San Diego Botanical Gardens – Melanie and Tim’s Wedding

Client: Melanie (maiden name: Lehman) and Tim Allen
Venue: San Diego Botanic Gardens – The Walled Garden (ceremony) and The Victorian Gazebo (reception)
Venue Address: 230 Quail Gardens Drive
Number of guests: 75
Services Provided: DJ and Master of Ceremonies, Dance Floor Lighting, Video Montage, Wedding Ceremony

Wedding Coordination: The Creative Music DJ (hey, it happens.)
Photography: Rachel Wattson Photography
Catering: Sombreros Catering

In January of this year I was contracted by Melanie and Tim to provide services for their wedding. They had reviewed my blog and were ready to sign up at our first meeting, which was nice. After viewing some example slideshows that I have created for clients, they decided to add that to their package as well.

Melanie and Tim selected the San Diego Botanic Gardens for their venue. The Botanic Gardens is in Encinitas and covers around 35 acres. In those acres, there’s several great spots for weddings, and they went with the gazebo area. Both are very picturesque.

The ceremony was beautiful. Melanie and I had met a few weeks beforehand to finalize wedding details, and she opted the ‘tearjerker’ ceremony package. This is a package which comes with a customized version of the processional song. It’s a package designed to induce tears of joy for all attendees, especially the parents. That’s all I will say about it in the blog, but if you’re a client that is interested, ask about it during our initial consultation and I’ll clue you in on the details. Trust me, if the bride is close to her father, this is a unique addition that will be remembered forever.

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The bridesmaids entered to Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours”, and Melanie walked down the aisle to Matisyahu’s “One Day”.

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DJ Dennis J at The Walled Garden

Dinner was catered by Sombrero’s Mexican Catering, and was delicious. Afterwards, the bride and groom danced to Jason Michael Carroll’s “Living Our Love Song”.

For the father/daughter dancea, Melanie’s dad had something special planned which him and I had secretly worked out the details about. As I started the dance, I played a ‘filler track’ while her dad passed out pamphlets explaining to all guests where Melanie’s nickname “Hood” came from (she was really into a Sam the Sham song when she was younger…). Melanie had no idea what was being passed out as she waited on the dance floor for her dad to join her for the dance. Her dad made his way to the dance floor, and proceeded to start to dance with his daughter. As the dance began, he reached into his pocket and pulled out a red hood with horns, and I quickly switched to the real dance song he had chosen, “Lil’ Red Riding Hood” by Sam the Sham and The Pharoahs!

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Melanie \”Hood\” Allen and her father

For the mother/son dance, Tim and his mother danced to “Fishin’ in the Dark” by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. I don’t have a picture of this yet, unfortunately.

After the parent dances, we had a bit of open dancing, and gave it a chance to get dark. Once the sun had gone down, we paused dancing for a bit to present the video montage for everyone to enjoy. For this event, I went with my DJ Screen lycra projector screen. Being that we were outside, this screen works well and also looks pretty unique and impressive.

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Tim and Melanie enjoying their custom-created wedding video montage

Following the montage, we did bouquet and garter tosses.

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Garter Toss at San Diego Botanic Gardens

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Bouquet Toss at San Diego Botanic Gardens

Afterwards, we went back to dancing and the dance floor stayed full until the end of the night.

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The night was a huge success, full of customization and surprises. Afterwards, Melanie and Tim stuck around and said goodbye to their guests. Tim came over and thanked me for my service, and stated, “You were worth every penny!” which was a nice compliment. I took the opportunity to get a picture with him and his new wife.

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DJ Dennis J with the bride and groom at Botanic Gardens

Congratulations to Tim and Melanie Allen, and thanks to them once again for inviting me to be a part of their special night. And also a special thanks to Rachel Wattson for providing me with many of the excellent pictures that were used in this writeup!

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