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W &C W

hidbey amano eddings 2015

A supplement to the Whidbey News-Times, South Whidbey Record and The Whidbey Examiner

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January 2015


Central Whidbey fort provides charming wedding backdrop

By RON NEWBERRY Although the setting hasn’t changed much since the turn of the 20th century, the uses for grand, old Fort Casey certainly have. Not only has the land that made up the former military fortification evolved into a place for camping and outdoor recreation at what is now Fort Casey State Park and youth camps and conferences at the adjacent Camp Casey Conference Center owned by Seattle Pacific University, it’s also a place for relaxation and rest at the Fort Casey Inn. Another growing function that is taking place on the former fort grounds in Coupeville is weddings. About a dozen weddings each year are held at Fort Casey State Park, with almost all of them inside or near the picturesque

Admiralty Head Lighthouse, park manager Jon Crimmins said. Noticing a trend in larger weddings the past two years at the park, Crimmins said a new program is being implemented this year to better accommodate such events. The Fort Casey Inn, on the east end of Camp Casey and also owned and operated by Seattle Pacific University, is a relative newcomer to the wedding scene. Robyn Myers, the manager of conference services at Camp Casey, said she’s seen an increase in wedding-related events at the inn in recent years, including the ceremonies themselves. The inn is made up of 10 lodging units built in the early 1900s that were once noncommissioned officers’ quarters. CONTINUED ON PAGE 3



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Grace Bourne Miller shows off her wedding gown on the grounds of the Camp Casey Conference Center in Coupeville in May. Miller held a bridal session at the nearby Fort Casey Inn.

W &C W

hidbey amano eddings

EXEC. EDITOR & PUBLISHER | Keven R. Graves PRODUCTION | Megan Hansen

COPY & PHOTOS | Ron Newberry, Kelly Pantoleon, Michelle Beahm, Kate Daniel & Ben Watanabe MARKETING | Nora Durand, Teri Mendiola & Kimberlly Winjum CREATIVE | Rebecca Collins, Jeremiah Donier, Jen Miller & Michelle Wolfensparger


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Allison Wells and Brian Anderson celebrate their wedding held at the home of Pete and Linda Wells in Coupeville. Planned and coordinated by Whidbey Party Girls!, the wedding utilized Whidbey Island products and services including rentals by ABC Rentals by CORT and Diamond Rentals, cake by JW Desserts, flowers by Coupeville Flowers, Hair by CherWear Professional Makeup and photography by Michael Stadler of Stadler Studio Photography, Additional copies of this publication can be obtained: WHIDBEY NEWS-TIMES | 360-675-6611 SOUTH WHIDBEY RECORD | 877-316-7276 PO Box 1200, 107 S. Main Street, Suite E101 Coupeville, WA 98239

January 2015


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Fort Casey Inn has facilities for intimate wedding weekend FROM PAGE 2

For about $3,400, the entire inn, including the adjacent Garrison Hall, may be rented to host a small wedding and house the wedding party. “Fort Casey Inn is for the small, intimate wedding,” Myers said. “The majority at the inn are very family-oriented. They want to spend time with their families. They see it as an opportunity for both sides of the family to get to know each other.” The allure of weddings on the grounds of the old fort in Central Whidbey is a combination of scenic beauty, charming historic structures, affordability and its relatively convenient location near the Coupeville-to-Port Townsend ferry terminal. “It’s centrally located,” said Gloria Mickunas, owner of Coupeville-based wedding and event planning business Whidbey Party Girls! and organizer of the two-year-old Weddings on Whidbey and Events Tour. “It’s very charming. It’s also very cost effective. It’s really very affordable to do it here.” At Fort Casey State Park, a new program specialist will begin in March to assist in helping facilitate weddings and other large events at the park. Wedding events are less frequent on the scenic grounds of the Camp Casey Conference Center where alcohol is restricted, though ceremonies occasionally do take place there involving SPU alumni.

