Wedding Questions

Completely new to this and would love ANY advice!!

Posted in Calgary, AB, Canada
Emptyprofileicon Jennifer Martinot Calgary, AB, Canada


My name is Jennifer and I just got engaged last week. I am looking to plan my wedding for anytime in 2016 between April-October in Calgary, for about 160 people.

We are trying to keep everything under $10,00 (if possible). After hearing back from many venues, it seems like the best route for us to take is to rent a hall and decorate ourselves. So far we've narrowed it down to Varsity Community Hall or the Polish Canadian Cultural Center. Has anyone used these locations? And if so, could you please tell me anything and everything about your experience?

There seems to be a million pieces of information out there, and Pinterest is proving to be an evil temptress, so if any of you could give me any advice to calm down and figure this out, I would be incredibly grateful!

Thank you so much,


8 Replies

Emptyprofileicon Kristen Buhler Calgary, AB, Canada

Hi Jennifer! I had mine at Varsity, so did my mom and one of my coworkers. In my opinion it was the BEST place to have your reception. The staff are so nice! The food is decent especially for the price and the venue can be decorated however you want! For my wedding I ordered chiavari chairs because it was something I thought was worth the money; and it was!! My mom just used their chairs and it was still really nice. My dj had lights that he put behind the head table which made it even nicer!! I would totally recommend Varsity! Gord was awesome too and I was a bit of a bridezilla and I asked him 100 questions which he answered quickly and always happily. Hahahaha let me know if you have sing other questions!!


Emptyprofileicon Kristen Buhler Calgary, AB, Canada



Emptyprofileicon Jennifer Martinot Calgary, AB, Canada


Thank you SO much for that!! That eases my mind so much, thank you! Honestly, I would love to hear more about your experience, if you don't mind?

Such as, were you able to decorate before hand, and were they able to help you with set up/take down? Also, did you have to order the special chairs that you wanted, or was Varsity able to provide them for you? And just a side note, who was your DJ?

I'm sorry if this is too much, but you just made me so excited haha. Thank you again for easing my mind!



Emptyprofileicon Kristen Buhler Calgary, AB, Canada

I had to order the chairs from chiavari chair rentals. My dj was Fun Factory (Richard) he's the owner/the BEST!! We here able to set up that morning - so 2 of my girlfriends went ahead and did it for me. Sometimes you can go in the night before - it just depends on if the hall is being used. Unfortunately for us - it was being used the night before our wedding. The staff don't help with set up or take down but family/friends - I'm sure - will take care of that for you! The chair company takes care of the chairs though! It was seamless!
Haha and no worries! It's super exciting to plan and Pinterest can be your best fries and worst enemy. Lol ask anything! I'll try to help out as much as possible!!


Emptyprofileicon Jennifer Martinot Calgary, AB, Canada

You are officially my favourite person ever right now haha. Thank you for all of your help!!

Could you possibly please tell me more about the food there? And how was the space for your dinner then dance? Honestly, I would just love to hear anything and everything about your wedding to know how it all worked out for you! I know next to nothing at this point so would greatly appreciate any advice/words of wisdom-if you're up to it!

Thank you again, I am SO grateful!


Emptyprofileicon Kristen Buhler Calgary, AB, Canada

We had the pesto chicken. My mom had the turkey with the beef. Both were really good. I mean, it's not the BEST meal that you've ever had but it's good. You'd expect it to cost more because it is good. But it's just nothing faaaancy if that makes sense...? The dance floor was huge. We had 100 ppl at our wedding - there was a ton of room!! It's honestly such a great place. The floors are nice and you can make it look super modern.
Email me direct if u have any other questions. Try to find pics for you.
[email protected]


Emptyprofileicon Laura Carnegie Calgary, AB, Canada

Hi Jennifer,

I have not used either of those venues, but since you also asked for general advice I can help with that. I know it seems overwhelming, but I would say first off let me say this should be fun, so don't let it stress you out and be flexible because not everything will go as planned. Just enjoy the whole engagement thing. I'll give you a few planning tips that I wish I had known earlier in my engagement.

Firstly, make a list of wants, and needs, then rank the "needs" and focus on those first. Breaking it up into urgent, important but not urgent, important, and just "wants" will help you stay focused and give you feelings of accomplishment along the way.
Look at dresses soon because it takes months and months for them to get your dress in. I thought 4 months was plenty but that is considered a rush order, unless you can fit off-the-rack.
Online budget template spreadsheets are helpful, and are a good way to track how much you have spent.
The knot has a great to do list, the knot and other websites have a free personalized wedding website that you can use for RSVPs, map, all info that would go on your invitations (I'm sending out invites as well as having a website, but on your budget it will save you money.)
Don't go with the cheapest photographer or DJ. The better DJ at top of your budget will make the party way more fun than the crappy DJ, and the crappy photographer could accidentally forget to charge her camera battery or miss key moments you want them to capture. Also, don't pay the photographer for prints and an album, Costco is just as good, but way cheaper.
Kijiji is a great source for decor and rentals, for example, I will be renting out my centre pieces, arch, bird cage for cards, signs, etc. on kijiji after my wedding.

Congratulations!! Best of luck!


Emptyprofileicon Jennifer Martinot Calgary, AB, Canada


Thank you SO much for all of that! I have been stressing over the whole thing being perfect, but you explaining how to break it down and enjoy the moment really is an eye opener to me-and was also very calming :) I had no idea about the dress taking that long, or that there were so many online resources! I really appreciate all of your advice, thank you for all of that!

Best of luck with your wedding as well, and thanks again!


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