Hey everybody, welcome to the wedding ceremony podcast. We talk about anything and everything that has to do with wedding ceremonies. This is episode number 301, recorded on Tuesday, February the ninth 2021. My name is Clint Hufft. And with me is a gentleman that well, we lived up to the promise. There is an episode after 300. He is JP Reynolds.
JP Reynolds 0:25
Yes, Happy. Happy episode there to 300.
Yes, exactly. JP is accomplished author. His books are in the Amazon store and in the Kindle store in Amazon. He is a communications expert. thebusinessofconfidence.com is that website, his wedding website is JPRweddings.com. Mine is Reverendclint.com or ClintHufft.com for all of the things that I do.
I teased this in the last episode about one of our listeners, Zita Christian, who is in Manchester, Connecticut. And she's an officiant. And she wrote us this wonderful email on January 26. She said, every December Dave Jackson from the School of podcasting, asks his listeners for their favorite podcast. The compilation of answers is always his last episode of the year. And then they gave us a link to the episode. And I guess I'll put that, yeah, I guess I can do that. I put that in the notes, show notes. So she said, if you go to minute 44, or in that area, you'll hear my contribution. And so I did. And then I sent you the link and told you exactly where she came in. And she talked about the wedding ceremony podcast. And it was so sweet and moving and complimentary.
JP Reynolds 2:13
I listened to it. It's like, Oh, that's what we do.
Thanks for clearing that up.
JP Reynolds 2:26
yes. Now I know what I've been doing for three hundred episodes.
Oh my gosh. And what triggered her or at least motivated her was she was listening to Episode 299. And when I talked about Ron's lovely bunch of coconuts. So anyway, thank you, Zita. It meant the world to us. And I Oh my God. That was manna from heaven, a wonderful little pearl that came out of nowhere. So that's very cool.
I noticed that your website is JPRweddings.com. Mine is ReverendClint.com. But obviously, we're both interfaith and we marry people from all over and you don't have any kind of a title in front of yours.
We have a great friend in San Diego, Bethel Nathan, who is an officiant. And her website is Ceremonies by Bethel. And so what did you think about when you decided to create the name for your website? I mean, because now I'm beginning to think maybe I need to rebrand because maybe Reverend The title is too limiting. What do you think?
JP Reynolds 3:54
Wow. An interesting question.
My website has been JPR weddings I think almost from the very first incarnation of my website. And, it's now been so long since I chose that that name for the website. I must admit, it's a little vague boy, I did that. Um, I think in terms of my brand, it's the JP is Joseph Patrick. Named after my father. My mother hated both names. She wanted to name me Ronald. Thank God She didn't have her way. Ronald Reynolds, no. And from the day I was born, I was known as JP so I knew That JP would have to be in the name. And at the time, my business website was JPR communications. Oh, so I liked the idea of balancing that with JPR communications JPR weddings. I then had an email from somebody who claimed that their business was JPR communications, and they asked to change the name. And that's when I changed it to the business of confidence, which I liked much more than JPR communications actually. When I was a priest, Catholic priests oftentimes had the title of Father, which I actually was never comfortable with, because it's like, well, I'm not your father, and not your mother. I was a Reverend. When I left ministry, as a priest, I wanted to very much make sure that people knew that I was no longer functioning as a priest. And that while I was a Reverend, the expanse of my ceremonies went beyond religious ceremonies. And when I was a priest, I had always asked people to simply call me JP, so I never really stood on on a title. And that is a meandering explanation.
No, that's what I was looking for. I wanted to hear that. By the way, on a side note, every time your mother makes an appearance in our podcast, I just start laughing.
Okay, I'm gonna change the subject here for a second. There's a city in northern Nevada. It's called Reno. And the motto of Reno is “the biggest little city in the world”. I did a micro wedding this last Saturday. I was not in Reno, but oh, no, you'll see where I'm going.
JP Reynolds 7:37
Don’t mind me. Just keep talking.
