Work­ing at Lesner Inn — Unique Details

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:

Cayleen Retouch 1.jpgWhen 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)!


Above: Luke & Ash­ley Photography

We love being a part of the plan­ning process with our clients, so send us an email at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to see how we can make your Lesner Inn wed­ding stand out from the rest!

Wed­ding High­lights: Becca & Billy 12.2.2017

Becca & Billy tied the knot on Decem­ber 2, 2017 on Lesner Inn’s famous Sun­set Deck, while over­look­ing the Lynnhaven River. They were a DREAM cou­ple! We loved get­ting to know them dur­ing the plan­ning process & espe­cially loved how per­fect for each other they are. Not only were they so sweet, but the love from their friends & fam­ily sur­round­ing them was so evi­dent through­out the entire cel­e­bra­tion as well. We know you’ll smile as big as we did while read­ing Becca & Billy’s responses about their Lesner Inn wed­ding!

Waterfront-Wedding-Ceremony-Lesner-Inn-Virginia-Beach-Stellar-Exposures-Photography.jpgHow & when did you meet?

We met dur­ing grad school at Stony Brook Uni­ver­sity about 5 12 years ago now. He was in PT school, and I was in PA school but we had an over­lap­ping anatomy class the first sum­mer of school and started hang­ing out and the rest is his­tory!

We love a good story! How did you get engaged? (This is so thought­ful & well planned, great job Billy!)

We had a week­end planned to stay out in the east­ern part of Long Island near the winer­ies (we had done the same thing the year prior as it’s one of our favorite places), but this year he drove us back through Stony Brook (which is on the way) where we first met and pro­posed on the beach out­side of his old house where we used to spend a lot of time together. Then, he sur­prised me by hav­ing my par­ents come into town from Vir­ginia Beach, so we spent the week­end with both of our fam­i­lies cel­e­brat­ing our engage­ment!

Why did you pick Lesner Inn for your venue?

My cousins got mar­ried at the Lesner Inn about 7 years ago, and I fell in love with the venue at their wed­ding. After we got engaged, I knew that I wanted to get mar­ried there as well. I’m a huge beach/​water lover and the set­ting and view that the Lesner Inn offers is just incred­i­ble! One of my favorite parts of the venue is that you can have your cer­e­mony out­side on the water, and then walk inside for the recep­tion rather than hav­ing your guests have to travel!


What out­side ven­dors did you use & why did you choose them?

I LOVED all of our ven­dors! We used a lot of the Lesner Inn pre­ferred ven­dors who I was extremely happy with but then our DJ, Tay­lor Hay­cox and video­g­ra­pher, DSP, were out­side ven­dors. Tay­lor was actu­ally rec­om­mended to us by our cousin’s friend, and I am so grate­ful for that because he was absolutely per­fect and all of our guests were rav­ing about him after. We found our video­g­ra­pher on Wed­ding­Wire, and his reviews were all great as well as his pric­ing. He did an amaz­ing job and again we are so pleased with how it all turned out.

Virginia-Beach-Winter-Budget-Wedding-Lesner-Inn-Greenery-Bouquet-Stellar-Exposures-Photography.jpgWhat was your vision for your wed­ding day & did it change through­out the process? If so, how?

Billy and I both wanted our wed­ding day to be fairly sim­ple. I wanted the color scheme and decor to be very neu­tral with lots of white flow­ers and green­ery. We went with a dusty blue for the brides­maid dresses which I thought went well with hav­ing our wed­ding in Decem­ber. It also fit into the water­front venue vibe. We pretty much stayed with our vision the entire time with only a few minor changes as we got fur­ther into plan­ning. The nice thing about the Lesner Inn (par­tic­u­larly the Sun­set Deck) is that the scenery is already so nat­u­rally pretty that we didn’t worry about doing much else for our decor. Look­ing back on the pho­tos, we are so happy with how it all turned out!

We always love dif­fer­ent dessert bars. What made you choose to do a donut bar?

Billy was actu­ally the mas­ter­mind behind the donut bar! He loves donuts and wanted to do some­thing dif­fer­ent for our desserts! We still had the tra­di­tional cake, but I think all of our guests loved the donuts the most!

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How did you pick your first dance song & why did you pick it?

We both love Ed Sheeran (espe­cially me) and the first time we heard Per­fect together we knew that we wanted to do that for our song. We really didn’t even debate about any other songs because we felt that one describes us so well and the music is so beau­ti­ful.

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Are there any funny or silly moments from your wed­ding day or the plan­ning process that stand out to you?

I remem­ber at the end of the night walk­ing through the sparklers and it dawn­ing on me how flam­ma­ble my hair was after all of the hair spray, and then Billy went to dip me and acci­den­tally almost dropped me back­wards into the flames. Luck­ily we recov­ered well and my hair didn’t catch on fire haha.

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What advice do you have for other cou­ples plan­ning their wed­ding?

I would say to just keep things sim­ple, go with your gut and don’t stress over the small details! The day goes by so quickly and you really have to soak in every moment because it’s gone in a sec­ond!

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We are SO glad that Becca’s hair didn’t catch on fire haha, that def­i­nitely would have been a first! Becca & Billy really did give the best advice for other cou­ples to take in. Try­ing not to stress is much eas­ier said than done for the biggest day of your life, but the details that seem so big dur­ing the plan­ning process won’t be the things that you really cher­ish after it’s all said & done. So, try not to worry, take in every sec­ond, & enjoy your big day!

