Wild Basin Lodge Wedding Expo 2019

Alone at the River Site

Wild Basin Lodge Wedding Expo 2019

Saturday, March 23, 2019


Guests Register Here

Vendors Register Here

It’s all about you and your wedding! Please join us for an afternoon devoted to helping you find vendors and have a fabulous time doing it. Florists, bakers, photographers, transportation companies, and more will be onsite ready to answer your questions. Indulge in free samples from our five-star menu. Don’t let the stress of planning get to you, we’ll have complimentary beer, wine, and champagne to help you unwind. We will also be offering group tours of our beautiful wedding venue all afternoon. Give us a call if you’d like to schedule a private tour before or after the Expo, or anytime, we’d love to have you up! And who doesn’t like giveaways?! Many of our vendors will be offering discounts and prizes. The Wild Basin Lodge’s Grand Prize? A free wedding at the Wild Basin Lodge!

This event is FREE, with no fees of any kind, including being entered into our Grand Prize Giveaway. Please Register Here so we know to expect you and any friends and family along for the ride.

Vendors, Register Here to be a part of this exciting event. Space is filling up quickly, so reserve your booth today!

Succulent Cake and Cupcakes
Roses, hydrangeas, astilbes

WBLodge Wedding Vendor Spotlight- Kris Vaswig Photography

Wild Basin Lodge Vendor Spotlight- Kris Vaswig Photography
Photographer Kris Vaswig always makes a point to snap a pic with the couple he's photographing. He is originally from California and enjoys skiing, hiking, and spending time with his dog, a “goofball breed”, named Loki.

This month’s vendor spotlight is photographer Kris Vaswig. Kris is based out of Longmont and has been living in Colorado for the past 19 years. He began dabbling with photography as a hobby and ultimately followed his passion and made it a career. Kris’ primary focus is on landscapes and he has held multiple commercial contracts for his pieces. But photographing weddings holds a special place in his heart and he has captured thousands of magical moments since he started working weddings 10 years ago.

Kris shared with me why he finds photographing weddings appealing.

“Photographing weddings is the polar opposite of landscapes- it’s stressful, fast-paced, you have to be in a million places at once, and there are no re-dos. Overall, it’s just fun.”

“Have there been any memorable moments from your shoots that stand out?”

“I worked a wedding where the bride and groom rode off on horses. Using the horses really added dimension to the pictures but the animals definitely took more coaxing than most subjects. Ultimately we had to use a bramble with bells on it much like dangling keys for a baby.”

During another shoot, the bride and groom wanted to hike into Rocky Mountain National Park to take some photos but it was exceptionally muddy. What was the solution? Kris gave the bride his hiking boots to wear!

Wild Basin Lodge Vendor Spotlight- Kris Vaswig Photography

“The Wild Basin area is one of my favorites. I’ve hiked everything off of the Wild Basin Trailhead multiple times. That’s why I love working weddings at the Wild Basin Lodge. So far, it’s the only venue I’m booked at for 2019.

Choosing a photographer can make or break your special day. Kris had some advice to share for those planning their nuptials.

Wild Basin Lodge Vendor Spotlight- Kris Vaswig Photography

“It’s easy to find a cheap photographer, but they’re probably cheap for a reason. They don’t know what they’re doing or they have poor equipment. And I have heard so many horror stories of couples who have had friends shoot their wedding. When it comes down to it, your photographer is the person that you will spend the most time with on your wedding day- even more than your significant other. Be sure that you choose someone that you gel with. Someone that doesn’t just know how to take a picture but knows how to photograph you to get the best looks naturally.”

“Once the soulmates have found their photographer soulmate, what aspects are important to discuss with that person?”

“Be sure to tell your photographer if you plan on doing something surprising or unique during the day. If the world’s best choreographed dance or unique toast goes down, yeah, they’ll capture it, but they could have been at a better angle or found better lighting if they’d just known.” Don’t worry about your photographer spilling the beans, they’re part of your team and don’t want to ruin any surprises you have planned for the guests.

“A lot of couples are split on the First Look dilemma. What are your thoughts?”

“I strongly recommend taking pictures together before the ceremony. It takes a lot of stress away and eliminates jitters- you know for sure that the other person showed up. It’s also a beautiful private moment that then allows you to enjoy all the pomp and circumstance of the ceremony. First Looks always photograph well for picture books.”

