I'm getting hitched in Guerneville next August, and I thought I'd start a thread so anyone who's doing the deed west of Napa can share more localized info. Our families will be spending about a week there, and here are my tentative plans for actitivies & vendors - if you have experience with any of them (or recommendations for better ones), please chime in! If you have rather specific questions or advice, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Catering - Preferred Sonoma Caterers
Preferred Sonoma Caterers - Catering in Sonoma, Marin, Napa, and San Francisco
These caterers were recommended by a very enthusiastic bride on indiebrides.com, and they have been incredibly friendly and responsive (got a proposal within an hour of my request). Their rates are reasonable and the chef is excited to do a vegetarian/vegan reception - she says she considers it "an exciting creative challenge" - what a cutie! We haven't decided on the menu yet, but the proposal was for heavy apps, a chocolate fountain, 2 servers & all taxes & delivery fees for $30pp for 30 people. Their proposal includes beautiful fancy displays & I'm going to supplement with pizza delivery & ice cream bars :-) See their web site for very detailed menu & pricing information. Oh yeah, and they'll do day-of coordination for I think $350. Since their carryout meal prices are quite reasonable, we're going to hire them to cater some additional meals for the family during the week as well.
Bulk Flower Delivery - California Organic Flowers
I'm not sure whether we'll do the flower thing or not, but if so, we'll probably get a bulk delivery of organic flowers from these guys. For around $250, you can get either 90 calla lilies or a party pack of bunches 12 different kinds of flowers.
Photography - Donya Photography (Deeba Yavrom)
(This guy isn't local, he's in Davis and charges a transportation fee.)
I found this guy through indiebrides as well, and we're not going to hire him until I get out to California to meet him, but I really like his web site and he's extremely friendly and responsive. He shoots on digital, both photojournalistic style and portrait style, which is just what we're looking for. His rates start at $1,049 for a 6-hour shoot + editing, and for $200 he'll bring a 2nd shooter. We're going to have the 2nd shooter set up a portrait area for fun portraits of extended family and friends, which we're going to stock with costume accessories.
Live Music (national search site)
Live Entertainment Booking Agents, Wedding Music, DJs, Party Music Bands
I came across this site randomly, and it has tons of information on performers, including sound bites for many of them and bid price history for most of them, and it makes it really easy and fast to get quotes from a number of bands or solo performers. I made 10 requests and got 8 quotes back within 24 hours. I think we're going to hire a cover band (for $1400, but I got quotes as low as $300), and maybe a xylophone player. I also want to find a balloon artist (to make balloon animals during the cocktail hour) and a firedancer or two, so if you know people who do this, please let me know.
We're going to rent a few limos to take the family on a 4-hour winetasting tour, and I think we'll probably use this company, but I'm not sure.
Napa winery tours, Sonoma winery tours, and transportation from California Wine Tours
It comes out to $10 per person per hour.
We haven't narrowed down our list of vineyards at all and we've never been to any of these, but we want to visit 3 or 4 places that offer maximum variety - free tasting, incredible wine, beautiful location, champagne, organic, educational tour, etc.
Here's our current list:
Korbel Champagne Cellars, Guerneville
Davis Bynum Winery, Healdsburg
Davis Bynum - Russian River Valley Wines
Alexander Valley Vineyards Winery, Healdsburg
Alexander Valley Vineyards
Hanna Winery, Healdsburg
Winery - Tasting Rooms
Hop Kiln Winery, Healdsburg
Hop Kiln Winery Welcomes You
Sausal Vineyard & Winery, Healdsburg
Sausal Winery Estate Zinfandels
Toad Hollow Tasting Room, Healdsburg
Toad Hollow Vineyards
Michel-Schlumberger Winery, Healdsburg
F. Teldeschi Winery, Healdsburg
Sunce Winery & Vineyards, Santa Rosa
SuncÃ© Winery : SuncÃ© Winery
Paradise Ridge Winery, Santa Rosa
Paradise Ridge Winery
Beach Activities, at or near Bodega Bay
Go horseback riding on the beach
Bodega Bay horse riding stable Chanslor Ranch
Take surfing lessons
Bodega Bay Surf Shack
Russian River Activities
Go fishing, canoeing, kayaking or tubing (is the water cold for tubing??)
Burke's Canoe Trips on the Russian River
Home - Safari West
Take a safari at an African wildlife preserve in Northern California (??!)
Miniature golf, Guerneville
Pee Wee Golf, Guerneville, California
- Mud bath: Golden Haven Hot Springs (couples treatments) Napa Valley Spa Specials at Calistoga Golden Haven Hot Springs or Indian Springs (maybe nicer) Indian Springs Resort and Spa
- Petrified Forest
- Old Faithful Geyser
Leopards, Etc, Occidental
Maybe we'll have some wild cats in our wedding?
Leopards, Etc. Home
Restaurants & Cafes
Mosaic Restaurant & Wine Lounge, Forestville
East West Bakery Cafe, Sebastopol
Screamin' Mimi's, Sebastopol
Screamin' Mimi's Ice Cream - Ice Cream is fun, but we take it seriously!
Coffee Bazaar, Guerneville
Coffee Bazaar Guerneville | Yelp.com
Pat's Restaurant, Guerneville
Yelp | Pat's Restaurant Guerneville
Adorno's Pizza, Guerneville
Forestville Club Forestville | Yelp
Union Hotel Restaurant, Occidental and Santa Rosa
Family-style Italian dining, also bulk take-out orders
Restaurants and Facilities
Russian River Resort, Guerneville
Russian River Resort :: Triple R Bar & Grill
Stumptown Brewery, Guerneville
Main Street Station Pizza & Cabaret, Guerneville
Main Street Station Ristorante, Cabaret & Pizzeria
Club Fab, Guerneville
Gay dance club
Forestville Club, Forestville
Forestville Club Forestville | Yelp
Thanks for your input, and good luck!!