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TinkerBabe1010
01-30-2007, 11:31 AM
Hi all,

Our consultant suggested the Summerhouse/GF Beach for our rehearsal dinner/welcome dinner, which would include roughly 150 people. We're talking about doing a "Jimmy Buffet" style beach party cook out, with freshly grilled food, margaritas, and a key west guitarist. :goodvibes

I really liked her idea, and I'm getting excited about it. Because of the size of our group our only other option is really a ballroom, and I really don't want that, because I just want something more unique. princess:

Has anyone else held a get together here? I'd love to hear about any and all experiences with the Summerhouse/GF Beach. And if anyone has any pictures that would be wonderful.

I've never seen this area of the GF (that I can remember), so I'm having trouble getting an idea of what it would be like. :confused3 So any and all input would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks so much ladies, you're the best!! :grouphug:

Raspberry Bubbles
01-30-2007, 12:01 PM
This is somewhere I've considered - it looks so unique, and one of the DISers has had a party there too - I am sure she will share her experience with you!

lurkyloo
01-30-2007, 12:08 PM
It was Janet2K, and she has lots of great pictures, too! Maybe you can do a search on her screen name.... :thumbsup2

Raspberry Bubbles
01-30-2007, 12:10 PM
She is a BRILLIANT source of information - so helpful! She'll probably spot your post soon!

karentan
01-30-2007, 12:56 PM
here's a link to janet2ks summerhouse party photos:
http://new.photos.yahoo.com/janettwokay/album/576460762326646108#page1

lurkyloo
01-30-2007, 02:19 PM
...and here's a link to another thread with a lot of her info on the Summerhouse

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1339049&page=2

:)

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 01:07 AM
Our consultant suggested the Summerhouse/GF Beach for our rehearsal dinner/welcome dinner... Has anyone else held a get together here?

As the others have so kindly mentioned, I hosted a private dinner party at the Summerhouse a few years ago. It is a lovely venue. I have also seen the venue set up for wedding receptions, birthday parties, etc. Disney can decorate it to suit any event.

My photo link has already been shared, but here's another album with other photos in it: click here (http://new.photos.yahoo.com/janettwokay/album/576460762326645502). (I hope that link works because I'm having a bear of a time getting my photo albums to load this evening. Arg! I hate Yahoo.)

I hope this helped.

Belle83007
01-31-2007, 01:07 AM
omg a beach party what an awesome idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i am actually going to inquire about that for my rehearsal :goodvibes thanks for the idea;)

allisonswonderland
01-31-2007, 11:41 AM
WE had our rehearsal dinner at the summerhouse as well in November and it was wonderful! I loved looking at the wedding pavilion and the kids could play on the beach, it was really wonderful. They opened the bar and everything really was great! We did a buffet and had a cash bar- my inlaws refused to pay for alcohol - well they did not want to even offer soda either but it was 100 for the cash bar option so that way people could get it if they wanted it. it worked well-

Raspberry Bubbles
01-31-2007, 12:27 PM
It sounds like a fantastic option to explore - there are so many choices! Being able to play on the beach is definately a "plus" in my book! :goodvibes

TinkerBabe1010
01-31-2007, 12:47 PM
OMG girls!!!! You all are so, so helpful!!! :grouphug:

Thank you Lurky and Karen for posting the links, that was so helpful!!! :upsidedow

Janet, your photos are beautiful!! It looks like it was a delightful evening. Did you enjoy the food? Were you able to see Wishes? I know you can't hear it from that location, but can you see it? I saw that you did the Desert Party elsewhere, but do you know if you can see the fireworks from that location? Do you think the location will fit 150 people? Also, when you had Mickey come over on the boat, do all the characters do that when you arrange for them to come, or was that something that you arranged specially? We are planning on having characters, but we are thinking of Chip and Dale because we are having Mickey and Minnie at the wedding. Thank you for sharing!! :hug:

Allison, thanks for sharing your experience! Did you enjoy the food? How many people did you have? Do you think 150 people will fit okay into that location? What was your menu! Thanks so much and glad your wedding was so wonderful!!! :wizard:

Belle, I know-- the beach party is an awesome idea!! I was so happy when my consultant mentioned it-- I hadn't even thought about it!! We'll have to share info back and forth!! :goodvibes

Raspberry, thanks for all your help and support!! You ladies are so wonderful!!! princess:

What would I do without all of you!!! :cheer2:

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 02:25 PM
i am actually going to inquire about that for my rehearsal

Do so. It is a lovely area for an outdoor event.

