Wedding Guests List Etiquette

Wedding Guests List Etiquette

Formulating your wedding guest list can be one of the most rewarding and anxiety-provoking parts of planning a wedding. While including people to celebrate in your wedding is good, it can also increase the overall cost and lead to conflicts. As a result, it is a good idea to carefully construct your wedding guest list.

A good way to create a list that will work is to follow a guide. Below we quickly cover how you can construct the appropriate list for your wedding through our wedding guest list etiquette guide. Let’s begin!

Begin With Your Dream List

The first thing you will want to do is organize your dream list of guests. If you had nothing to consider but your own happiness, who would you include in your wedding? Create this list and consider making several different ranks of musts, would-like-to-haves, and possible drops.

Consider Financial Help

It is not uncommon for the cost of weddings to be covered in part by parents and family members. As a result, you will want to consider not only including people who will donate, but people that they want included as well. So, if you have a grandma who is willing to donate money, then you may want to ask who they want included. You should also consider people who have money and might be willing to provide wedding gifts. Including them can mean significant savings for you down the road.

A Realistic Guest List

As any person who has created a guest list will tell you, it is easy for the guest list to quickly balloon out of control. You may begin with 20 guests, and quickly find yourself with 45 after only a few days. Keeping guest lists realistic is important because of cost. While many people do not want to discuss the costs associated with a wedding, it is crucial if you want to make a realistic plan that will cause you less anxiety. A realistic guest list will help you set hard limits.

Make Rules for Cutting People from Your List

Work with your partner and create a list of rules that you both will follow to determine who is cut from the wedding invitation list. Rules can include things like cutting people you haven’t talked to in more than three years, people you might feel guilty leaving off, and if nothing else eliminating those people neither of you have spoken or heard the names of. These rules may sound basic, but you will be surprised at how challenging it can be to follow these rules and act on them.

As a premier wedding venue in Ottawa, St. Elias Centre is committed to helping brides- and grooms-to-be with wedding planning and wedding etiquette advice. Get in touch if you have any questions or if you’d like to plan your wedding at our venue!


How to Choose Your Wedding Song

How to Choose Your Wedding Song

Your wedding song will typically be the first dance song played at your wedding. It will include you and your partner on the dance floor, dancing as other people watch. Because of this pressure, many people will take their time to find the right wedding song for their celebration.

So, what song are you going to play? If you are like most people, then answering this question will be difficult. Music plays an important role in our lives and can come to signify the experience we have with our significant other when moving forward. Whether or not the wedding song is right for you will depend on a lot of factors. With that in mind, we will look at how to choose your wedding song by comparing three of the most common competing interests. With any luck, you will leave with a better sense of what you will want to play.

Significance to You

This is what most people will think first. What song most moves you? What song has the right emotional mood for sharing a public moment with your significant other? Is there something in the music that makes it interesting to you? Does it have a beat and are you capable of dancing to it? Will it be appropriate for the mood of your wedding? All of these and more are questions you should be able to answer. Make a list of the songs significant to you and try to defend each to see which one sits best with you.

Significance to Your Partner

Your first song will also be your partner’s first song. Does your partner have any particular interests or strong desires when it comes to the first wedding song? Are they pushing for one particular song and will they be upset if you want a different song? If you don’t mind the song and don’t have strong opinions of your own on the matter, then it may be easier to let them figure it out.

Significance to Your Life Together

The last way to approach determining your wedding song is to consider something that speaks to you, your partner, and the life you want to share together. It can be the first song you both danced to, a song from a band that has a close, personal connection to the two of you, or even something that represents your hopes and dreams moving forward. Working together to find the right music can be the most challenging and most rewarding way to find a song you like.

No matter what song you choose, your wedding can be a magic night at the St. Elias Centre!


5 Corporate Event Ideas You Wouldn’t Expect

5 Corporate Event Ideas You Wouldn’t Expect

Are you having a hard time getting staff excited about your corporate events? Here are some unexpected ideas guaranteed to boost employee attendance and enjoyment:

Escape Room Puzzles

This is the latest fad sweeping the puzzle game industry and it’s not just for a Friday night with friends – it could also make for a successful and memorable corporate event. How it works: Small teams (typically a group of four or five people) are locked in a room together and the only way to escape is to work together to look for clues and solve the puzzles that will eventually lead them to the key to unlock the door.

