How to Stand Out as an Event Planner in 2023

1. Plan environmentally friendly events 

Whether you’re planning a wedding, a corporate retreat or your kid’s end-of-school party, making environmentally friendly choices can create an inspiring atmosphere that everyone can feel good about. 

Here’s the key: make it easy for guests to be green! Things like clearly labeling recycling, compost and trash bins and providing examples for each take the guesswork out of where people’s scraps go. Opting for plastic-free and compostable tableware is another great option! There are endless ways to make green swaps, it just takes a little time to research and implement! 

Offering environmentally friendly options to clients elevates your look and offerings and allows clients to make choices they feel good about. With one simple suggestion of green alternatives, you’ve made the event a force for good and something even more meaningful for guests. 

2. Create mini-events throughout the entire larger event

This little trick keeps the night moving and keeps guests comfortably entertained during setups and potentially long transitions. 

Cocktail hour? Consider adding live music to liven it up! Set up photo-ops and games at doors open before the event officially begins. Setting up “memorable moments” throughout the event creates a sense of movement and energy and allows guests to connect and make personal memories beyond the larger event. 

Creating these mini-moments can take the pressure off of the larger event and can set your clients at ease. It can also make the planning portion more digestible and fun for the client. Thinking about one large event can be overwhelming, but breaking down the evening into bite-sized bits makes the client feel more in control, empowered and helped by you! 

3. Niche-down and do it well 

Doing what you do loud and proud puts your clients at ease and gives you an edge as an event planner. Whenever businesses, brides, schools or tired parents are planning their first event, they rely on their event planner to think of everything they’ve missed and take care of elusive details. 

One of the best things you can do for your clients is to clearly communicate everything that’s in your brain so they can feel at ease that you’ve truly thought of everything. If you’re working with a new bride, getting her preferences and ideas and then adding what you’ve seen work best can create a beautiful partnership that can give her peace of mind on her big day. 

Anyone you work with doesn’t know what they don’t know. When you fill in the gaps, trust is built and you’ll stand out! 

Following these three simple tips can help make 2023 your best year yet! Let us know how implementing these strategies works for you!  

The Gem and Jewelry Show

The Gem and Jewelry Show is a beautiful event that you don’t want to miss! There’s something for everyone – gems, minerals, crystals, pearls, jewelry, crafts, beads, and more! It’s an exciting experience where you can find exquisite, one-of-a-kind pieces to take home with you and wrap up for someone special. You’ll be amazed at the variety of items on display, and there’s sure to be something that catches your eye. Get to the Gem and Jewelry Show and find the perfect gifts this holiday season.

-December 9, 2022 @ 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
-$5 Admission

Coping with Stress

Holiday Survival Tips for Event Planners

For event planners, most of life is lived between the highs of important events. Maybe this holiday season you’re craving something simple, sweet, slow, and stress-free. The truth is inevitably there must be some downtime or you will burn out. But it can feel impossible to find the deep rest you need when even your attempts at self-care feel exhausting. Maybe all you have the energy for at the end of the day is scrolling through other people’s adventures and self-care routines feeling resentful that you can’t have the same ones. Here are some tips to end your exhausting search for the right kind of self-care and find a beautiful way to cope with stress: 

Scrolling (what’s really happening there?)

One of the reasons you can’t help reaching for social media but also never feel satisfied after a good scroll-shesh is because of a little brain chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is a short-term fix or high you experience in response to cortisol release. It is associated with instant gratification, pleasure, and the reward center of your brain. The problem is that dopamine is highly addictive and can leave you feeling more anxious and stressed after you come off of the “high.” Try this instead…

Serotonin and Oxytocin

These happy, calm brain chemicals are associated with tight social bonds, trust, generosity, long-term health benefits, better focus, better sleep, and less anxiety. Next time you’re feeling overwhelmed and desperately need a way to cope with stress, leave your phone in a drawer and try a few of these things:

-Take a Group Exercise Class: Group exercise is a wonderful way to build supportive relationships while taking care of your health and completing the stress cycle. You’ll release tons of oxytocin when you do creating a calm, safe feeling, and decreasing your anxiety. 

