Corporate and Special Event Planning

It’s All About the Experience

It’s All About the Experience

Event planning is about creating an experience, for the guests and for the client. It is critical to ensure that not only have you booked a tent and a caterer but that you have pulled the entire event together with the details that make it something to remember.

My husband and I love to travel and we love food. We are what people call “foodies”. We plan trips around the food. For that reason we are not big fans of Cuba, the pretty beaches don’t make up for the horrible food. For us the food experience can easily ruin what otherwise would be an incredible holiday. Earlier this year I attended a festival planning conference. During one of the sessions I attended, all about making culinary experiences a part of your festival, I had the pleasure of hearing about all the food festivals in the area. I immediately fell in love with Flavours in the Field. The room was full of food festivals but this one stood out because of the experience it offered.

I was lucky enough to be able to purchase two tickets to the event at the conference silent auction and the tickets remained on our fridge for months. From the moment I purchased them it was our plan for that weekend in August. My husband and I made a road trip out of it. We spent four days travelling and enjoying food. We left home on the Thursday morning and travelled to Picton for the first night’s stay. Picton is only about 2.5 hours from home so we had plenty of time to enjoy our day. We had heard there was lots of shopping, wineries (we don’t drink wine unfortunately) and food in Picton. My husband had chosen our accommodations for the evening but hadn’t told me where we were  staying. And you guessed it, he chose it based on the food reviews. Our first night we stayed at Waring House. My husband thoroughly enjoyed his appetizer which was watermelon with scallops. A very interesting combination of textures and flavours.

The next day we toured the area a little bit. We moved on to Toronto on Friday and then to Beeton on Saturday for the event we had our hearts set on. And it did not disappoint.

So here is what I knew about the event when I bought the ticket. I knew we were going to board a steam train that would take us to a field in the middle of nowhere and let us off where the sign literally said “Nowhere”. There we would be fed by local chefs. Sound enticing doesn’t it? Well it was and it was exactly what they promised only better. When we arrived on site there was a jazz band playing. We all boarded the train and set off to nowhere. We arrived just as the rain began to pour…literally pour…to one of the most gorgeous field settings I have ever seen.

The rain did not dampen the spirits of anyone in attendance, including the volunteers and staff who were by this point exhausted after days of setting up and now also soaked through to the bone. There were three large tents where the chefs, wineries, breweries and others all set up. As we walked through the stunning door arch way we were handed a wine glass and a plate with a little wine glass holder so that we could use one hand to carry them both and one hand for sampling the delicious food. The first booth in the first tent we walked into was Beau’s Brewery so my hubby was happy, happy, happy. From there we tried all kinds of delicious foods. And as always we filled up way too quickly. Small bites are way more filling than you can imagine.

My favourite features had to be some of the decor they used. It was so incredibly perfect! First of all I love sunflowers so that was an easy win over because they were everywhere. They had created these gorgeous hay bail couches and chairs that were made into little lounge areas throughout. Their photobooth was a gorgeous antique frame with the name of their event on it and the one that I thought was genius had to be the toilets, they even decorated the port-potties! All of those little touches made this go from great to WOW!

Along with their railroad sign in Nowhere they are also known for the gorgeous door entrance they have created for the event. It not only makes for the perfect entrance to the event but also a perfect spot for photographs. Again, it’s in the details. They decorated both sides of the door way, not just the side you see when you arrive by train but also the side you see as you exit. It is details like all of these that I have described and shown you that make this an event I continue to talk about and will for years to come. As an event planner this is what we strive for.

Please allow me a moment to introduce myself. My name is Julia O’Grady and I am the heart and soul behind ITM. I started this company in October 2010 to help fulfill my dream of making people’s lives just a little better, one special moment at a time. I am passionate about special moments and thrive on planning events. I love everything about it. I love the organizing, the problem solving, coming up with original ideas and adding a little bit of the unexpected into everything I do.

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