Reliability and Quality
The main purpose of this blog is to provide some assurance that this is a real and trustworthy business. I want couples to feel comfortable handing their money over to me, when I may be in a different country from them, and at the beginning of the process, just a website on the internet, which could be controlled by anyone. This blog, and the Facebook page are intended to show that we are a genuine and fully operational, energetic wedding planning business. I average one wedding per week at the moment, although of course Summer months are busier than Winter months. Several of the couples I have worked with have left me a review on Facebook, and this very public, uncensored system should show that people are happy with the service I provide.
I always ask for feedback from the couples I work with. And I listen to what they say. These days I get really happy people telling me how they felt relaxed in the lead-up to their wedding and that they could trust in me that I would deliver the wedding day they asked for. In many cases they tell me that the people I book for their wedding day are even better than they expected. There have been times when I get some great suggestions from couples on how to improve, and where possible I take those suggestions on board and make changes.
I work with several City Hall registered officiants. Many of them have been celebrating and leading weddings for several years, and know New York City and Central Park very well. I will ask a couple at the very beginning of our planning process if there is anything in particular they want from an officiant and I will match the officiant to the couple from the group I work with. Everyone I work with is an excellent communicator and a reliable, cordial person with a great enthusiasm for celebrating love and marriage. I have been asked to provide officiants who can perform a wedding in two languages, gay officiants, ordained officiants, and an officiant who can also provide public notary services and I have been able to provide them.
The photographers I work with know Central Park and New York City very well. They are creative and artistic and know the spots to get those perfect iconic shots of Central Park. They are all friendly and easy-going people and couples tell me that this really helps to make their wedding day special, since they spend two or even more hours with the photographer, getting those beautiful photos of the couple with the striking backdrop of Central Park, that will be hanging on their walls for the rest of their lives together.
I work with two videographers who have been doing the job for many years. We can produce the video pretty much however you want it, if you let us know in advance. We can also put any special music you request in the soundtrack.
I recommend an excellent hair and make-up team, who are great fun and extremely talented people who also regularly work on models and celebrities and New York City. Many brides have told me that their bubbly energy has helped them to relax before the wedding. And the photos prove what a great job they did on helping the brides look incredible on their special day, and well in to the evening.
Our Manhattan-based florist is renowned for her dexterity, innate artistry, and impeccable design sense. She is a favorite among New York brides and event planners and has been featured in several national media outlets. We have a great working relationship and she has always provided amazing bouquets, in many cases just from a couple of photos provided by the bride. She is always ready and able to procure the requested flowers, and to make any changes we need if a bride changes her mind.
The musicians I work with are talented and amiable people, also they really enjoy being involved in weddings. I will pass on their repertoire list to couples so that they can choose which pieces they would like to be played before, during and after their wedding ceremony. There have been many occasions where the couple want a piece that is special to them and not on the list of pieces the musician knows. With enough notice, our musicians can learn a specially requested piece for a wedding.
I have worked through plans for each wedding in as much detail as the couple needs. Some are happy with the bare bones of a plan and can go with the expertise of our people on the day. Some need a detailed plan of timings, with instructions on where to be and when for all involved. For example, the photographer might need to know keep the bride out of sight of the groom and guests, and to give a sign to the musician and officiant so that the bride can be announced and the musician can play a special piece of music for the bride to walk down the pathway to the ceremony location to. That extra-special big entrance can be perfectly planned and co-ordinated.
I have a process that broadly guides me in how I plan each wedding, that process has been developed, practiced and enhanced through the years I have been planning weddings in Central Park. That said, each couple is different, and my position as the sole owner of this business, means that I can decide whether it is possible to do whatever a couple asks for their wedding day, and usually I can find a way to do it. The process involves a method of developing the ceremony wording with the couple, using a list of questions that allows me to write something that is unique to each couple, while keeping within the traditional structure of a wedding ceremony in many cases. I have done weddings that are not in Central Park, where some couples have requested it, and made various last-minute changes to accommodate couples. I like to be as obliging and accommodating as possible.
I agree exactly what I will provide for a wedding with a couple in advance of taking a deposit from them. I write out a contract between them and Wed in Central Park which clearly states what they have told me that they want me to provide for their wedding day. But things can change. Couples might want a little longer with the photographer, they might want extra flowers added to their order, they may want to get married at a different time, or even a different day. I have been able to accommodate these changes in the vast majority of cases.
