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WPIC Certification Course at (AHTA) The Antigua Hotel & Tourism Association


For Immediate Release


Tracey Manailescu

WPIC Inc. (The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada Inc.)


One More Reason to Marry in Antigua

Many couples are lured to Antigua for a destination wedding due to the island’s 365 enchanting coves and beaches. Couples now have another incentive to exchange vows on the island as 14 hotel professionals will become certified Wedding Coordinators.

The Antigua Hotel & Tourism Association (“AHTA”) recently partnered with The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada (“WPIC”) to offer a wedding certification class to its members.

Of the participating hotels included staff from Curtain Bluff, Galley Bay, Blue Waters and Catamaran Hotel. WPIC’s Caribbean instructor, Sue Morris, facilitated the two-day course, at the AHTA training room where participants went through instruction on the nuances of wedding planning, inclusive of tests, group work. They are required to complete a final exam that will be proctored online before they can officially use their designation “WPICC”. On successful completion, they will join a network of over 4900 hospitality and event professionals mainly from Canada, but also including other warm weather destinations such as Bahamas, Barbados, Mexico and Jamaica. The WPIC Alumni is an active membership that allows members to exchange industry information, contacts as well as cross promote their venues and territories.

Admin Manager of the AHTA, Anthea Watkins, confirmed that the training was long overdue and that it was offered in response to the request of the AHTA membership. The next class in Antigua is expected to take place in 2015, but interested persons can attend any classes scheduled in the Caribbean at the AHTA discounted rate. Information on classes are listed on the WPIC website –

About WPIC

The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada (“WPIC”) is the only in-class Wedding Coordinator’s Certification Institute in Canada. The course consists of group work, in-class lectures and Industry-related guest speakers followed by 2 weeks of home-study. Students are graded based on their in-class work, success on 3 tests and a final exam.

WPIC alumni have opened their own full and part-time businesses, or found employment with Catering Companies, Resorts, Golf and Country Clubs and Bridal salons

Alumni Association

On successful completion of the course students have access to conferences, continued learning and networking through their lifetime membership to the Alumni Association of more than 4900 Certified Wedding Coordinators.



WPIC International Certification Course in Antigua 2014

WPIC certification course on July 8th & 9th, 2014

Wedding professionals of Antigua and Barbuda:

WPIC is working with the Antigua Hotel & Tourist Association (AHTA) in July to bring you the WPIC certification course on July 8th & 9th, 2014.

Register at:



Sue Morris: WPIC “Planner of the Month” June 2014

By: Tracey Manailescu

Today we have a Planner of the Month who is very special to us at WPIC. She has a heart of gold, and is unbelievably kind. Don’t let that fool you though, she is also incredibly business savvy and an ultimate professional. She gives her all to the events & wedding industry. Some things that really stand out to us is her attention to detail, and the way she listens. She offers great advice and will kick your butt when you need it most. She is one of our amazing instructors, Sue Morris of Soulmates Barbados & Essemm Events.

Sue Morris, WPICC Photo: Daylight Photography – Narada Thorington

barbados- sue

Photo: Compliments the Nation Publishing Company Ltd.

Photo: Compliments the Nation Publishing Company Ltd.

Favourite weddings?
Harold & Noreen Hoyt – 2004 – It was Harold’s 3rd marriage and Noreen’s first. He was the Editor of the largest newspaper in Barbados and my first “celebrity” wedding. 400 guests and while it was a great success, I was so inexperienced. NB they just celebrated their 10th anniversary.

Jasmine & Chris – 2007 – I could write a book from this wedding alone, but the highlight was getting a call from the father of the groom who insisted that I move the wedding (over 300 guests) from Lion Castle Polo estate to another venue because a tropical storm was heading to Barbados. This was about 72 hours BEFORE the wedding.

Karen & Femi – 2012 – My last wedding that I planned (I have since changed my business model so that I am handling sales and business development and not the coordination) Beautiful wedding with cultural tapestry from West Africa, Scotland, Barbados, England… Pouring rain, stately plantation house, jazz band, touching speeches… My wedding coordination swan song ;-)

Photo: Magical Moments – Steve Cumberbatch

Photo: Magical Moments – Steve Cumberbatch

Most challenging aspect of starting your business?
Trying to figure out how to make a sustainable living from just weddings (haven’t found the answer for that yet but working on it!)