The Fort Casey Inn doesn’t carry the same restrictions and is available to the public for smaller weddings, rehearsal dinners, receptions and lodging. The difference is space and parking is more limited. “In order to do something out there, you need to be creative,” Myers said. That is something Mickunas specializes in at spots all over Whidbey Island. “I basically match clients with properties, where it’s going to best suit their needs, what they’re looking for and what is their budget,” she said. Mickunas likes to combine different venues and likes the Fort Casey Inn’s close proximity to Crockett Barn, a popular spot for large weddings. “Sometimes, I put all the housing here (at Fort Casey Inn) and then rent out Crockett Barn because Crockett Barn is literally down the road,” she said. Since 2011, Mickunas has staged about a half dozen outdoor weddings at the Fort Casey Inn in a grassy spot next to a unit known as the doctor’s house. From the porch, one can see Crockett Barn in the distance and no shortage of deer wandering by on a daily basis. Such photographic opportunities are another attraction to choosing a former military fort in the Puget Sound area as a wedding destination. “The island is beautiful,” said Erik Vail, a professional wedding photographer and owner of Oak Harbor-based Vail Studio. “The one thing about Fort Casey itself is it

Photo by Ron Newberry

Wedding planner Gloria Mickunas has planned half a dozen small weddings at the Fort Casey Inn. allows us to be in the country and in an area where there’s not a lot of crowds and not a lot of people, yet you still get a little more urban feel to it. “There’s concrete and metal, a little rougher environment. You can walk to the beach. There are fields. It’s really a great place.”

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January 2015


New venue owners hope to help build memories By KATE DANIEL For an idyllic, charming setting at which to tie the knot, couples need look no further than Dancing Fish Farms. Weddings on Whidbey and Events Tour’s newest featured venue is situated on a six-acre parcel of private land located at 1953 Newman Road, Freeland, and includes a farm house for preparations and extended stays, picturesque vineyard complete with loafing shed for outdoor receptions and gatherings and a rustic, renovated 1940s barn. Owners Nancy and Brad Thompson are friendly hosts who have taken into consideration every aesthetic and practical detail. The couple explained that they have formed an ideal eventhosting team wherein Nancy Thompson is the “people person” and Brad Thompson the craftsman. Guests may stay in the farm house, a cozy, Italian-inspired and spacious vacation home which features amenities such as a full gourmet kitchen, living areas with propane fireplaces, a large backyard deck and garden and a wine cellar. The house has room for six to eight guests to stay the night. It is included in wedding packages as it provides a space for the wedding party to change and prepare. Nancy Thompson added that they encourage groups to stay for three to four days, enjoy the island’s attractions and relax. “When you come out to the patio in the summer, all of the vines are in bloom,” said Nancy

Thompson, adding that there are 1,000 vines of white wine grape varietals on the property vineyard in addition to several white hydrangeas. “It’s beautiful.” The barn renovation was completed in the summer of 2013; most of the original wood was reused and all of its character preserved. The barn holds 100 people and includes two restrooms and heating. The north end of the property includes an apple orchard and grass area where, in the summer, the Thompsons invite the neighbor’s cows to graze. “They’re like our grand-cows,” Nancy Thompson joked. Friendly equines from the neighbor’s farm peer over the gates and are, Nancy Thompson said, eager to make friends with carrot-bearing guests. Guests are invited to utilize any of the spaces, including the barn or loafing shed. The shed was originally attached to the barn and used as a space for horses to seek shelter from the rain or heat. As the Thompsons don’t have livestock of their own, they relocated and transformed the space into a relaxation area with fire pit and custom-made tables and chairs. The shed accommodates up to 13 people, though its open-air design allows for additional outdoor picnic-style seating. “This is a place where you can have multiple events for your wedding,” Nancy Thompson said. “You have lots of places on the property to meander and have your event.” The Thompsons are in the pro-

