Select­ing a Menu for ANY Appetite

A com­mon con­cern for most of our wed­ding and social event clients is how to offer the best menu that will appeal to all of their guest’s appetites WITH­OUT break­ing the bank! Luck­ily, the ladies at Lesner Inn are experts in this depart­ment and our cater­ing menu has a vari­ety of menu options so there is some­thing for every­one!

The Lesner Inn has three menu options for clients to choose from, this includes: plated, buf­fet, and sta­tions. Pric­ing varies between wed­dings and social events, but our tips and tricks below ring true for any type of event!

Plated Menu
echard_wheeler_lesner-dual-entree-plated-mealBefore we go into what we think works best for a plated meal, let’s first iden­tify the three options that you have when select­ing this menu option.
Right: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy
  • Sin­gle entrée plated meal: This is one of the sim­plest options where each of your guests will get the same plate with the same entrée.
  • Dual entrée plated meal: This is also a sim­ple option that also gives your guests a bit of vari­ety. Each guest will receive the same plate, but on that plate will be two entrées. Who doesn’t love a lit­tle surf and turf? No drama. No hassle.
  • Mul­ti­ple entrée plated meal: A plated meal with mul­ti­ple entrees requires that you receive each of your guests menu pref­er­ences in advance, cre­ate a seat­ing chart, have place cards for each of your guests, and select meal sig­ni­fiers to iden­tify which guests will be receiv­ing chicken, fish, beef, etc. Many peo­ple are deterred from this option when they real­ize how much more work it can be.
Only you know which of these options will work best for your guests. The type of menu that you select is a per­sonal pref­er­ence, there is no right answer! Plated menus are great for groups large and small but, in our expe­ri­ence, appeal to the major­ity in the form of a dual entrée meal.

Buffet-menu-baby-shower-virginia-beach Buf­fet Menu
When select­ing a menu that will appeal to as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble, our top choice will always be buf­fet style. With this menu option, you are able to choose a two or three entrée buf­fet and allow your guests to choose what they’d like on their plate, and how much of it. If you know you have picky eaters in the mix, we highly rec­om­mend this option!
Left: Tara Liebeck Pho­tog­ra­phy

Sta­tions Menu
Sim­i­lar to buf­fet style, our sta­tions menu allows your guests to walk through and select which menu items they would like on their plate. The dif­fer­ence is that many of the menu options are at a chef attended sta­tion where a Lesner Inn staff mem­ber will be sautéing, flip­ping, or carv­ing food right in front of your guests. Many peo­ple opt for this menu style if they pre­fer to dress up their buf­fet and of course it adds a bit of extra enter­tain­ment to the event.

No mat­ter which menu style you choose, the cater­ing at Lesner Inn is some of the best in the busi­ness if we do say so our­selves. If you don’t believe us, just check out our stel­lar reviews on The Knot, Wed­ding­Wire, Face­book, and on our web­site.

For more infor­ma­tion about events and cater­ing at Lesner Inn, con­tact us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 7574811122.

Top 5 Rea­sons you NEED a Wed­ding Coor­di­na­tor

One of the most fre­quently asked ques­tions we get at Lesner Inn is, should I hire a wed­ding coor­di­na­tor? No mat­ter if we are meet­ing with some­one who’s a pro­fes­sional brides­maid, has a well-​organized maid of honor, or is even a wed­ding coor­di­na­tor them­selves the answer will always be YES!! A wed­ding coor­di­na­tor, who isn’t on your guest list, will make your wed­ding day 100% stress free. We’re here to tell you why you absolutely need a wed­ding coor­di­na­tor for the day of your wed­ding!

Waterfront-Greenery-Iceland-Wedding-Virginia-Beach (75) 1. Read between the lines
A wed­ding coor­di­na­tor, not to be con­fused with a plan­ner, will ensure that every­thing you have planned and pre­pared for your wed­ding day is exe­cuted per­fectly from start to fin­ish. This means coor­di­nat­ing with each of your ven­dors to ensure that they are pro­vid­ing exactly what you were expect­ing. They will make sure that all of your ven­dors have a full under­stand­ing of the vision of your wed­ding and that they work together to accom­plish it!

