Wedding Ceremony Location Checklist – San Antonio Wedding Coordinator

IMG_3011 webP161In San Antonio, there are beautiful churches, cathedrals and missions plus beautiful outdoor locations at venues, the Riverwalk and even hotels and resorts. So many options! With that comes rules and guidelines, classes, and fees that you have to consider when choosing your location. As a coordinator, I want to be there to help with the ceremony set up, pinning of boutonnieres, passing out flowers, helping the bridal party and family, lining up and queuing. However, some churches are more strict than others and do not allow coordinators there. San Fernando Cathedral is one of those locations. It was founded in 1731 and is the oldest, continuously functioning religious community in the State of Texas. They have a lot of guidelines to follow in order to be married there. This is something you need to consider when choosing your ceremony location.

Lets talk about having an indoor vs outdoor wedding ceremony. The two can be very different so you need to consider each differently. Here are some questions to ask the venue or the church event coordinator before booking.


Photo by Ara Photography

Inside Ceremonies

  • What time is the wedding party allowed to enter the church/venue prior to the ceremony?
  • Is there a bridal room for the bride and bridal party to get ready in?
  • Is there a room for the men to go to?
  • Does the bridal room have a mirror and access to a bathroom?
  • What are the policies for floral décor?
  • For churches, do we have to leave the altar flowers or can we take them after the ceremony?
  • What are the rules for hanging pew markers?
  • Are we allowed to use an aisle runner and if so, how can we tack it down?
  • Where will the musicians be located and will they be able to see the aisle well?
  • For churches, do we have to use your musicians or can we bring in our own? What kind of music do you allow and not? Is there an additional fee for your musicians?
  • Does the venue/church allow for photography and videography? What are the rules they must follow (flash, standing, etc.)?
  • Are guests permitted to take pictures?
  • In the church, are there places that the ushers should not sit anyone?
  • Where will the wedding party line up and enter from?
  • Are there policies that need to be listed in the program for guests to be aware of (e.g. no photography, dress attire, etc.)?
  • Is a rehearsal included? Will the pastor be there for it or the event coordinator?
  • For churches, what paperwork is required? Any classes?
  • Are flower petals allowed? What can be thrown afterwards outside?
  • What is the fees and deposit amounts?
  • Are outside wedding coordinators allowed?

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 Outdoor Ceremonies

(Lets assume that all outdoor ceremonies will be at a venue/hotel/resort)

  • What time will the venue be available prior to the ceremony?
  • Is there a separate holding area for both the bride and groom and the wedding party?
  • Does the bridal room have a mirror and access to a bathroom?
  • What are your rules for decorating the aisle and ceremony location? Petals allowed?
  • How is the seating normally arranged?
  • Do you provide chairs? Arch? Anything else?
  • Think about your guest’s and which direction the sun will be facing at that time of day. Is there shade? Water station allowed? Will it be hot or cold?
  • Do we need a microphone and speakers to project the officiant, bride and groom and readers? Is there power nearby for this?
  • Do you need a podium for readers or officiant?
  • Do you need a table for the unity candle or other items?
  • Where will the musicians be located at and will they be able to see the aisle?
  • Where will the wedding party line up and enter from?
  • What is the Plan B for rain?
  • Is a rehearsal included or extra fee or can’t do at all?
  • What are the fees?
  • Can we bring in our own wedding coordinator?

On the day of the wedding, if you haven’t hired a wedding coordinator (which is what I recommend), put a special friend or family member in charge of making sure the programs, reserved signs and accessories such as the unity candle make it to the church or venue on time. Be sure the readers have copies of their readings with them and that a copy of the readings is also given to the officiant. You’ll need to instruct the ushers what their duties are, pin on boutonnieres and pass out corsages and bouquets, and check on the bride to make sure she doesn’t need anything. As a San Antonio coordinator, I bring a wedding day emergency kit that has a little bit of everything for needs that might come up.

