Wedding Weekend Tips
Creating the perfect wedding weekend can be a daunting task. The logistics are certainly more complicated than planning a single day event, and yes, chances are pretty good it will be more expensive, but what's more fun than celebrating your love with your very favourite people, for three whole days? Not to mention, having a whole weekend at your disposal gives both you and your guests time to relax and take it all in. .
A few things worth considering while planning your dream wedding getaway:
1. The Venue
This one is pretty straightforward, but not necessarily obvious.
Choosing the perfect venue to host your event will lay the foundation for the entire affair, so be sure to nail down your venue of preference before you get lost in all the fun details.
photo via penisula ridge
KEEP IN MIND
Restrictions: Does the venue have any restrictions that might put a damper on things? Ask about end times, noise restrictions, outside caterers, etc.
Layout: Before you fall in love with a venue, make sure it has enough space for those lawn games you have your heart set on.
2. The Timeline
There is no need to entertain your guests for every second of the weekend, but you do want to establish a solid timeline with enough activities to keep people busy, and happy! Your timeline will help set the pace the whole weekend, so the first step is deciding whether your are going for fast and fun or slow and relaxed--or maybe somewhere in between?A traditional wedding weekend will include a rehearsal dinner, ceremony and brunch, but even if traditional is not your style be sure to pencil in the key events first. Don't forget to create a wedding itinerary so your guests can keep track of all the fun!
Keep in mind:
Don't over plan! You want to create a great atmosphere for your guests, but adding too many activities to the roster can end up being stressful rather than enjoyable.
3. The Welcome Party
This is an essential part of your weekend, and not to be skipped. Remember that your guests will be arriving after long car rides,or flights-- and potentially after a long day at work too--so to avoid grumpy guests, put some thought into how you want to welcome them to your wonderful wedding weekend. There's no need for anything elaborate here, drinks and snacks in the hotel bar will work just fine! Try to keep things laid back and low key, your goal should be to get everyone into relaxation mode, there will be plenty of time to party later.
KEEP IN MIND:
While welcome baskets are not a requirement they are a lovely added touch and a great way to show some appreciation to your guests. Curate something unique to your event and include some local goodies, plus a handwritten note to truly wow your guests.
4. Advance Notice
If you plan on asking friends and family to dedicate a whole weekend to your nuptials, you'll want to give them plenty of time to make arrangements. Some guests may need to schedule time off work, book flights or plan their vacation time around your event, so be courteous and provide lots of notice. Send out save the dates 6-8 months in advance and be sure to include an itinerary when you send out your invitations, you want to keep everyone in the loop.
photo via a fabulous fete
KEEP IN MIND:
Wedding websites are your best friend! Add an insert to your invitation directing attention to your website, that way you can easily provide all sorts of additional information crucial to your event. You can easily make note of everything from accommodations and activities right down to packing checklists, ensuring your guests arrive prepared and ready to celebrate.
5. Be Yourselves
Of course you want your guests to have a great time, but this is YOUR wedding. Don't plan a camp getaway if you and your partner are city folks at heart, and vice versa, don't plan a weekend full of museums, galleries and wine tastings if you would rather be paddling down the river in cottage country. This circles back to selecting the perfect venue, make sure it embodies you as a couple, and not just one half of the couple but both of you! There may be a need to compromise, but there are so many wonderful venues out there I guarantee you can find something that suits the pair of you if you look hard enough.
KEEP IN MIND:
Don't overdo it on the DIY. Adding personal touches to your wedding is always lovely, but tacking on too many projects to your already enormous to-do list is never a good idea. Instead, select a few ideas and get them done ahead of time, the last thing you want is to be frantically putting things together two days before your wedding.
Have your heart set on a weekend affair, but not confident in your abilities to navigate all the logistics involved? Hire a planner! A professional coordinator will be able to tackle all the tough stuff for you, ensuring you get the wedding of your dreams, without the stress. At very least, be sure to enlist the help of family and friends, wedding weekends are a lot of work and you will need the assistance!