Hello Productions

Pittsburgh Wedding and Event Planners

Throwing the Best Bridal Shower May 21, 2013

Summer is a popular time for bridal showers so we have a refresher course on throwing the best bridal shower you can. If you’re a bride, forward this blog onto your maid of honor! And if you are a past bride, some of these ideas can apply to a baby shower as well!

 

The Theme

 

Showers are a great opportunity for a fun theme, although you don’t have to have one. And don’t worry about matching the wedding – this is the time to focus on what the bride likes.

 

Here are some of our favorite 2013 bridal shower themes:

 
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Clockwise from top left: Travel Theme (www.weddingwindow.com), Retro Bride Theme (www.weddingwindow.com), Bubbles & Bliss Theme (www.weddingwindow.com), Wine & Cheese Theme (www.weddingwindow.com), Tea Party Theme (www.thesweetestoccasion.com)

 

The Invites

 

If you are in charge of planning the shower, you may want to surprise the bride with some of the details, but it is a good idea to confirm the invite list. Often, out-of-town guests are not able to make the bridal shower, but may appreciate being thought of.

 

Don’t forget to include the bride’s website and/or registry on the shower invitation!

 

The Timing

 

Typically, a bridal shower is held within two months of the wedding date; however, it can be moved up or back depending on the bride’s schedule, venue availability, etc. It’s a good idea to check your local event guide to see if anything major will be happening that same weekend. An event that closes streets (such as a parade or marathon) can make it tricky for guests to be on time.

 
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The Food

 

If you’re throwing the shower at a restaurant, your food choices will be be determined by their menu. If you are throwing the shower at someone’s home, it is always a nice idea to incorporate a favorite food or drink of the bride into the menu. Remember, you don’t have to serve a full meal at the shower. You could do drinks and desserts or display a variety of fun appetizers.

 

The Gifts

 

While the bride may be tempted to take the gifts and run, it’s customary to open the gifts in front of the guests. Encourage the bride to take her time while opening the gifts so that each guest gets their moment in the spotlight, but keep the process moving at a good pace. Be respectable and appreciative, and remind guests you will spend time rereading all the cards and looking at all the gifts on your own time. If there are guests that do not know everyone, it is a nice idea to explain who they are and how you know them as you open their gift (out-of-town aunt, college roommate, etc.).

 
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The Games

 

You may cringe at the thought of games, but they can help your guests get to know one another, get to know the bride (and groom) better, and let them take part in the shower festivities. For some fun game ideas, click here: (https://helloproductions.wordpress.com/2011/05/25/bridal-shower-games-worth-sticking-around-for/).

 

The Groom

 

If you’re planning a shower, it’s a nice surprise to ask the groom to show up at the end of the shower. Guests will appreciate seeing the groom and if he wants to take it one step further, he could surprise the bride with flowers.

 

For those past brides out there, what was your bridal shower theme? Comment below!

 

Hello Helps Elizabeth Forward School District Host Prom for Students with Disabilities May 18, 2013

Filed under: Hello News — Hello Productions @ 3:21 pm
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For Life Skills’ students in seven schools in the Mon Valley and South Hills area, May brings the opportunity to attend a prom that they’ll never forget.

 

High school students from Elizabeth Forward, Chartiers Valley, Bethel Park, South Fayette, Baldwin, South Allegheny and Keystone Oaks school districts regularly meet to interact for social and educational opportunities. As one of their activities, the schools have included a prom in the host school’s gym with lunch provided by the cafeteria and entertainment by the staff. This year, Elizabeth Forward School District is hosting the prom and wanted to enhance it to be more like a high school prom. Through one of our administrators, they were connected with Hello Productions‘ very own Director of Marketing & Events, Colleen Geletko.

 

Colleen became involved and offered her event planning services free of charge. After meeting with district administrators, she began spreading awareness about the event within the event industry and signed on some of the region’s most talented vendors. Bella Sera in Canonsburg, PA will serve as the venue of the prom, donating the venue and providing a very fair catering package which has been sustained by generous supporters including U. S. Steel, PJ Dick Inc and P.E.M.CO Educational & Contract Furniture. In March, female students visited Allegheny County’s Project Prom store and selected dresses, shoes and accessories, while male students are being provided suits from staff and students at the districts. On the morning of the prom, Image One Salon will visit Elizabeth Forward High School and South Hills Beauty Academy will visit other participating schools to provide haircuts for the male students and light make up and updos for the female students. When the students arrive at Bella Sera, each will receive a boutonniere or corsage provided by Dragonfly Florist.

