Wednesday, September 20, 2017

5 Ideas We Love For Fall Weddings

Fall wedding season is upon us! We love each season for its own unique reasons, and today Country Jewell has listed 5 of our favorite autumn wedding ideas that we expect to see over the next couple of months. If you're just beginning to plan your wedding at our rustic wedding venue near Knoxville for next year, you may want to incorporate a few of these. Some are simple enough to even be added to weddings happening this year. 


Colorful Leaves
All of those gorgeous colors that appear in the trees, and eventually on the ground as the leaves fall, are a perfect natural color scheme for any fall wedding. You can use leaves in rich shades in lots of different ways. For example, the flower girl can carry a basket full of colorful leaves to sprinkle down the aisle instead of flower petals. Guests can even throw them instead of confetti or bird seed. That will make some amazing photographs with the leaves falling all around the two of you! 

They can easily be incorporated into centerpiece arrangements, and leaves of many colors make wonderful table runners. Your florist may even be able to creatively incorporate this natural decor into the gentleman's boutonnieres. 

Pumpkins
Nothing says fall like pumpkins! You see them everywhere this time of year. Their natural orange color is beautiful on its own, or you can jazz them up by painting them a solid white or gold color to use for decoration. They make excellent decor placed on either side of the ceremony aisle, and you can even carve them out and use them to hold candles that glow romantically once the sun goes down. Mini pumpkins can be used to hold tealights on the reception tables, and they are also great escort cards that double as favors when you paint guest's names on them. 


Sunflowers
These big, bright, beautiful blooms bring a cheery look to any bouquet or centerpiece. You could even wear one in your hair. Sunflowers look grand on their own, and we've also seen lots of them used together to make some impressive pomanders. 

If you'll be using a lot of sunflowers in your wedding decor, it would make perfect sense to give guests pretty bags of edible sunflower seeds for a wedding favor, or the type of seeds that they can plant at home and "watch your love grow."   

Apples
Apples are abundant in autumn, and they are a great addition to any buffet table. Apple pies will be well-received on a dessert table, especially if you pair each slice with a scoop of cinnamon ice cream. You could also set up a caramel apple making station, with melted caramel and chocolate, plus additional toppings to sprinkle on, like chopped nuts or small candies. An apple cider bar is a great idea too. Have hot apple cider available with tasty mix-ins for guests to add like whipped cream, cinnamon sticks, apple slices, and vanilla.   

Chill-Fighters 
The apple cider bar will help to keep your guests warm when the weather gets a bit chilly. Another way to offer everyone at your wedding some comfort form the cold is to have baskets of blankets, throws, or shawls available during the reception. For the bride, bring along a cute denim jacket or plaid shirt to put on over you wedding dress. This look makes for some extremely adorable fall wedding photos.


Those are just a few of the great things we've seen done at past celebrations at our scenic wedding venue in Tennessee. We are anxiously looking forward to seeing what this year's fall brides and grooms will bring to Country Jewell. 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Bigger Isn't Always Better! - The Benefits of Hosting a Small Wedding

Hosting a wedding doesn't mean that you have to invite every person you've ever crossed paths with, plus family members you've never even met. Sometimes a smaller ceremony and reception with your nearest and dearest is the best idea for a couple. Our small rustic wedding venue near Knoxville has hosted many celebrations over the years, and we can vouch for the fact that even though the guest lists may have been on the smaller side, the love and excitement surrounding the weddings were huge!


There are lots of benefits to hosting a smaller wedding of 100 of fewer guests at Country Jewell. If these sound great to you, we may just be the perfect wedding venue in Tennessee for you!

It can be less expensive.
Some of your budget may not depend on the size of your guest list, like the bridal gown you choose, but a lot of your budget is affected by the number of people you invite. For example, food, drinks, linen rentals, invitations and postage, favors, and other similar items will cost a lot more if you have more guests to buy for. The smaller the guest list, the easier it will be to cut back in multiple areas of your budget. 

