The Toronto edition of the Canadian Special Events Show took place two weeks ago and I spent two exhilarating days in Special Event and Wedding Planning Seminars and hob-nobbing with the top event and wedding specialists in Canada and the U.S.!
Check out the picture! Yes it’s me with – who else – Jane Dayus-Hinch of the popular TV series: Wedding S.O.S. It was such a pleasure meeting Jane! She is one very cool lady and while I always thought she came across as very prim and proper on the show, well she is truly down to earth and a funky chick! Ever present in her ladylike outfits, hats and high heels…. she is a Harley-Davidson owner and rider so has a definite “wild side”! It was really fascinating listening to her experiences – how she came to be a top wedding planner and some of the hair raising experiences she has had as a wedding planner. One of the best stories she told was about the groom that didn’t show up. That was one thing that she wasn’t able to fix.
It was twenty minutes before the ceremony was scheduled to start and Jane was wondering “where are the boys?” The groom and the groomsmen had not yet shown up. Finally two groomsmen ran up and she said to them “where’s the groom?” – they said “He’s not coming!” She said “What do you mean he’s not coming – not coming yet?” “No” they said “He’s NOT COMING!” “Well, where is he” she said? “He’s down the road at the pub.” “Show me where?” Off they raced, Jane in her high heels, to the pub two blocks away from the church.
Now, Jane had never met the groom. All the wedding planning meetings were with the bride and her mother, which did seem a bit odd in retrospect. Whenever Jane asked what the groom would think they would reply “Oh he doesn’t care. It will be a surprise.” At any rate, Jane introduced herself to the groom and said “Is there a problem?” He said “I’m not coming.” She said “What do you mean you’re not coming?” He said “I’m NOT coming!” She looked at the groomsmen for support, but they just shrugged and make the “knife across the neck” gesture. She said to the groom “Is there anything I can do? Why aren’t you coming?”
He said “Well I had absolutely no say whatsoever about this wedding. Whenever I asked about anything, I was told, never mind, it’s a surprise. I asked about the menu and was told, it’s a surprise. I asked about the reception and told, never mind, we’ve handled everything, it’s a surprise. They even chose my tuxedo for me. So I have decided that I am not coming. ITS A SURPRISE!”
Realizing that he was not going to change his mind, Jane told the groomsmen to get back over to the church and head off the bride. “Whatever you do, don’t let her get out of the car. Make something up, have them drive around the block a few times, but don’t let her out of the car.”
Jane set about to try to reason with the groom, but he was adamant. He wasn’t coming! (Oh great! I guess it was now going to fall to Jane to break the news to the bride!) Jane raced back to the church just as the car pulled up again and the bride was about to step out of the car, when she said “you can’t get out of the car…the wedding is off”! It was one of the worst moments of Jane’s wedding planning career! Of course the bride was in tears, what a mess, and Jane said to her father “please, just get her away from here, take her back home!”
At that moment, the minister came out from the church and said “What’s going on?” Jane told him “The wedding is off”. He said, well, are you going to make the announcement to the guests who are waiting in the church?” She smiled at him and said “No Reverend, I’m sorry but the church is your department – you’ll have to tell them!”
Of course at this point everything is organized and paid for so what happened? Well the guests went to the banquet hall and ate the wedding dinner, but she said you could only hear cutlery scratching the plates – no conversation!!
Well, I can tell you that I certainly hope I will never have a situation like this at any of the weddings I am helping to plan!
Anyway, it was an absolute delight to get to know Jane and hear her wealth of experiences! Next blog I will fill you in on all the exciting trends for weddings this year from experts like Marcy Blum (event planner for the Rockefellers and high society clients) and David Beahm (wedding planner for Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, plus other celebrities).
My special wish to you: Happy wedding planning to all you brides, and may your grooms show up!