As a wedding planner in Chicago, we are constantly suggesting ways to make the guest experience at your wedding or event the best possible from beginning to end. Many times, this includes finding creative ways to keep guests cool on a hot summer day. In the summer of 2012 we had many weekends with temperatures approaching 100 degrees! With summer wedding season rapidly approaching – keep these fun and creative ideas in mind as you finalize the details of your outdoor soiree…
- Program Fans – Your guests can keep cool while they peruse the program for the wedding or event
- Flavored water station – set up a self service water station where guests can wet their whistles while awaiting the start of an outdoor wedding ceremony
- Tents – Tents are not only to provide shelter from the rain – but are also perfect for providing a bit of shade on a hot summer day
- Don’t let guests expire in their attire – Invite guests to wear “outdoor appropriate” attire for the event. Advise in your invitation for men to leave their jackets and ties at home. Phrase it in a fun way like, “Summer Savvy Attire Invited.”
- Timing is Everything – Consider a wedding or event starting late in the day after the height of the afternoon heat
- Ceremony savvy – Try and face an outdoor ceremony AWAY from the sun, and keep it short! If a ceremony is 15-20 minutes or less, it’s much more likely that your guests won’t become anxious in the heat. Keep elderly guests indoors until the ceremony is ready to begin.
- Wedding Party Woes – Make sure the members of your wedding party (especially guys in tuxedos and the bride in that full gown!) don’t drink alcohol before the start of your event, and keep water handy near the front of the ceremony site in case someone feels lightheaded. Remember not to lock your knees and if you feel lightheaded – SIT DOWN before you pass out!
- Always have a backup plan – It’s hard to release the thought of your ideal outdoor event – but always have a Plan B and remember to use it. Those backup plans aren’t only for rain – but can make a world of difference in the heat as well. Guests will ONLY remember how hot it was and not the beauty of the venue if you force an outdoor event in extreme heat.