Since 2003, Naper Settlement has offered the perfect, one-stop wedding destination for newly engaged couples looking to make their special day one to remember. Brides and grooms can meet with over 50 exhibitors from all over the Chicago area at Naper Settlement’s Wedding Showcase on Saturday, January 7 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. located at 523 S. Webster St., Naperville. The showcase will take place in the Pre-Emption House and Century Memorial Chapel, a historic, nondenominational chapel, which is the highlight of the showcase. Admission is free. For more information, call (630) 420-6010 or visit www.napersettlement.org/weddings.
Carol Sawka, the owner of Ócie Floral, has been providing fine florals for weddings and events for over 25 years. Although she said many of the weddings she’s done have been magical, among her favorites were imitating a bride’s previous residency in Tuscany, Italy by including the country’s vibrant colors, sunflowers and fruits. At another wedding, Sawka incorporated actual leaves from Aspen, Colorado that the bride had mailed to her.
“My favorite part of my job is getting to know our brides. To listen to who they are and what they want their wedding to be,” said Sawka. “Many times it’s helping them find a theme that is meaningful to them and try to take that theme and incorporate it throughout all the planning. We believe that the more personal input of a wedding the more memorable it becomes to all the guests.”
Sawka believes expos like the Wedding Showcase are beneficial for brides and grooms to get inspiration and ideas as to where to go and what vendors work well with different venues.
“Nowadays weddings take place in very different settings,” said Sawka. “Finding vendors who have the ability to adapt and support these unusual weddings is foremost in their minds.”
An exciting addition to this year’s showcase is the newly opened reception venue and banquet hall, Elements at Water Street, which is located across from Naper Settlement on Aurora Ave. The hospitality staff are very excited to show off their rustic menu and the venue’s contemporary interior.
“It is always more comforting to make a big decision like this when you have combed over the local options,” said David Miller, Element’s Managing Partner, on why it’s important for brides and groom to attend local showcases. “The reception venue, the food and the sheer wedding environment must align with a bride and groom’s vision. When you can take the time and choose carefully and wisely, you can rest assured that your special day will be a special part of your new beginning.”
Naperville Convention and Visitors Bureau are also bringing a few vendors to this year’s showcase to show all the incredible options located in Naperville. Vendors will include Embassy Suites by Hilton Chicago Naperville, Topgolf Naperville, Courtyard by Marriott Naperville, Country Inn & Suites, Maggiano’s Little Italy, NIU Naperville Center, Chicago Marriott Naperville and North Central College.
“There is such an array of restaurants, caterers, banquet facilities, nightlife and entertainment that truly make Naperville an ideal place to host a wedding for any size and budget,” said Rebecca Farver, Naperville CVB’s Director of Sales. “The venues we have partnered with this year truly have a passion for being creative, providing customization and will ensure they take the visions one has and make them come to life.”
From cake to limos, brides and grooms will be able to have personal consultations with each vendor to figure out what they’ll need to plan their ideal wedding. Some participating vendors have also donated items as raffle prizes and brides who receive a stamp at participating booths will be eligible to enter.
Attendees will also be able to step inside Naper Settlement’s Century Memorial Chapel. Built in 1864, the charm and elegance of the Chapel comes through in its original stained glass windows and pews. With seating for up to 175 guests, the Century Memorial Chapel is the perfect setting for a wedding ceremony.
Wedding Showcase exhibitors include Music By Design, A Perfect Pair Event Boutique, Alicia’s Photography, Ócie Floral, Photography by Scott Pfeiffer, CR Custom Designs, The Morton Arboretum, Sounds Abound Entertainment, Hinsdale Travel, Hyatt House and Hyatt Place, Arrowhead Golf Club, R.B. Photography & Video, At Your Service Limousines, Inc., Viking Travel Service, Dana DiGuilio Bridal Hair & Make Up, Service Ministries, Whimsical Designs, Spare Wheels Transportation, Kramer Photographers, Abbington Distinctive Banquets, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Walden Floral Design Co., Elements at Water Street and Hotel Indigo, Floral Events, Greenstar Paperie, Lorenzo’s Formal Wear, MLP Events, Total Image Bridal, Edward Weiland Photography, Tall Tree Ink, Alfresco Booth, Jos. A. Bank, Satin Chair Covers Rental Inc., Forever & Always Events, Chiro One , Hilton Garden & Residence Inn, Studio 10 Naperville, Elisa & Lynne Homes, Jim Perona Guitar, Inc., The Brass String Chamber Ensemble, Formally Modern Tuxedo, Menguin, Flawless Beauty by Nicole Richardson,Karl Knutson Boutique Entertainment, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Island Getaways and SpringHill Suites.