Recommended by 100%
Lew · Married on 07/15/2017
Joan was absolutely a treat to work with as we planned a 60th birthday party for 150 guests in our backyard. From the first meeting, when we talked concepts, to the day after the party, when she returned to our property to make sure it was returned to pristine condition, Joan was extremely professional and focused on making sure that this would be a first class event. She helped us with th logistics of what ended up being three live bands, staging, tents, catering, alcohol, parking, bathrooms, invites, cake, and all the small things that make an event special.Sent on 08/10/2017
Leading up to the event Joan came over every few weeks to provide us with progress reports and ask questions to make sure the event was being planned to our specifications. We never had to worry that she did not understand what we wanted and she delivered everything she promised.
On the days just before the event, Joan went through all of the details and logistics. All of this detailed prep was apparent during the event itself. We stayed on schedule; our guests had a blast and we were able to enjoy the party ourselves without having to worry about anything.
First class all the way! Worth every penny and more! We would not hesitate to recommend Joan to anyone planning a party for any occasion. Thank you Joan and the entire crew at First Impressions!
Cheryl · Married on 06/17/2017
We were married this past Saturday(June 17th) in our backyard. Throwing a huge event at your home can be daunting. Joan is detail oriented, professional & knows the best vendors. We did not want a formal sit down dinner or a buffet. My husband is a foodie and wanted the best of the best. We gave her a vision and she implemented it beyond our expectations. Friends and family kept stating you must be so busy with planning and I can honestly say, no, Joan is handling it all. The only thing we had to do was say yes or no to suggestions. I had issues with my dress and Joan was right there with me talking to the store, providing moral support and suggestions.Sent on 06/19/2017
I am extremely particular about service. All the vendors she suggested were amazingly caring, professional and wanted us to have the most beautiful day. Everything was done for the wedding months before. Wedding day was stress free, honestly and truly. I was not nervous or concerned about anything except the weather and Joan had a contingency plan for that. This was not an easy wedding to plan, the way we wanted the food, the music and we could not fit inside the house, so it all had to be done outside.
She turned our backyard into a fairytale wedding. Even the tent company was impressed. The night was not a typical boring wedding. We danced and ate throughout the evening. Different stations of food opened throughout the evening which created a fun atmosphere and nobody wanted to go home. To say that the night was perfect is an understatement. It was magical, perfect, professional, touching and beautiful. All Joan! Our guests all said this was the best wedding they have ever been to in their lives (and we are not a young crowd). If you have Joan as your event planner you will have a stress free event, professionally and beautifully handled (just let her take the lead). I cannot recommend her enough. From the bottom of we cannot thank Joan enough for this beautiful evening.
Julian · Married on 09/24/2016
Joan and her team at First Impressions were extremely helpful for us planning our wedding. We had a 150 person backyard wedding where we had to do a lot of work on our own. There is no way we could have pulled it off without Joan. She has a vast amount of experience and is completely professional in her work. She was able to adapt to the specific needs of our wedding and offer ideas and insights as well as make us aware of things we had not thought of that were vital to an outdoor backyard DIY wedding. We really felt that Joan and her team went above and beyond what was expected. They also expected the unexpected and put out fires before they became problems. We highly recommend Joan and first impressions.Sent on 10/31/2016
alexandra · Married on 08/20/2016
Joan and the First Impressions team went above and beyond to make our wedding nothing short of spectacular. There were several moving parts to our 250-person uptown Kingston affair, and we could not have done it without First Impressions. From contract agreements, to meetings, rentals deliveries, site layouts, day-of site set-up, parking, event timing and event breakdown, etc. First Impressions worked tirelessly to ensure our entire wedding weekend went off without a hitch. I would highly recommend their services for a tasteful, fabulous, and well executed event! Thank you, Joan!!Sent on 10/20/2016
Maria · Married on 06/20/2015
Don't have your wedding in Hudson Valley without Joan!Sent on 06/28/2015
She made our special day simply a huge success. Joan knows all the local vendors, from caterers, portable toilets and party rentals to a country dancing caller. We had tastings with a few different caterers, all CIA trained, before deciding on one. Joan is extremely responsive and available. Very knowledgeable with answers to all your questions even the ones you haven't thought about.
We can't recommend her enough!