-Take a Walk Outside: Exposure to nature especially when you move outdoors releases serotonin and endorphins leaving you feeling peaceful, revived, and in a better mood. Exposure to sunlight, even in the wintertime, can help counteract seasonal depression and help you absorb a vital dose of vitamin D which also affects mood. 

-Try Deep Breathing: There are too many health benefits to deep breathing to even fit in this article. One of the major outcomes of slow, deep, intentional breaths is the release of serotonin. Serotonin is necessary for feeling happier, experiencing better focus, and sleeping better through the night. Try breathing exercises and some meditation at the start of each day as a powerful way to cope with stress. 

-Express Gratitude: Gratitude has many positive mental health benefits. A daily gratitude practice helps your mind re-frame negative situations, see the best in people, and come to a healthy place of acceptance. Expressed gratitude and meaningful social connections also release oxytocin in the brain lessening the burden you feel with life. 

-Serve Somebody: Acts of service or volunteering may seem like added stressors, but if you set some healthy boundaries around the practice you can experience a profound sense of peace. You feel better and release serotonin when you show generosity. Sometimes the best way to get out of your own head is to reach out and serve someone else. You may be giving to someone else but your own mind, body, and soul will thank you for it. 

This holiday season, experience a deep sense of rest by giving your brain the break it truly deserves. We hope you find the space for a little happiness and contentment. Take care of you and be merry.

Then and Now

How to Create this Magical Mix

The holidays are a busy time of year for event planners. From parties to Thanksgiving feasts, and of course, the big corporate holiday parties in December, there is plenty to do to get ready for the seasonal festivities. One way to keep your events fresh and meaningful is to consider a then-and-now approach. This time of year is special because nostalgia fills the air. As an event planner, you can keep the hustle-and-bustle stress far away from your event by using nostalgia as a way to add wonder and magic back into the season for attendees. We all have moments of magic in our lives to draw from. Someone or something, somewhere, at some point, generously impacted our lives. When we embrace these memories, we pull our pasts, presents, and futures together adding extra doses of meaning to our lives. As an event planner, you have the opportunity to help your attendees embrace the past in ways that make the most out of the season in one, single event. Here’s how: 


Consider some out-of-the-box food themes that will add a dash of then to the now of your event. Try themes such as Cookies and Milk for Santa, Momma’s Hot Cocoa bar, or Bonfire Snacks complete with roasted hot dogs, marshmallows, and popcorn. Add a dash of now by asking your caterer to put a creative, gourmet spin on foods and cocktails that carry nostalgic feels.   


Some believe if snow is in the forecast that we should all stay inside. But snow is magical! What if you did something different? What if you put up some heat lamps, provided fluffy blankets, and added a sleigh ride to your list of activities? Maybe this sounds farfetched and it would certainly require some extra planning, but getting your attendees comfortably out into the wonder of sparkling snow would be a nostalgic showstopper! Here’s the point: use the weather to your advantage and don’t let a little accumulation stop any fun.  


We all have a favorite childhood board game or two. This just in…vintage games are back! Use these as centerpieces and encourage your attendees to play. Or gather your guests for a good, old-fashioned game of charades. A well-timed game or activity can be a wonderful way to spark gatherings to life. Especially, if you add some favorite childhood games to the mix. 

Encourage a little Creativity

Arts and crafts get a bad rap at parties. Don’t let that stop you from adding a thoughtfully designed moment of creativity to your event. The quickest way to awaken the inner child is through hands-on art. Not to mention, artistic activities are a great way to generate some team bonding. Try trendy, stylish art forms that your attendees will love taking home – glass etching, customized soaps, terrariums, handmade beard oils, and sugar scrubs just to name a few!  

In the end, all that matters is that people feel honored and moved by these events. Every intentional act on your part adds to the deepening of team bonds, shared meaning, and laughter, just like when we were kids. The reckless fun, the small artistic moments, the meaningful details, and the simple act of trying something just a little bit out-of-the-box, it all gifts your gatherings with the closeness of freedom, like the days of our youth. So, this holiday season, add a little then to the now and watch the magic unfold.

