Wedding

The San Mateo Marriot as a Wedding Venue

Close to the SF Airport is a wedding venue for anyone who needs to have a reception in the San Francisco Area or the Peninsula. One can be married at a San Francisco church and do the reception in San Mateo since it is so close. They did have a nice courtyard area where people can have a small ceremony or if they wanted to have cocktail area. It was a beautiful day so it was nice to be serving drinks outside in the August summer. 

The wedding reception itself was small and very personable. Around the facility, they had up lighting that added a special aura to the room.  16 up lights were used to surround the whole venue. 

As the dj, I wanted to be close to the dancefloor and the Marriot made it happen. We were able to produce a pretty gobo to project. We did have enough space to include a 7-foot screen and a projector. 

What I liked about this place was we went a few minutes over and the staff was not rushing us out nor tell me to stop on the dot. They let me play the last slow song of the night. Also one of my favorite vibes of the night was the positive energy on the dance floor. The wedding had a mariachi for dinner but I provided the tunes for dancing and it consisted of Spanish music (cumbia and salsa). So the majority was Spanish music and the rest of the music was old school funk. The Couple knew how to have a good time and provided the positive energy in the room.

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Cinnabar Golf Course as a venue San Jose/ Morgan Hill Border

Deep in South South San Jose is a beautiful golf course, Cinnabar Golf Course but it is more than a golf course. They have an event area to throw elegant parties. Last Saturday, I was at a wedding that was pleasant to the eye. The staff really did a good job setting up the tables and the décor. The wait staff was so on it. They were serving appetizers and made sure everyone had water at the table. It was a big wedding so they had a lot of work and handled it perfectly.  Cinanabar has an outside area where they can hold weddings or it can be the cocktail area. During the party they had managers to make sure the buffet line was not too long and they communicated to make sure the tables were released at their appropriate time. It was very efficient. Managers also introduced themselves to me and kept me in the loop of change of events. Cinnabar has a nice long bar to serve their guests. My favorite perk of the bar is they have fruit infused water that is self served in case the bartenders are serving others and you just want some water.

 

Cinnabar has had some new upgrades to the event area. They have a new white dance floor which stands out. It does feel more spacious than before. I was there last February and It has a fresh look. What I like about Cinnabar are the windows. They have windows everywhere so you can see wonderful expansive greens outside. I have done 2 weddings and a private party here and it has been phenomenal experiences. I look forward in playing her again soon.

 

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Saint John Viannney  Venue in San Jose

Nothing beats being close to home. It took less than a minute to get to the venue. The location has a stage with power in the front of the stage so there is less cabling involved. Capacity for the venue is a little over a 1000 people so it can hold big functions. This venue is very spacious and we had over 23 tables set up. There was plenty of room for buffet tables, and guest tables and have a photo booth that was really spread out with room to spare. Due to the big venue space, there is plenty of parking available behind the venue.  It was a hot day but the AC did a good job keeping everyone at a good temperature.

For cocktail hour we had a mariachi sing to the crowd. In the front of the community center in the lobby area, folks were able to quench their thirst with the open bar. It was nice since the bar was busy they had a table to fill up your cup with tea or cold water.  The caterers had access to a very clean modern kitchen.

 

It’s a good spot if you are having a Catholic wedding across the street then head over to the community center. Bride and groom can take pictures in front of the church or in front of the rectory (which is on the same property) which has a lot of trees and green grass. This is a nice spot to have an event in the East Side of San Jose.

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Best Venues in the South Bay Area

These venues are www.bwadj.com favorites I have played the past year or so. I based it on how awesome the venue is and how fabulous the staff is. 

 

Favorite Bay Area Venues I have been a Dj At 

Los Gatos Lodge (Los Gatos)

They are my most favorite spot. They can provide an outside venue for a ceremony and also have a nice outside area to have cocktail hour. They do have multiple rooms for events. The staff rocks and do a great job taking care of guests. A great place for birthday parties and high school reunions. 

 

Dave and Busters (Milpitas)

D and Bs is close to my home and close to my heart. Staff is super fun. Before the guests showed up they were dancing while working. Fun group. Staff helped me take my gear. Packages can include catered meals and game cards for guests. 

  

Gilroy Gardens (Gilroy)

Gilroy Gardens is a huge venue. They do offer two big venues for weddings. They can offer rides and games to guests as part of a package.  Its so big that I lost a dj table and staff told me if they found it they can drive it to me. What service!

 

Alexander by the Sea ( Palo Alto) 

Best food I have had in a long time. Everything just melts in your mouth. Staff did help me with my gear which was a good help since we had to go down stairs. Good place for small events or corporate functions. 

 

Vinyl Room (Burlingame)

The past two new years I have played there. It has a good fun atmosphere.  The biggest decision of the night is to play the biggest song of the year right after the countdown. Last year it was G- Eazy No Limit and this year it was They can hold private events there.

 

Double Tree San Jose (San Jose) https://doubletree3.hilton.com/en/hotels/california/doubletree-by-hilton-hotel-san-jose-JOSE-DT/index.html

Very nice staff and able to hold huge events.

 

SF Marathon (2 street locations)

I played at two different spots in the city but the best was by the bridge. I was able to go as loud as I want and the runners would get down when they ran by. 