If you are inter­ested in hav­ing a wed­ding like Becca & Billy’s at Lesner Inn, 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.

Pho­tos by Stel­lar Expo­sures Pho­tog­ra­phy!

Work­ing at Lesner Inn — Cre­at­ing Con­nec­tions

We’re kick­ing off this Mon­day by shar­ing another Lesner Inn lady’s per­spec­tive on work­ing at Lesner Inn! Lind­sey Bas­night, Event & Sales Man­ager, shares that what she loves most is cre­at­ing con­nec­tions with cou­ples through­out the wed­ding & event plan­ning process! More on her thoughts below:

Lindsey Retouch 1.jpgWork­ing at Lesner Inn for the past year and a half has been filled with beau­ti­ful views, fun cowork­ers, won­der­ful clients and lots and lots of cake! The event plan­ning busi­ness has allowed me to grow cre­atively & pro­fes­sion­ally and I couldn’t be more grate­ful for the oppor­tu­nity that I have at Lesner Inn.

While there are many aspects that I love about this pro­fes­sion, my favorite part is that I have been lucky enough to meet and con­nect with so many dif­fer­ent clients. From the first email, tour­ing, and all the meet­ings we have before the big day, I am able to get to know so many brides, grooms, and even some­times the par­ents of the cou­ple! The wed­ding plan­ning process is such a happy, fun, and some­times stress­ful time for these cou­ples, so being able to meet with them dur­ing this time and help their wed­ding come together is so ful­fill­ing.

I always look for­ward to meet­ings because it’s also a time to catch up with the cou­ple about every­thing that has been going on in their lives dur­ing this excit­ing time. Once all the plan­ning is com­plete the big day finally arrives, I am able to see all the spe­cial moments shared between the cou­ple and their friends and fam­i­lies, which makes the job that much more sat­is­fy­ing!

To meet with Lind­sey, or any of our Event & Sales Man­agers about plan­ning your wed­ding or event, email us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

Work­ing at Lesner Inn — A Small Part of Their Big Day

On a more per­sonal note from our typ­i­cal blog posts, the ladies at Lesner Inn wanted to share with every­one what each of us loves most about our job. Our newest Event & Sales Man­ager, Eliz­a­beth Bai­ley, shares that what she loves most about work­ing at Lesner Inn is being a part of even the small­est por­tion of someone’s wed­ding day. More on her thoughts below:

Lesner Inn -3-14.jpgWhen I first started col­lege, I knew 100% that I wanted to be a teacher. As my first semes­ter started, I was ecsta­tic because I was tak­ing my first teach­ing course! After the first day of classes, I was a lit­tle dis­cour­aged because it just was not what I was expect­ing, but I was deter­mined to keep going. Well, through­out the semes­ter, I real­ized that teach­ing just wasn’t for me, but I did real­ize that I loved coor­di­nat­ing events through my Recre­ation and Leisure class I was also tak­ing. From then on out, I knew I was going to be an event coor­di­na­tor.

Skip to my job at Lesner Inn, which is amaz­ing!! It is my first job out of col­lege and I could not have asked for a bet­ter way to start my career. I love the envi­ron­ment that I work in, but I mostly love how I get to be just a small por­tion of someone’s biggest day of their life. I have the oppor­tu­nity to be with them through almost the entire plan­ning process, rec­om­mend ven­dors, help plan their décor, and see their big day come to life, and it’s what makes my career so much fun! Do I con­nect with some cou­ples more than oth­ers? Of course, that’s just because of who they are and who I am, but I still love get­ting to be a part of their wed­ding day. The amount of stress I see through­out the plan­ning process is over­come by so much joy on the wed­ding day, and the fact that I get to be a part of mak­ing that joy hap­pen, is beyond mea­sur­able.

It’s almost funny to look back and think that I could have been a teacher and expe­ri­enced a dif­fer­ent type of joy, but the hap­pi­ness that I get from see­ing the cou­ples on the biggest day of their lives is what I LOVE. The first kiss as new­ly­weds, the father/​daughter dance, the cake smash­ing, all of that brings the biggest smile to my face because I had the oppor­tu­nity to be a small por­tion of their big day!

If you’d like to see how we can be just a small part of your big day, please email us at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Let’s Talk Bud­get­ing

One of the most com­mon issues that we have when dis­cussing wed­ding bud­gets with poten­tial clients is the fact that they haven’t edu­cated them­selves on what a wed­ding can actu­ally cost. A wed­ding is usu­ally one of the first big invest­ments that you & your fiancé will make together. It requires as much research & bud­get­ing as it does to pur­chase a home! Before you give poten­tial ven­dors a call to help you host a two hun­dred per­son wed­ding for $5,000, sit down with your fiancé to answer these impor­tant bud­get­ing ques­tions.

Budget Friendly Wedding Venue Virginia Beach (4).jpgWho do I want to expe­ri­ence this with most?
Before throw­ing a ran­dom fig­ure out there for your wed­ding bud­get, you MUST sit down with your fiancé & put together a guest list. This list should include every­one you absolutely can­not cel­e­brate your mar­riage with­out! You should even have a sec­ond list of peo­ple that you may want to invite if your bud­get allows for it, or if peo­ple on your “A list” can’t make it. There is no shame in hav­ing a B list!