When was your moment when you truly felt you made your company successful?
I have had some milestones of success with my corporate business, Essemm Events, but I still feel I have a ways to go for getting Soulmates Barbados to the point of calling it a success.

How many staff do you currently have?
2 full-time office/accounts; 3 contracted independent planners (2 are WPIC certified!); about 15 casual staff who I use for both the wedding and corporate events

Best moments/memories from one or more wedding(s)?
Too many, but currently it is receiving glowing tributes about my team and the positive service experience they have. It is very fulfilling watching your team grow.

Please tell us some things you have learned over the years that have helped you grow?
Develop and invest in your team. You are only as good as your last event. I really believe in niche marketing and Not trying to be all things to all people. I think focusing on a demographic that mirrors my personality helps me to attract those types of clients to the business.

Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
Teaching lots of WPIC classes. Remarried (LOL). Still actively working in the events industry, but hopefully in areas that I could never even predict at this moment!

Keeping Afloat in the Wedding Industry (When You Feel Like You Are Drowning)

By: Tracey Manailescu


It is hard to stand out  in the wedding industry whether you are a wedding planner, photographer, designer, cake decorator, venue, wedding salon, tuxedo store, makeup artist, DJ, band, etc.

The same can be argued for any industry though. Just think about real estate agents, stock brokers, lawyers, models, doctors, police, nurses, actors, etc.

No matter what field you are in, there is competition and always someone who knows more, has more experience, and has more talent. Stop worrying about what your competitors are doing all of the time, and do what feels right for you.

Networking, attending conferences, attending open houses to see what new products or services vendors have to offer, spending money on targeted ads (print or online), a professionally made website, upgraded business cards, a booth at a wedding show, sponsoring your services, better SEO presence, etc. can all help get you on the right track.  When you invest in yourself and your company, you can’t help but grow as a person, and as a business owner.

However, if you did all of the above you would run out of time, funds and your sanity very quickly. You just can’t do it all!

What to do?

  • Pick a few things that resonate with you. It needs to be things that are key to making you feel better about yourself, your image, your passion and what your message to the wedding world is clearly all about.
  • Be open to change.
  • Update and upgrade your skills.
  • Be clear and concise with your branding.
  • Target the market that you fit into.
  • Stop feeling guilty.
  • Keep educated and informed.
  • Spend your money wisely.
  • Keep track of your expenses.
  • Attend industry events & conferences that actually relate to what you are in need of learning or reaffirming.
  • Take a step back, and take a deep look into your business from an outside perspective.
  • Survey your couples, industry friends, WPIC alumni, and family. Ask for feedback about what you could have done better, find out what they think that you did (or do well) and make the appropriate changes where you see fit.
  • Keep your personal life and home happy. Stay healthy, join a gym, get walking, eat better. Go shopping for new clothes or shoes, get a new and fresh haircut, play with your kids, go on a weekly or monthly date night with your better half. Learn to do something you have always wanted to do like painting, cooking classes, learn a language, go dancing, etc.  Strive to be happier, and you will be!

On a personal business note:

We, at WPIC have really looked into what our graduates and industry friends are asking for, based on feedback from surveys, and conversations. We  looked long and hard at where our money goes, and where we advertise this year. We have had to say no to some amazing opportunities and experiences, because it just doesn’t fit into our vision. We looked at our Google analytics, read our class surveys,  and made an informed decision about letting some of our staff and ads go that are no longer working for us. Yes, it has left some hard feelings, but in the end, this is what is best for us, and WPIC at this time.

We feel good about our decisions and look forward to seeing some of our ideas take shape and grow.

Enough of the “Charge What You’re Worth” Campaign

Photo by

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

Every conference I go to, every article I read, someone is saying, “Charge what you are worth!”  I hate to break it to you, they are just telling you what you want to hear and hoping to sell you on whatever they are pitching ( just look at their own pricing).

Your pricing needs to reflect your education, experience, level of expertise and drum roll… your market. It’s all well and good for someone to tell you to charge more money for your services, but if clients are not willing to pay that price, you are going to have to close your business pretty fast.

I have been a professional, certified wedding planner for almost 15 years, I train other wedding planners, both independent and at resorts. I am constantly learning and attend at least 10 conferences a year, I speak at half of those conferences and I have been quoted in magazines, newspapers, the radio and on television around the world. All a potential client has to do is Google my name, but when it comes time to pay for all that experience, the client couldn’t care less. I may think I’m worth my weight in diamonds, but “charging what I’m worth” just isn’t going to fly.

