Barrington, IL DJS

I had the pleasure of playing for the wedding of Melissa Bell and Eric Householder a couple of weeks ago at Pinstripes, in South Barrington, IL. Brides and grooms looking for Barrington, IL DJs and banquet halls would do well to consider Pinstripes, and of course Ameritune! As a wedding DJ in the Schaumburg/ Hoffman Estates area for the last 32 years, I’ve played at a lot of banquet halls, and I can say that Pinstripes has a couple of cool things going for it.

  1. Just 1 banqet room, so the staff is focused on you and your party.
  2. Variety- The wedding party reserved 3 bowling lanes starting at 10:30 pm , there was also a band playing downstairs, and some bocce lanes available.
  3. Location- Its right off 59 and 90 in South Barrington at the Arboretum center.
  4. Good food and service- Melissa and Eric had their cocktails served by the servers instead of having a bar in the room. You would think that it would make getting a drink a pain, but I never had to wait. The servers are attentive and friendly. Dinner was served family style. They had two kinds of salads, then plates of beef, chicken, risotto, potatoes, asparagus, and other delicious goodies. For desert, there was bread pudding, canoli chips, with dip, and some cupcakes that were all delicious and, unique.  Appetizers were creative and delicious too.
Melissa and Eric Householder 8/14/15

Melissa and Eric Householder 8/14/15

Melissa used to babysit our kids when they were little and she called me and said she wanted to hire me for her DJ I was so happy. I told the kids, who are now in there 20s and they was excited for her as well.  She’s not a little girl anymore, but she still has a beautiful glow inside. And I’m glad she loves to dance! One of her highlights was playing “Shoop” by Salt n Pepa, for her and all her girlfriends. A great time was had by all!  Thanks to Pinstripes for being so helpful to work with, too. I remember loading out and the wedding party was waiting for the shuttle to the Hotel.  They kept waiting and waiting and it didn’t show even though they said they were on the way. I told the manager and he arranged for a limo to take them back to the hotel and it was there before I left. Now that’s service…

Best of luck to Melissa and Eric!

Ameritune DJs and Video is available for your wedding in Chicago and the suburbs. call us at (630) 372 TUNE (8863) for details.

Wedding 101: Seating your guests

Just havin fun

Just havin fun

Howdy Ameritune fans, it’s been a while since my last blog post. Today I’d like to talk a little bit about seating arrangement and how to easily avoid problems.

At most weddings, there exists a natural conflict between the dancers and the talkers, also the younger generation, and the older generation. Dancers want to feel the beat, talkers want the volume low. The older generation usually wants to dance a little and talk a lot. The younger generation expects a louder volume and usually dance more, especially when they’ve visited the bar a few times!

As a wedding DJ in Chicago, I often run into situations that are less than ideal, seating-wise. The worst is when there is a table full of 70 year olds right in front of my speakers. Oops. Someones not gonna have a good time. It happens so often, that I bring along a box of foam earplugs to pass out at those tables. What’s a DJ to do?
This situation is easily avoided, by thoughtful planning when organizing your seating chart.

Remember these points-

1) People who are dancing usually like the volume up a bit, people who are talking don’t. It’s especially important to remember when choosing where Grandma will be sitting. Unless she’s a wild grandma that loves to party on the dance floor, it’s best to find the quietest spot in the room for her table.

2) The music gets louder the closer you are to the speakers or in a direct line of the speakers. The music is softer when you are seated behind, or to the side of the speakers, or far away from the speakers. Put your younger, guests there. (Not the two year olds, though. Their ears are tender)

3) Make sure there are no tables between your DJ and the dance floor. Nobody wants to sit at those tables once the music gets cranking.

4) Don’t forget to call Ameritune DJs and Video for your wedding entertainment needs 630 372-TUNE (8863)

McHenry Weddings

Those planning McHenry Weddings should check out Ameritune DJs and Video. On October 2, 2010 Ameritune Videotaped and DJed for Sara and Jeff Fewells wedding ceremony and reception. Here’s what Al, the DJ had to say.

