LED Unplugged lights up Bridal Spectacular Bridal Show

LED UnpluggedA few years ago Kevin Cordova‘s primary business was DJ entertainment for weddings and special events. He let his creative juices flow and has built LED Unplugged, a company for lighting and event rentals. (Definition: an LED is a Light Emitting Diode)

His first business development came in the arena of wireless lighting design. Not simply renting dumb lighting, but intelligent LED spotlights, programmable in color and motion, to truly enhance a venue.

Over time, Kevin has built a lounge furniture division and a cottage industry in beautifully lit antique letters. He continually develops adjunct elements that create special focus within events.

Last weekend, LED Unplugged was in the center of everything at Bridal Spectacular, Las Vegas’ top bridal show. For several years running, Kevin has created a special lounge area for the show. Never the same design, twice.

This year’s lounge area featured furniture, antique letter lighting, and an overarching color theme and design elements. It used both the space and height of the allotted floor space, creating a buffer area, between the exhibitor booth area and fashion show stage and seating.

Photos by Alicia Purdum, Orange Soda Photography
Photos by Alicia Purdum, Orange Soda Photography

Click image to enlarge view

The picture (above) taken by Orange Soda Photography is presented as one image, but is actually stitched together, East and West positioning. They faced each other on the lounge floor, spelling out, WILL YOU MARRY ME? 

Not only was the lounge themed in pink and white, even Kevin was in a white suit, with pink accoutrements.

To give you a sense of scale and perspective we also feature a photo taken by Adam Frazier Photography, with the assist of a cherry picker.

Photo by Adam Frazier, Adam Frazier photography
Photo by Adam Frazier, Adam Frazier photography

Click image to enlarge view

You would think that would be plenty of involvement, but Kevin has a trade show booth, and was hired by many fellow exhibitors to provide accent lighting to enhance their booth presentations of all kinds.

Lots of wedding show exhibitors do excellent work. Kevin Cordova has found a way to be helpful, ubiquitous, and stay several steps ahead of the competition. When businesses and wedding couples work with Kevin, they are not just renting gear; they are getting the benefit of outstanding design creativity.

Oh… you won’t see behind the DJ booth any time soon 🙂

Acknowledgments: Thanks to Orange Soda PhotographyAdam Frazier Photography, and Bridal Spectacular.

Andy Ebon

 

 

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Authority
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Annie’s Gourmet Italian Restaurant Version 2.0

In the kitchen with Grandma Cungie and Annie
In the kitchen: Grandma Cungie & Annie

In late 2009, Annie Payton, CPCE, opened Annie’s Gourmet Italian in Henderson, Nevada. She did so, on the heels of being laid off at Reflection Bay, a golf and event venue… as Greater Las Vegas descended into considerable recession.

The cozy, home-style Italian restaurant had its share of successes and challenges. To move into a fresh success-cycle, Annie considered the options and decided to pursue a new location, doubling seating, upgrading from beer and wine to a full bar,  and adding gaming machines in the bar (The Lost Weekend Bar).

The Lake Las Vegas Marina continues to call on Annie’s as a preferred vendor for its weddings and parties on its yachts. This relationship provides a base of activity for Annie’s off-premise services.

Annie's Gourmet Italian
Ookie

The pet-friendly patio was a highly-appreciated feature of the original Annie’s location. During regular business hours, customers were free to bring their 4-footed friends. The area was sufficiently large to accommodate special events, too.

In searching out a new location, Annie launched a new outdoor space, Ookie’s Garden Pet Friendly Patio.

Achieving Superhero Status

Pasta Primavera
Pasta Primavera

Anyone who has built out a business, from scratch, or expanded/remodeled their home, will tell you about running the gauntlet. In Annie’s case, she continued to operate her original location, while overseeing construction of the new location.

The confluence of contractors, inspectors, hiring and training new employees, and long work days were a taxing experiences. All of these while maintaining a going concern at the original restaurant location. Annie pushed on… 

With a seemingly unending string of ‘surprises,’ on all fronts, Annie pushed on.