cess of developing their wine-tasting room, which they hope will be available by summer 2015. In the same building is a spacious, fully stocked kitchen where guests or their caterers may prepare food for the reception. The farm is just down the street from Freeland’s Wetland Preserves and the Nature Sanctuary and is about a three-minute drive from the town’s shops, grocery store and restaurants. When the Thompsons purchased the property in 2012, they had the inkling that the 70-yearold barn, farmhouse and rambling fields would one day be the setting for a plethora of life’s most joyous occasions. “We looked at the property and knew what we wanted to do,” Nancy Thompson said. “We love people; we love our community.” The Thompsons added that the property has “a lot of history” and said they’ve encountered many neighbors who have shared fond memories of the place. They hope the venue will become the setting of numerous milestone events and communal gatherings, including farm-totable dinners, wine tastings and other celebrations. For each of their events, the Thompsons utilize local goods and services. Two couples have been married at Dancing Fish Farm thus far, including the Thompsons’ son and his wife. It also served as the venue for the Jan. 17 wedding of Nicholas Serrano and Jacqueline Rutherford, winners of the $16,000 Win a Whidbey Wedding contest. “It makes me feel wonderful

Photo provided

Dancing Fish Farm has hosted two weddings and played host to the Win a Whidbey Wedding contest winners Jan. 17. knowing that people will remember this for all their lives,” Nancy Thompson said. “We love it and they end up loving a piece of it, and that feels good.” “I like every speck of it. It all just

comes together and is a welcoming place,” Brad Thompson said. For more information on Dancing Fish Farm, visit www.

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Staging can help personalize your day By MICHELLE BEAHM Whidbey Island is already a beautiful setting for a wedding celebration, but there are businesses that can help expand and personalize the beauty of the celebration. Whidbey Party Girls! is a full-service event planning business for weddings and more. Owner Gloria Mickunas said that she works with clients to figure out exactly how to decorate and set up each different event to make it exactly what her clients want. “We do it all,” Mickunas said. “We will completely set, stage and direct a venue.” Mickunas said their goal is to always help the couple make the best use of their space, while also giving them the decorative touches they want. These staging services run a wide gamut of areas, from landscaping to champagne bars. If Whidbey Party Girls! doesn’t already have the perfect item in stock, Mickunas said they will search for it, and either rent or buy it for an event. “What I enjoy most about my job … is working with my clients and figuring out what are the components that they want for the event,” Mickunas said. “You’d be surprised how items get repurposed and used in nontraditional ways.” Mickunas said in the past, she and her company have worked to turn rowboats into a seafood and oyster bar, or turn a wheelbarrow into a drink station. One company she often works with for landscaping purposes, Art of Soil, even made a fire pit that that looked as if it had been lit with strategic use of colorful plants and candles. “That’s always fun,” Mickunas said, “to bring in a little whimsy. The unexpected.” Another company that occasionally works with Whidbey Party Girls! for event staging is Whidbey Party Store, owned by Robyn Kolaitis.

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Staging a wedding is all about finding what the couple wants and fitting the personality of the couple. In recent years balloons seem to be making a comeback as well as repurposing items. Specializing in balloons, Whidbey Party Store is just getting into the wedding business, and Kolaitis said it’s definitely an industry she wants to explore further in the future. “We’re still trying to find our little niche in the wedding area,” she said. Other than balloons, her store can provide serving trays, cake toppers, candles, garter belts and more. “We’d like to serve that niche of things that are hard to find on the island anyway,” Kolaitis said. One of the common uses for balloons, Kolaitis said, is using the 3-foot balloons to mark where the celebration is taking place. She said there are a lot of out-of-the-way venues, and those balloons work perfectly to mark the route.

Whidbey Party Store also does archways or entryway balloons, she said. “Wedding balloons were really popular in the ’80s,” Kolaitis said. “They’re kind of coming back now. It’s kind of been an evolving thing for us as we try to figure out what they’re looking for. “The nice thing about balloons is we can always pretty much match the bride’s colors, so it’s always a nice little accent, just to add color to the area.” Planning a wedding can be a timeconsuming endeavor, but there are many resources on Whidbey Island to help make the event as beautiful as it can be. “It’s fun. It’s an exciting celebration,” Kolaitis said. “We want to be a part of everyone’s celebration on the island.”

