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Wedding Planning & Tips

Fun for Everyone: Planning An Interactive Wedding

As you are planning your wedding reception, it is good to think about how you will be entertaining your guests. The typical wedding has only one answer, guests will be entertained by dancing. But what about your guests that don’t enjoy dancing or the kids that might attend your wedding? How can you keep them interested so they don’t leave right after the cake cutting? Many brides today are finding other activities to entertain guests, and make their wedding reception a fun and memorable event for everyone.

Playful Games

What could be easier to entertain your guests than throwing in some fun games? It really can be this easy: put out fun games that will engage your guests, and get them mixing with each other. Games like Jenga, pick-up sticks, and checkers are great options because everyone knows how to play them, so it’s easy to get your guests to participate. If games seem too rowdy for your reception, a scavenger hunt might be more your style. Create cards with lists of fun items throughout your reception venue that your guests can search for. You don’t have to give a prize, but guests will be encouraged to get up out of their chairs and move around. If you are having a hard time with deciding what to give as party favors, consider giving little pocket games. They will be a fun alternative to the typical favor, and your guests can play a little, too.

wedding polaroid

Fun Photo Ops

If games aren’t your style, then perhaps something a little more traditional will do. Your guests will love seeing pictures of you and your new husband from throughout your lives and relationship. Put together a slideshow that will run during your reception. This is a popular option for many couples because it adds an extra personal touch, and helps guests get to know both the bride and groom.  If you like the idea of pictures, but want something more fun than a slideshow, hire a photo booth. Photo booths are a fun way to get your guests up and moving, and it also gives them a keepsake from your day. Some couples work with the photo booth company to get two copies of every picture. One copy goes to your guests, the other copy can be pasted in a scrapbook as a keepsake for you. While you are thinking about pictures, don’t forget about social media. With cell phone cameras sure to be everywhere, take advantage of your guest’s desire to take their own pictures and create a unique hashtag that your guests can use when posting on social media. This is an easy way to get a fun, free photo album with candid pictures that your photographer might not catch.

smores bar 1Unique Food

Food is a great way to add a little something fun to your reception. Instead of serving just cake, consider a DYI dessert bar. These can be fun for both the adults and kids attending your wedding. Fun ideas that your guest will surely enjoy include a sundae bar, a smores bar or a cupcake decorating station. If a DYI dessert bar seems too complicated or messy, a chocolate fountain is another great option. Make sure you have plenty of fruits, candy, marshmallows, and cookies–a little something for everyone.

Exciting Music

The last thing to remember when planning your reception is to never underestimate the importance of the DJ or the band. Good music can entice the most reluctant of dancers onto the floor. Take time to do your research on the bands or DJs you may be considering for your event. A good band or DJ will know what music will get your guests up and moving. Take the time to work with them to build a playlist that not only reflects your tastes but will be fun for your guests.

Weddings don’t have to be the standard food, cake, and dancing anymore.  Brides everywhere are stepping out and including fun activities for their guests. The internet is full of great ideas for how to include fun, entertaining activities to your party. Taking the time to plan something fun for your guests will make the day even more memorable for everyone.

Wedding Planning & Tips

8 Cute Gift Ideas for Newlywed Couples

A bride and groom are sure to be given all the essentials like towels, sheets, pots, pans, place settings, and glassware for their wedding. But if you want to do something extra special and unique that the newlywed couple will be sure to love, then consider giving one of these ideas. The bride and groom will love getting something that isn’t off of the traditional registry list and that is something fun just for them to enjoy.

tea towels

Matching Dish Towels

See the kitchen towel set on Pinterest with one saying “You Wash” and the other “I’ll Dry”? Did you pin it to one of your folders? Totally! They are super cute and fun and a newlywed couple would love to showcase them in their new nest together. While being very practical, these cute kitchen towels are a fun conversation piece.

His and Her Coasters

A foodie couple that also loves some fine wine, cocktail creations, brews, and great coffee will love a fun place to set their glass or morning mug. Check out Etsy to see if you can find a maker that sells monogram coasters, or simply choose an already-made set that says his and hers.


Ring Dishes

One thing that’s for certain is newly married and engaged girls love showing off their rings. Give the couple a cute double ring dish for them to place their rings before bed, or beside the bathroom or kitchen sink. They can be customized with the couple’s names or initials, or simply cute nicknames like “hubby” and “wifey.” A newlywed couple isn’t used to wearing rings every day yet, so an extra dish to protect rings from slipping down sinks when doing the dishes or brushing teeth will be appreciated.


