Imagine: You’re walking through a park at sunset or eating dinner at a swanky restaurant or surrounded by friends and family at a barbeque. The love of your life gets down on one knee and offers to love and cherish you until the end of time. You cry, say yes, and a beautiful diamond slides into place on your left hand. You celebrate with your loved ones, but panic slowly sets in: Now you have to plan a wedding, and you have no idea where to start.
Weddings can be stressful, what with all the flowers and invitations and dresses and music and food and centerpieces and bowties and cake. However, the most important item to check off the to-do list, and the one that should be done first, is finding a wedding venue. The good news: Finding the perfect venue doesn’t have to be hard or stressful. And often, choosing the right venue checks even more items off that list in one fell swoop.
Here is a list of the top five things you should look for in a wedding venue.
- Location, Location, Location – You will treasure this day and your photos of it for the rest of your life. Pick a venue that has a variety of photo-op locations and backgrounds so you don’t have to leave the venue after the ceremony to take pictures. Make sure that if the venue is outdoors, it has an indoor area, too, just in case the weather turns nasty. Pick a venue that has enough space to hold the number of people that will be attending.
- Lodging – You will, inevitably, have relatives from out of town or out of state who need somewhere to stay during the days preceding and following the wedding. You’re going to be too stressed to even entertain the possibility of cleaning your house and taking care of them before, during, and after your big day, so choose a venue that provides lodging on-site or nearby for traveling guests.
- Food – Food is arguably the best part of a wedding. Select a venue that either provides catering or at least has a kitchen where food can be prepared, stored, and set up.
- Logistics – One of the most stressful parts of planning a wedding is making sure every aspect comes together at the right time and in the right way. Take some of the stress away and pick a venue that provides rooms on-site for the wedding party to get ready (so you can get there early and not have to worry about traffic or running late), tables, chairs, and tablecloths (so you don’t have to rent or buy them and then transport them to the venue), and staff members to help set everything up (so you don’t have to do everything yourself or ask guests to help).
- Rehearsal – The wedding rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner allow you to practice for the big day and have an intimate meal with your closest friends and family the night before you say, “I do.” Select a venue that allows you time and space to rehearse the ceremony and prepare and enjoy dinner afterward.
Health & Life May/June 2016
By Anna Limoges
Photography courtesy of Cancer Coalition of South Georgia