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January 2015

Paella provides good food along with a show By KELLY PANTOLEON When bayleaf owner Beth Kuchynka and longtime chef David Day were deciding what kind of food to offer when catering weddings, Spanish cuisine was just a natural choice. When bayleaf opened in 2000, Kuchynka said she focused on bringing the absolute best ingredients to the store, and Spanish was at the top of the list. “Paella was a very natural choice,” Kuchynka said. Now, Kuchynka and Day have been catering paella for weddings and other events for almost 10 years. Paella, which usually includes rice, seafood, other meat, vegetables and spices, is a dish that hails from Valencia, Spain. Kuchynka said some guests have told her that the paella Day cooks is the best they’ve ever had — even better than the paella they’ve had in Spain. Kuchynka said the ingredients she uses are the best quality and come from all over the world. “Our priority is getting the best quality that we can,” Kuchynka said. Because they are so focused on quality, she said, the local products they use for the paella are top of the line. Kuchynka uses ingredients from local suppliers like Prairie Bottom Farm, Willowood Farm and Penn Cove Shellfish, among others. The other ingredients, including the hand-harvested organic rice, come from Spain. Gloria Mickunas, owner of Whidbey Party Girls!, said she uses bayleaf ’s paella catering when planning weddings because it’s local and made on sight. “Everybody’s a foodie these days,” she said. People want transparency, Mickunas said. “People like watching their food being created in front of them,” she said.

Photo by Michael Stadler

Having Paella at a wedding not only feeds guests, but can also serve as entertainment. Mickunas said people care about where their food comes from; that’s why local, sustainable ingredients are so popular. In addition to bayleaf ’s paella, Mickunas also said she uses Roaming Radish, a catering company in Freeland that does a pig roast for catered events. Mickunas said she’s looking to take advantage of local food when she plans weddings for clients. “There’s a culture of us who really care about what is being produced here on Whidbey,” she said. Mickunas’ needs fit with the whole idea

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behind cooking paella for a crowd. “People get to watch from the very beginning to when it’s done,” Kuchynka said. “David (Day) will arrive to set up so people can view. It’s like a mini cooking class if you want it to be.” Some people take notes, too. Kuchynka said Day doesn’t bring any of the food already cooked. And the type of paella that they make differs every time because different people want different ingredients. “There’s something for everyone,” Kuchynka said. The bayleaf traditional paella includes chorizo (a spicy pork sausage), chicken and seasonal Penn Cove mussels (from Penn Cove Shellfish). But Kuchynka said they’ve also done vegetarian paella with Marcona almonds and Spanish stuffed olives. The natural fire heat source also influences the flavor. Day and Kuchynka bring their own charcoal and wood fire pit, she said. “It’s a much more authentic way to cook paella with such a strong heat force,” Kuchynka said. “The natural aspect of using the wood and fire is that every paella is different.” Kuchynka said everything is communal. It’s all happening in that one paella pan.

“It’s very communal,” she said. “Everyone gets served directly out of the paella pan.” From start to finish, the paella takes about two hours. Kuchynka said she’s surprised people don’t get tired of the paella show. She said one family on the south end of the island has hired Kuchynka and Day for a wedding, retirement party, baby shower and anniversary. Part of the entertainment aspect of the paella is that Day cooks with a big rowing oar. “The best way to marry the ingredients was with the oar,” Kuchynka said. Traditionally, paella is cooked with a big stick. While they’ve done events for up to 250 people, Kuchynka said most weddings they do are for people more interested in a communal and casual setting. She said the rehearsal dinners are often the most fun. Part of the appeal of doing paella was that it is entertainment, also. “It was outdoor cooking that could be shown off that people could watch and participate in,” she said. “It’s a great show for the guests. It’s a wonderful aspect of the catering.”