You can get extravagant!
We realize that this sounds like the opposite of what we stated in our last point, but not really. You don't have to spend more money to be extravagant, but if your guest list is on the smaller side, you can put more money toward important items instead of dividing the same amount among multiple guests. This could mean more food or bigger favors for example, or ordering the fancier invitations because you are only sending out 50 instead of 200.  

It's more personal.
Everyone will want to spend some one-on-one time with the bride and groom. Having a large amount of guests can give you the feeling that you are being pulled in too many directions at once without enough time to spend with each guest. The fewer the guests, the easier it will be to truly interact with everyone in attendance. You can also make the experience extra special for each of them by personalizing favors for each person. Since you don't have to make as many, it's a lot easier to accomplish this task. 


Fewer decorations are needed.
Less guests means fewer reception tables to decorate. You can also cut back on other wedding accessories like programs, sparklers, favors, and more. Of course, while you may have less need for decorations, this is one of those areas where you can point any leftover budget and practice that extravagance we mentioned earlier!  

You can relax. 
Between the excitement and anticipation you'll be feeling on the morning  of your wedding, it may be difficult to relax completely. If you know that once everything gets started you'll be surrounded by your closest family and friends, that can be a comforting feeling. Rather than seeming like you are putting on a show for a giant audience, it's an intimate gathering of all of the people you love.


Country Jewell offers a warm sense of Smoky Mountain tradition and enchantment for the backdrop to your wedding day. It's a beautiful, scenic venue for ceremonies and receptions with up to 100 guests. If the idea of planning a small wedding sounds perfect for you, give us a call so that you can come out and tour the best wedding venue near Knoxville. You're going to love it as much as we do! 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Great Wedding Gift Ideas For Your Future Spouse

There are a lot of people that you will want to thank for helping you plan and execute your wedding at our rustic wedding venue near Knoxville, like parents, bridesmaids, and groomsmen, for example. There is one very special person in particular that you will want to spend a little extra time figuring out the perfect gift for... your soon-to-be spouse! 


It should be sentimental, personal, and above all, reflect your personality and love for each other. Country Jewell has come up with a few ideas that might work for you. 

A Hand-Written Letter
In this day and age, putting pen to paper and writing a letter is a rare thing. It adds a personal touch that a text, email, or even a card simply cannot duplicate. Take a little time to write a special love note to your future spouse. Tell them all about why and how you fell in love with them, and share your hopes and dreams for your life together. If you enjoy the letter-writing, you might want to go the extra mile and write a few more letters to be saved and opened at important moments in your life; your first fight, when you buy your first home, the birth of your first child, etc...    

Jewelry
Jewelry is always a good gift that can last a lifetime. It's especially nice if it can be personalized or engraved with the wedding date, your names, and possibly a sweet saying. For the bride, she may already have her wedding day jewelry picked out, but you can find a special piece to be worn on future occasions, and maybe even passed down to your children one day. Pick something out containing her favorite stone, her birthstone, or the gem designated for the month you are getting married in. For the groom, a nice watch is something he can wear on a daily basis. Cufflinks are a good addition to a man's wardrobe too, especially if he will be wearing a suit on the wedding day that requires them.   

Surprise Deliveries
Instead of one big present, consider sending lots of little ones leading up to the ceremony. Start the day with cute little gestures, like a breakfast delivery of muffins and coffee, followed later by a beautiful plant for your new home (lasts much longer than a flower delivery,) a funny pair of socks to fend off "cold feet, then maybe later send a bottle of champagne and fancy glasses for them to share with their attendants. Think of little things that will brighten their day and put a smile on their face. Send occasional texts with sweet messages, or you could even make a video message for them to watch. End the string of surprises by having the maid of honor or best man deliver the final gift shortly before the walk down the aisle. 

Special Photos
Put together a scrapbook of all of the photos you've taken since you began dating, chronicling your relationship so far. You can even leave a page or two at the end for adding wedding photos. Another idea is to pick your favorite picture of the two of you and commission a local artist to turn it into a painting. Some women choose to have intimate boudoir photos taken for the groom's eyes only. Fellas, your bride might appreciate photos of you like that too.  

