In this episode of the Calvert County Lifestyle podcast Val Mayer is back to tell us about the 2nd annual community wedding along with many of the local businesses that are involved with the event. In the studio we had CJ Curtis, Danny Douglas, Cheryl Holiday, Val & Brian Mayer, and Donald McGuinn. This year the wedding is happening today, May 21st, 2015! Here is a list of all the businesses and individuals that participated.
Blondie’s Baking Company – Cindy Selby
Crow Entertainment – CJ Curtis (DJ Ricky)
Danny Douglas Photography – Danny Douglas
Floral Expressions – Aut & Connie Fuller
Legacy Limousine – Mike Hill
Maryland Country Caterers – David Benson & Jennifer Endres
Maertens Fine Jewelry – Heather Maertens
Natural Looks By Victoria – Victoria Ronin
Remax One – Val & Brian Mayer
Smile & Click Photo Booth – Donald McGuinn
We’d like to thank all of the local businesses involved with putting on this amazing event and wish Patrick & Cheryl a lifetime of joy together!
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You are listening to YourCalvert.com, Calvert County Lifestyle Podcast, episode no. 9. In this episode, is a special episode as it’s the second annual community wedding podcast. We’re bringing Val Mayer back, but in addition to Val, we have a whole bunch of other small businesses that are taking part in this project this year, are here in the studio with me – stay tuned!
Welcome to the Calvert County Lifestyle Podcast, by YourCalvert.com! The original podcast exclusively for Calvert County and dedicated to helping you get the most from the place you love to play or call home. Listen for the latest events, food and drink reviews, business and real estate updates, interesting interviews and more! Now, here’s your host: Clif Bridegum!
Clif: Alright, we’re going to jump straight into this episode, but before we do, if you’d like to get the show notes or see the list or visit the websites of any of the companies listed or mentioned in this podcast, you can go to yourcalvert.com/9. Just the number, you don’t need to spell it out, just the number 9. That’ll take you straight over to the show notes page, and you’ll have all the links and everything else mentioned in this podcast right there, on that page for you, as well as a full transcript if you prefer to read something. Val, will you come on and say hi to everybody and tell the folks what this wedding is all about?
Val: Hey everybody! First, I’d like to say it’s so exciting to be here, again another year! It’s just an amazing thing to be a part of. Thank you so much, Clif for helping us get the word out. I think it’s so important for our community to know that their local businesses here are so active in their community. I’ve said it before, as a real estate agent here in this community that we ask of our community so I think it’s very important that we give back to our community and we’re blessed for it. So, I’d like to touch a little bit on why we’re doing this, how it came about and let folks know what exactly is going on.
Clif: Sounds great, Val. But before we do, let’s go ahead and jump in. We don’t just have Val here this year. We actually have a few other businesses as well that are contributing, so let’s go ahead and go around the room and get everybody say their name and what company they’re with.
Brian: Hi everybody – it’s Brian here, Val’s husband with Remax One.
Danny: Danny Douglas with Danny Douglas Photography.
Donald: Donald McGuinn with Smile & Click Photo Booth.
CJ: CJ Curtis with Crow Entertainment.
Clif: And I’m Clif Bridegum with YourCalver. Alright, so Val, can you give us a little recap of the event that happened last year?
Val: Yes, absolutely! So, last years what started out just a small little idea, I had a couple, local couple that I was friends with their parents. They were in college, they had saved money for their wedding, for a beautiful venue in Virginia on a mountaintop, on a winery – just gorgeous venue. And the opportunity had come up for this couple to go on a mission trip to help children in the Middle East. Even though you’re on a mission trip, you still need a certain amount of money to get you there and to pay for certain things.
They decided as a couple to take the money they saved for their wedding and use it to go to the mission, and I thought ‘Oh my gosh!’ there’s nothing more noble to me. So I hid them on Facebook so they couldn’t see the post, and I reached out and said: Listen, I have a little idea. This couple, I told their stories, they’re now getting married at their parent’s small rambler in town, quaint little wedding. Will there be photographers – friends photographers on Facebook, if there be, one of you please step out and surprise them, maybe give them a free photography session as a wedding gift for doing something so grand.