Right: Dustin Lewis Images

2. Get­ting down the aisle
The hours before the cer­e­mony can be extremely chaotic at times. Between get­ting any late guests to take their seats, round­ing up fam­ily mem­bers for the pro­ces­sional, and mak­ing sure not to spoil the first look between you and your fiancé there is a lot to take care of! These tasks should be des­ig­nated to a pro­fes­sional wed­ding coor­di­na­tor that will be present up until you walk down the aisle.

3. What if?
Some­thing that we can safely say will haunt any cou­ple before their wed­ding day are the end­less “what if” sce­nar­ios. What if the cake doesn’t show up? What if my DJ goes miss­ing? What if my bus­tle breaks? The sce­nar­ios are end­less. Your wed­ding coor­di­na­tor not only takes the nec­es­sary steps to pre­vent any of these sce­nar­ios from hap­pen­ing, but will go to any lengths nec­es­sary to fix them if they do!

4. You’re not wear­ing a watch
One of the things we can guar­an­tee that you won’t be doing on your wed­ding day is keep­ing track of the time. That’s where your coor­di­na­tor comes in. Your wed­ding coor­di­na­tor will make sure that you are stay­ing on sched­ule, so that you have enough time to hit the dance floor with your besties on your wed­ding day!

Waterfront-Greenery-Iceland-Wedding-Virginia-Beach (43)

Above: Dustin Lewis Images

5. Set up and break-​down
Prob­a­bly one of the most tedious tasks on your wed­ding day is set­ting up and break­ing down décor. One of the great­est things about a wed­ding coor­di­na­tor is that they take care of this for you! At the end of the night, your coor­di­na­tor will bring every­thing to a des­ig­nated vehi­cle so all you have to worry about is get­ting it home!

We’ve seen so many cou­ples boast about how orga­nized they are and how many wed­dings they’ve been involved in, but no mat­ter how true this may be we will never stop rec­om­mend­ing hir­ing a wed­ding coor­di­na­tor. No bride or groom wants to be respon­si­ble for the “what if” sce­nar­ios on their wed­ding day, and they shouldn’t have to be! A wed­ding coor­di­na­tor is a small price to pay for a very nec­es­sary ser­vice.


Above: Dustin Lewis Images

To learn more about Lesner Inn’s coor­di­na­tion ser­vices, con­tact us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 7574811122.

No Has­sle Favors at Lesner Inn

Wed­ding favors are the per­fect way to say thank you to your guests for cel­e­brat­ing your wed­ding with you. Over the years, wed­ding favors have made the switch from being small trin­kets that will most likely end up in the trash, to food or bev­er­age items that guests can actu­ally enjoy! Lesner Inn is totally behind this shift in the wed­ding game, and we’re here to tell you about the awe­some favor ideas that you can get directly from us!

Mini Cham­pagne Bot­tles
We can admit that we’re obsessed with any­thing mini for wed­dings. Lesner Inn has mini bot­tles or cans of blue cham­pagne, rose, and of course stan­dard cham­pagne that make the per­fect wed­ding favors! The pack­ag­ing is to die for, and the prod­uct is even bet­ter! If you want to per­son­al­ize these adorable lit­tle bot­tles, just order stick­ers with your names and wed­ding date and slap them on the bot­tles. You’ve cre­ated has­sle free favors for your guests to either take home or enjoy on the night of your wed­ding!

Bridesmaids - Blanc de Bleu - David Champagne

Above: David Cham­pagne Photography

A lot of peo­ple are even using candy bars as a favor for their guests! Who doesn’t love a sweet treat for the jour­ney home from a Lesner Inn wed­ding? These can be dis­played as a candy bar so that guests can go up and select what they want to bring home in indi­vid­ual bags pro­vided by Lesner Inn.


