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Choosing a Venue/ Site for your Ceremony

One of the very first steps to planning a great wedding, is the choice in venue.
At first you may feel overwhelmed and that your choices are limited, but that's not true! You DO have many choices:
  • Church
Being a faithful member has it's privileges. A church Wedding may be what you have always dreamed. if you were raised in a church community, you'll probably have the option of having you wedding there. Members usually have the advantage of first choice of dates and discounted pricing.

  • Home
A lovely option. You may need to be aware and conscious of your neighbors. Be aware that parking and noise will have an effect on your whole neighborhood. You'll save on venue fee's, but rental, delivery and possible permits makes this option a bit more logistically challenging.

  • Destination
A real trend these days! Hop off to Hawaii or any destination that has meaning to you and tie the knot there! A dozen people can have the event of a lifetime choosing this option.

  • Hotel
A very nice choice. You can have your ceremony and reception and usually not have to worry about much! Tables, chairs and linens are usually included. Catering is a point you'll want to investigate the most when making this choice. In most cases you will need to use the catering they provide and in some cases their baker as well. Start investigation then nagotiating on cake cutting fee's and corkage fee's if possible ;)

  • Community Center
What?! Oh now, don't be too quick to judge. With a designer, a crafty bride and family you can do wonders. Try draping the walls and low lighting. The advantages are that your date will most likely be available and there is usually parking and a floor for dancing, plus tables and chair.s Again with good draping, linens and chair covers anything is possible! If you want to serve alcohol, you may need to get permits and insurance.

  • Parks
An outdoor wedding is always lovely! You can choose a public park, but you'll need a permit from your local park and recreations department and an outdoor reception is a park is risky unless it's a BBQ. No public consumption of alcohol is the general rule, so check it out beforehand. For a ceremony, usually you can bring in an arch and chairs and viola, instant outdoor chapel, with permits! Read this post here at WeddingsInABox TheLinksBlog- Tips for You Outdoor Reception about outdoor ceremonies. See Pictues here WeddingsInABox- Outdoor Wedding Pictures

  • Beaches
Just about the same as a park wedding, the costs will include the rental of chairs and your permit! In fact if it's a short & small wedding, you don't even have to worry about chairs!

  • Rental Homes
Renting a vacation home can be a great way to bring in a lot of folks, put them up and have the ceremony and reception in one place! Always make sure you are truthful when renting a home. Don't thing that this is one of the cases when mentioning wedding will up your cost. Mentioning the wedding will get you help! You'll need to pay attention to the parking and noise issues mentioned above, and make sure you have insurance!

There are Up's and Down's to each choice as you can see.When shopping a ceremony site, here are some important considerations and questions to ask. Always go and visit the sites that make it to the top of your list. Never ever book anything site unseen (and honestly, we believe this for destination weddings as well).

Ask these questions!

  • Is our wedding date available?
  • Is there or will you book another Wedding on the same date? Ask for details.
  • We will be the only ones at the facility that day, or will there be other people milling about (think about privacy).
  • When can we have access?
  • When can we start decorating?
  • When can my vendors deliver their goods?
  • How easy/hard are you to find?
  • Is there parking for all of my guests?
  • If it is a Church, do you allow non-members to married at your Church?
  • Will the Pastor at the church perform my wedding? Will we need to go through pre-marital counseling? How much and for how long?
  • Will you let us bring in our own Officiant to your Church?
  • What is included in my rental fee? (Musicians? Officiant? Coordinator? Candelabras?)
  • How many people can your venue accommodate?
  • Candles? Are there restrictions we should be aware of?
  • We have an arch we want to be married under, can your venue accommodate that?
  • Is there a dressing room available for the Bride and her Bride's maids? A bathroom close by? Same for the groomsmen, is there a spot other than the restroom to change in?
  • Is there a room that is private for the Bride and Groom, possibly a place to sign the papers after the ceremony?Is there a place for my family to sit and wait for the ceremony to start other than hard pew benches or lobby area?
  • What is NOT included that i will need to provide?
  • How much to reserve my date? Is that refundable? Does the deposit go toward my total? When is the remainder due?
  • May I have a receipt and everything we have discussed in a written agreement?

You may want to think waaay into the future now and see what a reheasal would entail at the site you choose. Read this The Wedding Rehearsal - A Quick Reminder- Tweaked with Links in this WIAB Links post. Give careful consideration and forethought into what you'll need on your wedding day and a the days before!

Links to Advice Articles on Choosing a Wedding Venue/ Ceremony Site

Wedding Planning Hints
Good advice and things to think about!

Wedding Details
Outdoor Wedding advice here.

Wedding Details
Advice when booking your Ceremony Location.

One Wed
Choosing a Wedding Site, article on this site.

Advice for choosing a ceremony location
Here at Banquet & Event Resources they have a lot of great resources and advice!

My Wedding!
A comprehensive list of Wedding ceremony sites in and around your area.

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