Snowfall Creates a Magical Night for Newly Wed Couple

IMG_20151121_204627An old wedding superstition says that a marriage that takes place during a heavy snowstorm is considered a lucky one.  If there’s any truth to it then Amy and Bryan are destined for “happily ever after!”

For who could have anticipated a snow storm in November?!  The day before was a balmy 50 degree day with folks making remarks about the extended fall we were experiencing this year.  But experienced Michiganders know the mercurial nature of Michigan’s weather.   Despite the treacherous road conditions,  the 10″-12″ of snow did not stop our quartet from trudging up to The Holly Hotel for Amy and Bryan’s wedding.  The picture taken by our talented violist, Jessica, was reminiscent of a Dickens Village Christmas Scene.  Only a horse drawn sleigh could have further perfected it.

Kimberly Duran and her staff at The Holly Hotel warmly welcomed and assisted us throughout the evening.  he Holly Hotel was the hub of social activity.  Civic and social groups utilized the Hotel while train Original Line Drawing Holly Hoteltravelers and salesmen used the public rooms for meets and demonstrations. Sunday Dinner at the Holly Hotel was a formal event for locals and visitors alike.

The Holly Hotel

Planterra Wedding Shimmers with Classic Elegance

20151114_174137Planterra is known for being a distinctive botanical garden setting for wedding ceremonies and receptions.  It was looking exceptionally beautiful for Sarah and Billy’s wedding.  Tiffany of Party Assurance, along with the efficient Planterra staff created a gorgeous setting for the couple’s wedding day.  We don’t often see candelabras but they created the perfect nostalgic feel for the evening.  Nostalgia is a beautiful description for this wedding. The bridesmaids wore rich royal blue gowns that complemented the classical nature of the conservatory. The couple chose romantic nostalgic music for us to perform during their ceremony and cocktail hour.  From the opening notes of Moonlight Serenade, At Last, Moon River, Satin Doll, My Funny Valentine, Cheek to Cheek to La Vie En Rose, the entire evening was draped in elegance and romance. 20151114_174122

Planterra Conservatory

Party Assurance

Motor City Soul


“Legendary” Wedding at Baronette Renaissance Detroit-Novi Hotel

Congratulations to Kailey and David who were married at the elegant Baronette Renaissance Detroit-Novi Hotel.   We had the pleasure of working with Andrea Solomon, wedding and event planner.  It’s always a comfort to work with an experienced professional who excel at her job.  She orchestrated a beautiful evening from start to finish.

20151107_181353The chuppah was beautifully appointed with fresh flowers.  It symbolizes the new home that Kailey and David will build together and is open on all sides to signify that family and friends will always be welcome.  The Jewish ceremony involves the lovely tradition of a family processional.  Groomsmen escorted the grandmothers to their seats while we played “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles.  David chose a special song, “We are the Champions” and was walked to the chuppah by his parents.  Next, the Kailey’s two sisters and two young flower girls processed to “Love Story” by Taylor Swift.  And finally, Kailey, looking beautiful, was escorted to the chuppah by her parents while we played “Can’t Help Falling in Love”.  Upon reaching the chuppah, Kailey circled David signifying that their relationship would be based in balance, respect and equal partnership.  Rabbi Josh Bennett of Temple Israel officiated the ceremony and noted the significance of the number 7 as being special for this family.  We have always enjoyed Rabbi Bennett’s ability to make connections that bring unity and cohesion to the wedding ceremony. While Kailey and David were celebrating this new bond of marriage at 7:00 on the 7th day of November, they also met on the 7th and their grandparents were married on the 7th.  Rabbi Bennett finished by noting that God rested and celebrated His new creation on the 7th day as well.

Throughout the ceremony, several references were made to the “Legends” baseball organization in California.  It was clear that this organization is near and dear to David’s heart and probably the reason we played “We Are the Champions” for his processional.  We also noted that the wedding favors were adorable baseball theme cookies.  As with most Jewish weddings, the ceremony concluded with the breaking of the glass and shouts of “Mazel Tov”.  The tradition is a reminder that relationships are fragile and must be treated with love and tenderness.  Guests clapped as we played “Simon Tov” and the wedding party exited for photos.  It was a beautiful evening filled with the joy and laughter of family and friends.  What a wonderful way to begin a marriage!

