(Yes, this is what your coordinators look like after about 12 hours on site :-)! Image courtesy Evrim Icoz Photography)
The wedding photobooth used to be a fun novelty; now it seems like a wedding must-have, along with regular photography and mini-desserts. So common now, that we're often asked,
"What can I add to my wedding to entertain guests along with, or instead of, a photobooth?"
We are definitely still big fans of the photobooth because not only is it amusing, it serves as a different kind of wedding documentation and also as a party favor. But here are a few ideas if you want to supplement the wedding day with entertainment or amusements that are a little different and sure to be remembered:
GIFbooth: Do you love GIFs on tumblr? Or the fancy cinemagraphs that get passed around every Fashion Week? Animated GIFs (Graphics Interchange Files) are made using a special videocamera setup that translates the captured video or still frames into a moving photo. These can be downloaded from a wedding website after the wedding, and make a fun momento, similar to a flipbook. Among others, GIFFF Booth and Limelight Photo can provide these services.
If you are looking to deck out a candy bar, stuff scrumptious sweets into guest bags, or just take a break from planning and treat yourself, make sure to check out Quin Candy. All of their candy is made in-house and the ingredients are sourced locally when possible. They have an array of caramels, lollipops, and chews with unique and delicious flavor profiles like maple and cracked pepper caramels and smoked cola gumdrops. Their Best of Oregon Caramels are crafted with Oregon grown hazelnuts, local honey, and salt from the coast. You can visit their store on SW Stark or find these treats in shops around town. If you don't live in Portland you can also order these confections online. Just make sure to get enough to share!
If you are looking for some great ways to save money during the wedding planning process, look no further. Here are a couple of deals from some of our favorite local vendors.
Vibrant Table is offering two deals to new bookings. If you decide to use Vibrant Table as your caterer they will include a complimentary champagne toast or they will provide their Loft on Belmont for the rehearsal dinner.
If you haven’t decided on your venue or caterer yet, make sure to keep these deals in mind! We’re always finding out about more of these for our wedding clients, so bookmark us and check back soon; or contact us at email@example.com.
It's certianly not hard to love Andina, but many people are not aware that they offer a private dining option Tupai, as well. This is a great location to be able to enjoy amazing food in a beautiful setting for your next event.
Tupai set for a seated reception
"They offer a variety of rooms that would be great for bachelor/bachelorette dinners, showers, rehearsal dinners and receptions. Their dedicated special events team is committed to tailoring every aspect of each event, weaving together spectacular fare, extraordinary cocktails and an award-winning wine program, to ensure that every experience is memorable beyond compare. They offer a variety of menus and packages that will allow guests to take pleasure in the cuisine and hospitality for which Andina is renowned. Andina is also a great option for those looking to add a little destination element to an otherwise local wedding!"
Tupai is their largest event space, with room for up to 65 guests at a seated dinner and 100 guests for a standing cocktail reception.
"Tupai is located above Andina and offers a full bar and kitchen, mezzanine space for live music, natural light and wooden beams. The menu will feature Andina’s NovoAndean cuisine, which combines traditional flavors and ingredients native to Peru with a global reach that draws from Spanish, Japanese and Cantonese culinary influences. Dishes are prepared using modern technique and presented with finesse and flair. The full bar will deliver both Andina’s classic and NovoAndean cocktails – from the Pisco Sour and Caipirinha to the Sacsayhuamán and Margarita de Manzanita. Wines may be chosen from Andina’s award-winning list with the help of wine director Caryn Benke."
Wedding Reception at Tupai
If you haven't tried Andina yet make sure to go; and keep Tupai in mind for your next event!
Happy Friday! Today is a VERY special day to me as it is International Pi(e) Day. A day to celebrate the ratio of the diameter of a circle to its circumference. (That’s ∏d, in case you were wondering…) BUT! Today is also a day to celebrate the most delicious circle of all, the pie. (No offense to burger or pizza lovers.)
