If you’re reading this, chances are good that you’re getting hitched.  Congratulations!  It’s so exciting!  And, I bet, a little nerve-wracking, too, huh?  It’s all good.  You’ve got this.  We’ll help.  Over the years, we’ve been to a lot of events.  We’re very fortunate, as DJs, to see both the good and the bad.  Here’s a list of things to avoid, in no particular order:

  1. Too much (or not enough) alcohol.

    An open bar with beer and wine seem just about right.  An open bar with booze, however, can get out of hand real quick.  Alcohol is definitely the main source of wedding disasters.  On the flipside, having a expensive cash-only bar can really wreck a fun night.  Your guests probably won’t be able to let loose if they’re getting charged $8 for a beer.

  2. Not having a bad weather backup plan. 

    Let’s face it.  We live next to a rainforest.  It’s wet here.  Even if your wedding is in August, you should have a backup plan for a rainy day.  Rainy weddings can be extra special–rain is beautiful and it draws people together, but only if you have a backup plan that consists of keeping people (and their expensive shoes) dry.

  3. Amateur photographers. 

    I once DJed a wedding where the photography took over two hours.  I later learned that the photographer was a cousin of the bride who had never taken wedding photos before.  Those two hours could’ve been spent enjoying the company of the newlyweds’ guests at cocktail hour.  Instead, they had to pose for glamour shots.

  4. Putting the bar outside in the next building down the road.

    Okay, I know this is another alcohol-related thing, but it’s important.  If you put the bar outside away from the party, guess where half of your guests will be hanging out?  You got it: not at the party.  It’s impossible to have a smooth, flowing event if your guests are segmented into two or more groups.  Even if there’s a great spot for the bar in the back alley or down by the river, we recommend putting it right next to the dance floor.  This will keep everyone centrally located–perfect for impromptu dance-offs.

  5. Too much Pinterest.

    We’ve gotten some excellent ideas off of Pinterest over the years.  But, it can be too much.  Do your own thing!  Don’t let the professional crafty blogger folks give you a case of the haves-and-the-have-nots.  Just be yourself.  Authenticity is what people appreciate most of all.  It’s impossible to keep up with the things you will find on the internet.

  6. Not preparing a toast. 

    If you or your guests plan to give a toast or a speech, consider preparing it in advance.  We have seen some epic fails occur during this part of the evening.  Keep it simple, thoughtful, and end the toast with a cheers, prost, or salud!

  7. Not hydrating or eating on your big day. 

    This is especially important if you’re getting married.  I once witnessed a wedding where a young groomsman of about 12 years old passed out during the “I DO’s.”  Why you ask?  Because he had not eaten or drank anything all day.  He had suffered heat stroke due to his dehydration.  Fortunately, we rehydrated him and by the end of the evening he was showing us his moves on the dance floor.  Bring snacks and liquids (not just champagne) for you and your wedding party.  Make them available all day.

  8. Treating your vendors poorly. 

    Your vendors, including us, are going to do everything we can to make your event awesome.  Be kind to all your vendors, and you’ll get the amazing service you deserve and expect.

  9. Not planning enough time. 

    A typical wedding takes at least 6 hours from start to finish.  A corporate event could easily last 4 to 6 hours.  Give yourself breathing room and build in extra time for conversation and breaks.

  10. Cleaning up early. 

    The guaranteed best way to end your event early is to start taking down tables and chairs before the last dance.  If your well-meaning mother-in-law starts cleaning off tables, you can bet that everyone else will start helping her.  This will end the night.  Instead, ask people to stop cleaning and dance!  We can all clean up together when the night is over.