Finding vendors for your Texas Hill Country wedding can be a daunting task, not to mention time consuming. Where does one even start? You may have cousin Josh who strums a pretty mean guitar that could play during your ceremony, or a friend in college that can make angelic music come from her cello. Or, remember that cool Texas Hill Country DJ you and the love of your life danced the night away to? Yes, there are those, but they may also come with a lot of unknowns. Will they be on time? How will they be dressed appropriately? Will they follow your instructions? Do you have someone who can manage all of them leaving you open to enjoy your event?
Ceremony & Reception Music
Most brides either know exactly what they want and have mentally played through their entire wedding day from beginning to end a million and one times, or there are those that have an idea but don’t know where to start, and yet others that welcome input, guidance, recommendations and all they want is to show up on their special day and enjoy it, leaving all the planning to someone else. And there are the brides who want to do everything themselves, soup to nuts, as they say.
There is no right or wrong answer, but people have to be put into place to execute your event from beginning to end, period. And you probably won’t want cousin Lucy who has no experience whatsoever running the show. Weddings are never a one man/woman show, it is far too overwhelming. Especially for those brides planning a destination wedding, or those who are still going to school, or have just stepped into a new career field after college, where will all this planning time fit into their schedule?
Wedding Photographers, Photobooths, and More!
Typically the first thing a couple secures is the venue. With that out of the way, most venues also offer either in-house catering or bartenders, wedding coordinating, bakers, or they offer preferred lists of vendors they have worked with before and trust and can guide you to your ‘vendor match made in heaven’.
Decide what is the most important to you and budget from there. For some it is the venue, others it’s the food & beverages for their family and friends, there are those who cherish the decor and flowers, while some brides say it is the dress, and yet others say it is the sanctity of the union. If you can prioritize your preferences, then consider that in the financial aspect, and you will be well on your way to mapping out your big day.
Here at Old Glory Ranch we take a lot of the guesswork out of your planning by offering an in-house experienced day-of wedding coordinator for your Chapel Hall wedding and reception, along with an experienced site manager who will handle the vendor details for your event. We also offer in-house fresh floral & decor which many of our clients have raved over saying their guests have commented on it being the most beautiful flowers they have seen at any wedding. That, and the full service we offer garner the most glowing reviews from our clients.
Perfect Sparkler Exit
Sparklers not only make a wonderful wedding exit for a Texas Hill Country wedding, but also great wedding photography. Old Glory Ranch found these very helpful tips from one of our preferred photographers, “Photo Jennette”. We wanted to share her perfect sparkler exit tips with you:
Today, we want to take a few minutes to highlight the best strategy for your perfect sparkler exit on your big day!
The big sparklers work best –
The larger sparklers last up to 4-5 minutes, and will give your guests time to light them and then give you time to make your exit before they go out. The shorter ones will do the opposite. Half of them will be extinguished by the time the other half are lit.
Lighters are bad, sparklers are good. –
We are certain if you have a wedding planner, they will already know this, but lighting on all 4 ends of the line with a lighter, and then having your guests light them off one another is the most effective way to spontaneously light 100 sparklers. For some reason, sparklers light each other almost instantly, while lighters take far to long!
Bride and Groom should be ready, but hidden.
Before anyone lights a single sparkler, all of your guests should line up and be ready to light their sparklers, and you (The Bride and Groom) should be in a designated, hidden spot that gives you easy access to your exit.
Have good help.
If you want to have a successful sparkler exit, you must have help. If you choose not to have a wedding coordinator, that’s O.K. but you still need good friends with organizational skills to help everyone get ready and lit.
BEST PRACTICE – Have at least two people from your wedding party who are “designated lighters.” They each light two sparklers and then put away their lighters. “Designated lighter one” starts at the front and “designated lighter two” starts at the end.
Using their lit sparklers, they should light a sparkler ever 6-8 guests and inform your guests to light off each other until they meet in the middle. Note: They should also let people know to hold the sparklers up and not to wave them around.
Make sure everyone is standing back.
These two helpers should know when their job is done, they need to give you the thumbs up and step into the line! It’s best not to start walking until your designated lighters are free and clear and you can have a clear path for your exit.
GO, GO, GO.
