Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Event Coordinator = MORE Than Just Weddings

Being a wedding coordinator at the Lake of the Ozarks is one of the most awesome jobs that I could ask for, but I really love being a Lake of the Ozarks event planner for all kinds of celebrations besides weddings too.  

Brides and grooms seem to be the first people to give me a call and ask for help.  A simple birthday party or family reunion might seem like a simple party to take on yourself, but I have the experience to avoid easily made mistakes, the knowledge of the best activity and theme ideas, and the expertise of having done this quite a few times.  

If you are planning a wedding, definitely contact Events DEE-signed to make the entire process easier on you.  I LOVE helping with weddings.  I also LOVE helping with these types of events too. 


  • For the young
Children's birthdays may be my absolute favorite event to coordinate.  They love it when you go way over the top with the theme and are usually up for trying anything, as long as it looks like it's going to be fun.  I am not embarrassed to admit that I love comic books and Disney, so most kid's themes are right up my alley.  Children love to play and, even better, they love to laugh.  Laughing is infectious, and the smile on my face after hearing a bunch of children laughing for a couple of hours straight makes my whole day.  And the best part... I get to get them all riled up and then send them home with their parents. (Hee-hee!!)

  • For the young-at-heart

As long as you're alive, you never stop having birthdays.  I truly believe that you can make a big fuss over it, no matter what your age is.  I also believe that there is no reason why a "grown-up" can't have some cheesy, themed party just like a kid.  Don't worry, though, if you are not quite as dorky as I am.  I am perfectly capable of throwing a sophisticated bash too, that will be just as much fun.

Baby Showers

Celebrating a new baby coming into the world is always special, and the Mom-to-be deserves a little extra-special attention before the little one arrives.  After that, it may be quite a while before she gets to be the center of attention again!!  There really are ways to throw a baby shower that isn't all cheesy and full of stupid games that no one really wants to play.  The key is to do activities that are fun for Mom and her particular group of friends.  My personal favorites are the co-ed showers, because the Dad-to-be needs a little attention too.  My co-ed showers have always been great successes, and the guys had just as much fun as the gals.  I would LOVE to throw a gender-reveal party, but so far everyone that I know spills the beans before I can talk them into it.  

Bridal Showers

Just like the baby showers above, these don't have to be the cheesy parties of the past, full of games that no one really wants to play.  There really is no rule to what these have to be, except that they should be all about the Bride-to-be.  Unless, of course, you opt for a co-ed shower.  Brides often get multiple showers thrown by various friends and family members, and if she and her fiance have a lot of mutual friends, there is no reason why one of the showers cannot honor them both.


Usually my assistance is only needed for the big number anniversaries, when people decide to throw a large celebration with lots of people invited.  It's no problem for me to help with a smaller one too, even if it's as simple as making some reservations or preparing a special surprise. 


Family reunions, class reunions, band reunions... there are as many types of reunions possible as there are groups of people that gather all over the world.  The assistance needed for a reunion can include tracking people down, collection RSVPs, finding a venue, making name tags, organizing itineraries, etc...

Bachelor & Bachelorette Parties

These - are- FUN!!  The first thing that comes to people's minds for these is usually something wild and crazy, and yes, that happens sometimes and those are awesome.  It doesn't have to be like that though.  As with most of the events that I help to plan, the style of the party should match the likes and wants of the person being honored.  You can bar-hop all night, spend the day at a spa, spend a day on the golf course, or whatever the bride or groom have fun doing with their closest friends.  Some couples even enjoy planning their bashes for the same night, and ending the evening at one giant party that joins together both groups.

Girls'/Guys' Night Out

These are pretty much Bachelorette & Bachelor parties without a person of honor getting married.  Just a bunch of friends going out for a special night to look for an adventure together.  I love coming up with an adventure for people to seek out.

Whatever You Feel Like Celebrating!!

Life should be a series of celebrations.  It doesn't have to be a special occasion to get a few friends together and have a good time.  I highly encourage everyone to incorporate a little more fun into their everyday lives.  Start celebrating "Champagne Tuesday" (or Wednesday, or...)  Have a monthly game night with friends or a traveling potluck dinner.  The ideas are endless, but if you need a little help coming up with some, give this Lake of the Ozarks event planner a call, or follow my blogs and posts for inspiration.  


I'll plan, so you can party!!

Visit me at

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Why Is June Associated With Getting Married?

Out of the twelve months of the year, generally when someone hears June, weddings spring to mind.  My experience as a wedding coordinator at the Lake of the Ozarks has seen quite a few still taking place in June, but just as many in May.  Besides that, September and October have turned into peak months to tie the knot too.  So why the link to the month of June?  Well, I wondered, so I did some research, and this is what I found out.