January 2015

Dress should reflect bride’s personality

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By MEGAN HANSEN For Colleen Thorsen, sewing has always been a family affair. Her mother taught her and her five sisters to sew. But it wasn’t until 2005 when she was asked to make bridesmaids dresses for her sister-inlaw that she decided to take her sewing to the next level. “The dresses were some serious dresses,” Thorsen said. “I thought to myself, ‘Wow, I really need to learn what I’m doing.’” So she signed up for a couture sewing program at Apparel Arts in San Francisco. The program, which Thorsen described as a bootcamp, taught her couture sewing techniques. “Couture methods don’t take all the shortcuts standard sewing does,” Thorsen said. “Seamstresses use couture techniques when building fine formal dresses to ensure proper fit and drape of the fabric.” A true couture dress cannot be altered, she said. Now Thorsen has a booming demi couture wedding dress business, French Knot Couture, which she operates out of her Clinton home. She doesn’t do much custom work these days, since she started selling her dresses online last year. For Whidbey Island brides and others willing to come to her studio, she offers muslin

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service to ensure a personalized fit. With the help of the Internet, Thorsen sold 60 dresses last year. She said each year she swaps out a couple of her styles for new offerings to keep up with trends on her website, Because she sells online, Thorsen said the demi couture style allows dresses to be partially altered since customers can’t try them on before ordering online. “Staying unique is the most important thing you can do,” she said. Current wedding dress trends are leaning toward vintage 1930s right now, she said. Brides are requesting sleeves, lace and fur, which “is definitely coming back.” Brides also seem to be leaning toward alternative wedding dresses, looking for shorter, versatile offerings. One line of dresses Thorsen

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January 2015


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John Auburn scoops the buttercream without a measuring cup. A couple of decades in the wedding cake business renders measurements a formality more than a necessity at this point in his long career. In his Clinton-based bakery, the owner of JW Desserts has music playing softly from a nearby speaker as he moves deftly around his kitchen. And it is his kitchen, with everything in its proper place as he needs it. During the wedding season, his kitchen is a flurry of mixing, whisking, spreading, rolling, folding and decorating. Between July and September, he works six days a week and will bake hundreds of nuptial confections. Recently, with business a tad slower around the holidays, he had time to show off his process while baking a demonstration two-tier wedding cake from scratch and completely from his own imagination. “I don’t really get a vacation,” he said. “I don’t really trust any one. These are my own recipes and I don’t want those out.” Over his long career, Auburn has baked for the rich and famous. Who, exactly, he could not say, but given the elaborate nature of some of his cakes for regular and repeat customers, such as a Whidbey Islandshaped cake for the Whidbey Camano Land Trust, it’s no surprise he’s drawn plenty of attention. Elizabeth Guss, director of development for the Land Trust, has been a frequent customer of Auburn’s over the past five years. It started with the islandshaped cake, complete with topography, for the trust’s 25th anniversary and has included a train engine cake for her husband and a cake in the shape of a bouquet of flowers, plus his cheesecakes and other simpler

treats available at a couple of Whidbey stores. “Whenever I need a really special cake, he’s who I see,” Guss said. He’s been on two different cooking competitions on TV, first in 2008 and then in 2010. The notoriety that followed was good for business, though he’s happy to be away from the cameras these days and focus on expanding his business and treating each customer well. “I know people who have a signature flavor or people who are really good at scrollwork,” Auburn said. “I’m into architecture. “I’m my worst critic,” he added. “I beat myself up.” Like many pastry chefs and cake bakers, Auburn isn’t a huge fan of sweets, citing the unhealthy nature of eating his own treats regularly. “Health-wise, it would not be great,” he said. Rejecting a common criticism of wedding cakes looking incredible but tasting ho-hum, Auburn said his cakes’ attractiveness matches their deliciousness. Relying on time-tested recipes for lemon cake, lemon curd and lemon mousse or coffeespice chocolate ganache with espresso bean mousse and caramelized mocha butter cream, Auburn described his cakes as being balanced in their sweetness. “It’s a bunch of different flavors and textures,” he said. “I really want the experience of eating a wedding cake to be a culinary experience,” he added. The sales pitch, if it can even be called that, is as low key as they come. Auburn meets with clients interested in his wedding cakes for no charge. “Why would I charge for their business?” he asked. If they come to his kitchen, he has several available to taste. He’s willing to travel, but only brings one sample. Part of the deal when he bakes a wedding cake is a one-