HILARY · Married on 05/30/2015
Amazing. Joan is a professional, thorough and consummate wedding planner. She produced our wedding with minimal work, stress or worry required on our part.Sent on 08/30/2015
She went well beyond planning for us and worked with us to put together a very good and reliable team of service providers (florist, caterer, DJ, etc). She gave us lots of choices for each, and we were very happy with the ones we chose. As soon as we made the choice, Joan handled it from there, and we did little to no work after that point. It was very helpful given that my fiancé (now wife) was in business school so we had limited time between us.
Our limited time situation was no issue for Joan - as she has lots of experience, and in her past life was a travel coordinator and event planner for a famous band I believe. She often worked ahead of us, checked in for approval at every point, and urged us to make decisions or the fun parts of planning -- the tasting, music selection, flowers, etc.
She also helped us with etiquette and little tips for save the dates, seating etc. There are always awkward family issues / moments that come up during the planning process and Joan was the perfect arbiter. It was helpful at times to have her be the sensible one "in the family".
She is as hands-off or involved as you want her to be, but as we worked with her for the year up to our wedding, we grew to trust Joan and her husband, Bruce very much.
In summary, we had two weddings with two separate planners and the one Joan planned was far smoother and more pleasant. I recommend Joan whole-heartedly!
Beth · Married on 09/13/2014
Joan Howe is marvelous! I found her randomly online and it was as if we were meant to meet. I had been having some issues coordinating with management of my (out-of-the-box and rather green) venue and decided it was time to hire a day-of coordinator to help ensure everything on the big day ran smoothly. It turned out, that Joan was already planning a wedding there and had exactly the knowledge and experience I was looking for.Sent on 10/02/2014
Joan is professional, patient, organized and kind. She and her team are all pro. Joan continually called to check in on me in the weeks leading up to the wedding (which was above and beyond her responsibilities). On the big day Joan and her team arrived at our venue early, listened carefully to our instructions, and immediately went to work. I honestly attribute the beauty and serenity of our day to them. It POURED rain the entire day and Joan was able to adjust and accommodate our 94 guests with grace and ease (or at least she made it look that way!)
I didn’t lift a finger at my wedding and was able to relax and enjoy every second of the day thanks to Joan and her team! I highly recommend First Impressions without hesitation. Wonderful people, wonderful service, wonderful wedding!
Abby · Married on 06/14/2014
We had a complete DIY wedding, and we could not have gotten through it without the help of Joan from First Impressions Event Planners. We hired her as a day-of wedding coordinator and she went above and beyond her responsibilities. Joan, Bruce and Janet helped to make our wedding weekend the spectacular event that it was! Specifically Joan was a calm presence both in the weeks leading up to the wedding and on our special day. I would highly recommend her to anyone in the Hudson Valley region looking for a wedding planner, she was the best!Sent on 07/14/2014
User3796524 · 2+ years ago
Joan never disappoints.She knows all the best venues, caterers and bands, lighting and tents, and will not fail to berate a wonderful, memorable wedding or other occasion for you. From Bermuda to local barns her weddings are amazing. I was just at a wedding in Bermuda that she designed and organized, long distance no less, and it was just fantastic. everyone was talking about how great everything was. She made sure the guests had anything they could possibly want .the setting was breath taking, the ceremony was flawless. She had a great local band for rehearsal dinner and a bar blue which was great, fantastic table settings for the wedding and she planned a phenomenal brunchSent on 01/08/2014
Janet · Married on 11/09/2013
Whether you’re planning a wedding in your home town or a destination wedding in a far off place, First Impressions is the only way to go. My daughter’s wedding (November 2013) was held at Elbow Beach Resort in Bermuda, and Joan’s expertise truly made our three day event one that we will never forget. She was able to make our vision a reality and far exceed our expectations. With only five months to plan three separate events for 100 guests, Joan quickly arranged meetings in Bermuda with all essential vendors and negotiated contracts effortlessly. She was able to alleviate every bit of stress we anticipated and create a flawless wedding experience for our guests and ourselves. Because of Joan’s broad-based knowledge and attention to detail, she easily resolved any last minute problems as if she possessed a magic wand. Throughout the entire process, she was always available to answer our questions, no matter how trivial. Joan, simply put, was an absolute joy to work with, a true miracle worker in every way. My daughter’s wedding can only be described as a fairy tale, and every guest raved that it was the best wedding weekend ever! I will be forever grateful to Joan for giving my daughter and son-in-law the wedding of their dreams! Thank you, Joan.Sent on 01/03/2014
Alana · Married on 11/01/2013
Words cannot describe how pleased I am with Joan and First Impressions. Joan is extremely organized, creative and responsible. She always came on time with a smile on her face, someone to help ease my stress. My guests are still commenting on how smooth our wedding went, and we could not have done it without Joan. I would honestly recommend her to all friends and family without hesitation.Sent on 04/07/2014
Some of my favorite things about Joan:
Very receptive to my ideas and needs;
She never missed a phone call;
Stayed overnight at our venue the night before; and
Great taste in music!