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 02:59 PM
Janet, your photos are beautiful!! It looks like it was a delightful evening…

I hired Disney to take photographs during my event. My photographer did a lovely job. All of the Disney photographers that I've used over the years have done a wonderful job. I've been pleased.

The photos in that second album were ones that I took. On the day of my event, three events actually took place at the Summerhouse at different times. There was a Boston Clambake kinda afternoon party (you can see some of the decorations for that event in a few of my photos). Then there was some sort of birthday party with lots of balloons (I didn't take photos). And in the evening was my party, which my Event Manager gave a BBQ / Beach Party kinda theme. The Sumerhouse is a popular venue for private events.

I wrote about the planning of my Summerhouse party in great detail in an old trip report: click here (http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=586647&pp=15). If you read it, it will answer most of your questions, including what menu was served at my event, as well as how Mickey Mouse came to arrive via float boat. (NOTE: My photo links were broken by Yahoo a few months ago when they changed how they handled their on-line photo-sharing website. I haven't had time yet to fix my photo links but here is the link to my main photo album: click here (http://new.photos.yahoo.com/janettwokay/albums/). You can find all of my photo albums there, including my Summerhouse albums.)

As to Mickey Mouse, I had to pay for both him and his mode of transportation -- float boat. I was told that it was the first time that he had arrived on the shores of the Grand Floridian via float boat, and Disney had to do a trial run just to make sure it was possible. The trial run happened a few days prior to my event and I mentioned it in my trip report. Please note that I do not know if a character can still arrive via float boat. Only Disney can tell you whether or not that is still possible.

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 03:04 PM
Being able to play on the beach is definately a "plus" in my book!

I agree. One of my all-time favorite photos of my daughter was taken on that beach during my event: click here (http://new.photos.yahoo.com/janettwokay/album/576460762326646108/photo/294928803349420855/77).

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 03:06 PM
WE had our rehearsal dinner at the summerhouse as well in November and it was wonderful!

I haven't been on the Dis much over the past 12 - 13 months, so I'm happy to hear you say that your event turned out well.

Janet2k
01-31-2007, 03:12 PM
Lurkyloo and Karentan, I haven’t been on the Dis much over the past year or so. It was nice of you to share my photo links. I sincerely appreciated that.

Raspberry Bubbles
01-31-2007, 04:44 PM
I agree. One of my all-time favorite photos of my daughter was taken on that beach during my event: click here (http://new.photos.yahoo.com/janettwokay/album/576460762326646108/photo/294928803349420855/77).

Awww.....adorable! It makes me wish my wedding was sooner! (Or that I could win the lottery and just move over to Florida!)

Raspberry Bubbles
01-31-2007, 04:46 PM
OMG girls!!!! You all are so, so helpful!!! :grouphug:

Raspberry, thanks for all your help and support!! You ladies are so wonderful!!! princess:

What would I do without all of you!!! :cheer2:

Thank you for your kind words - I receive so much help on this board that it's nice to be able to help someone else :) This is the friendliest board I've ever been on! :):grouphug:

Geneva
02-01-2007, 01:14 AM
Hi. I also will have a large group for our rehearsal and welcome party and I wanted to let you know that my Sales Associate said they accomodated a group of 160 recently at Ohana in case you needed an indoor option to consider. The GF beach party sounds and looks absolutely beautiful though!
All the best to all of you.
:goodvibes :grouphug:

sunsh1ne
02-01-2007, 07:18 AM
this sunds like something i would love to do also
do you know i they host bufet brunches out there also??
do you pay per head or just a st price?
do they always do the scavenger hunt i love that idea?

