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The list goes on and on with broken promises and things that weren't as agreed upon, but the real issue is we've been waiting almost two months for refunds and our sand ceremony replacement and haven't received a thing. Joanne is completely unorganized and doesn't communicate with you until you force her to. If you think you're her only wedding that day, you're wrong. Her assistants told us she had two on our wedding day, which was why they didn't know what flowers to bring us and why Joanne didn't stay for the day as we paid her to do. It's pointless to try to reason with her about what went wrong because she's completely unable to admit where she went wrong, going so far to take one of the 30 chairs, that we PAID FOR, from our family and for herself. No flowers as decoration since she decided to replace those with paper. No cake for us to cut because apparently they forgot it. The sand ceremony holder leaked at the ceremony, we were promised a replacement and have received nothing. The cakes that were favors were not the right flavor so my vegan best friend couldn't have any. The music was a wreck and ruined my dances with not only my husband, but also my two fathers. I've given up trying to talk to her since she is obviously not going to do as she said she'd do, which should not surprise me one bit. I'd stay as far away from her and this sham of a wedding coordinator as you could.
Joanne and I initially worked out the wedding details out over the phone, by email, and in her Planning Pod site. She requested an in-person meeting. After a 3 hr. trip just for the meeting, Joanne was over 30 minutes late and completely unprepared. I just rehashed things WE’D ALREADY DISCUSSED!
Joanne recommended Edie as the officiant (I later discovered she’s Joanne's mom!) Edie seemed nice on the phone, and we worked out the rehearsal and ceremony details.
She’d periodically ask me questions like, "What time is the ceremony?," and "Where’s the ceremony taking place?." We had discussed these CRITICAL details REPEATEDLY! I spoke with her on the phone days before the rehearsal and confirmed the rehearsal details.
JOANNE WAS AN HOUR LATE AND EDIE NEVER SHOWED FOR THE REHEARSAL! Possible storms were forecasted the next day. Joanne said it would be fine if there was no lightning while the reception tent was set up. She said the beach ceremony and bonfire would happen, but the reception may need to be moved.
After 12pm on the wedding day, Joanne called and said the tent couldn't be set up due to damp sand and winds. She’d NEVER mentioned that risk! Luckily, we had a great backup venue nearby. Somehow the promise of a beach ceremony "no matter what" disappeared and the ceremony was moved too. She called my fiancee to ASK HOW MANY GUESTS WE HAD! He said he was at the new venue and they could discuss in person. She said she was 30 MINS AWAY!
At the ceremony, my sister notified me that the officiant hadn't arrived, and no one knew where she was. Edie FINALLY showed up 45+ MINS LATE! When I arrived, JOANNE WASN’T THERE, just an assistant! There was NO CEREMONY MUSIC and NO ARCH! Edie stumbled over the vows and CALLED ME THE WRONG NAME!
Joanne showed up briefly during the reception to say she owed me a bonfire sometime. I still thought we’d have the bonfire afterwards!
Thankfully I had wedding insurance! Save yourself the hassle and don’t hire Joanne!
The weather forecast predicted a storm on my wedding day.It did not storm before or during my wedding. It did sprinkle off and on but nothing heavy.JoAnne called me the day before and told me the rental co. may not be able to deliver chairs, even though we already paid for them. She never got back to us to let us know if we would have chairs. I did not know until I walked down the aisle that we had chairs.I paid $475 for the "Shelly" arch.A nice driftwood arch with burlap and starfish etc.I received a wrought iron arch with wood slapped on it.At my wedding I saw people sitting in their cars by our aisle.As we are taking pictures after the ceremony I see a bride walking up, and I see her wedding party frantic.We overheard that they were supposed to be at a different mile marker on the beach and all of her guests were waiting to find out where to go.I could not get the rest of my ceremony pictures because her family was in the background!JoAnne began setting up other decorations and started to put burlap on my arch.My sister confused, asked her if there was another wedding.She lied to her and told her no.One of my guests was standing in front of the arch visiting and JoAnne told him he needed to move. I had to pay for the beach permit for that location. The City said that I was the only bride with that spot.She should have asked me if I was okay with her doing that.I might have been if I could have prepared for it and taken my pictures earlier.Another issue I had was that I paid full price for these chairs and the arch but another bride was using them as well.The rental company would not drop the chairs and JoAnne used her own.This confused me because she previously told us she did not have enough of her own. She made double her money that day from two brides. Lastly, our bartender who I had spoken to weeks prior to the wedding was not at our reception.The new bartender did not know any of our drinks.He was slow, and on his phone.It turns out he was JoAnne's husband.
