Gina Dean, Couture Floral & Rentals...

A wedding is about people starting out their future together; for an anniversary, it’s celebrating the life they’ve spent together. Everything should be special to the couple. For my grandparents’ 70th anniversary, I made the centerpieces out of all my grandmother’s favorite flowers and colors.

Lots of times, the children want the party to be a surprise. I think you should have the couple’s input— they’ll have a better time if they can pick the guest list and the types of food they want served. Still, some things can be a surprise. You can have all the children show up at their house and take them in a limousine to the country club, or put together a slide show of pictures.

Mike Orlando, Orlando’s Catering...

We have a lot of 50th anniversaries, and gold is the traditional color for 50. Get a cake in gold leaf and gold balloons, along with your own little touches.

Most of our clients aren’t too concerned with having a huge event; it’s more important to have all the people they want there. Have a table with memorabilia, like the cake-topper from the wedding and important photos.

Mary Weber, Clarion Brass...

If you’re looking for a band, ask questions—What styles of repertoire can they play? What about pricing? See if they have a demo or press kit. That will give you a good judgment of their quality level.

If you have a special song you want played, find out if it’s been arranged. If not, some groups will offer to make an arrangement for you.

Amanda Bradham-Little, Hyatt Regency St. Louis at The Arch...

Custom containers are a fun, inexpensive and unique way to continue your anniversary theme throughout the party. All it requires is stickers you can print at home or have a local stationer create.

Balloons make me happy. Who says they’re old-fashioned? They dance, they add an unexpected whimsy and bursts of color. The trick is to do it in large volume—one or two is nice but hundreds are better!