Alicia and Aaron grew up in Northern Virginia, not too far from each other but far enough that it could’ve been an entire world away.  That is, until their worlds brought them together at Virginia Tech University.  They both were Hokies, however it was a trip to the Sugar Bowl that would be their destiny.

virginia-tech-hokies-logoThe two would be invited to make the 18-hour bus ride to New Orleans by friends, and by the time they got back everyone just knew.  Alicia would finish her studies while also holding down a full time job, while Aaron would join the Air Force.  This couple that was made for each other, got engaged, and through Northern Virginia Magazine, would come to know us.

Alicia & Aaron were selected from hundreds of entries last October in which we gave away an entire Wedding Ceremony & Reception Package that included DJ, emcee, custom gobo, uplighting, ceremony sound, online planning, consultation and the reception sound system.

It was on November 4 that were were notified of the winner and that started the planning process.  With just under a year to go until the wedding, we were able to meet with Alicia and her mother Brenda during one of Alicia’s breaks from school.  Did we mention she was a full-time student?  She was also planning a wedding too!  Some of it without her fiance.

Brown Good Wedding

Guests enjoying the cool air inside following the ceremony. Natural light was everywhere, though our incandescent uplights really helped to make the brick pillars pop.

After just a few minutes of the first meeting, you could see several things.  How much Alicia loved Aaron and was excited to be marrying the man of her dreams, how much Brenda adored her daughter and her future son in law, and how organized Alicia was to have a lot of the details already worked out and in progress.  After our meeting, she was on the way to a dress fitting and was excited about finding her dream dress.  Somehow, during all of her work, she was able to get her music list together.

Alicia took advantage of the Online Event Planner and allowed guests to make requests ahead of time which led to an epic playlist.  Both Alicia and Aaron chose five songs they had to hear and they did; from there, it was a wide variety of some of the best wedding music you could imagine.  We knew ahead of time, and Alicia was confident going into her wedding day, how much fun her reception was going to be.

The staff at the Meadowlark Botanical Gardens is very helpful when it comes to taking a look around.  They have a beautiful setting, Ashley and Christian know their venue inside and out, going so far as to point out where the electrical connections were inside the atrium and outside on the patio which includes and overlooks some of the gardens.  Parking is plentiful in front of the venue which also includes a visitors center where the public can enter to view the gardens.

The gobo during the day could easily be seen above the sweetheart table.

The gobo during the day could easily be seen above the sweetheart table.

The custom gobo Alicia wanted was directed to the slanted ceiling which had windows on top that allowed a lot of natural light into the atrium.  And if you like windows, this is the place for you.  So much natural light, along with a stream inside the atrium.  It is truly a unique setting.

The ceremony was planned to be outside, but as has been the case a couple of times already this year, Mother Nature had other ideas.  It rained a little on the way over and during the pre-ceremony pictures.  The skies were threatening but even Mother Nature recognized the beauty of this couple and allowed the ceremony to take place outside.  After a couple of false starts, and the preparing of the atrium just in case, all went off without a drop outside in a beautiful ceremony.

After the ceremony, the guests came back inside and enjoyed the air conditioning while the staff cleared the patio to make way for a bar and a sitting area for people who didn’t want to be inside the whole time.  Metro Photo Booth was on hand to allow guests to take pictures in their open-air photo booth while the guests enjoyed cocktail hour music.  The sound system was set-up so that the photo booth didn’t have a lot of volume directed to it, but guests could still hear the music when they were taking their pictures.

The dance floor fills with a special request and song from the groom's mother Rosemary.

The dance floor fills with a special request and song from the groom’s mother Rosemary.

When cocktail hour ended, it was time to introduce the family.  The bridal party were all introduced to Chris Brown’s “Forever”, and they lived the song.  Every couple had a pose, dance, smile, or just a little something unique for their entrance.  As the bridesmaids and groomsmen walked to their seats, and the best man and maid of honor were walking in, the music faded.  There was but one song to play to introduce the newly married Hokie sweethearts, “Enter Sandman”.  When the song started, all of their classmates and friends from Blacksburg got out of their chairs and started jumping.

It was a surprise to Aaron who for a moment or two believed he was going to have his first dance to the Metallica mega hit.  Much to his liking, Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” was the song he would dance with his new wife to.  Following the first dance, Alicia had the chance to dance with her dad Michael, and Aaron his mom Rosemary.

Then came a unique moment we’ve never seen at a wedding when both mothers came forward with a pre-recorded portion of their speech.  Rosemary had a special Hawaiian song to play after she gave a little speech wishing the happy couple well.  During the song, all the couples in attendance came to the dance floor and danced with the bride and groom.

When the dance floor opened, guests stayed, and stayed a long time. The bride and groom provided flip flops for those who wanted more comfortable footwear.

When the dance floor opened, guests stayed, and stayed a long time. The bride and groom provided flip flops for those who wanted more comfortable footwear.

Then it was time for Brenda, Alicia’s mom to give her speech, but she had already done so.  Fearing that she wouldn’t be able to get through the speech without coming to tears, Brenda recorded her speech ahead of time and had it played back while she stood on the dance floor to wish the happy couple her best.

Following a buffet dinner, it was time for the speeches.  First, Alicia’s brother Aaron had the opportunity to say a few words about his sister.  The Maid of Honor Hannah was nervous, to say the least, but gave a very meaningful and thoughtful speech about the bride.  During her speech, the best man Steven, joined her along with the remainder of the bridesmaids to help her finish the speech.  Steven’s speech talked about their time playing high school basketball, a concussion and was full of admiration for the bride.  You could not tell that this was the first wedding for this core group of friends as all did a terrific job with their parts.  Each of the following weddings are going to be amazing.

The bride and groom took an opportunity to thank everyone for coming before cutting the cake and opening the dance floor.  The dance floor stayed packed and nobody wanted to leave even

The bride and groom tearing up the dance floor!

The bride and groom tearing up the dance floor!

during the bouquet and garter ceremonies.  Since this was the first wedding for this core group, there were a lot of single men and women on the dance floor, and wouldn’t it happen to be that the recipients of the bouquet and garter would be a couple who are serious and will probably be engaged soon!

Alicia had also wanted a Dollar Dance which lasted for several songs, and with a lot of the attendees.  The dollars flowed, even for the groom who was there to dance with the guests.  As more and more lined up, the time got shorter and shorter as Hannah did a great job as the Maid of Honor keeping the pace for her bride.

The guests took advantage of shuttle buses arranged by the bride and groom to take guests back to the hotel in nearby Tyson’s Corner.  It was the start of a wonderful weekend that would include a trip down Interstate 81 to Blacksburg for the Virginia Tech game against Ohio State for many of the guests, while Alicia & Aaron took off on their honeymoon to St. Thomas.

Brown Good Wedding


Services Provided

  • DJ/Emcee
  • Sound system
  • Ceremony sound system
  • Ceremony music
  • Cocktail hour sound system
  • Uplights
  • Custom Gobo
  • Dance floor lights

Brown Good WeddingVendors:
Venue:  The Atrium: Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
Photographer:  Life Gallery Studio
Officiant:  Pastor Dan Thompson
Caterer:  Great Blue Heron
Bakery:  Wanda’s Cakes
Florist:  Karin’s Florist
Photobooth:  Metro Photo Booth
Hotel:  Crowne Plaza, Tyson’s Corner
Special Thanks:  Northern Virginia Magazine

Photo Gallery:  Metro DC DJs & Entertainment

Wedding DJ, Sports DJ, P. A. Announcing, Mitzvah DJ, Emcee, Host, Corporate DJ. I get to help people have a great time!