Having your wedding ceremony and reception outside is a wonderful idea, but doing so in the Pacific Northwest requires a bit of extra preparation. Don’t ruminate about the possibility of disaster without taking action! Instead, take the time to consider reasonable precautions. Take a look at our preparation checklist and remedies to get you started.
Possible problem: Rain.
Remedy: Tent or umbrellas.
The first thing comes to mind for any PNW couple hoping to celebrate their nuptials outside is the possibility of R-A-I-N. To avert this disaster, look into renting a large tent (they don’t have to be solid white; you can rent clear top tents also) just as backup in case of a storm. We recommend to always include a tent for the reception as an undercover option to help shield from the possibility of a very hot sun or torrential downpour—in case the weather goes either way. If you are willing to risk it without the tent for your ceremony but still want to take slight precaution, provide umbrellas for your guests to take with them to their seats. This makes for stunning and unique photos as well!
Possible problem: Wind.
Remedy: Tent curtains, outdoor heaters, afghans or shawls.
The wind can pick up unexpectedly at the most inconvenient times around the PNW. Instead of panicking the minute it does, be ready with curtains on your tent. Tent curtains are a game changer and can make your space more intimate and cozy. Add some outdoor heaters to warm the space up and keep the cold out if you foresee a storm in the forecast. Another great idea is providing lightweight afghans or shawls for your guests to throw over their shoulders when the sun goes down and it starts to get chilly. This can double as a wedding favor if you are able to find afghans in bulk, making it easier to afford.
Possible problem: Hot hot heat.
Remedy: Handheld fans, cold beverages.
The warmest months in our neck of the woods usually consist of July and August with temperatures that can reach up to 88 degrees. Rare but still plausible, make sure to be checking the weather forecast as frequently as possible in the days leading up to your wedding during these two months. Handheld fans may not resolve the issue completely, but they will help your guests fight the heatwave until they can indulge in a cool beverage after the ceremony. This leads me to my next remedy; provide plenty of cold water…emphasis on the “cold!” Guests will be craving a refreshing drink and cocktails alone will just make them thirstier while creating a perfect storm of dehydration. Make access to chilled water easy and plentiful.
You can definitely have a successful wedding outdoors; you just need to make sure you have a backup plan in case something goes awry. Being prepared is important, so take these ideas into consideration when you’re planning your outdoor festivities.