Horrible! Do not book this company. I feel for you brides out there that had a bad experience. We had a bonfire with a catered meal set up for a group of pilots that flew into Port Aransas for the first time. The event was to take place on Saturday at 7pm. It was raining the day before, so Joanne said she would call me at 2pm that day to touch base. It did not rain all day. She did not call, so I texted her at 230pm and said weather is great**see you at 7pm. At 5pm we went down to the beach to see how the set up was going. No one was there. 600pm**no one there**630pm we started hunting Joanne down on the beach. She was at wedding, which the family was upset with her, since she had set up late. By that time it was time for our bonfire to start**we had no bonfire set up and we had no food. We had 25 people at our house wondering what was going on. Joanne said I called called her that morning and cancelled**I did not**why would I cancel. If the weddings were still going on*** why on earth would I cancel the bonfire. I tried calling her several times throughout the day and she said she lost her phone. Really?? She said she would set it up them **but by the time she had it set up it would be 9pm. She said she would give us a full refund**not willingly. IF you decide to book with her**which I wouldn't**pay with credit card. The only way we got our money back was disputing it with American Express. Very embarrassing!
I wanted an easy, no frills, no stress wedding on the beach and so I contacted Joanne Soward, Port Aransas Beach weddings, she was a little difficult to reach but we ended up working out the details and even drove 6 hrs to meet w/her. My family had to travel 2000 miles to be with me. The Friday before the wedding I contacted Joanne about the decorations and the rehearsal; she told me she would be there by 6:30pm she did not show until around 7:30. It has been raining that day so the beach was a little soggy. On Saturday, September 21st it did not rain all day long. I texted Joanne that I wanted the wedding on the beach at the markers we had decided on 23-24. She said ok. At 2 pm the flowers arrived, nothing at all like I had ordered and there wasn’t even enough lapels or corsages. All the flowers looked like they had been sitting in the heat for a while and were all very wilted, Joanne was notified of this and stated that she was rushing new flowers over, they never showed up. My Aunts had to go buy fake flowers for my guys to wear as lapels and my mother, mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law had nothing!
At 5pm I went to my condo with my bridesmaids to get ready for the ceremony which was set for 6:30. At 5:35 I texted Joanne asking what time do us girls need to be down at the beach, she responded “6:55. Having to redo set up, it flooded. Gonna need 15 more min.” I said ok. That is the last communication I had w/Joanne. We ended up having to wait to use another bride’s arch/décor at mile marker 7, (I later contacted Port Aransas City Hall and found out that Joanne never even got a permit for our wedding). WE HAD NO PHOTOGRAPHER! Joanne abandoned us on our wedding day with no intention of contacting us or executing our wedding. It was completely up to our family to make it happen. We paid for a stress-free wedding and got exactly the opposite. She did not take the responsibility for failing to uphold the contract.
This company was absolutely horrible. Joanne was nice at first but then completely quit answering my phone calls after I made the deposit to her and the caterer she recommended. She then forgot to book the reception and it was not available on my date. She kept suggesting other places that I did not want to use, I am guessing she gets a kick back from them. She finally quit on ME and never returned my deposit. She was TERRIBLE!
I contacted Joanne Soward of Port A Weddings in April 2013 to plan our wedding in August of 2013. I went over every detail. The Intimate Beach Wedding , Bonfire, and wedding cake. Every detail of the wedding was set out in the contract including set up for the ceremony, sand ceremony, What we wanted for a guitarist, song, flowers, dinner, food to be served at the bon fire, table decor, colors. All one had to do was look at her written contract and see what was expected.
Come our wedding day nothing went per the written plan. Ceremony set up and decor was all wrong. Family members were sent scurrying to find the proper flowers,bouquets, and decor. One of our kids was provided with the wrong color sand, we were not given enough sand to fill the jar and no lid was provided for the jar. We were to be provided with information on the guitarist upon receipt of our deposit, but did not receive the information until the night before the wedding. He was able to play one song that we had requested and played it over and over. For the reception we had ordered bbq brisket and fire roasted vegetables. We were given bbq brisket and baked beans served on red foam plates . For the bon fire we had ordered chicken kabobs. These were never provided. When we expressed our disapproval of the food Joanne told the caterer, "Just pack it all up and we'll give them a refund". She thought that it would be okay for our family and friends to go hungry. The caterer later told us that the food had been ordered two days prior to the wedding and that he was not the caterer that she used for bbq. When I went to look at the cake I found only serving utensils. NO CAKE HAD EVER BEEN ORDERED! We ended up with a store bought cake that my daughter went and purchased. I did not get the wedding that I had planned and looked forward to. She had our money, set up what she wanted, and made our special day a disaster. My only recommendation. Do not not use Port A Weddings!
