If a goal of marriage is to light up each other’s life in times of darkness — like, half a Vermont year — newlyweds can get started toward their bright future by lighting up their wedding night.
From creative LED lighting displays to set the mood to sulfur-tinged fireworks to send the newlyweds off with a bang, there are many ways to illuminate the big night.
Light up the room
As a wedding DJ, Richard Pitonyak, owner and operator for RPM Entertainment, knows plenty about bringing the right music to a wedding party. But he also knows that things have to look good.
“What does your wedding look and sound like?” he asks each client ahead of time.
“Uplighting” has been a standard tool for years — as the name suggests, lights throw all different types of hues upward, at the walls and ceiling.
Pitonyak said he uses uplighting to accentuate a venue’s architectural features, like making a post-and-beam structure pop. It can also be used to camouflage less eye-pleasing features. And he does it all based on the planner’s dreams.
The nice thing about lighting at weddings is you can take a venue that people get married in all the time and you can make it your own,” Pitonyak said. “Even if you were at a wedding last Saturday at the same place, you’d feel like you’re in an entirely different one this week.”
The lighting also applies to the dancing, which can be either classic — soft lighting for a first dance, for example — or groovy, with laser light shows and projections on the walls.
One time, Pitonyak had a request for a bonkers choreographed dance among the bridesmaids. To prepare for the syncing of music and light, Pitonyak actually rented out a high-school gym to practice his setup.
“So, on the wedding day, it went off without a hitch,” he said.
And don’t forget the small details. RPM Entertainment includes a cake spotlight in all its packages. He can also uplight the cake, and toss its shadow onto the wall for a cool effect.
Said Pitonyak, “The things that bakers are doing these days are so beautiful. Why not spotlight it?”
End with a bang
Vermont’s fireworks laws are weird — it’s legal to buy them, but illegal to have them or shoot them off without a permit. So, if you’re thinking about incorporating a sizzling finale to the wedding, you need to get all those permits in line, or hire a professional.
DJ Montague is the office manager at Montpelier-based Northstar Fireworks. She said the company has been handling wedding fireworks displays for years, and takes care of everything except the dream.
“I typically meet with the bride and try to get a feel for the impact they’re looking for,” Montague said. “Some just want a few quick blasts at the end of the night, and some want a whole 20-minute show.”
Northstar’s technicians are fully trained to keep things safe, gently urging tipsy guests to stay away from the mortars, and the company takes care of all the local permits — the ordnance ordinances, if you will. The company’s insurance also takes care of the venue.
“When they hire us to do a display, we take care of all the logistics,” Montague said.
Fireworks are strictly an outdoor pleasure, for obvious reasons. But you could always get a confetti cannon — or three — and fire them off inside. Erin Evarts, artistic director and founder of theater company Neat, with a Twist, said confetti cannons emit a noise like a bass drum and fire colorful confetti all over the place.
“It flies all over the whole room, which gives it a very cool, fun vibe, and a good alternative to, say, tossing flower petals,” Evarts said. “And it cleans up pretty easily with a broom.”
You can always purchase your own fireworks from Northstar, if you’re all permitted and confident in your abilities, and you’d save some money that way. But then you’d be missing all the fun.
Montague said a couple of employees head to China every year to demo the latest technology and find new products. With all the variety, ordering up a fireworks display isn’t much different than planning the wedding food. There are all kinds of shapes, sizes and colors, from happy faces and hearts to the “weeping willows” that linger like a curtain in the sky. They come in volume differences — pops and crackles, whistles and ka-booms.
“Because we’re customizing everything to their likes, it’s sort of a case-by-case basis,” Montague said. “Some people like the all-white displays, so we can do that, too.”