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  • Writer's pictureLydia Leek

Handling Challenges at Private Outdoor Venues

As wedding planners, we recognize that planning an unforgettable celebration involves mastering the logistics, requirements, and unique characteristics of each venue. Private outdoor venues present a distinct set of challenges that demand meticulous planning, surpassing the intricacies required for an indoor affair. In this blog post, I'll explain the nuances of handling challenges at private outdoor venues, while offering insights and tips for fellow wedding planners and pros to enhance their expertise.





Weather

One of the primary challenges at outdoor venues is the unpredictability of weather. As wedding professionals, we understand the significance of having contingency plans, especially for rain. Discussing potential weather scenarios upfront with couples is crucial. Tools like Merri allow planners to create multiple plans seamlessly, offering flexibility and preparedness. (CWPS members enjoy exclusive perks with Merri, a 3D & 2D floorplan planning platform, where you can wow your clients with highly realistic and incredibly detailed designs.


Logistics

There are quite a few logistics to consider when planning an outdoor wedding. Are you having a tent? And if so, are you using a reputable tent company to deliver and set up the tent? Do you know the requirements or preferences of the venue or homeowners as far as staking the tent into the ground? If you are also renting a dance floor, does it need to be raised off the ground so as to not ruin the grass or ground underneath? How long will this tent take to set-up? How long do you have access to the venue grounds for them to be able to set-up the tent? You can learn much more about the logistics of tents and what all goes into them in the CWP Society Wedding Design Consultant Certification Course!


Power and Facilities

In the great outdoors, power and facilities are not readily available. Bringing in the right amount of generators and bathrooms for guests is essential. Managing generators' noise levels is a delicate task to ensure they neither disrupt the ambiance nor are visible during the celebration. Clear pathways and designated areas for guest bathrooms are also important aspects to consider when planning.


Pests and Outdoor Elements

Bugs and animals are often overlooked challenges at outdoor events. Proactive measures such as bug fogging before setup, providing bug spray for guests, and setting expectations about potential outdoor elements are vital to managing these unwelcome guests effectively. I recommend including this information on the wedding website in order for guests to prepare themselves accordingly.


Terrain

Navigating challenging terrains is common in private outdoor venues. Private outdoor venues don’t always provide the best terrain for walking in fancy shoes. Sometimes the parking lot is a mile away from the ceremony site and then it’s another mile walk back to the cocktail hour and reception. Communicating potential challenges to guests, offering transportation solutions like golf carts, and setting expectations beforehand contribute to a more enjoyable guest experience.


Noise Ordinances 

Outdoor spaces can amplify noise levels. A lot of times, these private venues are located in neighborhoods or close to other people’s property. Understanding venue rules and county regulations, including music cut-off times and decibel level requirements, is crucial. Collaborating with DJs or bands ensures compliance while also meeting the client's expectations.


Handling challenges at private outdoor venues requires a blend of foresight, experience, and adaptability. While there are many things to consider when planning an outdoor event, weather, power and facilities, outdoor elements, terrain, and noise considerations are all important places to start. 




CWP Society Certified Educator, Lydia Leek

Content provided by Lydia Leek, owner of A Touch Of Gray Events and Certified Educator for the CWP Society. She holds the following certifications: CWP Society Certified Educator,  Master Certified Wedding Planner, Certified Design Consultant.


Her educator specialty is in the intricate world of private wedding venues.

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