Above: Cute E’s Photography

If you’ve read our blog before, you’ve prob­a­bly heard us preach about how awe­some donuts are if you’re look­ing for an alter­na­tive to tra­di­tional wed­ding cake. Well, here we are again to tell you how amaz­ing donuts are as wed­ding favors!! All you need are small boxes or paper bags for your guests to pack up a donut or two to take home after the wed­ding. When they’re in need of some easy hang­over food the next day, all they need is to pop the box open and enjoy!

View More:

Above: Stel­lar Expo­sures Photography

Lesner Inn sure does love any type of bar, so why not a pop­corn bar? Pop­corn bars are such fun favors because your guests can cus­tomize the pop­corn to be fla­vored with white ched­dar or tossed with M&Ms, choco­late chips, or but­ter­scotch chips! We even pro­vide adorable pop­corn bags for your guests to take these treats home!


Above: Dustin Lewis Images

We are totally obsessed with any of these favor ideas! The best part is that they are has­sle free since Lesner Inn will pro­vide every­thing you need, and even set it up for you!

To learn more about hav­ing any of these as favors at your wed­ding, speak to one of our event & sales man­agers by con­tact­ing us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 7574811122.

Lesner Insights: select­ing your wed­ding venue

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

Waterfront-Wedding-Venue-Virginia-Beach-Lesner-Inn-27.jpgWhat’s Included

There are so many wed­ding venues that charge a large amount just for you to use the venue! This often doesn’t even include the tables, chairs, table ware, or cater­ing. At 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

We hope our insights are help­ful in your search for the per­fect wed­ding venue! If you are inter­ested in host­ing your wed­ding with us at Lesner Inn, reach out to one of our sales man­agers at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 7574811122!

Wed­ding Pro­ces­sional & Reces­sional Songs

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:

Pro­ces­sional Songs:
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

Waterfront-Wedding-Processional-Virginia-Beach-43.jpg Above: Cute E’s Photography

Reces­sional Songs:
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!

Not the Aver­age Bar

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!

Alco­hol Bar
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!

Dessert Bar
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

Candy Bar
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!

Pop­corn Bar
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!

Now when you think of the bar you would like to incor­po­rate for your guests at your wed­ding, we hope you con­sider some of these tasty treats as well! If you have an idea that you’d like to share with us, reach out to one of our event & sales man­agers at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at 7574811122!

Wed­ding High­lights: Kayla & Parker 3.24.2018


We have to take a minute to brag about this AMAZ­ING cou­ple right here! Kayla & Parker stole our hearts from the moment that we met them. They are two of the most gen­uine peo­ple, & work­ing with them to cre­ate their per­fect day was an absolute joy! Reflect­ing on this day makes us so happy that Lesner Inn could be a part of their Vir­ginia Beach wed­ding, & we hope to work with more cou­ples just like them!!

How, when, & where did you meet?
Parker and I met in 2015 when he moved to Nor­folk for the Navy. He was apart­ment hunt­ing and I was a Leas­ing Con­sul­tant and rented an apart­ment to him. I told him that day that I would be his neigh­bor and I don’t think he took it seri­ously. He found out a few weeks later that I really was his next-​door neigh­bor! He invited me on a date a few months later and the rest was his­tory!

Dat­ing can be awk­ward, do you have any funny sto­ries from when you first started dat­ing?
I always give Parker a hard time about our very first date! He asked me out to a hockey game and I had said yes. When I walked over to his apart­ment, there were 2 of his guy friends there too!! So it was a Parker and Kayla with 2 other of his friends date. Parker says “I didn’t know it was a date, a thought it was an….outing”.

Tell us your engage­ment story? When did it hap­pen?
Our engage­ment was super sim­ple and per­fect! We bought our first home together and we love our sun­sets from our back­yard. Last June he got down on one knee at sun­set, asked me to marry him, and at the same time our dog Gra­cie jumped in his face and licked him. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way!

