The Weekend Wedding

Couples are turning their "Special Day" into a weekend of fun and it's a great idea for the right couples!

For some couples the thought of a 1 day wedding is not enough.  They envision a weekend of fun for the whole family.   For many of these couples, its a cottage retreat, camping adventure or even a resort stay to bring the families together over a longer period of time.  Here are some things to keep in mind when considering this option for your wedding.

Image may contain: 1 person, smilingWho Will & Can Come?

A lot of couples go down the road of a weekend retreat wedding but later get disappointment if the idea doesn't go over well with their guests.    When deciding to do this for your event, be sure to pass the idea around the most important people that you may want at your wedding.  Keep in mind people who are a little older (like grandparents), people with little children, those who may have financial difficulties or issues getting time off work etc.  A lot of time a weekend wedding requires people to be able to drive a distance to the destination, take time off work or even just sleep away from home.  These factors may get in the way of them being able to participate in a weekend wedding. 

Some helpful tips would be :

  • choose a location that's not too far of a drive away for people
  • offer a shuttle service to the venue if it's farther away 
  • choose a destination that would be affordable for families OR consider offering the accommodation as part of your wedding budget
  • give MORE notice of your wedding dates so that people have time to budget & plan 

Double The PlanningImage may contain: 2 people, people smiling

If you thought planning a wedding was daunting; then a weekend wedding is double the work and potential fun :)  In addition to the regular wedding details; you'll also have to consider all the pre / post wedding day festivities and entertainment. 

Usually a weekend wedding calls for :

  • a lot of pre - wedding arrival planning and details with your guests 
  • a meet and greet event once everyone is on site the venue
  • pre wedding activities for invitees 
  • onsite wedding rehearsal / rehearsal dinner 
  • the Wedding Day
  • post wedding celebrations

It's A LOT more to think about and plan and a great time to consider an event planner if I might ad ;) 

Some helpful tips:

  • consider the weekend as a WHOLE when planning.  Map it all out - day by day - hour by hour
  • consider making a wedding website and a paper agenda for guests to follow along the schedule of the event
  • hire an event planner OR at least a day-of coordinator to keep everything on track and ensure no detail was missed 

The Venue

In addition to finding a venue that works with your budget and driving distance; its almost important to choose venues for weekend weddings that have the accommodations you need as well as entertainment options onsite and of course the wedding ceremony site / reception options that you wish for. 

Some great venues for weekend weddings include:

  • Family Resorts & Hotel i.e. Ramada Jackson's Point
  • A Camp Ground i.e. Camp Tamarack 
  • A Cottage Retreat i.e. Blue Mountain Village 

When selecting a weekend wedding destination, ensure that they have:

  • ample staffing onsite for the various mini-events within your event
  • lots of accommodations and types of accommodations for your various guest pairs i.e. singles, families, couples and some larger group-stay rooms
  • lots of different "spaces" for your mini events i.e. break-out rooms, unique spots to meet etc.   You don't want your main wedding reception venue to get over used prior to the big day
  • fun things around to keep people entertained during their visit i.e. pools, activities, beach, water, bonfire etc. are all great choices. 

As a professional event planner, I have had the privilege of doing MANY weekend weddings and events.   They can be a lot of fun for the amount of work that they do require.  Take a look at my portfolio to check out just a few of the ones I personally did.

Looking forward to working with you!

Connie Butera

Event Planner