Vendor Spotlight – Shadow Lake
In our latest installment of Vendor Spotlights, we sat down and had a discussion with one of our favorite country clubs…Shadow Lake. They are a local country club that does a lot of unique, fun and traditional weddings through out the year. We had the distinct pleasure of playing at this venue not too long ago and it was so much fun with some of the best staff we ever played around, that we had to place them on our preferred vendor list for other bride and grooms to check out. They enjoyed our services and have referred quite a few clients over to us as well.
We discussed Shadow Lake and their weddings with Ryan Carbone, who is their Event Sales Manager and puts together many of the beautiful weddings that you may see on their website, social media and in other pictures or videos. So, on that note…check out our Vendor Spotlight – Shadow Lake.
Vendor Spotlight – Shadow Lake
Kalifornia Entertainment: Hi Ryan. Thanks so much for taking the time time to chat with us about Shadow Lake and everything you guys do.
Ryan Carbone: No problem! It’s great to sit down and be able to explain what makes Shadow Lake so unique with one of our favorite DJ’s!
KE: Tell us a bit about Shadow Lake Weddings & Events. Do you target any particular wedding niche?
RC: We don’t set out to target any particular niche but we find we attract those looking for a “club” experience. We are different from your standard party/banquet hall from the layout of our building, to our service staff and our food. We are right by the water with a beautiful view of the fountain which many of our clients have expressed their appreciation of.
KE: We can definitely attest to the beautiful backdrops and the “club” experience, from when we played there! What would you say makes Shadow Lake unique?
RC: Our number one compliment has to be how great our food is. Our Executive Chef, Sean Flaherty, is certified by the American Culinary Federation and leads our kitchen staff in preparing exceptional dishes to serve our guests. Also, we continue to hear how excited brides and grooms are to get their wedding photographs back because of the stunning settings around the venue for photo opportunities.
KE: We definitely loved the food when we were here. And we heard so many guests express their love for it as well. What’s your favorite part of the job or what is it you love most about organizing weddings?
RC: One of my favorite parts of organizing weddings is seeing it all come together the day of. I absolutely love the setup of receptions; the guest tables, the dessert tables, the place card and gift tables, etc. My favorite part of the job would be hearing back from brides and grooms in the days after their wedding. We work really hard to make their day one that they will never forget and it’s nice to hear that our hard work is appreciated.
KE: YES! That makes it all worth it when you put in a lot of work to go above and beyond and then hear back about how much you hit a home run with their weddings. That’s one of the things that has helped us stand out from every other DJ out there. We strongly believe in doing more for clients than anyone else out there in order to make their event and day extra special! How do you help couples customize their weddings?
RC: See? You totally get it and we really like that about Kalifornia Entertainment, hence why we refer people to you all the time. For weddings, we have a customized wedding packet that we give our couples to jot down some ideas in. We break down each major event of the evening and work together to make sure no detail is overlooked.
KE: That’s some world class planning right there. We always believed in the practice of over planning so there is never any questions about making the day extra special. It’s nice to see you guys share in that same practice. What has been the most extravagant wedding request you’ve ever had?
RC: We’ve had a pretty amazing firework display out over our lake.
KE: I bet that made some pretty amazing picture opportunities. Have you ever had to deal with a Bridezilla? How were you able to overcome that?
RC: I can’t say that I’ve come across a Bridezilla…..yet. I have had to calm some nerves when weather wasn’t cooperating and we’ve had to consider moving an outdoor ceremony indoors. It’s never ideal for a bride and groom to have the vision for their day “rained on” however we try our best to make last minute changes as seamless as possible. Moving a 200 guest wedding ceremony indoors has the potential to turn chaotic, however our staff is trained to handle last minute adjustments with ease and efficiency.
KE: That’s what separates the pros from the amateurs. Being able to make quick last minute changes when things don’t go as planned. The fact that you guys can execute that flawlessly means you are in a league of your own that not many other venues can play well in. How many guests can Shadow Lake accommodate?
RC: We can accommodate up to 240 guests in our Clubhouse and 180 in our Garden Tent.
KE: Are clients able to hold their ceremony at Shadow Lake?
RC: Yes, Shadow Lake offers an intimate wedding ceremony on our beautifully designed Lake Pier which can accommodate up to 250 guests. Having both your ceremony and reception at one location allows your guests to experience the luxury of not shuttling from location to location.
KE: That makes things way easier for many clients too and most importantly…less stressful. Do you guys make meals on-site or do you use an outside catering company?
RC: We prepare all of our meals on site. We are a 95% scratch kitchen which is unique and beneficial for a few reasons. First being the quality of the food and freshness. 95% of the food we send out of our kitchen was made fresh from scratch ingredients on site. Second, if a bride or groom (or any other member of their guest list) has a special dietary request, allergy concern or gluten intolerance we are able to customize dishes to suit their needs. We are able to cater to vegan requests as well.
KE: WOW! I didn’t know you guys used fresh ingredients like that. I bet a lot of clients would be extremely happy to hear you do that. How big is your staff on a typical wedding day?
RC: For plated weddings we try our best to staff one server for every two tables to ensure proper care and attention is being paid to each guest. We staff a bit less for buffet style weddings, usually one server for every three tables.
KC: What are some things that wedding couples should look for or do when thinking about booking a venue for their wedding?
RC: Check the small print for “extra charges.” Is there a charge for chairs? Linen? Bartenders? Set up and tear down? While we do not charge for those amenities some venues do and it’s never fun receiving a bill that is higher than you had anticipated. We extend the opportunity to receive a formal quote (including all charges) to each of our potential brides and grooms. Check out your potential venues social media accounts. It’s always helpful to see how past brides and grooms utilized the space; it might help you come up with some ideas!
KE: Do you see any unique or fun trends happening for next year or are most weddings pretty much the same?
RC: I’ve found that each wedding has their obvious similarities but no two weddings are the same. Couples have been playing around a lot with festivities during cocktail hour. I’ve recommended hiring a magician which initially gets some laughs but turns out to be something really fun that sets a wedding apart from others. Live music during cocktail hour also energizes the group. I’ve had a few clients request their dogs be included in their ceremony, which I’m all for! Brides and grooms have been getting super creative lately with their desserts. They are opting for nontraditional spreads like candy stations, cupcakes, donut walls or bringing in outside vendors such as Abbotts or Coldstone.
KE: We’ve been seeing a lot of Abbotts and Coldstone stations too. Can never go wrong by having ice cream at a wedding. Any other final words or thanks?
RC: We couldn’t do what we do here without our amazing service staff, kitchen staff and grounds crew so thank you to each and every one of them! Also, thank you to the brides and grooms (past, present and future) who have entrusted Shadow Lake with one of the most important days of their lives. And thank you to Kalifornia Entertainment! You guys rock and are without a doubt the absolute best in the business. We look forward to having you here again real soon as one of the best DJ’s in Rochester!
KE: Thanks Ryan! We are looking forward to that as well!
If you have an upcoming wedding and are looking for a fun and wonderful venue, definitely take some time and reach out to Ryan at Shadow Lake to see what they can do for you. Check out their social media profiles and website below:
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/WeddingVenuesRochesterNY/
Instagram Page: https://www.instagram.com/shadowlakeevents/
Pinterest Profile: https://www.pinterest.com/shadow_lake/