Matching Mugs

A couple just can’t start off their marriage without adorable, matching mugs. No matter if they prefer coffee or tea, the newlyweds will love waking up every morning and relaxing before bed with a Mr. and Mrs. mug.

stamped spoons

Stamped Spoons

Ice cream will become even sweeter with a stamped silver spoon set that reads Mr. and Mrs. or Husband and Wife.


Marriage Pillow

Newlywed couples can always use a hand with décor pieces to fill their home and a pillow that says Mr. and Mrs. will be so sweet and cozy on a bed, couch, bench, or chair. What a perfect opportunity for snuggly nights in!


Monogram Door Hanger

What newlywed couple doesn’t love shouting to the whole world that they are married? Give them a way to announce their everlasting love with a door hanger customized with the couple’s initials and date of their wedding.

Tickets to a Class

If you love getting people experiences more than buying them gifts, a perfect idea for a newlywed couple would be a cooking class, mixology class, or a sexy lap dance class. They will be getting tons of cute objects for their home from friends and family, so give them something they can get out of the house with and enjoy each other’s company.

If you don’t want to have to give a newlywed couple another platter, you don’t have to! Instead, the couple would love to receive something that is fun, playful, and lets them celebrate their new life together in style.

Wedding Planning & Tips

The Do’s and Don’ts of Choosing Your Wedding Favors

Wedding favors are one of those essential parts on almost every wedding checklist you’ll read and inside every wedding planning how-to book you’ll receive as a bride-to-be. It is traditional to give favors to your guests thanking them for coming to your wedding, although, they don’t have to be the same favors that have made an exhaustive presence at nearly every wedding. And they also don’t have to be cheap little trinkets that your guests don’t actually like.

Follow these tips and choose something you and your guests will actually be excited about.

Do: Choose Something that Means Something to You

It’s always best to give guests something that actually holds meaning to you rather than just finding anything to give. And don’t think that the favor needs to be an actual item on every table. It can also be something that is meant to enhance your guest’s experience at your wedding. Think about where your funds could be better spent, like upgrading the DJ to a band, or renting a photo booth or a performer to entertain guests at dinner. They will remember something that wows and excites more than an object.

wedding favor 3

Don’t: Choose a Favor Out of Necessity

And this brings us to our next pointer. Don’t feel like you have to give a favor to guests. They won’t be upset if they don’t receive something and will appreciate you spending some extra money on better food or another fun element than on unnecessary favors. If you do want guests to be able to leave with something from your wedding, consider combining a dessert or candy table with the favor. Set up a serve-yourself buffet of small goodies like mini cupcakes or petit fours, or multiple vases of different candies along with miniature takeout boxes for guests to fill up. Your guests will love indulging in some amazing sweets rather than getting stuck with some trinket that is irrelevant as soon as they bring it home.

Do: Donate to a Favorite Charity

If you and your fiancé share a special place in your hearts for a certain charity or cause, consider using the money you’d normally spend on favors to make a donation to that foundation. This eliminates many bride’s concern of being wasteful with favors that guests may just throw out, and ensures that the money is well spent. You can involve your guests if you’d like by choosing two of your favorite charities and having guests vote at the wedding. Your guests will be touched by your thoughtfulness and won’t even think of not receiving a favor.

Don’t: DIY Edible Favors

All the amazingly decorated cake pops and printed chocolates with your initials look fabulous on Pinterest, but when it comes to making them yourself, the result is often totally different. Those favors are most often made by professionals who have honed their decorating skills and who know how to bake, craft chocolate, and avoid any common allergy-sensitive ingredients. Edible favors should be made during the week of your wedding and you’ll just be way too busy to even think about making favors that taste good and look great, anyways. Either give this task to a wedding day coordinator, hire a wedding helper, or hire a dessert maker for edible favors. Or, simply follow our advice above and set up a dessert or candy buffet and let guests choose what they want.

wedding favor edible

Do: Choose a Useful Favor

If you absolutely love the idea of giving guests favors, then try and choose something at least slightly useful. Although these may seem to be pretty traditional, candles are something almost everyone can enjoy and use at home. Quality soy candles aren’t cheap in the stores, so if you can purchase them in bulk at a discount and give them to guests, they will surely be appreciative and will be excited to bring their little goodie home. Look on sites like Etsy to find candles that allow you to customize them with certain scents (your wedding flowers?), colors, and with a quote, your wedding date, or your initials.