The Escape Room activity is a unique and creative way to foster teamwork, bonding and communication amongst your staff. This fun, unorthodox activity plays on each individual’s natural social and critical thinking skills and will help staff discover each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and how to use them to work efficiently towards a set goal that benefits their entire team. A recipe for a successful corporate structure!

Awards Ceremonies

Awards are a fun to celebrate and reward staff or personnel for all the hard work they do. It boosts morale across the board and gives staff more incentive to produce exceptional work. Awards ceremonies offer a wide variety of event options to fit any budget – you could plan a casual luncheon or a more formal soiree, where staff could invite friends and family to take part in the festivities.

How-To Classes

Instructional classes and workshops are a great way to increase interpersonal communication among your staff. It provides a safe and informal setting for staff to interact with one another, while fostering a creative and constructive atmosphere which makes for wonderful corporate event. Cooking classes have proven to be one of the most popular corporate options, as it is a break from the subject matter you take on every day (unless you are a cooking staff, that is) and nothing brings people together faster than good food!

Sporting Events

A bit of healthy competition now and again never hurts. Sorting your staff into teams, perhaps intentionally teaming up colleagues from different departments, allows them to get to know each other better and learn how to communicate more effectively and work together as a group in order to achieve victory.

Game Days

Hosting a game day is an overwhelming crowd pleaser! Individual staff or small teams can compete against each other in a series of game show puzzles or tournaments. This could be small scale, perhaps teams of colleagues are pitted against one another in a gripping game of Pictionary, or larger scale with a company-wide race with each team member in a giant hamster ball!


3 Reasons You May Want to Hire a Wedding Planner

3 Reasons You May Want to Hire a Wedding Planner

A wedding is meant to be a fun and enjoyable experience. The loving couple exchange vows, people dance, the cake comes out, and you leave having had a great night. However, people don’t always realize the work that goes on behind the scenes. Someone has to be managing staff on site to ensure the first dance is cued at the right time and that the cake comes out before anybody leaves. Needless to say, this stress can put a real damper on the happy couple if they are having to play ringleader while trying to enjoy their big day.

This is why more and more people are electing to take advantage of the services of a professional wedding planner. These experts know how to streamline the planning process, taking care of all the little details to make sure that your big day goes off without a hitch and that it is everything that you hoped it would be and then some.

Here are a few key reasons why it may be worth the investment to hire a wedding planner:

Your Phone Will Be Ringing Off the Hook Leading Up to Your Big Day

Coordinating a wedding is far from an easy task. As the primary contact, you are going to have to juggle multiple phone calls per day, line up and attend numerous appointments, and be on call morning, noon, and night for likely at least three months leading up to your wedding day – and then comes planning the honeymoon! A wedding planner can take all of this stress and chaos off your plate, making the process fun and enjoyable for you and your partner.

Providing Wedding Advice and Insider Knowledge Backed by Experience

Wedding planners are going to be able to make recommendations and insider advice based on their experience. Having planned and attended countless weddings, an experienced wedding planner will be able to tell you what works, what to avoid, and what to do if you really want to create a WOW element for your guests – of course, all while staying on budget.

Industry Connections to Caterers, Bartenders, Entertainment

At the end of the day, one of the biggest advantages to working with a professional wedding planner is the advantage of leveraging their industry connections. Experienced wedding planners will be able to source multiple options in a variety of price points to create the wedding day of your dreams.


5 Creative Food Ideas for Your Summer Wedding

5 Creative Food Ideas for Your Summer Wedding

Finding creative food ideas for your summer wedding is the perfect way to make it memorable. Below are five ideas that work especially well in the summer months and that you may enjoy.

Consider Fruity “Cronuts”

Cronuts are a combination of donuts and croissants that have taken the wedding catering world by storm. A great airy, flaky, and tasty treat, cronuts are something that your guests will talk about for years to come. Their light airiness makes them perfect for the summer months and topping them with a fruity spread of something like strawberries, blueberries, or blackberries can make them something truly spectacular.