Military-Wedding-Virginia-Beach-Lesner-Inn-(45).jpgWhat made you pick Lesner Inn as your wed­ding venue?
We def­i­nitely wanted some­thing on the water and a place that we could really have every­thing all at one place: the cer­e­mony, recep­tion, décor, cater­ing, and coor­di­na­tion. When we vis­ited, the view was beau­ti­ful and the venue fit the vision we had for our wed­ding day.

What addi­tional ven­dors did you choose for your wed­ding day, and why?
We had a DJ, Florist, and Pho­tog­ra­pher. We really did not need to hire many other ven­dors because there was so much included at The Lesner Inn!

What décor & other design aspects of your wed­ding were most impor­tant to you?
We wanted to keep things sim­ple, so we didn’t want too many dec­o­ra­tions. We wanted small cen­ter­pieces and flow­ers with green­ery to give our recep­tion and wed­ding a roman­tic and sweet feel. That was really impor­tant to us.


What was your vision for your wed­ding day?

Sim­ple, sweet, and roman­tic on the water!

What unique details did you add to your wed­ding?
Parker’s a twin so for the mother/​son dance, Parker had danced with their mom, and his brother Kyle danced with their Grandma. Half way through the song, they switched places and I thought that was really sweet and unique.

What were you most excited for your wed­ding day?
I asked Parker this ques­tion and his first sen­tence was “To see the love of my life”! I def­i­nitely agree. We hadn’t seen each other since the night before and hav­ing the wed­ding day jit­ters and nerves; all I wanted to do was see him. Once we saw each other both of us were instantly not ner­vous any­more and we were calm and ready to walk down the aisle!

How did you han­dle the stress of wed­ding plan­ning? Were there any major hic­cups along the way?
Plan­ning a wed­ding can def­i­nitely be stress­ful! We planned our wed­ding in 8 months but for 4 of those months, Parker was on deploy­ment. This did cause some added stress because of lim­ited avail­abil­ity to talk with each other. What was nice, though, was that many of our ven­dors were able to fit us in before he left and we go to meet in per­son with our DJ when he got back so it was cool that they worked with us.

Do you have any advice for cou­ples who are plan­ning their wed­dings now?
Hon­estly, I would say to try and bun­dle! We bun­dled the cer­e­mony, recep­tion, décor, coor­di­na­tion, plan­ning, cater­ing, and much more all at Lesner Inn and that truly made things so easy for us. Hav­ing things taken care of all in one place truly made wed­ding plan­ning a breeze so BUN­DLE when pos­si­ble! Also, doing the first look with each other was one of the best deci­sions we made. For one, you save time after the cer­e­mony and are able to min­gle with friends and fam­ily sooner, and two, see­ing each other calmed our nerves that day.

We loved being a part of Kayla & Parker’s wed­ding day & of course cel­e­brat­ing with their friends & fam­ily! Lesner Inn takes pride in being inclu­sive, so that our cou­ples don’t have to search for ser­vices from sev­eral dif­fer­ent Vir­ginia Beach wed­ding ven­dors.

For more infor­ma­tion on our ser­vices, con­tact us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 7574811122!

Thank you to Kay De Lane Pho­tog­ra­phy for cap­tur­ing all of these amaz­ing pho­tos!