Future Dates
Your wedding is a promise to love, honor, and cherish each other for the rest of your lives. Give a wedding gift that symbolizes your promise of a wonderful future together by planning special outings for the coming year. Find one fun thing to do together at least once a month for the first year of your marriage, like concert tickets, sporting events, dinner reservations at a fancy restaurant, and other things that you enjoy doing as a couple. Pack these all together, and you could even include a calendar with all of the dates already penciled in. 


The gift that you give to your spouse on your wedding day at our scenic wedding venue near Knoxville doesn't have to be big and expensive. The important thing to keep in mind is that it has a special meaning to the two of you and is something that your future spouse will cherish. We hope that the ideas above help to get your creative juices flowing so that you can come up with the perfect idea for that very special person you love. If you see something that you would adore receiving yourself, by all means, please share our Country Jewell blog with our soon-to-be spouse!  


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wedding Party Duties - Who Does What?

When you are planning a wedding in Tennessee, the majority of tasks will be handled by the bride and groom. You don't have to do it all alone, though. The friends and family members that you ask to be in your wedding party make up a support team that can take care of many things for you. 



Country Jewell has compiled a list of traditional duties that each member of your wedding party is expected to handle. As with all of our wedding planning advice, this is simply a guideline of what is often done. Feel free to adjust it to meet your particular needs and the talents and personalities of the people in your wedding party. 

The Happy Couple
Technically, you are the wedding couple rather than members of the wedding party, but you should see yourselves as the captains of "Team Wedding." You will be asking people to help you with certain tasks, but all final decisions are yours. Your "job" is to convey your wedding wishes in a way so that the ones assisting you know what is expected of them. Oh, and one more "job" for the happy couple: REMEMBER TO HAVE FUN! 

Maid/Matron of Honor
This lovely lady is the bride's "2nd-in-command" over team wedding. (After the groom, of course!) She will be the one that you can call with questions, ideas, frustrations, and everything else. This is probably one of the people that knows you best, so she should be able to convey your wishes to others when you can't. For that reason, the maid of honor is the head bridesmaid, keeping the rest of the ladies in your wedding party on the same page. 

Before the wedding, she will make sure that plans are made for pre-wedding events, like the bridal shower and bachelorette party. On the wedding day, her job is to make sure that you have everything that you need, get you where you are going on time, hold your bouquet during the ceremony, and make sure your train is straightened and beautiful after you come down the aisle. This is also one of the people that will sign your marriage license as a witness. She may be asked to make a toast at the reception, and possibly hold on to the groom's ring until you place it on his finger. 



Bridesmaids
If your maid of honor cannot get to a task, one of these women can step up and handle it. They will all assist in the planning and executing of the bridal shower and bachelorette party, usually sharing the costs of throwing them. At the reception, they can take on a hostess role and offer answers and assistance to guests. Once the party gets started, these ladies can help to keep the crowd entertained and having fun all night long. 

Best Man
This fella is the groom's "go-to-guy." Just as your maid of honor is your backup, this man is the groom's. He can help your future husband with any wedding planning tasks he takes on. He is the one to make sure all of the groomsmen know what is expected of them, and he can help to make sure they are all correctly fitted for their suits or tuxedos. The best man is usually in charge of planning the bachelor party too.  

On wedding day, he needs to make sure that the groom gets to the church on time, and often is asked to hold the bride's ring until the ceremony, as well as the officiant's fee if it has not been collected before the wedding. He is the other witness to sign your marriage license, and is usually asked to give a toast at the reception. If the men's clothing is rented and needs to be returned, the best man is someone that can make sure that gets taken care of. 



Groomsmen
These men make up the groom's team of helpers, led by the best man. They will assist with planning and executing the bachelor party, and they usually share the costs of throwing it. At the reception, they can help the bridesmaids keep the wedding guests entertained and having a great time. They can be asked to help usher guests to their seats before the ceremony and act as greeters as people arrive.   