Joanne, Edie, and our photographer were wonderful. I was very stressed a couple days before the wedding, but after my face to face (with champagne) :) I felt so relieved. Joanne, made me feel so comfortable and I knew she would create a beautiful day for Michael and I. Edie worked so hard on the day of the wedding! She was great. Our photographer David (who came with the wedding package) was absolutely amazing! He went above and beyond! Thank you Port A Weddings
Joanne and Edie were a delight to work with!! Every detail was handled and I didnt have to worry about a thing. They NAILED my "vision" all while staying within my budget. I HIGHLY recommend Port Aransas Beach Weddings, especially after being treated unprofessionally and completely ignored by the 1st wedding planner i hired - Brio Beach Weddings. Not only did Joanne make me feel at ease after having a bad experience elsewhere, she went above and beyond to make sure that my day was PERFECT!!
Thank you for your kind words and we are so blessed to have been a part of y'alls dream! Keep in touch and I can't wait to hear all about your family's future! ~ Joanne
Joanne Soward and Port A Weddings
Joanne STOLE $5342.50 from me and my husband. We hired Joanne a year and a month before our wedding. I was told the earlier the better. Me an my husband lived out of state at the time we hired her so wanted to get a jump start. We would be moving to Texas at least 5 moths before the wedding so we could do any hands on stuff with Joanne than. We signed the contract with Joanne January 25th, 2012 for our April 20th, 2013 wedding. We went over the details of the wedding and we both went our ways. We moved to Texas in October of 2012 and had yet to hear anything from Joanne even though she promised to keep in touch. I was not worried at this time because our wedding was going to be simple and she made me think she had it all covered. Once we got to Texas i called Joanne and let her know we finally made the Move to and how was everything coming along. Keep in mind all Joanne had to do for our wedding was, book the venue and set up things on the day of our event. We were making our own center pieces, we made our own aisle decorations and even built and decorated our own arch. We hired our own caterer, and our own DJ/Photographer, she literally had very little to do. After many e-mails and phone calls Joanne finally contacted us and apologized for not getting back to us sooner, she was planning her own wedding. I understood, and was ready to start on my wedding now since she had no other distractions. Joanne called me in the middle of December to inform me of how things were moving along. She informed me that the hall we were to have our reception in was double booked and she would get to the bottom of it because she knows she booked it for us right after we paid her. She explained to me she gave them HALF the deposit and the never cashed her check. CONTINUE ON NEXT REVIEW!!!
you helped make our day extra special and we are so grateful.
I really want to thank you'll for making our kids special day a great event, and one for the memory books. I really was able to enjoy the cermony as you'll took care of it all. Thanks
What a geat job ! thank you so much for making this a great day !
Joanne and her team were absolutely wonderful to work with to create my dream beach wedding! Their experience and professionalism created a beautiful ceremony and reception that was beyond my expectations. I absolutely loved the decor and all of your creativity in putting everything together. Jennifer did an excellent job on my cake and cupcakes, everything was delicious and decorated perfectly. Several of my guests commented that it was the most beautiful wedding they have ever attended!!! My sincere thanks for the precious memories that will last me a lifetime.
Joanne and Jennifer are truly wonderful! We had a beautiful, stress free wedding day and the planning was great too. The best in town for sure!! Love them!
Maybe because I picked the smallest package or because they were too busy... Thoughout the whole process, I had a hard time receiving proper feedback from Joanne and Jennifer. Closer to the date I got very nervous because I hadn't heard from them. Until I wrote Joanne an email expressing my concerns, I wasn't sure we were all on the same page. Both are very nice ladies, however, they got my colors wrong (they had a mint green instead of the turquoise blue I had asked for). Joanne had to conduct the ceremony bc the officiant was stuck in the ferry, and after the ceremony both Joanne and Jennifer disappeared. As a matter of fact, I didn't even get a lid for the jar of the ceremony sand, so for now I have it wrapped in foil. Dave the photographer was great, but until I get my pictures I won't be comfortable.