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2016 wedding fair and Semple Mansion in Minneapolis Menu

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2016 wedding fair and Semple Mansion in Minneapolis

Come to my favorite wedding fair in the Minneapolis, St Paul, MN area–the Semple Mansion Wedding Fair, Sunday, 3/6/16, 12-4pm!



semple3
Janelle Elise Photography
Wedding Event – Semple Mansion, 100 West Franklin Ave., Minneapolis

  • Free wedding fair in Minneapolis at the amazing Semple Mansion, AKA the Grand Palladian Ballroom!
  • In uptown Minneapolis, a few blocks east of Lyndale, at 100 W. Franklin Avenue
  • Sunday, March 6, 2016 from noon-4pm
  • Free admission
  • Free parking across the street (on the south side of Franklin Ave. in the Park Nicollet Clinic lot…it’s really easy to see).

The most gorgeous wedding site in Minneapolis
The most gorgeous wedding site in Minneapolis–Semple Mansion.

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In the very bottom floor is the wine vault–amazing! There is so many gorgeous rooms and areas in the mansion, which you get to explore during the wedding fair. It really gives you a great idea of how your reception, your cocktail party, and perhaps even your ceremony can be set up…all while eating and drinking and meeting local vendors who are classy, friendly, and fun.
Michael Anderson Photography

semple5
Jeannine Marie Photography
Here’s just one of the many amazing rooms at the Semple Mansion–you don’t have to be having your wedding at the mansion to go to the fair…and all these rooms will be filled with vendors, samples…and all gorgeous!

semple7

Here’s the third-floor ballroom at the Semple Mansion–and yes, it really is this gorgeous! Gold leaf, beautiful views, old wood and paintings…you will be delighted. (Delighted is a strong word, but really…you will love it, and be gushing!).

Come and check out the Semple Mansion at the wedding fair, see a bunch of vendors, treat yourself to a great time, Sunday, March 6th, 2016, from 12pm – 4pm. It’s fun to be engaged, and this is a great way to find out what photographers are like personally, what caterer’s food really taste like, see if you like the way florists set things up…there’s really nothing like seeing things for yourself. Plus, the wedding fair is big enough to have a lot to choose from, but it’s not over-whelming. Just a first-class, excellent experience, I highly recommend going!

Semple Mansion Wedding Fair
Address: 100 W Franklin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55404
Phone:(612) 290-4448

Wedding Fair, Semple Mansion, Sunday 3/6/16, 12-pm, Free admission

semple8
Semple Mansion, photo from Brovado

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The wonderful Design Cuisine Catering in Minneapolis, MN

designcuisine

Dear readers,

I love a personal recommendation – when the recommender actually knows the vendor, when they’ve eaten the food, and can tell you what you’re really getting, you know? I mean, you’ve got to taste the food and know that you love it, but so much with a wedding is the service – are the people loyal, trustworthy, and smart…and personable! You’re relying on so much when you’ve got everything planned for one day, so there’s nothing like a personal recommendation for a wedding caterer.

Design Cuisine of Minneapolis

With all this wonderful stuff in mind, I highly recommend Design Cuisine Catering for weddings in the Minneapolis, MN area. They’re headed by Ann Jacobson, who I have met many times, and these pictures are from Semple Mansion‘s wedding fair this year. Ann is totally on-the-ball, and the food is fantastic! (They gave out lots of free samples at the wedding fair). If you have at least a hundred guests, their packages include china and silverware as well as tablecloths and napkins, cake cutting, and servers, which is nice–many caters tack on extra charges for all that. Design Cuisine is part of Macy’s, and Macy’s was the place that made my wife (well, she was my fiance at the time) feel so good, with the wedding fair we attended at their downtown Minneapolis location back in 2008.

Highly recommended – well done, Design Cuisine! :-)

All the best,

Rev. Tomkin
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s, 2012’s, and 2013’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

 

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Semple Mansion Wedding Fair, April 12, 2015

Want to go to the best wedding fair in Minneapolis?

sempleexterior

Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN is having its annual wedding fair in April – you should come!

I’ve been officiating weddings in the Minneapolis, MN area for almost twenty years, and my favorite wedding event in Minnesota is the one at Semple Mansion. It’s on Sunday, April 12th, 2015, from 12:00pm – 4:00 pm, at 100 West Franklin Ave. in Minneapolis.

sempleinterior

This photo is not from one of their wedding fairs, but rather, from a cocktail hour in full swing after a ceremony at Semple Mansion. Still, the photo gives you a good idea of how you feel really special when you’re there at the wedding fair.

 

What makes a wedding fair fun? The whole point is to make you feel special – that you’ve got a special day coming up, that you are pampered, that people treat you really well. You want to be surrounded by friends and family and treated like you’re really important (because your loved ones are really important to you, and you want to make them feel welcome and loved at your wedding reception). Semple Mansion does all this perfectly – it’s set up in this gorgeous mansion, and has an entire third-floor ballroom just for your reception.

sempleballroom

sempleballroom2

The above two photos are of the top-floor ballroom, where wedding receptions are held (the other photos are where the cocktail hour usually is). Visiting Semple Mansion really has to be seen to be believed…that’s real gold flake up on the ceiling!

 

semplecake

 

semple_samples

What’s wonderful about samples at a wedding fair is that you’re tasting things you haven’t tried before, flavors and combinations that are really amazing. I love savory foods as well as desserts, and catering can only be experienced in person (not via a website)…it’s really great fun to check out the amazing caterers (and hopefully hire one for your wedding!). Some wedding venues make you use their catering, while others let you choose (Semple Mansion lets you choose – here’s a list.) Note that you don’t have to be having your wedding at Semple Mansion to come to the wedding fair…sometimes I wind up plugging Semple because I love them so much, but it’s really a great event for anyone getting married this year because everyone treats you so well (and you get to see all these wonderful wedding elements all at once).

 

During the party that is Semple Mansion’s wedding fair, there are free samples of cake and food, and vendors who are providing music, conversation, examples of gorgeous flowers, dresses…it’s really quite an amazing event.

semplefireplace

It’s hard to explain just how gorgeous Semple Mansion in Minneapolis is, but here’s a shot of just the fireplace. Imagine the rest of venue like that…Yes, it’s amazing.

 

And the fair is not held in a big ol’ convention hall or anyplace boring, instead, it’s in this intimate, gorgeous location.

sempleceiling

This photo from Instagram, which just shows a tiny bit of the mansion, also gives you a good idea of the wonderful craftsmanship that is all throughout the Semple Mansion.

 

There’s such a thing as “right-sizing”, and the Semple Mansion wedding fair is a great example of this – you get to see everyone and do everything, but there’s not dozens and dozens of wedding photographers (for instance)…just the right amount so you get a good idea of what everyone is doing. You may have all your vendors lined up, but usually there’s a few you haven’t got yet, and here’s a chance to meet them in person–when they’re at their best, everyone’s friendly, you get to see multiple vendors all in the same day, and it’s just easy, fun…and…it’s glamorous! Such a beautiful setting, and I’ll be there, too – hope to see you! Again, Sunday, April 14th, 2015, noon to 4pm, at Semple Mansion at 100 W. Franklin in uptown Minneapolis, MN.

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Just south of downtown Minneapolis, in the uptown neighborhood (south of 94, east of Franklin). The Semple Mansion is sometimes called “The Grand Palladian Ballroom” because that’s the ballroom on the top floor.

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Website: http://www.mnweddingminister.com
Blog: http://blog.mnweddingminister.com
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s, 2012’s, and 2013’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Radisson Roseville for weddings

Email from a friend:

Hi Rev Tomkin,

Hope all is well with you! Would you like to visit me in my new position, at the Roseville Radisson? There is an outdoor courtyard here for weddings and it is popular and gorgeous. Have you officiated a wedding here? If not I would love the opportunity to show you around!

I look forward to hearing from you again!

Kathy Anderson| Catering Manager
Radisson Hotel Roseville
2540 N Cleveland Avenue
Roseville, MN 55113

Dear readers,

I’m glad I visited Kathy, because she’s right – what a great hotel for wedding ceremonies!

radisson1

Here’s the outside…the Roseville Radisson Hotel is right off of 35W and Highway 36, just north of both Minneapolis and St. Paul, maybe ten minutes away from either downtown. And very easy to get to for out-of-town guests (and since it’s in a suburb, there’s free parking!)

radisson2


The first two images are by me, and the above picture is from Radisson.com. It’s nice to have a candid photo that I take, so you get a super-realistic view, but the photo from Radisson is much more what it really looks like (I just couldn’t get a picture from that height!) 

Radisson wedding ceremonies

radisson5

The top image was taken by me, the second image is from The Knot.

Above is the courtyard Kathy was talking about – you can have a private wedding ceremony here, and then afterwards, head right to the cocktail hour indoors (with the dinner reception to follow).

The Radisson Roseville has many advantages over the downtown Twin Cities hotels – not just the free parking and easy access from the freeway, but also, the prices are very reasonable. A typical dinner entree might be the Park Parma Marsala, for instance, for $22 each (downtown hotels are two to three times the cost). Plus, the hotel gives you free suite for you and your fiance, free bartenders, free security, free linens and tableware (many wedding reception centers charge extra for all that, but all those things are mandatory). The minimum food and beverage charge is very reasonable (Saturdays are $6500), and then there’s no room rental, either. (Downtown hotels are often twice that cost).

Special note? If you want to have your wedding on a Friday, there are many incentives – the food/beverage minimum is lowered to $5,000, and you get free late-night pizza. Plus, the hotel throw in a free 30-person brunch the next morning, for your gift opening.

Great deal (and great people who work there!) Thank you, Kathy!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

PS: When I visited, they weren’t set up for a wedding, but here’s a  picture from WeddingWire showing how the ballroom is set up for wedding receptions. Nice!

PPS: Here’s a shot of the lobby from Orbitz.com! :-)

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More beautiful photos from Tim and Madie photography!