Forget The Fork

A creative food idea for your wedding can include the imagery of BBQ with a move away from using utensils. For example, meals that do not require a fork can add fantastic variation to your entrée. Things like meatballs served on toothpicks or other meats and vegetables are a great way to add some spice and variety to your food selection.

Go Mini!

Summer weddings can be characterized by longer days and heat. The last thing you want to do is add heavy food. Consider taking a popular meal and make it bite sized. For example, spaghetti and meatballs can be arranged into a single bight sized treat and served as such. Other heavy foods can be served in smaller amounts, allowing guest to commit to less when they take food.

A New Take On Comfort

A wedding is as much about you as your guests. However, when catering to so many different people, it is important to remember your own needs and desires, especially when it comes to food. Consider what food is your comfort food and role with it. Taking the “go mini” approach above, you can turn your favourite food into a bite-sized experience that your guests will enjoy.

Consider Interactive

The summer months bring to mind a lot of different interactive food opportunities. From scooping your own ice cream from an ice cream cart to designing your own snow cone and flavouring it yourself, you can make a refreshing and cool part of your food/drink selection a fun experience for adults and kids alike. You can even take this to the next level by providing materials for people to design their own specialty drinks. As a final consideration, you may want to combine ideas. Adult snow cones anyone?

 


5 Reasons to Host a Graduation Party

5 Reasons to Host a Graduation Party

Graduation events are a major accomplishment for many young adults. Whether it signifies the next step of leaving home for college or is a party to celebrate getting through a grade, academic accomplishments are worth celebrating. Below are four reasons why you should host your next graduation party at an Ottawa event centre.

Reward Academic Acumen With A Party That Fits The Accomplishment

Having your party at an Ottawa event centre helps add to the importance of the academic achievements. It acts as a fantastic reward for a lot of hard work and reinforces how so much hard work can have a positive outcome. Having an event space for the graduation party can allow for a wider selection of people to join as well, making it a more comfortable mix of fellow students and relatives for the person graduating.

No Clean Up Or Food Prep Required

If the event space is catered, then you will not have to worry about food prep or clean up after. You will save yourself a great deal of time. The benefits of which include being able to take in the ceremony and celebrate it along with your child. A graduation party celebrates the successes of your child as well as the sacrifices you made to ensure that they were able to make it this far. So take some time for yourself and allow someone else to handle the details.

Many Event Spaces Are Familiar With Graduation Parties

Graduation parties at banquet halls are becoming increasingly popular. When you contact an event space to plan the party, they may already have experience setting up such events and will be able to work with you to ensure that everything goes as planned.

Easier To Park At An Event Center Than A Home

Parking an extended family in and around your home can be a challenge. Fitting them all into your home may be impossible. If nothing else, an event space provides the area and accessibility that your home may not have.

Less Wear and Tear On Your Home

As a final consideration, know that locating a graduation party at an event centre will mean less wear and tear on your home. It will allow you to experience the party instead of managing guests. If nothing else, it will leave you with the peace of mind that when the festivities are all over, you can return to a clean home.

Choose St. Elias Centre and Banquet Hall for your upcoming graduation party!


How to Organize a Successful Fundraiser

How to Organize a Successful Fundraiser

This new age is taking our social lives to a whole new level. If you happen to have a big circle, then chances are your social calendar is packed and planned to the minute. And there might be a lot of fundraisers on the calendar, too.

If you are organizing a fundraiser, it is important that it stands out from the rest on a crowded fundraising schedule. There are many worthy causes to donate time and money to – what sets yours apart? Hosting a successful fundraiser takes planning, organization, creativity, and attention to detail. Follow these five simple tips and your fundraising event will be a huge success:

Goals

The aim of hosting a fundraiser should be clear. Is it an organization you want to raise money for or a little publicity of some other program? When you are clear about what you need to get out of the fundraiser, then you will be better able to plan the event around your goal. Also do some math and have an estimate of the amount that will be left after you deduct your expenses.