This was a little different gig for me because I was also contracted to play for the ceremony at a park in McHenry. The reception was to follow at D’Andrea Banquets. There wasn’t going to be enough time for me to set up my DJ gear unless I did it before the ceremony. It made for a very long day, but I’m glad I did it that way, less stress is good! The weather for the afternoon ceremony was not the best. It was a blustery 60 degrees, and it ended up raining right before the ceremony started. Luckily, there were only a few drops and no damage to my PA system or our Videographers stuff. The ceremony went well and everybody hi-tailed it out of there. By the time I got to D’Andreas, I ended up having about 45 minutes to kill, so I took a little nap in the parking lot. SWEET!

Sara and Jeff Fewell

Sara and Jeff Fewell

Mama Carlson set the tone for this reception with her emotional welcoming toast at dinner- She made everyone cry a little, and then she ended it with …”and I hope everyone gets drunk tonight!” The crowd roared! This was the second great Carlson group I’ve played for this year. I had played at the brides sisters (Matron of Honor Breeona and Mark Nachtmans) wedding a few months earlier.

Ameritune Video interviews Matron of Honor

Ameritune Video interviews Matron of Honor

As the night went on, they got more and more fun, the dance floor was always full, sometimes we even had to make more room for people to dance.

Hows the weather up there?

Hows the weather up there?

Sara’s Brother Brad is the last single Carlson from this family. Hurry up and get married Brad, I love playing for you guys!

Just havin fun

Just havin fun

I took a million pics at this wedding and you can see them on the Ameritune Facebook page. Thanks and good luck to Jeff and Sara! Read more DJ BLOG. Ameritune is available to DJ and Video your special day, call us at (630) 372-TUNE (8863) for info.

Al’s wedding DJ tips

Buffalo Grove DJs

Looking forBuffalo Grove DJs? Last week, Ameritune’s Al Mitchell played at The Arboretum Club in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. It was the wedding reception of Amy Glass and Greg Hammond on October 3rd, 2010. The day began a little harried for me because I went to the wrong banquet hall. In my mind, they were at the Meadows Club, but on my contract, they were at the Arboretum Club! Once again, good thing I always allow extra time. In over 27 years of DJing, I hadn’t made that mistake yet. Lol. This was the first time I had ever played at The Arboretum Club and I was impressed. The room is easily accessible from the back parking lot and the staff had their act together. I went to the foyer area after setting up and guests were arriving and were being served very tasty hors d’ourves and enjoying the open bar. Amy and Greg wanted to be unique with their cake. So they had a very small wedding cake that was just for them and a cup cake tree for the guests. They were delicious!

Cupcakes instead of wedding cake

Cupcakes instead of wedding cake

In order to get Amy and Greg to kiss, guests clinked on their glasses and then Amy and Greg pulled a couples name from a hat and announced that they would come up and show Amy and Greg how to kiss, then Amy and Greg would duplicate their kiss. I played kissing music and flashed the dancing lights when each couple would kiss. Amy and Greg were racing fans, so I dropped in the sound bite”Gentlemen Start Your Engines ” when it was there turn to kiss. This was great fun and got a nice vibe going in the room. Some people who I was sitting with were hoping that they would get picked, so I went up and mentioned it to Greg when they weren’t paying attention. Of course they gave us a good show when Greg called their name.

Mr. and Mrs. Greg and Amy Hammond

Mr. and Mrs. Greg and Amy Hammond

Greg and Amy danced to Bring It On Home by Little Big Town. Later, we brought the Party Pack out and had some fun on the dance floor with glow necklaces, blowup guitars, and YMCA hats.

These guys had a good time!

These guys had a good time!

Good luck to Amy and Greg! Read more of Al’s DJ TIPS. If you’d like to see more pics from this wedding check out our facebook page Ameritune DJs on Facebook For booking and other info call Ameritune at (630) 372-8863 or email us info@ameritune.com.

