If you’re in the early stages of planning your wedding, chances are you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by all of the decisions you have to make over the next couple of months. Sure, you can do it on your own, but why not alleviate some of the stress by turning to a local expert?
Not only are wedding planners in the High South knowledgeable and experienced in orchestrating special events, they’re connected to an expansive variety of local vendors in the area. If that’s the kind of expertise you’re looking for, call them up today and set up an appointment to get started on planning your perfect day.
We got together with two of the area’s premier wedding planners for a Q-and-A session that will help you hash out your concerns and start the planning process on the right foot.
Meet Elizabeth Hempfling, owner and principal planner at Events by Elizabeth Ashley, and Meris Gantt, lead planner for The Whole Shebang event services. They’re both board members for the local event services network, High South Event Professionals, and they’re both here to help you every step of the way.
Here’s what they have to say about their roles in the local wedding industry:

What does a consultant do?
Elizabeth: “The primary responsibility of a wedding consultant is to take care of the client and their overall needs and wishes. It is their role to create bonds and communicate on the back end so that everything results in happy clients, happy vendors and a successful event.”
Meris: “Wedding consultants are here to make the planning process as enjoyable as the wedding itself. It’s all about knowing the client well enough to be able to read their mind, know what they want, and make decisions on their behalf without having to bother them with all of the tiny details.”

Why should I hire a consultant?
Elizabeth: “As consultants, we are heavily involved in the wedding industry itself and we work hand-in-hand with our local vendors. We can handle the logistics of bringing all of the elements together. We can help you with things you might not even be thinking about, like which caterer would be the best for your venue and which photographers know the best overlooks and the best time of day for lighting. Planners give you valuable insight because this is what we do every day and we have the connections to do it. And, we’re awesome.”
Meris: “Most of our clients live out of town and have no idea who to hire for a High Country wedding. Wedding consultants can help couples navigate the confusing world of local venues and vendors to ensure they get lined up with the right team that fits their style and budget.”

Why should I get married in the High South?
Elizabeth: “Visually, with the majestic beauty all around us, everything is so gorgeous. I’ve lived here my whole life, so I can also say that we have some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet.”
Meris: “Aside from the gorgeous weather, cool summers, and pastoral setting, the High Country is a warm and inviting community. The feedback I get from clients is about how impressed they are that all of the wedding vendors up here are team players — always willing to pull together to make every event a success,” Gantt said. “I think we have a really unique group of professionals up here that are hardworking, honest, and always put the client first.”

What’s the most important piece of advice you have for brides planning mountain weddings in our area?
Elizabeth: “Really give a lot of consideration to the time of year that’s best for you and make sure that you hire professionals that will work as a team to take care of you. Also, make sure you have fun. Enjoy the process, because you’ll only get to do this once. It really needs to be special so you can walk away with good memories.”
Meris: “Have a rock solid bad weather plan. I know we all want a perfect, sunshiny wedding day — believe me, that’s what we want, too. But, when that doesn’t happen, we want to have a plan B that still puts a smile on every face.”


The Whole Shebang ... Meris Gantt
Where Southern charm meets rustic elegance. The Whole Shebang continually strives to help you create a one-of-a-kind, unforgettable wedding in the High Country Mountains of North Carolina. We absolutely love what we do and there is a real joy in the process of creating a relaxed and fun atmosphere that allows you to create her own unique vision of your perfect wedding day. A wedding is a chance for you to share your love story with your friends and family. There's nothing more special than making your wedding day uniquely your own. Our job is to help pull together every aspect of your vision. Let us focus on the details so you can focus on enjoying the moment!  828-719-9171

Gadabouts ... Eileen Gaddy
Gadabouts has been pleased to cater and plan weddings and special events for the North Carolina High South since 2004. As a professional and full service catering and event planning company, our specialties include weddings and rehearsal dinners as well as corporate galas and grand openings and other social events.  With certified wedding planners and consultants on staff as well as a professional catering team, Gadabouts is especially prepared to provide perfect memories for a lifetime!  Convenient to all North Carolina High South Venues in Valle Crucis, Linville, Blowing Rock, Banner Elk and Boone NC, Gadabouts is truly the caterer to call for that perfect wedding or special event! We would love the opportunity to discuss your upcoming wedding or special event with you.  828-773-0988

Wedding Resource Center ... Elizabeth Hempfling
Operated by Elizabeth Hempfling of Events by Elizabeth Ashley, the Wedding Resource Center is your one-stop-shop for planning a dream wedding. Elizabeth and her team of professionals showcase a gallery of unique vendors and services from and throughout the High South, as well as the knowledge and experience necessary to bring your vision to life. Schedule an appointment to start planning with the experts or stop by to browse the gallery for inspiration.  828-386-1444