If I can assist with your ceremony or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I am a professional wedding consultant in San Antonio, Texas. 210-595-9263, Please go to my website to learn more about my services. I not only have coordination services but invitation and honeymoon as well.

The Wedding Party- Who to choose and what to wear? – San Antonio Wedding Coordinator

bridal_party_laughingPhoto provided by Mint Photography

One of the first things you’ll probably think of after getting engaged is who you’re going to ask to be a bridesmaid and groomsmen, right? It can be hard to narrow down your selection. You don’t want to hurt feelings. You think about who can afford to be in my wedding. Who is the closest to me? These were all questions I thought of because I had been in several friend’s weddings prior to my own wedding but knew that I wouldn’t be able to have them in mine just for the fact of I felt like I had too many already for the size of my wedding & the cost of it. If I had it my way I would have had 10-11 girls but kept it at 7. I couldn’t even narrow down a maid or matron of honor so I ended up with one of each!

What if there are more guys or girls on one side? That is perfectly fine! As a coordinator in San Antonio, I have seen this happen time and again. The simple way of making it work is having 2 groomsmen walking with 1 girl for the recessional, for example. That’s all! No harm.

Before asking any of your wedding party you need to first sit down with your fiancé and decide on how large you want the wedding party to be. If you want a small intimate wedding then having 7-8 each would be too many. Also, it is important that you pick a church/ceremony location that will be large enough for your wedding party to either stand at the altar or sit down in the front row. I’ve done some ceremonies where we had to have 2 rows on either side because their were 10+ each.

Get creative with the way in which you ask. Wouldn’t it be fun to hand deliver a small gift with an invitation inviting them to partake in your wedding. How fun! If you had an engagement party you could ask them while there and/or announce to everyone who they were.

Your Responsibility

IMG_6788Even though you are not responsible for paying for the wedding party attire you still need to keep in mind other expenses that are involved.

  • Their Bouquet/Boutonnierre
  • Their dinner at the rehearsal and reception and possibly for their guest
  • Their wedding party gift
  • Transportation Expenses to the reception

Some couples, as a nice gesture, might even pay a portion of the attire cost or provide the shoes or piece of jewelry for it.

The Attire

This brings us to the attire. You will want to research styles of current trends both online and in stores. I recommend looking online first and if you see a dress you really like (and the bridesmaids like) then call around to different stores in your area and see if they carry it or something very similar. That will save a lot of time. Please limit how many girls go with you to look at dresses. Everyone has different ideas as to what looks best on them. You will never get all the girls to agree on 1 dress. If your maid of honor likes it and a couple of others that go with you….note that dress as a good possibility. It will be your final decision to make, not theirs.


The maid/matron of honor doesn’t have to wear the same dress or color as the others. I see this a lot. What about having all the girls in a different shade of pastels or have a few dress options in the same color? How about everyone picking our their own black dress, you decide on length, for an evening wedding? In a past wedding I was in she did that and it worked out great! That way all body types will look good in something. I currently have a bride that really wanted a floral design on her dresses but couldn’t find anything so she is having a seamstress make her dress. I’ve been in weddings in the past where this happened. I remember even renting my dress at a wedding I was in. This would be a great affordable way for the girls. You know how the saying goes, you wear it once and never wear it again…it is true! I’ve been in 7 weddings and never wore my dress again.


IMG_7505For the groomsmen, decide on how formal you are wanting to go. I’ve seen a lot of styles with the guys too. Everything from pants with white shirts and suspenders to the tux. Suits are a very common choice right now and a lot of couples are choosing this option for the men. Bow ties are coming back and at my most recent wedding the groom looked so cute with his bow tie on! Have fun with the attire!! Make a statement!

Bella Bridesmaids and Debi’s Bridal, both of San Antonio, are great places for getting bridesmaid’s dresses. If you need some guidance on how to choose your wedding party or have any other questions about coordinating please contact me. I would love to help you! Trudy Scott, Royalty Events Planning, 210-595-9263 or

Should I use videography for my wedding? – San Antonio Wedding Coordinator

I just received a beautifully done highlights video from Christian Ellis Images and decided to use this blog to talk about your videography for your wedding this week. This video is of a couple I helped coordinate their wedding for at Spinelli’s in Comfort, Texas. Lets watch the video first and then talk more about this important topic for your wedding. Click on the picture to be taken to their highlights video.


