Two months from today I will be marrying my perfect match. Beyond his good looks, quick wit and ability to keep me calm in the even the most stressful moments, Evan loves hosting parties (almost) as much as I do! We are so excited for the next step in our relationship, and we cannot wait to be with family and friends to celebrate... and celebrate...and celebrate!
I don't know what anyone expected from two people who love to entertain and have friends and family spread across the country. Of course we were going to plan celebrations for three days straight! Between Friday's Rehearsal Dinner and Welcome Party, Saturday's Ceremony and Reception and Sunday's New Years Eve Bash, we're making the most of our special weekend.
So, everyone's favorite question after, "Let me see the ring," is "How is the planning going?" I think I surprise most when I say, "GREAT!"
And it has been great! It doesn't hurt that for the last year I planned more than 40 five-star destination weddings for my job, but beyond the knowledge I gained, Knoxville has been an easy market in which to plan. I was able to call on some very talented friends from high school and college who now work in the industry, as well as utilize a few new favorites I've met along the way.
The big-picture elements like venues, menus and statement decor fell into place easily. It's been the pesky details like designing invitations, choosing a first dance song, and coordinating ceremony music that has me procrastinating and paralyzed by decisions. So, let's put it all off another day and take about the fun stuff!
If you know Evan and I, you know the weekend has to kick off with a pre-rehearsal toast with our wedding party! A quick beer before loading the bus and parading to the church for what's sure to be chaotic attempts of walking down the aisle. Once coordinated, however, the real fun will begin! Dinner with our closest friends and family at Knoxville's iconic Old City bar, Barleys, will be casual and intimate, filled with pizza and toasts (and probably a few roasts). The evening doesn't stop there - with so many guests giving up their holiday weekend to travel to Knoxville, we want to optimize our time with everyone and have rented the downtown, urban bowling alley for a Welcome Party open to all guests. We can't wait to start making introductions so everyone can get familiar and comfortable before Saturday's main event.
Let's do this! A full day of pampering prep, an intimate first look for Evan and me, and friendly photos will lead to the real reason we are all together. Evan and I are excited to be married in the Catholic Church. I'm not Catholic, but am so happy to honor Evan's faith and the sacrament of marriage. We've experienced a beautiful engagement and are confident our foundation has been prepared with the respect, faith and love needed to last a lifetime. It won't be a full mass, but will represent our future perfectly.
We have tried to keep our guests' experience a central component of the planning process. We've arranged a bus to do loops from the hotels to the church, then to the venue, and valets will ease the parking process at the reception. We've chosen a seated, family-style dinner to create a comfortable environment to start the night.
We are highlighting a few traditions, like cutting the cake and first dances, and skipping others, like the bouquet and garter tosses and speeches. We want to keep the night light-hearted and mostly about dancing once he band starts! We LOVE to dance.
We know Saturday will be a blur and over before we know it, but our union is probably the only time in our lives our favorite people will all be in the same place at the same time, so, we are asking everyone to stick around and ring in the New Year with the newlyweds! Embracing Knoxville once again, we've rented out the Sunsphere- a giant gold globe structure built for the 1980 World's Fair. It has 360 degree views through the floor to ceiling windows, so we're hoping for a clear night to enjoy the city lights and fireworks. Did I mention we love to dance? We're switching it up and having a DJ this night, so hope everyone brings 2 pairs of dancing shoes for the weekend!
I don't want to spoil all the surprises, so will leave a few details off the record. Overall, it's been a fabulous year of planning. Evan has been amazing at inputting where it matters and loving me through the rest. My mom has been my partner-in-crime from the get-go (she is where I learned my passion for event plannning, after all). And my dad has sat back and let me plan the weekend of my dreams without many questions asked.