Right: Christina Vanta Pho­tog­ra­phy

When do I want to say “I do” to the love of my life?
Most venues & cater­ing facil­i­ties will have a required food & bev­er­age min­i­mum that you need to reach on spe­cific days of the week, months of the year, & times of day. At Lesner Inn, your food & bev­er­age min­i­mum can be sig­nif­i­cantly less in the months of Jan­u­ary, Feb­ru­ary, March & Novem­ber com­pared to any other month of the year. How­ever, keep in mind when select­ing your date that Sat­ur­day evenings are the most cov­eted day & time for a wed­ding recep­tion, so the min­i­mum require­ments are going to be higher than they would on a Fri­day or Sun­day!

Where do we want to say our vows & cel­e­brate with our clos­est friends & fam­ily?
Between, food, bev­er­ages, favors, desserts, & décor there is a lot to con­sider when adding another name to your guest list. To cre­ate a more edu­cated bud­get, find out what your favorite venues offer & at what cost. If the cost per per­son of your wed­ding venue or cater­ing com­pany doesn’t match up with what you were expect­ing, don’t be afraid to ask how you can cus­tomize their menu to fit your needs. If you don’t want to offer a bar, speak up! As long as you are reach­ing their min­i­mum for your selected date & time it doesn’t mat­ter how you get there!


Above: Daissy Tor­res Photography

What do we need to make our wed­ding day per­fect for OUR story?
A lot of peo­ple for­get about the details that go into plan­ning a wed­ding. We typ­i­cally sug­gest bud­get­ing at least $5,000 for things like cake, flo­rals, DJ, & pho­tog­ra­pher. Of course the total cost of these ven­dors can be more or less, but it all depends on your vision. Lesner Inn is a one stop shop for food, bev­er­age, much of cou­ples favorite décor, wed­ding coor­di­na­tion & even desserts. We also have pre­ferred ven­dors who offer dis­counts for cou­ples who book with us if our ser­vices don’t quite ful­fill every­thing that you & your fiancé want on your wed­ding day!

Will you help us make this day every­thing we want it to be?
After sit­ting down with your fiancé about the who, what, where, & when, talk to both of your fam­i­lies to find out if they are will­ing to con­tribute to your wed­ding cel­e­bra­tion. If so, get a dol­lar amount so that you will know what you & your fiancé will be respon­si­ble for, & how much room is left in your bud­get to add that donut bar that you really wanted!

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Above: Stel­lar Expo­sures Photography

Cre­at­ing a wed­ding bud­get after edu­cat­ing your­self on what you expect for your wed­ding day will make the whole plan­ning process far less dif­fi­cult & scary! If you’d pre­fer an expert opin­ion over try­ing to gues­ti­mate a cost by your­self, be pre­pared to answer some of the above ques­tions for your wed­ding pro­fes­sion­als. We want to make sure we are giv­ing you the most accu­rate infor­ma­tion to help you cre­ate the wed­ding of your dreams WITH­OUT break­ing the bank!

Con­tact one of our sales man­agers today to see how we can help with your bud­get wed­ding!

Fea­ture Guest: Water­ford Event Rentals

We are total fanat­ics when it comes to blog­ging about the wed­ding indus­try & giv­ing our own insight, but we also love to give some insight from other ven­dors who spe­cial­ize in dif­fer­ent aspects of wed­dings. We want you to get to know the whole pack­age when it comes to plan­ning or design­ing your wed­ding, so we have asked Water­ford Event Rentals to be a fea­tured guest on today’s blog! Sit back & read about all of the won­der­ful things they have to say about their side of the indus­try!

Wedding-Decor-Boho-Chic-Lesner-Inn-Virginia-Beach.jpgOf every­thing you have avail­able to rent, what would you say would help spruce up a wed­ding recep­tion the most & why?

As lit­tle as it seems, nap­kins are a huge part of wed­ding décor! May sound silly, but they’re in every pic­ture of the table-​scape & can add a pop of color, fun print or just a lit­tle tex­ture to the table. Nap­kins are an easy, bud­get friendly addi­tion that can make a dif­fer­ence, even if the client is using linen that their venue pro­vides!

Right: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy

What items do you pro­vide for clients to rent?

We are a full ser­vice linen rental com­pany that spe­cial­izes in all­l­lll things linens! We of course offer the basics, but we have a big selec­tion of spe­cialty & even cus­tom print linens. We’re always will­ing to order in some­thing new! Not only do we spe­cial­ize in linens, but we also rent chairs & plate charg­ers. We have gold, mahogany & white chi­avari chairs, as well as white resin fold­ing chairs. We also have both resin & glass beaded charg­ers. We are cur­rently expand­ing our inven­tory, so stay tuned for our newest addi­tions!

Would you say chair sashes or cov­ers are nec­es­sary?

Chair cov­ers & sashes are def­i­nitely impor­tant, but totally not a must have! We may think dif­fer­ently though ;) Let’s say there are 15 tables & 150 guests. A table linen will only be on 15 of the tables, while a chair sash will be on 150 chairs. Makes such a big­ger impact to the room!

Have you seen a trend in a spe­cific type or color of linen?

All the neu­trals! We see a ton of ivory, blush & gold… but we’re totally not mad about it! Such a roman­tic color scheme that doesn’t seem like it will ever go out of style. Add a pop of sequins in there & call it a day!


Above: David Cham­pagne Photography

Blush-Boho-Wedding-Trend-Lesner-Inn-Virginia-Beach-Wedding-Venue.jpgWhat is your favorite part about wed­dings?

