Post # 1
Please help an indecisive bride and weigh in on my dilemma. Like most brides I’m very picky and searched high and low for a venue and finally found one that I love – it’s got everything I want – a historic mansion, great view, outdoor ceremony, good location near the city, good price. But it’s so popular, and the only date I was able to get in the spring/summer 2010 (when I want to get married) is a Sunday (all Saturday evenings from April to September are booked). I can envision my dream wedding here. My fiance and I want an evening dinner and dancing reception, but I’m very very worried about guests not enjoying themselves because of work the next day, the party being less fun, etc.
We found another venue that appeals less to my romantic side but certainly more to my practical side – a new boutique hotel in a charming town, metro access, availability of most dates including a Saturday evening that we want (since it just opened), a bridal suite, and an inner courtyard. It doesn’t have the charm and the “open air” feel of the first venue, but being able to have it on a Saturday means more convenient for our guests, and would be more conducive to fun partying.
Which one would you choose?
Post # 3
What is the price difference between the two venues? Is there a holiday weekend that the historic venue is available on a Sunday in which most people would have Monday off (although then you have to consider that some guests don’t like losing a three day weekend). Is early October available or might it be too cold in DC? If you marry off season or on a Sunday you might save a lot on vendor prices.
It always helps me to sleep on some of these decisions – but if they had a Saturday in early October I’d at least try to put a hold on it.
Post # 4
I agree with Professorbee. if they have a long weekend available (like July 4th, or Labor day), maybe you can get the Sunday night because then you won’t have to work on Monday. If you want the evening wedding, with the dancing all night kind of thing – then I would suggest doing the long weekend or the Saturday at the other place – it’s hard for people to go to work the next day when they’ve been partying it up at your wedding until late!!
Post # 5
Well…yikes. I had a venue just like you described (plantation house) with an outdoor ceremony and everything. And everyone was just in awe of it. It’s popular, but nobody had really been there befoe. And, it was a Saturday night, and it was the funnest wedding some people had been to (so i was told!!!!!)
So, I, too, would wait til October and have your cake AND pie. Fall weddings are so pretty. I wanted a June wedding, though, but I was willing to wait to "have it all".
Post # 6
We are getting married on a Sunday to have our dream venue. We could have picked other places, but it just wasn’t right… I say go with your heart and your gut.
Post # 7
Sunday twilight is a very popular option around here. Can you do a 3 or 4 o’clock ceremony. That gives you plenty of time to get ready in the morning, and its not too late for guests to get home.
Post # 8
I agree that you should look for a long weekend or have the party earlier in the day. However, if that is not possible I would go for Sunday at your dream venue. When you have found your dream venue you shouldn’t compromise and I think the people important to you will be there and put up with being tired on Monday (I would for my family and friends!)
I am also in DC and your dream venue sounds amazing! If you could send me a message with the name of the venue that would be great (don’t worry, I won’t steal your date We haven’t set the date yet and it won’t be until 2011 at the earliest!)
Post # 9
I agree with tryignt o find a long weekend, adn also maybe doing the Sunday at a little earlier. THose would be great options.
Which is more important, the venue or having it in the evening with dinner and dancing? If you want both find a holiday weekend, or put off your wedding until they have Saturday openings. You could always do a plain old Sunday in the evening, but don’t be surprised if a lot of guests leave early and dancing fizzles out. (However, I don’t think a Sunday date, will just keep guests away, entirely.)
Post # 10
Out of curiousity – could you do a Friday evening wedding? If most guest are close to you they could take 1/2 day off work and you wouldn’t feel guilty b/c they would have Sat/Sun to recoop.
I think you should go with your gut and go for the dream wedding location b/c if you don’t you will always have that what if in the back of your mind.
Post # 11
I’ve been to Sunday weddings before and still managed to get up for work! I agree with everyone else, see what you can do to work around the Sunday part but don’t compromise on your dream venue!
Post # 12
We are having our wedding on a Sunday for similar reasons. Our photographer only had the weekend of our wedding open in the date range we were looking in, but our location already had a wedding booked on the saturday. We decided to go ahead with the Sunday wedding. I have not heard one word about not being able to come to the wedding, or not being able to stay late because of work the next morning.
My opinion is if your family and friends want to come to your wedding, they will come on Saturday, Sunday, or Tuesday. I don’t think it will make that big of a difference.
On a side note, when we were first planning we had talked about having our wedding on a Wednesday (a special day for us), and through discussions with our photographer about available dates, he told me they had not seen a decrease in attendance in weekday weddings compared to weekend weddings. That was just an interesting piece of information that really surprised me.
My vote would be to book the Sunday location. 🙂 Good luck with your decision!
Post # 13
I agree with the other posters who suggest an October wedding. Perhaps you could even get the long weekend in October! D.C. is beautiful in October and there are so many cute shrugs and shawls that you could wear if the night got a little chilly.
If Oct. is not an option then I vote for the Sunday wedding.
Post # 14
I think the October option might be really good, if…your guests are used to cooler Octobers. Where are your guests from? I moved to Northern VA a few years ago from TX and while I think Octobers are beautiful, I find most nights to be a little too chilly for me. I wouldn’t be comfortable sitting outside during the evening. However, most people I work with are from the DC area or further north and they would be fine.
Post # 15
Thanks bunches, ladies, for your input. I’ve really only started posting on the boards and I’m amazed what a supportive community this is! Thank you again!
@professorbee: there is only a very slight difference in price by having it on a Sunday, and between the 2 venues my first choice would be more expensive and more work, since we have to bring in the caterer, etc. But I’m willing to shell out more for this venue.
@jaydee1125: I should think about Friday, but doesn’t this mean out-of-towners would have to take both Thurs and Fri off work? I have about 50% oots.
To others who proposed October, it would normally be a great idea and I do like fall season. Thing is, I’m from a tropical country, so “tropical escape” is the theme of the wedding, and the fiance is not keen about a very long engagement (by Oct 2010 we’d have been engaged for 19 months). Because of this we prefer spring/summer. Plus at the historic venue, we can only start the event at 7pm on Saturdays (they have an afternoon and evening events on Saturdays but only one event on other days), and by this time it would be too dark outside. And the charm with this venue is the garden and the views, so having it in the fall kind of beats the purpose.
Sundays on a long weekend in the spring and summer (there is only a handful of them) are all taken…
I haven’t been to too many weddings, and when I was invited to a Jewish wedding on a Sunday I didn’t even blink and just took Monday off. And it was fun, and we all danced and stayed late. What has your experience been with Sunday evening weddings?
Post # 16
We’re having a Sunday evening wedding next week. I don’t know of anyone who couldn’t come because it’s a Sunday. You should be fine. Our ceremony is at 3 and the reception will end at 9, so I think folks who want to take monday off will join us for the afterparty but folks who can’t take the extra day can make it home on time.
Where’s your venue?