 

At the prom, students will be entertained by Comedy Magician Lee Terobosic and DJ Mike Ley of Marquee Wedding Company. Josh Mariana Photography will provide photography and videography services, as well as a photo booth for students to capture their experience with friends. A student from each school will be recognized on the Congeniality Court. The prom will be held from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 29, 2013.

 

Next year’s prom will be hosted by another of the seven districts. Hello Productions and many of the vendors hope to stay involved with this annual event and help it to continue to grow. For more information on how to get involved with this year’s prom, please contact Colleen Geletko at Hello Productions. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

 

Top 10 Things to Remember When Planning a Conference or Corporate Meeting in Pittsburgh May 10, 2013

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1. Double-check the date. You want as many attendees as possible, so make sure your dates do not conflict with any holidays or other industry conferences. OPM.gov has a list of the upcoming national holidays.

 

2. Discuss the budget. Knowing your budget ahead of time will help determine your conference agenda and whether or not you will include meals or other activities.

 

3. Have online registration. Using an online registration website is a great way to collect your attendees’ information, keep it organized and print agendas and sign-in lists. Hello Productions has online registration experience and can easily help you set up and manage your registration.

 

4. Promote the event. Whether your conference is geared toward employees within your own company or open to the public, make sure you get the word out there! Advertise internally and with industry-related sources.

 

5. Select the right venue. It’s important to pick a venue that can adequately hold your group. If you are going to have breakout sessions, make sure the venue has plenty of rooms that you can use. A hotel is a great venue if you want to include a meal with your conference. If you’re looking to get away for a team-building retreat, pick a location that is a farther away from your everyday work. Companies will often opt to have a conference or meeting at their own facility, but remember that you will have everyone’s full attention if you are at a new location.

 
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6. Check the technology. When picking a venue, be sure to ask if the technology requirements you will need are available. These may include projectors, screens, microphones, sound systems and podiums. If you have any speakers who would prefer a flipchart and markers, be sure to have these ready ahead of time.

 

7. Have a guest speaker. Even if your meeting is small with just internal employees, it’s still a great idea to have a guest speaker. It can be someone who is an expert in your industry or someone with a motivational story to tell. If your budget doesn’t include a speaker, why not ask one of your employees to share an inspirational story?

 

8. Prepare for registration. When you are planning out registration and getting ready to print your attendee packets, imagine yourself as an attendee and walk through the day. Make sure you have the appropriate signage, instructions and people to answer questions. You may want to ask yourself: When I first get to the venue, where do I go? Is there a map in the packet? Will lunch be provided and if so, where? What if I have a dietary restriction? Are there bathrooms nearby? Will there be breaks so I can check my cell phone, email, etc.?

 

9. Memorable moment. Every conference or meeting should have something memorable for its attendees. Here are just a few examples:

a. Use a real-time polling system (such as http://www.polleverywhere.com/) in your sessions to create audience interactions. Use it to find out their opinions about the company or products, submit questions or new ideas, or have silly polls to get everyone paying attention and involved!

b. Hand out something fun for questions asked, answers submitted, ideas given, etc. These could be fun stress reliever ball, raffle tickets for prizes later or candy.

c. Have a themed lunch or dinner, such as a taco bar or different items from favorite local places. If you’re not including a meal, surprise attendees with snacks, such as popcorn brought to each table or a make-your-own trail mix bar so they can be re-energized for the afternoon session.

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10. Wrap up. Email your attendees a survey after the conference (or have them fill out one before they leave) so you can use their comments to improve next year’s conference!

 

Hello Productions is happy to help plan, organize and run your next conference! Contact us today at 412-288-7333 or ashley@helloproductions.com. For other ideas, feel free to check out our Corporate Photo Gallery.