Kris proudly states “not my job” is not in his vocabulary. Keeping people on time, running to get the wedding rings, bandaging bridesmaids’ feet, whatever it takes to make sure the bride and groom have the best day possible.

In addition to photographing weddings, Kris also offers engagement shoots if you have also booked your wedding with him. His pricing is reasonable compared to other local photographers and if you mention this article he will take $250 off any package. Check out Kris’ galleries here.

Wild Basin Lodge Vendor Spotlight- Kris Vaswig Photography
A beautiful starry night in the Meadow at the Wild Basin Lodge, captured by Kris Vaswig

Before you hire a wedding DJ, here are some questions you should be asking:



  • How long have you been a wedding DJ?
  • How many weddings have you DJ’d? This does not necessarily mean that this particular DJ is not fantastic, it might however mean that there is more of a chance for a hiccup.
  • How many weddings a weekend do you DJ at? This one is important. You definitely do not want to sign with a DJ that is committed to more than just your wedding on your big day.
  • Will you be the DJ at our wedding, or could we possibly end up with someone we are not familiar with? If you choose your DJ based on their personality, you want to make sure that personality shows up on your wedding day. If there is a possibility that another DJ will be working your event, you might want to consider meeting with them as well.
  • Have you even DJ’d an event at WIld Basin Lodge? It is important that your DJ be familiar with your event center. If they are not, will they be willing to take the extra time to get to know the space before your wedding day? At Wild Basin, we allow our couples to change ceremony sites at any time, is your DJ flexible?

Style:Please make sure you like the DJ's style

  • Do you have a video from a recent wedding we can view?
  • Do you have references from some recent weddings that we can contact?
  • What’s your style and can you help me choose music? A DJ that knows your style and what type of atmosphere you wish to create with your music, can help you choose a song when you are stuck and looking for “that perfect song”.
  • If you are unable to make it, what is your backup plan?
  • Do you take and play requests from guests? Can we give you a “Do Not Play” list and will       you adhere to it? If you will want your guests to be able to request songs; it’s fun and a great way for your guests to feel even more comfortable. There are DJ’s who will not accept requests. However, if you decide not to grant guests song requests, as the DJ how they will handle song requests from guests. Will they just say they do not have that particular song?

Price and Value:

  • What is your rate, and does this include travel, setup, moving between ceremony and reception and breaking down?
  • What do you charge for Overtime and what exactly constitutes Overtime?
  • How much is your deposit and what is your payment plan?
  • In the event of cancellation, what is your cancellation and/or refund policy?Sometimes you get what you pay for...
  • Do you carry liability insurance?
  • Will we meet again before my wedding? The answer to this question will be based on your comfort level. Usually, you should not need to meet, face to face, with your DJ again.
  • Does your equipment require any special electrical outlets? What type of space/stage do you require?
  • Do you advertise by setting up a banner or sign at our wedding? Another personal preference question. 
  • What are your timeline/timeframe needs for setup etc.?
  • What will you be wearing at our wedding?
  • Do you have any dietary restrictions? With this in mind, any vendor that is present at your wedding through dinner, should  be fed. As a result, you need to respect their dietary needs.
  • Do you have a policy on drinking and or smoking while working our wedding?

Granted, finding the perfect DJ can be a little tricky, However, these questions will help you weed through them. It isn’t really just about asking for pricing. Nevertheless, there are a lot of great DJ’s and prices vary. Some will give you all day, some only a few hours. Others will give you a discount based on your venue. Don’t be afraid to ask. With years of wedding planning experience behind us, trust us when we say not all DJ’s are created equal. If you need some more guidance, just give us a call or email us. 

Wild Basin Lodge DJ’s:





Make sure you take a peak at the Wild Basin Lodge Photo Gallery

Photo Sources: Wedding Connection of Hudson Valley, Surround Sound DJ and Tucson DJ Service

Our Engagement Story: Megan & Mack

Wild Basin Couple Engagement Photo

But I love your feet 
only because they walked 
upon the earth and upon 
the wind and upon the waters, 
until they found me. 

