- 10 years ago
My fiance and I have both always wanted an outdoor wedding but couldn’t do it until Nov 22nd when weather is in the high 40’s/low 50’s in the NW. I want to run our idea past you to see 1) if you think we’re as nuts as some of our East Coast guest think we are and 2) how to set up the timing & order of events so it flows naturally. I want it to feel like a wedding celebration (more than just a picnic) but not get too formal. Here’s our plan at the moment:
We’ve picked a park that’s well-sheltered from wind and has a ceremony area, picnic area, & play area all near each other. In the same area of all of this is a brand new, very simple looking, barn like shelter with four walls and a roof but it’s not heated. Bathrooms are just up the way.
Photos before hand
2-3 pm Ceremony – arriving guests will be offered a cup of hot cider, we’ll have blankets laid out on seats for folks to share, and we’ll have patio heaters (they say heat radiates 10′ but I was just at a wedding with them and the heat was only felt within 2′ of them… does anyone who’s used them recall their experience?)
We’re sneaking off for 15 min or so of time just to ourselves. Then, we’ll enter and I’m hoping someone can say "Announcing Mr. & Mrs…" That seems wedding-like and celebratory to me vs. just a regular family picnic. We’ll have done photos before though there may be a few more to do before we re-group. We’re trying to keep posed photos minimal.
Meanwhile, certain friends will move the patio heaters to the picnic area, light the fire in the fir pit while guests enjoy snacks & hot drinks. I’m hoping people won’t retreat to the barn shelter yet but enjoy the outdoors instead. I wondered about us kicking off some type of game after we arrive and thanks/welcome folks. But we’ll probably want to mingle ourselves.
3-4 pm Mingling in picnic area w/snacks, mulled wine, games, & fire in the fire pit while background music plays. — Do you think this could go 1.5 hours to have more time outside or would that make the games & mingling go on too long? If we did this, we’d start everything a 1/2 hour earlier in day?
4 pm Caterer rings the dinner bell (sunsets at 4:30 pm), folks gather to get their food buffet style. People enter into barn to sit down and eat. How long does it take for 100 to serve themselves buffet?
4:30 – 7 pm Dinner, toasts, first dance, cut cake, dancing…. IN WHAT ORDER SHOULD ALL THIS HAPPEN? Should we do the toasts outside before the dinner bell rings? But then how do we gather everyone together if they’re mingling about, visiting & playing games? What is the most natural timing for toasts… after everyone is seated eating dinner? What’s the most natural timing for the first dance? I thought it’d be right before the dancing kicks off for the evening but I’m reading most do it before toasts and the dancing isn’t until after you cut the cake. What leads you into cutting the cake?
I know we can just do whatever we want – it’s our day – but I want to do what feels like a natural flow of energy and I just can’t picture how it goes in my mind. Sorry this is so long. I’ve never posted anything to a website before. Not sure what the protocal is.