NO, NO, NO. Take your time!! Take all the time you want. You should happily mosey through the sparklers (soak it up and enjoy!), maybe stopping to smooch along the way if you feel like it.
This gives your wedding photographers plenty of time to capture the sparkler exit photograph that you are expecting. It also ensures you will safely make it through the line for sparklers.
So these are our most important tips for having the perfect sparkler exit from your wedding. Will they work perfectly every time? Maybe not, but if you follow these steps, your bride and groom exit will be far better than if you don’t. In the end, you will have an amazing memory from an amazing day and all will go safely and smoothly.
Take a look at Meredith & Toby’s wedding through Photo Jennette’s lens as she photographed a sparkler exit at Old Glory Ranch!
For your Old Glory Ranch sparkler departure, we recommend the ’36” Gold’ for a longer burn time. Our staff distributes the sparklers to your guests and assists with getting them all lit, providing instructions along the way. During that process, our day-of-coordinator has the couple tucked away awaiting their cue that the sparklers are all ‘sparkling’ and the guests are instructed by our staff to ‘hold them high’ for the couples safe exit on their wedding day!
“Outstanding Texas Hill Country Venue”
We’re taking a walk down memory lane with Lisa on Location, a Hill Country Wedding Photographer, who posted an awesome article on her blog about Old Glory Ranch. We love that she started her Outstanding Texas Hill Country venues with Old Glory Ranch! We’ll call it our TBT “Throw Back Thursday” blog!
3/11/11 – Lisa had this to say about Old Glory Ranch:
“When you get right down to it, Central Texas is fortunate to have some of the best wedding venues anywhere. It’s an embarrassment of riches, to be honest. As a Central Texas wedding photographer based in New Braunfels, Lisa has been blessed to photograph weddings all over. From historic Fredericksburg in the Hill Country, to San Antonio’s famed River Walk to the sunny shores of Lake Travis–and she loves every minute of it!
Brides and grooms ask her about potential wedding venues more often these days. So she decided to begin spotlighting some of the outstanding Texas Hill Country wedding venue locations and what each venue offers. We are starting with the indoor and outdoor options at Old Glory Ranch in Wimberley. Old Glory Ranch is located just south of Dripping Springs, as the Wedding Capital of Texas.
The first thing that hits you when you emerge from the wooded drive onto this hill country ranch is the gorgeous, honey-golden chapel, which may be used for ceremonies and receptions. The exterior is smooth-cut cedar planking, and the result is a magical combination of rustic charm and elegant dignity. I’m serious folks, when the sun shines down, the chapel literally glows.
It is exceptionally roomy inside, too. The wood surfaces are all polished smooth, and rows of windows on either side of the chapel fill the space with a warm glow. Any wedding photographer will tell you this is some of the absolute best light to shoot in–it gives everyone healthy, attractive skin tones and adds a rich warmth to all the photos.
There’s a lovely covered back patio area for receptions surrounded by magnificent oak trees. For a more formal dinner. the chapel hall can be converted to that in short order as well (a neat trick if the weather doesn’t cooperate!) Stained glass and detailed painting on the interior beams complete the picture, with old-world, Germanic charm.
Owner Suzanne McCord (who just became a grandmother this week–Congratulations, Suzanne!) contains more than 2,000 acres on the grounds which she’d developed impressively. The Gatehouse Pavilion is an outdoor venue suitable for smaller gatherings.
What’s most impressive, however, is the two miles of riverfront access along the Blanco. Here McCord has built two fantastic outdoor wedding venues. The wooden Wedding Deck is bordered by a large grassy lawn suitable for up to 500 guests. The smaller Stone Landing is the second, which can accommodate smaller gatherings of 75 or less.
Both outdoor venues are literally right on top of the Blanco River, surrounded by spectacular old-growth Montezuma Cypress. For lovers of outdoor weddings, it doesn’t get any better than this for your big day.
Suzanne works with Liz Danna, general manager, and Gina McClure, the marketing and artistic director. Any one of them will do you right.
So if you’re looking for a genuine Texas Hill Country wedding venue or event center, give the fine folks at Old Glory Ranch a call. Inquire about their wedding packages and request a tour. Better yet, give Lisa a call first, so you’re guaranteed great wedding photography.”
See the blog here: Lisa on Location
Old Glory Ranch highly recommends Lisa as one of our preferred photographers for your special day.