We love non-traditional couples. After all, we are excited to be the official DJ for Pride St. Charles! There is one tradition that does seem to be keeping its foothold, the bride taking the groom's last name. We've noticed that changing, so here are some alternatives to taking his last name! 


Probably the most popular alternative is to hyphenate the two names. It's simple and elegant and allows everyone to keep their family name.

Make a Mashup

Have some fun and take parts of your last names and mash them up to create an entirely new name!

Change Your Middle Name

If you really love your last name and want to keep it, you may consider making your given last name your middle name. That will help you stay connected to your past while celebrating your future.

Keep Your Name Professionally

If you are career minded and have earned your success with your current last name you can keep it for your profession. Professionals like relators and doctors do it all the time.

He Takes Her Last Name

Traditionally the female takes the male's last name. It's almost 2017 so it shouldn't be that radical for the male to take the female's name. LGBT couples can negotiate who will change their name, if at all.

Make Something Up

Why not go crazy and just make up a new name for both of you to take? You can even go all out and design a new family crest!

Do Nothing

Don't forget doing nothing at all is definitely an option. There is no law that says anyone has to change their name after getting married!

A common way couples try to save some money is to do the planning themselves. Planning a wedding is much more work than anyone could ever think. It is like having another part-time job on top of your regular one. We always recommend hiring a professional planner, but if you want to do it yourself here are some times it would be beneficial to take off work.

Marriage License Day

Getting your marriage license doesn't take all day, but take one anyways. Spend the time with your fiancé to do something romantic to celebrate getting this major task checked off the list!

Dress and Tux Shopping

Shopping for the dress and tux will take time, a lot of it. You will likely visit multiple stores and try on countless dresses and tuxes. Most couples shop during the weekend. If you take a weekday off to do the shopping you will have a much better experience.

Last Hurrah!

Even though most bachelor and bachelorette parties are held on the weekend you still may want to take the day before or after off. If you are traveling take the day before off to pack and get ready to leave. If you are staying local take the day after off to give you time to recover!

The Day Before

This may go without saying, but take off the day before your wedding. There will be last-minute details to attend to, like spending time with family that traveled in to town.

The Day After

Even if you aren't leaving for your honeymoon immediately consider taking the Monday after your wedding off. Take that time to unwrap the gifts, write Thank You cards, and just enjoy the free time.

Congratulations, you're a newlywed now! You are probably also exhausted after the big day. You were up early to get ready and partied into the night to celebrate; do you want to get up early for a flight to your honeymoon? Probably not! Here are some ideas to make your first day of marriage a great one!

Sleep In

Catch up on some well-deserved sleep and snuggle with your spouse in bed for awhile.

Lounge Around

Once you get out of bed just lounge around and relish the thought of having nothing to do but be together.

Open the Gifts

Take some time to open all the gifts and cards from your guests. Don't worry about those thank you cards just yet, they can wait until after the honeymoon.


Most weddings are on a Saturday so it's easy to find a good Sunday brunch. Coincidence? We think not!

Go to the Spa

Go to a couples spa and enjoy a few hours of pampering for the ultimate in relaxation.

Eat Cake

Why wait until your first anniversary to eat the leftover cake? It's much better the day after than frozen for a year.

Stalk Social Media

You asked all your guests to use a hashag on social media posts, didn't you? Now it's time to search that hashtag to see all the photos and posts!

Dine Out

Start your honeymoon early and go to your restaurant of choice for a tasty dinner.

Pop The Bubbly

Celebrate your new marriage with some champaign after dinner. Toast each other and the new life you are beginning!

Watch the Sunset

Find a romantic spot to watch the sun go down. Preferably while drinking that bubbly!

When you start planning your wedding you will find items and services you never knew you needed or wanted! Here are 15 expenses that can be easy to overlook.

Engagement Photos

Typically your engagement photos can be worked into a package with your wedding photographer. Bundling always saves a few dollars! The added bonus is you get to know your photographer that much better before the big day.

Engagement Ring Sizing

Some jewelry stores will do this at no charge when you buy your ring, some won't. If you are using a vintage ring you will need to pay to have it sized.

Asking Bridesmaids

Of course you can just ask them straight-forward if they would be a bridesmaid, but that's not much fun. Take them out for a fun night and ask them to be your bridesmaid then!

Invitation Stamps

These days we don't send much in the mail so the cost of stamps might not be on the top of your list. Don't forget to budget correctly. Some envelopes that are heavy will require extra stamps. The Post Office's website has a tool to help you figure out how many stamps you will need for each invitation. Don't forget the return envelope postage!

Dress Alterations

Unless you are very lucky and find a dress that fits you perfectly you will need alterations. This cost can vary, so make sure you ask your bridal shop about alterations.

Bridal Party Gifts

Plan these purchases early. If you wait until the last minute you may end up spending more than you'd like. Purchasing early also gives you time to have something personalized for each bridal party member.

Ceremony Music

Even if your ceremony is in a church you will likely need to pay an organist to play at your wedding. If you are having your ceremony outdoors or in a location not designed for ceremonies you may need to hire a company to provide sound so your vows and the officiant can heard. River City DJ can help you with this service.

Cake Cutting

Not all venues will cut the cake for you. Make sure you ask about this with your venue contact! If they will not cut the cake you need to check with your bakery for other options.


Wether you are taking your own car, hiring a limo, or carriage, you will need a way to get to the ceremony and reception locations. You may also need to provide some transportation for older guests.

Vendor Meals

Sometimes vendors are forgotten about when it comes to dinner. Remember, your photographer and videographer have been with you all day. Giving them the same meal as what you are serving your guests is very appreciated. The typical vendor meal is no comparison.

Non-RSVP Guests

No matter how well you plan, no matter how much you ask for a RSVP, some people will just show up. Your caterer will help you plan for this. On the plus side there is usually a few guests who won't show up. Typically it all works out just fine.

Sunset Wedding

Having a sunset wedding can allow for a dramatic change in the lighting for your venue! Talk about this with your wedding planner or whomever is providing the decorations. The lighting River City DJ provides can provide multiple different looks throughout the night. We can help you make your reception venue pop!


If the party is going hard and you don't want it to stop you can keep it going, at a cost. Check with your venue and entertainment about their overtime costs.

Dress Cleaning

It is important to have your dress cleaned after the big day! Having it preserved is a cost you want to budget for before you leave for your honeymoon.

Legal Documents

After you get your official copy of the marriage certificate you will need to update your passport, drivers license, credit cards, bank accounts, etc. Sometimes each of those accounts will require a separate copy of the marriage certificate; budget for extra copies.



    Josh has been a DJ in the St. Louis area for 22 years. In this blog he offers tips and ideas to help you plan your amazing event!
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