Wheaton DJs

Looking for Wheaton DJs , Ameritunes Al Mitchell played at Arrowhead Golf Course in Wheaton, IL for the wedding reception of Sara Iwanski and Scott Falli on October 9th, 2010. They also booked out wedding video service. They lucked out with perfect weather, although the bridal party looked a little warm when they arrived. I guess they had been taking pics outside in the sun. I remembered a lot of faces because we had done Sara’s brothers wedding a few years earlier. I remembered that this group liked to have fun, and man they were ready to party. I didn’t get dads dinner music list till the cocktail hour. There were around 11 songs on the list and I didn’t have any of them, so I downloaded them on the spot with my laptop and my high speed internet card. Yay! Dad was happy- mission accomplished.

Sara and Scott were basically neat for the cake cutting, although the married guys were cheering for “messy”

sara-cakeimg_0349

The room was shaped very long and narrow with the dance floor and head table in the middle. When figuring out how to show our Photo Montage so that everyone could see, I recommended that we show it 3 times. Once with the screen aimed at the head table, then once right, and then once left. Sara and Scott agreed that this would be the best way so that everyone could see it. The video was 6 minutes long and I played different musc each time, and since people were eating dessert, it worked out perfectly. No one had to move to see the screen. After the video it was time for the dancing to begin. Scott and Sara picked Only You Can Love Me Like This by Keith Urban. You can see that the mood was very nice and romantic.

Mr and Mrs Scott and Sara Falli

Mr and Mrs Scott and Sara Falli

The second and third dances were dad /daughter and mom/ son dances then it was off to the races with open dancing. There was about 225 people there and I think they all were on the dance floor at one time or other. There were so many requests that it was hard to get them all in, but the group was understanding and patient.

Shout

Shout

As you can see RJ, our videographer was on top of things all night. What a great group, and a great party this was. Many thanks to the Iwanski family for taking such good care of us and their generousity! I took a ton more pictures and you can see them on our facebook page. Best wishes and good luck to the new Mr. and Mrs. Falli! If you’d like to read more DJ Wedding Tips.

Riverside Receptions

Last weekend Ameritune’s Al Mitchell played for the wedding reception of Erica and Kevin Tierney at Riverside Receptions and Conference Center, in Geneva Illinois. There were around one hundred and fifteen guests and the reception was from 5:00 till 10:30 pm on Sunday 10/10/10. Wow, easy to remember your anniversary! It was a beautiful day and the ceremony was done out in the Courtyard at 4:00. Things must have been running on time because people started coming in the second floor room at 4:30. Good thing I was early, it was my pleasure to play an extra 1/2 hour of cocktail music for the guests (at no charge).

Erica and Kevin wanted to have fun, so they did a few things differently. Instead of the traditional clinking of glasses, I set up a microphone on the dance floor and if you wanted Erica and Kevin to kiss, you had to make an animal sound in the mic! People were having a good time with this, and there was a lot of kissing at the head table. They also had a photo booth, and the Ameritune Party Toy pack, which includes glow necklaces, YMCA hats, and inflatable guitars. There was a photo montage during desert and Mad Lib wedding tablets at the tables for guests to fill in the blanks during dinner. Later we did the Anniversary Countdown Dance to see who the longest married couple was on the dance floor.

Mr and Mrs Kevin and Erica Tierney

Mr and Mrs Kevin and Erica Tierney

Erica and Kevin danced to Lucky by Mraz/ Calliet. Later, there was a dance for Erica and her two brothers (who walked her down the aisle) and then Kevin danced with his mom. The dance floor was busy all night long. Erica helped me out with a list of Spanish music to get for her relatives and I played a bunch of all eras and styles as well. The highlight of the night was when I played YMCA and we had 3 celebrity dance leaders taking the party to the next level.

Celebrity YMCA leaders

Celebrity YMCA leaders

I know RJ our videographer got some great shots of that, they’re going to love their wedding video! All in all, I would say it was an awesome wedding. The folks at Riverside Receptions and Conference Center did a bang up job, too. Everything was perfect.

Uh Huh

Uh Huh

I took a lot of pictures at this wedding and you can see them on our facebook page Ameritune DJs and Video/ Facebook . Good luck to Erica and Kevin and their lovely daughter Meggan! Click to to read more DJ Als Blog. For pricing and availability call Ameritune at (630) 372-8863.