Don’t: Forget About Presentation

If you are going with individual favors for guests, keep in mind where they will be when you plan the decor on the tables. They are typically either placed on the plates or directly in front of each guest’s place setting. When you’re considering this, you may realize that you don’t like how everything will look together and that the favors don’t blend well with the décor, or they take away from the look you’re going for. Additionally, favors can often cheapen the look of an elegant table. Consider adding another table to place all your favors for guests, but be sure to have someone announce the favor table or delegate a bridesmaid to go around and let each table know during dinner so guests don’t forget to grab one before they leave.

Do: Consider Mother Nature

Favors don’t have to be wasteful, tacky, or impractical. They can be something that guests are excited about receiving, like a box full of yummy treats or a lovely candle. And the great thing about giving guests something they will actually use or consume is that you’re also being nice to the environment. You can consider giving guests a small succulent in a pot or packets of seeds placed in recycled paper. Every time your guests look at their little plant, or as they watch the seeds grow into flowers in their yards, they’ll think about your big day.

wedding favors 2

Definitely Do: Include a Personalized Note

If you follow some of the tips we’ve provided, your guests will love what you choose for them. But at the end of the day, nothing is more special or memorable than a sweet, personalized note from you and your fiancé. Take some time to think about what you want to say to your guests that you probably won’t get the chance to in-person, and don’t simply copy something you found online. Even if you decide to skip out on the favors, include a special note on each guest’s place setting or write your message on a large piece of paper or glass in a cool frame to display your love and appreciation for your guests.

Consider these helpful tips and ideas when thinking about the favors for your wedding, and base your decision off of what feels right and most special to you.

You can’t have favors without an amazing venue to accommodate your guests. Check out the beautiful indoor wedding venue at the Vatican Banquet Hall and prepare to wow your guests.

Wedding Planning & Tips

7 Things To Do After You Say “I Do”

Now that your wedding is over, you can sit back, relax, and reminisce about all the amazing moments you had; What happened as you hoped it would? What happened spur of the moment and was so much more memorable? No matter what you’re daydreaming about post-nuptials, it feels good to have all the planning over with. But it’s not totally over! There are still a few wedding-related items you need to tick off your to-do list after you get hitched.

Send Thank You Notes

Yep, you need to address and stamp just as many envelopes as you did with the invitations. But unlike the invites, you need to hand write every thank you for a genuine and personal touch. Everyone appreciates receiving a customized, handwritten note thanking them for their attendance and gifts, and as such, make this step the most important one after the wedding. Wedding etiquette experts suggest sending your thank you notes about two to three months after the big day.

Take Care of Your Dress

Whether you want your future daughter to wear your wedding gown, you want to resell it, or you simply want to keep it in good condition over the years, it’ll be important to have it cleaned or preserved shortly after the wedding. Sweat, makeup, dust, food stains, and spilled champagne can make your perfect dress a tad less impeccable, and taking care of it will bring it back to its original luster and keep it that way for years to come.

Change Your Name

This is an exciting part of getting married if you plan to change your last name. But it isn’t a one-step process. Gather all the necessary documents you need shortly after the wedding to get the process going. You’ll most likely need your driver’s license, birth certificate, and a certified copy of your marriage license to update your driver’s license, social security card, and your passport. It’s not so easy as simply using your new last name, is it? But as soon as you can get these processes going, the better, and the sooner you’ll officially be the new Mrs.


Purchase any Leftover Registry Items

For a limited amount of time after your wedding, you’ll be able to purchase items off of your own registry and be awarded points or cash back, depending on where you registered. And you’ll still receive a registry discount for a certain amount of time, so plan a fun day at the store with your new spouse and complete your registry.

Return Duplicate Registry Items

When you shop for the items you didn’t get, you should also return any duplicate items (or undesirable items you received that weren’t on your registry) as soon as you can after you return from your honeymoon. Return them for store credit and use the combined total to purchase a big ticketed item, or exchange them for items you really want.

Sell any DIY Décor

If you made a bunch of décor items for your wedding, such as centerpieces and ceremony touches, you probably don’t have much use for them anymore. But that doesn’t mean the time and money you invested in them have to go to waste. There are so many brides out there planning their weddings that would love the crafts you made for a fraction of the price of buying new. Post your DIY items on eBay or Etsy, or find a local wedding planner or wedding décor professional who might want to buy them from you and rent them out to their brides.

newlyweds on beach

Relax and Enjoy Married Life!

