by Danielle Andrews, President & Co-founder of The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada Inc.
Last month I had a funny experience while on a Site Visit at a venue, I shared the story on our WPIC Alumni Facebook Group and asked our WPIC Certified Wedding Professionals: “What is the weirdest/funniest/strangest experience you have had as a Wedding Professional?” Their stories didn’t disappoint!
I was at a site visit at a beautiful historic venue set around a forest and farm fields. A little chipmunk got into the building, and the venue owner was terrified.
It was like comedy of errors. That thing went upstairs and ran all over the place.
I was injured and using a cane. The florist blocked the entry while I smacked my cane around (hopping on one foot) to herd the little guy out the front door. It took three dressed up ladies, a cane and about half hour to be able to get him out, laughing and shrieking the whole time.Danielle Andrews, The Wedding Planners
I had a wedding last year where the couple arranged for a shuttle service to pick up guests staying at a local hotel. All the guests got on the WRONG bus and arrived at someone else’s wedding venue. They didn’t realize until the ceremony started that they were at the wrong wedding -talk about wedding crashers!Liz Josevski, Alfresco Wedding
It was my first wedding as a wedding coordinator (so you want to do great).
The ceremony was over and everybody arrived at the reception. During the cocktail hour, the bride’s son came to me and asked for help. He had rented his suit and shoes in town. Unfortunately, one of his shoes literally split in two just before the entrance. He told me, “It’s okay, I will wear my beach sandals !!” Oh… I was pretty sure that his mother would notice it. So I picked-up his shoes and my emergency bag (with my crazy glue in it) to repair them. And it worked !!!!
The photographer took a picture of me during the “operation”.
Marie-Ève Quirion, Mariages et Événements ME
I had a groom once request for the (civil) ceremony to have the objection moment and the phrase about how the woman should always submit to her man. He was grinning and specifically said the word “submit” needed to be in there. The officiant was Chinese so I needed to translate and even HE said “no, I’m not doing that” when he understood the request, along with myself and the very uncomfortable bride. Groom backed off fast but he looked a little disappointed between his smiles. To this day I don’t know if he was joking.Kimberly Fu Skubic, Envision Weddings
Strangest experience was breaking up a full blown screaming match between the bride and the best man. The best man had written something in his speech that painted the bride in a bad light. The MOH had found out about this and shared it with the bride who basically just started screaming.
It was not due to malicious intent, but rather that the Best Man spoke English as a second language and didn’t understand why that specific wording was bad and thought he’d written a nice speech.(BTW….the groom was nowhere to be found during all this, even though the BM was his brother)
Finally after splitting them up, handing the bride a bottle of wine, I was able to get to the bottom of it and figure out a solution. That was just one of the many things that was nutty that day. Craziest wedding I ever did!(Which I did for free because I had stupidly given away this package at a wedding fair. PSA never give away a service. )Corina Waldie, YPF Weddings & Co.
I once assisted another planner with a wedding where the couple insisted on having their puppy at the wedding at an outdoor venue that did not allow animals. I had to drive to their condo pick up the little guy, get him dressed in the cutest outfit and take him to the photo session while hiding and sneaking him around the grounds with them for photos! He was only a few weeks old, so super rambunctious little fellow, who insisted on sitting on me while we drove to and from the condo and of course made me run after him like crazy while on-site hiding him in bushes, behind me and so much more It’s a good thing I’m such a dog person but it was definitely an entertaining day. I felt heartbroken when I tried leaving him back at the condo which took forever because he kept running after me and dashed out the door to elevators several times before I could trick him into staying. Poor thing whined so much at the door though when I left I almost criedCristalyne Seegobin Gulati, Cristalyne Celebrations
I wasn’t sure how to tell a mother of the bride that her skirt was way beyond short and she would need to be mindful of bending over. So my assistant and I sort of hovered – in case she was going to bend over and expose herself to try and block the “view”. Thankfully she changed for the reception. The bride forewarned me that this might happen, but I was just so shocked. Apparently mother of the bride was trying to compete for attention on the wedding day. Ex-husband had his new partner in tow.
Wendy Lee, Asian Fusion Weddings
Halloween wedding with everyone in costumes, at a haunted venue.Samuel Fleming, Evolved Entertainment
I once coordinated day-of for a Nigerian wedding. A time came when the aunts and mother of the bride started hand out some sort of gifts to guests. The gifts were toilet paper, bags of rice, and other random household items.Nadine Lamanna 818 Events
The weird part was… it was happening DURING the bride and groom speech. The ladies kept walking back and forth informally across the dance floor and no one could pay attention to a word the bride and groom were saying because it was so distracting watching them drag bags of rice and toilet paper.