No, it's okay. And I totally get that. All right. So I think I did the biggest micro wedding in the world. That's where I was going with this. Okay, I have no idea how Reno decided that that's what they were going to call themselves. But I'm going to explain this to you. And you will see why I think it was the biggest micro wedding in the world. Okay. Okay. There were only 10 people that were actually like, participants. Yeah, there was at least twice that many in terms of support staff. But there were 10 people, and that includes the bride and groom. So there was the bride and groom, there was her mom and dad, there was his mom, and I think an uncle and a brother. And then her sister, the sister’s six month old baby and the sister's husband. That's it, right? But they rented out this estate. And anybody who's been to Southern California and his meandered up towards Santa Barbara, there's an area called Montecito, which is just gorgeous. And so we had talked a few episodes ago about people that will do an Airbnb, but it'll be like a bigger home for like a day, for an event or whatever. So that's what I was expecting. I was expecting something like that. So I get to the property and there's a gate and there's this person there and so you have to make sure you are who you say you are and then there's this long driveway and then there's a place to park but, I immediately realized, okay, I'm in a different world right now. Really, it was the kind of house that you only see in movies and television. And it's kind of like okay, I don't know where that is, but it certainly isn't anywhere near where I live. And I almost expected people to start talking in British accents. And maybe there was a dragon just over the hill.
JP Reynolds 9:35
You know, I think Prince Harry lives in Montecito.
Oh, no kidding. Yeah. Oh, see, now the plot thickens. Because here's the deal. Whoever lives there. So there let me explain the the grounds. There was the main house which looked like a big house. Then there was a second house which apparently the in-laws lived in, and again, a big house. There was a conservatory which they had Because of the pandemic converted into a gym, so there was a bunch of exercise equipment in there. That's also where the bride did hair and makeup. And then there's a pool house. Then there's the garage, which looks like it could have fit six cars in there. You know how it had four doors. And then the driveway and everything was that kind of paving stone. And there was even a little creek where in order to get to the back house where I guess, so that's another house, which is where the service staff, I guess if they had live in people, you went over a little bridge in order to get to that area. That's where I ended up parking. And they had a pool, they had a full tennis court. You know, it was just that and then the grounds, had multi levels where if you're going to go to the next level, you have to walk up these stone steps and everything looked like it was built like a long time ago. And it was just gorgeous, magnificent. Amazing, huh.
They hired a band, a full band. And the leader of the band is this guy that's got a great voice. He wears like a white dinner jacket, everybody else is in black suits. And he plays the trumpet and sings. I had met him a couple years ago at some networking thing. And he's like, not just a band, he's like a legit guy that plays major events and clubs. And, you get the feeling that he's from another era. Yeah, and hipster kind of Michael Buble kind of a feeling. Plus he plays the trumpet. So he was gonna play the trumpet and the band was maybe like a five or six piece band for 10 people. And he was gonna play trumpet for the processional music. And I recognize him, walked up and said, Oh, my gosh, I can't believe that I get to actually work with you. Because, we hit it off a couple years ago at this thing. Alright, so 10 people, and not just a wedding band, but a full legit, this guy is a pro, a couple of levels above.
JP Reynolds 12:07
I just want to clarify this couple lived at this estate, or were they renting it?
They just rented it. Okay. And to make it even more staggering for me, you have to understand I'm filtering all of this. I'm telling you exactly what I was feeling. The event planner, I said this place is amazing. She said, they actually live here. The people that own it, we never saw them. But they only rent it out once a year for a wedding. And then twice a year for fundraisers. Oh, once a year for a wedding. And somehow this couple got it. Wow. And wow. Well, now I've brought up the event planner. Okay, so to answer your question, the couple lives down in Orange County. So for those of you not familiar with Southern California, that's about 100 miles between Santa Montecito and Newport Beach. So there was five event planners, there was the event planner and four assistanys for 10 people.