Once you get these to-dos all done, you’ll officially be in your first leg of marriage, and it’s time to fully enjoy being a Mrs. If you are planning a honeymoon that jet sets right after the wedding, soak up that time together before heading back home. And if you’ll have a delayed honeymoon trip, be sure to spend a few days after the wedding just enjoying being married before worrying about getting these things done.

If you’re in the midst of planning your dream wedding and are looking for a mesmerizing venue, check out the Vatican Banquet Hall who specializes in delivering unforgettable ceremonies and receptions that will leave you daydreaming long after your big day.

Party Planning & Tips Wedding Planning & Tips

Bridal Shower Games That Everyone Will Want to Play

Silly games are a fun part of a bridal shower, but the same games that seem to be at every shower get old quick. However, it is possible to choose unique game ideas that everyone will actually enjoy playing and that don’t include any awkward moments or embarrassing tasks.

Guess Who

Also known as Celebrity or HedBanz, this game involves each guest receiving an index card with the name of an iconic person. Guests aren’t allowed to peek at their card and they are secured onto everyone’s forehead to ensure no one knows who they have. Each guest gets their turn at receiving hints about who they are until they can guess. For a wedding twist, you can use the names of people, places, or things that hold significance to the bride and groom.

Bride-Groom Trivia

Contact the bride and groom’s relatives for stories from their childhood and any other details, and type up a multiple choice quiz with trivia about the bride and groom for the guests to fill out. Reading all the questions and answers out loud will make for a hilarious time and you can select the guest with the most right answers as the winner.

Nickname Guessing Game

Give each guest a slip of paper to write their little-known nicknames on. The fun comes from having everyone guess what nickname goes to who as you pull the written slips of paper out of a bowl. Hand out pre-numbered sheets of paper and have each guest write their guesses down for the number that corresponds with each guest’s name.

Cootie Catcher

Remember those times on the playground giggling with friends over the cootie catcher? It will be just as fun with all the ladies at the bridal shower. Start by assigning someone based on different options like Bride, Your Choice, Everyone, or Bride’s Choice, and spell the name of the chosen person or word “everyone” as you move the cootie catcher’s flaps in and out and side to side in rhythm with the letters. Next, ask the selected person to pick a number and move the flaps again as you count. Once you’ve counted, have the person pick a number again and then reveal what that flap instructs, which can be to make a toast, give a piece of marriage advice, tell your own love story, take a silly photo, or share a fun fact about the bride or groom.

Guess the Bride’s Age

Put together a board full of pictures of the bride displaying her at different ages. Be sure to mix them up so they’re not in order and hand a pencil and paper to everyone and ask them to guess the bride’s age by writing down their guess next to the line that corresponds with each photo’s number. Award a gift to whoever has the most right.

Find Your Match

This is a perfect game to keep with the love theme of the shower and involves having guests find their other celebrity love interest. Write the names of famous celebrity couples on sections of paper, with each member on either side of a heart, and use decorative scissors to cut down the center of the heart to create two cards. Place a card on each guest’s seat and ask them to go find their match. Make sure to include the bride and groom as one of the couples.


Just about everyone is aware of the hilarious game of telephone and it can be just as fun now as it was back in elementary school. Put a written instruction card on a guest’s seat which asks her to initiate a toast, which can be anything from well-wishes to the couple or a funny story of the bride or groom. The toast will be whispered from guest to guest and hilariously mangled and mixed as it gets farther away from the original toast giver. Have the initiator announce the original message and the mixed up version from the group when the message gets back around to the start. Give each guest a turn at starting and sending off a toast.

You Know When…

The finish-that-thought bridal shower game is inspired by mad libs and is a fun way to gather marriage tips from each guest. After each lady is finished writing down their answer to the beginning of the written sentence, such as “You know you’re in love when…” or “Once upon a time..” have her write her name on the back of the card and place it in a stack. The answers will most likely range from serious to silly and it will be fun when everyone has to guess who wrote what. The cards then leave with the bride after the shower and make for super sweet keepsakes.

Choose one or a few of these games for guests to play at your upcoming bridal shower and you’ll have everyone pleasantly surprised and delighted.




