You know the warm, fuzzy feeling you get from trying on “the dress”? We at Marylee Marmer believe that you should get that awesome feeling for everything involved in your wedding, including the venue. Your wedding venue is the back drop for all of your pictures, ties your wedding theme together and is the place where you wedding day memories will be made. So naturally it can be daunting picking the perfect site. When you’re on the search here are a few important points to ask your wedding venue’s coordinator.
1. What is the rainy-day plan?- Does your venue provide tents if it rains the day of your wedding? If so, are they an extra cost? If you do chose an outdoor location, make sure you run through a rainy-day rehearsal just in case. (In order to prevent a stormy day, read our post about southern wedding traditions)
2. Is there a cancellation/ postponement policy?- It’s a fact of life that sometimes things don’t always happen picture-perfect. If sickness, changing jobs etc. changes the game-plan of your wedding date, make sure you’re not blind-sight by your venues cancellation policy. Is there a fee? Would you get any deposits back? Challenging situations can be made even worse by sticky contracts.
3. Is there a bridal suite?- A bridal suite is a great bonus for a venue to have. This is the place where the bride can finish any last minute touch ups, have a private bathroom and is also a safe place to keep wedding gifts.
4. Is valet included?- Parking can sometimes be a nightmare for wedding guests, especially in remote locations. Does your venue provide valet? If not could they provide a parking director? Make sure the parking lot can easily accommodate the number of guests you are anticipating.
5. Do you allow open flame?- If you have dreams of hanging lanterns or tables filled with tea candles, make sure your venue allows open flames. If not, discus with your decorator what flame-less options would help complete your theme.
6. Do you have staff to help with day-of coordination?- Some venues have their own event staff to assist you on the day of. If you have a separate wedding coordinator, ask if she can get in touch with the venue’s event staff to make sure everyone is clear on their day-of responsibilities.
7. What is the Alcohol policy?- Venues take ABC license laws seriously and it’s important to respect them. Ask about your venue about their ABC policy. Who will be serving the alcohol? Is there a limit on the number of drinks per person? Who is in charge of bar clean up? Make sure all of your bases are covered and then follow the rules. Don’t allow guests to bring alcohol from off-site or take any home.
8. Is the date only mine?- Some venues book multiple events a day. Ask if you have the venue to yourself for the big day. If not, where is the other event taking place on the property? What type of event is it? If there is an event the night before your wedding day is there a guarantee that your space will be cleaned up?
9. When can I make deliveries?- Caterers will sometimes ask to drop plates and silverware off at the venue the night before. Decorators will ask similar questions about when they can start setting up. But if your venue is booking multiple events, they can’t have deliveries being made during the middle of another event. Ask your venue when is the earliest time that your wedding team can start making deliveries to the property and coordinate those times with everyone.
10. Who is responsible for clean up?- Don’t rush off for your honeymoon before forgetting how to coordinate all of the clean up. If your venue has an event staff, they are usually present to help with clean up but it is important to make sure. Delegate who is responsible for packing up food, gifts and flowers and talk to your venue about who all should remain behind to help out. Remember, venues aren't storage units so clear everything out the night of.
You’re perfect venue is out there. Keep these questions in mind while you’re searching and you’ll find your dream spot. Happy hunting!
Image Courtesy of: Courage & Co Photography
Wedding Venue: Virginia Barn Wedding, Maidens VA