Westin Hotel San Jose (San Jose)

Centrally located downtown. Very nice décor and staff actually helped me unload equipment. 

 

Mama Mia (Morgan Hill)

They have a nice outside area with a water fountain and a nice indoor venue space. Staff is accommodating. 

 

Palo Alto Country Club (Palo Alto)  

Very nice golf course. Staff took care of me when it started sprinkling and saved my equipment. 

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The Grand Entrance at a Wedding by BWADJ (San Jose, Morgan Hill and Gilroy)

The Wedding is all about the bride and groom. Typically the couple is taking pictures while the guests are enjoying the cocktail hour. First the bridal party is introduced to the guests. Before the wedding, BWADJ makes sure that everyone is in the correct order and makes sure they pronounce everyone’s name correctly. While prepping the bridal party, Bwadj goes over the names of the bridal party to their liking. There have been times where the bridal party were partying and sometimes have a short attention span. During weddings, something always pops up such like the flower girl is too shy to be in the party or someone else from the bridal party is not present so a new order will have to be written. 

 

With the bridal party coming into the venue, a festive song is pumped through the speakers. Some couples opt to get both first name and last name of the bridal party announced while others just opt to just have their first names announced. In some cases, the dj may announce, “ Ladies and gentlemen, let’s welcome the bridal party. Let’s put our hands together for them!”

 

Once all the bridal party is at their table, then the music is turned off. Bwadj gets everyone to stand up for the grand entrance. The new Mr. and Mrs. Smith is announced with their own theme song blaring in the background. A dj can say, Ladies and Gentlemen, the moment you all have been waiting for. Put your hands together for the new Mr. and Mrs. Smith.  Everyone is standing and clapping and this is one of the most memorable events of a wedding being introduced as the new Mr. and Mrs. 

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Preparing for a Rainy Wedding in Gilroy (Prepping a wedding for the weather)

  I did a wedding this past Saturday in Gilroy. Based on the weather predictions, it was suppose to rain all day Saturday. My wedding clients were prepared and ordered a tent to protect against the elements. 

  When I got there, it was not raining so unloading and setting up was not difficult. The tent kept my equipment dry for the most part. It is ideal to keep some towels handy when the event when rain is involved. Electronics and water do not mix. It can be a little stressful when a speaker is getting wet without being dried. 

  The wedding folks were very prepared. They made sure they had other people to help setting up the party and be there for anything. We were provided with towels for the wet dance floor. At the beginning of the event, someone brought another canopy to add to the tent. It would be ideal to bring extra canopies just in case more ground has to be covered during a wedding. 

 For the ceremony, I had a wireless lapel for the officiant and a wireless microphone on a stand to hear the wedding couple to do their vows. I tested all wireless equipment and it sounded perfect. Then finally I put on a wired microphone close by and let everyone know its there just in case. It is always good to be prepared. 

 Although it was raining the whole time, the party was a huge success. Everyone was dancing even though it was raining cats and dogs. By being prepared made it a great as it was. It takes a team to make it happen and knowing who is in charge of what.

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Best Man Speech Tips

They have to organize the bachelor party and they have to deliver the best man speech at the wedding. Some folks may not like  public speaking but if one is prepared then they can really have a great speech.

 

If you fail to plan then you plan to fail. I know that you have heard that before but it is so true when it comes to the best man speech. With all that is going on, the best man should get the speech ready 2 to 3 months in advance. There will be so many distractions happening so its best done right away.

 

Only make jokes about your groom and leave the new wife alone with your jokes. She will get her turn with her maid of honor. Do not revel too much about the groom but some stories need to be shared while others should be left alone. 

 

Practice.. Some folks are awesome speakers while others not so much. But with dedicated practice then the speaker can at least look the part. Practice the speech in front of the mirror. Also, maybe have someone record you on your phone. You don’t want to talk to fast and you want to make sure you sound good. Speak slowly. One trick of the trade I used is really move your lips when you speak each word. They come out clearer than ever. Maybe practice in front of some trusted friends who can give you feedback. 

 

Don’t try to wing it and not have your speech not written down. It does not need to be written down word by word but at least be in bullet points. I would also have the notes on your phone in case your notecard gets lost in the shuffle of the wedding. 

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How much musical control to do you give to your dj?

The couple can pick the important songs such as the first dance song and cake cutting song and can trust the dj to play what he thinks would be good. Some couples can just give an outline and let the dj run free. Since some couples are super busy and would want to dj to do all the leg work. Other couples may incorporate a do not play list. Also, the couple can give a list of must play songs for the wedding. Dj would be able to incorporate those must play songs throughout the night. 

 

The best weddings I have been a part of was when couples gave a list to the dj. Often times the couple does not know when to start. With my couples I give them a list of popular songs played at weddings. Music ranges from 80s to pop to jazz to rock. From the list, the couple would send their selections. The couple is also free to include songs that are not on that list. From the selections, the dj can continue the vibe of the event with the songs that they were given. 

 

Also communicate is key with your dj so the dj can see what kind of music to be played at the wedding. The dj can use the playlist the couple gives them as the foundation and play songs that would fit in that category. Also, as a couple, it’s good to be specific with the music requests. An example would be if the couple wants old love songs but in reality, they wanted Motown. 

 

In a nutshell, the couple should help the dj build a list and the dj uses that as the foundation.

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