Ushers
Depending on the size and formality of your wedding, some couples choose not to have ushers. If you do, their job is to show up before the other guests so that they are able to help everyone find their seats. They can be in charge of greeting guests and answering any questions that may arise, such as the location of restrooms or where guests should go for the reception. Once the ceremony is over, the ushers will release the guests in an orderly fashion. 

Ring Bearer & Flower Girl
Children usually fill these roles, so there isn't much more expected of them than to make it down the aisle and look adorable. They should attend the wedding rehearsal so that they can get familiar with the other members of the wedding party, and also to practice and get comfortable with their walk down the aisle on wedding day. 


You will want to make sure that each of the members of your wedding party know what will be expected of them before they agree to be in your wedding. Most friends are happy to do the things listed above, plus more. When you choose to get married at our rustic wedding venue near Knoxville, we're happy to help you with the venue preparations and offer advice when it is needed. We see a lot of successful weddings here at Country Jewell, and we can't wait to help you pull off the ceremony and reception of your dreams.  


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Thursday, August 24, 2017

Wedding Day Jobs To Give To Family Members

Following up our blog from last week, Wedding Planning Jobs To Give To Family Members," which listed a few ideas on ways to let family members help before the big day, this blog has jobs that they can assist with on the actual wedding day. Having extra hands around to tackle different tasks at your rustic wedding near Knoxville will allow you to spend less time working and worrying and more time enjoying this special moment in your life.   


Transportation
Making sure that out-of-town guests have a ride from the airport or from their hotel to the wedding venue is a nice gesture. They won't have to spend money to find a ride, plus having a family member pick them up is a great personal touch. This is also a good service to offer for elderly guests that no longer drive. 

Ceremony Readings or Music
There are many lovely readings that can be used during your wedding ceremony, and this is the perfect place to let someone in your family that wants to be included in the celebration as more than just a guest have a job. If you have a relative that is musically talented, let them perform a song either before the ceremony begins or during it.  

Guest Book 
Most guests know what to do when they see a guest book at a wedding, but having a guest book attendant helps to make sure that everyone knows where it is at and that you don't miss getting any guests to sign in. Lots of couples choose to use a unique, alternative guest book, like a large poster or home decor item, instead of an actual book with pages to write in. In this case, it's wise to have someone standing by that can let everyone know where and how to sign in. 


Gathering Family for Photos
This may sound like an easy task, but getting all of the family members to show up when expected to get the family photos taken, and still stick to your wedding day timeline, can be hard to do. If you'll be taking these pictures before the ceremony, have a family member in charge of making sure everyone is in the right place at the right time. If the photos are being taken between the ceremony and reception, you'll need one person making sure that the relatives needed for the photos stick around and don't wander off to the reception area. Your photographer will be thrilled that a person that actually knows "who is who" is in charge of this task, plus it will help you to keep the wedding day schedule flowing on time. 

Cake Cutting
This is a job that is very often overlooked, and while it's not terribly glamorous, it is a very necessary spot to fill. Once the bride and groom cut the wedding cake, it cannot be served to guests until someone steps up to cut and plate the remaining pieces. Some caterers or bakers will take care of this, but don't assume that they will, always ask. Also, be aware that some will charge extra for this service, so you might as well get it done for free and let one of your helpful relatives have this job. 

Gathering Items After the Reception

Once the reception is over after a long day of celebrating, you will be exhausted, both mentally and physically. Designating a family member to be in charge of gathering all of the decorations, wedding gifts, and anything else that needs to go home with you means that the two of you don't have to worry about it, but it all still gets to where it needs to go. 


Planning ahead and filling the positions above before the actual wedding day will take a load off of your mind, plus these positions are wonderful ways to include family members in your special day that want to be helpful. The more help that you have at your scenic outdoor wedding near Knoxville, the easier it will be to get everything done that you've dreamed of happening on your wedding day. 