Even the most famous wedding planners can not charge what they are worth. Think about it, they have alternate means of making money, through endorsing product lines, partnering with resorts, paid speaking engagements, hosting television shows, etc.  If they can’t charge clients more than what the market allows, how can you?

How should you determine your pricing? Take a look at your finances; how much do you need to make in order to live comfortably, attend a couple conferences to stay educated, pay for marketing and all the overhead of running a business in a year? Once you know how much money you need to make, look at how many clients you can comfortably work with in a year. Investigate what the average rate planners of your calibre charge. That will give you a good idea of how much you need to charge and what your market will support.  By all means, go a little above the market average, but as wedding planners we know we are worth our weight in gold, unfortunately, you won’t be paid that way.

Web Etiquette for Wedding Planners

Krista of KJ and coBy: Krista Olynyk, owner of KJ and Co.

Trusted by wedding professionals and couples for one-of-a-kind weddings!  As seen on Style Me Pretty, Wedding Obsession, Today’s Bride and more.  Winner of a Wedding Wire Couples’ Choice Award.

We learn about wedding etiquette in our WPIC course and we’re constantly advising clients about protocol and convention, but what about etiquette when it comes to doing business as wedding planners, particularly on the web?

Since so many planners are new to running a website, blog or various social media accounts in general – let alone from a business-owner’s perspective – I thought I would share a few important points to keep in mind. 

Link With Love

This is rule #1 folks! Give credit where credit is due.

Failing to do so can be very misleading. Whether you’re Instagram-ing an inspiration photo, sharing it on Facebook or including it in a blog post, link back to your source appropriately. Failure to do so absolutely gives the false impression to readers (intentional or not) that the photo is of your work. Not only is it dishonest, but its a very fast way to offend the creative genius responsible for the work, as well as your peers in the industry. (A quick little disclaimer in your profile is not enough.) 

Here’s an example of how I typically credit a photo on my blog

image by Brian Miller, via Green Wedding Shoes

As you can see, I’ve credited the image to the photographer, linked his site, and the blog I found it on with a hyperlink to the post where the specific photo was featured.

On Facebook, Instagram and Twitter you can easily “tag” their business page, or at the very least give the name of company in the comment. Look up more about tagging on Facebook here, or for Instagram here. Google is free and it knows how to do everything! Use it.

Pinterest Is Not A Source

Plain and simple. If you’re crediting Pinterest as the source of an image you’re being incredibly lazy, and again, disrespectful to the people who created it in the first place. Either take the steps to find the appropriate source of an image, or find another suitable image that you can find the source for. Try the steps here.

Share The Love

If you’re mentioning a business or an event – for whatever reason – link to (or tag) them. It’s the nice thing to do, and wouldn’t you want them to do the same for you? If there’s a reason that you don’t want to link to them, then you ought not to be mentioning them at all.

Take the time to find the appropriate link for their webpage and then go the extra mile and see if they have a Facebook page, Instagram or Twitter account, or a preferred hashtag. Now tag or link those correctly on whichever social platforms you’re using to spread the news about your new blog post.

What do I mean by that? If I feature a vendor on my blog, they will usually be linked multiple times in the post itself. Then, when I tweet the post on, or share it on my Facebook page, I’ll tag their page as well. When others see you sharing their links, they will hopefully reciprocate.

In this particular tweet I tagged Minted because their sale was the main topic of my linked blog post.


Be Sincere

Don’t be “that guy”. Whenever you share someone’s work or spread the word, it should be because you legitimately believe in them, love their style or found something they did or shared interesting. Not simply because it would be good for business to be associated with them. Bottom line, be sincere. When commenting on things with the intention of boosting your SEO. You don’t gain credibility by jumping on bandwagons. You’re best bet to succeed in business is to do what you like and feel, not because someone else is doing it, or because you feel like you should. 

Spread Good Web Karma

One good turn deserves another. If a business links, tags or tweets you, you don’t need to acknowledge it 100% of the time, (in case they’re being “that guy”) but it wouldn’t hurt. If you’re not willing to reciprocate with a retweet, at least say a simple “thank you” or favourite the tweet, “like” the pic or post, and so on. A little goes a long way. 

I always love to see The Wedding Cake Shoppe‘s work.


