If your wedding is coming up soon, and you’re adamant about keeping your date during this age of social distancing and concerns over COVID-19, then you’re likely racking your brain thinking about how to pull this off during these unique times.
Well, stress no more!
As I prepare for my first wedding post-quarantine on July 10, I’ve put a lot of thought into how to create a celebration that is vibrant, memorable, and- above all- safe. Thankfully, the amazing couple I’m working with has also done their homework. We’ve come up with a smart way to plan a fun wedding in a pandemic.
With their original venue unable to host a wedding just yet, my soon-to-be newlyweds had to find a new space to house their big day. Thankfully, they were able to secure an outdoor pavilion, surrounded by acres of open land in a park in New York’s Hudson Valley. It’s all open-air. They rented a tent that will stand alongside the pavilion so that everyone can maintain a safe social distance the whole time.
TIMING THINGS SAFELY
The next thing my couple did was look at their guest list (which they trimmed down to meet the regulations that will be in place) and they identified their loved ones with health concerns. They used this process to create a smaller, more intimate group of celebrants who will be there for the first hour of the wedding.
In that first hour, my couple will have…
- A brief ceremony
- Their First Dance
- Their Parent Dances
- Toasts by the Best Man and Maid of Honor
- Their Cake-Cutting Ceremony
Then, once that hour is up, the guests that have to leave because of health concerns will be able to go home, having witnessed all of the traditions and formalities.
After a buffer of 30 minutes, the rest of the guests will arrive for a reception. It will be comprised entirely of music, an open bar, and a delicious buffet- with all the traditions having been completed earlier on. So it basically becomes one big open party with no serious business to tend to!
My couple and their photographer will be handling all of the photos earlier in the day- before the ceremony. That’ll include their “First Look” photos, and some strategically staged family portraits with that small group of celebrants who will be there for that first hour.
Since they’ll be handling all of the formalities during Hour One, the photographer will only have to worry about capturing a few pictures of guests dancing once the main reception starts. They’ll get to head out mid-reception having gotten photos of all the major beats of the wedding, thus limiting their exposure to people.
As for me, I’ll be setting up a small canopy just outside the pavilion so that my workspace has some extra separation from the dance floor. Beyond that, I’ll also be bringing some signage with me that will alert guests that they can send me requests via text message during the party. This will prevent folks from having to get too close. I’ll also make an announcement regarding that in my initial welcome.
It’s Going To Be Epic
I can’t wait for this night to come. Why? Because folks have been locked up inside for so long that they’re going to be ready to cut loose and party! People will be so happy to be out and about, celebrating love and togetherness. And that’s a great feeling in these uncertain times.
If you’re planning a wedding this summer, hopefully, this advice will help you plan a fun wedding! For more great advice on how to plan a fun wedding in a pandemic, check out what wedding planners are sharing on Brides.com