We were blessed with a wonderful wedding day. Almost everything went without a hitch, and I didn't have even one moment of worry, despite how nervous I was about all the details being perfect. They say your wedding day is all a blur, but I have so many special memories that will be with me for a lifetime.
I went to the Hy-Vee on 156th and Maple. I didn't know what I wanted for flowers at my wedding, so I definitely was looking for guidance from the floral department. However, the manager was cold and unfriendly, and didn't go out of her way to help me out with suggestions. Apart from that, I was also taken aback by the prices. I ended up doing the bouquets, boutonnieres, and corsages myself, but the arrangements Hy-Vee did for the church were much smaller than I expected, especially given the prices. I would not recommend them for flowers.
When I first started looking at photographers, I was overwhelmed by the cost, in addition to the price of the prints that you have to order afterwards. Ben DeVries offers a CD of all the images he takes, including both edited and unedited shots, and gives you a waiver to print these on your own. I really appreciate this kind of freedom in choosing my prints. He also was very flexible the day of the wedding, going with us to a couple different sites to take pictures, and staying well into the reception. I would have liked a little more direction from him on the posed photos at the church, as we have a few where one person's head is partially in front of someone else's, but other than that, I am very happy with the quality of the work.
We had booked the sunroom at Wheatfields about six months in advance, and my mother-in-law talked to them several times up until the wedding about food, liquor, being able to decorate the room, etc. But when we arrived at 7pm for dinner, they had seated other patrons in the room we had reserved. It turned out I had a voicemail on my phone from 5:55pm (when we were already in the wedding rehearsal), asking whether we planned to keep our appointment for 6:00. Even if we had scheduled for 6pm (which we didn't, we scheduled for 7pm), why would they call to confirm at 5:55 the day of the event??? It was incredibly frustrating and my mother-in-law was devastated that the event she had worked so hard to plan had been forgotten. To the servers' credit, they worked very hard to get the room set up for us (although they had to kick out the poor customers who had already been seated in there!), and the food was very good. But the shocking thing about it all is that they were unwilling to offer any kind of a discount to my mother-in-law, who paid for the meal, even though we had guests standing out in the restaurant for 20 minutes while they reset the room for us and even though all of the specifications she had laid out were completely forgotten. She contacted the owner, Ron Popp, about a week later to express her frustration, and he basically blew off her complaints and offered NOTHING in compensation--after this major problem, she still had to pay full price!!! The servers at Wheatfields did everything they could to make things right, but no one was held responsible for the error in scheduling that threw off our dinner. Although I have always enjoyed the food at Wheatfields, I am too angry to go back after this episode.
I wore my mother's wedding dress, which two of my aunts also wore since then, and it needed to be cleaned before the big day. After calling a bunch of places around Omaha, I found that Armstrong was the least expensive for cleaning, steaming, and pressing a wedding dress. There was one preexisting stain that didn't come out, although I forgot to point it out to them, so I don't hold that against them at all. I plan to go back to have it cleaned and preserved, and overall am happy with their service.
After shopping around for tuxes, we ended up deciding that Men's Warehouse was the least hassle for a decent price. We had groomsmen in Omaha, Denver, Lawrence, Council Bluffs, and St. Louis, and they were all able to get measured in their respective cities. It was also nice to be able to return the tuxes to any location of Men's Warehouse. Make sure you try on your tux before you leave the shop because several of the guys had issues that had to be fixed (too small vest, wrong length of pant leg, etc.), but these problems were remedied quickly and without much hassle.
The chef, Arturo, is amazing and did everything possible to create a menu that was perfect for our wedding. The food was delicious, and the servers were wonderful. They did a beautiful job of decorating the tables, and I didn't have to worry about a thing during the dinner. I highly recommend them!
Although our wedding was at a different church, we held our reception at SJV. It is a beautiful hall, the manager and maintenance staff are helpful, and they provide bartenders and security for the cost of the hall. We had about 160 people for our wedding, but I think they may seat up to 300 (not positive about that). There's a large dance floor, too, so we loved that! I definitely recommend this hall.
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