Client:Don and Nicole
Venue:San Diego Botanic Garden – Gazebo Lawn
Wedding Planner:Amy June Weddings and Events
Venue Coordinator:Jennifer Bergren
Photography:Acqua Photo (Shane and Jen)
Caterer:The Flavor Chef (Lance)
Florist:Franco’s Flowers (Karen)
Cake:V.G. Donuts and Bakery (Blaire)
Tables/Linens: Allie’s Party Rentals

Introduced by Amy, Don and Nicole were looking for a DJ that could incorporate American music with Greek favorites, and also that they could just specify a genre for dinner hour (in this case 50s and 60s pop) and have the DJ ‘run with it’ without needing any additional direction. I pride myself on my broad range of music knowledge, so this worked well for me.

San Diego Botanic Garden Wedding Reception

Grand Entrance (Wedding Party): Eminence Front – The Who
Grand Entrance (Newlyweds) Panther In Crime – The Night Marchers
Dinner Music: 50s and 60s playlist (Bobby Darin, Ritchie Valens, etc.)
First Dance: I Will – The Beatles
Mother Daughter Dance: Stand By Me – Ben E. King
Mother Son Dance: What a Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong
Cake Cutting: La Bamba – Ritchie Valens / Sugar,Sugar – The Archies
Greek Dances: Pentozalis – Haralampos Garganourakis Ti Allo Thelis Pio Poli – Valentis Pitsirika – Gianoulis Vazaios
Last Dances: Only You – Yazoo Don’t Stop Believing – Journey

They had their wedding at San Diego Botanic Garden, which I’ve been to several times. It has its own set of challenges, but knowledge of that particular venue really does help to ensure a successful event.

The garden offers a variety of garden settings for a wedding, and Don and Nicole chose to have their reception on the large Gazebo Lawn Garden.

Grand Entrance

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1976

Toasts

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1981

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1982

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1983

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1984

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1985

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1986

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1987

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1988

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1989

First Dance

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1977

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1978

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1979

Mother Son Dance

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1990

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1991

Mother Daughter Dance

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1992

Wedding Dancing I

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1999

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2000

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2001

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2003

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2004

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2007

Cake Cutting

After a bit of dancing we took a break to cut the cake.

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1994

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1995

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1996

Wedding Dancing II

For the second set of open dancing, we started with some Greek dances and got everyone involved. The guests really got into it, enjoying it just by mimicking the movements of those that knew the traditional steps.

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1997

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2008

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2009

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2010

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2011

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2012

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2013

This dance floor seriously stayed packed all night long. At times, it was so packed I had to grab my own camera and take some shots so I could remember the exhilaration of the moment!

-San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1968

-San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1969

-San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding Greek Dancing

Post-reception

Don and Nicole graciously posed with me for my signature post-reception photo.

San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding DJ

Review

Here’s the review of me, posted by Nicole on Yelp. I love the amount of detail she put into it!

Posted 10/13/2012

We had Dennis DJ our wedding last month and truly could not have been happier with the selection. If you don’t read another word of this review, simply take away my 100% without hesitation recommendation of Dennis’ DJ services.

At our first meeting with Dennis, it was instantly apparent that he was more than capable. His music knowledge alone was beyond impressive. At that time, we didn’t yet have very specific ideas of what sort of “vibe” we wanted for the wedding but we knew what we didn’t want. We didn’t want to hear any typical corny wedding songs (see: We Are Family), we didn’t want any trance/House-type music, and we didn’t want a cringe-worthy cheesy DJ. I personally wanted to hear lots of 50s and 60s golden oldies during dinner as a tribute to my dad who loved oldies so much. Dennis completely understood our concerns and said he prided himself on NOT being one of those cheesy wedding DJs and was happy to oblige any of our music preferences. Basically, we just wanted to keep the dance floor packed all night long.

We booked Dennis for our reception DJ a couple of days after our meeting and were confident that we had made an excellent choice. And we were so right!
We had one special request for Dennis. My family is Greek and we wanted to do a few traditional Greek dances. Emailing back and forth with Dennis in the weeks prior to the wedding, he was very helpful suggesting times in the night when we could do the Greek dancing while still keeping the party going. I was thrilled that he was so happy to help us make the night go as smoothly as possible.

The wedding reception was better than we could have imagined. When introducing our family members giving toasts, Dennis was eloquent and energetic. He was sure to know the names of each speaker and their relation to us. During the Mother-Son dance and the Mother-daughter dance, Dennis helped to make the moment so special with his kind words and remarkable introduction. The evening felt very personal, exactly what we wanted. We even had guests ask if Dennis was a friend of ours, as he seemed to know us so well.

On to the party! Dennis did an AMAZING job of incorporating all our selected song preferences into the evening. Everyone loved the oldies during dinner and before the toasts. All of the kids were on the dance floor doing the twist which provided some fantastic dinnertime entertainment and gave us some amazing photos. Once the open dancing started, Dennis was brilliant at reading the crowd. He played song after song of our favorite dance tunes which kept the crowd moving all night long. He even put on some classic 90s hip-hop which everyone loved. We had provided him with a list of songs that we wanted to be played during the night and he incorporated them in perfectly to keep up the party mood.

Dennis also offers various lighting options to enhance the reception atmosphere. Since our reception would be help outdoors in the evening, he suggested dance floor lighting to provide more lighting for the photos and to really spotlight the dance floor. His prices for lighting are also extremely reasonable. Looking back, we are so pleased we included dance floor lighting. The photos really did turn out better with the added illumination and our guests felt like we had put a lot of thought into the aesthetics of the reception.

Now, weeks later, we STILL have friends and family commenting on the music at our reception. Everyone was beyond impressed with the way he seemed to know exactly what song we wanted to hear next and appeared to be having fun himself. A few people even said that it was the best wedding reception they have ever attended! What an incredible compliment.

If you truly want a wedding reception to remember, one that your guests will be talking about for weeks, months, and years to come… Choose Dennis, the Creative Music DJ.

Photos of The Creative Music DJ

Some great photos taken by Acqua Photography of yours truly.

-San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 1998

-San Diego Botanic Gardens Wedding 2006

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