Hard­est ques­tion ever… but we LOVE see­ing the room trans­form! Walk­ing into a com­pletely empty venue & walk­ing out a few hours later with light­ing, linens, flo­rals, music, etc., it’s such a sur­real feel­ing. Know­ing that Water­ford has made a small impact in someone’s BIG day is such an amaz­ing feel­ing. Def­i­nitely will never get old!

Left: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy

We couldn’t agree more! We love see­ing our wed­ding venue trans­form into each couple’s dream & see their eyes grow wide when they see their designs come to life. We adore Water­ford Event Rentals & work with them all through­out the year, so if you love what you read today, con­tact them directly or ask us how to get in touch with them so we can help your wed­ding vision come true!

Lesner Inn’s Annual Open House: Fea­tur­ing 2018 Wed­ding Trends

Just like fash­ion, wed­ding trends are ever chang­ing & some­times it is hard to know if some­thing is hot or “so 2017”. The team at Lesner Inn wants to save you the leg­work & give you the top trends for this com­ing sea­son, straight from us in the know! We were able to show­case many of these trends at our open house on Jan­u­ary 28th, but in case you missed it, here are some inspir­ing pho­tos to show why you should incor­po­rate these trends into your upcom­ing wed­ding!

No longer for just the kitchen & bath­room, mar­ble is mak­ing its way into the wed­ding scene in a big way! From charg­ers to flo­ral vases, there are many ways to incor­po­rate mar­ble into your tablescape. You can even break out of the box & incor­po­rate mar­bled swirls into fon­dant for your cake or back­grounds for your invi­ta­tions! We decided to use a mar­bled linen from Water­ford Event Rentals, & even had mar­bled menu cards made from Paper Dolls Design for the place set­tings!

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These break­fast treats aren’t going any­where any­time soon. Cou­ples began to offer dough­nuts as an eco­nom­i­cal dessert option a few years ago & it is still going strong. Whether you dis­play these on a dough­nut wall or on per­son­al­ized plat­ters, guests will go nuts for sug­ary sweets! Add edi­ble glit­ter as a sweet & sparkly treat!

Bold Flo­rals
Rose bou­quets may be a clas­sic, but flo­rals with bold & excit­ing col­ors are being seen more often in the wed­ding scene! Add a pop of color with a pro­tea or ranun­cu­lus bloom & let your flow­ers do the talk­ing! Win­ter berries were added to this bou­quet from Wan­der­ing Petal for a touch of some­thing unique!


Deep Reds & Roman­tic Tones
For that roman­tic feel, you can’t go wrong with a deep red to com­pli­ment nat­ural tones. We have seen this color pop up in linens & brides­maid dress options & can’t get enough of it. We com­pli­mented our mar­bled & gray linens with bur­gundy nap­kins & bold red flo­rals!



We have to say that this is our favorite so far. Remem­ber the trendy wooden wel­come signs of the past? In 2018, you should be wel­com­ing your guests into your wed­ding with a trans­par­ent acrylic wel­come sign or mail­ing them a mod­ern laser engraved clear invi­ta­tion. We used trans­par­ent acrylic stands to hold up dec­o­ra­tive man­zan­i­tas, but another great idea is using a trans­par­ent table for your sweet­heart or cake tables. You can even spice these up by putting uplight­ing under­neath of them!

Cop­pers & Golds
This might be linked to the Moscow Mule craze, but we don’t hate it! Cop­per flat­ware, cop­per cake top­pers, cop­per jew­elry, cop­per table num­bers, cop­per chargers…the oppor­tu­ni­ties are end­less! Of course, gold tones in gen­eral aren’t going any­where!!


Wreaths & Hang­ing Décor
View More: just your mama’s door décor any­more! We are see­ing so many flo­ral hoops & wreaths, adorn­ing wed­ding arches, entrance­ways, & even see them sus­pended above tables. These can be full of sim­ple green­ery or they can have elab­o­rate flo­ral focal points. We love what Wan­der­ing Petal did with this hang­ing piece over our head table!

We are so happy that we were able to show­case many of these 2018 trends at our open house! With the help of some of our favorite ven­dors, were were able to demon­strate what a real wed­ding with us would look like! As always, we would love to meet any of you newly engaged cou­ples! Whether you’re local or live across the coun­try we hope to have the oppor­tu­nity to be a part of your wed­ding day! Give us a call at (757) 4811122 or send us an email at This email address is being pro­tected from spam­bots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more infor­ma­tion about our wed­ding & recep­tion ser­vices!

Thanks to Stel­lar Expo­sures Pho­tog­ra­phy for doc­u­ment­ing our 2018 Open House!

Thought­ful & Even Use­ful Favors

One of the many perks of going to a wed­ding are the favors that you get to take home. A lit­tle thank you from the cou­ple is super sweet, but it can be stress­ful on the new­ly­weds if they don’t know what to give or how to keep the cost low. To help with some ideas, we’ve put together a list of five thought­ful & even use­ful favors that your guests will love & won’t break the bank!

Koozies Koozie_wedding_Favors_Lesner_Inn_Virginia_Beach_Reception_Venue.jpg
We’re sure you’ve seen these at a wed­ding you’ve been to recently. They’re a huge hit with the guests & most likely will be used again! These work for both bot­tled & canned bev­er­ages, so you don’t have to worry about only some of your guests enjoy­ing them. Best of all they can be pur­chased online at a fair price if you order them in bulk!
Right: Lee Yen Pho­tog­ra­phy

Who doesn’t love an extra pair of shades? If you’re hav­ing an out­door wed­ding, you can order cus­tom sun­glasses with your name & date on the side for your guests to wear. For most web­sites, it only takes a few min­utes to cus­tomize the sun­glasses & they get shipped right to your home!