~ Pablo Neruda

I had been travelling for work the week prior to Mack popping the question, and had not seen him in person for a few days. I was flying directly to our friend’s wedding, and Mack was meeting me there. I had been teasing these friends of ours because they were getting married on “my wedding day” — October 17th (the day that 12 year old me had decided was the best possible day to get married, because with my birthday falling in July, an October anniversary would perfectly space out all of the gifts – obviously – and 17 was my favorite number). Little did I know, but on this October 17th, 2015, Mack had a surprise in store for me.


The day of the wedding, Mack had been acting romantic all day– slow dancing with me in the living room of our rented airbnb house, reciting poems about love, telling me I looked beautiful. I even remarked to a friend of ours that I thought the wedding mindset had gotten to him a little. We went to the wedding, had a grand time, danced the night away, and around 11pm, Mack said that he wanted to head back to the house, so we left. He was racing the clock to propose before midnight. 🙂


We reached the house, and the other couple we were sharing the house with went upstairs to change so that we could all take a soak in the hot tub. I turned to go change, when Mack grabbed my hand, and quietly pulled me into the living room. There, he recited “Your Feet”. by Pablo Neruda (a poem that had special significance– look for it on our wedding day! It won’t be hard to find), and again I thought how oddly romantic he was being. Then he dropped down on one knee, pulled out the gorgeous ring, and said “Will you?”


With my utter surprise and shock, it took me a moment to say “Yes, of course!”, but I did. There is an indeterminate amount of time that I have no recollection of, but Mack tells me it was full of joy, laughter, and happy tears. Our friends came downstairs, learned of the proposal (Mack had kept it a secret from everyone), and we opened champagne and celebrated into the early hours of the morning.

Wild Basin Couple Engagement Photo

Even though we won’t be getting married on October 17th, at least I can always say I got engaged then!

Our anniversary will be October 21, 2017.

I couldn’t be more excited to start this portion of our journey together.

Vendor Spotlight: Bella Capelli

Get a Trial

Have you ever had an awful haircut?  The kind that makes you want to put a paper bag over your head?  Or call in sick for a few days?  Thankfully, I’ve only had one deeply traumatizing haircut, but that one was enough to last me a lifetime.  It’s embarrassing to admit, but I cried the entire way home from the salon that afternoon.  I felt so many emotions.  Frustrated with myself for paying so much money on a hideous style.  Ashamed that I hadn’t been brave enough to tell the stylist that I was unhappy.  Betrayed after I trusted this disappointing stranger.  Yet she never knew how much I hated that haircut.

I learned a valuable lesson that day: you HAVE to say something if you’re truly not satisfied with the service.  As uncomfortable as it was, I had to use this skill while planning my wedding.

Which brings me to today’s blog post.  If you take away nothing else today, please hear this:  Get a hair and makeup trial for your wedding!  There are SO many reasons why:

  • To make sure your skin doesn’t react poorly to the makeup
  • Get to know your stylist’s personality and comfort level with your needs
  • Pamper yourself before the wedding
  • Excuse to get dressed up and go out to dinner that night… or stay in and just look adorable while you watch Moana
  • Narrow down your inspiration photos from 67 to just a few with professional guidance
  • See if a smoky eye is perfect or too dramatic for your big day
  • Verify that your hair accessories (veil vs. comb, clip vs. tiara) will work well with your hair style
  • Test the longevity, durability, and “pokiness” of your hair pins
  • Make sure the little wisps of hair don’t tickle your neck and drive you bonkers
  • Seek beauty prep tips for the weeks leading up to the wedding, since stylists always have great ideas
  • Gauge if you feel better in naturally blended or wing-tipped eyeliner
  • Practice NOT touching and smudging your face
  • Ask if your (curly, frizzy, stick straight, thin, thick, short, or unruly) hair will work for a particular favorite style you found on Pinterest before getting your hopes up
  • Test out how long that lipstick stain really lasts
  • Acclimate your eyelids to the weight of false lashes
  • Decide if you’re going to need bronzer or if your natural glow is sufficient
  • Make sure your stylist is reliable, doesn’t cancel on you at the last minute, and can show up for the trial appointment on time
  • Determine professionalism: Does he/she bring a contract to the trial, or are they unprepared?
  • When the trial is over, do they offer to snap a few photos for you, or leave you awkwardly requesting this favor?
  • Get pumped up for the actual day, since you can now visualize your gorgeous self


How would I know?