No one seemed mad – so be it! But it was quite a random scene. –
I once had a very happy Nigerian groom out of excitement during the dance party portion of the reception take off his cap and exchange it with the bride’s gele (A traditional head wrap) and place it on his head whilst proceeding to dance for a good 10 mins in each other’s head wears. It was super spontaneous and the guests had a good comic relief laughing so hard. It is uncommon to see a man wearing a gele albeit the groomAdeola Damie Celebrations Event Management
I once had the unique pleasure of planning a wedding in a Ghost Town. It took rustic to a whole new level – but we were prepared or so we thought. With countless outhouses places throughout the space for guests to use, we were approached by one lovely guest who was quite upset. The outhouses were running low on toilet paper she claimed. Apparently that had led to her getting pee on her romper . While the team and I looked into the toilet paper situation – the same guest let us know that she would be okay as she had stashed all the extra toilet paper rolls in her car . There was no convincing her to relinquish the stash and so now I ALWAYS bring extra toilet paper (in addition to that accounted for with the washrooms) just in case.
Sarah Sansom, Day By Design Weddings + Events
I had to hire a separate wedding day crew to ensure that the Groom’s mother did not cause a scene.Denise Georgiou-Newell, Weddings & Travels Jubilee
The bride did not want her in the Bridal Suite at all and the groom gave us all the information we needed to be able to “handle” his mother. She was known to take the spotlight off of those celebrating by exaggerating illness or creating some kind of chaotic mess where all attention was going to her.
Well, come the wedding day, as promised, she began to ‘act up’. Just as everybody was being seated after the receiving line, she started fanning herself with her hand and acting as if she was very hot. She had not yet been seated so we walked her out into the foyer where the wedding party was starting to get lined up for introductions; the couple was not out yet. She started insisting that she needed to go to the bridal suite in order to administer her insulin shot. We advised her that she’s not able to go to the bridal suite and that she would have to use one of the washrooms & that we would be very happy to make sure no other guest was in there. She raised her voice & said the washrooms are dirty and she needed to take her clothes off to administer the shot. Again, we assured her that she can definitely use the washroom and we would be happy to have it cleaned prior to her going in and making sure that somebody was to stand outside while she did what she needed to do. As we were speaking to her we were leading her off to the side so she would not be heard & to help diffuse the situation. She started crying and pretending to hyperventilate. At this time my team called me over and I asked her if she’d like me to call an ambulance? (Keep in mind that the groom already mentioned to me that she might act in a way where we would think she needed medical attention.) She started crying very dramatically saying no she just needs to have her insulin shot. At this point, we had gotten her a chair and some water and she was sitting off to the side.
I had to run back as my couple was ready to be introduced, got them in without any issue (that they knew of), rushed back to lead the mother into the washroom in order to administer her shot. Miraculously, she felt better & didn’t need it so urgently any more, she went to the washroom & into the reception and joined the guests.
It’s sad that she missed the introductions, but we were definitely expecting it. There were other small things that happened that night with her but that one was the most challenging & strangest situation.
The strangest thing that I’ve experienced as a wedding planner was at a wedding I planned in London, England. The groom gave his debit card to one of his cousins to help take £500 from the ATM and give it to me to pay the MC’s balance. She handed the money to me in an envelope however I made the mistake of not counting the money there and then. I gave the envelope to the MC at the end of the reception and he counted in front of me and it turned out that there was £300 in it. The groom’s cousin instead that she gave me £500. I ended up paying the difference by electronic transfer from my bank account as the MC needed to be paid and I didn’t want to bother the couple. Lesson learnt!!!!Temi Apara, Teantona Event Connoisseurs TEC
It was probably in my 3rd year as a planner – the couples’ guests got so out of hand they danced on tables, broke two, then started to remove clothing and ran out the doors to the lake and jumped in off the rocks. The banquet manager and I just stood there stunned not knowing what to really do … of course it was just at the witching hour!Debbie Savic, Fresh Occasion
One of my first weddings … the bride wouldn’t sit down and eat her meal… open bar time and her friends had her doing tequila shots and due to her tiny size , no food etc she promptly threw up over the bar, and bar tender… lesson learned (no shots allowed at our venue since.)Julie Leadbeater, The Willow Inn, Hudson, Quebec
Written in my contract is the proviso that I get wedding cake.
It was our tradition that after the wedding was all done my wife and I , exhausted and tired, sat on our deck – drank tea and had cake. Usually around 3:30 am.
One bride had a pork-flavoured wedding cake. I kid you not. Blahhhhh…
Derrick H. Foss, Derrick H. Foss Floral Design & Consultation