Sunday, 27 September 2015

11 Tips on Holding a Wedding or Event on Public and Private Land.

Event Management-Tasman New Zealand
Public & Private Venue Locations in Tasman & Nelson, New Zealand.

Thank you Find it & Do it Maps for the use of this map.
After the excitement of a proposal the second wind set into the sails to consider your event desire; when, where and how?  The wheels are put into motion to build your perfect dream wedding day, however the list beyond the obvious to do list just keeps growing.  Many feel it is a task they can handle alone but as the date draws closer the reality of managing your own event with the emotion of not wanting to fall out with those friends and family members who offered at first but then lose momentum or lack of communication skills brings to light the benefits of engaging an event manager.  A good local event manager would have done all the hard graft through years of experience and will make light work of your event and potentially make savings not just financially but in time investment and stress levels that are set to challenge even the most experienced.

In Nelson and Tasman the choice of ceremony venues are immense however most couples want to get married at a spot that has significant meaning to them, other have had a lifelong dream leaving some others where budget will dictate on the final decision. 

We are lucky enough to have some of the most stunning council property locations and Parks and beaches and these are all to be considered for the negative as well as the positive issues, as making the decision is the easy part.

Examples of Public Gardens in Tasman; The region has several nice gardens, ideal for a more boutique or casual event, for example the beautiful Pethybridge Garden in Motueka, which is more commonly known “Rose Garden” for its abundant selection of roses against the back drop of white fence and pergola giving it some old time charm. An alternative Motueka venue is Sanctuary Ponds, with its dripping willows, cute wooden bridge and lush green grass.  Just round the corner you will find the Janie Seddon boat wreck to add to the dramatic back drop of a perfect wedding photo shoot.
Also available is the Washbourn Garden in Richmond, which is popular with the locals and can easily hold a delicate picnic or vintage tea reception.


Golden Bay covers a huge area also under the Tasman district banner with some incredible spots requiring council or Department of Conservation Permits. Contact The Dream Maker for further advice.

Nelson has a huge selection of public gardens and reserves, too many to list here (if you follow the link you can find out more)
These gardens & reserves can also be used as an alternative for the location photographs and at particular times of the year they will offer superbly well-manicured splendor.
Other options for hire:

Anyone has the right to apply to use these public places but there are rules and expectations. If you are planning as a relevant commercial provider on these locations permission does need to be granted and in some cases a fee must be paid.

The Dream Maker already has the connections and permits where required or the ability to easily direct the arrangements to book the space within the guide lines as put forward by the governing body, all providers approved by the company can work under the Dream Maker umbrella, which not only saves time but means that the event is managed by one manager leaving less by chance.

Here are 10 tips to consider when using public & private

  1. Permits: If you think you don’t need to register your event with the relevant body, such as council or Department of Conservation (Doc) and even a private land owner, you may get a horrible shock on the day of your event.  Either double booking or being asked to move on.  If you hold the confirmation paper work you have the upper hand. The Dream Maker holds the necessary DOC permits to manage events in the Nelson & Tasman National Parks. Other land sometimes used may belong to Iwi and require sensitive consideration and communication within the historic realms of their culture.  Each location has stipulations often under a concession holders legal obligation, for example managing the impact of a group within that environment and keeping to rules such as only having floral bouquets which hold native content or artificial only must be considered. 
  2. Safety and Risk Assessment: A good quality event manager will offer a risk assessment on your behalf to discuss any potential risk to you, your guests the team and the public.  The risk could be road or traffic access and in this case the council would need advanced notice of at least 5 working days and a road control assessment completed and signed off by a qualified road traffic supervisor. Again your manager can save extra costs through experience of providing the correct information saving the council time.  You may be required to use a company such as Fulton Hogan for road signage if your event is likely to produce a traffic issue.
  3. Special Requests: There are few things that the governing bodies will say no to, if you go through the correct channels but any rules set in stone need special attention and discussion. For example if you want a special request like shutting off a road or bringing in a horse drawn cart, safety and minimal disruption to the public will need to be signed off by the council. Communicating can also avoid other problematic issues such as public places that have gates that can be locked at certain times of the day, restricting public access.
  4. Alcohol: most public places have strict rules about alcohol consumption and these rules must be adhered to.  The Dream Maker has exclusive partnerships with private venues in Kaiteriteri and the Tasman region that have less conditions and more flexibility on curfew. The company cannot be held responsible for customers drinking at an event but we can help minimize risk by organizing plenty of food with their catering and transport.  The company does not have a license to purchase but we can pick up your alcohol that you purchased to set it up at the venue. There would be a handling charge.
  5. Parking: consideration for parking must be discussed. Will your guests list be larger than the capacity of the parking? The Dream Maker can organised and manage alternative transport to minimize this issue but also avoid any guests driving if they have been drinking.
  6. Noise: Consideration to neighboring communities and the public must be a priority if a sound system is required for music or speeches.  By law all amplified music requires a council permit, if it is not amplified it does not require a permit. The Dream Maker can on your behalf organize all necessary paper work within its management service. The Dream Maker hires a small battery operated sound system but the lapel microphone requires mains.
  7. Rubbish: The Dream Maker holds an Enviro Bronze award for its efforts in maintaining and protecting the environments it works in. As part of our management service we can organize the flagging off of your desired venue location and offer a clean-up service before your event to ensure no unsightly piles of rubbish or dog feces are within your ceremony or reception location.  Most public places do have rubbish bins but we find these are often full to over flowing. The company management offer a service to insure all bins are freshened up. We also check public toilets facility in the location and offer a beautifying service for that little added touch for your event.  Once your event is over you are required by law to immediately clean up after yourselves and remove everything from the site returning it to its former or improved situation. The company can manage this for you and because of our Enviro Bronze status and company policy we recycled what we can.
  8. Marquees, structures, furniture and gas Bar-BQ’s: Any item depending on size or risk needs permission from the owner or responsible body of the land, this may have a cost and the customer will need to know the expectations for the lands use.  The Dream Maker offers this as part of their management service and will also look at the risks and advise where necessary.  A record of responsibility and action plan will insure that all safety risk is minimized.  The Dream Maker will inform the safety departments if access or when high risk is a concern.
  9. Weather: unfortunately no one has control over the weather but we do have control to be ready should the weather cause a problem.  It is important for you to have an alternative venue or a marquee on site ready for such an eventuality. The Dream maker will discuss options with the customer and learn what would be considered the cut-off point and who is responsible to make that call.  This is when a manager is most valuable; as a call for Plan B requires a tight team and a pre-prepared action plan.
  10. Tide Times:  If you are planning a beach or estuary wedding/event it’s important to check tide times. Some tides can be unusually high and cut off access.  If a Boat or helicopter is planned, the skipper or pilot will have the final say on changing plans based on safety.  The Dream Maker works with approved transport services who all know the protocol.
  11. Exclusive Wedding or Event Venue: There are no ways of being totally confident that the location you choose for your event will be exclusive to you unless you work directly with the owner of the property directly. The Dream Maker has worked hard on their customer’s behalf to gain some pretty incredible exclusive venues where you can feel confident that you and your guests will be the only people at your event.  If exclusivity is important to you then this is something that must be considered however exclusivity normally means cost.

