Wedding Venue Tulsa : Biggest Planning

Michael Stairs: My name is Michael Stairs. I’m with Camp Loughridge in South Tulsa and I’m the summer camp director. But I’m here today is the sidekick for Kinsey Rhodes who’s the Wedding Venue Tulsa coordinator. We’re here to talk about wedding venues Tulsa and all things weddings and stuff like that.

Kinsey, I’ve got a question for you. Let’s say that a bride only became a bride over the holidays. Her beloved ask her to marry him and now she’s on the other side of the New Year’s and she needs to get started trying to figure out what resources are there for getting married in the Tulsa area. What is there available? Where does she go? What does she do?

Kinsey Rhodes: Yes, absolutely especially for that bride, January is the biggest planning start time for everyone basically.

Michael: June is like a big Wedding Venue Tulsa month, but January is the big planning kickoff.

Kinsey: Exactly. Yes, there is the Tulsa wedding show. They do– I’m sure you’ve heard the little jingle on all the commercials on the local channels. They do two big shows a year; one in January and one in July-August area. That’s a good place to start;the Tulsa Wedding Show in January. It takes a special person to be able to thrive in a situation like that.

Michael: Explain that a little bit. What kind of person does it take? Again, we’re talking with Kinsey Rhodes, Wedding Venue Tulsa.

Kinsey: A special person that thrives when you’re around a thousand people and who can really focus on a conversation even with a bunch of noise buzzing behind you, and who doesn’t get overwhelmed, because–

Michael: Likes all the energy that comes with a big happening, big event.

Kinsey: Yes it’s always at the Renaissance Hotel close to Broken Arrow and it’s a lot of people. People are just handing you things right and left. You’re trying to have a legitimate conversation with someone who might be trying to have a conversation with four different people. It’s just a lot. There’s definitely some other local and national resources for a bride who maybe is starting the planning process at a different time of the year or doesn’t necessarily want to be in the atmosphere of the craziness of the wedding show.

Michael: Does Loughridge participate in the big show?

Kinsey: Yes, we do we participate in both shows, we’ll have a booth in both. It’s a long term partnership that we’ve had with them.

Michael: A lot of the Tulsa wedding venues are going to participate in the show, you get a good look at the cross-section of what’s available.

Kinsey: I would say that about half of the venues in Tulsa are at the wedding show. Yes.

Michael: Okay, but the wedding show is much more than just the venue.

Kinsey: Absolutely yes. Their slogan is “Plan your day in a day.”

Michael: Okay, everybody’s come into one place?

Kinsey: Yes. It’s everyone. You can go there if all you need is a deejay, or you can go there if all you have left to plan is your invitations or something. It’s a really broad spectrum and you end up walking the whole show even if you’re only looking for a photographer.

Michael: Okay, well let’s switch over here. Let’s say that someone is intimidated by the big show and thinks that they might go into lock down if they were in an environment where there’s just so much going on, and they’d really much rather have more of an individual approach where they can really be face to face. What are some of the options there?

Kinsey: One of my favorite is Brides of Oklahoma. If you are familiar with the Wedding Venue Tulsa world at all. You’ve heard the name. They have a very big magazine presence and a web based presence. The great thing about it is, it’s all local. Most of the businesses are based out of Tulsa Oklahoma City. It’s great. It’s one of the few magazines that I still look at, [laughs] now. I can probably go through it 10 different times and pick out something different every single time. They have all of their vendors have a web profile, have contact information, you can go through and just say “I’m looking for invitations.” Then it comes up with all the different people there and it’s all Tulsa or Oklahoma City people.

You’re not trying to find someone– you’re not trying to plan a wedding with vendors that are like in L.A. or something. It’s all local. They do a good job of putting their vendors work on social media and on Web sites so you can see it all the time, and you can see, “Is my vendor consistent? Do I like all of their work? Or do I just like this one wedding that they did?” Or something like that. Brides of Oklahoma calm is definitely one of my favorites.

Michael: Are there places on that for, like user reviews where you can hear from other brides and their comments on some of the vendors that have been used there?