JP Reynolds 13:31
yeah. And I just kept thinking to myself, okay, I know that what I'm about to say, you can identify with completely because we have a list of things that we have thought in our heads that we can never say out loud. And when it comes to a wedding because I know there's a whole other world Oh, no, no, you're gonna like this. So when I really got the lay of the land and understood and I looked around to all the people and everything that was going on. Oh and the flowers. It was full flowers. In fact, there was a long path for the processional. That came from an upper terrace and down along this lawn that had one of those. You've seen him at resorts where they'll have like a fountain. That is a real long oval. Yeah, yeah. So they had one of those at this house. Anyway, and that's not the pool, because when I was walking back to my car, I walked by the pool. Yeah, this is just the fountain on the upper terrace or whatever they would call it outside the conservatory in front of the main house. Yeah, so she's gonna walk all along this long oval pond, fountain thingy. Hmm. And the florist took flowers, not roses, but some thing like on a stem maybe. I really don't know what they were anyway, they were white. And there was a bunch of them, let's say that clusters about four flowers wide. And on both sides of the pathway that the couple was gonna walk up to get to me. And the end, it looked like it was about 50 yards. That means they hired a florist, to do all of that, plus we were in front of an archway. And then, of course, there were flowers for where they were going to have dinner. And it was just amazing. And then I'll get to that in a second. So the phrase that went through my head that I really wanted to ask the father of the bride was, How much money do you actually have?
A legitimate question.
Yes. Now, I was told a while ago, this one particular client that I talked about the wedding and and that, you're just in a different world, and you walk up and it looks like a castle. And I was told by the assistant who contacted me, this guy's a billionaire. Okay, great. But in this particular wedding that I did just a few days ago, I had no idea. I don't have any idea what they did. You know what? Actually now that I think about, I did say to the event planner, do you have any idea what what the dad does? She said, one of the greatest phrases I've ever heard in my life. She said, I think he's in storage.
Yes. Oh, my gosh, I can't wait to tell my kids. I don't know what plans you have for your life. But from this point forward, you're going into storage. That's fabulous. It reminds me of the movie The Graduate. Yeah. The guy said plastics.
JP Reynolds 17:05
Yeah, yeah. Yeah.
okay. So all of that was there. Now It's time to talk to the people that set up the sound system. It's a full sound system. The microphone sounded great. It was one of those where it kind of was omnidirectional.
JP Reynolds 17:22
Oh, okay. So now, because it's only eight people. Right? And it's outdoors, but it's a sheltered outdoors. So you wanted a microphone, even given that limited number of people?
Oh, the one thing I didn't say to set this whole thing up was the event planner contacted me two weeks ago. And so actually, about 10 days ago, 10 days before the wedding. They were gonna get married at some resort down closer to where they live. But obviously, that was out of the question. And so they decided to do this thing. And then, the event planner, very casually said, I think they're gonna have their big wedding in Italy next year. And I'm thinking sure they are. They are, of course they are.
And so when I showed up, everything was already there. I didn't have a conversation with anybody about the setup, or the microphone, or any of that kind of stuff. Other than when I got there. They said, What do you want to work with? And it's interesting how everybody wants to default to a lapel mic. Right. And that is not my favorite. Right? Yeah. Anyway, so I said, well, they wrote personal vows. And so it'd be kind of easy if I just had a mic that I could turn towards them. And so that's what we did. But here's the thing: as a surprise to the bride and groom. You know, sometimes people will hire doves to fly at the end of the ceremony? Yeah, yeah. And then the timing of that, especially if it's a surprise to the bride and groom. The timing of that is you either do it at the kiss, or you do it when at the very end when you present them, right. And I did one time over the years, I thought, let's try the kiss. And that was a mistake, because you want the couple to be completely focused on each other. And instead, there's birds flying around, which is kind of shocking, if you don't expect it. Right. And so most of the time, I'll suggest, okay, do it at the end. Let them kiss and don't do it Then.
JP Reynolds 19:37
You have to understand, I'm from New York. Yeah. And we have a lot of pigeons. So people like to have romantic trysts in Central Park and pigeons are flying around. Yeah.