I love working with Tim and Madie photography of Minneapolis, MN – not only do they take beautiful pictures, but they’re fun and friendly people and great to work with!

Tim and Madie shoot great wedding photos, and are awesome people!

Check out their photos of the last wedding we worked together on! http://www.timandmadie.com/galleries/weddings-featured-galleries/holly-leonard/

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

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Five Piece Brass Quintet for weddings in Minneapolis

Classic Brass Inc.

I got to see (and listen to!) Classic Brass Inc., the wonderful brass quintet in the Minneapolis, MN area, play for a wedding ceremony at the University Club in St. Paul. There’s nothing like live music – I love it, the music puts all the guests at their ease when they enter a venue, and adds a wonderful level of excitement and sense of specialness to the ceremony!

University Club in St Paul, MN

Here’s where we were – the beautiful University Club in St. Paul, MN (on Summit Ave., not to be confused with the University Club in downtown St. Paul at 340 Cedar Ave., which is another, related venue).

If you’re having a wedding ceremony, consider live music…it’s really something special. How often do we, as twenty-first-century Americans, get to hear music played in person, and especially an intimate quintet, playing music that was composed to be played in intimate surroundings, played as it’s meant to be played? We’re very lucky to live in a place and age when we get to hear such luxurious elegance!

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Gluten-free Minnesota wedding option

Where to get the best macaroons in Minnesota?

Wow, how often do you find something that you love, that is good for you? It’s funny, I eat gluten-free, and so many others do, too, but I’m also extremely into eating well. Just by chance, I found the most amazing option – the very BEST macarons (aka macaroons) in the Minneapolis, Minnesota area, from Nikkolette’s Macaroons. The best way to contact her is via her webpage or call her phone number at (651) 334-8821.
Gluten free macarons

I met Nikkolette at the Semple Mansion wedding fair in Minneapolis, and she is that rare kind of artisinal baker who really loves what she does. I had spent a month in Paris and really grew to love these unique desserts, and they are incredibly difficult to make – everything has to be just perfect in the baking process, and, of course, American ingredients are just different enough from French ingredients that a baker can’t use the same recipes. So Nikkolette has painstakingly recreated the process to work over here, and her macaron cookies are amazing! There is really nothing else like them, because anything store-bought just isn’t going to be very good. You know how there’s nothing to compare with coffee that is freshly ground, or artisinal butter/cheese, or bacon that is high-end? Yup, macarons are like that…there’s a wonderful variety of flavors, but everything has to be absolutely perfect to get the right results – and Nikkolette has done that. Well done! A perfect option for a unique alternative to wedding cake, or they can be the most amazing wedding favors you could possibly give. (Wedding cake is usually about $3.50 per slice, and the gift boxes shown above are about that price, too.)

Très magnifique!

Minneapolis Macarons from Nikkolette

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Semple Mansion Annual Wedding Event Sunday, 4/6/14

Wedding fair
Hello, Readers,

Coming up soon – Sunday April 4, 2014, the (free!) wedding fair at Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN. The hours are 11:00 am to 4:00 pm, and the address is 100 West Franklin Avenue, in the Uptown area of Minneapolis, just south of downtown.

Wedding at the Semple Mansion

 

Coppersmith photo of Semple Mansion wedding

 

Wedding fair
FYI, as a wedding vendor with a decade and a half’s worth of experience, and having been to every wedding fair/event in the area, personally, the Semple Mansion Wedding Fair is my favorite wedding event in the Minneapolis, MN, area – hope to see you there! Again, it’s Sunday, April 6th, 2014, 11am-4pm, at the Semple Mansion at 100 W. Franklin Ave. in Minneapolis.

All the best,

Rev. Tomkin

 

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Favorite Wedding Fair 2014? Semple Mansion

sempleinterior
Semple Mansion, site of upcoming wedding fair on Sunday, 4/6/14!

Semple Mansion

There’s several wedding fairs, AKA wedding spectaculars, in the Minneapolis, MN area, but which one should you go to? They tend to be early in the year, in the winter months, like January or February, so you can go to them, meet vendors, get ideas, in plenty of time for your wedding weekend. And what’s my favorite wedding fair in Minnesota? The 2014 Semple Mansion wedding Fair on Sunday, April 6th, 2014, from 11am-4pm, at 100 W. Franklin Ave. in Minneapolis, MN – and here’s why.

Wedding fair last year

Last year at the Semple Wedding fair – so much fun!

Have you ever hear of “right-sizing”? The idea is that when you are doing a wedding-related event, whether it’s looking at wedding gowns with your Maid of Honor, or doing a cake-tasting with your fiancé,  or checking out flowers with your mother, you want to feel special. It’s all about service – you want your wedding photographer to make you feel special, you want your venue to treat you like you’re important and special…it’s these people and the way you treat you that makes the experience fun and meaningful. And these qualities often come from having things be the right size – you want a wedding fair to be large enough to have  enough vendors for you to get a good idea of what’s available, but you don’t want it so huge that you’re just another customer, just another of the thousands of brides wandering around.  The Minneapolis, MN area is big enough that we can have really huge wedding events – but what people really want is a fair that is not only classy, but also friendly…and these elements only come into place wedding the wedding fair is the right size. I’ve been coming to Semple Mansion‘s wedding fair for years, and it is SO much fun! Free samples of food and cake, expert advice from photographers and florists, it’s a really open, easy, genuine event, where everyone winds up knowing each other, and a great deal of trust comes together. Feel free to stop by and say “Hi” if you see me, too – I’m always there!

The 2014 wedding fair will be held at the Semple Mansion, which is in the Uptown area of Minneapolis, MN, on Franklin Avenue, just west of Nicollet and a few blocks east of  Lyndale.


Semple Mansion Wedding Fair – Sunday, April 6th, 2014, 11am-4-pm
100 W. Franklin Ave, Minneapolis, MN

Map to the Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN

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Minneapolis Premarital Counseling

Premarital Counseling in Minnesota
Whether you are non-religious or religious, you can get $75 off your Minnesota marriage license by taking premarital counseling. The course I offer is two evenings, 60-90 minutes, for $395, and we meet at the University Club, 420 Summit Ave. in St. Paul. It’s a fun, easy way of learning more about your fiancé, an learning new communication techniques. Studies show that couples who do counseling before they get married are much more likely to stay married! :-)

Check out my website at http://www.beforeyourweddingday.com for more details on premarital counseling in Minnaepolis, MN – I look forward to hearing from you!

Best regards,
Rev. Tomkin Coleman

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New Wedding Consignment Shop in Osseo, MN

bridalaislemn

Question:

Hi Rev Tomkin Coleman,

My husband and I were married last year and are opening the premier wedding consignment store in central MN, opening in November 2013. Anything the wedding presents, we will have – please check out our website, www.bridalaislemn.com.

Feel free to come out and visit any time, and you’ll be our welcome guest!

Annette

—-

Annette Hall
Bridal Aisle Wedding Consignment
308 5th Ave. SE
Osseo, MN 55369
763.220.2319
www.bridalaislemn.com
info@bridalaislemn.com
Facebook: bridalaislemn.com
Pinterest: bridalaisle

Answer:

Dear Annette,

That’s wonderful! I look forward to the opening of your new store!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

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First Plus Size Dress Store in MN!

The Glass Slipper for plus-size brides, in Anoka, MN

Question:

Hello, I just read your recommendation for Luxe Bridal to a plus size woman in which you stated Luxe is the only store in Minnesota that specializes in plus size gowns.

I am sure you were given inaccurate information by someone as I am the manager of The Glass Slipper, and we opened in 2010 before Shayna at Luxe. In the future, I would welcome your recommendation as well. We are “nice” people as well, with high recommendations on Wedding Wire and Google.

Thanks and best regards,
Pat Ferguson
Owner and manager
The Glass Slipper
Anoka, MN
763-427-5600

Answer:

Good afternoon, Pat,

Thank you so much for your email, and I apologize for posting incorrect information.

I have now corrected the original post, plus put up this one, too!

Best regards,

Rev. Tomkin Coleman

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s, 2012’s, and 2013’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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GLBT Wedding Open House at Black Bear Crossings!

Wedding ceremony at Black Bear Crossings

Photos in front of Black Bear Crossings


The beautiful wedding venue, Black Bear Crossings at Como Lake in St. Paul, MN is celebrating Minnesota becoming the 12th state to legalize same sex marriage by having an Open House!

Black Bear Crossings’ Open House:
Wednesday, July 31st, 2013
6:30pm – 8:30 pm
1360 Lexington Pkwy N, St Paul, MN

At the open house, you can meet their event coordinators, ask questions, meet their preferred vendors and enjoy wine & hors d’oeuvres.

More information on their Facebook page or on their blog.


Open house at the Black Bear Crossings

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Where to get a MN marriage license?

Question:

Good afternoon, Rev. Tomkin!

My name is Natalia and my fiance and I are getting married at the end of this summer. I’ve found your website to be quite helpful on several different occasions, and I’m hoping you could help me with a couple MN marriage license questions, even though we’re not using your services? My fiance and I currently live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but will be getting married in Minneapolis. Where do we apply for and register our marriage license? And when should we apply?

Thank you so much for your help!

Best,

-Natalia Kushnir

Answer:

Good evening, Natalia,

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!

>>Where do we apply for and register our marriage license?
Some good places in Minneapolis are:

  • Hennepin County Government Center(Downtown Minneapolis), 300 South 6th Street, 1st floor, Minneapolis, (612) 348-8240, Open Monday – Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Brookdale Service Center – Brooklyn Center (Northern suburb), 6125 Shingle Creek Parkway, Brooklyn Center, Open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • Ridgedale Service Center – Minnetonka (Western suburb), 12601 Ridgedale Drive, Minnetonka, Open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • Southdale Service Center – Edina (Southern suburb), 7009 York Avenue South, Edina, Open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m
  • Maple Grove Service Center (Northwest suburb), 13720 Grove Drive, Maple Grove, Open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • Eden Prairie Service Center (Southwest suburb), 479 Prairie Center Drive. Eden Prairie, Open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

>>And when should we apply?
At least five days before your wedding (there’s a five-day waiting period).