  Click on photo for highlights video

How important is videography for you? As a coordinator, I see it vary from couple to couple. Some MUST have it while others just don’t care. I think that it should be an important part of your wedding. What is nice is that the videographer can create a 4-7 minute highlight video so you don’t have to fast forward through all the raw footage. You can then share this short video to all your friends and family. What a great way of remembering your wedding with these videos!

I have to tell you a funny story about my own wedding (years before I was a coordinator). I just didn’t have it in my budget to hire a professional videographer so we had “Uncle xyz” film it with his camera. I don’t even know where to begin. The camera moved constantly, he would zoom in and out all the time, you couldn’t hear anything and he videoed so much pre-stuff that his camera went dead after the ceremony!!! I got 30 seconds of my reception. I was a little upset about this. Plus what he got isn’t good at all, sorry Uncle xyz (I changed the name to protect his identity, lol).

There are different styles of videographers in San Antonio that each have there own unique look and feel to their videos. There are the crisp, modern feel, the romantic & dramatic ones (like above), and the movie-like ones as in the one above plus the following. Crissman Videography is a videographer that my couples have used numerous times and his work is spectacular. He is always trying to improve himself and is currently working on ariel shots through a drone he just purchased. That is pretty cool! Here is a highlights video he did at a wedding I coordinated at the La Orilla Ballroom.

During the interview process be sure to ask the videographer these important questions:

  1. What do your packages consist of?
  2. Do I need you before the ceremony? (if you want a little of the both of you getting ready then, “yes”.)
  3. Do you have some videos I can see? (be sure to watch some of these before signing a contract)
  4. Do you do any special effects in your highlights video?
  5. What sets you apart from other videographers?
  6. What is your deposit? When is payment due?
  7. Will you have more than 1 camera person?
  8. What do you wear? (some are more casual than others so you’ll want to be aware of this especially if it is a formal event).
  9. How long will it take to get the video back?
  10. Will I have the rights to send it to whoever I like?
  11. What if I decide the day of that I want you to stay longer than originally agreed upon?
  12. Can I choose the song for the highlights video?
  13. Will I get all the raw footage that you shoot?
  14. Will you use mics for the ceremony?
  15. Can we have guests come up to you and say something to us for the video?

It is important to ask the potential videographer all these questions because each one has their own rules, packages and timeframes for doing everything. I encourage you to try and budget for a videographer so you will always have the special moments of your wedding you can reflect on in the years to come. As a coordinator, my job is to…

Create Memories For a Lifetime

Creating Fun

I am in the San Antonio area if you need help planning your wedding. Please contact me! Trudy Scott, Royalty Events Planning, 210-595-9263 or

Choosing the ideal music for your wedding – San Antonio Wedding Coordinator

Arranging for the best kind of music at your wedding will really set a tone, entertain your guests, and keep your dance floor filled throughout the event. You’ll need to arrange for music in different areas of your wedding…the ceremony and reception (cocktail hour, dinner and after dinner). Your budget will be a deciding factor as to how many and what kind of music you will have throughout the events of the wedding. Every couple wants a fun and entertaining reception. I recommend a lot of your budget be set aside for your music and entertainment. Let’s break it down…..



