Wednesday, September 22, 2010

2010 Northwest Arkansas Bridal Show

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Fall Bridal Show will take place from 12:00-5 p.m. Sunday, September 26, 2010 at the John Q. Hammons Convention Center.

“We want to make it easy for couples going through the planning process,” said Tabitha Cunningham, promotions manager of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. The show will "bring all types of vendors to the show so couples can literally book their entire wedding in one day instead of driving all over town looking for what they need."

Wedding dresses, photographers, invitations, cakes and florists are just some of the booths you will find at the Bridal Show.

The show also includes a fashion show, contests, prizes and much more for brides.

Admission is $5 in advance and $7 at the door.

The day will also have a "Nearly Newlywed" Game at 2:30 pm. How incredibly fun will this be to watch?!

My tips to brides:

1) Bring pre-printed address labels that include your name, phone number, email address, and wedding date. This will make it super easy for you to register your information with vendors and into any drawings they might have at their booths.

2) Don't bring your big heavy wedding binder to the show with you. You will be collecting all types of information throughout the day and it will get difficult to juggle everything.

3) Bring your most trusted and valued bridal party members with you.

4) A bag to collect business cards, brochures and giveaways from prospective vendors. You will most likely receive one if you register your name at the front door.

5) A pen and paper to take notes of conversations you have with vendors as well as ideas you see that you want to remember. You can also make notes on the vendor listing that you will receive. You can mark down any discounts they are offering and have a quick reference to their contact information.

6) A camera, and not just the one on your phone. Snap pictures of flowers, cakes, dresses and anything else you want to add to your wedding planning folder or organizer.

Here’s what not to bring with you:

1. A wedding organizer/planner.

2. A long list of questions to ask vendors. These are quick meet and greet opportunities, vendors want to talk to as many prospective clients as possible so don’t monopolize someone’s time with tons of question. If you like a vendor call them to schedule a formal appointment.

Sadly, my son is having surgery on Friday and I will not be participating in the bridal show. But, please call for a complimentary consultation so that I can help you get started, help you select and secure from the wonderful vendors at the bridal show, and make sure your wedding is "A Party to Perfection."


Friday, September 3, 2010

Mad Hatter's Ball for the American Cancer Society

We have finally moved and are beginning to feel like things will resume to "normal." I have been meaning to blog about this wonderfully fun event for a couple of weeks, but I was ready to move!
I was honored when the American Cancer Society contacted me in January 2010 to co-chair a new fundraising event for their chapter in Northwest Arkansas. My grandmother had passed away from cancer on Christmas morning 2008 and my aunt would be diagnosed and pass away with stage IV brain, lung and bone cancer while planning with this event. Let's say that ACS "hits home" with me.

We had a wonderful committee this year who poured a number of hours into making this event successful. We also had wonderful sponsors including:

Delta Trust
BNSF Logistics
Best Buy
The Gardens of Arkanshire (our Platinum sponsor)
All photos courtesy of Anita with Steely Joe Studio! She also served as a committee member!

The main theme of our event was "Whimsical." This theme was carried from our guests' attire, decor, centerpieces, and even the catering! There were hats of every size, shape and color. We had hats you could rent for the evening and even had a hat contest.
Talk about a fun night!

We contacted local florists within Northwest Arkansas and asked them to create "whimsical" floral centerpieces for our guest tables. The florists amazed us with what whimsical creations that created!! They were all so unique and right on the mark! Our guests were then able to purchase their favorite centerpiece with the proceeds benefitting ACS.

Rose of Sharon in Fayetteville created her centerpieces in large tea cups with hydrangea, hanging amarynthis (one of my favorites), gerberas and more. I loved the short and round centerpieces!

Align Center
I had created over 20 quotes from the "Alice in Wonderland" movie and placed them in the centerpieces and on the tables for discussion points.

Ladybug Floral and Finds in Fayetteville created their "whimsical" centerpieces:
Stacked teacups with flowers

Red Roses with playing cards
A beautiful arrangement with a great whimsical hat!
Centerpieces made from button mums to resemble mushrooms

and even a centerpiece with the "White Rabbit!"

Candy Bouquet, featuring Designs by Suzanna in Rogers, created her own "whimsical" centerpieces too!
I just love kale!

A black feather wreath as a base with red roses and a hat stand in the center! We had suspended lanterns from the ceiling, and unknowingly, Candy Bouquet, featuring Designs by Suzanna incorporated them into her centerpieces.

Literally, a Candy Bouquet. I wonder how I didn't end up at one of these tables!

A centerpiece that incorporated a mushroom and clock. Of course, the kale!

The playing cards

These two centerpieces were covered in moss that was spritzed with water. Tea cups filled with candy adorned the moss and flowers and butterflies were incorporated too.
Our very own guests to the Gala created this centerpiece! I actually had someone come up to me at the event and ask how much this creation was!!

Can you tell it was a great event?!
Country Gardens in Springdale created six of these monstrous centerpieces. I loved that they were tropical and so unique! I received a floral lesson from the owner of Country Gardens on the species of the flowers, but I didn't write them down!

I remember Kanagroo Paw (both with fur and sans fur), Bird of Paradise, Bromeliad, and Anthurium. These large centerpieces sat on top of upside down top hats.

We can't forget that Boom Kinetic played! I had never heard them before, but must admit that I did do some dancing to classic 80's!! I also received an encore when they performed at a client's wedding two weeks later.
You can't forget about the food! The Gardens of Arkanshire were the Platinum sponsors of the Gala and prepared all of the food. We even named the food stations!
We had the Queen's Dessert Table that featured:

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Brownies and Cupcakes

And, meltaways! I admit, I ate quite a few of these! I didn't shrink upon eating them, but did grow. I guess I ate from the wrong side!

Another station was named "Off with their heads" that featured Artichoke Tarts:

Another was named "Cabbages and Kings" that featured chicken lettuce wraps

Another was named "Frumious" that featured Greek food like this wonderful Greek Salad!

Kim Moore, co-chair, Scott Dorminy, ACS Director, and myself after a long night and months of hard work!!
The event raised $11,000 for ACS and we will begin working on the 2011 Gala next month!