Randy Lehrman is the owner of Real Genius Entertainment, a special events company that specializes in Jewish life cycle events, making every event unique and different while paying close attention to detail and a high level of personal service. With 20 years of experience, Randy uses his personality to drive the party. He also will help you with lighting design, music selections, room layout, and making your wedding exactly how you want it. Real Genius Entertainment is located in West Hills, California and is available for all your party needs!

In this crazy world of wedding event planning, I tell people all the time that these things have become mini-productions. I envision future weddings to be produced like the Oscars or Grammys with staff using walkie talkies and guests giving red carpet interviews. Okay, so I’m kidding, but only a little. The truth is, so many experts go into helping you achieve your dreams of your wedding day and everyone gets to be star of the day at some point. You’ve trusted some of the best pros in the biz to join you on your wedding day –DJs, entertainers, videographer, photographer, florists, caterers — but, there are two more people that are the true celebrities of your special day: You!

For the most part, as an entertainer, I drive a party to its success with the bride and groom as part of my team to deliver the most amazing event it can be. So believe it or not, there are actually many things you can do to make your own wedding even better. It’s really the difference between good and optimal. Follow this Top 10 List and you might float to your honeymoon on Cloud 9!

#1. Dance! That’s right. Even if you and your spouse are as stiff as boards you need to dance and participate on the dance floor. Why did you hire an awesome DJ for your event? To get people dancing all night! But, if you and your new partner are at the bar all night or yapping outside, how do you expect everyone else to get out there? Lead by example. You are the hosts. Monkey see, monkey do. And you guys are the two best dressed monkeys there!

#2. Know when to schmooze! With only a certain amount of time to visit and thank all of your guests, you usually rush around like little bees to thank them, which is very kind of you. But doing it at the right time can be a scheduling nightmare in itself. So my advice to you is to make sure you eat first (you get fed first anyways) and then there is time go chat and thank. You might also have schmooze opportunities at cocktail hour, salad, dinner, and cake cutting to say thanks! And remember, some of your best conversations might be on the dance floor!

#3. Work with your DJ! Don’t be your own! Of course you want your favorite music at your party. Many brides and grooms are focused on their taste in music instead of thinking of dance music. Use the expertise of your DJ to pick music for dancing. If something you like doesn’t work for the dance floor, it shouldn’t be a problem. Utilize it instead as background music during the meal, or as people enter the party. Green Day isn’t going to fill a floor no matter how much you like it.

#4. Don’t play your montage during dinner. Ninety-nine percent of all weddings are four to five hours long. If you are showcasing pictures of the two of you, the worst thing you can do is play it while your 200 guests are cutting chicken. Allow dinner time to be a time to relax and socialize. Set up the slideshow during dinner and after all the plates have been cleared, voila! It’s showtime! It will ensure you have all of your guests’ attention on something that is very special to you.

#5. More sugar! Have a secondary dessert if you can. The longest lull in the party is when the caterer is slicing cake for each and every one of your guests. I suggest having a candy or extra dessert table. That way after you’ve cut the cake, you can send your guests to that goodie table to nosh, and by the time they get back to their table there’s cake there, too!

#6. Bring money! Even if you leave cash or a check with your coordinator, you never want to run out of green. Many DJs require overtime payment on the spot so if you want to keep dancing the night away, have your coordinator take care of that for you. There is literally one instance at every party where you will need some kind of money for someone, whether it’s a tip or overtime. Count on not needing to pay up, but be prepared just in case, and make it easy on yourself.

#7. Beware of offsite photos. Out of the 20+ years of weddings I have worked, one thing has remained constant: when a photographer requests to take the bride and groom off-site for photos, the couple never returns on time. Try to avoid doing this at all costs because guests have already been there a long time and when your doors open they expect to see you introduced within fifteen minutes. If you aren’t at the beginning of your own party it will be uncomfortable for everyone there. We cant start without you, right? You can also schedule a photo shoot with your photographer where you get all dolled up again and take photos at a cool location or favorite spot. Bottomline, take as many photos as you can before the ceremony or the reception. You will be glad you aren’t late to your own party!

#8. Eat! You should get your plates before other guests, so take advantage of this and eat. This is a long and special weekend. You need lots of energy while dancing, chatting, and just meeting new family. Eat and drink water to keep yourself going. The number of times I’ve seen a bride or groom not eat before or during an event? Six. The number of times one of those people has fainted or thrown up? Six. Do the math.

#9. Inform your special VIP guests. All too often there is a mother-son dance where mom is floating at the bar, or there’s the emotional cousin who has just been asked to — surprise! — give a toast and had no idea. Tell your toasters, tell your dance partners, tell the people who are doing the motzi over the challah. Tell all your VIPs that you are honoring them with a special duty and then they’ll be prepared and excited about what they are doing.

#10. Have fun! If you have fun at your own party everyone else will, too! Don’t sweat the small stuff at your wedding reception. All too often, brides become upset over just one song they might not particularly like and and then not even realize that the dance floor is packed. Trust your DJ, smile, take pictures, kiss your new partner, and enjoy the best day of your life.

Tom Nicholls Photography

Tom Nicholls Photography

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