There are two rules for every wedding: they require budgets and involve a lot of things. Wedding programs for the ceremony, escort cards, guest book, décor, toasting flutes, and the list can go on and on. Not only are there many individual items for the ceremony and reception space, each one of those items will need to be handled by someone to either set them up or take them home.
During your planning appointment, the catering event specialist will go over several details about the wedding day itself including what items they can expect you to bring to them before the wedding. We understand that you won’t have a completed list at the time of your appointment, but we will begin tracking the items you mention during the meeting. Separating items by ceremony and reception is a great place to start. As you put together a list of things to bring to the venue, ask yourself these questions about each item:
What is being brought to the ceremony or reception space?
Who is getting there?
Who is setting it up?
What is leaving the wedding and what can be discarded?
Who is it leaving with?
Each of these questions is important because it tells our team who is responsible for the item before the event and who is responsible after. These details matter when the day is already busy and there is little room for error. Can you imagine the chaos during the dinner service if someone didn’t bring the place cards?
To eliminate any missing place card stress, our team kindly asks couples celebrating at our exclusive venues to bring any client-provided items to the venue the day before to be checked in from the list on their event order. When checking items with the venue manager, the client will know if something is missing from the original list given to the venue and if it needs to be brought back later in the day or the following morning before setup begins. It also tells our team if there are additional items that were added and need to be accounted for after the reception ends. Having this level of organization helps keep track of personal property and also helps make sending items home after the event easier to manage.
There have been many Friday afternoons at Montage when couples celebrating on Saturday night have arrived with multiple vehicles of decor that they needed to setup the next day. Don’t be overwhelmed with having too much or too little – every wedding is completely unique. A couple that is hiring a decor company will have less to set up than someone providing all of their own – but they will both still have items that they will need to keep track of and make someone responsible for bringing to and from the venue.
Employ Help & Get Organized
With the couple and wedding party getting ready for the wedding itself, along with parents of the couple, getting items in place can seem a bit tricky if you can’t be in two places at once. Some couples choose to hire a professional to help. In some cases this may be a Day-of Coordinator. Other couples opt to ask family or friends. Anyone that is helping set up anything the day of the wedding will have access to the venue two hours before the start of the ceremony or reception.
It’s helpful to have a plan in place for those assisting, including a plan for where items are supposed to be or how they are supposed to look. One helpful way to keep this on track is to be sure that any boxes with items dropped off to the venue are labeled so helpers can find what they need. For centerpieces that need to be built at the venue, set up completed centerpieces at home, take pictures and send them to your helpers so they can reproduce them properly at the venue.
After the Event
Cleaning up to go home takes a fraction of the time compared to when things are first put in place. Our team will help with clean-up at the end of the night to help whoever is responsible for items being brought home can get out the door quickly. Our team will confirm with the responsible individuals what they need to take with them and help them load their vehicle to leave.