For peace of mind and advice on planning your event please contact

Tel: 0064 (0)27 5268771

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Marriage Equality in NZ:

In June 2014 I was published in Purple Union  after researching the history of Marriage Equality and as the law to allow same sex LGBT marriage in New Zealand was passed I was contacted by several couples asking for me to be their celebrant.  Read Craig and Nicholas beautiful story of a Dream Maker Wedding and honeymoon itinerary event also included.
Most people think it’s quite a modern argument that same sex couples should have the right to be married and celebrate their love with their choice of partner without conditions but if we look back in time it’s been an ongoing subject almost as far back as written history began.
Before Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire same sex couples including emperors of the realm openly married a same sex partner which was seen as completely acceptable but as Christianity took hold in 342 AD a new law was issued by Emperor Constantius prohibiting same sex couples being able to marry and all couples in such a relationship were sentenced to death and so started the attitude that some people did not have the same rights as others.

This set in stone for centuries that a person who felt compelled to love another of same gender would have to be hidden away behind closed doors and risk their safety should the information come out. Frustrations lead to secrecy and manipulation of truths and a lack of understanding and sympathy for a totally normal behavior.
Many gay people felt they were mentally ill or unclean and it lead to great sadness and often suicide? As people were brainwashed through Christian belief they understood that homosexual people were dirty and evil and more likely to commit sexual crimes. There is no study to prove this conclusion.
During the middle Ages on the 16th April 1061 it was recorded, at a time where most believe this kind of behavior would warrant burning at the stake a priest in a small Spanish chapel performed a same-sex marriage between two men Pedro Diaz and Muno Vandilaz. The historic documents found proving the event took place were found in a Monastery of San Salvador de Celanova, once again showing that same sex weddings were acceptable in history and that our modern lives are less accepting and more brain washed than medieval times.
In the early 1900 the taboo subject was explored by a German called George Steindorff who reported that homosexual relationships were common place and often with couples performing a form of marriage commitment probably in secret existed.
Until 1973, there wasn’t any law forbidding same sex couples to be married just the fear of God but astonishingly in January 1973 Maryland in the USA was the first state to ban same sex marriage and over the next 20 years most states in the USA had banned the act.