I hope this helps!

Warm regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Weddings on a boat in Lake Minnetonka!

 

Lake Minnetonka wedding boat

Lady of the Lake, photo by Danielle Harms

Lake Minnetonka

Lake Minnetonka, photo by Jake Mohan

Dear Readers,

I just got a great phone call from Captain Terry of Lady on the Lake Cruises on Lake Minnetonka, MN. I love performing wedding ceremonies on his gorgeous boat (some info about the Lady of the Lake is on my matrix of wedding venues and also on his website.

You’ve got a couple options if you’d like to rent this beautiful Lake Minnetonka charter boat – you can either have your wedding ceremony at your church and then have your reception on the boat, or you can have your wedding ceremony right there on the boat (and then the cruise starts, and your cocktail hour and reception begins!)


Captain Terry from Lady of the Lake on Lake Minnetonka
Captain Terry

Lake Minnetonka from the boat

Lake Minnetonka as seen from the boat, photo by Shilad Sen

Wedding on a boat on Lake Minnetonka

Lake Minnetonka wedding, photo by Sam Kronick

Having your wedding reception on a boat on Lake Minnetonka is a gorgeous and unique way to celebrate! The website is Lady of the Lake – note, you could also rent the boat as a rehearsal dinner venue!

I hope this helps!

-Rev. Tomkin

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2013 Apple Valley MN Wedding reception venue still available!

Valleywood Golf Course
Valleywood Golf Course in Apple Valley, MN for weddings
Dear Rev. Tomkin Coleman,

Are any of your brides looking for a Minnesota wedding venue that still has a few Saturday afternoons available? We have a new banquet facility in Apple Valley, MN, the Valleywood Golf Course, and as of 6/10/13, we currently have several openings this year which would be available for any last-minute wedding ceremonies and receptions.

  • Our seating capacity for an indoor seated wedding reception is 176.
  • Our site rental fee for a Saturday in warm weather is $175 per hour for banquet room, $75 per hour for the gazebo
  • We do our own on-site catering.
  • We also have a full bar.

Please have brides contact me at 952-953-2335 for additional information!

Thank you,

Marguerite Bergien
Valleywood Golf Course
4851 McAndrews Rd.
Apple Valley, MN 55124


Valleywood Golf Course in Apple Valley, MN
Valleywood Golf Course in Apple Valley, MN

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Shout-out to the awesome Gina Kieffer!

Amazing photographer Gina Kieffer

I love how the Twin Cities is big, but is also such a small town!

Congrats to Gina and Andrew on nine years of happy marriage (I officiated their wonderful wedding back in the day) and it was so great to reunite with Gina at a wedding at the University Club this weekend! Gina is an amazing photographer, runs A Truth Be Shown Wedding Photography and she shot the wedding I officiated for this weekend. Gina’s a wonderful, sweet, engaging, lively woman (who loves dogs!), with the following photography awards (amazing, isn’t it?):

Check out her website or blog – they’re both great fun!

Hope to work with you again soon, Gina – and hugs to Andrew! (And to Megan and Jeff, too, next time you see them!)

Photography with Gina Kieffer

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Our personal photos from amazing photographer from MN – Lisa Venticinque!

Tomkin and Julie Coleman

Tomkin and Julie Coleman with dogs

Tomkin and Julie Coleman in love

Hi Rev. Tomkin!

I just wanted to say thanks to you and Julie for a most wonderful time on Monday morning. I really loved meeting you and spending time with you guys- thanks for the warm reception!

I will send the gallery link to you as soon as possible (I’m thinking by tomorrow afternoon). But in the meantime, here are a few shots to let you see what they’re looking like. I am thinking you all look BEAUTIFUL and so happy! I’m kind of in love with Bailey’s smile.

Have a great day today- it is GORGEOUS! Please pass on my greetings and thanks to Julie. I’ll be back in touch soon!

Ciao!

Lisa V

Lisa Venticinque Photography
Lisa Venticinque Photography

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How to find an amazing photographer in Minneapolis, MN

MN wedding photographer Lisa Venticinque
Note that the above photo is shot by me, not by Lisa – hers are so much better, and you’ll see them in the next blogpost!

Dear Readers,

In the past, you’ve read about my criteria for a wedding photographer, who I recommend, and why. Basically, in addition to checking out their website to making sure you like their style, and checking to make sure they’ve shot a decent amount of weddings (20 minimum), the main thing from my point of view is to make sure you really like them personally. Getting along with your wedding photographer is such a big deal – it’s their personality that will set the tone for so much of your wedding day because you spend so many hours with them, and it’s their experience with social skills involving all sorts of relatives and loved ones (who may be under great stress) that makes the day-of wedding shoot go smoothly and easily (and can even be great fun!)

But how to know if your wedding photographer is that nice, that personable, listens that well to what your saying, and has the social skills and people experience (in addition to all the technical knowledge?) Well, an interview really helps, but so does a personal recommendation, and let me give you mine. In the Minneapolis, MN, area, I have worked with many wedding photographers on a professional basis, but I finally got to work with one personally, Lisa Venticinque Wedding Photography. She’s not only got degrees in photography, and studied in London, and shot hundreds of weddings…she not only loves doing weddings (so many photographers burn out but not her – she loves people), she is an incredible person. Lisa came to our house and talked to us like people, like friends, and we became good friends! She then talked to us about what kind of photos we’d like, what kinds of attitudes we had towards things, and man, the photo shoot was SO fun! I completely recommend Lisa 100% if you are looking for a wedding photographer in Minneapolis – she’s fun, super-experienced, and has and AMAZING sense of style! Your photographs from your wedding are the one of the few things you get to keep permanently as a reminder of that day, and if they’re good photos, they bring back all sorts of amazing memories that otherwise would be lost – and a great photographer can make you look like you’re in a magazine…Lisa Venticinque’s work is incredible, and she’s an incredible person!

Stay tuned for the photos she shot!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin


St Paul wedding photographer Lisa Venticinque

St Paul, MN wedding photographer Lisa Venticinque

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Remember – possible backlash to gay weddings in Minnesota

Happy people - but beware the backlash to gay weddings in MN

Amazing dancer Nic Lincoln in Minneapolis, MN

Photo by V.P. Virtucio

Photo by V.P. Virtucio

Dear Readers,

I just saw a great night of dance (like ballet, but different) by the amazing Nic Lincoln, who is an artist/dancer/activist and he raised a warning about the wonderful new law allowing gay marriage in the state of Minnesota. Nic Lincoln talked about the inevitable backlash that comes when rights are extended to minorities. Now, I wasn’t around during the civil rights advances of the 1960s, but I remember when Obama was first elected, and I definitely felt the zeitgeist was that since we’ve elected an African-American president, that example of open-mindedness means there’s no racism left in America (which was subsequently proved wrong).

So, maybe you know all these facts and have heard these warnings before, but they came as a wake-up call to me. I’m not that political, so I hadn’t thought through this ramification. Sigh…two steps forward, one step back (and actually, Nic Lincoln used the phrase “one step forward, two steps back”.)

All the best, my friends – let’s keep each other in our prayers.

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Open letter to all couples for gay weddings I’ve performed in Minnesota

Gay weddings legal in MN

To all gay and lesbian couples I’ve officiated weddings for in the last fifteen years in Minnesota:

Congratulations on Minnesota passing the same-sex marriage bill! I’ve emailed and phoned many of you, the couples I’ve performed commitment ceremonies for (weddings in all but name), but I’ve had difficulty finding some of you – especially when trying to contact couples from the late 90s, I realize that it’s hard! We not only didn’t have Facebook back then, but also emails back in the day tended to be from your work or from some ancient provider like aol, and so many people have switched jobs and homes…

So – whether I’ve been able to contact you or not, this is an open letter – feel free to call or email me:

  • I’d be proud and happy to sign your marriage license for your wedding ceremony I performed all those years ago!
  • And if you’d like a renewal of vows ceremony, that would be free of charge, too – a wonderful celebration of your years together!

Thinking of you, my friends, on this happy summer!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
612.986.5528
wedding@mnminister.com

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The Transition for an Officiant for Gay Weddings in Minnesota

Gay marriage in MN now legal

What a year!

Here’s some fun logistical thoughts about the soon-to-be-voted-on Gay Marriage Law in Minnesota: It was only a couple weeks ago that I had met with a wonderful gay couple to be an officiant for their wedding this summer…and now it looks like what was officially going to be a “commitment ceremony” will actually be a wedding after all! Or wait…if they get married in June, they’ll still have to sign the papers in August to make it legal (assuming they want to)…wow, it just shows how odd it is that same-sex couples can get married in some places, not in others, be legal in some states, and not in others. I only wish that Minnesota had done it earlier (Iowa? Really?), but better late than never.

And here’s another thought – I’ve performed dozens of gay weddings in Minnesota up till now throughout the last two decades(!), but up till now they’ve always been looked at by the state as “just commitment ceremonies” (even though they were weddings). So each of these couples will still have to go through the paperwork if they want to make it official. So I’ll be contacting each one of them as soon as the law passes, and see if they want me to help them get their marriage license signed! Or maybe they’ll want another small ceremony, just with a few close loved ones? Hmm…this is a historic time, never to be repeated again. It will be interesting to see how the next few months go.

Commitment ceremony - now a gay wedding in MN!

My sisters’s commitment ceremony in NY – now (another?) gay wedding in MN?

And my sister! Wow, so Jen got married here (my father and I officiated), but it wasn’t “legal” (sigh), and then they moved from DC to New York, got married in upstate New York one weekend when a small-town mayor was doing gay weddings for a weekend (but then he had to stop). And now gay weddings are legal in that state, but in the meantime she moved to Portland with her wife, and gay marriages aren’t legal there (sigh). But when they visit friends back in NYC, they’re married…and soon when they visit back home in Minnesota, they’ll soon be married here. Right? Because they got married in New York? Or does that particular one not count, either, because it was too soon? Wow, will they now have to get married in Minnesota a second time so they’ll have benefits here when they’re visiting? So they won’t be married at home, but when they’re here, they’re married? And will they want a wedding in Oregon when it (eventually) becomes legal there? That’s a lot of weddings!

