The heat can really wilt a wedding. If heat is what you're going to have, why not try and plan around it? What you don't want to do is rush the wedding ceremony. This is the real reason you've invited people. You want them to enjoy your ceremony and support the wedding vows that you've carefully crafted to be the blueprint for your marriage. So you need to make your guests comfortable so they can enjoy your ceremony and your love for one another.
The weather is going to be what it's going to be. Plan early so you're not caught reacting to the heat and feeling cheated because your day isn't exactly what it is. It's your wedding day. Make it perfect, whatever the temperatures. Here are some things to think about when planning for heat:
- Time of Day: If you haven't already set the time for your wedding and aren't locked into the contract, consider NOT getting married in the hottest part of the day. There are plenty of ways to cope, but might as well plan ahead!
- Pace: Reduce the amount of things you were planning on doing. Let the rhythm of the wedding reflect the weather.
- Wedding Ceremony Site: Can you get married in the shade? Is it a good idea to rent a tent? Can you have fans set to keep people comfortable? Yes, this is expensive, but you don't want to waste all the money you've planned to spend on your wedding because it's too hot for people to enjoy it.
- Formality: You might want to have a more casual wedding (no, not shorts and tee shirts) so that appropriate clothing is appropriate to the weather as well as the occasion.
- Clothing for Guests: This is the glory of the e-mail age. Send them a message and let them now that the forecast is stuck on steamy. Suggest that the gentlemen wear short sleeved shirts and no jackets. Caution the women about the heat.
- Clothing for Bridal Party: Middle of the day, hot weather weddings are not necessarily perfect for traditional wedding clothes. Think about alternatives. Fainting because you're too hot in a tux or a ton of crinolines isn't helpful.
- Head Coverings: I was a guest at a wedding where they had rented parasols. It was wonderful and helpful. And made the most amazing pictures. Or buy ballcaps for everyone and have your names embroidered on them.
- Aids in the Heat: Hand out fans. Or personalized misters. Give people small containers of frozen grapes to suck on.
- Drinks: You want to keep people drinking fluids in the heat. And you want to cut back on alcohol. The last thing you want for your wedding is people's getting heatstroke. Alcohol and heat don't mix well. But have water and or lemonade available at your wedding ceremony. And stay hydrated yourself. Put water up front for the bridal party. Stop and enjoy it. Serve appropriate drinks at the reception.
- Food: Rather than serving a sit-down meal, have a buffet of room temperature foods that can be enjoyed leisurely. Salads, cold meats and fish. Consider an ice cream bar or a cool pudding rather than a cake that can melt.
- Music: If you're not in air conditioning, this may not be the right place for a full on wedding band. You may want something a bit more low key so people can enjoy themselves without too much exertion. Your band always needs cover.
Enjoy your wedding. You deserve it. You've worked hard to make dreams come true, don't let the weather get in the way of your making promises and soliciting your guests support for your marriage of a lifetime.