Planning an Outdoor Wedding or Reception? Have a Plan B!

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Flowers are arranged; the strings begin the opening strains of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons; the elegant reception tables are gleaming.  You’ve dreamed of an outdoor wedding since you were a child. And then, a crack of thunder and a sudden cloudburst puts a damper on your big event.

Professional destination wedding planners (think Caribbean) always have a Plan B in place and so should you. Just because it rains on your outdoor wedding and reception, doesn’t mean it has to rain on your parade. Like most things in life, it’s your ability to handle changes well that determines your disposition. So, where do you begin? Unique Events of Iowa pulled together some recommendations.

Outdoor Wedding Plan B

Talk to everyone involved with your wedding and reception. This includes event rentals, florists, DJ services and caterers. Take these steps months in advance to get a better feel for what might be involved with moving your event indoors. Companies differ on how far they’ll go if you decide to stick to the original plan despite bad weather. They’ve got electrical systems to think about as well as fragile flowers, rental chairs as well as food and drink. Is it a matter of putting up additional tents outside or moving into a nearby structure?

Once you have an understanding of those parameters, look for flexibility. Iowa weather can be touch and go but a lot of beautiful weddings play out as originally planned after everyone waits a few minutes for the rain to stop. If you’re looking at a week of heavy rain in the forecast, make the decision sooner rather than later. It will give everyone time to get everything delivered to the right place. If you want to hold out for better weather and think there’s a bona fide chance of sunny skies, check with the companies you’re working with to see what the absolute minimum amount of time will be needed to move indoors.

Write down your plan and share it. You’re likely to have your mind on many things the day or even week before the wedding, it’s a good idea to have your plan written down or put it on your phone or tablet for easy access. Include a step-by-step set of instructions so you don’t leave anyone important out of the communication. Probably the best advice is to make the best call based on what you know and then embrace it. Remember in many cultures, rain at a wedding is considered a sign of good luck. And a quick internet search will yield some gorgeous, romantic wedding photos in the rain, too. Above all else, remember that when the bride is smiling, EVERYBODY smiles.

Need some help with all of this? Contact Unique Events of Iowa! From chiavari chairs to exquisite flowers, we can help with your wedding, reception or other major events. 319-721-4154 in eastern Iowa and 515-212-1498 in Des Moines.


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