The Roman goddess Juno is connected with all aspects of the life of women. She is known as the goddess of childbirth and the goddess of marriage.  This combined with the fact that the month of June is named after her are perfect reasons to want to be married in June. People used to believe that being married in this month would bring prosperity and happiness to the couple.    

Another reason found for brides favoring June dates way back to the times when people only bathed once a year.  After wearing heavy clothing all winter long and the weather began warming up in May people would take their "annual bath." People were anxious to get married in June because they still smelled fresher than they would for the rest of the year.  Sure makes you appreciate living in the here and now with indoor plumbing and showers!

The final reason is a very practical one.  When families relied on farming for their livelihood, having a June wedding was convenient for a possible post-wedding pregnancy not getting in the way of the wife helping with the harvest.  It would be early enough that she could still perform some manual labor, and a Spring birth meant that she would be recovered and in good enough health to help out with the next year's harvest.  

Wedding planning can be coordinated successfully any time of the year.  Lots of factors should go into the date that you end up choosing.  If you need any help deciding what will work the best for you and your family, reach out to Events DEE-signed for some guidance.  The most important factor being that it is one that you and your fiance are both cool with.  As long as the two of you are happy with the date, than that is the perfect month for you.

Photo by J.Kelley Photography

I'll plan, so you can party!!

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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Events DEE-signed's 2014 Year-In-Review

This is a blog that I really wanted to write in January, but I kept putting it off.  Getting this blog written down is very helpful for me to see how much better Events DEE-signed did booking & coordinating events & weddings from the previous year.  So instead of deciding that I missed my chance to write it, it's being done now.  Better late than never, right!?!

I still consider myself a very small business.  Event planning is still my "side job" (meaning I can't solely live off of it... yet!!), but I am steadily meeting more people, learning more helpful business habits, and increasing the number of events I coordinate each year.

In 2014, I booked 7 weddings!!  Only 6 actually happened, & one of those was just a couple of hours of assistance, but the point is that they found me and wanted to hire me!!  I also planned 2 bachelorette parties, games for a child's birthday party (a Lego themed one, fun!!), and my own daughter's college graduation party.  (Okay, so technically I didn't hire myself, but I did put a lot into it.)

-For more photos, head over to my Facebook albums.-

I was hired as the photographer for one of my weddings, and was asked to be the second shooter for Sherry Farrell Photography on 3 of hers.  Photography is something that I have always loved, and getting to take pictures with her super-nice camera was a real treat!!  That line of work is something that I could actually see myself venturing into if I take the time to learn more about my camera & some advanced shooting techniques.  I already have the eye for it, but more training never hurt anyone.  

  -My first gig as a photographer's assistant.-   
  -Sherry & I at the Wedding Market Expo
 in St. Louis.-     

This year I participated in my very first bridal show.  My local wedding association (Lake of the Ozarks Wedding Association) decided to put on our own, and I was in charge of the wonderful committee full of wedding professionals that made it a huge success.

-Lake of the Ozarks Bridal Show 2014 - Events DEE-signed booth.-
A new discovery for me, Twitter chats, turned out to be an amazing way to meet other people in the wedding industry.  Lots of great idea sharing & learning from all over the country, some even further away.  I also attended training through the Wedding Market Expo in St. Louis, MO for 2 days.  This was full of extremely useful tips for marketing Events DEE-signed, I met some really amazing & successful people in my industry, and most importantly it got me excited about sharing my business and pushing it to grow.

Well, that was my year.  Not too shabby, if I do say so myself!!  Enough to show some personal growth for my business, and plenty to build upon for 2015.  I hope that you stay tuned and watch it grow even more.  Even better, head on over to the beautiful Lake of the Ozarks this summer and let me help you throw a party!!  (wink, wink)

     "I'll plan, 
so you can party!!"

Deanna Powell
(573) 216-3422

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

** Bridal Show Survival Tips & Tricks **

It’s Bridal Show time!!  

My local show, the Lake of the Ozarks Bridal Show (#LakeBridalShow, if you hashtag) happens every February.  Well, this will only be the second February that we are hosting, but we rocked our first one, so there will be many, many more February shows to come.  I am surrounded by some pretty amazing and creative wedding pros here at the Lake.  

Unless you have been to shows as a friend of a bride in the past or work in the industry, this whole world is probably new to you.  A bridal show is a magical place where you can find someone to fulfill every aspect of your wedding planning checklist, that is, if you know how to look.  Go in blind, and you may leave more confused than you came in.  

It can be overwhelming to have so much information thrown at you all at once, not to mention all of the vendors giving you all of the reasons that they think they are the right fit for your particular wedding.  Here are a few tips and tricks to hopefully help you navigate the maze of booths and come out confident and possibly, in a perfect world, with everything booked!!  

Most importantly...

Most of the lists that I researched saved this tip for the end.  I want to begin with it, hoping that you will keep this in mind while you read.  Bring along a helpful (yet fun) friend or two, or your fiance if he fits this description, and enjoy the process.