If you need more suggestions for ideas on how to throw an amazing wedding, the staff here at Country Jewell has a lot of experience in that area, and we're always happy to share that experience with our wonderful couples. For this one very important day, consider us a part of your extended family! 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Wedding Planning Jobs To Give To Family Members

With so many things happening on your wedding day, as well as the days leading up to your rustic wedding near Knoxville, there are lots of different ways to include family members that want to help. Between planning your Country Jewell wedding and the many tasks to take care of on the actual day, you should have no problem finding something for everyone to do. 


This week we'll cover some ideas for tasks to dole out during the planning stages, and next week we'll discuss jobs that family member's can handle on the wedding day. Even if you want to take care of the majority of the wedding planning yourself, you can still find small tasks for family members that want to help out. Sometimes giving an overly-helpful person a specific job to take care of will keep them from constantly pushing their ideas on you, while allowing them to feel useful. It also takes some of the more menial tasks off of your plate, freeing up your time to work on the big stuff. 

Stuff Invitations
After you've picked out your wedding invitations, decided on the wording, and placed the order, you still have to put all the pieces into the envelopes and address them. This is a wonderful task to put a group of family members on. They can set up an assembly line and get it all taken care of in a much more timely manner than you doing it all by yourself. 

Gather Addresses
Once you have your guest list finalized, you need to gather current mailing addresses for everyone on that list. This is a perfect thing to delegate to a family member. 

Craft Favors & Decor
If you have a lot of DIY projects planned for your wedding, don't you dare try to do it all by yourself! Even with the best time management, those things always seem to eat up more time than you would expect. Let your crafty family members get to work on these with you. They will love seeing their handiwork on the wedding day.  

Help Plan a Bridal Shower
For those family members that are trying to influence the wedding planning decisions that you are making, let them plan a different party to take their mind off of your wedding decisions. They can host a family bridal shower and party-plan to their heart's content. 

Gather Family Photos
Featuring family wedding photos at your ceremony or reception is a wonderful way to pay tribute to all of the love that both sides of your families have shared up until this day. Finding all of those photos can be time consuming though. Another family member will be able to take care of this for you while you work on other tasks.  


Even the smallest task can make your family members feel like they are an important part of your special day at our scenic wedding venue near Knoxville. They get to feel like a part of "Team Wedding," and you get to take a few planning tasks off of your plate so that you can focus on the bigger stuff. 

Next week, we'll conclude our Family Happiness Month-themed blogs with jobs that you can give family members on the actual wedding day. Country Jewell has some wonderful ideas so that both the bride's and the groom's families can be included on your special day. 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Sweet Ways To Welcome New Family Members At Your Wedding

We started our family-themed blogs for August in honor of Family Fun Month last week with 7 Ideas For Hosting A Fun Family Reunion. This week, we are turning our focus back to weddings at Country Jewell with ideas on how to welcome the family members you are gaining due to your new marriage. Whether it be in-laws, children from previous marriages, or a bunch of distant cousins, everyone will feel like one big family on your special day. 


In-Laws
When you get married, you not only gain a spouse, but also new parents, grandparents, and siblings. There are a few things that you can do before and during your wedding to show them that you are excited to add their family to yours.  

  • Gifts - Find a special memento that says something like, "Thank you for raising the wonderful man/woman that I fell in love with!" Let them know you appreciate not only the person they raised, but them too. 
  • Toasts - The same thing can be said in a toast directed at your new in-laws. Take a moment during the reception to publicly tell them you are thrilled to be a part of their family.
  • Planning - You can make your future spouse's family feel like a part of the wedding by letting them assist you with some of the planning details. Even the smallest assistance or using one of their suggestions can make them feel like a part of "team wedding." 
  • Unity Ceremony - There are unity ceremonies that incorporate both sides of the family instead of just the bride and groom. One example is the wine ceremony. Each set of parents brings up a carafe of wine, one white and one red. These are blended together by being poured into a single glass that the bride and groom drink from. This symbolizes the blending of the two families.  