Wedding Planning & Tips

Top Wedding Trends for 2016

The Pinterest explosion led the way for thousands of brides in recent years, but this year’s wedding season is seeing brides more interested in creating a wedding that is all their own. Couples in 2016 want to walk down the aisle and party the night away in a way that showcases their unique personality, and that doesn’t look dated or too trendy.

If you’re craving to learn what’s hot and what’s not in wedding trends this year, keep reading and get inspired for your upcoming nuptials!

wedding trends vatican banquet hall

The Look:

Bright, Bold and Shiny. Metallic tones can be seen in almost every wedding magazine and for good reason: they are incredibly versatile and can be used for a number of wedding styles and venues. Metallics can be elegant, ethereal, whimsical, modern, and even boho. They can be used as little touches on the invites and on the tables, or they can be made front and center with glitzy, sequined tablecloths or runners, and bridesmaids dresses. Rose gold is an especially popular metallic and can be seen gracing everything from the bride’s ring to table linens. Bold colors are also being used by themselves or paired with metallic for more playful wedding themes.

Use bold hues to add pops of color to otherwise soft, neutral palettes. A trendy color theme is pastels, creams, and garden greens, and many brides are adding in sunny yellows, bright oranges, corals, and vibrant fuchsias to make a statement.

The Flowers:

Wild and Free Form. The “I just picked these from a garden” floral arrangement and bouquet are seriously on trend for 2016. More brides are moving away from the sleek, perfectly rounded bouquets and want a more whimsical, romantic look and feel. The rise of “going green” is another catapult for this trend since many brides are interested in using what is currently in season and local to their area.

Many brides are also choosing less-traditional “flowers” for arrangements and mixing in edibles like kale, cabbage, and herbs like mint and basil into bouquets, centerpieces, and boutonnieres. Succulents are still trending as well and are especially popular for edgier brides.

The Dress:

Less Wedding, More Oscar-Ready. Brides nowadays are more willing to bend the traditional rules of the wedding gown. More are turning towards sexier and risqué styles and turning away from cupcake shapes. Modern brides are interested in showing off their curves and their personalities. Form-fitting silhouettes and open backs will be seen more and more in 2016 in magazines and family weddings alike. It is always advisable, however, to choose what you feel most comfortable in rather than trying to stay on trend. If you love the classic wedding dress look, great. But if you’re excited to make a fashion statement rather than be another blushing bride, go for it!

The Food:

Home cooked and Ethnic. More and more couples are leaving the typical wedding food behind and are giving their guests a treat by making comfort food front and center on the menu. Think miniature hamburgers, mac and cheese, mini grilled cheeses, and even milk and cookies. Couples are also choosing to focus less on fancy food and go with cuisine that is traditional to their heritage. Southern dishes, Polish cuisine, and homey Italian make for a more personalized event depending on the couple’s family’s background.

The Reception:

Family Style. With couples wanting a “homier” and more personalized atmosphere at their wedding, family-style dinners with long rectangular tables will be growing in popularity throughout this wedding season. However, long skinny tables mean less room for décor and food platters. Many couples are adding chef stations and dessert tables to spread out the food and create a more relaxed experience for guests without having to do assigned seating.

Other 2016 wedding trends include destination weddings and mixing various styles. Many couples are choosing to skip an elaborate home-based wedding and want something exciting, fun and fresh in a tropical location or up in the mountains. And as far as décor and theme ideas go, brides are mixing modern elements with vintage and farm-style décor. This year, if you’re going to be a wedding guest, expect to be wowed by a reception that combines farm tables, vintage plates and seating, geometric centerpieces, and glamorous chandelier lighting.

If we had to pick a theme for 2016 weddings, it would have to be: Be authentic and have fun! And we can’t imagine a better slogan.

For a unique and beautiful venue to set as the backdrop for your personality-filled wedding, check out the Vatican Banquet Hall in Los Angeles.

Wedding Planning & Tips

The Most Beautiful Flowers for Your Spring Wedding

Spring is a beautiful time of year to have a wedding. There are so many lovely flowers in season to choose from, like the ever-popular peony, and it is the perfect representation of your new beginning with your sweetheart. If you’re getting married this spring, read on to discover the ten most gorgeous flower varieties that will be in season.

1.      Peony

This fluffy, romantic bloom is a favorite among brides everywhere, and they are perfect for bouquets and centerpieces alike. Peonies provide the perfect amount of softness and fluffy bulk for your flower arrangements. And the pastel hues are perfect for a variety of wedding palettes.

