-person meetings, then it would be like having strangers run your event. Our past couples talk about feeling like they had a friend alongside them helping to plan their wedding, and that's what we love to hear because we don't just want to be another vendor for you, we want to know you so that we can make your wedding day the most fun and memorable day for the two of you, your families and your friends.

Lastly, at the end of the wedding day, no one wants to have to clean up their wedding venue or have to worry with who has to stay back to collect all of your decor and personal items. That's one thing that we do for all of our couples, at the end of the day, we collect everything, personal items, decor you have purchased, gifts/cards, and even the late-night food from your caterer so you have food when you get done at your after party, and we deliver it back to wherever you are staying for the night. We have delivered wedding dresses, marriage licenses, and even large plywood moons back to our couples at the end of the night, so that the first day of your new marriage, you do not have to worry about anything other than enjoying the time with your friends and family and your new spouse!

We're ready to help you on your wedding planning journey in whatever way you need us. Check out our different service levels here and then send us a message to get started when you are ready!

newlyweds with their wedding planner, DJ, and photographers at the end of the night

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