At my wedding, I had an outdoor ceremony and knew I wanted a trio of strings to play. I was on a budget and knew it would probably be ok to only have 3 play vs the typical quartet. It worked out just fine. The more popular musicians are going to cost you a little more but you know you’re going to get a really good group that is reliable, professional and sounds great. One way to save on this is to contact the music department of local colleges and see if there are students that play on the side. I can guarantee you they will be cheaper but you are chancing the quality and reliability. If you are getting married at a church look into their organist. This might be included in their ceremony services at no charge. Guitarists are another great idea for a different style of music you want played. Something that is done a lot in San Antonio is Mariachi bands. Mariachis really make a statement and is entertaining for sure. I had a couple that got married in very old cathedral with a very traditional Catholic ceremony but really wanted the Mariachis to play there for an even more authentic Mexican feel. It was spectacular! The easiest and most popular way of having the music for the ceremony is through the DJ. They can usually set up an extra speaker and create a song list just for the ceremony.

I have seen many of my couples extend the guitarist, strings and Mariachi bands into the cocktail hour as well.

Cocktail Hour


You can usually get a good rate by extending out the music from the ceremony into the cocktail hour. You’ll want background music played typically during this timeframe while the family and couple are taking pictures. Mariachi bands are entertaining so a lot of times the band will play half way through the cocktail hour and part of dinner so the couple can enjoy them as well. One hour is a good timeframe for them to play. I have seen jazz bands & guitarists hired just for the cocktail hour as well. Having the DJ play background music is the simplest and probably cheapest way. Even better is using an ipod.

Music during dinner

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Dinner usually takes anywhere from 40 minutes to 1 hour depending on how many guests are at the wedding. As a coordinator, I always tell my couples how important it is to greet your guests. All of the guests came from all over just to attend your wedding. It would be disrespectful by not saying, “Thank you.” I usually advise the couple to eat quickly and then use the dinnertime to greet the guests. With that being said, you would not want your band or DJ to start playing loud dance music during dinner. You could have them play some soft background music or even set up an ipod with your play list. Some venues even have their own surround sound system and you might be able to use theirs. I do not recommend having the mariachis play for the entirety of dinner as they are very loud and they might start to annoy the guests after a while. Keep it simple during dinner.

Music after dinner

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Now the fun starts! Dinner is done and let the dancing begin. Again, depending on your budget you will want to either hire a DJ or a band. Popular local bands can easily cost up to $6,000-$8,000 so make sure you budget well for this. You’ll want a band that has a repertoires that span all kinds of music for all types of guests. Guests really love the live bands and I have never seen a wedding where no one danced with a live band. I always see it opposite of that. The right DJ is so important. Your wedding coordinator can advise you of the best ones so be sure to really take her advice. You want a DJ that has the experience, is professional, fun and reliable. I recently coordinated a wedding and I must say that this DJ I worked with really got the guests on their feet. Everyone was dancing and had the best time!

A few DJ’s that I recommend in the San Antonio area are DJ For Hire, Cutting Edge Entertainment, and 5150 Productions.

The DJ can make or break an event so be sure to interview them and ask these questions:

  1. How many years experience do you have being a DJ?
  2. How many events have you DJ’d?
  3. Do you have a video or recording your can share with us?
  4. What will you be wearing?
  5. How do you charge (hourly, the event)?
  6. What is the additional cost for an extra hour?
  7. do you take breaks?
  8. Will you emcee during the reception?
  9. Will you put together a timeline (if you do not have a coordinator)?
  10. Will you play requests?
  11. What does your packages include (lights, uplighting, gobo, etc.)?
  12. What is the deposit?
  13. When is payment due?
  14. How long will it take you to set up?
  15. What do you need for the set up (table, chair, linen, electrical outlet)?
  16. Will you play outside?
  17. Do you have an extra speaker for the ceremony location? If so, is it an extra charge?
  18. Do you provide a lapel mic?
  19. Do you have references and testimonials?

If you need help planning your wedding please contact Trudy Scott at 210-595-9263 or Please go “like” my FB page to keep up with events, tips, pictures and blogs of mine. I am here to help!

How To Choose The Perfect Wedding Cake – San Antonio Wedding Planner

I think all wedding guests look forward to one thing the most….the wedding cake! Yummy!!! I am finding that it isn’t as simple as it was when I chose my wedding cake years ago. It was 1 flavor, Italian Cream. Now the couples are choosing a different flavor combination for each tier. In this blog, I will give you tips on coming up with creative cakes as well as budgeting for them.