Children
If one or both of you already has children from before the marriage, you will want to let them know that they are an important part of this union too. We've got a few ideas on how to make them feel like a special part of your wedding day. 

  • Announcements - Let the kid(s) make the wedding announcement by featuring them on the Save-The-Date holding a sign saying something like, "My mom is getting married!
  • Processional - They can walk as a part of the processional and stand up front as bridesmaids or groomsmen. You could also let them walk mom or dad down the aisle. This especially works well if the children are already adults.  
  • Vows - If the kids involved are not adults yet, it can be important to let them know that your new spouse promises to be there for all of you. Special vows specifically written to them can assure them that they are a big part of this new, blended family.  
  • Keepsakes - Newly married couples exchange rings, so a personalized keepsake, like a ring, necklace, or watch for children involved is a nice way to physically symbolize what vows state in words. 
  • Dance - After your first dance as husband and wife, invite the kids onto the dance floor and have a fun family dance. 
  • Unity Ceremony - Sand ceremonies are perfect for couples that are bringing children into the mix. Everyone involved can have their own color of sand so that their portion of the vase or frame is clearly visible. 

One & All
What about all of the extended family that you'll be gaining, as well as the new friends that your spouse is bringing with them? These ideas allow everyone to feel like a special part of your big day.

  • Seating - This is where that now popular sign "Pick a seat, not a side" comes into play. Gone are the days of separating the bride's friends and family from the groom's at the ceremony. Instead, remind everyone that you are all in this together and all are welcome.  
  • Traditions - Incorporating family traditions or customs into the celebration will honor that side of the family, plus introduce the other side to those things that are now a part of your life too. It can be done with decorations, music, or possibly the food being served. 
  • Photos - Set up an area to showcase your guests' wedding photos, both friends and family. They don't even have to be wedding photos. Instead, show off pictures from happy times that you have spent with the people you have invited to your wedding. 
Country Jewell, weddings, Knoxville, Heiskell TN

The wedding day is all about the bride and groom saying "I do" and pledging their lives to one another. There are a lot of people that helped you get to this point, and giving them a little bit of special attention can be a wonderful gesture. These are just a few ideas of things you can plan to do when you get married at our scenic wedding venue near Knoxville. There is a comfortable, family feel to Country Jewell which will make you and your guests feel welcome and at home while you are here. 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

7 Ideas For Hosting A Fun Family Reunion

August is Family Fun Month, so our next few blogs will focus on celebrations including family. If you'll be hosting a family reunion near Knoxville in the near future, Country Jewell has the perfect place to host it, and today's blog has a few great ideas on how to keep everyone entertained while they are there. 


Map It Out
If your family has spread out over the years and all live in different areas of the state, the country, or even the world, it can be fun to see exactly where everyone is coming from. Have a large map at the reunion entrance so that everyone can mark where they now live on it for all to see. This can be set up along with a name tag table, because if your family members don't get to see each other often, wearing name tags is an easy way to avoid the embarrassing question of "Who are you?" 

Play Games
Ice-breaker games are great for getting the party going, especially if your group doesn't get together often. These will help everyone get comfortable and be more relaxed with each other. For competitive groups, plan a few relay races and host a family olympics. The games don't have to be overly organized. Your family may prefer to have a few board games and lawn games set out to play at their leisure throughout the day. 

Family Favorites
If there is an activity that always happens when your family gets together or a similar interest that you each seem to share, a family reunion is the perfect time to showcase that. Musical families can bring instruments along and "jam" together, and possibly even teach the younger kids some old classics. If you prefer something crafty, maybe everyone could work on their own quilt square and then spend some time sewing it together. 

Many families have recipes that have been handed down from generation to generation. These definitely should be on the menu for the reunion dinner. You can also gather them into cookbooks to share with everyone, and increase the contents be asking each person to bring a new favorite recipe to add to the list. 