When you share a professional photographer’s photo or “regram“, never put a filter on someone else’s work. (Sidenote: my wedding photographer teases me every time my favourite Instagram filter turns my hair blue.) Their editing style is their signature and presenting their work consistently is key to their success and reputation. Most are very particular about their style, so keep in mind when you slap a vintage-looking filter on a professional’s photo it’s no longer a proper representation of their work and they might prefer not to be tagged in that case.


Take some time to learn the basics of each social media platform in order to link and tag with good etiquette in mind in order to be a good member of the creative community.

Real Wedding at Bagatelle Great House by WPIC Alumni in Barbados

Alicia Wiltshire, WPICC

Alicia Wiltshire, WPICC is the onsite Events Coordinator at Bagatelle Great House in Bagatelle, St.Thomas, Barbados. Danielle and I just had the pleasure of visiting Alicia at her venue for a site visit last week in Barbados. This is one of the most eclectic venues I have ever seen in my life!  There is something for everyone. A Tea Room, a Casino, a Saloon, private dining rooms, patio dining for smaller parties, etc.

Bagatelle Great House is a Historic Plantation House dating back to 1645 and is one of the 10 oldest houses on the island. This majestic property, rich in history, has retained all the charm and character of yesteryear as well as boasting some colourful history.  Bagatelle Great House is an Event Planners Dream Location for hosting events such as Barbados Weddings, Wedding Receptions, Parties and any special Event because of the versatility of the location. Choose from our many beautiful Rooms or Verandahs to host that special event. No mater the size of your Special Event we have a room that would be just right for you. Set on 5 acres of undulating beautifully manicured gardens, this property offers stunning backdrops for your function. Bagatelle boasts a beautiful Gazebo, set on a hill with breath taking views of the West Coast and out to the sea beyond. The garden also features a small woodland area with a bridge over a watercourse which is the perfect spot for those “I Do’s”.

Without further ado, please read on to see what Alicia had to say about a very special couple who she had the pleasure of working with at Bagatelle Great House:
“This couple’s journey down the aisle was very special to the couple and myself, due to the promotion Bagatelle Great House offered in 2013. The promotion encouraged wedding couples to submit a photo of themselves on property at Bagetelle. Facebook fans were invited to vote on their favourite couple.  The winners received a wedding reception including a case of champagne, centerpieces, Venue rental, a DJ, a two tiered cake, Photographer, Limo & a Boudoir Photo Shoot. Mr.& Mrs Reid were the winners as a result of the most votes from an online competition we held at Bagatelle Great House, Bagatelle St. Thomas, Barbados. The Wedding Reception was held on the 15th February 2014 on the Beautiful Sunset deck for 100 guests.

The bride and groom were asked to write of their experience and these are their comments, “Today was a magnificent, wonderful memorable day. Luv it!”

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photo: Daylight Photography

Photographer: Daylight Photography
Venue: Bagatelle Great House
Venue Coordinator: Alicia Wiltshire, WPICC
Limousine: Paradise Limousine Services Inc
Wedding Cake: Hazel’s Cakery
Wedding Planner: Shalia’s Weddings  
Couple: Crystal Cox & Jason Reid

Wedding Trends -April WPIC Get Together

By: Tracey Manailescu

Tracey Manailescu

Photo by

On Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 WPIC held a get together on Wedding Trends for 2014 at the beautiful St. George’s Golf & Country Club.

The entire event was planned and executed by WPIC’s intern, Urszula Matczak. This is no easy task, as one might imagine, and she did it with flair and grace. (Especially considering her target audience and attendees were fifty wedding planners…)

*A special thank you to our WPIC volunteers, Cindy He and Nazreen Faiz, who managed the registration table and the raffle draw.

Some of the highlights of the evening were a strolling fashion show, a trade show to meet and greet all of the vendors who particpated at the event, musical talent by the wonderful harpist Joanna Jordan, and a panel discussion about 2014 wedding trends.

The entire evening was captured on film by Enrique DeCordova Photography.

