Jamie Weaver knows how to throw a party! When the Savannah Wedding Vendors founder announced their monthly meetup would be at The Venue on August 9, I knew it would be a magical experience.
Entering the area’s newest event space, I walk into the exquisite ballroom and find Jamie standing next to a really long bar. This thing has to be 30 feet long! After a quick hug, I chat with the professional photographer about SWV. “In 2013, I wanted to create a local professional referral networking group. We are extremely inclusive, meet bi-monthly and have 703 members that offer everything from vintage cars and dove releases to an ice cream truck and a dance on a cloud,” shares the vivacious brunette.
Back up? Did you say “dance on a cloud?” Yep, imagine a whimsical cloud-like smoke for a bride and groom to dance through. Too busy to chat any longer, Jamie runs over to make sure her photo booth has all its props and instant social media signs while I mosey over to snap a pic of Kynzie Martin, Alexa Hankinson and Addy Hawkinson in front of Alphalit’s life size MARRY ME letters.
Giving me a hug is Addy’s mom Alexa. Telling me that she is “killing the mom life,” I tell this gorgeous lady that she is anti-aging, then wave over my longtime friend Brian Judson. While posing him with hair stylist and makeup artist Amy Grzemkowski, I congratulate the business broker on selling his 50th business and remind him that Karma is a queen that gives people exactly what they deserve!
Giggling and agreeing with Brian when he says “My overnight success took more than a decade,” I head over to snap a pic of Southern Comfort Limo’s Greg Rolf, Turbo Music’s Daniel Shepard with his friendly competition Jermaine Kicklighter.
Waving me over is Chef Wendy Armstrong. The Thrive Catering owner loads up a take home plate for me, tells me how awesome her husband Steve Howard is, then poses with Laurie Cipriani. From her start in 2008, Wendy tells me that her kitchen and warehouse has doubled in size, that she has added event rental to her repertoire and has won a few “best caterer” titles over the years. I have been lucky enough to see her success and it makes me smile to see where she is today.
Heading across the 9,000 square foot room, Smallcakes’ Nicki Griffin hands me a cappuccino macaron and a salted caramel cake pop. Chills hit my system, and I pause to have a debate with the Pooler business owner about which dessert tastes better. Handing a red velvet cake pop to Alex Neumann, I laugh when the photographer and retired Marine grabs another sample and runs away with it.
Usually the last person I meet is my most interesting. But tonight, there is a tie! Reverend Gail Hicks does it all. The clairvoyant and wedding officiant tells me that she does spiritual healing, tarot readings and flame card messages which connect to a loved one in spirit.
At the table beside her is Urshita Bhagat, a 30 year old henna artist who spent three years perfecting her henna application. It totally shows because this petite artist has etched an intricate design on my left hand in less than three minutes! It’s so epic that I will not wash my hand for a month!
After David Jowers puts on a 30-minute magic act while Marilyn Youmans School of Dance ladies perform, Jamie takes the mic to thank Gloria Ortega and Veronica Salgueiro for hosting tonight’s event along with Thrive Catering, Sweetly Southern, Turbo Music, SmallCakes and Sweet Soirees.
Making my way out, Jamie stops me to add this – “I want everyone to know that they are welcome to join, that we are a big wedding family and that the networking socials are at a different location every other month. Where else can you spend ten dollars and meet hundreds of wedding specialists while sipping cocktails and appetizers?! Meet us October 11 at Ivory & Beau!”
I Do! I mean, I will!