The 2nd Annual Planners Suite Conference took place on January 30th and 31st at the Bellevue Conference and Event Center in Chantilly, VA That’s right, this time around, we could not contain the content to just 1 day! As attendees walked into the foyer, they were greeted by the incomparable the Planners Suite Team, handed a badge, and given the opportunity to take a photo under The Planners Suite Sign with Derrick Davis Photography.
After a quick photo, they walked into the massive space, of course, the first thing they saw were the colossal chandeliers hovering above their seats as their eyes hovered over the palm trees and pineapple centerpieces crafted by Maryam Flowers. This year's theme took our attendees on "vacation" so that they could relax, rejuvenate, refresh, and renew themselves in order to "Turn Up The Heat" on their business. Attendees found their seats were marked with beautiful personalized magnolia leaves on top of the event program - crafted by Blush Events Boutique and Dionisa's Designs. Once settled, they headed to the back to enjoy breakfast provided by Rochelle Meyers Catering. We hear the candied bacon was quite the delight!
Because of the size of the space, we were able to have a few vendors inside the room for our attendees to chat with - DTT by L. Green. From Mommas Kitchen, It Works, InteleTravel, and Wedding Wire just to name a few. Some booths even worked together. Divine Glam Artistry provided mini makeovers right before attendees took some beautiful headshots with C-Suite Pics throughout the day.
Before attendees even had a chance to soak in the beauty of the space, the event had begun. Emcee, Shelby Tuck-Horton, welcomed ensured the attendees that they made the right decision by investing in themselves for the next 2 days. She asked attendees to use their table names - refresh, renew, resuscitate, rejuvenate, revive etc - in order to create their affirmation for the new year!
She then brought the brain behind The Planners Suite, Jon’ll Boyd, to the stage, who then let them know that this is the year that they WILL turn up the heat on their businesses this year! Then of course, in Planners Suite Style, a selfie challenge took place - however, this wasn't just any selfie challenge. The best of the best selfies were selected and those winners received prizes!
From there, the show began. Wedding Wire's Andrew Whitaker spoke on a guide to Millennial Couples, followed by Sarah Campbell, who played a game of "The Price is Right" to help attendees understand what they should really be charging!
After such a morning, planner’s then took their learning across the hall into their Round Table Discussion, where they would have in-depth conversations regarding topics such as Vendor Relationship, Financial Analysis, and Branding. We heard nothing but great relationships being built and plenty of knowledge being absorbed.
After the discussions ended, attendees came back to a delicious lunch provided by Putting on the Ritz. We even gave them some treats from All in the Glaze Cupcakes and From Mommas Kitchen! After we fed their bellies, we continued to feed their minds with Day One Keynote - Sasha Souza - who reminded them that if they show they are worth it, someone will pay for it.
The day continued when Jon'll Boyd took to the stage and reminded our attendees the importance of a team, followed by Darryl Wilson who told everyone the value in "Taking the Damn Risk". Eddie Fam then reminded us that though we do events for profit, we also must do them for the betterment of the community and the world.
Closing out Day 1 was was none other than Cheryl Wood. She came in with her pom poms in hand, and spoke on the power that each and every person in the room had in them in order to be their best self! She left many with a smile and some in tears, but overall, she ended the first day with a bang!
After all of that, you would think the day was over, right? Not at all! Attendees headed over to the mixer in order to enjoy an evening of great food, a few cocktails, conversations with a set of new vendors, and of course, great music by the one and only DJ Classix. We saw nothing but the constant exchange of advice, laughs, and business cards. Attendees finished a very long, very impactful day in celebration with one another.