Event planning: Where creativity, ingenuity and hard work meet

April 30, 2013
Erik Kent of NJWedding.com - New Jersey's Wedding Planning Resource

Erik Kent, Co-Publisher of NJWedding.com (Photo by Bryan Madrid Photography)

Erik and Beth Kent were practically newlyweds when on Valentine’s Day, 1997, they launched www.njwedding.com, one of the longest-running wedding planning sites in New Jersey.

Married at Rutgers University’s Kirkpatrick Chapel in 1994, they planned their entire wedding the old-fashioned way: thumbing through the Yellow Pages, asking lots of questions and writing lots of lists. The next year, while visiting friends at MIT and watching as they researched things on the Internet, the Kents had an “a-ha!” moment.

It was a like a light bulb went on: “We realized that pretty soon, when the Internet was more public, people would be using it to search for local services and products,” Mr. Kent says.

And so was born the idea for one centralized resource. At njwedding.com, brides and grooms search for bakeries and bridal gowns, bands and florists, photographers and videographers, ministers and civil officiates, multi-cultural wedding planners, reception halls and destinations, and much more.

To say the site has come a long way from its early days is like saying everyone focuses on the bride on the big day: an understatement of epic proportions.

“We wrote to about 50 people we knew connected to the wedding business – most were people we’d worked with for our own wedding – and explained what we were doing, and the only person who saw the potential was the minister who married us,” Mr. Kent says. “He became our first advertiser.”

PM Fine Living Magazine (May 2013 issue), featuring "Celebrations" like Weddings, Bar / Bat Mitzvahs, Catering and more...

PM Fine Living Magazine (May 2013 issue), featuring “Celebrations” like Weddings, Bar / Bat Mitzvahs, Catering and more…

The first site was HTML – “just links on a page,” as Mr. Kent says – with new information uploaded as it became available. When the Kents found someone who could do computer programming, they automated their systems.

Today, the site gets about 500,000 hits per month, compared to about 25,000 per month in the early years.

There might be larger companies in the region, but none are as thorough, or as focused on relationship building, Mr. Kent says.

“Anyone can easily create a site that can be shared online,” Mr. Kent says. “We’ve made connections, built relationships. That’s what we’ve done so well over the years. We have a presence in major search engines, at bridal shows throughout the Garden State, in local newspapers and magazines, and in local wedding groups and associations.”

Mr. Kent, who lives and works in Montgomery Township with his wife, enjoys meeting with brides and grooms at bridal shows to get “an understanding of what they’re looking for when it comes to their wedding plans.” And, as a spokesman for his company, he can also steer couples toward particular members and services.

Some trends Mr. Kent has noticed: a shift away from clubs and toward “fun” outings – golf, cooking classes, hot air balloon rides – for bachelor and bachelorette parties, uplighting at wedding receptions, dancing “in the clouds” a DJ puts on the floor, photo booths, and honey jars created by local beekeepers.

It’s been a nice way to make a living, Mr. Kent said, as it’s given both him and his wife the opportunity to work from home and watch over their three children, ages 13, 10 and 8.

(Reposted from the May 2013 edition of PM Fine Living Magazine / Packet Publications (see Pages 8 & 9 where NJWedding.com was featured along with Mary Harris of Mary Harris Events). Photo of Erik Kent by Bryan Madrid Photography)


NJ Event Planner & Invitation Designer Collaborate to Introduce Video Invite for Weddings & Events

April 27, 2013
Introducing The VIDEO Invite!

Jewel Georgieff and Yvette Sencion launch their design for video invitations at The Wedding Salon luxury bridal event in NYC

New York, NY — On a warm afternoon in the summer of 2012, after searching for ideas to create a signature collection that would offer her brides more unique and personalized options, Jewel Georgieff of Jewel Georgieff Wedding Design (a division of Jewel Party Solutions LLC) found what she had been searching for and immediately contacted her friend and colleague, Luxury Paperie Artisan, Invitation Designer and owner of Sdezigns LLC, Yvette Sencion.

“I loved Yvette`s work, she is simply hands down the best around, I would recommend her to everyone, I just knew anything she came up with would be fabulous and was just dying to collaborate with a professional like her,” says Jewel of her collaboration with the designer.

Fast forward after many chats with a supplier, design meetings and fun shopping excursions (sometimes with kids in tow), Yvette and Jewel debuted the now exclusive signature collection called “The Georgieff,” featuring luxury white silk embroidered wish box with a digital slide show, coordinating menu cards, circular boxed invitations and the star of the collection: THE LUXURY VIDEO INVITATION!