Victory of Light

Join us for Victory of Light presented by Body Mind Spirit Celebration this November as they return to Cincinnati! This event is the perfect opportunity to explore everything the holistic community has to offer, with a wide selection of psychics, mediums, alternative health and wellness products, and learning sessions featuring experts in the field. Whether you’re looking for insights or just an evening of fun, Victory of Light is the perfect event for you. So bring a friend and join us for an exciting weekend filled with possibilities! 

November 19, 2022 10:00 am – 7:00 pm. 

$15 Admission

Crafting Moments

A few years ago, a ground-breaking book surfaced for business owners, event planners, teachers, leaders, parents, and…well everybody! It was called the Power of Moments, by Chip and Dan Heath. In their book, the Heath brothers lay out a recipe for creating meaningful moments in people’s lives. They researched what factors are behind some of the most memorable events that exist for people and why. 

Here is their recipe for meaningful moments and a few ideas on how you can spin this emotional recipe into some Halloween fun.

Meaningful Moments include:

Elevation: Defining moments rise above the everyday. They provoke not just transient happiness, like laughing at a friend’s joke, but memorable delight. Moments of elevation transcend the normal course of events; they are literally extraordinary. 

Halloween Spin: Go ahead! Hire that DJ, contact a Mixologist, and rent the fireworks for your all-out Halloween extravaganza! These added details create moments of elevation that your guests are sure to remember. 

Insight: Defining moments rewire our understanding of ourselves or the world. In a few seconds or minutes, we realize something that might influence our lives for decades.

Halloween Spin: Take time for a special toast to the memories you’re creating with the people you love. Even at Halloween, people need to remember that life is precious.  

Pride: Defining moments capture us at our best–moments of achievement, moments of courage. 

Halloween Spin: Costume contest! You have to have one. Be sure to create, creative, thoughtful awards to honor your guests and reward all the effort they put into their spooky designs.

Connection: Defining moments are social: weddings, graduations, baptisms, vacations, work triumphs, bar and bat mitzvahs, speeches, and sporting events. These moments are strengthened because we share them with others.

Halloween Spin: Consider the purpose of your gathering and invite the people who can set the right tone for the evening. Consider inviting old friends to meet new friends. Or have the neighbors over for a Halloween-themed block party. Maybe you want a mixture of your closest friends and family – people you can really unwind with. If you’re planning a corporate event, a party for a client, or a party at your local church or school, make sure you consider the people FIRST. Think about what it will take to help them feel comfortable and relaxed together so that you can achieve your purpose. 

This book inspires the idea that human beings are changed for the better and more connected when they experience special moments together. Grab the book and have a Happy Halloween!

Ohio Order of the Eastern Star “WE’VE A STORY TO TELL” Grand Chapter Session

Don’t miss this opportunity to attend the 133rd “WE’VE A STORY TO TELL” Grand Chapter Session of the Ohio Order of the Eastern Star Thursday through Sunday, September 22-25! This is a wonderful chance to meet other Eastern Star members from throughout Ohio and the United States, and to hear inspiring speeches from the most honorable grand officers. In addition, this is a great opportunity to learn more about the order and how you can get involved in its many meaningful initiatives. So mark your calendar and plan to attend the Grand Chapter Session in September 2022. Register today!

Real Connection at Conferences

7 Tips on How to Lose Stuffiness and Create Connection

We’ve all been there. Standing around a high-top table at the post-session networking happy hour, listening to some CEO drudge on and on about their accomplishments, how they graduated from Yale, and, of course, about the three beautiful children at home and their many accomplishments. It’s not that we don’t want to hear about another person’s life. But, we tend to pull out our showy sides in these environments. The air is filled with one-upmanship, and we can’t seem to reveal anything fresh, raw, or honest. The saddest part is everyone attends a conference to learn and collaborate in meaningful ways, but that’s not happening if real, human connection isn’t happening. As an event planner, you can try something different! Let’s check out some ideas inspired by gathering guru, Priya Parker.