Tell Stories
When different generations come together, there is always something new to learn from each of them. Let the elders tell a few stories from their day, then have the younger family members chime in with a similar story from their modern-day lives. You could even turn the storytelling into a game and let everyone try to guess which family member the story being told is about.

Start a Time Capsule
Family reunions should be a regular occurrence. If not yearly, then maybe every 3-5 years. You can encourage this by having everyone bring something special with them to add to a time capsule. Then, make plans to open it back up at the next reunion and see how much everyone's tastes have changed. Don't forget to throw a group photo in their before sealing it up.   

Divide & Conquer
A multi-generational celebration means there are a lot of different age levels to keep entertained. Set up different areas of our rustic event venue near Knoxville to host age-appropriate activities. Young children need an area to run around and let off that youthful energy. Craft tables are nice too, and you can plan crafts for different ages. Teenagers may enjoy an area with a gaming system set up to challenge each other. Grown-ups may prefer a quieter area where they can talk and catch up with one another. Just plan to end the celebration by bringing all ages together for one last activity.  


Take LOTS of Photos
This is a lot easier to do nowadays since nearly everyone has a camera on their cell phone, and most people are never far from that phone. Technology makes it very easy to share these photos with each other too. Set up a photobooth-type area with props where everyone can get a little goofy for pics. Take lots of candid shots too, because it may be a while before you get all these people together again, but great photos will remind you how much fun you had and that you should do it again soon! And of course, don't forget to make the time for one big group picture while everyone is there.  

While you're at it, pull out photos from past reunions and display them at this celebration. After all, a big part of reunions is the chance to take a walk down memory lane together. Here's another thing that you can turn into a game. See if everyone can guess who is who in the old photos. 


Host a Country Jewell Family Reunion
Our scenic event venue near Knoxville is an excellent place to host your next family reunion. There is plenty of room, both indoors and out, for up to 100 guests to spread out and have some fun. You can make use of the beautifully landscaped outdoor areas, and the event barn has two levels, plus the following items for your group to use: 

  • 20 folding tables
  • 100 folding chairs
  • A warming/serving kitchen with:
    • a refrigerator
    • oven
    • microwave 

Country Jewell in Heiskell is available for all of your special celebrations. Our event venue can be rented for parties in 4-hour increments Monday-Thursday, and in 4 or 6-hour blocks Friday-Sunday and on holidays. Give us a call at 865-494-0552 to see if your desired date is available, then set up a time to stop by and see the place for yourself. It's the perfect spot for a happy and memorable family reunion!  


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

4 Plate-Free Wedding Appetizer Ideas.

Food is a very important part of a reception at our scenic wedding and event venue near Knoxville. If you will be hosting an all-day celebration, you may need more than just the main meal. Appetizers are a great way to keep guests happy after the ceremony until dinner is served, and some couples even choose to serve a few snacks before their "I do's" at Country Jewell. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, but it should taste great. 



During a cocktail hour or before the ceremony, your guests may not be in their seats at the reception tables yet. It can be awkward to socialize with a drink and a plate full of food in hand, and very difficult to participate in any lawn games you have set out to entertain everyone. Here are a few ideas for simple treats that don't require guests to carry a plate around with them. 

Grab & Go
Rather than expecting your guests to balance a plate of food, place small appetizers in easy to carry containers. A plastic cup that is flat on the bottom and can easily be set down if necessary can hold dip in the bottom and fruits, vegetables, cheeses, or crackers on top. You can even fill the bottoms of these cups with cocktail sauce for shrimp or with ketchup for a cup full of french fries. 

Cute paper bags of popcorn, chips, or some other type of crunchy snack is small and easy to carry. You can even opt for an edible container. Place fresh fruit in a chocolate-dipped ice cream cone for a fun treat.   

One-Bite Wonders
Another option is to have the food come to your guests by having servers carry passed hors d'oevures on trays. These should be small food that can be popped into your mouth in 1 or 2 bites. They only require that all guests have a napkin rather than a whole plate. Crackers topped with dips, cheeses, and other items work well for this. Bruschetta is also a wonderful option, or sandwiches cut into tiny, cute shapes. 

