Vendor Spotlight | Beth with St. Joseph’s Villa
Meet Beth Harper, Wedding Coordinator with St. Joseph’s Villa. Beth has been with St. Joseph’s for over a decade! This charming Romanesque chapel (pictured below) was built in the 1930’s and has hosted weddings large and small. With arched stained glass windows, decorative wall sconces and reserved beauty, it requires little decoration. Scroll to read all about Beth – you’ll adore her just as much as we do!
If you care to share, how did you get to where you are now?
I have been with St. Joseph’s Villa for 14 years. I got into the business because we have a Church on our campus that is available for weddings, and I was tasked with increasing business. One of the first thing I did was to join Richmond Weddings™. (Thanks for the plug Beth! 😜)
What makes you or your business stand out and why should a couple hire you?
We are probably one of the few traditional and non-denominational churches in Richmond available to anyone who wants to do a wedding ceremony. Couples can bring their own officiants, and ceremonies can be anything they want to do! We give them the space, with a few limitations, otherwise, the slate is open! All proceeds from the church rental benefit St. Joseph’s Villa, a nonprofit organization. So many churches today are more modern, and St. Joseph’s Villa looks like a traditional church. With gorgeous stained glass and a long aisle leading to the altar. Since ceremonies are all that we do (no receptions), I make it my mission to give each couple a great experience with a ton of personal service. I meet individually with all the couples, and they have my contact info so they can come back!
What’s your favorite thing about working in the wedding industry?
Seeing so many happy people. Their wedding day is one of the most important days of their lives, and I have a little part of making that happen!
What’s a unique tip you tell your couples?
Hire a coordinator just for your wedding day, at least. Let them worry about deliveries and decorations so you can enjoy your day.
What’s your best piece of advice for couples planning a wedding?
Go to a wedding site like Richmond Weddings™, that gives you the advice, the timelines and helpful blogs. Do your research and go to the Richmond Weddings™ shows! Even though it seems very overwhelming, it’s going to still help you get everything done that you need to get done. That way you won’t forget about something super important like a marriage license!
What’s your favorite moment during a wedding?
When they come out of the church and everyone is they’re doing the bird seed or the bubbles, and the looks on everyone’s faces. It’s magical, you just see so much joy. I think that’s the moment that gets to me, all the smiles on the faces!
How do you de-stress?
I’m a runner, especially in these past two years! I’ve done a couple half marathons and the Monument Avenue 10K at least 15 times! I try to get out at least three times a week.
What’s your favorite food/dish/cuisine?
I love a good burger. Not a fast food burger, but one that’s big and juicy with lots of cheese. One of my favorite places is Marty’s in Mechanicsville.
What would your perfect Saturday be like?
Wake up, go for a run, and drive to Yorktown beach. I love the beach, but I don’t love so much the crowds or big waves. In Yorktown you pretty much have the beach to yourself. You can just get out in the water and float. Plus, you’re close enough to things! Afterwards, I would go back to Williamsburg and get a sandwich from the The Cheese Shop.
What is your favorite season of the year and why?
I love the fall. I’m not a hot weather person, so I love the cooler temperatures. It’s my favorite season to run and I just love looking at the beautiful trees. Plus all the pumpkins and mums, not to mention Christmas is right after the fall!
Do you have a pet?
I have a seven year old beagle named Rocky. He is completely spoiled rotten and would play ball all day if we let him.