Monday, June 5, 2017

Conversation with Ronald Hunt / Blessings Ceremony Space

Blessings Ceremony Space 

Congratulations to our dear colleague and faculty member, Ronald Hunt! Ron has started a new wonderful venture called “Blessing Ceremony Space." It is a very interesting concept, and this is what he's shared with us.

Tell us a little bit more about Blessings Ceremony Space.Blessings Space is 800 square feet, in several rooms. There is room for Weddings and Memorial Services for up to 25 people. The goal; of course is to do Ceremonies across the life Cycle, and allow other community related functions to use the space. I have been approached by a drum circle, and they are going to use the space once a month. There are going to be Reiki courses, once I am certified as a Reiki Master, in September.
What ignited the spark in you to start a new business venture?
I started doing elopements, at my house, about two years ago. I have a lovely wedding site there, but being the greater North East (NY), weather gets unpredictable come late fall. Last November, I booked an elopement for 6, and 16 showed up, and Bride and Groom did not tell their relatives that it was outside, even though we were walking around the fire pit...They were still thrilled, but it felt bad, to be criticized for the weather! I also wanted a dedicated place, for interviews, where I had all my tools handy, and could demonstrate a ritual or two.
Why is your business located at this site?
I picked my location, based on the following factors: it is across the street from City Hall, where I get tons of referrals. There are several parking lots within a city block. A brand new casino was scheduled to open nearby, with 800,000 unique visitors projected..
How did you get the background and skills necessary to run this type of business?
I have had several business' over the years, so I was not concerned with starting a new one. I would advice everyone, to have an awesome partner, lawyer and accountant. I actually enjoy reading contracts and leases, and crossing out paragraphs. Don't ever sign anything that you do not read and agree to.
What three pieces of advice would you give a Celebrant who might like to start this type of business?
If I could offer some advice to other Celebrant's who might like to start this type of business? Have a plan and a budget, but be ready to have flexibility with it. Write everything down, in a journal or post-its. Many times you will have to follow up with someone who promised you supplies, or a referral, but has not followed through. Walk up and down the block, introducing yourself to other business owners, and talk joint ventures. If nothing else, they will take your advertising, and you have gotten some word out. Send out a press release, and try to post to social media on a regular basis.
What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful Celebrant?
I think that the skills we have developed as Life Cycle Celebrants' serve us well. The ability to tell our story, quickly and professionally. Showing up to meetings several minutes early...
What motivates you?
I set goals for myself, in life and in business. My initial goal was to pay the rent, and I did that the first month. so, I expanded, to the empty suite next office over. My goal is to build the business incrementally, until I am ready to retire, and then have an opportunity to cut back, by taking on a partner.
Who or what has been your greatest inspiration?
That I count two of the original CF&I graduates as friends, mentors, and inspiration, with so many Celebrants, with so many awesome ideas; there is no limit to the possibilities that I can test, in my space.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
I maintain and renovate real estate, which has helped me design and build my office. I enjoy going to the gym regularly, and try to meditate on a daily basis. I wish I spent more time on my bright red motorcycle, and now that the weather is nice, there are always peonies and iris' to transplant.
What makes you happy?
My work brings me a lot of joy, but I have gotten old enough, and wise enough, that I get a lot of satisfaction by helping friends, relatives, and students, become their best selves.
I think, in a parallel universe, I am a Life Coach...
If you were conducting this interview, what other question might you ask that could help shed some light on you, celebrancy, and/or Blessings Ceremony Space?
This is really quite the adventure, and I have not mastered my marketing plan just yet. #twitterilliterate...
Thanks so much, Ron. And way to go! You are an inspiration.
BLESSINGS CEREMONIAL SPACE 
34 JAY ST.
SCHENECTADY NY 12305 
Contact: Ronald Hunt  518-587-1468
CapitalRegionCeremonies.net Ronald J Hunt, Life-Cycle Celebrant, 
and teacher for: Celebrant Foundation & Institute. Studied Weddings 
Funerals at Celebrant Foundation & InstituteOwner-operator at Blessings Ceremony Space and Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant at Hand Written Weddings              HTTP://www.CapitalRegionCeremonies.net/







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