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Twin Cities wedding and event pianist, Sharon Planer, loves the adventure of bringing events to life with her live piano music!

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Central Minnesota Wedding Association
Challenges that Wedding Professionals Encounter
May 27, 2017

Members and visitors of the Central Minnesota Wedding Association gathered at Geyer Rental in St. Cloud to mingle and discuss their wedding-related experiences.

One of the questions we discussed was, 'What is your greatest challenge'? Here are some of the responses.

Photo Credit:   Blue Sage Insights     Shown:  Todd from  Todd Myra Photography,  Randy from  Rolling Ridge Wedding & Event Center,  Sharon Planer from  Pianist for Parties.

Photo Credit:  Blue Sage Insights  

Shown:  Todd from Todd Myra Photography, Randy from Rolling Ridge Wedding & Event Center, Sharon Planer from Pianist for Parties.

A photographer said that his greatest challenge was not having enough time to take all of the photos that the wedding couple requested. Even though the photographer has explained ahead of time how much time is needed to take all the photos requested. The problem occurs when people aren't ready and things run late.

A venue event planner said a challenge she encounters is when family members try to overtake the wishes of the wedding couple. In such cases the event planner calls into play her expertise in diplomacy.

A venue owner said on rare occasions there can be a disrespect of the property even when the rules have been explained by word and in the contract.

A DJ said that he wishes to communicate with wedding couples by phone so he can get a good feel of their needs and personality and they of him. He said it is sometimes difficult to have couples respond to him by phone. It is important for wedding couples to find a DJ whose personality really clicks with theirs. Speaking by phone is a good way to experience the DJ's personality before investing time in actually meeting with the DJ.

As a wedding pianist I like to reach out to the officiant, wedding venue, and wedding coordinator ahead of time to make sure I understand their rules as they apply to me and I want them to understand my music needs as it involves them. Most wedding professionals are excellent in responding to my communication, but occasionally I receive a lack of response. When I do not receive a response, I gently persist and try a different avenue of communication. 

At the end of our discussions I came away with a greater respect for the other wedding professionals that I met with.

Each wedding professional has their own challenges. We are all striving to make our part of a couple's Wedding Day the best that it can be. It is helpful to realize that the other wedding professionals are striving to do the same!

Are you a wedding professional that would like to add your voice to this conversation? I would love to hear your comment!

Thank you to Geyer Rental for hosting the meeting. It was a beautiful Minnesota spring evening and the tent was perfect! Thank you to Megan Czycalla at Blue Sage Insights for sharing her updates on social media strategies. The appetizers, hors d'oeuvres and beverages provided by the St. Cloud Country Club were delicious! Thank you to Rollie Carlson our charismatic president at the Central Minnesota Wedding Association and to Nichole Winter at Destination Vacation for organizing and presenting this event. 

wedding professionals, Central Minnesota Wedding Association
A Valuable Resource for my Piano Wedding Music Business
February 13, 2017

The Central Minnesota Wedding Association is a valuable asset to me as a wedding professional.

One of the highlights of my job as a solo musician is getting to meet with my engaged couples to plan their music. It puts me directly in touch with their wedding needs and wishes. I absolutely love getting to know them! On the day of their wedding I feel a wonderful connection to them and the special moments that their wedding day represents.

Even though I have this wonderful connection with my wedding couples, as a solo musician I miss the comradeship that those in traditional professional roles enjoy. This has led me to reach out to other professionals in the wedding business.

Being a member at Central MN Wedding Association has been fun, insightful and educational. Members of CMWA are accepted based on their business integrity, professionalism and commitment to excellence. At our meetings I have had the opportunity to get to know some of the best in the wedding profession! 

Sharon Planer is a proud member of the Central MN Wedding Association.

Sharon Planer is a proud member of the Central MN Wedding Association.


My favorite meeting of the year is the Wedding Panel where newlywed couples share their insights with members of the CMWA. The couples share what went wrong and what went right with their weddings and how their wedding professionals contributed to their wedding experiences. I always come away from this meeting with inspirational ideas on how to improve my services!