Well, Danny Douglas, of Danny Douglas Photography which is here today in the studio, is the very first person who reached out to me and said ‘Val, I would be interested in doing that, please give me details’. Last year we didn’t have Danny cos the wedding was on his 50th birthday. So Danny had to step out. So let him slide on that, but we’re so happy to have him here this year – he’s a phenomenal photographer. He did my business cards for me, and everybody knows that they’re the most beautiful real estate cards in all of Southern Maryland, so when you see it you’ll know how good Danny is. Right, Danny?
Val: So the wedding was just amazing. It was beautiful, it was at a winery here in Calvert County and all these local businesses stepped up to the plate, helped me host this wedding; their time, their services, all paid for. The wedding was just amazing, gorgeous. We had such a big turnout and such a grand – the whole thing was planned perfectly. We said ‘You know what? It felt so good to give back to our community’ and the bride and groom and their families were so appreciative. So we said we’re gonna do this annually, let’s do this again but how can we find another couple? How can we do that?
Facebook works wonders! So I put an ad again, first we talked it over with all the local businesses again and they all agreed and said ‘Yes, definitely we all want to be a part of something like this, let’s do it!’ So we put it on Facebook and we asked for letters and said ‘Please tell us…’ – the rules were, you know, be a local of Southern Maryland couple, and give us in this letter, tell us why it is you feel that you should be chosen to have this group of businesses throw you a wedding.
So we got about 9 letters and, of course, it’s very hard to choose from, because they are all, they all pull your heart, they were all wonderful letters, but we eventually decided on Cherly Holiday and Patrick, both a local couple. And Cherly struggles with Lyme’s Disease. She found out about I guess 5 years ago she had said, I’d have to look at the number again, but very, very debilitating disease. It has caused her to not be able to work and she’s young, she’s in her 30’s. Insurance doesn’t want to help pay for anymore because now they’re on alternative treatments, and so we said – and she’s always been very active in helping other people, as well as Patrick. And we thought well, after reading their story, we really wanted to help give them a beautiful wedding.
So that’s when we all decided, came together, had a meeting with Cherly. She was crying, she was just over the moon; Patrick was just shaking our hands, thanking us. Everybody was so happy – we just, really, again we feel blessed as local businesses to be a part of this and give back to them.
Clif: Alright, so before we go any further, let’s go ahead and talk about all the vendors that are involved with the project this year. So we’ve got Val and Brian Mayer of Remax One. Val is our organizer and her husband Brian is giving the honeymoon suite. We’ve also got Danny Douglas of Danny Douglas Photography. Heather Martins, of Martin’s Fine Jewelry, providing the rings. Maryland Country Caterers is providing the food. Crow Entertainment is providing the DJ service. Luxe Salon is providing hair services. Cindy Selby of Blondie’s Baking is giving the cake. Victoria Ronin, of Natural Looks by Victoria is doing the makeup. Aut & Connie Fuller of Floral Expressions are doing the flowers. Mike Hill of Legacy Limousine is giving them the limo and Smile & Click Photo Booth is providing a photo booth, and that’s a subdivision of Crow Entertainment.
Alright, so now we’re gonna have each of the different people here in the studio, just to say a little bit about what they’re giving. First up, we got Brian Mayer.
Brian: So when Valerie got involved with this last year, all the major things had been taken, so I was asking what it is that I can do to help contribute and they needed a honeymoon suite, so I was happy to donate that.
Clif: Alright, so Brian, tell us a little bit more about that honeymoon suite.
Brian: So they have a waterfront suite at the Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa?/
Val: Well, Brian, let’s be a little more… What he’s trying to say is he got them a beautiful, he reserved them a beautiful room at the Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa?, which is on the water. Fireplace, just a gorgeous place to stay and he really wanted to give them something nice, for the honeymoon. We hope you enjoy it Cheryl, I’m sure you will – it’s just a gorgeous, beautiful place. Given the chance, go over there yourself and stay.