One day we'll talk about the pigeons in New York. Yeah. Okay. So they had cannons with rose petals in them. That was going to be their pigeon release, it was going to be the explosion of flower petals. At the particular moment near the end of the ceremony,
JP Reynolds 20:10
Were these hand held like, quote hand cannons?
No, they were not. And that ended up being a very important thing. No, they were tubes, metal tubes on brackets on the ground, behind. I don't know what they were behind, but the bride and groom couldn't see them as they were walking up. And then once the ceremony begins, they're not looking at anything. So they wouldn't have seen it. And it was off to the side a little bit. It was like on the outside of the Oh, and the guests Were sitting in benches, not chairs. So it's like pews. And there was only two of them in each row. So yeah, anyway, and so that was out there. So the question before the ceremony begins, number one, it's a surprise to the bride and groom. They don't know anything about the flower cannons. I said, Great. And then a guy comes walking up. And the event planner says, and this is so and so who's with the sound people and they also brought the flower cannons. Great. So I explained who I am. And I said, What's the plan? I always like to let people go first. I don't want to start imposing my will on anybody if they've already figured it out. So what's the plan? Well, actually, what do you think? Which was very nice. I said not the kiss, don't do it at the kiss. Because if they don't know what's coming, it'll freak them out. Because it's a cannon. Right? And so just wait, don’t do it with kiss. Wait until they're facing everybody. And I say here they are Mr. Mrs. Okay, and I said that about three or four times, not the kiss. Just for clarification, not to be a jerk, just for clarification. So not at the kiss. And because it was obvious to me that this guy was not one of those dove people that have been to 5 billion weddings. This was an audio visual guy. And so I was really kind of explaining the lay of the land. Right? Okay. We get to the end of the ceremony. And I say By the power vested in me Baba, bah, I pronounce you united in marriage. Flower cannon know before the kiss, they hadn't kissed and boom. And I have that surreal moment of, oh my gosh, I gotta finish this thing. So then while the flowers are kind of settling down in the air, I said, Would you like to kiss? And then I got out of the shot. So they kiss. And you know what? That might have been a brilliant photo, because they kissed while the rose petals were falling down to the ground. I don't know. I'm really curious to see that. And then they turn and they started walking away and I did the final here they are Mr. And Mrs. While they're walking away. I had told the musicians your cue is when the cannons go off, your cue to start the music. The recessional is when the cannons go off. So they did what I told them. Right. But everything was too soon. And so I don't even know if anybody heard me say what their names, the Mr. and Mrs. Right?
I don't really don't care about stuff like that. I really honestly don't. Every now and then a DJ or musician will screw up the queue or whatever, fine.
Then the guy comes over to me. And I said who's gonna push the button on the cannons? He said there is no button. I said how do you make them go off? He says I plug it in. Because he said when I send electricity to the cannons they will explode. He said electricity. What does that mean? I'm just gonna plug it in. Okay, well, then, again, here's the cue. I even said, they're gonna turn they're going to face everybody. I'm going to say I present to you for the first time Mr. And Mrs. And when I get to Mrs. Plug it in. Because then when I say their last name, the timing will be perfect. And off the cannon will go. Well, when I said united in marriage, he freaked out, because it was his first rodeo. And then I walked over to him and he said, was that too soon? I said yeah, but I don't care. Look at them. They're really happy. All right, because that's the way I think that kind of thing should be handled. If he already acknowledged that he screwed up the que. I'm not gonna hammer him.
JP Reynolds 24:36
Yeah, listen, at the end of the ceremony. There's so much joy and there's so much excitement. Nobody is paying attention to the steps. It's a celebration of joy and euphoria.
When I emcee things, sometimes participants will get kind of freaked out over something that was or was not supposed to happen. And, I just say, listen, the audience has no idea what's supposed to happen. They're just gonna sit down and entertain us. And we just kind of roll out whatever it is right?