I have a team of great people whom I have been working with for several years. If a couple were to book an officiant or photographer themselves and they had any kind of emergency that stopped them from being able to do the wedding then, unless that person could find anyone else to do it at the last minute, they would be stuck. In all the weddings I have planned, we have not had this happen very often, but one of my officiants had a very sick family member some time ago and she had to go and care for them. We had a couple of weddings scheduled but I was able to cover them without any disruption to the couples because I work with plenty of other people who can cover it.
I do have a great team of people, but the most important thing in my mind when planning all weddings is that it should all be just as the couple wants it to be. So, that means that I am happy for couples to have me arrange part of it and for them to arrange part of it if they want. For example, they might have a very specific idea of what kind of photographer they want, and they may want to select from the vast choice that New York City offers and book their own photographer, which is fine with me. They may have a particular musician they want to play at the ceremony, and that is fine, too. We can tailor each of the packages that are listed on the website to fit with any couple’s needs. We have also been able to be very flexible with the ceremony itself, and have very heavy involvement from the wedding guests, which the officiant can be there to witness for legal reasons and assist with their expertise.
The biggest hazard of having an outdoor wedding is how difficult it is to predict the weather. I have had to reschedule a few weddings due to bad weather, mostly during the Spring and Autumn months when rain can come as a surprise. The people I work with value their relationship with me and will often make themselves available to reschedule a wedding where possible. Many of them do work more than one job, though, and will have other commitments, so this will not always be possible. This would be true of any officiant or photographer that may have been booked privately by a couple. With us, though, if a service provider cannot reschedule, then I am able to call on the many other contacts I have to quickly find someone else to replace them, which I have done a few times now, and this allows us to reschedule weddings in case of bad weather.
Every couple has different needs, but I have a process that broadly guides me in how I plan each wedding. Whenever something new comes up that I haven’t known before then that might get added in to the process. This is to make sure that everyone is very clear on what is expected of each other before we sign the contract, and then to guide the couple through a logical and easy route of planning their wedding, starting with the bigger issues and moving on to the smaller details as we get closer to the date.
I have been asked lots of questions about the paperwork required to get married. I have been to City Hall to get my own marriage license. I have also been to City Hall to pick up my own short license, long license and Apostille, and I have also picked up the same paperwork for other couples. I know the process. I can answer all questions relating to getting this paperwork, but I can not tell you what your country requires for you to be legally married. This differs from country to country. Different couples will have different needs and I keep getting feedback from couples about other City Halls besides Manhattan, how to find a public notary, what to do if you are struggling to get the license 24 hours before the ceremony, and various other things, so in many cases I can help with any issues that crop up.
Wed in Central Park has applied for almost two hundred event permits for weddings in Central Park. I know the process and I have lots of experience in dealing with the staff at the Central Park Conservancy. I can usually predict how long it will take to process any applications, and what a couple’s chances are of getting their first choice of date, time and location depending on how much notice they have left to get their permit.
I know the park, I used to live nearby and I got married there myself. I have attended lots of weddings there and aided many couples getting married there, and got lots of feedback. I can listen to a couple describe the kind of location in which they would like to have their wedding ceremony, in terms of its size, views, privacy, distance from other locations, shelter and amenities. We can work together to choose the right locations in Central Park for their ceremony and for their photographs.
I have been planning weddings for couples getting married in Central Park since 2012 when I started Wed in Central Park. As I write this at the end of 2016 I have done around one hundred and eighty weddings. I have got quite good at it, even if I do say so myself. Most questions are easy for me to answer because most questions have been asked before by other couples. I have been asked to recommend various service providers, such as florists and hair and makeup people and bakers and car companies. I have a great working relationship with many of the people I recommend, and I do not recommend anyone that I do not get impressive feedback about.
I can talk about the intricacies of your wedding day plan for as long as you like. How long will it take to get a cab from your hotel to the particular Central Park entrance that you’ll need to walk in from? What route should you or your guests take through Central Park after the ceremony, either to get the best photos for you, or to take the easiest route to where those guests will be enjoying a cocktail while the couple have more photos taken?
My four years of planning weddings has helped me to develop a process that broadly guides me in how I plan each wedding. I use this tried and tested process to guide the couples through their wedding planning in a structured and well-defined manner. Couples tell me that this keeps them feeling organised, in control and relaxed in the run-up to their wedding.