Selecting the place where you will celebrate saying “I do” is one of the most important decisions in the wedding planning process. There are so many factors to consider that many couples don’t even think about until they’ve already reserved their wedding venue. Things like the location, what’s included for the price, and of course reviews on past couple’s experiences should all be things that you are considering when making this decision. If you’re having trouble figuring out where to start in selecting your wedding venue, we hope we can help by providing some of our insights!
Location, location, location!!! This should be one of the first things on your mind when considering your wedding venue. But this doesn’t mean that you should just pick whichever venue is closest to your house. What we really mean is that the location should reflect the overall feeling that you wish to have at your wedding! How you feel when you walk into the doors of your wedding venue for the first time should be the same feeling you want to have on your wedding day!
Right: Kay De Lane Photography
Your location should also reflect the types of photos that you wish to have from your wedding. Waterfront wedding venues like Lesner Inn are the perfect setting for photos, rain or shine. However, you should also take into account your wedding venue’s proximity to other places you’d like to take photos. Whether you want a photo with your toes in the sand or to stand out in a forest of green you should know what photo opportunities are available near your wedding venue!
Above: Lia Everette Photography
Lesner Inn, we prefer to provide inclusive services so that our couples don’t have to work with 10 different wedding vendors to have their dream wedding! Things can get lost in translation when working with too many wedding vendors so, if you decide on having your wedding at a venue that only includes the space, make sure you are prepared to stay organized.
Right: Lia Everette Photography
Reading reviews from past couples and their experiences at your top wedding venues will give insight to real weddings there! If you are seeing several negative ratings, then the venue may have a few kinks that they need to work out. Wedding planning websites like The Knot and WeddingWire are great places to start when researching the best wedding venues in your area.
Above: Paige Ryan Photography
Can you imagine having your wedding at a venue where all of its event spaces are in a row of dark banquet halls where you can’t tell a stranger attending the wedding next door apart from your great aunt Susan? It makes you wish that you had enough wedding guests, and money, to book the entire venue. At Lesner Inn, we offer our couples the option to book the entire venue for a private wedding experience at a fair price! This is something that we recommend to all of our couples, especially those with higher guest counts, so that they can get the most out of their wedding day.
Above: Luke and Ashley Photography
For some people, selecting the songs they walk down the aisle to is as simple as saying “ I do”! For others, it can be a long process of overthinking song after song. We know this is such an important moment for every couple, so we wanted to help you out if you’re having a bit of a struggle choosing these songs for your special day! Check out some of our favorite processional and recessional songs that Lesner Inn couples have walked down the aisle to:
All of Me by John Legend
Amazed by Lonestar
A Thousand Years by Christina Perri
Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing by Chris Tomlin
Good Life by One Republic
Lost in the Moment by Big and Rich
Marry You by Bruno Mars
Take My Hand by Emily Hackett
Within You, Without You by The Beatles
You and Me by The Dave Mathews Band
Above: Cute E’s Photography
Accidently In Love by Counting Crows
At Last by Etta James
Best Day of My Life by American Authors
First Day of My Life by Bright Eyes
Good to Be Alive by Andy Grammer
How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) by Marvin Gaye
I Do by Colbie Caillat
I’m Yours by Jason Mraz
The Best if Yet to Come by Frank Sinatra
This Magic Moment by The Drifters
In addition to the above songs, we also love ANYTHING from Vitamin String Quartet for either the processional or recessional song if you’d like to give a traditional sound to your favorite modern songs!
Whether one of these songs sparked something for you and your fiancé or not, we hope you now have some thoughts on what type of songs you would like to use during the ceremony. We wish you the very best on your selection process and we can’t wait to sing along to the song you pick on your big day at Lesner Inn!
When most engaged couples think about having a bar at their wedding, their minds go straight to their favorite local beers & specialty cocktails. But, when planning their wedding, they see that there are numerous types of bars to host that don’t have to include alcohol! To give you some ideas, we want to share some of our favorites with you that you can easily get at Lesner Inn!
Like we mentioned, this is the most thought of bar at a wedding. The beverage choices are endless with your choice of your favorite Virginia local beers & wines, cocktail drinks, & more. Of course a bar is not required for any wedding, but there are several different ways that you can present this to your wedding guests if you so choose. Ask your event manager about the best way to accommodate what you want behind your bar at Lesner Inn!
This is another bar that most people tend to lean toward when discussing the different wedding bars. It is very popular in upcoming wedding trends & they are even being used instead of traditional wedding cake! Set out an array of your favorite desserts with anything from brownies to cookies to doughnuts to chocolate covered strawberries or anything else you may be craving. Here at Lesner Inn, we love to help out with these bars as we can provide you with brownies, cookies, chocolate covered strawberries, & even doughnuts!
Above: Keith Cephus Photography
The candy bar is such a crowd pleaser! So many couples are starting to have candy bars to go along with their cake or even have it as a favor for their guests. It’s perfect because you can personalize this with the types of candy you select or even by the stamps or labels on the bags you use for your guest’s doggy bags! If you love the idea, but don’t want to add another thing to your planning list, Lesner Inn will take care of it for you! Just let your event manager know your favorite selections & we will set it up for you on your wedding night!