Raspberry Bubbles
02-01-2007, 02:47 PM
It's really hard to decide actually between Ohana's Summerhouse - the beach looks so much fun, but yet I can imagine that there is a fantastic atmosphere at Ohana's - and I heard that they have some kind of show there? Is that true?:joker:

Janet2k
02-01-2007, 04:01 PM
I wanted to let you know that my Sales Associate said they accomodated a group of 160 recently at Ohana in case you needed an indoor option to consider.

Geneva, welcome to the Dis!

Did the folks with the large group have to rent out the restaurant for their party? Or was the restaurant able to book enough tables during normal operating hours so that the group could be seated together? I'm curious to hear how it was handled. Any further information that you have to share would prove useful. Thank you.

Janet2k
02-01-2007, 04:33 PM
do you know i they host bufet brunches out there also??
do you pay per head or just a st price?
do they always do the scavenger hunt i love that idea?

Please discuss this venue with the FTW folks. They’ll be able to tell you what sort of food service can be set up. They’ll also let you know what costs are associated with this venue.

For example, since my event lasted into the evening, I had to pay for a portable lighting system. This was costly because with it came a permit for the power drop, the fee for an Electrician, the fee for a Set-up/Strike-down Technician, the fee for the lights, and so on. I shared some of this information in my trip report (link given earlier in this thread).

As to the scavenger hunt, that was something special that my Event Manger dreamed up. He custom-tailored the event just for me. It was wonderful.

If you’d like to set up something special for your own event, please discuss it with Disney. There are all sorts of options that may be added to an event (music, floral, linens, characters, and so on).

Rustyflwr3
02-01-2007, 08:59 PM
When my husband and I were honeymooning, we saw a luau going on at the summer house/beach! It was amazing looking and it made me wish I had our rehearsal dinner or some other event there! They had hula girls, hawaiin music, large floating paper lamps--everything! You can customize that space anyway you like! Good luck, sounds like fun!

allisonswonderland
02-02-2007, 08:28 AM
We loved our food - we did a buffet and had about 55 people they were mainly at the tables, though the kids played on the beach which was great, we had a bout 9 little guys running around which kept them occupied - because they were WILD!!! That also played into our menu, that and the fact that I have a cousin who is a vegetarian! (My trip report should be on here somewhere- Allison and Josh)
We had pulled pork and fried chicken, mac and cheese, corn on the cob, green beans, cole slaw potatoe salad cole slaw, mashed potatoes, buscuits and corn bread- this was actually a lunch option from a menu given to us from Yacht and Beach catering (my reception was at Ariels) - we chose this to accomodate the kids and my vegetarian cousin - but the chicken and pork was great and the mashed potatoes were so good - I could not stop eating them. I also sent them my reciepe for mac and cheese - it was not quite as good - but still recognized as my mac and cheese.

They also made my fiance a red velvet grooms cake - it was really good he went to school at the University of Mississippi and it was in the Shape of an M with an white Chocolate Colonel Reb - the mascot- on it. It all went off very well and was a great night. And so convenient -our dinner was at 6 and our rehearsal was at 4 at the WP and it was so nice being able to see the wedding pavilion across the water, I loved it!

Thanks Janet - I was really nice!

Janet2k
02-02-2007, 04:43 PM
When my husband and I were honeymooning, we saw a luau going on at the summer house/beach! It was amazing looking...

Rustyflwr3, I see from your signature that a "Congratulations!" is in order regarding your recent wedding. I wish you all the happiness in the world.

The event that you described sounded lovely. It reminded me of an event that I attended a few years ago. I should probably mention it here as another option for those who are looking for unique events.

I was at an evening beach party at the Yacht/Beach Club a few years ago. The event had a steel drum band, a balloon artist, and all sorts of arts & crafts projects as well as beach games (the arts & crafts projects and beach games were coordinated by Cast Members). There were scrumptious buffet stations set up on the beach (prime rib, lobster, shrimp, etc.), as well as a fully stocked bar. To top it all off, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse were in attendance and photo printers were set up on-site. That way everyone could get their portrait taken with the characters and then take home an 8"x10" glossy before the night was through. It really was a very fun party.