I’m trying to keep things light-hearted – this is a time for celebration!

Welcome to equality in Minnesota!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin Coleman

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Minnesota name change checklist for new brides

Free new bride name change checklist

Question:

Hello Reverend!

You have a great free new-bride name change kit, but I made another online resource for local brides, too! I am the graphic designer for Brovado Weddings, a Minneapolis-based wedding photography company. I have recently spent a few weeks of research to compile a detailed and complete Post-Wedding Name Change Checklist for brides, and I’ve made it into a written article, complete with graphics. We would like to share it with you in hopes that you can either use it on your website, or add a link to the article to better serve your clients.

This is an invaluable resource for brides. After I got married, I spent an obnoxious amount of time looking for a complete checklist that would help me go about changing my name on everything that mattered. I got so frustrated with the lack of information on the web, that I decided to compile my own list and put it online for other new brides! This article is a huge help and time saver for recently married couples. I know your clients would appreciate it!

Thank you, and God bless!


Elizabeth Fillmore
Executive Assistant
Brovado Media Inc.
Cell: 612-242-8655
www.BrovadoWeddings.com

Answer:

Good afternoon, Elizabeth,

Wow, what a GREAT resource! Thank you for creating it, and thank you for letting me know (so I can tell all my readers, too!) You (and www.BrovadoWeddings.com are amazing!)

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

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McNamara Alumni Center – officially coolest place to get married in MN

McNamara Center for weddings in MN

Photos courtesy of Bellagala

Question:

Dear Rev. Tomkin,

It was so nice to see you yesterday! Yes, as we talked about, Buzzfeed has named the McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis, MN as one of the top ten coolest place to get married in the US!

Looking forward to working with you again this summer – we love when you officiate a wedding at McNamara!

Thanks!
Amy

Amy Leyden | Director of Sales & Marketing

McNamara Alumni Center
200 Oak St. SE, Suite 100 | Minneapolis, MN 55455
Direct: 612.625.8876 | Office: 612.624.9831 | Fax: 612.625.5400
Winner of Best Meeting Facility (Non-Hotel) 2007-2011
Minnesota Meetings and Events magazine

Answer:

Dear Amy,

That’s so wonderful! I love that McNamara is getting the recognition it deserves – it’s an amazing Minneapolis wedding venue, and couples LOVE it! The site is breathtaking, your staff is top-notch, the food is incredible – I love it! All three spaces for wedding ceremonies work really well, and it’s so nice that there is the different options for both big and small weddings. It’s great working in such a well-designed facility, that not only is the McNamara Alumni Center well-thought-out, with design that makes everything easy for both guests and wedding party, but is also so aesthetically exciting (and beautiful).

Looking forward to a great 2013!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Weddings at the outstanding McNamara Center on the University of Minnesota campus

The McNamara Alumni Center – named the coolest wedding venue in Minnesota by Buzzfeed!

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Great St. Paul MN Wedding Photographer

Lisa Venticinque Photography

Question:

Dear Rev. Tomkin,

Thank you for your wonderful compliments about my work! Per your request, here’s some more information about my wedding photography at Lisa25 in St. Paul, MN.

I’m a photographer who LOVES my work, and I’ve been shooting weddings since 2000. Over the years, I have slowly been transitioning into my favorite niche: unique, meaningful weddings with people who are happy to celebrate their love and network of relationships in their lives. I’m the Minnesota wedding photographer who tries to reflect who people are and how they feel; I’m not so into the glamour and the things that are currently trending in a lot of weddings. I love people, and I love to be amidst the buzz of emotion that is so present on wedding days. I strive to honor people in the way that I reflect their experience, and my ultimate goal is to reflect each person’s unique beauty.

Looking forward to seeing you for coffee – and at weddings!

Sincerely,

Lisa Venticinque
www.Lisa25.com

MN wedding photographer

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Recommendation for Sandy May Photography


The amazing Sandy May wedding photography, in the Minneapolis, MN area

The amazing Sandy May wedding photography, in the Minneapolis, MN area!



Question:

Hello Rev. Tomkin,

Just saw a great dog photo of yours on FB and wanted to say hello after working with me on a few weddings the last few years. You may know that I live and shoot weddings in Jamaica 6 months of the year, but come back every year for the summer/fall season in Minneapolis, MN.

Just a reminder to you that I will be back after May 7th, 2013, and if you know of any last minute couples that are looking for their wedding photographer in the Minneapolis, MN area, please remember me as I am hoping to pick up a few more weddings this summer.

You can check out my recent work at http://www.sandymayphoto.com .

Also, I also have been meaning to congratulate you on being ‘Officiant of the Year’ so many times. You deserve it and I know that I have really enjoyed the sensitive way that you manage your wedding ceremonies. Great work and lucky brides and grooms!

We have 4 dogs too…indeed our best friends!

Blessings,

Sandy
www.sandymayphoto.com

Answer:

Good evening, Sandy,

So good to hear from you! You are a fantastic wedding photographer, an yes, I’ll definitely put out the word to couples I work with!

Looking forward to working with you again!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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2013 Semple Mansion Wedding Fair rocked!

Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN - available for wedding ceremonies and receptions - throws an amazing wedding fair each year!

Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN – available for wedding ceremonies and receptions – throws an amazing wedding fair each year!

The 2013 wedding fair at the Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN was amazing – fun, interesting, friendly, full of good food and cheerful brides. I love this wedding fair because it’s such a great size – large enough that there’s tons of vendors, but small enough not to get overwhelmed.

Benjamin Keller Photography - wonderful work, and an awesome guy!

Benjamin Keller Photography – wonderful work, and an awesome guy!

I’ve worked with Benjamin Keller before on weddings, but I loved getting to spend some actual time with him at the wedding fair, talking about his work and getting to know him more as a person. A couple who is getting married spends so much time with their wedding photographer, it’s good to know that he’s a fun, interesting, mature guy – as well as a great photographer!

Some of the flowers displayed by MBZ Design and Events in Minneapolis, MN. I had never seen this kind of roses before - gorgeous!

Some of the flowers displayed by MBZ Design and Events in Minneapolis, MN. I had never seen this kind of roses before – gorgeous!

Boy, I usually think I know wedding flowers pretty well, but it’s not like the knowledge of people who work with them every day. MBZ Design and Events Studio had these amazing roses out – have you ever seen anything like them? Gorgeous!

Eric Sandstrom from Floral Logic (which is in the Semple Mansion), shows off his new puppy. Such a cutie!

Eric Sandstrom from Floral Logic (which is in the Semple Mansion), shows off his new puppy. Such a cutie!

Floral Logic does great work with wedding flowers, plus, I now am friends with him through all the weddings we’ve worked on together. Here’s Eric, the owner – with his new puppy!

By popular demand, here's a close-up of his sleeping puppy. Not just a dachshund, not just a dachshund puppy, but a sleeping dachshund puppy.

By popular demand, here’s a close-up of his sleeping puppy. Not just a dachshund, not just a dachshund puppy, but a sleeping dachshund puppy.

Okay, I just had to put in another photo of the pup. SO cute!

I've talked about Premier Catering before - they are wonderful! Their specialty is adjusting everything to your needs, so instead of using stock menus, they make sure everything meets your needs, budget, taste, and style. Great people, too!

I’ve talked about Premier Catering before – they are wonderful! Their specialty is adjusting everything to your needs, so instead of using stock menus, they make sure everything meets your needs, budget, taste, and style. Great people, too!

Premier Catering in Minneapolis, MN does fantastic work, and I was really lucky to have a booth right next to them at the Semple Mansion wedding fair. They were serving sweet potato shooters, which was so great, after all the other sweets – savory, a little sweet, and SO good! Love the Premier Catering!

The top floor of the Semple Mansion is amazing - this picture gives you a hint of how great it looks!

The top floor of the Semple Mansion is amazing – this picture gives you a hint of how great it looks!

Here’s a final send-off picture – isn’t the top floor of Semple Mansion amazing? Most Minneapolis and St. Paul mansions have to have a separate banquet hall, but Semple’s is built-in…their third-floor is this amazing period piece, a ballroom that is breathtakingly beautiful!

Hope to see you at the Semple Mansion wedding fair in early 2014!

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

The amazing Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN - available for rental for weddings!

The amazing Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN – available for rental for weddings!

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Gorgeous renovations at the St. Paul College Club

St Paul College Club on gorgeous Summit Ave.

St Paul College Club on gorgeous Summit Avenue
in St. Paul, MN

spccbackyard

The outdoor wedding ceremony space at the St. Paul College Club

spccballroom

Question:

Rev. Coleman,
Good Morning! This is Lauren with the St. Paul College Club. I hope this e-mail finds you well!

Just some news about our wedding reception venue in St. Paul, MN:

  • We have a new event coordinator, Beata Vanderzee.
  • Our Living Room has changed quite a bit in the last few months (we’ve added floor to ceiling curtains, two new chandeliers, new fireplace décor, wood flooring instead of carpet, re-carpeted the staircase, new curtains in the sunroom, etc.).

I think that’s it! Thank you very much – and once again, we cannot express how thrilled we consistently are to have you perform weddings at the St. Paul College Club!

Thank You!

Lauren Wills
St. Paul College Club
651-227-4477
lauren@stpaulcollegeclub.com

Answer:

Good afternoon, Lauren,

Wow, thank you for all the kind words – and all the great new photos and info! Your info and pics have now all been updated on my page about wedding receptions in the Minneapolis, MN area.

