Posted by Xplosive Entertainment on 07/22/2016

10 Key Steps to Wedding Planning at the Jersey Shore | Xplosive Entertainment

10 Key Steps to Wedding Planning at the Jersey Shore | Xplosive Entertainment

1. Pick your season

New Jersey is a spectacular state to get married in year-round! Often when someone says they are tying the knot at the shore, the instant reaction is a summer beach wedding. However, the Spring and Fall months have become more popular than the summer (avoiding heat, humidity, shore traffic, and inflated summer venue rates). The winter also serves for a perfect time to marry the one you love as the winters in Monmouth and Ocean Counties offer picturesque settings within quaintly decorated towns, snow covered fields, and often discounted venue rates.

2. Pick your reception venue

The first step in narrowing your venue selection is to make a list of your wedding day requirements. Do you need a venue that can accommodate 250 guests? Or conversely, are you planning a small intimate wedding with 75-80 guests and need a venue that isn’t requiring 150+ guests. Are you envisioning a rustic mansion setting or modern designed space? Is an outdoor patio or tent a major consideration for your cocktail hour or even full reception? Do you like the look of a country club, winery, beachfront venue, or prefer the convenience of celebrating within a hotel? (It’s possible to find venues offering a few of these characteristics under one roof). After you bullet point your wish list/need list, narrowing down your venue options are far easier. Be sure to call ahead to these wedding halls. Ask questions. Get pricing sent. Visit their website. And if you are still interested, setup a tour. You will “know” when it’s right as you tour the proper venue. Couples will “fall in love” with the right venue as they find the option that offers exactly what they were looking for.

3. Determine the ceremony location

Are you getting married at a church or temple? Do you already have an affiliation with one of these religious sanctuaries? The distance from your ceremony location to your reception is a key factor to consider. Although your wedding is YOUR day, it is important to keep your guests’ convenience in mind. If you are not tied to using a traditional church or temple, be sure to ask your reception venue about their suggestions for ceremonies. Wedding officiants can travel to any location. Most halls offer onsite wedding ceremony options. These can be indoors or outdoors (often boasting beautiful views of gardens, fountains, water, etc). Alternatively, you can find an off-site location for your ceremony near your reception venue. There are plenty of ceremony locations around the Jersey Shore towns offering beach, lake, or water front ceremonies. There are also several fantastic historic settings, park options, and floral wonderlands to explore.

4. Select the right vendors

After locking in your venue, you need to find the rest of your wedding day vendors. This list includes entertainment, photo/video, flowers, dress, wedding planner, etc. Be sure to do your homework. Only contract with professionals experienced in weddings. Make sure they clearly understand your vision. You will be spending a good sum of money in each of these categories. And, you only plan on getting married one time, therefore, you need to know the professionals you hire will be fun and easy to work with while delivering exactly what you expect for your fairytale wedding day.

5. Plan your lodging

The Jersey Shore offers a very wide range of hotel, motel, bed & breakfast, and guesthouse options. If your wedding is not taking place within a hotel, be sure to ask your wedding coordinator for a list of local and reputable accommodations. Book a block of rooms early as some venues sell our quickly (especially in peak seasons). Be sure to keep transportation in mind. Does your choice location provide shuttle service or will you need to consider hiring a service to take your guests between their hotel and the reception hall (to avoid drinking and driving).

6. Give guests ample time to RSVP and make necessary arrangements

If your wedding is taking place during a busy season or around a holiday be sure to send out save the date cards. Also send your invitations with plenty of time for your guests to RSVP. Equally as important, your guests will have to book hotel rooms, arrange transportation, find baby sitters, etc.

7. Allow yourself to enjoy the creative planning process

Wedding planning can be stressful. Don’t allow it to take over your life. Work together with your fiancé in the planning/design stages. Enjoy dinner, wine, and fun conversations while assembling your plans.

8. Enjoy a Jersey Shore photo shoot

After you book a photographer for your wedding, ask if he/she will include an “engagement session” or a “save the date session.” These are opportunities to do a professional photo shoot capturing fun casual images which you can use for your save the date cards, table numbers, sign-in book, and/or get framed for around the house or use as wedding décor. The other great thing about doing a photo shoot with your photographer prior to the wedding is that it gives you an opportunity to get to know him/her, see their real-life work, and use this as the definite test that you contracted the right professional for your day

9. Celebrate with friends and family

The big day is here! Savor every moment of it! Enjoy the food, the drinks, the dance floor, and all the excitement that you have been waiting all your life for!

10. Plan an anniversary moment

One year following your wedding go back and visit where it all took place. Have a picnic at the winery, dinner at the venue, or relax and enjoy a night’s stay at the hotel you used. Pamper yourself and relic in the euphoria of knowing your Jersey Shore wedding was the best day of your life!

Blog Author: Michael Langsner, A NJ Native who was married at a Jersey Shore venue in May 2012 and is actively involved in the Jersey shore region. Michael presently is the Vice President of Xplosive Entertainment a NJ Based Upscale DJ Entertainment Firm specializing in weddings. Michael has been involved in special events both as an entertainer and event planner/banquet director since 2002. Contact Michael with questions or comments: 732-866-1620 | 866.Xplo.Ent | michaell@xeevents.com

Photo credit:  Korbman and Company Fine Photography

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