October 2022: falling for fall
It is officially Spooky-tober, which means busy season in South Florida events has finally kicked off!
A season change represents a time for transition. As we enter the fall season, we start to say goodbye to oppressive heat (well, only a little bit in Miami), witness the changing colors of foliage (again, not so much in Miami), and welcome a time that focuses on family and friends with the impending holiday season.
In terms of the events industry in South Florida, with the month of October, we begin to shift from a sleepy, (mostly) non-existent summer season to a full-force wedding and events schedule in the fall and winter.
Thankfully, after said slow summer season where it’s easy to question every decision you ever made with regards to starting a venue business, our inquiries and tour schedules have picked up notably. We also hosted our first-ever baby shower in the venue in September!
While we admittedly don’t experience much of an environmental season change down here in Florida – something I very much miss from living in the Midwest and Northeast – I am welcoming the busier wedding season the fall brings.
And with that, I will share some of the big projects we’ve been working on over the past month-and-a-half as well as the takeaways I’ve learned from running the venue.
1. Outsourcing is key to business growth.
As I mentioned in our July newsletter, we hired a marketing team to help us run our social media pages, communications, and website, and they have been phenomenal. I didn’t realize just how much time curating our social media posts, on top of everything else, was taking me; outsourcing this portion of the business has been a lifesaver for my sanity and a help to our business in terms of reaching more people.
This past month we also hired Alexis, who is helping with some of our daily administration, like responding to lead inquiries and organizing our client’s event details.
Not only has Alexis been instrumental in getting us more organized these past few weeks, hiring her was also a sweet moment personally. I actually connected with Alexis last year in August when she came through TheKnot as one of our first leads (she, too, is getting married). We ended up talking for over an hour and became very friendly. Alexis has been one of the earliest supporters of our venue, so it was kismet when she recently wanted to change careers to enter the wedding industry, and we were needing some extra help!
As many other small business owners can relate, I have a hard time letting go of some of these tasks since I want things done exactly how I want them done! However, after working with Mandale Magazine (social media and website) for a couple of months, hiring Alexis was a no-brainer, and outsourcing a lot of the day-to-day tasks has allowed Mike and me to focus more on our vision for the business and building relationships with other industry professionals.
Photo Credit: Becky Lee Photography.
2. Time for reflection is absolutely necessary.
I appreciate typing up these monthly newsletters because they require me to reflect on the past month’s happenings and serve as good reminders for all that we accomplished in the previous 30 days and beyond.
As I’ve mentioned before, the summer was challenging because inquiries for our services drastically fell (for intentional and unintentional reasons). I’m relieved it has started to pick up again, but I still want to take time to hold gratitude for the strides we have taken for the venue and as business owners.
Without holding space to reflect on all that we have accomplished, there is a possibility I would have waved the white flag and given up on the business. In our September’s newsletter I lamented on how friends are an antidote to burnout; I also feel that reflection helps absolve us of feeling burnout, as well. Appreciating all the help we’ve received and the efforts we’ve put in reminds me of the purpose we set out on – and are fulfilling!
3. When one door closes, another one opens.
A couple of months ago, I got a late-night call from one of our booked brides who decided to cancel her wedding as she was no longer getting married. I was both very sad for her (even though I have no doubts that it was a good decision in the long run) and selfishly bummed that we’d no longer get to host the wedding. It was set for mid-October this year.
The silver lining in an otherwise unfortunate situation is that we now have time this month to continue our additions in the venue. I went into more detail in last month’s newsletter since we started construction in August; however, while most of the expansion is done, we decided earlier this week to finish landscaping around our brand-new, 2,100 sq ft cocktail space!
Mike will finally be getting his castle features as we are building the base of a ruined castle turret, and we’re connecting it to stone archways that will run the length of the back of the cocktail space. The added manmade features will allow the cocktail space to feel intimate while providing a beautiful backdrop for photography that’s different from other photoshoot opportunities we have in the venue. And of course, we’re planting more plants!
With a newly empty October calendar in terms of events, we were able to squeeze in this last-minute addition, and I think it will be well-worth it!
To top it off, it should be done in time for a huge production we’re hosting alongside Bobbie (Fortuna Events Miami) and David and Josefina (Tasty Creations Catering) on Sunday, October 30 in the venue! Make sure you’re subscribed to our Instagram to catch all the details on this event!
Updates for TheGoWM…
This month, we plan to:
Finish this most recent phase of the venue additions, which resulted in a third large hosting site intended for cocktail hour, an expanded reception area, and upgrades to the gardens
Host a massive styled shoot + venue tour + food/beverage tasting + huge giveaways on Sunday, October 30 for newly engaged couples
Build a permanent bar using recycled material from the horse stables that will sit between the new cocktail space and expanded reception area.
Start construction on an office space for client and vendor meetings, which will be connected to the get-ready suites
Hang Art by Shannon Martin Perkin’s artwork up in the get-ready suite (we still need to do this…)
Finish those smaller projects that have been on the to-do list for months, like paint the wooden poles that currently hold up some of the bistro lights in the gravel grove · (we also still need to do this…)
This wouldn’t be a community space without the help from, well, our community! If you can assist us with any of the following, we’d greatly appreciate it.
Share our October 30 venue tour + tasting event with any newly engaged couples you know in the South Florida area!
Please subscribe to this monthly newsletter if you haven’t and share if you like what you read!
Please engage (share, like, comment, save) with our posts on social media.
Help us brainstorm events we can host in our space outside of private parties (e.g., wellness events, art galleries, concerts, gaming events, etc.).
Book a tour if you’re in the area and would like to see our space!
Thanks for tuning in this month!
-Emily, Co-Founder, The Gardens of Weber Manor
“You will find that most times you have a vision of what it is that you want to accomplish and that’s most important. It allows you to work backwards and make cuts and changes that will still reflect the overall outcome you wish to achieve. What good is splurging on one particular item if it doesn’t result in the overall outcome you were trying to create?