Clif: Sounds amazing! Thanks so much, Brian. Alright, so Crow Entertainment, tell us what you’re providing.
CJ: So this is our second year, providing your services for the community wedding. Last year, the DJ was Ryan, this year, the DJ is going to be Ricky. I’m CJ, so I’m here on behalf of Ricky. Ricky is a busy guy right now, he’s going to Taltson and DJ-ing for us on the weekends. So unfortunately he couldn’t be here, but we know Ricky is going to do a great job for the wedding. He actually met with Cherly last night and they got some details worked out, so we are providing a DJ, we’re providing lighting and Donald’s gonna talk more about the photo booth that we’re providing.
Donald: Every time that we have a photo booth at an event, it’s always a great experience. Everybody always has a great time, putting on hats, the boas, the sunglasses – and once they get the picture from the photo booth, the smile on their faces really says it all.
Clif: Alright Danny, so tell us a little bit about the photo services.
Danny: Well, we’re providing a full wedding package for the bride and groom. We offered them up an engagement session which didn’t take place due to weather, this winter was horrible. So we’re anticipating this wedding to be a wonderful event. We will photograph them getting ready, all the way through the reception. So we’re going to provide Cherly and Patrick with a full disk of all the images we take, so they can then create their own albums and memories from their wedding.
Val: That’s so awesome – it’s such a blessing that you’re doing such an awesome job, thanks Danny.
Clif: Alright – so a special guest just dropped by!
Val: This is Cherly Holiday and she is the bride of this fantastic community wedding. Patrick cannot be here, so she is going to talk a little bit about it. But I wanted to say first on behalf of myself and Brian and all of us, all the local business – we’re doing this because you are such a wonderful person, and so is Patrick, and you’re so deserving of this. And you’re always giving to others, Cherly, and you always have. And you’ve been a big advocate for others with Lyme’s, and I know you’ll talk a little bit about that. But we just want to say that we feel blessed to be a part of this with you and we’re just so thankful that you allowed us the opportunity to do so. So with that, congratulations and we’re looking forward to this, all of us are.
Cherly: Hi, I’m Cherly Holiday, I’m the bride to be. I’d like to thank everybody on behalf of Patrick and I for this beautiful day that everybody’s preparing. We’ve waited 10 years to get married due to my Lyme disease and all the issues that come along with that. We feel amazingly blessed and honored by all the generosity of everybody, all the vendors and all the friends and family as well that have supposed us over the years. We really – I don’t know if we could’ve made it through without you guys. Everybody is just going above and beyond to make our day special and I really don’t even have words to describe all the gratitude that we feel in our hearts for everybody. So I just want to thank everybody from the bottom of my heart. We feel so blessed to have this beautiful wedding.
Clif: Cherly, on behalf of YourCalvert and the rest of the small businesses involved, we truly appreciate the opportunity that you’ve allowed us to share in your special day. And since you’re here today, Cherly, I know you did want to talk a little bit about Lyme’s disease, so let’s transition over to that. So take a few minutes just to tell us a little bit about it. Maybe some of the symptoms or maybe even some ways that people could possibly prevent it or minimize its effects.
Cherly: May is actually Lyme’s disease awareness month. Many people aren’t aware that Lyme disease is an epidemic. There’s hundreds of thousands of people that are diagnosed every year, and many more that go undiagnosed and suffer in silence.