One of my favorite appointments I go to with my couples is the cake tasting. The bakery will offer you a few flavors of cakes and then several options for the filling. The flavor combinations are endless! Just this past week I went to Betty Jane’s Bakeshoppe with one of my couples and they chose a different flavor for each of their 5 tiers plus another flavor for the groom’s cake. Lets see if I can remember some of them…chocolate with raspberry, vanilla with strawberry and pudding, red velvet with pina colada, german chocolate and chocolate with chocolate mouse.



The other part to the appointment is choosing what you want your cake to look like. Most bakeries will have pictures of previous cakes they have designed. If you don’t come in with an idea then looking at these pictures will normally help. Also, think about the theme, colors and small touches you are incorporating into your  wedding. You can incorporate those into the cake. For example, if your wedding dress is very lacey maybe use a lace look to one of the tiers. I have a couple where sunflowers are the main flower for the wedding and she will have sunflowers cascading down the side of her cake. One my couples had a Gatsby Inspired themed wedding and the design used on the cake defined that era perfectly! Just keep in mind that the more detailed the cake is, the more it will cost to make.



The cake above matched the bottom part of this bride’s dress

A few tips to save some money would be to choose a very simple cake and smaller than what you need. Then use a sheet cake and cut it in the back and bring out. This is what I did for my wedding and it worked great. Another would be to create the bigger cake but have a  couple of the tiers be Styrofoam and then use the sheet cake again. Fondant can be pricier so stick with buttercream. Just be careful that it is placed in a cool place and not delivered too early in the day. It needs to be refrigerated as long as possible so it doesn’t fall apart. I recently coordinated a wedding and just before the cake cutting I noticed that several of the roses the baker placed on the cake had fallen off. Luckily, I caught that before the couple saw it so it looked great for the cake cutting. Some bakers charge extra for certain flavors so stick with the traditional chocolate, vanilla or red velvet. Ask them at the cake tasting which flavors would be extra. Definitely shop around. Some of the newer bakeries might be a little less than the popular, well established ones. Be sure to get a cake tasting and see pictures to ensure your cake will look just what you are expecting. If you are wanting a very basic cake and then add fresh flowers to it, a grocery store might be an economical way of getting that. If you decide not to save the top tier then you can save money there as well. I saved my top tier and I must say that it wasn’t very tasty a year later. I don’t recommend it.

Questions to ask

Do you charge extra for colored cakes?

What are you standard flavors and fillings?

Do you charge extra for different flavors for each tier?

How early do you normally deliver the day of the wedding?

What do you charge for delivery?

Do you have a cake stand? Is there a charge for it?

What is your deposit? When is final payment due?

When do I have to tell you the final count to determine the size of the cake?

Do you offer a cake tasting?

Do you supply a box for the left over cake?

How do you charge? By the slice?

Will you place the fresh flowers from the florist on the cake?

If I want cupcakes can you do that?

Will you put the cake topper on the cake?

Alternative Ideas


As far as the groom’s cake goes my couples lately have been on both sides of the spectrum. I have a couple that are creating detailed groom’s cake with items that are special to him. For example, one of my groom’s cake will be a replica of his combat boots with his dog tags and the American Flag. One of my previous couples had the UT Tower. Expect to pay more for this kind of cake.

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Other ideas from other couples is forgoing the groom’s cake all together and doing something else. Examples are chocolate covered strawberries, an ice cream bar from Amy’s Ice Cream (yummy!!) and a collection of different pies. Have fun with it!




Lastly, is the cake topper. This is a way for you two to have something that is special to the both of you. It could be your new monogram, a memento of a trip you took together, an item from a family member, or something the two of you like to do together. Pinterest is a great place to find ideas of what others have done.

If you need help with the planning of your wedding please contact me. I would love to hear your story and what your dreams consist of. Trudy Scott, Royalty Events Planning, 210-595-9263,

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