Photos by Ben Watanabe

John Auburn of JW Desserts decorates a wedding cake in his Clinton bakery. Cakes often play a role in wedding celebrations. year anniversary six-inch cake, essentially the top tier, if the couple remembers to come in and ask for it. Understanding the tradition to eat the top tier, long frozen, for the first anniversary, Auburn said he’s happy to supplant the old cake with a new one for the newlyweds. People bring pictures of other cakes to give him direction, or incorporate the wedding’s colors into the decorations. He’s about as malleable as the molding chocolate he uses to make roses and leaves adorning several of the wedding cakes he’s made over 25 years. As the lone operator of the

bakery and the owner, and a bit of a perfectionist, Auburn delivers wedding cakes himself. “I like to be the guy and make sure it’s set up right,” he said. Guss, who had yet to order a wedding cake but recommends JW Desserts whenever she can, said the design and style of his specialty cakes make for a conversation piece and a fond memory. “He makes the cake have a role in the celebration, which is what I think a lot of people are looking for … that years later people are still talking about it,” she said. “Years later, I’m still talking about them.”

January 2015

Wedding Planner J

ust engaged? Wondering about all the things you’ll need to do and when? Here’s a month-by-month snapshot of all your wedding to-dos. 12+ MONTHS BEFORE  Envision your wedding and draw up a budget.  Assemble your “planning team.” Consider hiring a wedding consultant.  Pick a wedding date and time. Select several options, then check with your venues, officiant, important guests before finalizing.  Start planning the guest list.  Look for and book ceremony and reception sites.  Ask friends and relatives to be in the wedding party.  Optional: Have an engagement party. You may want to register beforehand for gifts. 8-10 MONTHS BEFORE  Bride: Think about, shop for, and order your gown.  Envision reception food.  Decide what type of entertainment you want. A pianist for the cocktail hour, strolling violinists, a DJ, or band?  Think about your floral decor.  Research and book your wedding professionals. Interview vendors: photographer, videographer, reception band or DJ, florist.  Research a wedding insurance policy to protect your deposits.  Research and reserve accommodations for out-of-town guests.  Register for gifts.  Contact rental companies if you need to rent anything for ceremony/ reception, such as chairs, tables, and tent.


 Book ceremony musicians.  Order bridesmaid dresses.  Start planning honeymoon.  Send save-the-date cards. This

is a particularly good idea if you’re marrying during a tourist or holiday season or having a destination wedding. 4-6 MONTHS BEFORE  Attend pre-wedding counseling, if required.  Shop for and order invitations and wedding rings.  Shop for formalwear.  Renew or get passports, if necessary.  Envision your wedding cake and research, interview, and book a cake designer. 3 MONTHS BEFORE  Order wedding cake.  Hire a calligrapher, if you want your invitations professionally addressed.  Attend your shower. (It may be earlier, depending on when hosts decide to have it.)  Groom: Rent the men’s formalwear.  Hire wedding-day transport: limousines, other cars. Look into transportation sooner if you’re considering renting streetcars or over-the-top travel. 2 MONTHS BEFORE  Mail your invitations.  Write your vows.  Purchase gifts for parents, attendants, and each other.  Book your stylist and try out bigday hairstyles.  Book makeup artist for a trial run. 1 MONTH BEFORE  Apply for a marriage license.