Budget

When planning any event, you need to calculate all costs beforehand. You need to cover the costs of the event, and also have a substantial amount left over to donate to your cause. Though you can’t anticipate every last-minute hiccup, leave room in your budget for additional expenses that may crop up – you don’t want to be left in a bind.

Guest list

The most important part of any event it the audience. Be clear on what kind of audience this event targets; professionals in a specific field, parents, or everyone. Engage your audience intellectually and emotionally to draw awareness to the event and support your cause.

Let the people know

You need to reach out to your target audience and let them know why they should attend your fundraiser and what is it that is worth their money. Along with the traditional marketing strategies, social media is a great addition and it will reach out to a much larger audience with a single post, picture, or tweet.

A complete plan

The staff and everyone else who is hosting the event must be aware of the event plan and be motivated to follow it. The St. Elias team is professional and experienced with hosting fundraising events, charity galas, corporate events, weddings, and other special events to ensure your event goes off without a hitch.

An organized event plan can ensure your way through the most technical of events. Keep your head clear and take in charge. Your well-organized and planned fundraising event will be a success!


Choosing the Perfect Honeymoon Destination

Choosing the Perfect Honeymoon Destination

Your honeymoon is going to be one of the most loved and cherished memories of your life. And you don’t want to end up in a place that is anything less than perfect. Chances are every one of us, male or female, has thought about the honeymoon at a certain point in life and you might be clear on what you want or where you want to go.

 

Honeymoon After Your St. Elias Wedding

Planning a honeymoon will be the highlight of your wedding planning, but there are a few aspects that need to be discussed. So grab a bottle of wine and sit down with your fiancé(e) and plan the honeymoon without drifting off into daydreaming.

Where Do You Want to Honeymoon?

You both need to discuss your honeymoon destination. Do you want to unwind on the beach or lace up a pair of hiking boots and explore the wilderness? Or hold hands and take a romantic stroll along the streets of some Rome and popping into restaurants to enjoy local delicacies? The world is filled with endless possibilities, so you can enjoy your favourite activities or step out of your comfort zone and try something new as you set on this new life path.

Make a budget and talk to an agent. If you can’t afford Maldives, chances are you will find a destination that has the same serene waters for a cheaper price. If Europe isn’t quite practical right now, Montreal and Quebec City both have old world charm but are just a quick train ride away.

How Long Will the Honeymoon Be?

After the whole wedding planning, you need to talk about how many days you can take off for the honeymoon. Trust me when I say this, if you are going somewhere far away then you don’t want to spend more time on the flight and less time honeymooning, especially with the jet lag factor. There is nothing wrong with taking a quick weekend away then planning a longer honeymoon later down the road.

Popular Honeymoon Ideas

Whether you want a beach honeymoon or an adventurous one, you can find a location that will fit your budget.

Maldives is the dreamiest, most perfect honeymoon destination but it could cost you a fortune. If you have money to burn then don’t hold back but if not, you don’t want to start the new chapter of your life with a big vacation bill.

If you do not have seasickness, then go on a cruise. It has everything. A 5-star hotel on water with mind-blowing views all day long, packed with entertainment and great food already paid for.

The most important part of a honeymoon is to connect with the one you have chosen to spend the rest of your life with. And where love resides, there is little room for anything else. Hope you have the honeymoon of your dreams!

St. Elias Centre is one of Ottawa’s favourite wedding venues, with over 11,500 square feet of space accommodating 50 to 1,000 wedding guests, on-site parking, in-house catering from our executive chef, and outstanding professional service.


5 Signs Your Company Needs a Team-Building Event

5 Signs Your Company Needs a Team-Building Event

It may not sound like the most exciting concept ever conceived, but team- building is necessary for establishing a few important team-related relationships. The employees that make up your company are what determine success or failure, and the cohesiveness and interactions between staff are what make them thrive at their very best. If you’re unsure whether this might be necessary just yet, here are five signs to decipher whether your company might be in need of a team-building event.

Comfort in Communicating

Communication is the backbone to having a successful team. It’s what keeps everyone on task. It facilitates a smooth, fluid system between colleagues, and gets things done. It’s important that coworkers feel comfortable enough to speak their mind and offer their opinion – after all, this is often what they’re being paid for. If there’s a distinctive feeling of neglect and miscommunication among team members – some time for repair might be necessary.

