Two things we love about this wedding and the couple who planned it: first, they wanted a classy venue in downtown Milwaukee; and second they knew the importance of quality wedding photography.
Their venue, The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, proved to be an awesome choice right in the middle of downtown. And Nikki Winter Photography took some amazing images that they will cherish for a lifetime. We also loved that they used Petals Floral Design for their beautiful flowers.
Comparing Wedding Costs
Remember that not all weddings are created equal, so be aware of this when comparing their costs. For example, this wedding had a larger guest count at 275, which brought up their total costs. However, they didn’t hire a videographer or photo booth which saved them some money.
- Number of Guests: 275
- Ceremony: Old Saint Mary Parish
- Reception: Marcus Center for the Performing Arts
- Total Costs: $35,300
Wedding Essentials ($3,700):
- Invitations/Stationery: $200
- Wedding Cake: $500
- Wedding Photographer: $2,000
- Flowers: $1,000 (included: 25 centerpieces, 7 bouquets, 17 boutonnieres, 2 flower girl head wreathes and 7 wrist corsages)
Reception and Ceremony Costs ($29,000)
- Ceremony: $450 (included church rental and officiant)
- Ceremony Music: $150 (violin player and organ)
- Reception: $25,000 (included food, drinks, ballroom rental, staff and set up)
- Desserts: $2,000
- DJ: $700
- Rentals: $700 (chair covers)
Attire, Jewelry and Beauty ($1,310):
- Dress: $750
- Groom’s Attire: $0 (free with groomsmen rentals)
- Bride’s Shoes $30
- Bride’s Ring: $450
- Bride’s Hair and Make-up: $80 (make-up done by a friend for free)
Other Costs ($1,290):
- Rehearsal Dinner: $1,000
- Wedding Party Gifts: $60
- Favors: $80
- Hotel Suite: $150
- Transportation: $0 (free from groom’s employer)
A Note from the Bride and Groom
We asked the bride and groom to tell us about their planning and budgeting process, and this is what they had to say:
When planning our wedding we knew that the location would play a very big part because we both come from large families and had a lot of friends locally that would attend. We also wanted to have the church and venue near one another since we had so many guests coming from out of state.
We decided to spend more money on our reception venue, The Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, because we loved the central location downtown, the ballroom was beautiful, and the chef was exceptional. We didn’t have to spend a lot of money on decorations because the ballroom already had the elegant feel we wanted.
One of the best decisions we made was having Nikki Winter Photography capture our big day. Zach’s mom is involved in photography and had really stressed to us the importance of timeless wedding photos. She and Bobby did such an amazing job capturing all of the special moments throughout the day as well as all of the intricate details we included to make the day our own. They truly make your wishes a priority while incorporating their professional vision.
Dj Quadi made planning the music for our reception fun and easy. He was knowledgeable on all the different aspects on how to get a couple hundred people on the dance floor and stay there all night. We had guests of all ages and his knowledge of music covered all genres and generations which was important to us. Quadi’s professionalism and energy assured us that our reception would be nothing short of amazing.
For couples planning their wedding and figuring out budgets, focus on what is important and necessary for you to have. We felt that having a large classy venue in the middle of downtown, beautiful photography, and an awesome DJ were essential. We considered a few extra things such as a photo booth or videographer, however we just felt it wasn’t as important. Make your day special and take your time on details that mean a lot to you.
– Megan and Zach, Bride and Groom
A BIG thanks to the bride and groom, Megan and Zack for sharing their awesome Marcus Center wedding and to Nikki Winter Photography for the photos!
If you’re currently working on your wedding budget, make sure to read through our previous articles featuring real Milwaukee wedding cost breakdowns.