This one might seem a lit­tle pecu­liar at first, but it is such a unique idea! To cut back on cost you can make these favor your­self! All you need to do is put ground cof­fee in lit­tle bags & time them off with a tag. Try com­ing up with some­thing fun to make your guests smile when they go to use the cof­fee after the wed­ding like, “Love is brew­ing”. You can even make a few bags with decaf­feinated cof­fee for those peo­ple who don’t drink caf­feine!

Below: Kelly Marie Photos

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Candy bar
Nor­mally, cou­ples will have the tra­di­tional cake & maybe a few other desserts for the recep­tion, but the candy bar is becom­ing increas­ingly pop­u­lar as not only a dessert, but as favors. This is prob­a­bly one of the eas­i­est & most cost effec­tive favors that you can give your guests. All you have to do is buy the candy & to-​go bags, use a few glass jars & bowls, & there you have it! It’s an easy, fun, & inex­pen­sive favor that keeps giv­ing even after they leave the wed­ding! To make it even eas­ier, Lesner Inn can cre­ate your candy bar for you!

These lit­tle plants are so trendy right now! Every­one loves extra décor for their house, so this is a per­fect favor for your guests that won’t go to waste. You can save some money by get­ting faux suc­cu­lents or you can get live ones for a cou­ple more bucks!

Below: Erika Mills Photography


These are just a few ideas for dif­fer­ent, use­ful, & low-​cost wed­ding favors for your guests. You will love how easy & cost effec­tive this gifts are, & your guests will love that they get to con­tin­u­ously use them after they leave the party! There are a lot more options if you’re up for hav­ing a non-​traditional favor, so just keep look­ing or head over to our Pin­ter­est page to get some more ideas!

Wed­ding Vocab­u­lary Guide

We at Lesner Inn, we know that some­times wed­ding plan­ning can get stress­ful & a bit con­fus­ing since you & your fiance prob­a­bly haven’t planned a wed­ding before. Since it may seem like we are speak­ing a com­pletely dif­fer­ent lan­guage, Lesner Inn made a glos­sary of some of the most com­monly used wed­ding indus­try words to help slim down that con­fu­sion between you & your ven­dors!

Bus­tle: After you’ve flaunted your train dur­ing your water­front cer­e­mony & for por­trait shots, it’s time to pin that train up & dance the night away! “Bus­tle” is just a fancy way to say that you’re pin­ning your dress’ train up, so that it doesn’t drag on the floor & get dam­aged.

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Above: Stel­lar Expo­sures Photography

Cake Cut­ting Ser­vice: After the cer­e­mo­nial cake cut­ting by the cou­ple, your caterer will cut the rest of the cake & serve it to the guests to enjoy. Lesner Inn includes cake cut­ting ser­vices & even lets you decide whether you would like to dis­play the sliced pieces of cake, or if you would like our staff to pass them to your guests.

Cake Cut­ting Set: This one is so sim­ple, yet can be so con­fus­ing. The cake cut­ting set is the knife & serv­ing piece that you use to cut & serve dur­ing the cer­e­mo­nial cake cut­ting for you & your spouse. Lesner Inn has a house set for you to use, but some cou­ples pre­fer to pur­chase their own or even will use the ones their par­ents used on their wed­ding day!

Charg­ers: These may look like fancy plates, but they are actu­ally used as table­top dec­o­ra­tion & are placed at the table set­ting before china are put on top of them. Don’t be the one who acci­den­tally takes this plate up to the buf­fet… talk about social sui­cide.

Cock­tail Hour: This is the period of time (not always an hour) between your cer­e­mony & recep­tion where your guests have an oppor­tu­nity to min­gle with one another & enjoy cock­tails & hors d’oeuvres. It is most com­mon that the new­ly­weds will take wed­ding pho­tos dur­ing this time with their fam­ily & bridal party before being announced into the recep­tion.

Lesner Inn -4-4.jpgDay of Coor­di­na­tor: A day of coor­di­na­tor (not to be con­fused with a wed­ding plan­ner) is basi­cally a wed­ding assis­tant who takes over once the wed­ding is a few weeks away. The coordinator’s main focus is to con­firm the details that you have planned with your ven­dors & to tie up any loose ends. They will also be there for rehearsal & the day-​of your wed­ding to make sure every­thing from set-​up to over­all exe­cu­tion goes smoothly. Lesner Inn offers day-​of coor­di­na­tion & wed­ding design ser­vices to our cou­ples, so feel free to reach out to us for more details!

Left: Brit­tany Sue Pho­tog­ra­phy

Food & Bev­er­age Min­i­mum: This is the amount of money that you are required to spend on all food & bev­er­age items. This amount varies from venue to venue but is always the amount that you will be meet­ing, & pos­si­bly exceed­ing, for any sort of food & bev­er­ages for your guests.

Hors D’oeuvres: This is just a fancy word for appe­tiz­ers. They are made for every­one to enjoy dur­ing your cock­tail hour, which Lesner Inn includes the hor d’oeuvres for in our base pric­ing!

Matron of Honor: Most peo­ple know that brides have a maid of honor & grooms have a best man, but brides can also have a matron of honor. This brides­maid is just as spe­cial as your maid of honor, but the title changes since she is already mar­ried!