Baronette Renaissance Detroit-Novi Hotel

Andrea Solomon, Wedding and Event Planner

Rabbi Josh Bennett

Baseball Legends

Private Home Weddings Offer Flexible Options

IMG_2474 Choosing to have your wedding at a private home can provide a variety of options from schedule flexibility to the opportunity to personalize the setting and décor to your personal preferences.  But don’t be misled into thinking that it is a cheap option!  You are responsible for providing and/or renting everything you might need for the evening from tents to portable bathrooms, lighting, tables, chairs, etc.  The list is extensive.  Jaime and Nathan were married at their family home in Brownstown this fall.  It was incredibly well done!  When I commented about the beautiful décor to Jaime’s Mom, she said it was the work of many friends!  And that is the key to a private home wedding; many hands make for light work.  IMG_2472

The wedding was held on the front lawn where church pews were set up for guests giving a “church” feel to the ceremony officiated by Pastor Sean Ewbank. An alter was fabricated from tree branches and a chandelier along with a beautiful swag, created by florist Joe Wotasik of Exquisite Designs, provided the finishing touches. The couple chose “Stand By Me” for the bridesmaids and groomsmen.  Not only appropriate for the situation, the song displayed the couples good humor.  Jamie processed to the well know Etta James song “At Last” and the couple recessed to “Viva la Vida” by Coldplay.

We played cocktails in the tent while Ray’s Prime Meats set up dinner and tempted us with their amazing smells. Birch Photography was on hand to capture all the great moments and also provided the photo booth.  DJ Crashers took over for us and got the guests on their feet.  With all the love and support so evident that evening, the newlyweds are certainly off to a great start.  IMG_2476IMG_2478

Pastor Sean Ewbank

Joe Wotasik

Rays Prime Meats

Birch Photography

DJ Crashers

Great Lakes Tents

Unexpected Weather Requires Creative Thinking for Greenmead Wedding

20151016_162531The Alexander Blue House at Greenmead Historical Park is a delightful setting for small, intimate engagements.  The staff, though all volunteer, are exemplary. The home provides the option for outdoor weddings with a charming front porch.  Though this was Amanda and Lewis’ intention, the weather did not cooperate as we had hoped.  The cold and rainy evening presented a concern for the instruments in our string quartet.    We always want to find a way to accommodate our clients and with some creative thinking and the help of the Greenmead ladies, we made some room adjustments and played in the front room overlooking the porch.  With a few windows open, Amanda and Lewis were able to have their outdoor wedding and our music was audible to the guests and our instruments were protected from inclement weather.  The guests came in fro cocktails an dinner during which we played from our extensive collection of Beatles, Broadway Musicals and contemporary songs.  The couple will be returning to Great Britain with the best wishes of family and friends here in Michigan.

Greenmead Historical Park

Atrium Provides Outdoor Wedding Feeling Without the Temperament of Weather

20151030_170744What a delightful surprise!  The Southfield Westin is home to the beautiful Town Center Garden Atrium.  With 25′ Olive trees, tropical plants and a water fountain, it’s like walking into the Mediterranean.  Kylie and Nick were married in this retreat by Father Paul Chateau.  The bridal party wore navy dresses and carried cheerful bouquets of sunflowers!  We don’t see that type of flower often and yet they make a great statement and are so fitting at this time of year.  Kylie’s bouquet was a mix of white roses and sunflowers.  Well done, Gerald’s Florist.  Not to be outdone, Nick wore a burnt russet/burgundy color suit while his groomsmen wore a traditional gray.  We applaud Nick for the courage to be unique!  The color scheme looked fantastic.

The couple chose great songs for the ceremony showcasing a mix of Postal Service, Bruno Mars and Taylor Swift.  Photographer Karlie Fahlman and Westin Coordinator Michelle Ray assisted us with cues.  We were happy to see DJ Dave from our friends at Mike Staff Productions on hand for the reception.  The Westin catered the event and as the pictures show, the table decorations were gorgeous.  We loved the pumpkins! 20151030_170651

Southfield Westin

Karlie Fahlman

Gerald’s Florist

Mike Staff Productions

Father Paul Chateau



Rainy Weather Holds off for Misty Farms Wedding

Misty Farms at Frutig Farms is a beautiful outdoor venue situated just six miles from downtown Ann Arbor. Located on sixteen peaceful acres, the 2400 sq. ft. historic restored barn has room for a band, dancing, and eating. The barn accommodates up to 130 people seated, and for parties over 130, tent site is available. The site overlooks a gorgeous pond set against natural wetlands and rolling fields. Uniquely restored historic buildings sit amongst beautiful perennial gardens.  Simone and Brady chose to be married by the pond on a mild October day. Though rain was in the forecast, coordinators Kelley Frutig and Barbara Thayer advised the couple to proceed.  The weather held off for the ceremony allowing all to enjoy the fall foliage.  Eileen Stevens of Down the Aisle Ceremonies officiated and directed a tree planning ritual for which we played Christina’s Perri’s “A Thousand Years”.  The couple also commissioned an arrangement of “On Top of the World” by Imagine Dragons for their recessional.