2.      Rose

The rose is a classic beauty that is perfect for a bouquet, centerpiece, boutonniere, and the aisle runner. Roses are also very versatile and are available in light pink, dark pink, red, white, and even lavender to match your wedding colors. And if you don’t like the idea of throwing rice, or your venue doesn’t allow it, rose petals are a perfect alternative.

3.      Sweet Pea

Sweet peas add interest and variation in texture and height to a bouquet. This flower variation displays a medium purple bloom that is climbing in nature, so it provides some nice foliage towards the bottom and sides of your bouquet. If you’ve always wanted a cascading bouquet, sweet peas are perfect for adding the flowing element that embodies this bouquet style.

4.      Lilac

Lilacs are incredibly romantic and give off the most intoxicating scent. Fill your ceremony or reception with lilacs and everyone will be under a spell. The soft purple hue works well with other pastel colors, as well as the more modern dove-gray.

5.      Ranunculus

This flower is like a cross between a peony and a rose. They are round with rose-like petals and add a certain pop when added to simple flower arrangements. The ranunculus is a perfect alternative flower if your budget doesn’t allow for tons of peonies and full roses.

6.      Hydrangea

Hydrangeas are like snowballs with petals. They make a statement whether by themselves or in a bouquet. They also make for wow-worthy centerpieces, and you can save money because you don’t need as many to fill a vase.

7.      Tulip

Tulips are the epitome of springtime blooms, and they provide a fresh look to both formal and informal weddings. Tulips have clean lines, making them appropriate for elegant restaurant venues, as well as a sleek element in a rustic bouquet.

8.      Succulent

These flower look-alikes provide the perfect alternative to traditional bouquets for edgy brides. They provide some fresh, green tones which are perfect for a spring wedding, and they can do double-duty as guest favors.

9.      Gerbera Daisy

For the bold bride, these colorful spring flowers are perfect for a more casual wedding, such as backyard or barn venues. Gerbera daisies are one of the friendliest flowers and will be sure to make everyone smile.

10.   Magnolia.

Magnolias are one of the most elegant spring flowers available. They are perfect for pairing with other blooms in a centerpiece, or, they make for the perfect single flower to carry down the aisle.

As you’re planning your spring wedding, consider incorporating some of these gorgeous blooms to all of your flower arrangements for pops of color, texture, and natural perfume. Tip: remember to plan the décor with your venue in mind and choose flowers accordingly for their color and shape.

Wedding Planning & Tips

Making Your Wedding Reception Kid-Friendly

Children can be a lot of fun at weddings, especially when they are busting their cute little moves on the dance floor. However, long periods of sitting still and being quiet can be difficult for young children who naturally have very short attention span and a lot of energy. At some point, boredom kicks in, they may become restless, hungry and overtired which can lead to tantrums, tears and frazzled parents.While many couples feel strongly that their wedding should be an adults-only party, many others can’t imagine their wedding without all the little ones in their lives being present. If you’re inviting kids to your wedding, here are six tips from Vatican Banquet Hall that will keep any group of young guests happy — and keep you calm, cool, and collected.

Have a morning or early-afternoon wedding

Turns out, kids go to bed super early. Having a brunch wedding will make life easier on parents and will mean you won’t have a bunch of cranky kids in need of a nap at your reception. In addition, breakfast and lunch foods are very kid-friendly.

 Skip the place cards and set out a bundle of fun activities for them instead

It’s usually best for kids to sit with their parents at the reception, but see if you can have a few quiet activities for the children, such as crayons and paper cards they can decorate for the bride and groom. You can also cover the kids’ table(s) with white butcher paper and put out a pile of crayons. Let kids cover the table with drawings. They’ll be so busy, they’ll forget they’re still actually sitting at a table.

Consider hiring a babysitter for the reception

This is especially thoughtful if most of your guests are coming from out of town. You can have the sitter corral them at the venue or sitter set up in a nearby hotel room and invite the kiddos to a slumber and pizza party during the wedding. Either way, it gives people the chance to enjoy themselves as adults, not as parents, and will keep other guests from getting annoyed with those obnoxious kids whose parents always seem to have magically disappeared.

Set up a kid’s area for the reception that has fun activities

Think age-appropriate activities (word searches, coloring books) and games (hot potato, checkers).

