I knew planning a wedding wouldn't be as easy as coming up with the dreams, snapping my fingers, and making reality. However, I did not anticipate all that would have to go into every decision. As much as you would think that you can take one thing at a time, maybe make a decision and then give yourself a month or so before making another huge payment, I mean decision, this just isn't true. Each and every choice you make is somehow intertwined with the others, suddenly adding that much more pressure onto all the little things.
Clark and I discussed when we would want to get married a while back. We knew marriage would not happen before graduation in order to let us focus on school. However we also talked about the difficulties of taking time off for a wedding at a new job. The potential of using all of our vacation time for the wedding was something neither of us enjoyed thinking about. These two factors made the choice pretty simple. If the timing was right and all was meant to be, we would plan to marry sometime in the summer after he graduated, but before starting a job. Well the timing was very right, Clark proposed, and the date was set for summer of 2016!
Clark proposed in mid May so I was under the impression that I had plenty of time for planning.. not that I hadn't been planning since I was 12, but the setting in motion part could wait. That idea was quickly squashed but the realization that almost all the venues we looked at in Colorado were completely booked during that summer. In a panic, I recruited my mom to the "call every venue possible & find an available date" team, and then bugged her several times daily about any progress. We eventually found several beautiful locations that had varying availability to pick from in the month of June.
With only a week's notice, we booked a flight to Colorado for the weekend and scheduled showings at several venues. I ignorantly thought that it would be as simple as walking through and picking our favorite. However, lucky for me I have a mom with over 20 years of law experience, and therefore was informed of all the fine print for each and every venue. Let me tell you ladies, this is crucial!
What you might not realize going into this experience is that most venues have a list of other vendors that you must pick from. On top of that, several vendors require a minimum cost for different aspects of the wedding. For example, we loved one golf course venue until discovering that the minimum food cost was $16,000. Another venue showed amazing pictures online of different weddings occurring there, however we quickly found out it was a $5,000 charge for the empty space, and an
extra charge to rent decor, tables, etc.
In other words, be prepared to go broke and always read the fine print!
After narrowing down our list to 4 or 5, I started the difficult process of vendor research. This decision was no longer about picking the venue, but it was now about also being prepared and happy to use the vendors required by that venue. I started with online reviews, read articles about each, and eventually picked my favorites. Finally, I looked into the quality of service that was found at each venue. Online reviews make a huge difference when considering this! Another big help? Their responsiveness and willingness to help when you call or email. I went into this process thinking I already knew where our venue would be. However, after calling several times a week, emailing, and being out right annoying, I never once got a response.
Just as we were about to head home, it was clear to me who the front runner was. I told my mom how sure I was of this place and their vendors, and she completely agreed. Villa Parker scored an A+ in every category from vendors offered, friendliness of staff, online reviews (which absolutely raved about the place), cost, and amenities included! Each of these things reassured me that no matter what, our experience here would be amazing and that is would set just the right scene for our happy day.
Clark and I flew into Colorado, met with 3 of my 4 bridesmaids, and visited this venue that I had such high hopes for. The place absolutely blew my dreams out of the water and went above and beyond for us. There was no need to look anywhere else, and we immediately canceled all other venue showings. Villa Parker creates the perfect Tuscan, romantic feel that we were hoping for, and will without a doubt be the perfect place for our perfect day.
Venue: Villa Parker
Love is a big part of my life, so here I will do my best to give you a glimpse of what it means to me.
For the next year or so, it will be the primary destination for wedding planning updates.