Sponsored by Lafayette Club
The wedding industry has always been a close cousin of the meetings and events industry. While a lot of tips, tricks, and trends are unique to the differing sectors, from time to time corporate planners can look to the wedding industry for inspiration. We spoke with Nicole Smith, from the Lafayette Club team, for the latest insights that event planners can steal in 2017.
Tips & Tricks
1. Booking & Planning: It’s important to book your venue one year out. Spaces book up fast and you’ll rest much easier knowing this large factor of your event is taken care of. Then, make sure you plan the rest of the event at your own speed. Having so many months to finalize all the other details should make your planning process smooth and relaxing.
2. Linens, Tables & Chars: Unless you have a specific idea for your event, try to use the linens, tables and chairs that the venue provides. Most of the time, these will be neutral and will easily work with your décor vision. The money you save from using the onsite linens can be put towards something exciting like a photo booth or champagne toast.
3. Dining Options: Food stations work so much better than sit-down meals and passed apps, especially for a large event – and they are so much more fun! Food stations also allow you to incorporate more trends into your event like focusing on local fare or interactive food options. Have guests make their own dessert with a hot chocolate bar, or serve everything on stick in an ode to the state fair.
4. Pay Attention to Detail: The number one thing most people forget when planning a wedding is to provide a shuttle for guest to and from the event. While this may not be applicable to your event, make sure to think of everything guests might need. From a coat check to valet services, the details are what can make or break an event.
5. Photography: Event photographers know what they’re doing so overdirecting them might do more harm than good. One thing to guarantee they capture are the specifics that make your event unique. For instance, you wouldn’t want to miss a shot of the sunset for a venue on the water or the frosted windowpanes of a winter event. Make sure the photographs represent the entire event and not just the guests mingling over cocktails.
6. Planning: Remember that planning should be fun. While this piece of advice might seem a bit tiresome, it’s often forgotten. It’s easy to get caught up in the details, become stressed by deadlines and forget how fun planning can be. Always try to take a step back, look at the big picture and focus on the positives of meeting and event planning.
6 Trends to Embrace
1. Late-Night Snacks: Guests will love to leave with a burger or a doughnut in hand.
2. In-Season Florals: Pinch a few pennies by embracing the flowers of the season.
3. Beer Gardens: Interactive spots for drinking elevated the fun of an event.
4. Alternative Desserts: Ditch the cake in favor of more unique and sweet offerings.
5. Pre-Event Group Excursions: Let your group bond offsite and before the big event.
6. Focusing on Your Locale: Honor the city you’re in with culinary and décor themes.
Sponsored by Lafayette Club
Located just west of the Twin Cities, the Lafayette Club has earned a reputation as one of the area's most memorable venues for all types of occasions with our gorgeous setting on Lake Minnetonka. Couple this with our unique Grand Ballroom which boasts an enclosed veranda overlooking Crystal Bay, gleaming hardwood floors and large crystal chandeliers for an event like no other. We also have a beautiful outdoor venue overlooking the lake for your special event! Each reception, banquet, party, and meeting is customized to your preferences so that it suits your specific tastes, as well as your budget, for a truly unique and memorable occasion.