As great as many, many elements of putting together our wedding have been for us (I mean helloooo, our amazing invitations!), I've gotta be honest: I can see exactly why so many people get so pissed off at the wedding industry. Here's what Adams-Hanger '09 is getting increasingly resentful about these days: simple requests to our wedding venue that produce an absurdly laughable result. Enter: ceremony refreshments.
Because we're starting our ceremony a bit later than guests think it's going to start, we'd planned to have simple music and refreshments available so that everyone can mingle and be lively while they wait, rather than staying seated and wondering if the two of us ran off somewhere (only with each other, of course). A punch station seemed like a great, cute way to do this. Three glass canisters with a different type of beverage in each: water with fruit, lemonade, and a standard fruit punch. Cute signage on the canisters. No alcohol involved. Self-serve, even. The price quoted back to us? $500.
$500 for a punch station. Really.
There are three directions to go here, seems to me. One is to shrug it off and tack it onto the bill - honestly, I think most people probably do this, or the venue wouldn't be so cavalier about the price. I am not one of those people. One is to bitchily latch onto the $500 punch station as representing the greedy underbelly of the entire wedding industry, and perhaps vent about it on blog posts. Another is to tell the venue rep (who my mom loves and the F-Word routinely wants to strangle, interestingly) that it's a ridiculous price and therefore a no-go and to move on. I guess I'm doing both of the last two - I told her no already, but instead of moving on, I can't stop getting pissed about it.
Getting married in the remote area of my choosing means that our options for venues were severely limited compared with most any other place in the country. We really do love our venue, though, and chose it because of how easily it can accommodate our whole crowd in one place for an entire weekend - no driving between locations, no getting lost, etc. But going with this venue also meant we were beholden to them for all food and beverages. I don't think I fully realized at the time we signed on just how big a deal that is. Frankly, food and beverage is the part of our expense spreadsheet that keeps us up at night.
We have gorgeous invitations bursting with our personalities, we have a weekend full of events that will bring together our favorite people, we have saying 'I Do' at the end of it all and not looking back... those are fantastic things. The $500 punch station, though? It makes me want to punch someone. Not very "bridal" of me, I know.