Mem­ory Table: Just like any other side table, this one is com­pletely optional for the cou­ple. This table nor­mally holds pic­ture frames of loved ones who have passed away, so they can be remem­bered on your spe­cial day.

Toast: These are short speeches to the bride & groom gen­er­ally done by the best man & maid/​maitron of honor. Of course, there are oth­ers who can do them like the father of the bride, sib­lings of the bride or groom, or any­one who is spe­cial to you! Regard­less of who speaks, toasts are gen­er­ally done with cham­pagne which Lesner Inn pro­vides for each guest!

Wedding Toasts Champagne Virginia Beach Lesner Inn Waterfront Budget.jpg

Above: Vin­lu­ain Photography

Venue Man­ager: A venue man­ager is there the day-​of your wed­ding to make sure all runs smoothly with the venue & the food & bev­er­age side of things, if they do in house cater­ing like Lesner Inn does. They will make sure your floor plan is cor­rect, any sort of décor items rented through the venue are set, & that the time­line for all food & bev­er­age is fol­lowed accord­ingly. At Lesner Inn, you will always have a venue man­ager on site the day of your wed­ding, but they do not act as coor­di­na­tors with your other ven­dors or per­sonal details.

Wed­ding Plan­ner: Your wed­ding plan­ner will be there through­out the entire process from choos­ing your venue & ven­dors to say­ing “I do”. They will help with design­ing your wed­ding, choos­ing ven­dors & final­iz­ing con­tracts with them, & set­ting up & man­ag­ing the details of your wed­ding on the day of. They will also be there the day-​of from start to fin­ish to make sure things go smoothly & that every­thing is han­dled cor­rectly. Lesner Inn offers wed­ding plan­ning to all of our soonly weds, so if you’re look­ing to sit back through the plan­ning process & have a stress free wed­ding day, then our wed­ding plan­ning ser­vice is the way to go!

We want to make the wed­ding plan­ning process as stress free as pos­si­ble, so we hope this glos­sary of “wed­ding words” helps out! Of course, there are many other terms we use that may be a lit­tle con­fus­ing, so just reach out to us if you need some insight!

Bud­get Tips for your Big Day!

We know that most engaged cou­ples are on a bud­get. Of course, the bud­get varies from cou­ple to cou­ple but we see that most cou­ples tend to have a num­ber that they would like to stick below. With that in mind, we have come up with some handy tips to make sure you & your fiancé have a beau­ti­ful wed­ding, but stay within the bud­get!

A major way to cut the cost of your wed­ding is to cut your guest list. I know, I know, you want every fam­ily mem­ber & every friend you’ve ever met to come spend this spe­cial day with you, but this is one of the eas­i­est ways to cut costs if you’re try­ing to stay within a bud­get. You can also look into hav­ing your wed­ding dur­ing the off-​peak sea­son. There are plenty of days in the early win­ter & spring months that would be beau­ti­ful for your big day! Off-​peak months dif­fer for each venue, but at Lesner Inn our off-​peak months are Jan­u­ary – March & Novem­ber, so start think­ing out­side of those “nor­mal” wed­ding months!

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Eliz­a­beth Friske Photography

Another idea for cut­ting costs & stay­ing within your bud­get is to use in-​season flow­ers. Talk with your florist to see which flow­ers match your col­ors, but are still in sea­son. You never know, you may be sur­prised with some gor­geous flow­ers you never heard of! You can also dis­cuss using more green­ery than flow­ers for cen­ter­pieces & arch décor. Green­ery is gor­geous & is a per­fect go-​to when you want to cut flow­ers, but still have stun­ning designs!

Noth­ing is trend­ing more right now in the wed­ding indus­try than a DIY wed­ding for cou­ples with a wed­ding bud­get. We know that you obvi­ously can’t DIY every­thing, but there are a few things that you can DIY to keep costs low. Using wine bot­tles as vases for your cen­ter­pieces can be so cute & inex­pen­sive (try dip­ping them in paint or glit­ter to match your color scheme)! DIY the seat­ing chart or wel­come mes­sage by find­ing an old win­dow, mir­ror, or chalk­board to write on. If you’re up for it, you can make all of your own signs so your guests are turn­ing every cor­ner to see your cre­ativ­ity! These are only a cou­ple of ideas, so hop onto our Pin­ter­est board to see what other DIY projects catch your eye for your wed­ding day!

Caitlin Ger­res Pho­tog­ra­phy

Want pretty sta­tion­ary but your eyes grew wide at the cost? Think about mak­ing your own Save the Dates & Invi­ta­tions! This can be a super fun way to pull out your artsy side & cus­tomize your sta­tion­ary. Don’t think you’re cre­ative enough to make your own? There are plenty of web­sites that offer tem­plates that you can use for a much smaller dol­lar amount than going through a com­pany. You even get the perk of print­ing your own sta­tion­ary & not have to wait for it in the mail! Save even more money by hav­ing your guests RSVP on your wed­ding web­site or an app instead of pay­ing for all of paper & postage for the responses!