Janet2k
02-02-2007, 04:50 PM
We loved our food - we did a buffet and had about 55 people they were mainly at the tables, though the kids played on the beach which was great... They also made my fiance a red velvet grooms cake - it was really good...


Allisonswonderland, your party sounded absolutely lovely. And that Groom's Cake sounded delicious. Yum!

DisneyFairy19
02-02-2007, 05:05 PM
How cool... I would love to see some pics...:cool1:

Raspberry Bubbles
02-02-2007, 06:15 PM
I was at an evening beach party at the Yacht/Beach Club a few years ago. The event had a steel drum band, a balloon artist, and all sorts of arts & crafts projects as well as beach games (the arts & crafts projects and beach games were coordinated by Cast Members). There were scrumptious buffet stations set up on the beach (prime rib, lobster, shrimp, etc.), as well as a fully stocked bar. To top it all off, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse were in attendance and photo printers were set up on-site. That way everyone could get their portrait taken with the characters and then take home an 8"x10" glossy before the night was through. It really was a very fun party.

So Disney do have a steel drum band? I really wanted one of those at my wedding but I never thought they would find one. I am so happy to have read your post - so, so happy!

Janet2k
02-02-2007, 08:58 PM
So Disney do have a steel drum band?

In the past, I have seen the Steel Drum Band on the entertainment list. However, one never knows what the future holds in WDW. It is best to ask the FTW folks about this entertainment option.

But I have to add that the band that played at the Yacht/Beach Club party that I attended was marvelous. I seriously considered adding them to my Summerhouse event but couldn't fit them into the theme. And when my Vow Renewal rolled around, I had the same issue -- they just didn't fit into my theme.

I should also note that I wanted the Mariachi Band, too. But the same issue applied -- I couldn't fit them into my theme, dang it!

Again, ask Disney to provide you with a list of musical entertainment that may be booked. My fingers are crossed that both the Steel Drum and Mariachi Bands are on the current list.

Belle1981
02-02-2007, 10:02 PM
What a wonderful idea! So unique an so much fun!!!! AWESOME

Raspberry Bubbles
02-03-2007, 01:12 PM
In the past, I have seen the Steel Drum Band on the entertainment list. However, one never knows what the future holds in WDW. It is best to ask the FTW folks about this entertainment option.

But I have to add that the band that played at the Yacht/Beach Club party that I attended was marvelous. I seriously considered adding them to my Summerhouse event but couldn't fit them into the theme. And when my Vow Renewal rolled around, I had the same issue -- they just didn't fit into my theme.

I should also note that I wanted the Mariachi Band, too. But the same issue applied -- I couldn't fit them into my theme, dang it!

Again, ask Disney to provide you with a list of musical entertainment that may be booked. My fingers are crossed that both the Steel Drum and Mariachi Bands are on the current list.

Ohh, I will definately check! I really want a steel drum band and I was so excited when you mentioned one! How much fun! Theming weddings is so hard - it's a shame you couldn't fit them into your parties and your vow renewal!
popcorn::

Janet2k
02-04-2007, 01:06 AM
Ohh, I will definately check! I really want a steel drum band...

I just did a quick search of the 'net in regards to steel drum bands and Disney. On a Disney Cruise Line unofficial message board, there was a thread about the steel drum band being missing from recent cruises: click here (http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?p=8499841#post8499841). It appears that a letter writing campaign is underway to bring them back.

I also found at least one band (with a steel drum option) who claims to have played at many events in Walt Disney World: click here (http://www.landsharksband.com/Wedding_Reception_Entertainment_.htm) and click here (http://www.landsharksband.com/Steel_Drum_Band_Horn_Section_Band.htm).

So, if a steel drum band is what you want and it's not on Disney's musical entertainment list, discuss with the FTW folks the possibility of bringing in outside entertainment. There might be extra fees charged for this, but it certainly never hurts to ask.