Love in Blooms Florist maintained the natural foliage theme with eucalyptus and natural grasses.  For the reception, guests moved into the barn for a dinner provided by Satchels BBQ and dessert from Love and Buttercream.  DJ Luke Frutig of Lufru Entertainment provided the music for dancing which was captured by videographer Blue Racer Productions. Farms and barns have historically been places where people gather and enjoy life and the bounty of the earth. What better place to experience the most special family moment and begin a lifetime of good memories.

Frutig Farms

Down The Aisle Ceremonies

Love In Bloom

Satchel’s BBQ

Blue Racer Productions

Lufru Entertainment



Inside or Outside Wedding? Lazy J Ranch Has The Perfect Solution

20151017_180447(0)Autumn is, without a doubt, one of Michigan’s most visually beautiful seasons! Brides are incorporating fall colors into their wedding themes and many are ambitiously planning for outdoor weddings well into October. As a string quartet, these outdoor weddings in October cause us to hold our breath! Our instruments are delicate and shouldn’t be played outside when under 60 degrees. We Michiganders know that October days can be a sunny 70 degrees or 34 with snow flurries. One just never knows.

For Julia and Aaron’s wedding day, it was cold with snow flurries. Fortunately, Joe Schultheis and the staff at the Lazy J Ranch had a solution that brought the outside…inside. Situated on 30 acres in the beautiful farming area of Milford, Michigan, the Lazy J offers 2 charming barns. As you see in the picture, family members created a framed alter area with a set of two doors. The guests were snug in the barn as the ceremony time approached. When it was time to begin the processional, the staff opened the doors allowing the horizon view of autumn trees in their full glory to be visible to all. The wedding pictures must be beautiful! Thanks to Lazy J Ranch, the couple was able to have their outdoor wedding while their guests were comfortable in the heated barn

When couples talk to us of their desire to have an outdoor wedding, we always advise them to have an indoor option that is equally satisfying to them.  Lazy J Ranch has found the answer to this dilemma. We look forward to playing there in the future and not having to “hold our breath” on those chilly fall days in fear that we’ll be forced to tell a young couple, we simply cannot play outside today. Thank you Lazy J for the perfect solution!

Lazy J Ranch



Bloomfield Hunt Club – Where horses and wine define a good time!

20151022_181309Few places can top the elegance and tradition of the Bloomfield Open Hunt Club. It was in 1917 that a small group of Grosse Pointe and “Hills” residents purchased 6.7 acres at the dirt road intersection of Bloomfield Center Road (now Long Lake Road) and Ball Line Road (now Kensington Road) for the purpose of pursuing their recreational passion of fox hunting.  From that special direction, a truly unique family club has emerged. Although actual fox hunting ended in 1965 the equestrian facet continued to thrive with new barns and over 70 acres for riding and both indoor and outdoor rings.  In the next three decades, the trend towards a wide variety of sports and recreational facilities to the broad interest of the members took shape and continues into the next century.

It was in this venue that we had the pleasure of playing for a Wine Dinner hosted by Wendy GrimaldiGoulx. The evening opened with a horse exhibition and hor d’oeuvres. Thomas Arvid, America’s preeminent painter of wine, was present with several of his beautiful works for sale. We played through dinner as each wine was introduced, sampled and the various courses served. Our classic rock selections were a very well received. We saw the cell phones come out as we played Fred Bear, Kashmir and Stairway to Heaven. It was lovely evening for a group of friends coming together to support the equestrian programs of this esteemed Hunt Club.

Bloomfield Open Hunt Club


Detroit Historical Museum Offers Unique Venue for Weddings and Receptions

images[4]A unique treasure exists in Detroit’s Cultural Center on Woodward Avenue.  This gem is known to many but deserves everyone’s attention. The Detroit Historical Museum is home to the Streets of Old Detroit, America’s Motor City and many other exhibit. We were delighted to find this venue and enjoyed playing for Elizabeth’s wedding reception on the Streets of Old Detroit. This exhibit allows guests to step into Detroit’s past and experience the city’s dramatic transformation from rural frontier town to industrial giant in three time periods: the 1840s, 1870s and 1900s.   This is a unique venue that is sure to entertain and inspire your party guests.

During the two hours, we played all styles of music for the guests. Our Mo-Town selections were a big hit considering our location. As was the Italian opera arias, musicals and classic rock. Forte Belanger of Troy catered the event and it all looked and smelled wonderful! The Pastry Palace in Wixom made the wedding cake and did a fabulous job with the Detroit themed cake.

With several private spaces and the option to setup throughout the entire museum, the Detroit Historical Museum is an outstanding location for parties of up to 2,000 guests!

Detroit Historical Museum

Forte Belanger

The Pastry Palace



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