We had amazing food and service provided by St. George’s Golf & Country Club. Guess what?  The Catering and Events Manager, Jacqueline Lambert, just happens to be WPICC.  Go figure ;)

Some highlights of St. George’s Golf & Country Club:

  • Ample free parking
  • Award winning cuisine fom the Chef and his culinary team
  • Sommelier to suggest wine pairings for your courses
  • A large selection of late night stations
  • Beautiful views of the Award Winning Golf Course and the historic 1920’s Club House is stunning   Our wonderful volunteers, Cindy and Nazreen





Contributing Awesome Vendors:

Venue: St. George’s Golf and Country Club
Photography: Enrique Decordova Photography
Tuxedos: Andrew’s Formals
Wedding Cakes: Le Dolci
Linens & Florals: Susan Murray Luxury Linen and Decor Reatals
Harpist: Joanna Jordan Electric Harpist
Wedding Dresses: She’s So Beautiful Bridal Boutique
Hair & Makeup: Aglow By Joan – Hair And Makeup

Thank you to everyone who participated in the trade show and panel, and thank you to our wonderful WPIC Alumni  who came out to network & learn.

We hope that enjoyed the evening!

Keeping Children Happy at Your Wedding (An Interview With Children & Alumni)

By: Tracey Manailescu

Tracey M Events
Photo: Avenue Photo

I had so much fun putting this blog together:)  How could I not?  I interviewed 13 adorable children to get their opinions of what couples can do to make a wedding better for them, and then asked WPIC Alumni to share some of their favourite stories about working with children.

www.traceymevents.cawww.traceymevents.caSophia, 6 & Ella 4 (almost 5)Audrey, 3 (almost 4)
  Alexandros,  5                Brooklynn, 7            Sophia, 6 & Ella 4             Audrey, 3
Julian, 4Joelle, 10Brayden, 11Sierra, 6
Julian, 4                     Joelle, 10                Brayden, 11                     Sierra, 6
Daniel, 15Nicole, 10Graydon,
Daniel, 15               Nicole, 10                  Graydon, 5                     Samara, 7


What did you think about the CEREMONY?

“Wedding was good. A little fun.” -Julian, 4

“It was kind of boring, because it was just them talking about those people getting married.” -Nicole, 10

“It was boring, but it was nice to see them get married.” -Daniel, 15

“Uncle Greg’s wedding -  I liked that it was short and didn’t cut the time for the party and the eating and stuff.” -Joelle, 10

“Lots of people were there, and I couldn’t hear Mommy when lots of people talked so much.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“I was bored.” -Sierra, 6

“It was pretty cool. Just a little bit boring.” -Brayden, 11

“It was okay, I like the second part better. (The reception)”-Ella, 6

“Ceremony? What’s that? (I explain) Oh, my favorite part was when the prince and the princess kissed.” -Sophia, 4 (almost 5)

“It was good but I didn’t like that we were just sitting around watching.” -Alexandros, 5

“It was fun just watching them get married and the beautiful bride walking down the aisle in a beautiful dress.” -Brooklynn, 7

“It was really wet outside so they stopped talking and we got to take our shoes off.” -Graydon, 5

“It was okay?” -Samara, 7


What is your BEST memory of a wedding that you have attended?

“Dancing with the bride.” -Julian, 4

“Dancing!” -Nicole, 10

“The dancing and the food, especially the broccoli soup.” Daniel, 15

“Dancing with my aunt and uncle at their wedding and seeing all my cousins that I hadn’t seen in ages” -Joelle, 10

“When everyone stopped talking.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“That like, um, we went to a big thing and it had lots of food. Something that you went in, like a mansion or something. ” -Sierra, 6

“It was probably when the music went on, and everybody started dancing.” -Brayden, 11

“I loved it when they were cutting the cake and feeding it to eachother. I liked the music too, and dancing, and getting dressed up very fancy with my butterfly bracelet.” -Ella, 6

“I remember dancing with daddy on his toes. That was fun. I liked the food too…it keeps coming and coming and coming. And I really liked the cake. Cake is my favorite. I like cake.” -Sophia, 4 (almost 5)

“My favourite part was when we were eating our dinner, and dancing with Theia Liz (the Bride) and I love when we were allowed to run around!” -Alexandros, 5

“Dancing with my cousin Sierra because we could then show off our dance moves.” -Brooklynn, 7

“Dancing! I got to wear tap shoes!” -Graydon, 5

“I got to wear my princess dress.” -Samara, 7


What is your WORST memory of a wedding that you have attended?

“I liked everything.” -Julian, 4

“Ceremony.” -Nicole, 10

“It was all nice.” -Daniel, 15

“Showing up with a pom pom hairstyle that made me look like smaller version of mini mouse!” -Joelle, 10 *Message from mom: “Her hair was straightened the day before and should have just been blow dried and flat ironed on the wedding day but she decided to wash it in the shower about two hours before the wedding and I certainly did not have the time to do it completely over so my sister gave her poufs!

