Whether it’s for economic reasons or the desire for a more unique or intimate setting, choosing to host your wedding at your home or that of a close relative or friend, or in an outdoor setting adds a warm, personal touch to your celebration.
Start planning early. Take into consideration the actual wedding ceremony site, will it be indoors and where, or outdoors? Consider your needs for handling food, restroom facilities, the ceremony itself, and any special guest accommodations required. Don’t forget about insects! You may need to arrange a commercial spraying for insects a few hours before your guests arrive. And, check with your bridal party and close family to see if they have any allergies related to the outdoors or the season,as this will influence your choices.
If you are searching for a suitable location outdoors in your area, check to see what permits might be necessary. These might include usage, barbecuing or cooking facilities, parking, clean-up deposits or noise. And, if you are choosing your home or a friend or family member’s home, check about noise permits, too, if you plan to have a band or DJ. Sometimes, if you are anticipating a significant increase in traffic flow or parked vehicles, it’s a good idea to also notify the local law enforcement so there won’t be any surprises and they are aware of the situation. And, it helps if you invite the surrounding neighbors, since there will be an increase in noise and congestion. Better to have them join in the fun, than sit home and grumble.
Does the site have adequate parking available? Is it easy to find? Plan to include both written directions and a map with your invitations. Make sure all the businesses you have contracts with to provide services have the directions and the map for all their staff. Double check this a day or two before the wedding, and make sure in the contracts sufficient set-up time schedules and such are specified.
Remember, no one can control Mother Nature and no matter where you plan to have your wedding, indoors, outdoors, a traditional church, or unconventional setting, the weather may not cooperate. It’s always a good idea to have a back up plan or location. And umbrellas and escorts ready.
The site, choice of attire, time of day, and type of menu and entertain should determine the degree of formality. Your dreams and memories determine the rest!