Kinsey: Most of the time brides of Oklahoma will link you to other reviews. I don’t think they keep them on their website.

But the brides of Oklahoma has a community that works within each other. So if you start working with this vendor then they’ll probably recommend you with this vendor and goes back and forth.

Michael: Talking about vendor relationships, Loughridge already has several vendor relationships with caterers and deejays and photo booths and all that stuff. Do you see that as a restrictive thing or do you see that as a convenience thing?

Kinsey: I definitely think it’s a convenience thing. Like Loughridge specifically, we have caterers that are only required vendor and just that’s already convenient just because there are so many options for catering. It is not really limiting, its just convenient and saying, “Okay, I only have to really look into these three.”

These three, they’ve been to the venue. They know what they’re doing. It’s a well-oiled machine by now. I don’t have to worry about getting insurance. A lot of venues will require you to have X amount hundred dollars insurance. There’s no liabilities on the bride, anything like that. As far as other things, we make recommendations for things like a deejay or photographer or photo booth and it’s just because we’ve seen their work consistently and we know that they’ve been to the venue. They know what our rules are. They know the time frames. We trust them to respect our couples and as well as our buildings.

Michael: One scenario that could happen, is that someone could go to the big Wedding Venue Tulsa show or any other wedding shows, not make any decisions there. They could just walk through, get in the spirit of things see what else out there. They come see you.

Kinsey: Yes, definitely.

Michael: Then they can be a little bit aware of what they want because I would imagine that, although a lot of brides probably dreamed of the day since they were a little girl, there are a lot of– when it actually comes right down to it and paying for it. Then all of a sudden, it’s a whole new ballgame.

Kinsey: Right and you don’t want to lock in anything before you have a venue because you don’t know what your venue’s rules are going to be. There are some venues that say you can bring in whatever you want, whoever you want, whenever you want. Then there’s some venues that say, we have exclusive lighting, only this person can bring in up lighting for the reception. Only this person can– Or some venues are all inclusive. You don’t want to lock down anything on a whim before you have a venue.

Michael: Because you could. Yes I could see where you could get into some trouble. If you went to a wedding show someone talked you into making a deal on flowers or making a deal on something else. Only to find out that you can’t get the venue you want because of the date or because of a preferred vendor relationship or something like that.

Kinsey: Yes, absolutely, it’s just working backwards.

Michael: Do brides talk to other brides about what great venues about what are better venues?

Kinsey: Definitely. There’s so much good in the word of mouth. There’s so much that could be limiting and holding you back.

Michael: Give me an example because I think good is you put your ear to the ground and if your friend had their Wedding Venue Tulsa there, you trust her and so you’d want to follow that direction. But what is some of the downside if you follow that path?

Kinsey: Somebody might say, “Oh well the bridal suite was so hot that day. That just ruined my day because the bridal suite was so hot.” Or it could have been December and someone in the groom’s room was cranking up the heat because they were cold and it just so happened. Just random things like that and then it just puts this negative connotation in your mind of that place or someone says “Well, we didn’t really like this about the venue.” but that could be something that you’re not even planning on using Wedding Venue Tulsa .

Michael: Right. But it still puts a negative taste in your mouth.

Kinsey: Exactly, Yes. The industry and the business just changes so much it’s so trendy and it changes so much and we’re constantly improving. All the vendors across the board are. Even if your friend had a concern about the heat in the bridal suite, it’s something that’s probably been fixed in the past three years.

Michael: At least that is a question you can ask when you, when someone comes in to talk to you or to whatever venue is used they can at least have that as a question. “Okay, tell me about the temperature in the bridal suite I heard that it can get hot just try to find out what’s going on.”

Kinsey: Right, exactly, I think it’s important no matter what vendor to look at their body of work instead of just the specific Wedding Venue Tulsa that you liked or–

Michael: Okay, there’s we’re just starting out 2017. We’re here talking with Kinsey Rhodes who is the wedding coordinator at Loughridge and thank you for joining us very much.

Kinsey: Thanks Mike.

Michael: Okay, let’s we’ll just let that run or actually you know what I’m going to stop it and restart it.

[00:10:44] [END OF AUDIO]