Once the couple arrived, the partygoers cheered for the birthday boy, who looked genuinely surprised since he was nervous about the “other surprise.” B feigned the need to go in and collect himself, and J followed as the dutiful girlfriend.
Then the fun began. We pulled bouquets out of stashed coolers, lined an aisle with petals and released the Justice of the Peace from his hiding place. The rest is a blur of happy tears, giddy grandparents, and lots of gasps of surprise and joy.
In hindsight, it probably was one of the most challenging events to pull off. But the couple’s concern to make guests feel comfortable made everything seem easy. That concern for guest comfort stays with me today. While every event has “guests of honour,” as with a bride and groom, or birthday celebrant, each and every person at the event is important as well. We strive to make sure we think globally about events. What creature comforts can we build into an event that will make someone’s life just a little easier? Sometimes it is setting a tent closer to the driveway for an elderly grandparent, or providing a basket of flip-flops or shawls for guests to borrow.
Our planning for future events will always focus on the guest experience, and trying to create a unique and inviting atmosphere for everyone, like being a guest at a good friend’s house for dinner. We always pack blankets, shawls and flip-flops into a “tool” kit. Oh, and there just may be a beautiful meandering wagon ride out to a picturesque hayfield.
Reminds me of an amazing wedding, just 9 years ago.