Okay, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love these buttery puffs of heaven after a good meal? This bar is definitely one that your guests will be all over! Typically, there’s two ways to do this bar at Lesner Inn. You can have different flavors of popcorn for the guests to choose from or you can have good old-fashioned butter popcorn with different candies to put on top (we ALWAYS recommend a salty & sweet treat)! Either way, you can’t go wrong with a popcorn bar for a late night snack that everyone can grab while they’re on the dance floor!
Above: Dustin Lewis Images
Ice Cream Sundae Bar
We don’t know about you, but we LOVE ice cream & we’re pretty sure your guests will too! Why not give them a bar that’s full of ice cream, sprinkles, chocolate syrup, chocolate chips & so much more that they can pile on top? There’s no better way to cool down from the dance floor than to eat some cold ice cream that Lesner Inn can provide your guests!
Choosing your wedding vendors is one of the biggest decisions that you will make in the wedding planning process. However, many of our soonlyweds don’t understand the importance of making sure that they hire a professional! There have been too many times where a couple has asked a family friend, that has no experience in shooting weddings, to take the photos they will look back on for years! Well we’re here to tell you all about the wedding vendors that you must make sure are a wedding professional!
A professional wedding photographer will have years of training & experience taking portraits, candid, & group shots, & should be able to provide you with several examples! Every photographer has their own style of how they shoot & edit photos, & by choosing someone who isn’t a professional, you risk having your photos come out looking like they were taken with your friends iPhone!
Left: Sweet Adeline
Many people think that a videographer just shoots a video & sends it to you after the wedding. However, this is not the case! Videographers are skilled in shooting at the best angles, capturing moments with appropriate lighting, & editing the video after it’s all said & done. Editing a wedding video that makes you remember all of the feelings you felt on your actual wedding day is no easy task. They have years of experience to make your wedding day look like the best day of your life, which it should be!
DJ or Band
When people ask if they are able to bring in a set of speakers & plug in their iPod to play music for the wedding, we can’t help but cringe. Many people who are planning a wedding for the first time think that all your DJ does is put a playlist together & press play, but this is definitely not the case! Your DJ or musical entertainment is your hype man & MC. They make sure that guests are getting excited for every major event throughout your wedding. Who do you think announces you into the reception as newlyweds & gets your guests out on the dance floor?
Stellar Exposures Photography
Another vendor that couples constantly underrate are wedding coordinators! Too often we hear couples say that their friend or family member, who is also attending the wedding, will be in charge of coordinating the wedding. This is a huge no, no! While your friend or family member may be fully qualified to coordinate, they are guest at your wedding & will want to have fun like the rest of your guests. Nothing is worse than the couple having the pick up the slack when your friend should be making sure that your DJ & catering facility are ready for toasts! Lesner Inn now offers coordination services to make sure that our couples have the perfect Virginia Beach wedding!
Stellar Exposures PhotographyWe cannot stress the importance of professional wedding vendors enough. They have years of experience under their belt, & can guide you in the right direction when planning your dream wedding at Lesner Inn. Our final piece of advice is that you make sure to research the different wedding vendors in your area to make sure you absolutely LOVE what they do!
Lesner Inn has a list of our preferred wedding vendors that we give to everyone that we meet. Our list even includes discounts that vendors offer to Lesner Inn couples, just for booking us for their wedding venue & catering!
Happy Monday everyone! To kick off the week, we hope you take a moment to read what Event & Sales Manager, Cayleen Javorsky, loves most about working at Lesner Inn! You may be surprised to know that it’s not just the great food… more on her thoughts below:
When I think back to how I ended up working at Lesner Inn, planning one of the most epic days of someone’s life, I think back to my first experience working around weddings in Virginia Beach. While I was in college, I spent my summers working at the front desk of a local Virginia Beach hotel. During my time there, I was able to meet so many people who were celebrating their wedding weekend! My interaction with their big day was pretty much non-existent, but I always got to see the team of vendors pile in & work their magic to create what each couple had planned for so long to be the best day of their lives! Watching what each couple found to be their perfect wedding come to life was so fun to watch, & it has easily become one of my favorite parts about my job at Lesner Inn.
Since starting as an Event & Sales Manager at Lesner Inn almost 3 years ago, I have seen so many different color schemes, menu & dessert choices, & newfound traditions that couples have wanted to incorporate to set their wedding apart from the rest. Even though a lot of wedding trends stay pretty constant, most of our couples will have at least one minute detail that is completely unique to their style & tastes. Each of these unique details can make one wedding the complete opposite of another, but regardless of if they choose to have breakfast for dinner, a gelato bar for dessert, or to dance to an unconventional song all of these weddings are perfect in their own ways!
These unique touches make my job SO much fun, especially when even I am surprised on the night of (shout out to Amanda & David Haas for the guest appearance from a T-rex)!