10 Ques­tions to Ask Before Book­ing Your Wed­ding Venue

Wed­ding plan­ning, no mat­ter how many times you’ve done it, comes with a lot of ques­tions about how and when cer­tain things should get done. This can be stress­ful enough, but on top of all the ques­tions already going through your head, you then go to check out your top wed­ding venues and real­ize that you don’t even know what ques­tions to ask. Well, being one of Vir­ginia Beach’s top wed­ding venues, we have some help­ful tips for what­ever venue you’re look­ing at! We’ve put together a list of 10 ques­tions, and answers, that we hope will help and that you should def­i­nitely ask your wed­ding venue before book­ing!
  1. What do you provide?
This is such an impor­tant ques­tion because you want to know what you need to bring in from an out­side ven­dor or what you’ll need to bring your­self. Lesner Inn tries to be as inclu­sive as pos­si­ble, and pro­vides every­thing from the linens and decor to the food and bev­er­age. We even offer wed­ding favors! Make sure you dis­cuss what your venue includes in detail before book­ing so you know exactly what you’ll be respon­si­ble for!
  1. How long do I have to set every­thing up and break it down?
Like almost every ques­tion in this list this changes for each venue, but you should at least have 2 hours to set up before the wed­ding and 1 hour to break down. This is our pol­icy at Lesner Inn, includ­ing the set up for ven­dors and other per­sonal décor items. Be sure to ask your venue because this is just a gen­er­al­iza­tion, so it might be dif­fer­ent for each place!
  1. Do you have a pre­ferred ven­dors list? If so, do I have to stick to that list?
Most venues will have a pre­ferred ven­dors list. Whether you have to stick to those spe­cific ven­dors or not is what is nor­mally dif­fer­ent between venues. We have a list with ven­dors that we highly rec­om­mend, but our cou­ples are more than wel­come to bring in any ven­dor they would like! How­ever, our pre­ferred ven­dors offer dis­counts to Lesner Inn cou­ples, so we highly rec­om­mend tak­ing advan­tage of that!
  1. If my fiancé gets deployed, what is the process we go through to postpone?
Virginia Beach Military Wedding Lesner Inn Waterfront.jpgThis is a ques­tion that we really hope doesn’t come up dur­ing the wed­ding plan­ning process, but we under­stand when duty calls. Dif­fer­ent venues will have dif­fer­ent poli­cies and processes, but Lesner Inn is par­tic­u­larly under­stand­ing in this sit­u­a­tion and will resolve this on a case by case basis. Be sure to ask your venue what the steps are if this hap­pens before you book!
Right: Love Sim­ply Pho­tog­ra­phy
  1. How do I hold my date?
Ahh, the ques­tion that every cou­ple should ask once you’ve com­pletely fallen in love with your wed­ding venue! Some venues will require a deposit to hold the date and oth­ers will hold it com­pli­men­tary for a cer­tain amount of time. Once a cou­ple expresses that they would like to secure the date, Lesner Inn will place a 5 day com­pli­men­tary hold on the date so the cou­ple can rest easy know­ing that no one else can book it. If you have a spe­cific date in mind, we highly rec­om­mend ask­ing if you can place a hold on it and what is required to book the space while you’re in the process of look­ing every­thing over!
  1. What is the pay­ment schedule?
Just like every­thing else, this will dif­fer from venue to venue, but we can say that most of them will have a pay­ment sched­ule for you. We don’t know of any venues that would required every­thing to be paid in one lump sum. Either way, never fear to talk about finances with your wed­ding venue. If you want to break pay­ments up into more fre­quent and smaller amounts just tell your venue up front!
  1. When do you need all final num­bers and details?
This! This is such an impor­tant ques­tion that needs to be asked before book­ing your wed­ding venue! We can’t stress enough how impor­tant it is to have every sin­gle detail that your venue needs in to them on time. Def­i­nitely ask when they will need all final num­bers, food/​beverage selec­tions, etc. This is espe­cially impor­tant when your venue does on-​site cater­ing, as Lesner Inn does, because they need to pre­pare all décor and order your food and alco­hol in time for your event. It will make the end of plan­ning so much eas­ier if you know before­hand when your venue will need all of this infor­ma­tion and can save you some hefty late fees, so be sure to ask!
  1. How far out should I book?
This is really up to you and how picky you are with the spe­cific date, day of the week, or time of day for your wed­ding. If you’re super flex­i­ble, then you really don’t need to worry about book­ing crazy far in advance because you can typ­i­cally find a week­end that works for both you and your venue. How­ever, if your venue doesn’t do more than one wed­ding per day or even week­end, then you may have a lit­tle more trou­ble find­ing a week­end in the near future. If you want it on a spe­cific date, then we would say to go ahead and book early so you can be sure to get that date. A good rule of thumb is to book at least a year in advance!
  1. What if there’s a hur­ri­cane the day of my wedding?
Waterfront Wedding Venue Virginia Beach Lesner Inn (10).jpgThis is another ques­tion that no cou­ple wants to talk about but that you should always ask before book­ing your venue. At Lesner Inn, as long as our doors can open the show goes on! We will do every­thing in our power to make it hap­pen and make sure every­thing still goes as planned. This is gen­er­ally the pol­icy with most venues because no one ever wants to post­pone a wed­ding due to weather, but it’s always good to ask before­hand!
Right: Lia Everette Pho­tog­ra­phy
  1. Am I required to have a coordinator?
The pos­si­ble answers to this ques­tion are pretty cut and dry: yes or no. Some venues will require you to at least have a day-​of coor­di­na­tor for your wed­ding. How­ever, there will be other venues, like Lesner Inn, who do not require you to have a plan­ner or day-​of coor­di­na­tor. We do sug­gest it though, because it takes a ton of stress off of you and your fiance and will make a world of a dif­fer­ence on your wed­ding day. Lesner Inn actu­ally offers full wed­ding plan­ning and day-​of coor­di­na­tion ser­vices specif­i­cally for Lesner Inn cou­ples, so you don’t even have to work with another com­pany to coor­di­nate your wed­ding!