Chicago DJ Tips

Del Webb Huntley Wedding

Ameritune’s Al Mitchell played another Del Webb Huntley Wedding on the Seventeenth of September 2010 for Jodi Fetting and Chris West. This was wacky because I played there the weekend before. The dancefloor is too big in this place, so I talked to Jodi about setting up the tables straddling the dancefloor rather than around it effectively making it smaller. This worked well as people don’t like to dance in too big of wide open spaces. The size of their group was 115 people. For parties of 220 or more, I wouldn’t recommend making that dancefloor smaller. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. The ceremony was outside with a Dove Release. This is only my second Dove release in all the years of DJing.

Dove Release

Dove Release

In the ayer- ayer

west-dovesimg_0232

Actually they are homing pidgeons. They flew around a couple of times then headed off back home. There were about 12 of them so it was a cool display. I had played at another wedding that Jodi was at and she liked what I did so she hired me and trusted me to pick most of their music. I helped her out with ceremony music, then it was cocktailing in the foyer and then dinner and dancing in the main room.

Jodi and Chris West

Jodi and Chris West

Jodi and Chris danced to I Just Call You Mine by Martina McBride. After their first dance Jodi had a dance with her Grandfather to Faith Hill’s There You’ll be, and I dedicated the song in memory of her Grandma Gummy. It was a touching moment. After that we had the Dad/ Daughter dance , Mom/Son Dance, then open dancing. That’s a lot of slow songs in a row, but Jodi was anxious to get them all in, and it worked out fine. I played a wide variety of styles of music and as usual, I was glad that I had my laptop with to play some requests that I downloaded on the spot. Very handy indeed! The weather was perfect, which meant that a lot of people were hanging outside instead of in the room which made it a little tough to keep the dancefloor full, but I received a lot of compliments and I think everyone had a good time. Good luck to Jodi and Chriss. For more info about booking and availability call Ameritune at (630) 372-TUNE (8863) More DJ Wedding Tips. To see more pics check out our Facebook page.

Sycamore Weddings

People planning Sycamore Weddings should check out Ameritune DJs and Video. On September 4th, 2010 Ameritune’s Al Mitchell played at the Sycamore VFW for the wedding of Brook Landes and Jacob Coughran. It was a beautiful September day and it only took around a half hour to get there. Still, I left plenty of time because I like to set up relaxed and at my own pace. The VFW was hard to find on the internet. I couldn’t even find a listing on google. I ended up calling there and getting directions. Brook and Jake had decided on a 50’s theme for their wedding. In prep, I had downloaded a bunch of oldies to play for the cocktail and dinner hour. There was old time candy set out on all the tables which really reminded me of the candy my dad used to hide from us under the front seat of his car. They were expecting a lot of people – over 250, and the VFW was challenged to fit everyone in, but that just makes for a better party!

Brook and Jacob Coughran

Brook and Jacob Coughran

Soon, everyone filled the place and beer was flowing from the tapper. After a quick intro and a few toasts, the buffet was open! Food was good and plentyful. I got a kick out of their cake topper, which was a bride dragging her groom away from his tools. I guess that was appropriate because Jake was an avid mechanic. After dinner, we took down a few tables in the dancing area to make more room. Just after the first dance, our special guest, Michael St. Angel aka Elvis appeared, courtesy of the Parents of The Groom.

Elvis aka Michael St. Angel

Elvis aka Michael St. Angel

He did an awesome show for about 40 minutes and kept everyone entertained and dancing. All ages loved him, as you can see. He sang a lot of Elvis popular favorites, but also some of his lessor know tunes as well. I found him to be an excellent performer, and he really appreciated my premium sound system.

brook-good-dancingimg_0179

It’s been a while since I’ve played a wedding away from the city. I really enjoyed the casual friendliness of everyone I met, the slower pace, and all the kids having fun too. A special thanks to Jakes parents who booked me and their generous gratuity too. Good luck to Brook and Jake, and many years of happiness. For more pics of this wedding see our facebook page . Click if you wanna read more blog and tips Ladies and Gentelmen Elvis has left the building……

Cary Weddings

People planning Cary Weddings choose Ameritune for their DJ and Videography. Last week Ameritune’s DJ Jim Schneeberger played at D’Andreas banquets for the wedding of Rhonda (Gillund) & Jason Dixon 09-18-2010 . Here’s what he had to say- As the evening began I was able to meet the families and was immediately impressed by how nice and relaxed everybody was. I was informed that the ceremony went beautifully and everyone was ready to party.