On a Stick
Toothpicks are excellent for serving bite-size foods, or you can opt for skewers and serve an entire row of yummy bites at once. Just about any type of food can be served on a stick: vegetables, fruits, meats, cheeses, and more! We've even seen slices of watermelon on a popsicle stick, making it easier and less messy to enjoy. 

Edible Centerpieces 
Once your guests are allowed to go to their seats at the reception table, you can have colorful centerpieces that also double as appetizers. An edible arrangement is fun and unique, and everyone can pick pieces off of it. One way to do it is with skewered food that resembles a floral arrangement, or you could use beautiful bowls and platters at different heights to hold the appetizers. This idea is also great for serving dessert. 



Deciding how to serve food to your guests is only one of many things to consider when you are planning a rustic wedding near Knoxville. As we mentioned earlier, the most important thing is that it tastes incredible. If you can make it unique and easy for guests, even better. Country Jewell is here to help if you have any questions about any part of the wedding planning process. All you have to do is ask, and we're thrilled to offer our expertise to make your wedding amazing! 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Follow us on LinkedIn
Follow us on Google+  

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

4 Reasons To Throw A Celebration At Country Jewell

Our scenic event venue near Knoxville is a wonderful place to gather your friends and family to celebrate... well... just about anything! There are many special occasions in every person's life, and sharing some of those with people you love and care about makes them even more significant. 

We offer lots of different event packages at Country Jewell to fit a variety of different needs. Here are just a few reasons why you should book a date with us in the near future. 


You're getting married!
Our rustic wedding venue near Knoxville is an excellent spot to say "I do!" The natural beauty surrounding Country Jewell will take your breath away, and the charming facilities offer multiple choices for a ceremony site. Our wedding chapel has an amazing stained glass window overlooking the altar, and the original barn board walls bring in a sense of history and enchantment.

The outdoor wedding gazebo is surrounded by lush landscapes and that amazing Smoky Mountain air. Outside you'll also find lovely beds of vibrantly colored flowers, ponds with meandering streams, bubbling waterfalls, neat stone paths, and white painted fences. All of these make amazing backdrops for some unbelievable wedding photos. 

The wedding barn is the site for an exciting reception with eating, drinking, and dancing. In addition to the actual wedding, this is a marvelous place to host an engagement party or come back to celebrate a wedding anniversary.  


It's a special occasion.
There are lots of those in the course of a year. Country Jewell is a wonderful spot to host a birthday or even get together for a holiday party. The charming and relaxed atmosphere makes everyone feel right at home and ready to celebrate something special.  

Country Jewell, Heiskell TN, event & wedding venue

It's time for a reunion.
If it has been a long time since you've gathered the extended family together in the same place, our beautiful event venue near Knoxville is the perfect place to do just that. It can be for a special occasion, such as a retirement or anniversary, or simply because it's been way too long. 

Everyone can enjoy dinner and activities inside the event barn, plus admire the beautiful atmosphere and gorgeous landscaping outside too. There is plenty of room for the entire clan to reconnect and make some new and lasting memories.   

Country Jewell, Heiskell TN, event & wedding venue

You need to get out of the office. 
Country Jewell is a great place to hold business meetings away from the office or schedule a relaxing retreat to team-build or thank your staff for a job well done. Bring everyone from work to our scenic meeting venue near Knoxville to enjoy the fresh air and gorgeous views to really get those creative juices flowing again. We offer breakfast or lunch meeting packages specifically for this. 

Country Jewell, Heiskell TN, event & wedding venue

When can we expect you?
Feel free to give us a call at 865-494-0552 to take a tour of Country Jewell before your next celebration. We would love to show you everything that our rustic event venue near Knoxville has to offer, and we believe once you've seen it, there's nowhere else you'd want to celebrate! 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Follow us on LinkedIn
Follow us on Google+