Include kid-friendly music at the wedding

Even if you have a band, you might also consider hiring a DJ for the kids. He or she can entertain between sets. Inquire about a team of dance instructors – another kid-friendly method of entertainment. By providing music and dances targeted at a younger age group, you’re allowing them to participate in the wedding in a way.

Work with your venue

Ask your venue if they have any recommendations for kids; you may learn that they have a side room that’s perfect for setting up a kids’ table or hosting some kind of kids’ entertainment.

Wedding Planning & Tips

Don’t Rule Out a Winter Wedding

It’s been reported that over 2 million couples get married every year in the United States, which breaks down to nearly 6,000 weddings a day. June is the most popular month for weddings, then August, followed by September and October, but what about December, January and February months?

If you want to stand out by not having “just another summer wedding” then getting married during the winter months can be the perfect time to celebrate your special day. Vatican Banquet Hall has provided several benefits of a winter wedding that is sure to make everyone involved happy. 

Wedding Planning & Tips

The Best Bridesmaid Gifts in 2016

Between flying themselves to your wedding, buying gowns that they will probably never wear again, and spending hundreds of dollars on a hair stylist and makeup artist so your wedding day photos look spectacular, your bridesmaids really do a lot for you. And while picking out the right bridesmaids gift can be a daunting task, there are a few presents that are guaranteed to be a hit with your besties and sisters. If you’re celebrating your nuptials in 2016, consider getting one or more of the following for your bridesmaids:

Silk Bridesmaid Robes

The quintessential bridesmaid gift, a beautiful silk robe will never go out of style and will look fantastic in photos on the morning of your wedding. There are dozens of shops that deliver high-quality, personalized robes for extremely affordable prices, but if you want custom monogramming, be sure to order with plenty of time to spare.

Silk Robes

Matching Cell Phone Cases

Because your bridesmaids will likely have their mobile phones with them for the entire day (except for during the wedding ceremony, hopefully), ordering matching cell phone cases is a great way to keep your girls in sync and can make for some really cute photos! (Note: be sure to ask husbands, boyfriends, or parents about what kind of cellphone each girl uses before ordering; cases are not one-size-fits-all.)

Matching Phone Cases

Really Nice Gloves

The perfect bridesmaid gift if your wedding takes place in a colder climate and you’ve decided that February is the perfect time to exchange “I Dos,” matching gloves will make your bridal party look fabulous and keep perfectly-manicured hands warm all at the same time. Your besties will probably keep your gift around for years too, especially if you decide to spend a little extra money on a good brand like Coach.

Coach Gloves

A Day at the Spa

While visiting the nail and hair salon on the morning of the wedding is a must for many brides, taking your girls out for a special spa treatment a few days before the wedding is an excellent way to relax without the immediate pressure of the wedding looming over the party. Get facials, drink champagne, and let your worries be massages away.

Day Spa


You really can’t go wrong with getting your girlfriends chocolate, and though they’ll likely devour it within a few days (or hours), it’s a gift you know they’ll absolutely love. In our opinion, the short-term joy from a sweet indulgence is every bit as valuable as a monogrammed trinket your sisters or friends will never use or wear.


For more inspiring wedding ideas, contact Vatican Banquet Hall today or check out the great resources on our Banquet Hall Blog!

Wedding Planning & Tips

The Best Groomsman Gifts in 2016

Your groomsman have rented tuxes, bought plane tickets, and written speeches to make sure you feel important on your wedding day, and as a small token of your appreciation, tradition dictates that you buy each of your groomsman a small thank you gift. Instead of picking out something cheesy that your brothers and friends will probably never use – a personalized beer stein, for example, or another flask that’s guaranteed to break and leak all over the inside of their coat – why not get your groomsmen something they’ll actually really like and use. If you’re searching for the perfect groomsman gifts for 2016, here are four can’t miss suggestions!

Personalized Leather Shave Bags

If you want your groomsmen to remember your wedding and friendship every time they go on vacation or take a business trip, consider purchasing one of these awesome, rugged leather shave bags. Handmade of high-quality leather and lined with water-resistant cloth, these sturdy bags will stand the test of time – just like you and your groomsmen’s friendship.


 Leather Shave Bag

Cool New Shades From Warby Parker

Not only are Warby Parker’s sunglasses extremely stylish, but the company is also devoted to improving the lives of those in need; for every pair of Warby Parker glasses sold, a pair of reading glasses is given to someone who isn’t able to afford eye care or prescription eye ware. Talk about a double whammy! Looking sharp in wedding day photos and helping your fellow man, all with one awesome groomsman gift!