Fostering Trust

If there is very little – or a misguided amount – of communication amongst team members, then you can bet this is more than likely fostering some issues of trust. Obviously, this is something that can take a significant amount of time to establish, however, the more often members can get know each other in an environment that encourages trust, the more likely it will continue to develop naturally over time. Without trust, the need to control matters is something that can very easily permeate throughout a team, causing an overload of work for some with very inefficient outcomes for many.

Motivation

If you want your team members to improve performance, they might just need a bit of encouragement now and again. If the motivation and enthusiasm seem to have dwindled, this could be the perfect time for introducing a team-building event in order to give them a boost. If you want to ensure that your employees are on task, and performing to the best of their abilities, it is vital to keep them inspired and motivated to perform at their potential.

Encourage Creativity

Creativity is what keeps a company thriving year after year. With the incredibly fast pace within the business world, creativity is what keeps a company running. Group exercises are great for stimulating team members to throw out ideas and bounce them off of each other. Whether it’s encouragement or empty ideas, either way, this allows each person to feed off of another and brainstorm their ideas together. This can additionally, help foster each of the aforementioned points simultaneously.

Get with the Times

Today, it’s more common than not for companies to have teams that consist of a complete range of generations. From the employee who is edging towards retirement, to the 25-year-old that’s fresh out of college – it’s imperative to keep everyone on the same page. With the variety of perspectives, it’s easy to have everyone following their own beat. This isn’t always a bad thing, but when it does throw some conflict into the mix, it could be a good sign that some wrinkles need to be ironed out.

By establishing some ground rules and concepts in a positive environment, you can help form more cohesive interactions among each team member – and there’s simply no better way than with a team-building event. St. Elias Centre is a premiere corporate event venue in Ottawa, perfect for hosting teal-building events, fundraising galas, charity events, trade shows, staff parties, and more!


Everything You Need to Know About Ring Sizing

Everything You Need to Know About Ring Sizing

Wedding rings have been exchanged between couples for many years as a symbol of eternal love and devotion. They have no start or finish, which relates closely to the everlasting union of a married couple. It is said that we wear our wedding and engagement rings on our left hand because the ancient Egyptians believed that the vein in the fourth finger connects directly to the heart. You learn something new every day, right? No matter if this is true or not, one thing is for sure – when it comes to rings, size definitely matters. Here is an essential guide to everything you absolutely need to know where ring sizing is concerned.

Understanding Ring Sizing

If you’ve never shopped for rings before, the whole process will probably be rather daunting at first. Standard ring sizes are measured in millimeters based on the ring’s inner circumference, and is sized according to a standard scale, just like women’s clothing. Ring sizing is not done the same way from country to country, however. In Canada, ring sizing is carried out following a numerical scale, with quarter and half sizes. Other countries tend to follow an alphabetical scale, which use whole sizes or a set circumference adjustment.

Getting Measured

Although there are lots of ways for you to measure your ring size from the comfort of your own home, the best possible way to get your ring size accurately measured is to go straight to the source – a jeweler. Going to a jeweler involves them slipping a ring onto your finger, and determining your ring size based on where the ring stops.

Measuring From Home

If measuring your own ring size at home is simply more convenient for you, that’s totally okay. There are lots of ways for you to do so – there’s even a printable ring sizer! Just print the ring size chart at “Scale 100” and place the ring over the circles, lining up the inside edges to the circle that best matches on the chart. If you’re stuck between two sizes, always choose the larger one. Another good way of measuring from home is to do so with string. Print the ring size chart to actual size, and wrap a piece of string around your finger and cut it at the point when the end overlaps. Then, line up the string with the ring size guide on the chart.

Jeweler’s Ring Sizing Tips

“The wider the band, the tighter it will fit.”

“The more snug, the better.”

“Your fingers swell up in summer, so keep this in mind when choosing the best ring size.”

Once you have the perfect engagement ring, you can start planning the rest of your wedding details – including finding the best wedding venue in Ottawa!

 


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