“When everyone kept running. All the kids were running too fast, but I wasn’t running. I was just walking.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“We had to sit down and wait for the wedding girl and the wedding man to come out. ” -Sierra, 6

“Probably when we all had to sit down, and everbody had to listen to those really long speeches.  It was really boring! ” -Brayden, 11

“Those people who were talking and talking and talking…and talking! I had to be quiet for too long!” (Referring to the speeches) -Ella, 6

“I didn’t want chicken fingers and french fries! Huhhhh!  I wanted what the big people had (flaring hands)!” -Sophia, 4 (almost 5)

“Just the sitting around at the church because it was so boring. It made me need to go to the washroom….that’s how long it took…” -Alexandros, 5

“When you don’t like the food or dessert, I was hungry by the end of the night.” -Brooklynn, 7

“The adults dancing. It freaks me out.” -Graydon, 5

“Eating the bad food.” -Samara, 7


What could the couple have done to make it more FUN for you?

“Have a jumping castle.” -Julian, 4

“Nothing.” -Nicole, 10

“There is nothing I can say bad about it!” -Daniel, 15

“They could have played some more kid friendly music at the reception because it was all adult Jamaican music that I didn’t know so much.” -Joelle, 10

“When the grownups didn’t have to tell their kids to not run at ‘meetings’.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“I would say put ice cream in the wedding. ” -Sierra, 6

“Certain place like a small room where smaller kids go, when speeches start or where we had to sit down for a long time. ” -Brayden, 11

“Remember when I was trying to catch those flowers? Maybe it could be a candy bouquet instead!” -Ella, 6

“Maybe a bouncy castle?” -Sophia, 4 (amost 5)

“Put play things near the dance floor so the kids can play with toys.” -Alexandros, 5

“Add a play place (bouncy castle) so all the kids could have fun together.” -Brooklynn, 7

“Make it a skylanders party with a skylanders cake” -Graydon, 5

“Have another wedding – so I could wear another dress.” -Samara, 7


Did you get in TROUBLE at the wedding?

“No trouble.” -Julian, 4

“No. Ummm…Wait.  Yeah, because we went upstairs. The people that worked there told us to come down.” -Nicole, 10

“No!  I don’t think so…” -Daniel, 15

“No.” -Joelle, 10

“No. I was a good girl, because I am a big girl. And I didn’t touch stuff, like the cake, but it wasn’t for a birthday.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“No!” -Sierra, 6

“No. ” -Brayden, 11

” NO! Hmmmm, nope.” -Ella, 6

“Well, just once when I dropped the kneeling thing in the church. It made a loud noise. But it wasn’t my fault.” -Sophia, 4 (almost 5)

“Actually, No!” -Alexandros, 5

“No.” -Brooklynn, 7

“Why did I get in trouble?!!” -Graydon, 5

“No.” -Samara, 7


Would you go to another WEDDING?

“No. I’d rather go to a playground, or toy store.” -Julian, 4

“Yeah!” -Nicole, 10

“Of course.  There’s a lot of good food and dancing.” -Daniel 15

“Yes I would, because weddings are very fun, and if I had the chance to go to another one, I would.” -Joelle, 10

“No. Just one. Because my friend Aleta (imaginary friend) doesn’t want to go.” -Audrey, 3 (almost 4)

“Yeah.” -Sierra, 6

“Yeah.” -Brayden, 11

“Yes! Weddings are my favorite!” -Ella, 6

“Yes!! Why are you asking me all these questions? Are we going today?” -Sophia, 4 (almost 5)

“I actually would. Only if it is my wedding….oh…or, if it’s people I know!” -Alexandros, 5

“Yes.” -Brooklynn, 7

“No.” -Graydon, 5

“Yes, are you getting married?!!” -Samara, 7

Blog children at weddings

Couples stress endlessly about how to make their wedding different than anyone else’s and yet, somehow forget the little things…the children they invite :)  Children can be your worst critics or your biggest cheering squad, depending on how things are handled. It is really not difficult…

Keep them entertained, keep their hands busy and give them something to look forward to. Really, it is that simple!

Blog Ring_Bearer_Gift

Children want a children’s menu. You could be the “coolest adult ever” with a children’s buffet (Pizza, chicken fingers, hamburgers, hot dogs, taco station, build your own nachos, pasta, jello, ice cream sundae station, etc.)

