Post # 1
I did a walk through of my space last weekend and found out that my venue is not going to have chairs set up for the actual ceremony. There will be a couple of tables and chairs for the older people attending, but the majority of the guests will be standing. I am not a fan. They said we would have to rent chairs if we wanted them, but I don’t understand why they can’t have the chairs that we will be using in the reception area set up in the ceremony area and then move them back to the reception during the cocktail hour. I was talking to my mom just now and she isn’t really happy with the arrangment either. So, I’m trying to think of some other alternatives and not coming up with much.
If I did rent chairs, we would have the same issue, since if I’m renting chairs, I’m using them for the ceremony and reception, not just the 1/2 hour ceremony. However, does anyone know how much it would be?
If I were having an outdoor ceremony, I don’t think this would be an issue, since that had a more casual feel to it and I think would be more acceptable to my guests, but Maryland has unpredictable weather in October and I would rather not take my chances.
Has anyone else had a standing ceremony that went well? I’m planning on having about 120 guests for reference.
Post # 3
Is there any way to get them to bend the rules? We ran into this problem as well with one of the venues we were looking at but they would have bent the rules for us. Now that we’ve switched reception venues, we are doing all 200+people standing during the 30min wedding. But it’s in a park so there is no problem.
What would the venue do if all your guests brought their own folding chairs for the ceremony? Maybe the threat of lawn chairs will be enough to make them let you move the reception chairs.
Post # 4
LOL! It’s the club my parents belong too, so I think they would rather have lawn chairs than annoyed members!
Post # 5
I attended a standing only ceremony, and didn’t mind it at all. No one seemed to. Unless you’re having a full mass or something, I don’t think it should be an issue for people to stand for 20 minutes (tops).
I’m sure you could work something out with the Club, especially with your parents being members. Good Luck!
Post # 6
If you can’t figure out a way to seat your guests, I would suggest trying your best to let guests know ahead of time that they will have to stand, just so people are prepared since most will be expecting to be seated the whole time. If it is only for a ceremony, I think most people should be able to do that, but it is best to let them know in advance to avoid any surprises.
Post # 7
I’ve stood for 3 weddings. It was no problem. They didn’t tell us.
Post # 8
Sorry, if I were a guest, I would not like standing. First I would be wearing heels, so I would be uncomfortable standing in one place for that long, and second, I am short, so I probably would not be able to see the ceremony.
Post # 9
You also have to remember that many guests get there early, and will be standing for a good fifteen to twenty minutes PRIOR to the ceremony. Look into getting chairs – your guests will be thankful. Also, with that many people, it’s hard to see over heads, as well as hear everything through everyone!
Post # 10
I’ve been to a standing ceremony, but it was really short (maybe 15 minutes), and I do remember getting antsy.
Have you asked the venue what other couples normally do?
Post # 11
Quite frankly, I don’t think people not being able to see should factor into a decision here. I’ve been to plenty of outdoor weddings where even if there are chairs, I can’t see a damn thing. You can see better at a church because the couple are generally a few steps up. If they’re standing at least they could try to position themselves more strategically.
My ceremony site is the same way. Chair rentals are SOOOO expensive for at 15 minute ceremony, we’re foregoing them as well. Would rather put an extra $700 towards wine at the reception. We are, however, going to provide some bottled water and paper fans.
Post # 12
I’m 5’3″ and my FI is 6’3″. We would be hard pressed to find a place to stand where I could see and he wasn’t blocking people (I know that’s not something everyone has to deal with). My point is when I go to a wedding, the point, for me, is the ceremony and if I couldn’t see it because of the standing, I would be disappointed.
Also, like Gilneas said, most people will get there early and will be standing around so your 20 minute ceremony is likely 40-45 minutes of standing around for people. If you do this, try to let people know so they are prepared!