User3883994 · 2+ years ago
caring,professional and reassuring.she is very patient and takes pride in providing excellent service and charges a fair priceSent on 02/06/2014
Zac · Married on 09/01/2013
As anyone either looking to plan a reasonably large (~150 people) wedding can attest, there is a massive amount of planning that needs to be done. When you, as a couple, decide to do all of the things that make your wedding as complicated as possible, such as: choose a beautiful outdoor venue that has no on-site facilities, at all, on a weekend that plays host to many other weddings in the area, you sign yourselves up for a logistical challenge of epic proportions. As me and my wife realized what we had done, and started talking to our parents about their thoughts, and then dealt with the fallout that accompanies such discussions, we made the best decision of our relationship following our engagement and hired Joan Howe to be our wedding planner.Sent on 02/02/2014
Joan is truly a pleasure to work with. She was very responsive, got us in touch with basically all of our (really excellent!) vendors, worked on getting the very best prices that we could, and even went above and beyond and helped the mother of the groom plan the rehearsal dinner. She expertly handled all of the vendor relationships, and kept us in the loop as the day of the wedding approached. She also coordinated the day of the event, and kept everything running smoothly - the entire reception was a well-oiled machine as the vendors worked especially well with her and with each other.
For anyone looking to have a wedding in the Hudson Valley (or pretty much anywhere Joan is willing to go) we highly recommend her as a professional, expert, and wonderful wedding planner.
Caroline · Married on 08/31/2013
Joan of First Impressions Event Planners of the Hudson Valley was terrific. As mother of the groom, I was responsible for the Rehearsal Dinner. MOST valuable of all the excellent things that Joan did was to connect me with reliable vendors who provided high quality service, and who were in my budget range -- and then to take charge of just as much of the interaction with the vendor as I needed her to do. She managed ALL the interaction with the tent-chairs-table-place settings company, on the one hand, but since the proprietress of the venue and I communicated easily and well, she left us alone to deal with each other directly. The others were in between. I really valued highly her ability to know when to step forward and when to step back.Sent on 01/13/2014
Joan was always available, always cheerful, flexible, and extremely well organized. On the day, and on the follow-up, clean-up days, Joan made sure that everything happened that was supposed to happen, when it was supposed to happen, so that I could relax and enjoy the occasion. And what a great occasion it was!
Felicia · Married on 08/10/2013
I don't think I could ever say enough wonderful things about Joan. Out of everyone that we engaged for our wedding weekend, Joan by far and away was the best person we worked with. She was honest, patient, always available, timely, engaged, and went out of her way time and time again to make our day special. I am a tough customer, and I can honestly say there isn't one thing I would have changed about the service we got from Joan. On top of her professionalism, she is a wonderful person. We actually keep in touch and I know we will for a long time! There is no one I would recommend more out of everyone we worked with for our wedding. You will not be disappointed with her, this should be the easiest decision you have to make!!Sent on 01/20/2014
Bernadette · Married on 06/22/2013
Initially my daughter and I did not think we would benefit from the services of a wedding planner however because the wedding was a distance from our home, we engaged Joan Howe of First impressions 'just in case'.Sent on 01/24/2014
Joan was so helpful throughout the planning as well as the wedding itself.
She connected us with an array of vendors, guided us through the contracting process, was always considerate of our budget and generally made the planning process painless as well as fun! Joan kept us on target with timelines and reminded us of small details we might otherwise have overlooked.
On the day of our wedding, she made sure everything ran smoothly. At all times, she was professional not only with us but she kept the numerous vendors on track as well.