We know wed­ding plan­ning can be stress­ful and you some­times just don’t know the ques­tions to ask cer­tain ven­dors, but we really hope this list helps with some of the ques­tions you should ask your wed­ding venue before book­ing! If you have any more ques­tions, don’t be afraid to speak up. We would much rather cou­ples ask all of their ques­tions upfront than to be con­fused down the road!

If you have any other ques­tions about the book­ing process at Lesner Inn, feel free to con­tact us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or give us a call at 7574811122.

The Do’s & Don’ts of Hir­ing Wed­ding Pro­fes­sion­als

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!

Waterfront Wedding Venue Hampton Roads (3)Pho­tog­ra­pher
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?

Lesner Inn - Beach Ball 2017-Party-0073.jpg

Stel­lar Expo­sures Photography

Wed­ding Coor­di­na­tor
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 Photography

We 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!

For more infor­ma­tion, please reach out to our sales office at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone at 7574811122.

How to Prop­erly Thank Your Wed­ding Ven­dors!

Your wed­ding ven­dors are the pro­fes­sion­als that make your Vir­ginia Beach wed­ding come to life, and hope­fully in a way that is even bet­ter than what you hoped for! Most of these ven­dors are work­ing with you from start to fin­ish, and do every­thing they can to make sure you trust them to han­dle the details of your wed­ding. Things like answer­ing emails after office hours, sched­ul­ing an impromptu appoint­ment, or pro­vid­ing ser­vices that go above the con­tracted agree­ment are all ways that wed­ding ven­dors will go beyond the call of duty to make our clients happy. Your wed­ding ven­dors do so much to make sure you reflect on your wed­ding as the per­fect day, so show them how grate­ful you are in any of these sim­ple ways!

Leave Reviews
Think back to when you were select­ing your wed­ding ven­dors. You were prob­a­bly read­ing reviews to make sure they would be the right per­son for the job. Leav­ing reviews on wed­ding web­sites like The Knot and Wed­ding­Wire are one of the best ways to appre­ci­ate the work that your ven­dors did for you. If you don’t have accounts with either of these top wed­ding web­sites, Face­book and Google are also great places to leave reviews! This will not only bring a smile to their face, but will bring them more busi­ness in the future!

