Southern Bride and Groom Hosts a Wedding Professional Appeciation Evening at Solas in Raleigh, May 4, 2011 10.05.2011

Reposted from Rev. Barbara Lodge

What do you get when you mix an interesting variety of wedding professionals from all areas of the wedding industry, throw in some good food, a great bar with fantastic bartenders, add some fun music and hold the event at a downtown Raleigh hot spot? You get one heck of a fun evening!
Southern Bride and Groom is soon to celebrate their 25th (!!) anniversary with their next publication coming this fall and they hosted a great thank-you event for those of us who have supported them in their growth from a small little publication years ago to the premier bridal resource magazine in our area. Created by Donna Parks, this little magazine is chock-full of wedding tidbits and is a wonderful resource for excellent wedding professionals to help you put together the wedding of your dreams. You can find it all over the Triangle area and it is synonymous with quality and good taste. The magazine has grown through the years to its current prominence and Donna rightly deserves the full credit for this achievement. Here she is (right) with her Assistant, Jenna, (left) and Patricia, the Artistic Director (center). Congratulations, ladies, for your remarkable achievement and for a very fun event that nobody wanted to leave.

They held the appreciation event at Solas restaurant in Raleigh. It was the first time I’d ever been there and I will be looking forward to doing weddings there in the future. What a great place for a special gathering. Very modern and airy, it sports a private open-air patio on the ground level, a nice dance floor on the second level and an open-air patio on the roof, with a great view of the city. There are lots of staging options for weddings or other special events, with each one more interesting than the last.

You’d never know to look at it from the outside in the daylight what this interesting building with its eclectic exterior holds inside, but let the sun go down and it becomes a charming chameleon with many faces.
The interior of the second floor with its dance floor and long bar

And some views from the roof after dark.


SPiN, a local DJ team of Allen Smith and Ryan Pflumm, provided the music for the evening and they were perfect. They caught the feel of the event just right.

Sugarland, a bakery in Chapel Hill, was also on hand with their delicious gelato bar. If you’ve never had gelato before, you owe it to yourself to head over to Sugarland and give it a try. I was hooked with my first bite of their pistachio, but every flavor is creamy and delicious. They have become so renowned that even Mrs. Obama and Mrs. Biden, who are hosting a Mothers Day luncheon for the military wives in Fayetteville, NC this coming weekend, have chosen Sugarland as their baker. Hopefully they also opted for the gelato bar. Good job, Sugarland. That’s quite a nice feather in your cap!
Lyn Graves of Fresh Affairs provided all the beautiful floral decorations.
There were so many wedding professionals there that night and it was great to have some leisurely time to just sit and chat with everyone and catch up on their lives. Here are just a few;
Ann Eberle of Highgrove Estate, Tracy Adams of Adams and Events, Sally Litton of Paperwhites, Vickie Ismael of Highgrove Estate, Joy Edwards of A Joyful Occasion (I did not get the name of the lady on the far left)


John Hayes of Southern Video Design and Rev. Robin Renteria with her sweetheart, Ruben (right)


The Three Amigos – Rev. Robin Renteria, Rev. Kayelily Middleton, and myself, Rev. Barbara Lodge


Wedding Planner Sally Oakly of Sally Oakley and Videographer John Hayes  of Southern Video Design
Wedding Planner Angie Wright of Chic Details


Photographer Chris Azul of Azul Photography


Photographer Craig Carpenter (center) of Luster Studios


Photographers Meredith Walters of Walters and Walters and Christobal Perez of Azul Photography


Photographer Neil Boyd of Neil Boyd Photography (who helped me with some settings on my camera – thanks, Neil)


Rev. Robin Renteria and DJ Ryan Pflumm of SPiN


Ashleigh Collins of Capital City Club, Devon Schwartz and Tracey Nielson of The Carolina Inn
It was a wonderful evening and all of us thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. I hope when you see a copy of Southern Bride and Groom you will pick it up and take it home to use it as the treasure it truly is for planning a wedding.
Congratulations Donna, Jenna and Patricia for your milestone achievement of 25 years and thanks again for such a fun time.


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