Many of us dream of getting married in the great outdoors, but do not fulfil
the dream. It is wrong to think an outdoor wedding is impossible. You just have
to be prepared to put a lot more work into organising the event or hiring
someone to do the planning for you.
Some of the major challenges when it comes to outdoor weddings are the
weather, the location, and equipment.
No matter where you live, there are certain times of the year when it is not
advisable to organise an outdoor wedding. Both cold and extreme heat should be
avoided. You may love blaring sunshine, but you have to consider your guests
too, particularly the elderly who may react badly to heat.
Unfortunately, there is always at least a minor risk of rain and stormy
weather so you should have a back up plan in place.
Generally, spring months and late summer or early autumn are good times to
set aside for the big day.
While a floor length white gown and dainty shoes might well be your ideal
wedding outfit, you should think about your venue and whether it will be easy to
get around. Consider how easy it will be to walk around without staining
everything or tripping on your train or high heels. The same applies to your
guests. Weddings are an occasion for people to get dressed up so many guests
will be wearing fancy shoes and garments.
If you fail to let them know of any practical location considerations in
advance, you could end up with a rather miserable bunch traipsing through wet
patches of grass, sand or, worse still, mud.
First of all, you need to determine whether you want to hold the ceremony
itself outdoors or just the reception. If you are keen on an outdoor ceremony,
make sure it is possible and legally viable to get married in your chosen
Secondly, think about how accessible the venue is. Remember your guests have
to be able to get there too, and find space to park their cars.
Assess how practical the location is. What options do you have if it rains?
Are there toilet facilities in the vicinity? Ask as many questions as you can so
nothing can go wrong on the big day.
For an outdoor ceremony you will need seats for your guests, a podium and
anything the registrar requires to conduct the ceremony. To avoid getting stuck
in the rain, a marquee is well worth the money. For big groups you might want to
consider renting a sound system so everyone can hear the vows. If you have any guests with disabilities, consider how easy it will be for
them to access the area. You might need to set up some ramps.
The reception needs more equipment. Tables, chairs and decorations are just
the basics. As most people have discos at their weddings, rent a marquee with a
dance floor. This will also make it a lot easier for guests to walk around in
their dressy shoes.
You will need to organise lighting and sound, with which a diesel power
generator comes hand in hand for providing electricity.
Depending on where you are hosting the wedding, portable toilets might need
to be set up. If you are hoping to serve food, portable kitchen equipment will
also be needed. Catering companies will be able to advise on the
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