That’s right you heard it, a mailable invitation with a mini LCD screen that is lightweight and customizable so couples and party hosts can upload a video message inviting their guest to their celebration, wedding or corporate event!

Yvette can custom design the invitation overlay to suit any color scheme, theme and style of any event or wedding. The line debuted at the ‘Wedding Salon Luxury Bridal Showcase’ on Monday, April 22, 2013 at the Metropolitan Pavilion in NYC to fantastic reactions from brides-to-be and other attendees! Grooms especially loved the little LCDs!

The Invitations were displayed in elegant luxury boxes amongst Yvette Sencion`s exclusive designs and a tribute to earth day table-scape designed by Jewel Georgieff.

Contrary to what some may believe, the event industry is not a cut throat grouping of competing vendors and professionals. Event professionals come together every day to create the dreams of their clients, and in this instance they come together to bring new designs and introduce new ideas and products to a new market.

Thanks to this collaborative effort, Jewel Georgieff, the only local Event designers to have her own signature collection design by Yvette Sencion of Sdezigns, and Yvette is the only local Invitation Designer in the region with the Video Invitation available for custom orders.

Orders for the “Georgieff Collection” and custom Luxury Video Invitations (#videoinvitation) can be placed only through Yvette directly at Sdezigns, LLC or Jewel Georgieff Wedding Design.

For more information on video invitations or “the Georgieff Collection” contact Yvette Sencion, Founder and Luxury Invitation Designer, via email at info@sdezigns.com, call 908-764-4407 or visit corporate website www.sdezigns.com. To speak with The Event Designer, Jewel Georgieff, please contact via email @ info@jewelgeorgieff.com, call 201-577-1750 or visit corporate website www.jewelgeorgieff.com

Closeup of the video invitation available for weddings and events

Closeup of the video invitation available for weddings and events

PHOTOGRAPHY CREDITS STEVEN B PHOTOS: 917-727-5614


5th Annual Wedding Road Show draws brides nationwide to LBI with plans for an event of a lifetime

April 22, 2013

Record breaking attendance Wedding Road Show introduces future brides and visitors to Long Beach Island and surrounding areas to look and book with Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce members

Wedding Road Show on LBI

Lori Pepenella, Destination Marketing Director of the Southern Ocean County Chamber with Ashley Taluba and Pete Gallagher, winners of NJWedding.com’s VIP Contest at the Wedding Road Show on LBI 2013

April 22, 2013, LONG BEACH ISLAND, NJ – Overnight stays, wedding banquets, after parties and all the services needed to help a happy couple obtain wedded bliss were presented during a progressive self guided tour of the wedding venues of the Long Beach Island Region. For its fifth year, the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce along with its tourism branch the LBI Region Destination Marketing Organization collaborated with Wedding Industry leaders and almost 60 of their members to create a progressive party atmosphere that sells the region year round as a wedding destination. Entertainment, passed hors d’oeuvres, photography, video, concierge services, floral and table displays, invitations, ceremony ideas, cake sampling, accommodations, even Stand Up Paddle Board lessons for bridal parties were all options to soak in as wedding plans turned into reality from 9:30am to 4pm on a sunny Sunday.

With brides traveling distances as far as Burien in Washington State, Norfolk Virginia, Wilmington Delaware, White Plains, NY, and across Pennsylvania including Philadelphia and Yardley. New Jersey brides were also well represented coming from Princeton, Hoboken and Highland Lakes, as well as from local areas throughout the LBI region. The participating businesses played party host while booking dates, services and introducing new customers to all the area has to offer. The event was captured by E Video Productions, who for the past four years has been making a documentary video to focus not only on the location, but to showcase the wedding professionals and future LBI brides and grooms. This year, over 150 registered brides and their entourages consisting of brides, grooms, wedding parties and family members filtered through the show directly to members who were displaying throughout 11 locations.

“This event generates revenue, contracts are signed and deposits are made not only the day of the Wedding Road Show, but throughout the following year for our local businesses,” states Lori Pepenella, Destination Marketing Director of the Southern Ocean County Chamber. “This allows brides and their families to explore our area and see first hand the possibilities of a one of a kind wedding, vacation or even a weekend getaway.” The Southern Ocean County Chamber LBI Region Wedding Road Show is sponsored by Demetrios Bridal, Dante Zeller at Uniformity, New Jersey Bride, The Knot, NJWedding.com, Celebrations Magazine, Jersey Shore Wedding Association, Magic 100.1FM, For The Bride Magazine, Ocean Tent, Trolley Tours and the NJ Division of Travel and Tourism.

