Welcome to the Gastonia Conference Center
Gastonia Conference Center is a symbol; a sign of the people of Gastonia, North Carolina on the move toward civic, economic, and environmental sustainability. Designed to pay homage to the surrounding architecture and heritage of the area, Gastonia Conference Center is the premier destination for local, regional, and state-wide conferences and events, from metro-Charlotte based corporate meetings, to state-wide conventions, to local and community events, to memorable weddings.
This cutting-edge, 30,000-square-foot technologically advanced and sustainably built conference center is designed to generate business and support the local Gastonia community. The Conference Center accommodates over 450 meeting attendees and 300 for a seated banquet function and features ten separate, purpose-built and distraction-free meeting rooms, event spaces and 5,100 square-foot ballroom. It has already gained recognition as the greater Charlotte region's foremost destination for events of all kinds.
How to Make Wedding Guests to RSVP
Timing of Wedding Invitations is Crucial
According to usual norms, invitations should be sent two months before the wedding date. This will give your guests about five weeks to respond if you are requesting RSVP four weeks before the wedding. The timing is crucial because if you provide more time, the invitation will usually be put aside, to be dealt with later, and most probably forgotten. However, you should not shorten the time too much, since you will need time tracking the guests who have not responded and you will need to give the final order to your caterers.
You also need to give your guests proper head’s up time so they can make room in their schedule to attend. If you inform them about this wedding in the last minute, for instance, most of them will probably have already made plans themselves and will not be able to attend your wedding.
For a destination wedding, you will need to send invitations at least four to five months in advance so that guests can make their travel plans and take leave from their place of work. When you are paying the airfare for your guests, you will have to send save-the-date destination wedding invitation, by which you can gather their travel info.
Some guests may not be able to figure out what RSVP means. RSVP is actually a French abbreviation, which simply means please respond. Hence, instead of RSVP, you could simply write, “Please respond by ‘date’”. But most people know what this means and if they do not there is nothing wrong with learning something new.
Prominently Display the RSVP Date
In many invitations the reply-by date is somewhere in a corner, in small print. When the date is not clearly seen, many guests feel they do not have to reply if they are not attending. Therefore, display the date prominently in the RSVP card, in the title itself.
It is not improper to phone guests and ask them if they have received your invitation. During the short conversation, you can include that you are hoping they will come and you are eager to receive their RSVP card. Sometimes close friends and family members feel that reply is not necessary, since they are indeed expected to attend the wedding. When you contact guest by phone they will take steps to make their plans and post the RSVP card.
How to Handle the Problem of Wedding Crashers Gracefully
Handling Total Strangers
You might find total strangers attending your wedding, usually when the venue is a hotel or some public place, since anybody can get through the entrance. It becomes quite difficult to spot strangers when you have a huge guest list, and there are people in the list whom you have never seen before. You would not want to make someone stand at the entrance with the list, since that looks quite awkward.
The best thing to do is ask some of your close friends to keep a look out for people who do not seem to belong or are dressed wrong. If you have a doubt about someone and you do not recognize them, first check with your and your spouse’s parents. If nobody knows the person, ask your wedding planner, venue manager, or a friend to approach the strangers discreetly and see them to the door.
Even when you have not included the words “and guest” on your invitation, you might still find someone’s boyfriend or girlfriend turning up at your wedding. One of the ways to avoid this is to make it clear to your friends that you have financial constraints and the space will be just right for the invited guests.
Secondly, check RSVP cards to make sure someone has not included uninvited guests. Even after all this, if plus-ones show up uninvited, you cannot show them the door. You will have to arrange to put an extra seat at a table. However, you do not have to seat the person with his date.
That is just a slight way of showing them they are not going to be awarded for their cute deviousness.
When you are inviting families with their children, be ready to allot extra space for the new babies and new kids of the family. However, if you are not going to invite children to your wedding, make it clear in the invitation and your wedding website. Include the line, “Ceremony and Reception will be adults-only Events”. If children still turn up, you cannot do much, but try your best to accommodate them. However, you can ask a friend or the wedding coordinator to tell the family not to leave their kid unattended, and they should take the kid outside if the child begins to fuss.