Looking forward to many more weddings at your wonderful, well-run, beautiful St. Paul College Club!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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2013 Semple Wedding Fair

Semple Mansion in the winter

Semple Mansion Wedding Fair – This Sunday, March 24th, 2013
12-4pm, 100 W. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis, MN

Wedding Fair at Semple Mansion

Dear Readers: I tell you, one of the best parts of being engaged is going to a wedding fair – free food, people are excited and happy, you get to spend time with your partner (or friend, or mother) in an atmosphere that’s celebratory – how much fun is that? If you’re in the Minneapolis, MN area and are free this Sunday (or even if aren’t free, but can change your plans!), I highly recommend coming to the amazing wedding fair at Semple Mansion this Sunday, March 24th, 2013, noon-4pm. Here’s the deal about wedding fairs – about half the people there will be interested in renting the Semple Mansion, the other half will be brides and grooms who might already have their wedding reception site lined up already, but want to check out photographers, DJs, caterers, or other vendors. So you don’t have to be having your wedding at the place you’re going to the wedding fair – they’re just hosting it.

 

And the Semple Mansion fair is AWESOME! It’s really classy, everyone’s in a good mood, and the most important thing about picking a

Top of the stairs at Semple Mansion

wedding vendor is do you like them personally (after all, you’re going to be spending a lot of time with them). And a wedding fair is a perfect time for this, just a time to chat and get to know people. Or, if you want, just smile, eat, and look at the pretty brochures and flowers and cake displays – it’s all fun!

The FREE Semple Mansion Wedding Fair is Sunday, March 24, 2013, 12:00pm until 4:00pm.

 


Weddings at Semple Mansion

Credit: Bellagala Photography


Multiple shots of a wedding at the Semple Mansion
This Sunday, 3/24/13, from 12-4pm at 100 W. Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis, is the Semple Mansion Wedding Fair. Feel free to visit www.semplemansion.com to find out more.

No charge for admission for this Sunday’s wedding fair, and free parking – you can come and explore all three levels inside the Semple Mansion in Minneapolis, MN and discover many of the best local wedding professionals all under one very impressive roof!

At the wedding fair will be wedding planners, photographers, florists, make-up artists, stationery vendors, caterers, fashion – and more!

Sunday, March 24th, 2013, 12-4pm, Semple Mansion, 100 West Franklin Ave. in Minneapolis!

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

Semple Mansion in Minneapolis

Hope to see you there!

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Carlson Towers for weddings in Minnetonka, MN area

Carlson Towers in Minneapolis, MN

Question:

From Carlson TowersHi, Rev. Tomkin,

How are things? Is your 2013 wedding season going to be busy? I hope so. Looking forward to having you perform more wedding ceremonies here at the Carlson Towers in Minnetonka MN this year!

We love referring couples to you, and it would be great to talk to you again – do you have time to come over and have lunch with us?

Let me know and thank you,

Dawn

Dawn Crawford Dacut │ Carlson Center Event Sales Director │ Bon Appétit Management Company
Phone: 763.212.1448 │ Fax: 763.212.2490 │ E-Mail: dcrawford@carlson.com
Address: 701 Carlson Parkway │ MS# 8240 │ Minnetonka │ MN │ 55305
Website: www.carlsoncenterevents.com
http://www.facebook.com/carlsoncenterevents

Answer:

Dear Dawn,

It was so great to see you, and to meet Kirsten! Wow, you do amazing work at the Carlson Towers and I love it when I get to perform wedding ceremonies in the gorgeous amphitheater. The venue is so gorgeous, and the amazing amphitheater and lake are unique – it’s like an oasis of tranquility, and yet the wedding party and guests are right here in the Twin Cities, with easy access to I-454 and I-394. Thanks so much for lunch, as always, you serve fantastic food! I’m such a foodie, it’s getting that I only really enjoy the really good stuff – and man, your chefs are the best! I love that you’ve created a brand-new menu for brides and that you’re filling up with weddings so quickly. Of course, so many couples want the Saturday weddings, it’s nice that you have special prices for Friday weddings, too! Such a great lunch – the easy, free parking, the friendly staff, the gorgeous venue…here’s a picture of the Carlson Towers in Minnetonka, MN during the winter – such an amazing view! Most of my wedding ceremonies there are in the summer – more couples should get married in winter at the Carlson Towers and get that great view! :-)


Winter at the Carlson Towers

Thanks so much, and I’m looking to many more wedding ceremonies at the Carlson Towers!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Semple Mansion Wedding Fair – 2013!

Dear Readers,

Getting married this year (or next?) in the Minneapolis, MN area? Here’s a fantastic recommendation!

Semple Mansion Wedding Fair - Sunday, 3/24/13 noon - 4pm

The Semple Mansion Wedding Fair
Sunday, 3/24/13 noon – 4pm – free!
Location: 100 W. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis, MN




I’ve gone every year to the Semple Mansion Wedding Fair in Minneapolis, MN, and just love it – and I think you will, too! The March 24th, 2013 fair will have food, wine, vendors, fun people, incredibly beautiful venue, and just south of downtown Minneapolis, right by Uptown, just east of the Lakes. Semple Mansion puts together amazing events, and you get a great preview by coming to the show. Unlike other wedding events, there’s no admission charge, and it’s not just in a big empty event center – it’s at their gorgeous 19th century mansion. Even if you’re not using the Mansion for your event, it’s fun to visit anyway because of all the vendors – cakes, coffee, music, flowers…it’s really incredible to see all this in person. You can only get so much from pictures on the web, you know? Anyway, the best part of any vendor is when you meet them in person – that’s the way to really know if you want to work with them.

Some of the new rooms the Semple Mansion now has include the Wine Grotto, Billiards Room, and Copper Lounge, which are all on display.


This room is Semple Mansion's "Wine Grotto" - it's an antique walk-in safe that's huge, surrounded by old brickwork (and wine!) Great for cocktail hour after your wedding ceremony.

For instance, this room is Semple Mansion’s “Wine Grotto” – it’s an amazing antique, walk-in safe that’s huge, surrounded by old brickwork (and wine!) Great for cocktail hour after your wedding ceremony.

One of my favorite caterers in Minneapolis, Fabulous Catering, is sure to be there, with lots of samples! MAN, are they good!

One of my favorite caterers in Minneapolis, Fabulous Catering, is sure to be at the Semple Mansion wedding fair, with lots of samples! MAN, are they good!
There’s wedding caterers on both the second and the top floor (the top floor is where the gorgeous ballroom is, where the wedding receptions are held).

That's me with one of the vendors, Gateaux Bakery, from one of the previous events - I tell you, you've got to check out this wedding fair - it's incredible to see all this work close-up!

That’s me with one of the vendors, Gateaux Bakery, from a couple years ago – I tell you, you’ve got to check out this wedding fair at the Semple Mansion– it’s incredible to see all this beautiful work close-up!



Everyone having a good time at last year's event. This year promises to be event better, with more vendors and more spaces open!

Everyone having a good time at last year’s event. This year promises to be event better, with more vendors and more spaces open!


If you have never seen this breathtaking venue before, and want to talk to vendors one-on-one, come check it out in a relaxed, yet classy atmosphere!

If you have never seen this breathtaking venue before, and want to talk to vendors one-on-one, come check out the Semple Mansion Wedding Fair in a relaxed, yet classy atmosphere!


Again, the date for the 2013 Semple Mansion wedding fair is:
– Sunday, March 24th, 2013
– From 12:00 noon – 4pm
– At the Semple Mansion
– 100 W. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis, MN.
– Free admission and free parking!

Hope to see you there!

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

PS: Here's one of their new rooms - the bridal suite on the top floor, available to the bride and her attendants to get ready before a wedding ceremony!

PS: Here’s one of their new rooms – the Semple Mansion’s bridal suite on the top floor, available to the bride and bridal attendants to get ready before a wedding ceremony!


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Graves 601 Hotel for Weddings

New! Just published an amazing review of the Graves 601 Hotel in Minneapolis, MN, and how it can be used for wedding ceremonies and/or wedding receptions.


Wedding at Graves 601 Hotel

At a wedding ceremony I performed at the Graves 601 Hotel in downtown Minneapolis in their main ballroom. The cocktail hour was in the adjoining lobby, with dinner back in this room. Gorgeous, classy wedding!



Perhaps my favorite place for a wedding ceremony and reception is at a hotel – all the wedding guests get to hang out together all weekend, and no one has to travel the ceremony site, and there’s no commuting between the ceremony and reception. A wedding is all about the people, and when it’s at a hotel, everyone gets to be with each other whenever they want. I was so lucky to get a tour of the amazing Graves 601 Hotel in downtown Minneapolis, which is on First Avenue, right across the street from the Target Center. Click on my weddings at Minneapolis hotels page for the full review.

Outside the Graves 601, a new, modern, and hip hotel in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, MN

Outside the Graves 601, a new, modern, and hip hotel in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, MN

 

Another shot of the exterior of the Graves 601 Hotel, from Bellagala Photography, www.bellagala.com

Another shot of the exterior of the Graves 601 Hotel, from Bellagala Photography, www.bellagala.com



How to describe the Graves 601 Hotel? Well, first of all, everything is high-class and top-notch…the staff there is incredible, and the site is beautiful. Check out these pictures to help get an idea of the gorgeous stylishness:

One of the amazing sculptures in the Graves 601's gorgeous lobbys.

One of the amazing sculptures in the Graves 601’s gorgeous lobbys.

Graves 601 wedding

The gorgeous ballroom of the Graves 601 Hotel, all lit up by the Instant Request DJ service. Photo from Instant Request – http://www.instantrequest.com

 

The Graves 601 Hotel is home to what many foodies (including myself) think is the best restaurant in Minneapolis - Cosmos Restaurant

The Graves 601 Hotel is home to what many foodies (including myself) think is the best restaurant in Minneapolis – Cosmos Restaurant

Also at the Graves 601 Hotel is the amazing bar and restaurant, the Craftstreet Bradhouse. Either Cosmos or the Craftstreet Bradhouse are wonderful places for a rehearsal dinner.