Before the show...

Before the show, check out it's website. Look over the list of vendors, research them a little, and know who you really want to see that day. Visit those booths first, and then go up and down each aisle and check out as many more as you can. You never know when you will discover a new idea or a vendor you didn't expect to like but immediately click with. Have some quesitons ready to ask. Now is a great time to get advice from the experts, and their answers will tell you a lot aobut them. Also, look at the show schedule and know when the fashion show and other events will be going on.
You will start receiving all kinds of emails from loads of vendors once you share your information with them, which is generally required if you want to register for that awesome prize that they are giving away.  Setting up a special email account especially for these will keep your regular email address free from lots of “junk mail” after the wedding.  If there are any businesses that you would like to keep in touch with for other events in your life, be sure to give them your regular email later.   
There will be tons of cool stuff to sign up to win, but your hand will cramp up and be useless if you have to write all of your info out at every single booth.  Your labels need to include the bride’s name, groom’s name, and your wedding date.   Next be sure to add a way to get in touch with you, either email, phone number, or preferably both. If you don’t make labels, PRINT NEATLY!! If they can’t read your name or number, you may not get to accept that fancy honeymoon you could have won.

Grab a few things on your way out the door...

There will be vendors that you will want to speak with in more detail than you are able to do in a crowded room full of brides who are also wanting their attention.  Set up a future meeting right then and there.    

I know, I know, who writes checks anymore?  Well, some smaller vendors may not be able to take plastic, and when you meet a vendor that you know is without a doubt “the one,” you will want to put down a deposit and lock in your date.  The best wedding pros will book up quickly, especially venues and photographers.  A bit of pre-show research on the vendors will add confidence to any buying decisions.  

At some shows, you may need a bit of cash for extras like parking, drinks or snacks, coat check, etc…  and there isn’t always an ATM handy.

Make sure to have a pen & paper handy to write down the extra-special things that you know you will want to remember later.  You can even use your phone to snap a pic of that vendor you really liked so that you have a face to go with the name.  It also helps to jot down your impressions of a certain vendor directly on the back of their business card.  This way you know exactly what you thought of that person without having to sift through your memory of all of the people that you spoke to throughout the day.  And hey, use that helpful (yet fun) friend that you brought along with you.  They can write notes for you, fill out contest forms, and gather literature while you use your time to chat with the vendors.

You will most likely get a bag to collect literature as you enter the show, possibly a few of them.  Bring along a bag, folder, or something of your own to keep the cards and info that you know you will be needing later separate.  Toss all of the other stuff into the not-so-important bag, but don’t immediately throw it away when you get home.  It’s wise to keep the extra vendor info in case one that you plan on using doesn't work out and you need a backup, or if your budget magically grows and you can add an extra service you originally didn't plan on.        

While you are there...     

WEAR COMFY SHOES.  Sure, those brand new sparkly heels sitting in your closet have been waiting for an excuse to step out with you and your girlfriends, but today is NOT the day. Slip on those comfy tennis shoes, your pedometer, and chalk today up as a workout... with cake & wine!!  

LIMIT YOUR FOOD SAMPLE INTAKE. Sure that cake looks delicious... and that one... and oooh, the other one too…  but after you try a piece at every booth you will be too full to keep walking, and don’t forget about the inevitable sugar rush.  Bring along a water bottle,  and maybe even pack a small snack in your purse.  These things may or may not be available at the show, but a 50-cent water bottle will cost you $2-$3.

KEEP YOUR BUDGET IN MIND.  Don’t be too quick with those checkbooks!!  There will be a lot of very, VERY, good specials offered at many of the booths.  You shouldn't feel pressured to act too quickly.  If you are interested, ask if the vendor can offer you the same special if you schedule a future meeting and book at that.  

REALLY TALK TO THE VENDORS.  I see so many brides sneak a peek at a booth and then scurry quickly past before the vendor can get out a hello.  Stop, say hi, and start asking questions!!  That’s the reason you are here, and it’s the best way to find out if this person is the right fit for you.  Are they too pushy?  Simply say thank you and move on.  If you can’t get away from them, use your helpful (yet fun) friend to do this dirty work for you.  They can drag you away or jump between the two of you while you make a break for it!!    

TAKE YOUR TIME.  The show will be, at the very least, 3 or 4 hours long.  There is no need to rush quickly up and down the aisles.  Really look at the displays, hear what the pros have to say, and leave yourself time to take a break here and there to process what you are seeing.  Another time saving tip- if you have no interest in the fashion show, it’s the best time to talk to your favorite  vendors.  The bulk of the crowd will be watching the show and you will have many of the booths all to yourself.

And once again, most importantly...


If you can’t have a little fun during the planning process, then you are doing it wrong.  Sure, there will be some stress along the way, but always remember the reason this is all happening, take a deep breath, and remember to enjoy it.