To be honest, I actually had to do two hair and makeup trials.  The first lady seemed really nice, but rescheduled my trial three (THREE!) times.  After the trial, I felt a bit like a drag queen with caked makeup and orange tinted lipstick.  My eyeliner was overly dramatic, and I accidentally smudged it on the car ride home.  She botched my hair, then didn’t offer to take any photos of her work.  So… I didn’t realize how awful I looked until I got home and used a mirror to look at the back of my hair.  Sensing my deep disappointment, my fiancé insisted that I use a different hair and makeup vendor.  After agonizing for a week about how to word the “break up” email with this lady, I pulled off the Band-Aid and sent my notice that I’d be using someone else for the wedding.  Fortunately, she neglected to ask for my signature on the contract I’d printed and brought with me.  Her lack of professionalism served me in this singular way.

My point: If you find yourself in a similar situation, please don’t feel guilty about demanding the best.  Weddings are expensive, and you deserve to have full confidence in your investment.  The right vendors can make all the difference in your experience.

Lucky for you, Wild Basin Lodge has an extensive list of tried-and-true vendors.  Let’s take a closer look at Bella Capelli, our preferred vendor for hair and makeup services.


 The Experts

Bella Capelli is a partnership of moms who cherish the balance of family and having a successful career.  The company was started by Christie Nagl many years ago, and they’ve built a stellar reputation in the industry ever since.  They frequently travel to Wild Basin Lodge, so all you have to do is show up in your button down shirt or robe, and you’re set.  Mimosa in hand, you can relax in our bridal suite while the ladies of Bella Capelli work their magic.

WBL: Tell us a little about the history of your business.

BC: I started doing hair 18 years ago and became a hairstylist specifically to do wedding hair. I owned a full service salon in Estes for a long time and did weddings there up until I had my first son, eight and a half years ago. At that time I closed the salon and decided to start doing only weddings so that I could focus the rest of my time on being a stay at home mom.  Adrienne, who I had grown up with, and Traci, who is married to my husband’s cousin, both worked with me in my salon. When I closed the salon they continued to do weddings with me and worked other places until they too had their kids. Now they stay home with their littles and still do hair and makeup with me. Adrienne has been with me about 15 years and Traci for 13 years. Over time, my two sisters saw how wonderful it was to be able to stay home with the kids and have a job on the side so they both got certified to do makeup. Melissa has been with us for about 6 years and Julie for about 4.

There is nothing better than being able to work alongside some of your favorite people. Plus, having a job that is flexible enough to work around family schedules is amazing. All five of us truly feel blessed!

WBL: Do you have any “Pro Tips” or words of wisdom for brides as they prepare for their wedding?

BC: It is your day. Do what makes you and your fiancé happy. As far as hair and makeup go, make sure you are comfortable and feel like you. You don’t want to look back at pictures and not recognize yourself. Don’t get me wrong, everything should be a little bigger and fancier but still holding true to your style.

WBL: What is one thing that you love about your industry?

BC: We love all the joy that surrounds someone’s wedding day. It’s hard not to be happy when surrounded by happiness. We also love all the wonderful vendors we get to see and work with. We are lucky to be in this industry, in this area, with amazing people!

WBL: Do you have a personal favorite memory from your wedding day you’d like to share?

BC: I’m sure we all have our favorite memories but I have 2 personally that stand out. I love the memory of entering the church to see my super sentimental, sobbing husband waiting for me at the end of the aisle. He is just a big teddy bear and I love him! Also, my dad and I took tango lessons for the father/daughter dance and told no one. My dad is not a dancer so the reactions were priceless. That moment was really special and fun! It was such a great day and there are endless memories. Now we have been married 10 1/2 years.

Bella Capelli translates in Italian to “beautiful hair,” and the photos on their website speak for themselves.  Don’t repeat my mistake of going through multiple hair and makeup trials.  Save yourself the emotional stress and shoot the ladies at Bella Capelli and email as soon as possible.  They are frequently fully booked 6 months or more in advance.

-A presto!




Christie Nagl