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Real Wedding: Betsey + Chris | The Farm at Old Edwards | Highlands, NC

Nestled in the picturesque town of Highlands, NC, the Old Edwards Inn is a European-style resort that provides luxe accommodations amid the charm of the small mountain town. The inn boasts a casually elegant vibe and has seven distinct spaces available for weddings from large to small.

Betsey and Chris chose The Farm at Old Edwards as the location for their ceremony and reception. The aesthetic was refined, natural and uber chic thanks to Betsey’s keen taste and the help of Melissa Porter with Asheville Event Co. When it came time to party, the darling duo enlisted Atlanta Rhythm & Groove band to lead the celebration.

Prepare to swoon from the images captured by  6 of Four Photography. Thank you for sharing your incredible craft!

 

VENDOR DREAM TEAM
Band: Atlanta Rhythm & Groove | ECE Agent: Ellie Schwarz | Photography: 6 of Four Photography | Planner: Melissa Porter, Asheville Event Co. | Venue & Catering: The Farm at Old Edwards | Officiant: Howard Hanger | Ceremony Music: Mountain Faith| Floral Design: Fiddlehead Designs | Rentals: Classic Event Rental | Wedding Cake: Ruth & Ranshaw | Makeup & Hair: Hair and Makeup by Heather  | Printed Material: Atheneum Creative

Entertainment Trends for Corporate Events in 2018

With 2017 winding down, all eyes are on the 2018 horizon. What will be the next big thing in corporate entertainment? With over 1,000 booked dates already on ECE’s books for 2018, we are beginning to see trends emerge.

From conference general and closing sessions to product launches to employee recognition events and more, in 2018 it will all be about the experience. Corporate event planners and DMCs are looking for entertainment that is engaging. It’s not enough to simply draw people to the event. The goal is for attendees to stay at the event completely engaged and consumed, and leave the event changed or inspired by the objective or messaging.  Entertainment plays a key role in achieving this goal. Following are the top five trends we are seeing for 2018.


1. PAIR A HIGH-END DANCE BAND WITH A NATIONAL ARTIST

Nothing is more wow-factor than having a nationally-recognized artist or celebrity entertainer at your corporate event.  Depending on the type of event, audience and budget, attendees can feel like VIPs with a private performance from artists like One Republic, Darius Rucker, Bon Jovi and countless others. Trending for 2018 is mixing a national artist with a high-end dance band. Planners and DMCs are booking bands like Party On The Moon or Simply Irresistible and adding on a national artist to perform as a special guest vocalist for 3-5 songs. This arrangement gives companies and organizations with more modest budgets the ability to have that awe-inspiring national talent experience.

2. GO HAUTE WITH HIGH-TECH 
Tech is trending! 3D projection mapping is all the rage for 2018 with clients and planners using it for stage design, specialty shows, large-scale projection (think entire buildings!) and even as an accompaniment to dance or performing arts shows. Custom designs and performances can be created to align with any event theme, messaging or goal.

Also trending for 2018 are drone shows and 3D floating imagery.

3. CUSTOM SPECIALTY ENTERTAINMENT
Any seasoned event pro knows that creating a cohesive environment is imperative to the success of the event. A major trend we saw in 2017 and continues strong for 2018 is the use of multiple specialty entertainers intentionally created and strategically placed throughout the event. Think lollipop aerialists, stilt walkers, sway pole artists and strolling living art characters decked out in custom costumes cohesive with the client’s branding or conference messaging. The overall effect is innovative, engaging and practically guarantees attendees will share their experiences on social media. And, let’s be honest, if attendees don’t post about the event on social media, did it even really happen?

4. DJs AND LIVE INSTRUMENTS
Elevate the DJ experience with the addition of live drums, electric violins, singers, brass and more! This is a huge trend for 2018 and creates an interactive atmosphere that is fun and unexpected. Hey DJ! and DJ Shelly are two ECE exclusive artists who are paving the way with this hot trend.

5. PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD
Creative food and beverage elements have been trending for years, but hip events in 2018 are presenting the sips and noshes in unique and interactive ways.  From champagne aerialists, cirque buffets, tank-torched sandwiches, hot air balloon servers, food drones, living tables, napkin ladies and more, the options for adding playful entertainment to your food and beverage offerings are limitless.

Image courtesy of New Moon Chicago

There is no denying that 2018 corporate events will be creative and experiential. For more ideas or to learn how ECE can take the trends above and curate a custom experience for whatever type of event you are planning, reach out to an ECE entertainment consultant by completing this form or calling 855-323-4386.

Event Recap: MGM National Harbor’s Platinum & Noir Event

The Platinum & Noir $250,000 Event was a customer appreciation event hosted by the MGM National Harbor for MLife Rewards members. In addition to live music, delicious food and beverages, guests were treated to a fun game show night where $250,000 of prizes were given away, including jewelry, cruises, cash, a car, gameplay and more.

ECE agent, Jenny Langer, curated a custom entertainment package for the event that included:

– Kool Kat Lite (who performed a post-modern Jukebox style show)
– Emcee/Actor as Game Show Host
– Two Golden Showgirls
– Two Digital Photo Booths
– One Roaming Photographer

Thanks to Great American Photo for sharing photos from this incredible event!