Check with the local bureau in the town where you’ll wed.  Bride: Have final gown fitting. Bring your maid of honor along to learn how to bustle your dress. Have the dress pressed and bring it home.  Call all bridesmaids. Make sure they have their gowns ready for the wedding.  Make last-minute adjustments with vendors.  Create a wedding program to hand out to guests.  Order and plan in-room welcome baskets for out-of-town guests. 2 WEEKS BEFORE  Review final RSVP list and call any guests who have not yet sent a response.  Deliver must-have shot lists to photographer and videographer. Include who should be in formal portraits and determine when portraits will be taken.  Deliver final song list to your DJ or bandleader. Include special song requests and songs you don’t want played.  Bride: Get your last prewedding haircut and color. 1 WEEK BEFORE  Give reception site/caterer final guest head count. Include vendors, such as the photographer or band members, who will expect a meal. Ask how many extra plates the caterer will prepare.  Supply location manager with a list of vendor requests such as a table for DJ or setup spaceneeded by florist.  Plan reception seating chart.  Print place and table cards, or finalize list with the calligrapher you have hired to do so.  Call all wedding vendors and confirm arrangements.  Give ceremony and reception site managers a schedule of vendor delivery and setup times, plus contact numbers.

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 Groom: Get your hair trimmed.  Attend bachelor/ette parties.

 Attend rehearsal dinner.  Present attendants with gifts at

2-3 DAYS BEFORE  Bride: If you need to, have your gown pressed or steamed.  Groom: Go for final fitting and pick up your formalwear.  Groom: Ask the best man to make sure all groomsmen attend fittings and pick up their outfits.  Determine wedding-party positions during ceremony and the order of the party in the processional and recessional.  Hand off place cards, table cards, menus, disposable cameras, favors, and any other items for setting the tables to the caterer and/or reception site manager.  Reconfirm final details with all vendors. Discuss any necessary lastminute substitutions.  Call the limousine- or car-rental company for pickup times and locations.  Arrange for guests without cars to be picked up from the airport or train station. Ask friends, attendants, or relatives to help.  Deliver welcome baskets to the hotel concierge; make sure to include names and delivery instructions. DAY BEFORE  Provide all wedding professionals with an emergency phone number to call on the day of the wedding.  Write checks and/or talk to wedding hosts (usually your parents, if not you) about any final balances to be paid at the end of the reception. NIGHT BEFORE  Rehearse ceremony. Meet with wedding party, ceremony readers, immediate family, and your officiant at the ceremony site to rehearse and iron out details.  Bring all special ceremony accessories to the site.  Give your marriage license to your officiant.

Reception: 48%-50% Ceremony: 2%-3% Attire: 8%-10% Flowers: 8%-10% Entertainment/Music: 8%-10% Photography/Videography: 10%-12% Stationery: 2%-3% Wedding Rings: 2%-3% Parking/Transportation: 2%-3% Gifts: 2%-3% Miscellaneous: 8%

the rehearsal dinner. You’ll want to do this especially if the gifts are accessories to be worn during the wedding. DAY OF  Present parents and each other with gifts.  Give wedding bands to the best man and the maid of honor to hold during the ceremony.  Give best man the officiant’s fee envelope, to be handed off after the ceremony.  Introduce your reception site manager to your consultant or maid of honor for questions or problems during the reception.  Assign a family member or attendant to be the photographer’s contact so he knows who is who. POSTWEDDING  Prearrange for someone to return any rentals.  Preplan for attendants to take the bride’s gown for cleaning and return the groom’s tux to the rental shop.  Write and send thank-you notes to gift-bearing guests and vendors who were especially helpful. JUST HOW MUCH WILL THIS DAY COST? When it comes to financing a wedding, you should figure out how much you’ll need to spend to get what you want. Here is a basic breakdown of what you can expect to pay:

Page 10

January 2015


Whidbey Island Destination Weddings

Directory 2015


Best Western Plus Harbor Plaza and Conference Center 33175 State Route 20, Oak Harbor 360-679-4567 Crockett Farm Bed & Breakfast 1056 Crockett Farm Road, Coupeville 360-678-2036 Dancing Fish Farm 1953 Newman Road, Freeland 425-802-7730

Fort Casey Inn 360-678-5050, Marty’s Place at Strawbridge Farm 877-814-0503 Whidbey Beachfront House and Cabins Whidbey’s Finest Luxury Beach Compound 206-937-0147 Nancy


