How to Have a Foolproof Outdoor Wedding

At its best, an outdoor wedding is a glorious celebration of both love and nature. But an outdoor wedding comes with inherent risks, so you’ll need to ready with a great “Plan B,” even if it doesn’t rain. These tips will ensure a successful celebration.

Plan for heat and humidity. Summer weddings can be positively stifling when guests have to sit in the direct sun on a 90-degree day. Elderly guests suffer the most, so you should have alternative seating arrangements for them – perhaps some tables indoors, or at least a shady spot. A basket of sunglasses and fans is also a good idea.

Use a microphone! Every officiant thinks his voice will carry, and every guest will hear every word. WRONG! All it takes is a puff of wind or a rustle of leaves, and nobody will hear a thing. Be considerate of your guests. Tell your officiant, “You WILL use the microphone!”

Spray. A wedding in the woods can be positively breathtaking. And it solves some of the direct-sunlight issues. But the woods are usually full of bugs. If your venue doesn’t spray for mosquitoes before your wedding ceremony, find a company that does. Your guests will thank you.

What if it rains? There are several ways to prepare for the possibility of rain. You may rent a tent. You may choose a venue that offers an indoor alternative if the weather looks too risky. One of our couples even seated their guests under a covered pavilion and had the wedding party stand in the rain, wearing colorful matching rain boots. Be prepared to go to “Plan B” on a moment’s notice. Don’t wait until your wedding day to ask, “What if…?”

Have you thought about your music? Some couples prefer a classical string quartet or orchestra for their outdoor ceremonies. Just remember, a quartet or orchestra won’t provide a microphone or a sound system to amplify it. Even a live electrical band doesn’t typically set up a separate microphone for your officiant. But a DJ does. Modern mobile DJs have compact sound systems that are perfect for outdoor ceremonies. They can even bring whisper-quiet generators that provide portable power in areas not served by electrical outlets. And if you have favorite selections of recorded processional music, your DJ can play them, just the way you remember them.

Consider a cruise ship. One potential venue that is already prepared for rain is a cruise ship. Whether it’s the Odyssey, the Mystic Blue or the Valara VI, a cruise ship already comes with ample indoor space for a ceremony and reception. And if the rain stops, your guests can be back outside in mere seconds. Plus, a cruise offers a constantly changing view, and a nice breeze in the hot summer months.

Once you’ve prepared for changing weather, you’ll be able to approach your wedding day with confidence that everything will be just right. And at the end of the day, you’ll be married to the partner of your dreams. And that’s something a little rain can’t ruin.

To learn more about Fourth Estate Audio’s incomparable service, call me at 630.654.4440. I’m here to help.

© Fourth Estate Audio, 2014 – Jay Congdon is president of Fourth Estate Audio, a professional Chicago DJ and Chicago Wedding DJ company.

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