Downstairs at D' Andreas

Downstairs at D’ Andreas

Rhonda and Jason were very calm and both looked fantastic together. The photographers were right on top of things and had all their photos taken early so the bride & groom had plenty of time to visit their friends and family. We started with the wedding Party intros. They chose the song Say Hey! I love you for their grand entrance. The wedding party all did some cool moves on the dance floor as they were introduced. Then we all enjoyed a nice speech from the brides Dad. Then we used the Ameritune Big Screen to show an 11 minute video that the groom prepared- it was a big hit. Best man & Matron of honor gave nice speeches, The Deacon gave a prayer and the bride and groom came up on the dance floor and did a sand ceremony. They went very slow and we played Keith Urbans Making memories of us as the background music. Very Nice!. Then a quick cake cut and dinner is served.

Rhonda and Jason Dixon

Rhonda and Jason Dixon

After Dinner the dancing started. They danced, Danced and Danced. Kevin Bacon would have been impressed. The bride was a country music line dance fan and her and some of the girls shared a few line dances that were awesome.

Ride a Horse Not A Cowboy

Ride a Horse Not A Cowboy

We even had a visit from a real horse during Save a horse Ride a cowboy! Another great wedding in the books. You can see more pictures from this wedding and other weddings on the Ameritune Facebook Page. If you’d like to read more blog and tips. Find out why Jim is one of our most popular DJs call us at (630) 372-TUNE (8863) for more info.

Venuti’s Banquets

Ameritune’s Al Mitchell worked at Venuti’s Banquets last week. Here’s what he had to say- On September 3rd I worked at Venuti’s Banquets in Addison for the wedding of Kelly Clark and Ameer Harvey. This was the start of labor day weekend and there was a lot of hustle and bustle getting to the hall, good thing I left extra time. Although we’ve had DJs play there before, it was my first time at Venutis and I was impressed. The doorman actually held the door open while I was loading in! The hall itself is beautiful and for this occasion they had uplighting in the room. The purple lights didn’t perfectly match the colors of the room, but it still made for a festive atmosphere. Cocktails were held in the spacious foyer starting at 7, and they had butler style hors d’ouvres circulating so the guests were well taken care of. Ameer was a dentist and Kelly a Dental Hygenist, so they had this awesome ice sculpture of a giant tooth at the bar. I later found out that is was actually a Martini Louge.

Intros were dramatic- The bridal party were introduced from the main entrance and each couple did a little dance as I played “ All I do is win”. Kelly and Ameer were introduced from the top of the balcony, and when they got down the stairs, the indoor fireworks went off! As was a suprise, someone had contracted a pyrotechnics company to load the centerpieces with electronically triggered sparklers. It was a great display that, unfortunately I was barely able to capture with my camera.

Fireworks at Intros

Fireworks at Intros

After dinner and cake cutting, I showed their Video Montage on our equipment, then it was first dance time- to Howie Days Collide.

Dr. and Mrs. Ameer Harvey

Dr. and Mrs. Ameer Harvey

ater in the evening, there was another dramtic event at the top of the stairs when Kelly was reintroduced, after changing into her Bridal Party Dress, with her bridemaids in tow. I played Single Ladies/ Beyonce for the girls and announced to Ameer that even though Kelly was now his wife, that she’s still be partying with her Single girlfriends, lol. The end of the night came too soon with the final dance being Somewhere Over The Rainbow with Ameer and Kelly in a circle.

Last Dance

Last Dance

Thanks for having me and good luck to Kelly and Ameer! I posted a lot more pictures on the Ameritune Facebook page. If you’ d like to read more of Al’s DJ Tips. Call (630) 372-TUNE (8863) for booking and availability.

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