Ashley Taluba from Roselle Park and her finance Peter Gallagher from Millville were the winners of NJWedding.com’s VIP Contest Experience, and received prizes donated by The Gables Historic Inn & Restaurant, Camllle’s Floral Design, A Sweet Memory and A Shining Star Limousine Service.

For more information about the Long Beach Island region, visit the Southern Ocean County Visitor Center at 265 West Ninth Street in Ship Bottom, NJ, online at www.visitLBIregion.com or call (609) 494 7211. Also follow updates on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest and follow the social media hashtag #LBIRegion.


5th Annual VIP Contest Winners Put LBI In Center Of Wedding Plans

April 15, 2013

NJWedding.com and the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce announce winner of Wedding Road Show on Long Beach Island 2013 VIP Contest!

NJWedding.com VIP Contest Winners, Ashley Taluba and Pete Gallagher

NJWedding.com’s Wedding Road Show VIP Contest Winners, Ashley Taluba and Pete Gallagher

Long Beach Island, NJ – After receiving almost 1,000 entries since November 1, 2012 for the VIP Contest, a winning couple was chosen on Friday, April 12th, announced Erik Kent, Co-Publisher of NJWedding.com . Ashley Taluba of Roselle Park, NJ and Pete Gallagher of Millville, NJ were chosen randomly out of the entries of engaged couples and awarded with the “VIP Experience” during the upcoming Wedding Road Show on Long Beach Island 2013 event.

Ashley and Pete will receive an overnight stay in the “Honeymoon Suite” at The Gables Historic Inn & Restaurant in Beach Haven, NJ on Saturday, April 20th, including breakfast on Sunday morning. Then they will go to the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce office in Ship Bottom to register for the Wedding Road Show, where they will receive a custom welcome gift basket by Camille’s Floral Design and an LBI-themed cookie bucket from A Sweet Memory. They will then enter their white stretch limousine, courtesy of A Shining Star Limousine Service, where they will tour the LBI region’s venues and view exhibits by wedding professionals featuring a variety of services and products.

When asked why Long Beach Island was a consideration for her wedding plans, Ashley replied that she’s an “LBI beach girl” and has spent time on the island, taking day trips to Loveladies and Beach Haven over the years. Also, with her being from Northern NJ and Pete being from Southern NJ, Long Beach Island provides a centralized location for them, their friends and family. She considers LBI to have a different feel than other New Jersey beaches, and enjoys taking relaxing drives throughout the island. Her ideal wedding would be on the beach, where she and Pete could take memorable pictures. She and Pete met and began dating while attending Stockton College and were engaged in June 2012. They have a tentative wedding date of Spring 2015.

After attending several bridal shows around New Jersey to get ideas and costs for various wedding services, Ashley and Pete are looking forward to attending the Wedding Road Show to further explore the Long Beach Island region!

The Wedding Road Show on LBI is taking place Sunday, April 21st from 10am – 4pm. For more information go to http://www.visitLBIregion.com or call the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce at (609) 494-7211. The event is sponsored by the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce and the New Jersey Division of Travel and Tourism.


New Jersey Disc Jockey Network (NJDJN) Holds DJ Expo on April 9th

April 8, 2013
NJDJN

Don’t miss the NJDJN Expo on Tuesday, April 9th in Edison, NJ!

On Tuesday April 9, 2013, the New Jersey Disc Jockey Network (NJDJN) will hold its annual DJ Expo at the conveniently-located Crowne Plaza in Edison, NJ from 7 PM – 11 PM. This annual event includes an exhibit floor, live entertainment, networking opportunities with top industry professionals and a keynote presentation by Jack Bermeo and Jorge Vincentty from LJ Productions, titled “The Art of Latin Events.”

Jack Bermeo has won the honor of “DJ of the Year” in each of the past two years at the International DJ Expo held in Atlantic City. In the presentation, Jack will provide very specific performance techniques that you can use to take your shows to the next level!

Sponsored by N.A.M.E. and Sherman Party, other confirmed exhibitors at the Expo include Mobile Beat Magazine, Sonic Fiber, Screaming Lunatic Design, NJWedding.com, DJ Creme, BrideLive, Prime Cuts Music, Elegant Bridal Productions, Total Party, Goodwin’s Goodtime Photo Booths and more!

DJs and event professionals located in the Northeast – you don’t want to miss this information-filled show! Admission is just $5 (payable at the door) and all attendees are eligible to win an exciting array of door prizes.

For more information about the Expo and the NJDJN, you can view the event on facebook or visit www.njdjn.org


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