Last Saturday, December 20, my little sister entered into matrimony . In Arizona where we reside, cold weather may be defined as "below 70 degrees Fahrenheit". So, you can imagine the goose pimples on the guests when weather for the outdoor ceremony and reception dipped below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Although most of the guests toughed-out the cold weather and stayed for the entire event, with recent memories of freezing fingers and toes, I propose the following ways to help avoid freezing guests and dwindling guest numbers:
1. Mention the weather considerations in your invitation – You may wish to place a mention the cold weather alongside the registry, wedding website, or venue map. For my sisters wedding we used a single (small) card (about the same size as the Response Card [RSVP Card] for this purpose, broken down as such:
Front side – Registry, event timeline, and weather consideration mention
Back side – Venue address, map, and driving directions
2. Having an indoor ceremony and/or reception? Set-up a coat check area . Guests will appreciate not having to lug around their winter coats, or worse yet having to hang them over the back of their chairs.
3. Having the event(s) indoors away from the cold weather? Err on the side of placing the thermostat temperature "a little cool". Consider that your guests may not be able to peel off too many layers past their winter coats should the indoor temperature climb. (Nearly everyone gets warm when they dance.)
4. Having the event(s) outdoors in the cold weather? Err on the side of heat which means considering the use of heaters, fireplaces, hand-warming packets , or decorative fire pits (covered or screened) where guests can warm their parts and then leave to enjoy more wedding action.
5. Incremental weather means having brooms on-hand to sweep away water, shovels or a snowplow on stand-by to make a path in snow, and umbrellas for the ushers use to assist guests as they arrive and depart.
6. Transportation considerations – if your ceremony and reception are in different locations and it is sure to be snowing, consider renting buses, limo buses, or cars to transport guests (to avoid parking accidents, sliding, or hydro-planing).
If you have any questions about this post, or need advice, feel free to contact [email protected].
Stay warm and Happy Holidays!
Alisha Forrester Scott
La Ruche. event design studio.