Also at the Graves 601 Hotel is the amazing bar and restaurant, the Craftstreet Bradhouse. Either Cosmos or the Craftstreet Bradhouse are wonderful places for a rehearsal dinner.



If you’re looking for a high-end wedding venue in Minneapolis, Minnesota, one that can handle either a small wedding or a large one, a site that will pamper your guests and make everything go smoothly on your big day, a venue that can house your guests all weekend in a place that’s gorgeous, modern, and hip, my first recommendation would be the Graves 601 Hotel for your wedding!

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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McNamara Wedding Showcase was AMAZING!

Photos courtesy of D'Amico Catering and la Vie Photography - laviephotography.com

The 2013 Wedding Showcase at the McNamara Event Center in Minneapolis, MN, by the U of M.
Photos courtesy of D’Amico Catering and la Vie Photography – laviephotography.com


What a fun night! The annual wedding fair at the McNamara Center is my favorite – it’s set in this gorgeous site, the food is amazing, and there’s a real sense of celebration and fun. The McNamara Event Center is unique in the Twin Cities because of the coordinators – they really help out the brides and grooms they work with to make sure everything goes smoothly. (Usually a reception site has just one coordinator, who is the catering manager). Their wedding fair takes so much prep, and it really shows – all the little details are taken care of with perfection, and it becomes so classy and fun. I’ve performed many wedding ceremonies there, both in the big room and in one of the smaller rooms, and couples love it. The place is beautiful enough that it doesn’t need decoration (although it looks great decorated, too), and then the cocktail hour and wedding reception is held there, too.

Some of the fantastic food at the McNamara Wedding Showcase by award-winning D'Amico

Some of the fantastic food at the McNamara Wedding Showcase by award-winning D’Amico


I’m a huge foodie, and LOVE D’Amico – one way to tell how great they are even before you taste their food is knowing about all the chefs and D’Amico itself who have been nominated for James Beard awards…not to mention all the MN Bride and MN Meetings and Events Magazine awards that both D’Amico and the McNamara Center have won.

D'Amico kind of blew my mind - they are fantastic chefs!

D’Amico kind of blew my mind – they are fantastic chefs!

Dance lessons - isn't that cool?

Dance lessons – isn’t that cool?

And that's me! Rev. Tomkin, taking a break to chat up the chefs and sample the food (oh, man...I loved it!)

And that’s me! Rev. Tomkin, taking a break to chat up the chefs and sample the food (oh, man…I loved it!)

Ooh, I love it that they got a pic of me, too! I was chatting with the chef here, and between this one and several others I learned about their salted-caramel chocolates (with glitter…wow!), and about the proper temperature for roast beef and lamb (oh, man…men love good meat!), and one chef let me bring home two of the above chocolates to my wife. She loved, loved, loved them both!

Isn't the McNamara Center gorgeous?

Isn’t the McNamara Center gorgeous?

One of the wedding ceremony spaces at the McNamara

One of the wedding ceremony spaces at the McNamara

The amazing wedding coordinators at the McNamara Event Center!

Amy Leyden and the amazing wedding coordinators at the McNamara Event Center!

When the McNamara does weddings, sometimes they set up this amazing tulle...

When the McNamara does weddings, sometimes they set up this amazing tulle…

This is the big space, and one of the smaller rooms is above – you can choose either one, but their both gorgeous. Some couples have their wedding ceremony at a church and then have the reception here, but the weddings I’ve been involved with all had both the ceremony and reception at the McNamara (which was quite nice, because then their guests didn’t have to travel between the ceremony and reception). Note that there’s a tunnel that goes directly to the hotel next door…one of my favorite things about this site!

Looking forward to seeing you there next year! (The McNamara Wedding Showcase is always in early January.)

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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My favorite Minneapolis wedding fair!



2013 McNamara Alumni Center’s Wedding Showcase
Wednesday evening, January 9th, 2013
From 5:30 till 8:00 pm



Getting married in 2013? Well, in addition to buying lots of wedding magazines, or watching “Bridesmaids”, or getting together with girlfriends, one of the most fun parts of being engaged is going to a bridal fair. My favorite one in the Minneapolis MN area is the Bridal Showcase at the McNamara Alumni Center in the University of Minnesota area. It’s a gorgeous site, with angled walls and windows, plus many extra beautiful rooms for cocktail hours, wedding receptions, or wedding ceremonies. I’ve performed wedding ceremonies in all the spaces, and been to many of the annual shows, and they’re amazing – the food is incredible, the vendors are so much fun.

The McNamara Center in Minneapolis is unique in that the venue has many “wedding coordinators”, staff who really make your wedding weekend go smoothly and easily. Having an assigned coordinator to work with you throughout the planning process is a really big deal, and they’ve done so many weddings that they really know what they’re doing. And you also are assigned a coordinator from D’Amico Catering to take care of things related to food and beverages. These 2 wedding coordinators focus on you and your unique needs. Amy Leyden is the head of the department, and she really sets the tone – classy, friendly, warm, and incredibly knowledgeable. So not only is the site really beautiful, the whole weekend goes smoothly as a result of their care and attention.


Wedding ceremonies and receptions aren’t just held in the large main room – the McNamara Alumni Center has some wonderful, more intimate spaces, too!


Ooh, I almost forgot – the Radisson hotel next door is connected via a tunnel with the McNamara, and thus you wedding guests can stay there and socialize the weekend of your wedding.



The McNamara’s Wedding Showcase in Minnepolis, MN is held on a Wednesday evening, January 9th, 2013, from 5:30 till 8:00 pm. The address is 200 Oak Street SE in Minneapolis, MN, but you may want to use the address of their parking garage, which is 1926 University Ave. SE, Minneapolis, MN. Here’s a downloadable map, if that helps.

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Rev. Tomkin
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Video of Rev. Tomkin Coleman performing a wedding ceremony

Question:

Hi Rev. Tomkin,

At the recent wedding where we worked together, I promised to provide you a copy of the wedding video. This YouTube video is the full ceremony unedited, and a nice clip of it is here.

Looking forward to working with you again!

Thanks,
Craig Julliie
MN Videography
Memories in High Definition

Answer:

Good afternoon, Craig,

Wow, thank you for sharing this video! You do amazing work. It’s funny, I tell couples that while a wedding video seems like such an easy thing to cut out because of budget concerns, it’s rather ironic, because a good wedding video is THE BEST memory you can possibly have of the big day! Once everyone has gone home and you continue your daily life, there’s some still pictures, but wow, there’s nothing like video to really bring the memories back full-force. Most often for the bride and groom, the whole day is just a happy blur, but with a wedding video, you actually get a sense of what the ceremony was like, what the cocktail hour, and dinner, and toasts, and dancing was like…how the guests felt, who was there, everything. I highly recommend your Minnesota wedding videography work – you do an amazing job!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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TreVeld Musicians for Weddings in MN


Here’s the TreVeld wedding trio, getting ready for the wedding ceremony I performed two weekends ago at the Nicollet Island Pavilion – they’re terrific!


For a funky, fun sound at your MN wedding - TreVeld
TreVeld Wedding Musicians in Minneapolis, MN



The amazing TreVeld trio – here, they’re playing at a church, but I heard them at a wedding…wow!!!

Wow, I have to let you know all about this amazing band who played at a wedding I just performed a ceremony for, at the Nicollet Island Pavilion – the amazing TreVeld trio of violin, bass, and guitar. They were fun, lively, and had incredible music – how to describe them, though? It’s funny, my world is words, not music, but this band really got to me, and I don’t even have the right words to describe them! Jazzy? Well, no, it wasn’t jazz like Coltrane… Funky? Well, no, it wasn’t like Prince… Their music gave me the feelings that a bluegrass or Dixieland band gives me (fun, exciting, celebrational), yet they weren’t those genres, either! The name “TreVeld” comes from “three” and “fields” (veld?), which seems to be not just the blending of the three musicians, but at least three genres of music. “Spirited” – perhaps that’s the best way to describe their wonderful music?

The best way to get to know the TreVeld musicians is to just listen to them here – I bet you’ll love them as much as I did! It’s not your usual string trio, and if you are looking for something top-notch, A+, and non-traditional, they’re perfect for high-class weddings, funk weddings, and everything in between – I’m a huge fan!

Wedding musician trio, TreVeld

Check out their Facebook page, too – it’s quite fun!

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Cosmos in Minneapolis

Cosmos Restaurant

Cosmos in Minneapolis – Photo by Tom Wallace at VitaMN – Tom Wallace also does wedding photography, and his website is http://www.tomwallacephotography.com



Wow – Cosmos in Minneapolis, MN, in the Graves 601 Hotel at 601 North 1st Avenue, is absolutely amazing. The restaurant is an upper floor at the upscale Graves 601 Hotel on 1st Avenue in downtown Minneapolis.

I first heard of Cosmos when I was taking a cooking class in Calhoun Square, and I asked the chef teaching us what his favorite restaurant in the Twin Cities was. He told me of a restaurant I hadn’t heard of, Cosmos in downtown Minneapolis at the Graves 601 Hotel – and I’ve been dying to go ever since (and kept hearing about the restaurant over and over again after that!)

The first thing we noticed? Free valet parking for Cosmo’s patrons, which is usually $15 at the hotel…makes you feel like a big-shot, and it lets my wife wear her “restaurant shoes”!

What a great night – I used to have a different restaurant as my favorite in the Twin Cities, but chefs John Occhiato and Khanh Tran at Cosmos in Minneapolis now win the gold for me. The food is incredible (including dessert), the place is gorgeous, and the service outstanding (and finding good service is difficult – and a good waiter and busboy really helps the meal!) The restaurant itself is gorgeous, very hip and and contemporary, but it doesn’t put on airs – they make you feel really comfortable. It’s easy to feel a bit out of it when going to a fancy restaurant, but Cosmos in Minneapolis, well, I’d love to go to it every week! They made us feel very special. I always repeat what Oprah says, it’s not what you say or even do, it’s how you make a person feel. And that feeling – that you’re important, and welcome, and they’re pleased to see you – that’s a huge deal. What a great restaurant.