If you want to create more connection and meaning at your next conference or gathering, try a small dinner the night before the event. You and your team can create multiple small dinners if you want to include everyone or choose 12-15 people who you think need to connect. Here are some tips on how to create the kind of depth missing from stuffy, puffy conferences through an intimate dinner:

  1. Set a clear goal for the evening. Something like turn off all networking switches, elevator pitches, and help people to connect authentically. 
  2. Focus on normal preparations that support your goal. For example, choose a private space with low lighting, warm candles, comfort food, and good wine. Your invitation should go out to no more than 15 people and explain as explicitly as possible the intentions of the evening. Tell people what they can leave at the door – work accomplishments, resumes, and pre-planned speeches for sure! 
  3. Choose an enriching theme. For example, “nothing related to work,” “stuff we want to say, but don’t,” “what I know now,” or Priya Parker’s famous theme “a good life.” 
  4. Give some thought to the structure of the conversation. Will you encourage everyone to share their thoughts through toasts? Through a game of some kind? Or will you come up with your own creative twist? 
  5. Welcome your guests as they enter, handing them cocktails and making many introductions. This entrance sets the tone for the evening ensuring your guests feel comfortable, appreciated, known, and seen.
  6. Create name cards and consider your goal when establishing a seating order.
  7. Begin the dinner by raising a glass and thanking guests for attending the dinner. Be sure to note the rules for the evening and why you chose the theme.

Here are a few important rules Priya suggests:

-“Leave your success at the door. No need to slip in an accomplishment.”

-“Tell us something that would surprise us.” 

-“Treat this evening more like a wedding than a conference.”

-“Begin each share by telling us a story and signal the end of the story by raising a glass to the lesson or value behind the story.”

-“The last person to share has to sing their story.” (This ensures people launch into stories right away.)

There you have it! A fun and relatively easy way to add a dash of interest and intimacy to the worn-out conference model. We become better people when we both share what is vulnerable and lean in to listen to each other. Human connection creates meaning and meaning creates a successful experience that attendees are sure to remember. For more profound tips like this, pick up Priya Parker’s book, The Art of Gathering. If you’re looking for a warm, private space for your next event at Sharonville Convention Center, The Hyatt Place has many options available. Third Eye Brewery is also a fun space with quiet corners to relax and have a more intimate evening. 

Beat the Heat

Tips and Tricks for Outdoor Events in the Summer 

As the hottest month of the season rolls in, we start to get antsy. The flowers are in full bloom, everything is green, the skies are blue, and all you want to do is be outside – but not sweating through your clothes at a formal event. As an event planner, dealing with hot weather can be tricky. On one hand, everyone wants to be outside enjoying the nostalgic sights and smells of summer. But on the other hand, an event is easily ruined by sweaty brows, mosquitoes, and sunburn. Here are some tips and tricks to help you keep your cool when the temperatures soar.

– Plan for the heat: If your event is during the hot summer months, make sure to plan accordingly. Choose a venue that is in a shady spot–this will help keep your guests cool and comfortable. Renting a tent is also a good option as it can provide some relief from the harsh sunlight.

-Schedule your event during cooler hours: If possible, avoid scheduling your event during the hottest hours of the day. Plan for it to start earlier in the morning or later in the evening when the temperature has cooled down.

– Prepare your guests: Send out invitations with a dress code that reflects the heat. For example, ” cocktail attire” or ” summer chic.” Encourage guests to wear light-colored clothing and comfortable shoes. Add a note on the invitation about bringing sunscreen, mosquito repellent, and hats.

– Keep everyone hydrated: Have plenty of water on hand and make sure that waitstaff are circulating with drinks throughout the event. You might also want to offer refreshing fruit juices and iced teas. And don’t forget the ice! Serve food that is cool and easy to eat, like salads, chilled soups, and sushi. Set up special areas where guests can get relief from the heat, like cooling stations with fans or mist. 

The summer weather should be enjoyed not endured especially at fun social gatherings. 

With a little extra planning, your event can become the highlight of the season!

Council/Forum on Aging

Hundreds of professionals from southwestern Ohio and northern Kentucky will convene at the annual Forum on Aging conference on August 24-25th. This two-day event will offer 12 continuing education units for social workers, nurses, activity professionals, and nursing home administrators. Topics of discussion will include creative approaches to elder care, emerging trends in the field, and best practices for promoting independence and quality of life for older adults. The conference will also feature a variety of interactive sessions and networking opportunities. Register today to reserve your spot at this important event!