Blog Children eating

If you want an adults-only reception, why not offer optional childcare for your guests? There are many professional babysitting companies for hire around the world. The cost is usually about $15-$25 per hour, per sitter. Check if your wedding venue has a separate room where the kids can hang out with pizza, movies, popcorn, craft stations, X-Box, etc.  Or, set them up in a hotel room where some of the guests are staying.

Children at weddings sneaking cake

Now for some cute and entertaining stories from some of our WPIC Alumni:

“I had a wedding that a total of 8 kids in the bridal party! The original plan was for them to walk 2 at a time down the aisle, but the bride knew that kids will be kids and just to let them do their thing. Well the first three pairs started down the aisle, then the first set of boys realized that the youngest girls were starting and ran all the way back down the aisle. This caused all the kids to run right back to the very start, and they all then proceeded to race to the altar. The guests absolutely loved it!” -Melissa Gurley of Gurley Events

“For my own wedding I was walking hand in hand down the aisle with my 22 month old daughter and she decided to b-line; so there I was chasing after her! We finally got back on track and then 2 minutes after the ceremony was over (in the Turks & Caicos heat) she decided she was NOT going to wear her fluffy tulle dress anymore! All of our wedding pictures showcase her in a diaper with sweaty curly hair. You just have to roll with it.”
-Ashlie Metcalf of Harmony Wedding & Event Coordination

“I worked with a lovely family a few years back. The flower girl threw a hissy fit just as she was about to walk down the aisle. She didn’t want to walk down the aisle with her Mum, with any of the bridesmaids, or with the bride! Who does she want to walk down the aisle with her? ME! The Wedding Coordinator! Needless to say, it was cute and fun. She made it down the aisle in one piece, and with no tears.” -Christina Spring of  A La Carte Event Management

“I love when there are kids at the wedding and in the wedding party – they add memories.  There’s been a few “cute” photo ops too… in the church a guest’s child was lying in the aisle while the ceremony was going on and he was watching the fans on the ceiling, and entertaining himself for the hour ceremony. The best one was when an out of province B&G got married in Collingwood and when I asked they said kids were invited BUT that during the dinner and speeches they would be having their own party (which we also set up and had 3 sitters with them – their ages ranged from 3 months – 10 years old about 8 of them)  After the first dance the kids came back and we had the sitters choreograph a dance for the B&G – WE made a BIG fuss over it with a huge introduction and lights and loud music on their entrance and then they all danced for the B&G ….. It brought tears to the Bride’s eyes and made this wedding which was more than 4 years ago a very memorable one for not only me and my team but all the guests.  Small miracles BIG BIG MEMORIES!” -Debbie Savic of Fresh Occasion Coordination

“At my brother’s wedding, our nephew, who was 2 at the time, was the junior groomsman. I gave him and the junior bridesmaid a little nudge to get them started, and the walk up the aisle went well for the first few feet, and then he wanted to come back to me instead of walking up to his Mom like we rehearsed. It turns out he had put his toy helicopter in the pocket of my dress, and wanted it with him. Once he had it, he ran to the junior bridesmaid, and happily walked up the aisle holding her hand with the helicopter in the other hand.” Erin Bosak of Erin Bosak Events

“My sister’s wedding, our nephew (5 at the time) was a holy terror. He refused to go down the aisle, and his dad ended up carrying him down – kicking and screaming all the way. He finally calmed down when he joined the rest of the bridal party… but he became the star of the show and added tons of cute “awwwwws” and giggles to an otherwise dull ceremony! Kids make the best entertainment!” -Sharon Kawano of Kawano Decor & Design

“The couple’s 5 y o nephew was the ring bearer.  He got up & said he wanted to sing a song for the bride and groom.  We turned off the music & the boy belted out this country song for the bride & groom to dance to.  I thought he was going to sing a couple lines, but nope, he sang the whole song & insisted everyone dance while he sang.  It wasn’t planned & was really cute.” -Danielle Andrews Sunkel of The Wedding Planners

“My brother/sister-in-law wanted my 3 year old daughter in their wedding. She did great at getting down the aisle, sitting quietly through the ceremony but afterwards when pictures were to be taken – she was done. She has the “evil eye/I’m gonna kill” look in all the wedding pictures. She didn’t want to be in them & made sure we’ll remember that day always. LOL!” -Nicole Marshall of Beautifully Planned Weddings & Events