I am very proud of our Code of Ethics that each member pledges to follow.

Watch the video below to view first hand how CMWA has helped myself and others in our professional lives.

I am happy to have found a wonderful balance between my solo piano performances, interaction with my wedding couples, and networking with other wedding professionals!

Event Planning, Music Planning, Musicians, Wedding Music, Wedding Planning, Weddings
wedding music, wedding vendors, Central Minnesota Wedding Association
Saved the Day! Wedding Stories
February 01, 2015

Find out what happened when a judge who was hired to marry a couple never showed up at the wedding!

The Central Minnesota Wedding Association hosted its Awards Banquet last week. The 'XO' eXtraOrdinary Award was given to the 3 top stories submitted by its members. The stories were judged on how a member of the Central Minnesota Wedding Association 'saved the day' for a couple that had hired them.  The 3 stories that won were written about Larry Rowe at Impressions Mobile Music , Sharon Planer at Pianist for Parties , and Paige Meier at Carlos Creek Winery.

CMWA President, Rollie Carlson, presented the 'Xo' awards to Paige Meier, Sharon Planer & Larry Rowe.

CMWA President, Rollie Carlson, presented the 'Xo' awards to Paige Meier, Sharon Planer & Larry Rowe.

I will share Larry's story in this post and the other stories in later posts.

Larry Rowe is DJ entertainer extraodinare at Impressions Mobile Music

Here is what the bride and groom had to say about Larry 'Saving the Day'! 

The story began on Sept. 27 2014 . . . .

We decided to have our wedding outside in a field on our farm.  We decided to have a Stearns County Judge do the ceremony.  I sent our choice of wording for our ceremony and the address, time and date.  The Judge stated he had a wedding prior to ours but would for sure be here by 5:30. 

Larry came out earlier in the afternoon and set up all of his equipment for the music and lights. 


I was in the house getting ready and all of the guests were arriving.  We had our BBQ started and dance floor was ready for the evening.  We were ready to go... the hay ride to the field was on it's way, it was 5:30 and we were ready. 

When we got to the field we were informed there was no JP yet.  Hmmmmm ... so we said we can wait a little to see if he is just running late.  Larry came up and asked if everything was okay.  We said, "Play some music for a little bit and we will see if he shows up."  Joe's sister had googled 'ceremonies' and had a plan that we would fake it and have Joe's brother just read the ceremony. We could get married at the court house at a later date. 

Larry came over and said, "I can't believe how calm you are.  Other brides would have been crazy by now."  And that was putting it mildly!  Ha Ha.  We told him this is our life, just winging it most of the time.  He offered to check and see if a friend of his was available to do the ceremony.  We said. "Well, we will wait a little bit."  

Larry called his friend just to see if he was around and well, he was fishing.  Larry came back to tell us what he had found out.  We thought for a bit and decided, "I guess we have to pull him off the lake!"  We said, "Okay. The JP isn't showing and we better get someone here."  Everyone was getting hungry and mingling.  So Larry called his friend and asked him to come. His friend stated he had to run home and shower but would be on his way.  I said, "He doesn't need to shower, we don't care if he smells fishy!"  

We were all watching the driveway for the next car to come in and wondered who it was going to be ... the JP or Larry's friend?  Larry's friend pulled into the drive way and  he calmly came up to us asked us if we wanted anything special.  Joe and I both said, "No just lets get married and get to the dancing!"  

Larry literally saved the day, went WAY above and beyond his job.  We loved his music he kept everyone young and old on the dance floor all night.  I cannot say enough GREAT things about Larry and how he just seemed to keep everything going calmly and of course pulling a JP out of his hat was quite amazing!  

We will never forget what Larry did and how professionally he did it.  We feel Larry deserves the XO award. Words cannot explain how lucky we were to have not only a GREAT DJ but one that knew a JP!  

Find out more about Larry Rowe at Impressions Mobile Music

Saved the Day Wedding Stories, Central Minnesota Wedding Association, Impressions Mobile Music, Real Weddings, Awards