The Grand Opening Has Arrived

Enjoy a cocktail! at Annie's Gourmet Italian
Enjoy a cocktail!

Monday, May 19th, is the Grand Opening of Version 2.0 of Annie’s Gourmet Italian. Ribbon cutting by Henderson Mayor, Andy Hafen, and dinner service, beginning at 4pm.

Beginning with the Grand Opening, Annie Payton will lead her staff and customers into a new era. Annie is a soft spoken and spirited leader. She lives in the present and future; for her employees and customers. And those qualities are the soul of her business.

If you live in Greater Las Vegas or have occasion to visit, make it a point to enjoy a meal at Annie’s. You’ll not only eat well and enjoy family-style surroundings, but see the end result of incredibly hard work from everyone involved.

 “La Vita e Bella!” (Life is Beautiful!)

Andy Ebon
The Wedding Marketing Authority
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Social Media Bans Threaten Weddings in Turkey

you-tube-bannedSocial Media Bans, and by that I mean, BANS, are creating political turmoil in the wedding capital of the world. Las Vegas is actually the second to Istanbul, Turkey, in annual volume of weddings (more than 160,000 per year).

For weddings, specifically, and tourism/hospitality, generally, events of the past week have become an instant flashpoint for freedom vs. government control, on the eve of national elections.

Turkey bans Twitter, then YouTube. Is Facebook next?

News Analysis and Opinion, The Wedding Marketing Blog

Hospitality and travel commerce, including destination weddings are fuel for commerce in countries around the globe. Wherever you call home, the actions of local, regional or national government often have dramatic impact, positive or negative on all sizes of business.

In a borderless world of social media. nothing inspires an ear-shattering response than extreme limitations on internet communication. Turkey doesn’t cross my mind often… there are bigger issues in the news cycle right now, such as: The Malaysian Airlines mystery and, in the United States, the devastating mudslides in Washington state.

Elections in Turkey are this Sunday. Be sure of this, the outcome of voting will determine what comes next in the strengthening or softening of Social Media restrictions will have a ripple effect on wedding industry business, among other categories, in Turkey.

Many internet platforms that didn’t exist, even ten years ago, are considered an absolute necessity for businesses small and large. The geographically your business, the more important these communication freedoms have become for you and your community.

Communication freedom is critical.

Speak up and speak out!

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon 
Wedding Marketing Expert
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Logistics isn’t just a UPS ad campaign

Logistics
Room Layout

Early on, in my stint as a nightclub DJ, I developed 360-degree room awareness. As I began to work weddings and other events, I was continually amazed at room set up, flow, timeline, and other logistical factors could sink an otherwise successful event.

Just because every aspect exists on a timeline, doesn’t mean all is well. Success starts before the event, with good communication between venue, vendors and client. If the entertainment company, photographer, videographer, and venue are each working from different timelines, that’s a disaster waiting to happen.

It surprises me that logistics is an issue, rarely addressed,  in most wedding planning books. Having a room layout that allows for proper speaker placement (safety and volume issues), sufficient aisles (service and safety), as well as a host of other timing issues, influence whether the various vendors will work as a team or a dysfunctional family.

Too often, we assume that because we know something to be important, that it’s a no-brainer for everyone. Bad assumption. From time to time, one needs to explain to the client why doing something, the way they have directed by another wedding professional, is not a good idea. Rather than just saying ‘yes,’ a calm and cogent explanation paves the way for success.

One of the industry software tools available for floor plans is Room Viewer. Companies that service venues, as well as the venue, itself, should consider using a product such as this.

How is this a marketing issue? Working effectively with event counterparts, for any event, is Relationship Marketing. Your choice to be the best communicator with fellow vendors, and the client, for the benefit of the event, should almost always win you points in the long run.

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Expert
The Wedding Marketing Blog