By Paul Smith (originally posted to Flickr as Pi pie) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
This is also a great time to talk about pie for your wedding; it’s a great substitute if you aren’t fond of cake! Here are a few of my favorite examples from weddings we have planned and coordinated:
Clockwise from top left: Pies and cupcakes by Food in Bloom at Bridal Veil Lakes wedding; Random Order Pies at private garden venue in Hillsboro; Random Order pies at Union-Pine wedding
Where can you get great pies for a wedding in Portland? Just a few ideas:
Today's installment of Local Love features the amazing Dayna McErlean's sister restaurants on NE Killingsworth – DOC and Yakuza. As different as different can be, DOC is an Italian kitchen with a changing set 4- or 5- course menu each night; while Yakuza is a Japanese-izakaya-influenced lounge.
What I love about each restaurant: DOC's homey, long-tables, family-style service that makes you feel as if you walked into your Italian grandmother's kitchen, even if you don't have an Italian grandmother. What the wedding planner in me loves is the reasonable, afforable rates for buying out the restaurant on a Friday night for a rehearsal dinner.
At Yakuza, I really enjoyed the Asian fusion menu items, including a Wasabi Martini and a Pear Jalapeno sushi roll, but what really wowed me was the secret hot tub in the backyard. I think it would be so fun to rent out the restaurant for an over-the-top bridesmaids luncheon or couples shower.
If you are looking for a local distillery for your event, wedding, bachelor/bachelorette, favors, etc., then look no further. Eastside Distilling has a great selection of spirits for any occassion. Their helpful staff can assist you in finding just the right booze to choose for your next party. Not only that, they have a fabulous tasting room that is perfect for sampling everything they have to offer!
"Eastside Distilling has been producing handcrafted spirits in Portland’s Distillery Row since our founding in 2009. All of our unique products are produced locally from natural ingredients in small batches for unparalleled quality and taste."
For so many couples, the food is the THE most important part of the wedding celebration. I often hear from them: "The food HAS to be good"…"We like the Portland food scene and want to integrate it into our wedding"…"We want to give our guests a taste of Portland and the Pacific Northwest". Often, they already have a caterer in mind when they start their venue search, and are challenged when they keep running into venues that have strict exclusive lists.
That got me to thinking. What Portland wedding and event venues allow outside catering? Here are just a few. Know any others? Please share in the comments below!
The Eliot Center – The Eliot Center is the "fellowship hall" aspect of the downtown First Unitarian Church. Not only are they able to seat up to 160 in their conference center for a reception, the adjoining Historic Eliot Chapel can seat up to 250 in a beautiful, elegant chapel setting for a wedding ceremony. They allow self-catering, outside caterers, and alcohol service in accordance with their policies.
Multnomah Arts Center – Located in SW Portland just a few minutes from downtown, the MAC is a Portland Parks and Recreation community center venue with a large auditorium and stage for indoor wedding ceremonies that can be changed over to a reception during a cocktail hour. Mingle areas include a dance studio and an outdoor plaza, which can also be used for ceremonies. All rental rooms, including the auditorium stage, and bathrooms are ADA-accessible and air-conditioned. In addition, most spaces have free Wi-Fi access.
The Glenn and Viola Walters Arts and Cultural Center is near and dear to our hearts, as one of our favorite recent weddings just took place there. The site features a large auditorium for ceremony and reception, downstairs classrooms to use as changing areas, a ground-floor lobby and an upstairs art gallery where guests can mingle during a room changeover. The kitchen facility is well-appointed and convenient for self-catering or your own caterer. The outdoor plaza can also be used for ceremonies.
The Laurelhurst Club – A 100-year-old property adjoining Laurelhurst park in SE Portland, this venue features an historic ballroom, mezzanine bar, kitchen facilities, bride's and grooms rooms, and outdoor ceremony lawn.
NW Events & Environments – By far the largest open catering venue we have seen, NW Events & Environments can accommodate 650 in a banquet setting and over 1000 if using multiple rooms in a reception-style flow. They do not allow outside alcohol, and kitchen facilities may have limitations.
Thanks for reading – if you found this post about Portland wedding and event venues helpful, you might also like:
Here in Oregon we had an uncharacteristically beautiful October. Blue skies and temps in the 60s and 70s are a reminder that fall can be the perfect time to host your wedding. Here are some ways to incorporate a fall feel into your wedding.
During the summer it's best to stick to cool, refreshing cocktails but fall begs for a warmer beverage. Here is a DIY Apple Cider Cocktail from Green Wedding Shoes that is sure to wow your guests. Plus, the alcohol is added after the cider is already concocted, making this an easy one to offer as a non-alcoholic choice as well.