JP Reynolds 25:18
All of it is arbitrary. You and this guy figured it out right before the ceremony, right? You could have picked any sequence of events, right?
And the guests, all eight of them would have no idea, right? There was a guy that I worked with when I was a DJ, and did a ton of bar and Bat Mitzvahs. And, we work as a team. I had a ton of experience before I went into that world of social events and weddings and bar mitzvahs and things. I actually worked in the corporate world, and I was a event or an entertainment coordinator. And so I had all this experience. I joined this company that has a lot of DJs and MCs, and they do a ton of business. And I got paired with this guy, who was the number one guy in the mitzvah world. And I was curious as to why I was paired with him. Because I was brand new to this world, I had never done a Bar Mitzvah before. It turns out that they figured that I had enough maturity to deal with this guy, because he was a prima donna. So the reason I'm really kind to people when they screw up is because this guy was the opposite. If we're doing a thing, and there's like a sequence of things that he wants to do, if for some reason I don't hit the cue exactly on the word that is the cue. Literally, this happened more than once. He's on the microphone, and people are dancing, and he stops what he's doing to come over to me off the microphone, of course, and say, you just ruined the whole party. Oh, and I, because of my experience, I looked at him and said, Get back to work. What are you doing? Then it turns out there were other DJs that told me that he had done the exact same thing to them. You just ruined the whole party, because of something that was not exactly perfect. And I thought, you know what, because of the power that we have as officiants I'm never gonna do that to anybody ever. If something gets screwed up, I'm just gonna say well, okay, because I figure I'm not gonna hammer him. I just don't i don't have that mindset. Does that make sense?
JP Reynolds 27:35
Oh, yes perfectly. I totally agree with you. Yeah.
Okay, there's one more thing. We're almost at a time. Maybe I should have phase two. Yeah,
I think I'll do that. I’ll do part two. That's okay. Okay, go ahead. No, no, we're gonna do part two. So, Episode 300, the second episode after the next episode, after 300. Then we'll talk about part two of this wedding that I did, because there's more. Okay. Yeah, the biggest micro wedding in the world.
JP Reynolds 28:09
I have to say, when you introduced it that way, I thought, Oh, Clint’s exaggerating. But you actually we're not exaggerating. I would agree with you. It's like the biggest micro wedding ever.
Oh, my gosh, I have so much more to tell you. It was amazing. I remember getting in the car. And on my way home. I call my wife to say, I'm coming home. She was how was the wedding? I said there's so much I can't tell you right now. And I said I also will confess to you I cannot wait until Tuesday when I get to talk to JP Yeah. Yep. All right, everybody. That's the way this works for the wedding ceremony podcast. We tell stories that because we're still in the thick of it, JP and I, and we know that you are as well, we would love for you to tell us your stories. And thank you again to Zita and I saw that we have a new email from Ron in Australia who sent us the coconuts. And so if you would like to contact us, just go to our website weddingceremonypodcast.com and click on the “email us” button, and then it will come right to us. I check it every single day. And tell us a story or ask us a question or whatever you want to do. It's all good. That also is where you can listen to our episodes. They are all on that website. They're archived chronologically, so that means the most recent one is at the top. My suggestion is that you get to the Apple podcast or any of the apps that access that and that way you can subscribe. Look up wedding ceremony podcast, click on the subscribe button. And then every time we post a new episode, it'll automatically come into your world. And if you would like to leave us a review, That would be awesome, because that's how people discover new content. Want to remind you again that JP'S books are in the Amazon store and in the Kindle store in Amazon. For communications coaching thebusinessofconfidence.com. Wedding website is Jprweddings.com. Mine is ReverendClin.com, at least for today. I really am seriously thinking of changing that. And also ClintHufft.com, For all of the things that I do. Thank you again to the incredible musicians that play our theme music the dacapoplayers.com. That's it for this episode of the wedding ceremony podcast. This is Clint and on behalf of JP We will see you next time.