We have been forced to accept through the bulling religion strong beliefs which governed the modern western law that a same sex couple is un-natural and sinful but as time moves on and more people speak out for equal rights in many areas of difference it has slowly been recognized as unlawful and unacceptable to control the freedom of choice for a person’s needs and desire. These needs and desire are personal and as long as they are not harmful to other living beings should not be frowned upon in any way.
With the AIDS epidemic, more pressure was put onto “homosexual tendencies” as it was nick named, calling AIDS the “gay disease” and once again scare mongering in the media screamed out that the disease could be easily spread with just a touch, thus opening the flood gates of ridicule. Princess Diana broke the fear with her bravery to go against the grain and held the hand of a dying homosexual aide’s victim with her natural tenderness and strength against the negative as if to wash away all speculation.
20140224_115734Many couples have lodged applications through history to be married to the same gender but were refused that right until recently as social media took hold and other like-minded people could openly express their feelings in the world audience from the safety of their own home and found that they were not the only ones fighting what at that time was an isolated losing battle. Many blogs and social media pages started to pop up with a tsunami of support gaining momentum washing away the decades of attitude and bringing the reality to light that the closeted culture had to change and acceptance for our fellow beings rights needed to be addressed.
As early as 1989 Denmark become the first country in the world to recognize same sex unions after passing a bill legalizing “registered partnerships” in a vote of 71-47. Many countries followed suit but the arguments continued against as fast as they became accepted in one area, they would be tightened up in another.
Often the argument was due to peer pressure and as individuals could see the subject loosen they joined the battle for same sex marriage.
With a new millennium came a new thinking as social media grew in popularity and in April 2000 the US state of Vermont was the first to sign a civil union bill ruling same sex couples were entitled to the same rights as opposite sex couples and in turn giving same sex couples the same right of marriage as any other. Holland shortly followed in being the first country to follow suit when they signed a law for same sex marriage in 2001 after a vote of 109 to 33 against.
So attitudes were changing, and I was proud to be part of that thinking and watched from my own small town Kaiteriteri in New Zealand, commenting and fighting where I could for the cause. I saw the tidal wave of events as one place after another followed in those first footsteps.
As a wedding business owner I was obviously excited of the prospect for more business coming my way, however astonished to have comments from fellow business owners in the same industry advising that bringing my business to the attention of same sex couples could be the down fall of my success. I was happy to clearly state that if I was too lose business it would only be from those who could not accept this thinking and that would not be a great loss to me.
DSCF6349As The Dream Maker an event management business before New Zealand accepted Same Sex marriage as legal, I was involved in arranging a civil union for a same sex couple of more than 6 years, prepared to travel from Scotland to New Zealand for their event and celebration. We communicated over the months as I helped perfect their plans for a beach wedding in the Abel Tasman National Park and I learnt of their personal difficulties to be accepted as a couple and our bond grew beyond a professional one into a friendship.
Plans were going well, organizing everything from their groups car hire, accommodation and holiday itinerary with two scenic bus tours taking in wineries and art studios as well as everything they needed for their wedding event. During this planning the hype of a law change in New Zealand grew almost overnight and each day a new announcement of another state in the USA would cross our screens and soon a date was set for the vote to take place in New Zealand.
It was the encouragement of this couple who asked if I would be their celebrant for the civil union. I applied to become New Zealand Civil Union and Marriage Celebrant and was delighted to be accepted. Anticipating a civil union, we sat on the edge of our seats to hear a vote of 77 for and 44 against in parliament accompanied with some of the most iconic speeches ever read in the government house, we were in shock to hear the confirmation announcement “New Zealand had become the 13th (lucky for some) country and the first in the Oceania to legalize same sex marriage”, which came into effect on 19th August 2013.
In February 2014 my couple finally arrived on the golden sands of Kaiteriteri in dapper matching cream suits, striking red ties and with a tidy flax thistle button hole to symbolize their Scottish attachment. With their small group of family and friends we embarked on the sea limousine charter and sailed the crest of the waves under a clear blue sky to a tiny little bay called paradise aptly named by the locals on a small island nature reserve called Fisherman’s where a dream team greeted us on the beautiful pre-styled beach for their ceremony. It wasn’t my first wedding but it was my first same sex couple and with utter honor I performed the legal requirements with a personal touch and emotion to celebrate this incredible day.
Their celebration continued with song and chatter of the guests in harmony with the native bird song in complete joy with the distant chime of the golden harp and the gently kissing waves all accompanied by a stunning picnic of locally produced deliciousness and award winning local wine. We finished off the trip by taking the group on a scenic cruise into the stunning Abel Tasman National Park, famous for its seals native bush and bird song before returning to Kaiteriteri. After a rest they enjoyed an intimate reception in a local restaurant that’s view reached out to the Island keeping the atmosphere of the day going late into the night.

I am proud that every provider contracted through the Dream Maker for wedding products and service welcomes all couples without question, whatever their shape, colour or sex and I am excited to continue to bring more same sex couples together in marriage but with each couples comes a story of frustration that they have been deprived of their freedom, some for decades but all have been able to set that behind them for a much brighter future, knowing that this negativity will never have a hold on them or other couples again.
So from all corners of the world, we welcome with open arms couples to share our beautiful slice of heaven, capture forever their moment in time, the fresh smells, the blue skies and clear water, the wild life and friendly local atmosphere, our welcoming hospitality and sunshine hours are all abundant and a tonic to sooth any heart!
To find out how I can help you with a dream event follow this link:  The Dream Maker Same Sex LGBT Weddings in New Zealand.

We also have this stunning Same Sex wedding video Peppers Awaroa Lodge in The Abel Tasman National park

All the people we work with are LGBT friendly.