It’s not just ticks that can spread Lyme’s disease. Especially a lot of people think that it’s just ear ticks – it’s actually all ticks. And there’s been research that shows that mosquitoes and fleas can pass it as well. There’s also other tick-borne infections that you can also get from a tick, such as Babesiosis, Bartonella or Anaplasmosis, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever – the list goes on and on. So it’s very important that you check yourself for ticks, that you check your family for ticks, that you are absolutely sure, that you come in from outside, you don’t have to be in the woods, you can just be in your yard, that you check very thoroughly. It’s definitely a disease where an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
There’s so many symptoms. There’s obviously flu-like symptoms. I think that’s very common knowledge. There’s also a lot of neurologic symptoms. It’s a systemic disease, so it can affect every organ in your body and cause all kinds of complications that runs your immune system in the ground so that you’re open to catch a lot of other bacterial and viral infections.
When you check yourself, it’s kind of a misnomer that many think that you get a bull’s eye rash. Actually only 20% of people get a bull’s eye rash. Many get another rash that can take many forms and there’s also many that don’t get any rash at all.
Val: And you’ve experienced a lot of these symptoms?
Cherly: There’s actually three stages of Lyme’s disease. The first one is immediately if you catch the infection early, it’s very easily treated with 4-6 weeks of Doxycycline. As the disease progresses, you go into the second stage where you experience more systemic issues, but is also fairly, in the grand scheme of things, easily treated if you’re treated by a Lyme-literate doctor. As the disease progresses even further, it turns into chronic Lyme’s disease, which is what I have. In that scenario, you never get rid of it. It’s very hard to treat. Many have to do IV antibiotics and the treatment can go on for years. I was actually diagnosed in 2007, so it’s coming up on 8 years since I’ve been diagnosed.
But they actually believe that I caught the infection in 1998 or 1999 when I had a tick bite, and it can lay dormant in your system for up to 15 years or more. So that’s what happened with me. The length of time attached of the tick really doesn’t matter a whole lot. I know a lot of people think that it has to be attached for 48 hours – that’s actually a wives’ tale. They can spread disease within a few hours. It’s very important when you go to remove a tick, if you’re going to use tweezers, be sure to pull it at the head. You don’t want to squeeze it at the body, because that will squeeze more of the infection or infections into you.
It’s very important that if you think you might have Lyme’s Disease to go to a doctor who is very familiar with the disease. There’s many Lyme-literate doctors that are experts in the field, however most mainstream doctors aren’t overly-education on the disease and may not be able to provide the help that you actually need.
Val: Well, with that Cherly, we just want to say that we know you’ve been through a lot with this Lyme disease, and that was one of the biggest reasons… we know you’ve struggled so much with health and not even being able to work for periods of time, being so sick. And still giving to others in your community while going through that, and that’s one of the biggest reasons we wanted to give back to you and Patrick, because he’s been there with you, by your side through this whole ordeal. And so we want to say: Thank you so much for bringing light to this awful situation and disease, because there are so many people who do have it, who don’t know about it and aren’t knowledgeable. So we just want to say thank you for letting us be a part of it, thank you for educating us on the situation.
On a more positive, happier note, we are just so very thankful for you and Patrick, being the people you are, for being advocates for other people and for allowing us to be a part of your very special day. We so look forward to making your day the most special it can be, with all the services we can provide as local businesses here in Southern Maryland. Thank you and we love you, and thank you Clif Bridegum of YourCalvert for allowing us the opportunity and giving us the platform to get Cherly’s diagnose of Lyme disease out and the local businesses here in Southern Maryland. Thank you so much!
Cherly: And I also wanted to thank you, Val, so much for coordinating all of this. You’re such a blessing to so many people. You go above and beyond for so many and give back to the community and those that you know constantly. You’re one of the most loyal, beautiful people that I know and I can’t express my love and gratitude for everything that you’re doing – you’re the greatest!
Val: Thank you very much.
Clif: Thanks so much! And I’ll just go through and read those vendors names one more time, just so everybody’s familiar with them. So Danny Douglas Photography; Heather Martins, of Martin’s Fine Jewelry; Maryland Country Caterers, Crow Entertainment, Blondie’s Bakery, Natural Looks by Victoria, Floral Expressions, Val and Brian Mayer or Remax One, Legacy Limousine, Smile & Click Photo Booth, and last, but not least, Luxe Salon.
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