Thursday, October 24, 2013

Amanda & Brett at Edgewood Tahoe

The world is a different place now than when I began deejaying weddings back in 1988. Brides used to have to rely on adds in the yellow pages or on seeing a DJ at a wedding fair for an impression on what that DJ could offer. There was no Youtube to view previous work or Yelp or Wedding Wire for reviews from contented (and not so contented) couples. Truly it is so much better now- a couple can make an informed decision from a variety of sources, and even Skype or FaceTime with prospective vendors hundreds or thousands of miles away. But one thing hasn't changed in all those years: the best advertising is word of mouth from happy clients. Nothing is better than that. It is someone who loved what you did for their event and would hire you all over again if they had the chance. And they, when a friend or loved one has a special day coming up, wholeheartedly recommend you to that person. It is a compliment that cannot be measured in words or even by a stellar review, and it gets me even that much more fired up than I already am to make sure the new couple's day matches or exceeds that of referring couple.
The bride arrives!
I still go down to SoCal several times a year to do weddings & events for people that I developed relationships with over many years even though I haven't lived there since 2000. I have been deejaying in Reno/Tahoe now for 4-5 years and it pleases me to no end that a large percentage of my business now is due to referrals from happy brides and grooms from my work up here. Such was the case with Brett and Amanda. They had heard of me through Nicole and Jason (see blog entry) whose wedding I was privileged to attend and perform at in 2012. Knowing how great Jason & Nicole and their friends and family were made me super excited to be a part of Amanda & Brett's big day.
Absolutely stunning day!
Brett & Amanda don't live in the area, but like so many couples wanted their day to be set in the spectacular natural beauty that is Lake Tahoe, and they picked my favorite venue up there: Edgewood. Edgewood Tahoe is a first-class establishment right on the lakeshore. Not only is the scenery gorgeous, but the building's architecture is uplifting and perfectly complements the pristine lake and the meticulously cared-for golf course that surround it. Going hand in hand with the postcard views both inside and out is the attention to detail and dedication to professionalism exhibited by the entire staff from groundskeepers to bartenders and from coordinators to wait captains. Edgewood is special, and so are they to be employed there. Professional, efficient, competent, and friendly are words that come to mind immediately when I think of Edgewood staff. Delicious is what comes to mind when I think of their food. You won't get the same old cuisine there- every dish is amazing! Two of my favorites aren't what you'd normally expect. The sliders they do for appetizers are outstanding and leave your guests salivating for dinner.  And when dinner arrives, everything is superb but my favorite is their grilled veggies and pasta salad. The veggies are colorful and always perfectly cooked- not to crunchy but not limp, and the pasta salad is filled with artichoke hearts and other goodies that take it beyond normal pasta salads. Anyway, I digress. Back to the happy couple!
MOH April toasts the newlyweds
I was in constant contact with Amanda throughout the process, mostly by email, and I loved the fact she'd think of one important detail and send it to me immediately. She sent me a timeline pretty early on and I'd adjust it accordingly as we'd add songs or events, all the way up to their wedding day. Having everything down and set months ahead is great, but I could see their ideas develop to fruition as she'd send me changes and adds, and it seemed like a more dynamic process that way.
Group shot on the deck!
Their ceremony took place on the green, right beside the Lake and next to the North Room. It was a gorgeous day as only Tahoe can deliver, and my poor photography even looks semi-decent in those surroundings. Michael Buble's "Close Your Eyes" played while the bridal party entered and after a planned dramatic pause, Amanda in an absolutely stunning dress arrived just as Hunter Hayes began singing in his song "Wanted". Reverend Ron Sayed delivered a thoughtful ceremony and when he introduced them to the crowd's cheers & applause, Brad Paisley's "The World" escorted the newlyweds down the aisle. It was a picture-perfect moment in a picture-perfect day!  The guests then headed up to my vantage point on the deck just outside the North Room for drinks and appetizers while family and the BP posed for  pictures right below them.
First dance as husband & wife!
As pictures concluded, I invited everyone inside to their tables, we welcomed Brett & Amanda to their reception, and a fabulous dinner buffet commenced. Champagne was ready right after dinner and no time was wasted as toasts were made to the B&G. The efficiency of Edgewood- I've written about it in previous blogs- is first-class. I started to check to see if the champagne was going to be poured soon only to find them ready to pass out 150+ filled flutes right at that moment! I've been doing this a long time and for a venue to get a jump on me is rare, but it happens often up at Edgewood.
This young man dedicated a song to Amanda...

and then had the moves to back it up!

Instead of going right into dancing after the toasts, Brett invited everyone to go out on the deck for a group shot. Just a great picture of a great and supportive crowd! Once they had gotten the shot, everyone went back inside and watched Amanda & Brett dance to "Give It All We've Got Tonight" by George Strait for about a minute or two before Gil cut in for the Father-Daughter Dance. Gil, Amanda's dad, contacted me secretly to choose the song, and it was a great surprise to Amanda when "My Little Girl" by Tim McGraw came on. Truly the most sentimental dance of the evening!  Gil was gracious in that soon afterwards we were calling up Tito, Amanda's step-father to step in. A class act from a classy dad. Mitchie, Brett's mom was soon up and dancing with her son and then the bridal party joined everyone. An unforgettable moment and a great photo op! The Black-Eyed Peas then started the general dancing off, and it really never faded all evening- matter of fact the dance floor became more and more crowded as the evening wore on. There were many memorable moments throughout and when it was time to head back to the hotel, Thompson Square's "If I Didn't Have You" was a great choice the newlyweds made for their last song. I had an absolute blast- I got to visit with and remember Nicole & Jason's wedding and be a part of an equally memorable day, that of Amanda and Brett. Thanks to Edgewood for everything they do so well.  Thanks to Nicole & Jason for their referral and above all thanks to Brett & Amanda for allowing me to be a small part of a magical day and evening. I love what I do and people like you two are why. All the best and many, many years of happiness!

Jason & Nicole!

"Little White Church" played during the toss!

A great crowd... So fun!