Reach Out to Tal­ented Friends & Fam­ily
If you have any friends or fam­ily mem­bers that are tal­ented in pho­tog­ra­phy, bak­ing cakes, or some­thing else related to a wed­ding, you can keep costs low by hir­ing them instead of a pro­fes­sional! On the con­trary, we know you want to save money but just keep in mind that if you’re super picky about some­thing (which you’re allowed to be, because it is your wed­ding), then you may want to leave the ven­dor work to the pro­fes­sion­als. Of course, if you’re totally con­fi­dent in your friend or fam­ily mem­ber because they’re spec­tac­u­lar at what they do, then def­i­nitely ask them to help out to save some money! At Lesner Inn, we have a pre­ferred ven­dors list that we give to each of our cou­ples, but we always make sure you know that you can use whomever you’d like for their ven­dors, so a friend or fam­ily mem­ber is always an option!

You may not be able to use all of these ideas, but you can use one or two or even think of some of your own to stay within your bud­get! There are so many ways that you can save a few bucks but still have a beau­ti­ful wed­ding. The most impor­tant part is that no mat­ter if you go over bud­get, take some “tra­di­tional” things out to save money, or don’t have pro­fes­sional ven­dors, at the end of the day, you get to marry your best friend & that’s what you will remem­ber the most!

Best of 2017!

We’ll be hon­est. We think that we have the best job on Earth because every day is a party at Lesner Inn! Every Mon­day, we meet to recap the weekend’s events & have been keep­ing a run­ning list of some of the most mem­o­rable wed­dings of 2017. At the end of each year, we sit down to go over all of these lists & pick our favorites to share with you, our past, present, & future couples!

We hope you enjoy scrolling through some of the most beau­ti­ful, touch­ing & even com­i­cal moments from Lesner Inn over the past year!

Best Some­thing Old

As the say­ing goes, you must have some­thing old, some­thing new, some­thing bor­rowed & some­thing blue on your wed­ding day. Court­ney nailed it with her some­thing old by alter­ing her mother’s wed­ding dress for her own wed­ding. Her mom did not get to see the dress until the day of & the result gave us all chills!

Below: Love Sim­ply Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Some­thing Borrowed

Con­tin­u­ing along the path of some­thing old, new, bor­rowed & blue, Liz’s some­thing bor­rowed pulled at our heart strings when she wore a bracelet from each of her grand­moth­ers. We love that she tied in both sides of her fam­ily on her wed­ding day!

Below: Beth Hamil­ton Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Some­thing Blue

Eliz­a­beth made sure not to for­get a sin­gle bit of blue on her wed­ding day & we loved her take on a coastal wed­ding. They even kicked off the day with blue cham­pagne!

Below: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best-Cake-Waterfront-Venue-Lee-Yen-photographyBest Cake

This amaz­ing cre­ation by Whipped Up by Mimi quite lit­er­ally takes the cake for the year! We see so many dif­fer­ent styles of cake but we were head over antlers for this rus­tic naked cake. Oh & those antlers…they’re pure white choco­late!

Right: Lee Yen Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best Cake Smash

Tim & Kate cracked us up from day one & that didn’t stop after they said “I do”! These two have such a laid back style & didn’t feel the pres­sure of wed­ding plan­ning one bit. Kate clearly wasn’t wor­ried about what Tim’s white shirt would look like after she smashed cake into his face, and we found it hys­ter­i­cal!

Below: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Dessert Alternative

Amanda & Surge aren’t big cake peo­ple so, instead of a tra­di­tional wed­ding cake, they brought in Con­fetti Gelato! We knew that we loved this sweet cou­ple but, when they told us that they were skip­ping the cake & going for gelato instead, we knew that they were meant to roll with the coor­di­na­tors at Lesner Inn!

Below: Wasin French Pho­tog­ra­phy


View More: Cake Topper

Justin & Ariel weren’t mess­ing around when they picked out their cake top­per! We got such a kick out of this one that we had to award it best cake top­per of 2017!

Left: Ash­ley Peter­son Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best Bridal Bouquet

Kelly Gish, you are the florist of the year with this incred­i­ble bou­quet! We loved Nel­son & Nicole’s color palette for their wed­ding & the flow­ers were just the cherry on top of a beau­ti­ful day.
Check out those small pops of pur­ple
nes­tled in the arrangement!

Below: Luke & Ash­ley Photography

Best Cer­e­mony

It’s rare that a bride & groom can sur­prise us with some­thing new, but we are pretty sure that this is our first cou­ple to get mar­ried ON the water. Mor­gan & Jake sailed out into the Lynnhaven River with their imme­di­ate fam­i­lies to tie the knot while their guests enjoyed cock­tail hour in the Water­side Deck. This beau­ti­ful moment is def­i­nitely the most unique cer­e­mony of 2017!

Below: Lee Yen Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best First Look

Mike, you HANDS DOWN had the best reac­tion of any groom see­ing his bride for the first time when Alishia walked down the aisle. We are so glad Dustin Lewis cap­tured this moment!

Below: Dustin Lewis Images


View More: Kiss

The moment that we saw this photo, we knew that it had to be awarded the best kiss of 2017. We love that this grooms­men got down on his hands & knees to give Jonathan a boost to his bride!

Right: Kelly Dier Pho­tog­ra­phy

Cutest Ring Bearer & Flower Girl

Alright, so these two actu­ally weren’t from the same wed­ding but we were so taken with them that we had to award them cutest ring bearer and cutest flower girl. Kayleigh & Wayne cre­ated this “Ring Secu­rity” badge for this lit­tle guy to make sure that every­one knew what his main job was. And even though it took a lit­tle nudg­ing from their coor­di­na­tor, Kyle & Amy’s flower girl strut­ted her stuff down the aisle once she real­ized that she was the cen­ter of atten­tion!