Write Thank You Cards
Hand writ­ten thank you notes are a small token of appre­ci­a­tion, no mat­ter who you’re writ­ing them to. See­ing how happy a client is after their wed­ding is so sat­is­fy­ing, and at Lesner Inn we like to dis­play all of our thank you notes as a reminder to why we love our jobs so much!

Leave Tips
Some of your wed­ding ven­dors don’t expect or require a tip, but this is always a nice ges­ture! If you’re unsure about who should be receiv­ing a tip, this blog from Bridal Guide will help you out!

Give Small Gifts
For those ven­dors who don’t accept or require tips, a small gift is a great ges­ture! One of our Lesner Inn cou­ples brought in mono­grammed san­dals for her event man­ager to wear on her wed­ding day. It was such a thought­ful gift and some­thing so easy to have made! Things like can­dles, cof­fee mugs or tum­blers, or jew­elry are also great ideas as small gifts to give your wed­ding ven­dors.

Think about how stress­ful wed­ding plan­ning is. Now think about doing it for a liv­ing! Your wed­ding ven­dors do so much to make sure that you are happy with the ser­vice they are pro­vid­ing, and deserve a lit­tle recog­ni­tion when it’s all said and done. With that being said, speak up if you feel they could be doing bet­ter! Chances are they have no idea how you are feel­ing, and would love the con­struc­tive criticism.

Work­ing at Lesner Inn — A Few of my Favorite Things

To con­clude our series about what the Lesner ladies love about work­ing at Lesner Inn, we hear from our Event & Sales Direc­tor Alexis Hio­nis. It can be hard to pin­point one thing that we love about our job, so Alexis high­lights all of her favorite things below:

Alexis Retouch 2.jpgI grad­u­ated from the Uni­ver­sity of Vir­ginia with a bachelor’s in His­tory & Soci­ol­ogy, so peo­ple always ask me “How did you end up in the wed­ding indus­try? What made you want to do this?” My answer is sim­ple. Every­thing about my job at Lesner Inn makes me happy. I’m con­stantly sur­rounded by peo­ple and things I love, so why wouldn’t I do this?

I’ll start with my cowork­ers. The team at Lesner Inn is unlike any team I’ve worked with before. I con­sider the girls I work with in the office like my sis­ters. They each hold a spe­cial place in my heart. You’ll often find us laugh­ing to tears over absolutely noth­ing, singing the Lion King Sound­track, or binge eat­ing sweets. We may share a com­mon inter­est of every­thing wed­ding, but our friend­ship goes beyond our office. And I’m lucky to have them in my life.

The loca­tion. Lesner Inn is located right on the Lynnhaven River, so every day I’m at work I’m reminded of how beau­ti­ful our home is. The view is incred­i­ble. And the sun­sets are breath­tak­ing. When things become hec­tic at work, it’s nice to take a moment on our Sun­set Deck and appre­ci­ate where I live and where I work. Not many peo­ple can say the same, so I feel #blessed.

The ven­dors. Or bet­ter yet, my frien­dors. The Hamp­ton Road’s wed­ding indus­try is large, and I’m for­tu­nate to have so many friends in the indus­try. We con­nect each week­end to work sim­i­lar clients’ wed­dings. And we team up through­out the year to host open houses and cre­ate styl­ized shoots. They’ve even sup­ported me through the start of my non­profit, riseVB, and my fundrais­ing ven­tures with Beach Ball.

The icing on the cake for me is see­ing every­thing come to life on the wed­ding day. My rela­tion­ships with my clients grow through­out the plan­ning process. I become so fond of their story – how they met, how they fell in love… all of the good stuff. But there’s some­thing about the way they look at each other when they’re stand­ing at the arch that gives me all the feels. And I wouldn’t trade that in for the world.

To become another rea­son why we love our jobs so much, send us an email at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so we can help you plan your per­fect Vir­ginia Beach wed­ding!

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