Tomkin with amuse bouche

And the food – wow! They started us out with a free amuse-bouche, just a little bite-sized treat to whet the appetite (lovely!) and Julie got this fantastic drink (below). I love appetizers, and we got this special one, which was several kinds of mushrooms that grow in the wild and that were foraged right here in Minnesota. Julie isn’t a fan of mushrooms, but wow, she loved these! Probably the only time she’ll ever love mushrooms. Served on toast…outstanding. I love the idea of fresh local ingredients, but wow, foraging – I’ve never seen that on a menu, and I loved it. It’s fun reading in magazines about all the new ways today’s new chefs prepare food (like foraging), and at Cosmos in Minneapolis, I finally got to actually try it – and loved it!

Julie's amazing drink at Cosmos Minneapolis

 With the bread - who knew how good it could be?


It’s funny, the bread that came with dinner…I could have eaten a whole meal of it. I’m really picky about bread at dinner, and usually in restaurants it’s pretty good, but nothing like this – warm from the oven, soft and also crunchy…just perfect, really! Talking about bread this much – well, we’re going to Paris in a few months, and I’m really curious to taste their bread over and over, and now I feel like I have something I can really compare it to, something that the best restaurant in Minneapolis has to offer.

Julie with the porkchop at Cosmos Minneapolis

We then ordered the scallops, and the pork, for our entrees…woah, every single bite was amazing.  I love a good protein, but wow, when they make it with the perfect sauces and veggies to go with it, and it really enhances the experience. It was one of the few times where I liked the entrees as much as the appetizers (usually the appetizers are so tasty that they blow everything away), but here was a time where I loved both entrees, too (thanks to the waiter who recommended the scallops!) It’s fun ordering things like scallops and pork that I make at home, and seeing how a really great chef take ingredients that are better than I get at the super-market, and then prepare them perfectly, and then pair them with sides that enhance the food – it’s not only inspiring to me as a cook, it makes me want to try the other dishes!


Dessert at Cosmos Restaurant

With the amazing dessert


And finally, the two fantastic desserts – the first one was ice cream wrapped in chocolate, and when the waiter poured hot fudge over it, the chocolate melted and showed us the ice cream. I loved it! While the term “molecular gastronomy” is a bit of a misnomer, (perhaps it should be called “avant garde cuisine”?), having a dessert that actually DID something was pretty spectacular, and then the second dessert, wow – I didn’t even know I liked panna cotta that much, but with this crazy cracker, and citrus “bubbles” (aka foam), it blew me away. This panna cotta dish was literally the best dessert I’ve EVER had, hands down! How could a non-chocolate dessert be this good? As Ferran Adria says in his biography, “Ferran”, it’s not about technique or anything else – it’s about the FOOD, the ingredients, the taste – finding ways to really taste the essence of the ingredients, sometimes by making you think of it in a different way, sometimes by highlighting different elements…Cosmos in Minneapolis has really got it. Simple but elegant, fun, beautiful, a meal that I thought about for days and days afterwards – what a great way to make an occasion special!

Oh, and afterwards? They brought us out two little chocolates – a sweet and thoughtful gesture, making us feel important and valued and that we made the right choice in Cosmos in Minneapolis!

Book a reservation by calling (612) 312-1168 or using this link through Open Table.

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Minnesota wedding photographer recommendations

Photo by the amazing Laurie Schneider – www.lschneider.com


Question:

Hello Rev. Tomkin!

I know you’ve heard this many times but I’m going to say it too that I ABSOLUTELY love your site. I’ve thus far found it very useful and will continue to find it useful until (and hopefully not on) my wedding day.

I got engaged only a couple of weeks ago but, as a researcher, I started doing some researching. What are your thoughts are hiring a student photographer? I saw some of the prices of professional photographers and that’s definitely out of our budget! Would greatly appreciate your advice and recommendations!

Thanks,

Minnesota Bride Needs a Wedding Photographer

Answer:

Good morning, MBNWP,

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! (And thank you for your wonderful words!)

My thoughts are that a student photographer is fine if they’ve done 25 weddings. If they haven’t done 25 weddings…well, then you’re taking a chance, and thus, they should compensate by making themselves MUCH cheaper. So, you’re paying less money, but you are taking a chance. Does that make sense?

Some more thoughts:

Just FYI, the usual prices for a wedding photographer with 25 weddings under their belt (the reasons for the prices are then listed below):

  • $1,000. Minimum. OK photos.
  • $2,500. Usual price. Quite good photos.
  • $4,000. Pricier. Really great photos.

What you’ll get:

  • Photos
  • They’ll shoot about 1,000 photos on your wedding day.
  • You should get your first round of proofs in 2 months (about 400 basic edited images).
  • You’ll then pick the ones you want (maybe 50, which they’ll then Photoshop so they’re perfect…about 45 minutes per image!)
  • Best practice: You get the rights to the images (so can print them yourself).
  • Best practice: They post the images online (so you don’t have to email everyone all sorts of photos).

Wedding album

  • One option is to do it yourself.
  • Best practice: Have your photographer create the album.
  • Note that the wholesale price they’ll pay for a good album (just the empty album) is $300 (it’s a really nice album, and usually not available to non-professionals), which is one reason why albums are so expensive.
  • Perhaps 20 pages, 50 photos, all Photoshopped and perfect.

How many wedding photographers?

  • Usually one photographer can do the whole job.
  • However, some will have an assistant, to help with memory cards, setup, etc., or even shoot extra photos (not needed, but some do it).

Hours they’ll spend on your wedding (whether a student or a professional wedding photographer):

  • 3 hours preparation
  • 4-10 hours on your wedding day
  • 35 hours post-processing.
  • 45 minutes will be spent Photoshopping each of your 50 final photos.
  • Total hours your photographer will spend on your wedding (shooting, processing, etc.): 40+

Hours you’ll hire photographer on wedding day:

  • 4 hours minimum, usually
  • 10 hours = all day

Equipment needed (whether a student or a professional):

  • Bare minimum: 2 camera bodies ($3,000), 2 f2.8 zoom lenses ($2,000), 2 flashes, memory backup. A professional will have a whole lot more than this, but even a student should have this bare minimum if they’re going to do a wedding.
  • Thus your wedding photographer, whether a student or a professional, will have spent $6,000-$8,000 on equipment, as a bare minimum. (If they don’t have these things, do NOT hire them…they could do it for free, but they should NOT be hired for any money if they don’t have the right camera and equipment). Note that if they’re a student and not a professional, they won’t have to also spend money on online photo hosting, albums, and advertising, though.

I hope the above is helpful!

Warm regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Wedding Singer Mary Pat Nydahl

Millenium Gardens in Plymouth, MN

Millenium Gardens in Plymouth, MN for wedding ceremonies and receptions


Millenium Garden at the Plymouth Creek Center

Millenium Garden at the Plymouth Creek Center

Mary Pat Nydahl

Mary Pat Nydahl, wedding singer in the Minneapolis, MN area


Question:

Good Morning, Rev. Tomkin,
It was a pleasure meeting you at Saturday’s wedding at Plymouth’s Millenium Garden. What a beautiful day for a beautiful wedding! It was a pleasure providing the wedding sining with wedding pianist Sharon Planer. Like I told you, I often perform with Sharon when my pianist/organist, Tom Weeklund, is not available.

As we talked about, our website for wedding music in the Twin Cities, MN area is Music Ministry Plus, and we’re based in Burnsville, MN, but perform all around town. Your brides/grooms can listen online to 30 seconds of each of my songs from four published albums, so they know what I sound like.

Thanks so much! I look forward to working with you again soon!

Mary Pat

Mary Pat Nydahl
Music Ministry Plus
Cell: (952) 239-4420
Direct: (952) 562-2364

Answer:

Dear Mary Pat,

It was so wonderful to meet you, and getting to hear you sing with Sharon! Your singing was amazing, and added so much to their wedding ceremony – I hope to hear you again and again!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove, MN for wedding receptions and ceremonies

Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove, MN for weddings

Wedding receptions and ceremonies at the historic Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove, MN


Hope Glen Farm

Photo by Bella La Vida Photography


Photo by Paul Skie at CaptureMinnesota.com


Question:
Good afternoon, Rev. Tomkin,

I hope your summer is going well! In past years, we have enjoyed having you officiate wedding ceremonies at historic Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove, MN, and wanted to let you know that the farm is now available again for weddings, retreats, events of all kinds. So pass the word Hope Glen Farm is now available for renting of the land and barn for events!

The barn at Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove, Minnesota is heated and air conditioned so it can be used all year long for:
• weddings
• receptions
• barn dances
• corporate events
• retreats
• anniversaries
• graduations
• reunions
• study groups
• youth events
• church
• prayer vigils
• concerts
• talent show
• dinners
• festivals
• parties
• get together’s
• Alpha retreat
• craft show

Call us for rates and availability at 612-202-2886 or 651-459-4220.

Blessings
Michael and Paula
Hope Glen Farm
10276 E Point Douglas Rd., S.
Cottage Grove, MN
hopeglenfarm@aol.com

Answer:

Dear Michael and Paula,

Absolutely! You have a wonderful site for weddings, and couples are going to be so pleased you’re renting out the farm again!

Readers: A great review is at WeddingWire.

Best regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Weddings at the MIA (Minneapolis Institute of Arts)

Wedding at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Wedding at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, courtesy of Benjamin Keller Photography. Photos can be taken at the museum (with a permit that helps cover security costs), and then your wedding ceremony and reception can be held in the gorgeous new Target Wing


Minneapolis Institute of Arts - MIA - wedding

Wedding photos can even be taken inside the MIA (with a permit)


MIA wedding

Part of the amazing outdoor wedding spaces in the Target Park at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts


Question:

Hello, Rev. Tomkin,

I love your information about weddings at museums in Minneapolis! At the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, we have recently started hosting wedding ceremonies and receptions. Would you like a personalized tour of our wedding ceremony and reception spaces at the MIA?