Saving Funds without Looking Cheap at Your Wedding
The Guest List
There is not any easier way to save than decreasing the number of guests. Even though you celebrate your wedding by inviting guests, it is still an intimate event. Hence, you need to consider whether you really want to have such a huge guest list. Slash your guest list by not inviting:
$1§ Business associates and friends whom you socialize only on online networks
$1§ People who are very distantly related and whom you have not been in contact with for a long time
$1§ Acquaintances at the workplace whom you are not close with
When you are on a tight budget, it is better to keep your guest list to very close friends and family members. This way you can provide quality food and entertainment to a few people rather than having cheap stuff for a huge crowd.
Hiring a great venue like Gastonia Conference Center is worth the cost, but you can cut down this expense by making a few adjustments. Select Sunday or Friday as your wedding day, and hold a brunch or lunch party instead of hosting a dinner. Consider having a buffet with in-season dishes, since that will cut the cost of having to need waiters, waitresses, and expensive meats.
Forget about a Live Band
A live band with a DJ can work out quite costly, and cheaper alternative would be hooking up the music system with planned playlists for different parts of the wedding such as ceremony, dances, cocktail hour, and dinner and so on. Once you have playlists you do not need a DJ, and you can simply ask one of the guests of your party to make special announcements.
Hire a Knowledgeable Photographer
Do not skimp on hiring the best photographer, since you will regret the decision of hiring a cheap photographer when you look at your wedding photos later. Remember, your wedding is the most important day of your life and you would like it recorded properly. Look at the cost of a professional photographer as an investment, and you could save money by not having to hire a videographer.
Enhance Your Wedding with Unique Styles and Themes
Adding a Touch of Sports
If you and your partner love sports, it would be great to add certain sports elements. For instance, if you were proposed at a baseball game or you had your first date at the stadium, you could include many things of the game into your wedding. You could include ticket stubs in place of escort cards, or you could serve corn dogs and roasted peanuts along with signature drinks. It does not matter which sports you like, as the main elements of any sport event can be easily incorporated into wedding celebrations.
Creating a Cocktail Lounge
The wedding reception can be a full cocktail party instead of the traditional reception. After the ceremony is over, the setting can be made for cocktail party with the required lounge furniture and assorted table configurations. You could include some stationery food stalls, but depending heavily on passed foods. Have a photographer take photos of the partying guests, and have them projected on a big wall. Guests will love to watch themselves having a spectacular time.
Changing the Dress
A simple thing like changing into a stunning party dress from the bridal gown can make a big difference to the reception. Make a grand entry with a fantastic gown for the ceremony and later stun all the guests by appearing in a short high-end party dress in white with lace.
Old Wedding Photos of the Family
Consider having wedding photos of the family instead of just old photos. These photos can be used instead of card décor, or they can be incorporated as table numbers making it more personal. Guests will be intrigued to check them all out, and you will find them moving between tables. This will especially help when you want your guests to mix around when they do not know each other. Having old wedding photos will start many conversations, and you will also be able to save a plenitude of money that you would otherwise be spent on printed goods or additional décor.
Worst Mistakes Couples can make in Planning their Wedding
Choosing the Wrong Venue
The venue you choose will have a major influence on your wedding celebrations. Selecting cheap venue that offers cramped space and poor service can turn your wedding into a disaster. Make sure you select a grand space such as wedding venues in Gaston County NC, or it could even be an exotic location.
Overshooting the Budget
Once you have made a reasonable budget, make sure you keep to it. Many couples are tempted with all the things that are offered by the wedding industry, and invariably tend to overspend on things that are actually not required or really even wanted that much. Make a list of things that are critical to you, and try to stay within the planned budget.
Not Focusing on the Wedding Ceremony
Many couples focus mainly on the reception and do not give much thought to the ceremony. In fact, the ceremony is the major event and the reception is celebrating that event. Hence, pay more attention to the vows, the readings, and the music, to make the ceremony memorable.
Not Being Prepared for Things that might go Wrong
Many couples are not even aware that things could go wrong with their plans and that it is always better to have a backup plan. Sometimes vendors do not deliver the items on time, and you could be left without bouquets or your guest might have to wait a long time for food when the caterer is late.
To avoid such disasters, make a friend remind the vendors of their deliveries much before the expected time. If a vendor fails to deliver, have a list of alternate vendors who can deliver the items within a short time. Another major setback is bad weather, especially when the ceremony and reception is held outdoors. Make sure to have an alternate indoor location in case it starts to rain or the weather turns bad.
Imbibing Oneself on the Night before the Wedding Day
This is a common mistake where the bride or groom gets drunk at their bachelorette or bachelor parties on the night before their wedding. The last thing you want is turning up at your wedding with a headache, upset stomach, or with a fuzzy head.