I'm mainly looking for general input, but I do have one food question--can I really count on these places that do the whole package deal for you--from the ceremony to the reception and the cake and the catering, etc. etc. or should I hire a private caterer, along with everyone else--a photographer, flowers, etc. Are buffets a good idea or should I stick with the "beef or chicken" plated meal type things?
I am leaning towards having it in my church in my old hometown and having the reception downstairs in the meeting hall. That means I'd have to hire everyone myself--photographers, caterers, find a wedding cake, flowers, etc. My fiance keeps sending me links to fancy estates and mansions that do ceremonies and receptions--and hire their own people to do the food and everything else, I assume. (Haven't looked too deeply into this yet. Just got engaged a week and a half ago.)
IThe wedding won't be very big--only a couple bridesmaids, best man, and maybe 40 guests tops. Any tips?