Warby Parker Glasses

A Pendleton Blanket

While some may decry that blankets are not manly enough to be given out as groomsmen gifts, these people have probably never seen (or felt) a Pendleton Blanket before. Made from wool and cotton and available in dozens of masculine prints and colors, these classic “camping” blankets were designed to meet the rigorous demands of the Pacific Northwest. Worn over your shoulders in front of a campfire or decoratively thrown over your couch, Pendletons are manliness in blanket form.

Vatican Banquet Hall Blog - 2016 Groomsmen Gifts Pendleton Blanket

Tickets To A Sporting Event

While gifts are nice, sometimes a great experience (and the memories you make doing it) can be far more valuable than some monogrammed piece of junk. Consider taking your groomsmen out to a professional football, baseball, or hockey game, though this option typically only works if all the the groomsman live in or around the same city or the sporting event can double as the bachelor party!

Dodgers Game

For more excellent wedding planning tips and advice, contact Vatican Banquet Hall now!

Wedding Planning & Tips

Include SpeechBooth At Your Next Vatican Wedding!

Speeches are a favorite part of every wedding celebration, but time constraints usually mean that only a few people are permitted to stand up at the wedding reception and offer their congratulations to the bride and groom. But what about the hundreds of other guests who wish to express their adoration or offer advice to the newlyweds? Cards are nice, sure, but nothing compares to the emotions conveyed through a heartfelt speech.

Wedding Planning & Tips

Vatican Banquet Hall Predicts 2016’s Hottest Bridal Trends

Metallics, naked cakes, live bands, and flowerless centerpieces; the new year is sure to be filled with many exciting and genre-bending wedding innovations. To help all our couples stay on point for their 2016 wedding ceremonies and receptions, Vatican Banquet Hall’s insightful event planners have started making predictions about the hottest wedding trends for the coming year! Check it out!

Wedding Planning & Tips

Questions Every Couple Should Ask Their Wedding Reception DJ

Anyone that’s ever been to a boring wedding reception knows this simple truth: aside from the food and the company, the party’s DJ can make or break your guests’ experience. To ensure our clients hire the right entertainment professional for their once-in-a-lifetime event, Vatican Banquet Hall has compiled a list of important questions every couples should ask before choosing a DJ.

Vatican's Guide To Choosing a Wedding DJ

“Do You Offer A Contract?”

A written contract not only helps the DJ know what is expected of him or her, it also protects couples against last-minute cancellations and unforeseen fees. Because your wedding reception is such an important event, we recommend passing on any professional entertainer that doesn’t include a legal contract as part of their services.

“Will YOU Be DJing Our Wedding?”

Because DJs are often subcontracted through larger entertainment companies, the person you speak with on the phone or meet with when booking your entertainment may not actually be the person who shows up on the day of your wedding. Be sure you get to meet with your actual DJ before your wedding reception, and double-check that his or her name (not the name of the entertainment company) is on the contract!

“How Many Weddings Have You Done?”

Every DJ must have a “first” wedding, but that doesn’t mean it has to be yours! Before putting ink to paper, be sure the DJ you choose has a fair amount of experience, not just spinning at random events, but playing for weddings in particular. Reputable DJs should also be able to present a list of references; be leery of the professional that cannot produce one.

“Will You Also Make Announcements?”

Especially at large weddings, it often helps to have someone introduce the bridal party and make announcements regarding the evening’s events. Some DJs may include this job as part of their services, but be sure to ask for a demonstration beforehand. For DJs that don’t include emcee-ing as part of their services, venue managers may also handle the responsibility.

“How Much Control Will We Have Over The Music?”

Many couples prefer to curate their entire wedding playlist, while others tend to have “Must Play” and “Do Not Play” lists but otherwise allow the DJ to work the crowd as he or she sees fit. Before you begin shopping for an entertainment professional, determine how much control you want to have in your wedding music selection, then find a DJ who will work within your guidelines.

“What Will You Wear To Our Wedding?”

Most professional DJs own a nice suit or tuxedo, but it’s important to ask specific questions to make sure his or her attire fits with your desired aesthetic. What type of tuxedo is it? Is it overly flashy, loud, distracting, or chintzy? What will you wear when setting up and tearing down? Will guest see you in your street clothes before or after the reception? Asking these questions may help avoid conflict or embarrassment on the day of your reception.

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