Left: Jason Jarvis Pho­tog­ra­phy - Right: Dragon Stu­dios

Best Décor

Style Events did it again with one! Meghan & Craig had a beau­ti­ful wed­ding with long ban­quet tables, stun­ning linens from Water­ford Event Rentals & roman­tic flo­rals from Palette of Petals. Their use of cre­ative floor plans & float­ing flo­rals on the arch wins them the best décor of 2017!

Below: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Theme

We will be the first to admit that we were a lit­tle con­fused when Tim & Kate told us that theme of their wed­ding was going to be Amer­ica. But these two are the goofi­est, most fun-​loving peo­ple so we knew that we were in for a treat. They tied the knot on Memo­r­ial Day week­end & requested that all of their guests wear white with patri­otic flair, had Statue of Lib­erty cen­ter­pieces, & danced to God Bless the USA for their first dance while their guests sur­rounded them wav­ing Amer­i­can flags. Hands down, the best theme of the year!

Below: Echard Wheeler Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Sta­tionery

One of the parts of the plan­ning process that we rarely get to see is the invi­ta­tion suite. Every once in a while though, a cou­ple will bring them in so the photographer’s can snap a few pho­tos of them. We loved Nel­son & Nicole’s trendy invites with the agate tex­tured back­ground!

Right: Wasin French Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best Tra­di­tional Wedding

We see all sorts of fam­ily, reli­gious & cul­tural tra­di­tions at Lesner Inn. This year we were lucky enough to be able to learn about the Ben­gali cul­ture dur­ing Trina & Greg’s wed­ding cer­e­mony. They incor­po­rated both of their tra­di­tions into their mar­riage cer­e­mony & you can read much more about the tra­di­tions and cus­toms in their wed­ding spot­light here!

Below: Chelsea Ander­son Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Exit

Oh hello beau­ti­ful Lynnhaven River! We love when cou­ples uti­lize the water for a boat exit or entrance &, even though it was a misty day, Thomas & Lau­ren still sailed away in style. This boat exit won the best exit of 2017!

Below: Dragon Stu­dio


Best-First-Dance-Ballroom-Lesner-Inn-Virginia-Beach-Reception-Kelly-Marie-Photography Best First Dance

Tyler & Rachael’s first dance gave us all the feels & when we saw this photo from Kelly Marie, we knew that they stole the spot­light for 2017. What is bet­ter than a hand­some man in uni­form spin­ning his new wife around the dance floor?

Right: Kelly Marie Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best-Sunset-Lesner-Inn-Virginia-Beach-Winston-Veranga-Photography.jpgBest Sun­set

Lesner Inn is FAMOUS for the epic sun­sets that you can catch every evening from the venue. While there were 365 con­tenders, Jon & Andrea win the award for the best sun­set photo of 2017!

Left: Win­ston Veranga Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best Party Crowd

Every­one looks for­ward to a wed­ding for the drink­ing, danc­ing, & love. Jor­dan & Nicole’s guests were no dif­fer­ent but these guys REALLY came to party! Check out the top right photo, even Grandma got in on that open bar action!

Below: David Cham­pagne Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Dressed

This cat­e­gory is a lii­i­i­it­tle deceiv­ing, but it is going three years strong now! We aren’t quite sure what makes guests want to strip down on the dance floor, but any­one who does def­i­nitely deserves to win best dressed!

Below: Dragon Stu­dios


Best-Rainy-Wedding-Rainy-Weddings-Bryan-Myhr.jpgBest Rainy Wedding

Rain on your wed­ding day isn’t what most cou­ples hope for, but some­times Mother Nature has another idea in store for us. Kent & Haley rolled with the punches so well when it started to pour right before their cer­e­mony, but luck­ily our Sun­set Deck is cov­ered so you can still have your out­door cer­e­mony, even with a lit­tle inclement weather. Because of their pos­i­tive atti­tudes all day, they get the award for best rainy wed­ding of 2017!

Left: Bryan Myhr Pho­tog­ra­phy

Best Grooms­man Photo

Guys can be goofy… but this crew really had us gig­gling! We love that they took pos­ing into their own hands by steal­ing the bridesmaid’s bou­quets.

Below: Jason Jarvis Pho­tog­ra­phy


Best Squad Pic

Amanda & Matt got busted with their squad when the First Land­ing State Park rangers jumped in on the action. Noth­ing says a party like some flash­ing lights & sirens!

Below: Dustin Lewis Images


Best Per­sonal Touch

Jamie & Jill hid a lit­tle per­sonal touch inside of their wed­ding dresses. Here is what they told us when we asked about these blue hearts:
One thing that we decided to do was cre­ate our own lit­tle memo­ri­als for those who couldn’t be with us on our spe­cial day. Jill’s father passed away sev­eral years ago, so she cut a heart out of one of his blue shirts… and, Jamie’s grand­fa­ther had passed away in Feb­ru­ary, so she cut a heart out of one of his favorite jean jack­ets. We pinned these inside our dresses – as our some­thing old and some­thing blue.”
You can read more about their wed­ding on their wed­ding spot­light.

Below: Valerie Betz Pho­tog­ra­phy


2017 came & went so quickly, & we can­not thank the peo­ple & ven­dors we worked with this year enough for mak­ing our wed­dings such a suc­cess! We can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store, & to meet all of the won­der­ful, beau­ti­ful cou­ples who will tie the knot at Lesner Inn with us in the years to come!

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