Thanks and I hope to hear from you in the future!

Jessa Barron | Event Sales Manager
Minneapolis Institute of Arts
2400 Third Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
612-870-3289 Fax: 612-870-3004
jbarron@artsmia.org

Answer:

Good afternoon, Jessa,

Such a wonderful email to get – thank you for the information, and for the invitation – you’ve made my day! (Readers, the information is now up at running!).

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Bridal shop for plus-size brides in Minneapolis

Plus Size Wedding Dresses at Luxe in Minneapolis
 

 

Luxe Bridal in Minneapolis

Question:

Dear Rev. Tomkin,

Thank you for your amazing resources on your website! Can you help me with a problem? Where is there a place where I can buy a wedding dress if I’m fat? Or plus-size, or chubby, or whatever you’d like to call it, there is NOWHERE I can find that will help me get a size 20 wedding dress! It’s incredibly frustrating. Is there a bridal shop or wedding dress store in the Minneapolis, MN area that can help me out?

Searching in St. Paul

The wonderful people at Luxe Bridal Couture in Minneapolis, MN

Answer:

Dear SISP,

It’s crazy that this is even an issue – I would have thought all dress shops should carry dresses in all sizes (silly me!) I’m sorry you had to go through all that!

  1. Good news – I just met the most amazing group of women at the Minnesota Bridal Awards last week – Luxe Bridal Couture, who are one of only two plus-size wedding dress shops in all of Minnesota. They’re at 2401 Dupont Avenue S. in South Minneapolis, and they are the sweetest, most wonderful people. Their website is amazing, as is their blog. Here’s a great article about Luxe Bridal in the Star Tribune and another in Minneapolis St Paul Magazine. I’ve definitely met all of them in person, and they are incredibly nice (and really well dressed, which is a great sign for their good taste!) Such a terrific service they provide – I bet you’ll love them, and they’ll be great at finding you a wedding dress!
  2. Check out the very first store in Minnesota to feature plus-size wedding gowns: The Glass Slipper Bridal Boutique in Anoka, Minnesota!

The Glass Slipper for plus-size brides, in Anoka, MN

I hope this helps!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Congrats, Rev. Tomkin!

Diane Martinson, Extraordinary Wedding Singer in MN

Diane Martinson, Extraordinary Wedding Singer in MN


Question:

Dear Rev. Tomkin,

Congratulations on your Minnesota Bride Best of 2012 win! It’s always a pleasure singing in a wonderful wedding that you are officiating. I know couples get the very best ceremony if you are their wedding minister, and now you have another award to prove it.

All the best to you,

Diane

Diane Martinson / Special Events Vocalist
Diane Martinson Music, Inc
Live Music For Special Occasions
Diane@dianemusic.com
PH: 952.920.3064 FAX 952-920-8739
Pinterest Twitter LinkedIn FacebookYouTube

Answer:

Dear Diane,

Wow, thank you so much! I LOVE working with you, too, not only because you’re amazing to work with, but also, because then I get to hear you sing again!

Looking forward to working with you many more times!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Congrats on Best Wedding Officiant in MN!

Bride Support Wedding Coordinator in Minneapolis, MN

Question:

Rev. Coleman,
Just wanted to send a quick note to say CONGRATS on your award last night! What a testament to your service that you’ve won this award.

Can’t wait to work with you again. Hope you’re having a great (and busy – in a good way!) summer!

Happy Thursday.



Meredith Meyer

Answer:

Dear Meredith,

Ooh, thank you so much!

Wow, your email just made my day. Who writes to congratulate someone like that? THANK YOU!!! You’re such a great coordinator – and such a great person!

Looking forward to working with you many, many more times!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

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Simply Elegant Facebook Giveaway

Simply Elegant Bridal Consulting

Simply Elegant Bridal Consulting and Adagio DJ in Minneapolis, MN


Simply Elegant in MN

Question:

Hi, Rev. Tomkin,

I hope your summer is going well! On Sunday, 6/15/12, we at Simply Elegant Bridal Consulting in Minneapolis are launching a 1-month giveaway where Brides who “Like” Simply Elegant Bridal Consulting on Facebook AND “Like” Adagio DJ on Facebook will be entered for a drawing. One winner will receive a Day of Coordination package & a $1,300 DJ package from Adagio.

I hope your Vacation is great!!

Cheers!

Maybe we’ll see you tomorrow at the MN Bride Awards?!

Britty Glenn
Simply Elegant Bridal Consulting
Lead Planner
Simply Semple Director
612-239-2602

Answer:

Good afternoon, Britty,

Ooh, I love working with Simply Elegant, and I’d love to tell all my readers about your contest! Great idea!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s, 2011’s and 2012’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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BLVD Kitchen in Minnetonka for a rehearsal dinner

BLVD Restaurant in Minnetonka, MN
Interior of the BLVD Kitchen and Bar in Minnetonka, MN

Question:

Good Afternoon, Rev. Tomkin,

I hope your day is going well! When I searched for “Rehearsal Dinner Restaurants Minneapolis“, your website was #3. That is good news for you. The bad news for me is that you did not have the Private Dining Room at The BLVD Kitchen and Bar in Minnetonka listed!

Patio at the BLVD bar

We have an amazing setting for rehearsal dinners that includes a private patio. I would enjoy showing it to you at your convenience. Thank you for your time!

Sincerely,

Sarah Eingenmann
BLVD Kitchen
11544 Wayzata Boulevard
Minnetonka, MN 55305
(763) 398-3200

Answer:

Good afternoon, Sarah,

So good to hear from you! I love to support local businesses, and I’ll put your info up right away. The next time I’m out in your area, I’ll drop you a line, and I’d love to get a tour!

Warm regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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FIVE Event Center in Minneapolis – review

 

Question:

Hello, Rev. Tomkin,

I hope this message finds you well. We recently received another wedding inquiry directed from your review of FIVE Event Center in Minneapolis on your page about gorgeous wedding locations in Minneapolis. Thank you and thanks for this, and all the other great referrals over the years, we REALLY appreciate it!

Sincerely,

Lesley Decker
Event Manager
FIVE Event Center
612.827.5555 p
612.822.9439 f
Office hours: Monday-Thursday 9am-5pm, Friday 9am-Noon

Answer:

Good afternoon, Lesley,

Wow, you’re so very welcome! I love the FIVE Event Center!

Warm regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Unity Candle Recommendation for Outdoor Weddings

Hurricane set for unity candle ceremony in the wind

Question:

Dear Rev. Tomkin,

I’d like use Unity Candle ceremony in our outdoor wedding, if possible. I saw your blog post on Unity Candles at outdoor wedding ceremonies. I’m wondering what you recommend for a whole set, though, that we could get and what you have seen that works the best in outdoor ceremonies. Do you have any suggestions for a unity candle ceremony outdoors, where we could buy the whole set?

Thanks!

Outdoor Bride

Answer:

Good evening, OB,

Sure! Here’s a great set for an outdoor Unity Candle wedding ceremony. It’s always a little tricky with candles outside, but this set is the best.

I hope this helps!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Live Streaming For Weddings

Live streaming for wedding ceremonies

Live streaming for wedding ceremonies

Live streaming

Question (from phone conversation):

Reverend Coleman,

Nice talking to you, Reverend Coleman! As we talked about, Your Host Streaming provides Live Streaming services for churches, and with so many elderly and out-of-state wedding guests, Live Streaming can be a great way of having guests watch the wedding ceremony real-time, blessing them with their presence. Thank you very much for your referrals to some local churches, and I hope that you’ll be performing some wedding ceremonies where our live streaming will help guests witness your couples’ wedding vows!

Sincerely,

Eric Kirkhuff / Technical Sales
YourHost.com / YourStreamingHost.com
Eric@YourHost.com
714 842-8511 x/ 115
Cell – 714-329-4860
SKYPE – YourHost1
Skype number 714 594-7482
Yahoo – EricInTheOffice

Answer:

Good afternoon, Eric,

Glad I could help! I wish you the very best with your wonderful service you offer!

Best regards,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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Wedding violinist in Minnesota

Wedding violin in Minneapolis, MN

Wedding violinist in Minnesota, Alexandra Early


Hello Rev Coleman,

I wrote to you a while ago thanking you for maintaining this wonderful resource for MN brides, including your wonderful list of wedding musicians in the Minneapolis, MN area. As it turns out, thanks to your review of Twin Cities wedding venues, I am definitely getting married at the Summit Ave University Club this July! Yay!

I wanted to touch base with you about my violin services for wedding ceremonies in MN. My fiance and I are both professional musicians (I’m a violinist, he’s a bass trombonist). We are moving to the Twin Cities this June when we complete our three-year fellowships with the New World Symphony in Miami, FL. I am a St. Paul, MN native and am very excited about the prospect of moving back to the Cities! In preparation for the big move, I’m reaching out to experienced wedding/event professionals like you in the hopes of building professional relationships.

I have studied the violin for 20 years (I have both a bachelors and masters degree in violin performance) and have many years of experience in the wedding industry. I’ve been playing in weddings and events since 2001 and also owned and managed a wedding/event string quartet LLC from 2007-2009 during my time at the Cleveland Institute of music.

Again, thank you for providing such a wonderful resource for MN brides.

Thank you for your time!

Alex Early
AlexandraEarly.com

Answer:

Good morning, Alexandra,

Wow, so good to hear from you! That’s wonderful that you are getting married at the University Club (you’ll love it). And congratulations!

And yes, I’d LOVE to promote you! I’m a huge supporter of the arts, and it would be wonderful to promote such a talented and experienced violinist.

Best wishes on your careers, and I hope to be working with you both soon!

Warmly,

Rev. Tomkin

Rev. Tomkin Coleman
Voted 2007’s “Best Wedding Planner” by CitySearch
Voted 2010’s and 2011’s “Best Wedding Officiant” by Minnesota Bride Magazine

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