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  • Melissa & Dio’s Wedding 4.8.17
    It was truly an honor to be a part of Melissa and Dio Bernal’s wedding.   During our initial meeting back in March, I loved how much fun they were just discussing the details of their wedding and what they were looking for from me.  I knew at that point that they were excited to be getting married and wanted to party with their friends and family.  And party we did!
    The weather this past weekend was amazing!  I was happy they were able to have their ceremony outside at the English Manor.  The grounds there are amazing and perfect for pictures.  You could see how happy they were from the start to end of their ceremony.
    The reception was a blast! They had a lot of different genres of music and everyone was into it. There truly is no better feeling than when your party is out on the dance floor all night.
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    They had some unique touches through out the night.  from specific bridal party entrance songs to the anniversary dance. There were even signs all around to entertain the guests. My favorite was “Trust me, you can Dance – Vodka”
    Melissa and Dio ended the night with a mix of Bill Medley’s “The Time of My Life” and The Black Eyed Peas version “The Time (Dirty Bit)
    Congratulations Melissa and Dio!!!
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  • “Tossing the Bouquet, Garter and All That Awkward Jazz…” by Ryan McLaughlin
    I love my job as MC and I think it shows
    I love my job as MC and I think it shows

    Our online planner is awesome. Utilizing it helps organize the little details we (as your MC and DJ) need to make your big day spectacular.

    The tossing of the bouquet and removing garter section always intrigues me when reviewing with couples. It seems to be a tradition that is slowly dying. Very rarely have I seen couples go the full mile for this after cake tradition. My wife Melissa and I skipped it at our wedding 3 years ago.  We cut the cake then got right back to partying.

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    We just cut the cake at out wedding. Then got back to partying!
    If you’re unsure about tossing the bouquet or removing the garter, here are some things to consider:
    The Pros:
    1) Tradition.  It’s something the guests (the singles) may look forward to.
    2) Your expectations.  Some brides have always wanted to throw the bouquet.  For some it’s part of the overall experience of the wedding day.
    3) It’s kind of fun to watch your friends squirm throughout it, especially when we tell the bride and groom they choose when to stop the garter from going up the leg.
    The Cons:
    1) Awkward. Something about going under my wife’s beautiful dress in front of my 92 year old grandmother made me a bit uncomfortable.
    2) Caught in the wrong hands. Once I had a wedding where a 10 year old boy caught the garter, we wound up skipping the next step obviously.
    3) Time killer. That 10-15 minutes is potentially 5 more requested songs for the dancing portion of your party. Plus it usually happens in the last 90  minutes of the reception which is prime dancing time.
    Improvise the tradition! 
    – If you’re on the fence about this wedding tradition, modify it. Some couples only do the bouquet toss (because who wouldn’t want to throw some flowers around) and others stop at the groom throwing the garter (to avoid two strangers having that much contact.)
    – We once went to a wedding where we were the next couple to marry, so our friends gave us the bouquet as a passing of the torch.
    – We can throw the focus on the married couples instead with an anniversary dance.
    Remember it’s your big day.  Stick to tradition, improvise or modify, or skip everything and just keep partying.   We’ll do whatever you wish!
  • Save the date! Now what? Part 2

    Congrats, you have your date and venue.  Now where do you go from here?  That is entirely up to you and your future spouse.  Below are some of my wedding planning experiences.

    Vendors– You may want to book vendors within a certain time frame.  The wedding business is planned months, sometimes years in advanced.  If you really like a certain vendor’s services, you will want to make sure that your date is available. Take it or leave it tip- Go to bridal shows.  They will most likely have free food, deals, and raffles.  Did I mention free food?!  Bridal shows will allow you to see multiple types of vendors all in one night, which helps if your schedule is busy.

    Make it your day- My wife and I went by a philosophy of what we thought made a good celebration.  Good food, good music/entertainment.  That’s it.  Why? We felt that’s what most people talk about when describing a friend or family member’s wedding reception.  People remember what stands out the most to them throughout the night, and if alcohol is involved, it may not be much.  We were a little crafty but it wasn’t our priority.  Again plan your vision of your wedding and have it your own way.

    And when the day comes…

    Enjoy it- People will and have probably told you by now that the day goes by so fast.  They aren’t lying, before you know it, it’s time to say goodnight and it’s all over.  All that planning, budgeting and scheduling and booking vendors, crafting decorations finally has come to an end.  It may seem over the top at times, but it is all worth celebrating a new chapter in your lives together.

    Take it or Leave it tip- Grab your spouse at some point of the night and pull them to the side and take it all in; one place where both sides of your family and friends have gathered to celebrate your marriage, it’s quite a sight.  Good luck to you and may you have an incredible day of celebration towards everlasting love and happiness.

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  • We’re engaged! Now what?

    283080_627624987988_1776831528_nI proposed to my wife in September of 2012.  It was one of the best days of my life.  After all of the congratulations received, there comes a point where the planning for this joyous occasion must begin.  Below are some of my experiences throughout this incredible journey:

    • Take your time- Unless you are in a rush to get married, enjoy your new title as a fiancé.  It’s your day (and of course your future spouses). In the beginning, middle, or final stages of planning, take time to have fun and enjoy one another.  I bet you have been asked multiple times about when or where it will be.  How should you know? You just put the ring on her finger and finished posting about it via social media.  Then again, chances are you may have an idea of a date or month or day in mind.  Start planning when you are both ready.

    Take it or leave it tip- Stay involved.  I found discussing our wedding turned out to be very beneficial.  I’ll admit I wasn’t fond of picking out flowers or figuring out invitation fonts, but I was there for it and it was a decision we made together.

     

    • Organization- My wife is the most organized person I know.  She had a binder that held our budget info, our contributions towards deposits or fees from vendors, a calendar of when things were due, and when things needed to be scheduled by.  I’ll admit I gave her a hard time about it and joked how silly it was, but it was extremely helpful and for that I am grateful she did it because it made the process smoother. Take it or leave it tip- Plan comfortably; it helps build communication with your future spouse.

     

    • Budget. Figure out what your financial situation will be.  What you can and cannot afford (Thank you, binder!).  Do you want it or do you need it? Take it or leave it tip: I went out and bought a change counting jar.   Together, just over a year we saved around $500 based just off loose change.  We saved it for the final week.  You will find tedious things are needed, such as paying the limo’s overtime, if necessary, pre-party lunch with your groomsmen or bridesmaids.  It’s some extra cash lying around for a “just in case” moment.

     

    • Venue.  This is a big decision.  Where and when will your big celebration be?  This was a big weight off our shoulders.  You plan the spot and then everything else will mostly build around it.

    Take it or leave it tip #1- Make an estimated head count of how many guests may attend.  Some venues can only carry so many people, so it may help with some decisions.

    Take it or leave it tip #2- For venue AND vendor appointments, write down questions you may have.  Along with that binder, my wife also carried around a black marble notebook filled with all kinds of questions.  Did I think it was over the top? At the moment yes, I gave her heat for having it, but again, it was extremely helpful to answer any questions we were bound to forget but remember after the appointment

    Take it or leave it tip #3- At this point have an idea of what day of the week, month, and year in which you want to be married in.  Can’t decide? Have your fiancé write three potential months and you do the same, and then reveal them to each other.  You’ll find yourself asking each other why those months were chosen, perhaps picking the same month or season at least.

     

    Plan at your own speed, and have fun.  After all, you’re planning for one of the biggest celebrations of your life.

     

    To be continued…

     

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