Private Charter Boat Custom Leisure Crusing 360-632-3636, 360-341-2824


Langley Salon & Spa 120 A Second Street, Langley 360-221-8090,


January 2015


bayleaf 101 NW Coveland Street, Coupeville 360-678-6603 Fireseed Catering 6051 Coles Road, Langley 360-321-4748 Front Street Grill 20 Front Street NW, Coupeville 360-682-2551 Midnight Kitchen 360-321-2796 Roaming Radish 5023 Harbor Hills Dr., Freeland 360-331-5939


The Oystercatcher Engagement Parties 901 Grace Street, Coupeville 360-678-0683

Flowers By Shamay 360-941-1369 The Greenhouse Florist & Nursery 555 NE 7th Ave, Oak Harbor 360-675-3556 Midway Florist 91 NE Midway Blvd, Oak Harbor 360-679-2525, 888-394-2525 Vases Wild Tobey Nelson Langley 360-221-1013


Honeymoon Bay Coffee 1100 SW Bowmer Street, Oak Harbor 360-682-6654 Lavender Wind Wedding Toss Plus More! 15 Coveland Street, Coupeville 360-544-4132

Disc Jockeys

Linds Jewelry 1609 Main Street, Freeland 360-221-6111

Event & Stage Design

PlumaPaper 388 NW 11th Court, Oak Harbor 843-489-9896

Let’s Dance DJs Mark Pendergrast, DJ & Owner 206-852-9995

Whidbey Party Girls! 360- 969-0337


Cultus Bay Nursery 7568 Cultus Bay Road, Clinton 360-579-2329

Page 11


Invitations Officiants

Rev. Dave Bieniek Weddings, Funerals, and Other Sacred 512-796-3283

Party Supplies Whidbey Party Store 270 SE Cabot Drive, Oak Harbor 360-544-3068


Stadler Studio Photography Michael Stadler, Photographer 222 Anthes Avenue, Langley 360-221-6030 Shonda Hilton Photography Glamour Shots 6300 Storkson Drive, Clinton 425-314-6151


Diamond Party Rentals 33650 State Route 20, Oak Harbor 360-679-6626


Whidbey Sea-Tac Shuttle & Charter 1751 NE Goldie St, Oak Harbor 360-679-4003


Best Western Plus Harbor Plaza and Conference Center 33175 State Route 20, Oak Harbor 360-679-4567 Crockett Farm 1056 Crockett Farm Road, Coupeville 360-678-2036

Dancing Fish Farm 1953 Newman Road, Freeland 425-802-7730 Greenbank Farm 765 Wonn Road A201, Greenbank 360-678-7700 Langley Chamber of Commerce 208 Anthes Avenue, Langley 360-221-6765 Meerkerk Gardens 3531 Meerkerk Lane, Greenbank 360-678-1912 Odd Fellow Park 96 S Camano Ridge Road, Camano Island 360-387-4737, 360-244-5390 Useless Bay Golf & Country Club 5725 S. Country Club Drive, Langley 360-321-5960

Wedding Tours

Skagit Wedding Show February 22, 2015 - 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Swinomish Casino & Lodge 12885 Casino Drive, Anacortes 360-428-5972

Wine & Wineries bayleaf 101 NW Coveland Street, Coupeville 360-678-6603 Blooms Winery 5603 Bayview Road, Langley 360-321-0515

Custom Designed

Wedding Rings Wedding rings created on Whidbey Island by Linds goldsmiths Patrick Koughan and Carrie Saunders

Wedding Party Gifts Come in to Linds today to shop from an impressive collection of Wedding Party Gifts Matched Pearl Earrings and Bracelets, Custom made Jewelry items, Pandora Jewelry, Brighton Jewelry. Gifts from lines such as Waterford, Glass Eye, Rembrandt Charms, Vera Bradley, Tickled Pink Scarves, BOMA Sterling, and many, many more.

Make your dreams come true‌

Register your favorite items on LINDS Gift Registry

1609 E. Main Street, Freeland | | (360) 221-6111

Profile for Sound Publishing

Weddings - Whidbey and Camano Weddings 2015  


Weddings - Whidbey and Camano Weddings 2015